Well, in my mind they are. New Year's to me isn't so much a holiday as the ending of one chapter and the beginning of the next. I eat cooked cabbage, cornbread and black eyed peas, for good finances and good health in the coming year.
I normally wait to take down my tree on New Year's Day and I subscribe to the notion that whatever you do on New Year's is what you'll be doing all year- ex. laundry, work, etc. (As if I wouldn't be doing that stuff anyway! LOL)
Some make resolutions. For years I did write down a list of resolutions, but I always failed at them and it left me feeling awful. Now I just concentrate on the goals in my heart- the desires I want to fulfill and the things I hope will happen in the coming year.
Last year the goals of my heart were to come up with more novel ideas, do revisions and editing on my finished novels, write 2-3 more, win NaNo again and join RWA and KYRW. Well, I did come up with more ideas, did revisions, wrote another novel and I'm still working on finished the 2nd one, which was the one I won NaNo with this year. I did join RWA and KYRW. I don't know if I'll get the 2nd novel finished by the end of this year, but I saw the majority of my "goals" reached, so I can't complain too much.
In 2008 I hope to write more novels, edit more, and get a few stories polished enough to send out and keep my fingers crossed that one (or more) find homes.
Almost 10 years ago, in 1998- I wrote myself a letter on my 23th birthday- a letter not to be opened until I was 10 years older- in 2008-- a "time capsule" if you will, about what my life was like at the time and where I thought I'd be in 10 years...LOL I will have to open that on my 33rd birthday in February, though I KNOW my life has changed dramatically since then. I'm no longer with the guy I was with at the time, and any dreams or hopes I had for the future I thought I would have with him are nonexistent. I don't have to read the note to know that my life is nothing like I imagined it would be. Haha!
All in all though, I think that's probably a good thing. I'm not that same young girl and that guy broke my heart, even though I now realize I cared about him, loved him even, but not enough to be married to him. I hope his life is better for not having me in it, the way I'm thankful for the life I now have without him.
Isn't that the oddest thing to say?
I guess though I think of it this way- I cherish the relationships I had once upon a time, but as Rascal Flatts so eloquently puts in one of their songs- "God bless the broken road that led me straight to you."
That's how I feel about my husband. There were others before him, ones who broke my heart, relationships that ended, sometimes seemingly without rhyme or reason, but on the narrow path I took, it was those roads I followed, the broken relationships along the way, that led me to my wonderful husband.
New Year's makes me a tad bit melancholy, mixed with reminiscent memories of years past. The loss of loved ones gone from our lives. It makes me take inventory of who I once was and who I am now- who I want to be in the coming years.
Years of experience has taught me to be thankful for where I've been, for who I was and who I am and to be forgiving of the hurts that have burnt me to my very core. I know it does me no good to hang on to the anger and hurt of the past. I can't thrive when I wallow in self-pity.
My mom always asks me, "How can you still care about so-and-so?" "How can you be so forgiving?"
My answer is always this- If it wasn't for what came before, I wouldn't be where I am. And that being the case, I should try my best to hold no grudges, to live without regret of the mistakes in my past, and to forgive past hurts and wrongdoings. To be THANKFUL for all of it- the good, the bad and the ugly. Everything that came before has shaped me into the person I am.
And well, I know I'm not perfect, but I think I have it pretty good. I have a roof over my head, food to cook/eat, a wonderful husband, beautiful kids, great friends and family who support my dreams and the freedom to pursue those dreams. Life isn't always easy or beautiful or simple, but I have the love of a good man and a really great life.
I'm hoping for more wonderful days with my husband and family in the coming year, the transition of my writing life, the transition of having my daughter start school in August and good sense not to take anything for granted.
My wish for you, my dear friends, is that 2008 holds all the wonderful things you hope and dream of. I wish you good health, happiness and joy. I hope that this year brings you more good than bad and seeing your dreams come true. May you be truly blessed.