January 3, 2011

oh-leven [2011]

I have a seriously screwy love/hate relationship with transitions. On the one hand, I am reeeeeally bad at them. Not my forté in any sense of the word. But in theory, I think they are delightful. Which is why I like the idea of New Year's resolutions. I like the idea that one year ends and a new one starts, and that in said new year I can do new things. I can make new choices and meet new people and be new myself, somehow. I like that. I think it's hopeful and sometimes when things are full of yuck it's nice to get to a new year where there is a possibility of less yuck. I mean goodness, along that same line of thought I even sometimes like Mondays. New weeks when old ones weren't great. Yes, technically, any day or even minute can have the same effect, I recognize this. But there is something neat and clean about a Monday transition. And even more neat and clean is a new year. Oh-leven. New and neat and clean. 

Given my natural bent toward irrationality, I can tend to put too much stock in that, though, and I never want to put too much pressure on something silly like a change of date. Because really, it's just a different day. Things may not change much, in reality, and not even in a bad way. More in a just-because-we-write-a-different-year-on-our-checks-doesn't-mean-our-lives-are-dramatically-altered kind of way. Seems logical.
Which is why I really don't like resolutions. In theory, delightful, but in practice, potentially disastrous. In the past I have viewed it as much like saying, "Hey, I have an idea - let's make a list of things I probably won't do this year, so that when the year is over, I have an actual, pre-written, physical checklist of reasons I suck." Perhaps a little dramatic, sure, but my point is NYR's can go one way or the other. That said, I went back just now and read my blog from New Years LAST year, and I am unexpectedly thrilled. I did not plan this. I swear to you. Check it: 
[in 2010] I will be freer, generally speaking.
Direct excerpt from my "Christmas Card" this year. Check it:
Despite the fact that life is not perfect, that I still don't have a job and I am still in transition and I still have a ton to figure out, I feel thankful to reach the end of 2010 and tell you... I am free-er than I have ever been.
And you know I didn't plan that, because if I had, I would have spelled free-er/freer the same both times. (The difference is driving me a little nuts actually. I would say I am uptight about a total of 3-5 things total in my entire life but one of them is, beyond a shadow of a doubt, spelling.) I am acutely aware as I read those words (all spelling issues aside) that there was no resolution I could have made to make that happen for myself.

My hope for us in oh-leven is pretty simple. I want to learn how to do free better. I want to do new things and make new choices and meet new people and live newly. I want to do more of the things that delight me, like investing in wonderful people, singing karaoke in my living room, and wearing red lipstick and crazy nail polish. Probably I will try to find a job and go to the gym more or read more books too, let's be honest. I'm not completely above resolutions. But mostly I want to enjoy the gift I have already been given and try to live from there. I want to rest in the truth and power of Jesus and live out of that, because that's the only place I've ever found freedom. I want to take risks, and I will only take risks if I am free. I've started practicing (it's hard and hurts a little, I will not lie to you, and I can't say yet that I love that) but I want to get better at it. 

Making freedom the goal for 2010 wasn't a resolution, it was a prayer. 
And I'm not achieving it, it's being given to me. 

happy New Year & happy Monday & happy 1:19 pm. Newness all around. Let's pray and take risks and be free and new. What do you say?

1 comment:

sarahannnoel said...


This is normally why I love a new year--much like you and Mondays--it's a sense of freedom and renewal.

But I just don't quite feel that way this year. Last year is running into this year because the slate doesn't wipe clean when you're in the middle of a pregnancy. It's like the year doesn't really start until February. Everything's on hold until then and there are so many questions.

So this year, no planning, no resolutions (there are lots of organizing projects, but that comes with a new baby); it's just hang on for the ride and go with the flow.