Thursday, January 2, 2014
Yesterday Jesse and I sat on the tarmac at O'Hare for two hours and occasionally stared out the window into the infinite whiteness of the snowstorm that delayed us. I wondered every now and then how exactly this plane might take flight with such low visibility but ultimately I disregarded any worry and turned back to my book.
In the past, The New Year was a concept that made me anxious. Here comes another year: what have I really accomplished? What am I going to do this year? But this new year's different; I am simply going to let go of measuring myself against... well, whatever arbitrary standard I would decide to affix (it always changed). Because calendar dates themselves are more or less arbitrary, age less so, but I'm happy - and isn't that the point everybody's striving for anyway? I'm working at letting go of pressures, because I'd rather plan and continue in this (happy) life at my own pace, with my loved ones, and without expectations that just lead to disappointment.
I do still think it's important to reflect, take stock, understand, and learn. But I'm doing that every day, and on New Year's Eve as I danced around with four other women who know exactly what it's like to be in the kind of marriage I'm in, as I watched that husband of mine do what he loves, I felt all the joys of being in the moment. I talked to my parents at (their) midnight, I texted with my brother and my future sister-in-law and best friends, and I kissed my husband as the clock struck.
There will always be upsetting things and I will make mistakes and I will disappoint others, but I'll still enjoy navigating this life with those around me. There's too much pain out there and I feel so little of it by comparison, that all I can do is be grateful. These thoughts were fueled partly by some fiction and non-fiction I've read recently, by the full outpouring of love felt in the presence of family last week, and just by the mountain of self-reflection that always appears on that end of year date.
Last night we landed an hour later than scheduled, but made it home smoothly and without incident. There really was nothing to fear rising up into the blinding whiteness; only home to look forward to.