Tag: New Year

Why do we think next year is going to be any better?

Today is New Year’s Eve. Facebook is already starting to fill up with statuses waxing lyrical about how great next year is going to be and how hard and challenging this year has been. Everyone wants to put the past behind them and look to the future with head held high in an optimistic cloud of goodness.

So my weird thought is: why do we always think that the next year is going to be any better than this year and that we are going to behave any better than we have done this year?

Tomorrow is another year

Tomorrow is another year

It isn’t and we aren’t. 2016 is going to have the same amount of ups and downs and good and bad days as 2015 had. The bad times don’t end today, the good times don’t start tomorrow. In fact, chances are, things tomorrow will be pretty awful: we’ll be feeling tired, hungover, nauseated and fat. That’s not a great start to a new year. Then there is also that sick feeling that work is about to start soon and the knowledge that January is going to be a horrible, cold and boring month.

Are we really going to be nicer to people after tomorrow? Exercise more? Drink less? Eat better? Help more people across the road? Stand up on trains? Perhaps for a week or so, ten days at a stretch.

So I say that today instead of standing proud in a waft of sentimentality we should stay firmly on realistic ground and look back and accept that 2015 was a good year and a shitty one and look forward and expect 2016 to be the same. We should always strive to be nice to people, help them across the road (unless they don’t want to be helped), exercise regularly, drink and eat sensibly, and be forgiving of our adversaries. I ask you, dear reader, to do something extraordinary next year (as you may have done last year), take up something new, have a goal, seize the day. Those are all good goals to have all of the time. But equally accept that there will be times when you find yourself drawn into gossip, or letting a friend down, or not noticing the pregnant person standing on the train or wallowing in self-pity.

My new year’s resolution is: just keep doing the best I can with the resources I have to hand and keep seizing the day. Oh, and to keep blogging.

Why I like the no man’s land of Between Christmas And New Year

Today is the 28th December. I am in the midst of one of my favourite times of year: the no-man’s-land days between Christmas and New Year.

Today’s weird thought is about why I like these days.  No, correct that, why I LOVE these days.

I like this time because for 362-ish days of the year I am running around like a headless chicken: working, ferrying children, governoring, volunteering, being an art student and being a parent. I don’t just sit. I ride on the wave of anxiety. I don’t watch TV without doing something else at the same time. I flit from Wolverhampton, to school, to home, to school, to Zumba, and back home again. I don’t pause for thought or anything else.

Eat some Christmas pudding

Eat some Christmas pudding

I cope with that level of activity because for four or five days a year, I stop. I might dip in and out of work or my art after Christmas but I don’t do much of it. I mainly do nothing. I relax. Most of all, I sleep. During this time, my body says STOP! And I obey. I stop. I get up late, I have an afternoon nap or I sleep in the car or on the sofa, I doze in the evening, waking only to make the journey upstairs to bed. I am surrounded by family and we have nothing better to do than play with our presents, eat leftovers, drink wine while catching up on Christmas Day TV, ignore the mess building around us, and watch daytime television for no other reason than it would be rude not to.

Pick at the turkey

Pick at the turkey

So it amazes me when people are so keen to get their decorations down and get back to a routine (even those that do it on New Year’s Day – that’s still too early). I see (and hear them) get their hoovers out. Our next door neighbour was hoovering on Boxing Day morning. I say: stop your tidying and embrace the lazy days. Embrace the mess. You live busy, tidy lives the rest of the year. Sit, get fat, hibernate, sleep, do nothing and enjoy. Don’t worry about the mess. Let it lie. There is plenty of time in January for tidying. Just stop and feel proud of all you’ve achieved this year. For once, my advice is: don’t bother seizing the day. Leave the day to pass you by. Be a sleepy teenager.

I urge everyone over these few days to do something indulgent, read a book, lie in bed, drink Bailieys in bed, have long baths, play with Lego, eat pickled cabbage until you turn into a woopie cushion (that is what it does to me), eat it out of the jar with bread and butter, pick off the turkey carcas, and dip into the trifle. Enjoy. Make the most of it. You will burn it all off again in January.

Yum city

Yum city

I love these days. They all feel the same. What day is it? I think it is Monday or Tuesday. I don’t care. All this typing has exhausted me. Time for a sleep.