It’s 2016! I love the New Year; it’s one of my favorite holidays. I’m all about renewal and rejuvenation, and even though it’s a little cheesy, the New Year is perfect for that.
Every year on January 1st, my dad and I go swimming in the ocean. We live in Florida, so it’s not much of a polar bear swim (today the ocean was over 70°F), but it might be my favorite tradition. Last year, he was teaching in Germany, so I had to swim without him. Weird. 4/10, would not recommend unless absolutely necessary. The cleansing aspect was wonderful, but I don’t love going it alone.
But! This year we went together, and my mom and sister and girlfriend all came along and swam, too, which was amazing. Mehek and I went out just past where the waves break and hung out in the water and talked about what we were letting go of this year. I’m letting go of resentment and frustration about my job—I’m deciding to love it like it deserves to be loved. My students deserve all the love I can gather, and I’m not wasting any energy holding onto frustration with the administration of my job or the unreasonable expectations often put on me.
I’m big on resolutions, and I tend to make upwards of 10 or 15 every year, but for 2016, I’m scaling down. Making 15 resolutions just leaves me with the bitter taste of self-loathing on my tongue every time I think about them. That’s the fun part of depression, isn’t it? Making multiple big life changes at a time is hard enough for anybody, but especially with my favorite symptom of depression: overwhelming apathy.
[tweet https://twitter.com/rubyetc/status/682688575587135488 hide_thread=’true’]
I feel you, Ruby.
So what are my resolutions? To check my email nightly and respond to every email that needs it. To be kind to my soul—do all my weekend work on Saturdays and leave Sundays for church, trips to the ocean, books and art and music, time with my girlfriend. To be kind to my body—eat more fruits and vegetables and be more active.
What am I not going to do? Count calories. Make a star chart for exercising. Expect myself to be a different person. Weigh myself (at all, ever). Make vague promises about being happier or stronger or braver.
To be slightly less glib, I love Wendy Xu’s take—on everything, really, but especially this. I want to make more art this year, but I don’t want to make numerical goals for it. Just getting in touch with my creativity is enough for me.
2016 is going to be a beautiful year, y’all. I can feel it.
Other reading: 15 Fresh Start Ideas for your New Year, Healthy Resolutions that are Alternatives to Weight Loss, Dying the Metaphorical Death