Many years I make a dozen resolutions for New Year’s. This year the list is more succinct. Of course, the perennial dream — “get more organized” — goes without saying.
1. Keep moving forward.
I have been stalled for a few years, spending most of my mental and emotional energy on a fight I cannot win. I have to accept my powerlessness. (Gosh, that’s a tough one. Let go and let God, as the saying goes. This flies against my every instinct. Someone once told me, accurately, that my attitude was, “Move over, God.”) However I must accept the things I cannot change, kick myself back into gear, cheer up, remember the rest of my life’s goals, and work on them.
2. Stop complaining.
We kids used to joke about our father, whose Southern manners were so impeccable that he might have been vomiting all day but if you asked him how he was, he invariably responded, “Fine, thank you, and you?” When I helped him into bed on the night he died, I exclaimed, heartbroken by his fragility, “Oh, Dad, I’m so sorry!” “About what?” he asked brightly. I will never have Dad’s polite reserve and iron self-control, but I want to work on acquiring just a little.
3. Find time to strengthen my bad knee and elbow.
It’s a little unnerving how much weaker I have become in the last few years due to these injuries. Most of my dreams depend on my being reasonably able-bodied. I need to stop taking ibuprofen and start taking the time for physical therapy, before it’s too late.
4. Cherish the happy moments.
This is key. Those fleeting instants of contentment and joy come every day. Recently, lost in a fog of sad absorption, I haven’t paid enough attention.
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Last night the cows and sheep were quietly munching hay. The geese murmured to themselves. Flossie the grey tabby was braving the chickens to lap warm milk from the milk pan. I carried my pail outside, set it on the ice, and turned to pull the big barn doors closed. My shadow was thrown by the moon across the snow. I looked up at the stars and thought of all the generations who have done these chores before me, and I was comforted.
Love and joy to all. Happy New Year!