I can’t say I really make resolutions any longer, because let’s face it, I am always me, better some days than others, more or less productive, always with the best intent. (At least, that is better than not caring at all if I ever amount to much….MAYBE.)
But these are things I intend to do, as best I can, in this new year.
One of my Christmas gifts was this beautiful baby. I’ve always wanted a guitar of my own, and it used to belong to one of the best musicians (not to mention best men) I know; I know it was well-loved and properly cared for. A couple of years ago we spent one of the best weekends ever at the lake house owned by some friends; there was an evening there when Scott and Andrea, family of those friends and mutual friends of ours, of course, sat in the living room with their guitars and played and sang incredible music. While they are not married any longer, in those moments you could see what they had once been, and it made the music all the sweeter for a sentimental heart such as mine.
I made up my mind then that I really, really wanted to learn to play the guitar; I’d given one to my husband for a Christmas gift many years before…..which he has yet to learn to play. (He’s been busy. Life, you know. Job. Kid. All that jazz.) I actually considered learning to play his, since he wasn’t, but that didn’t seem such a cool thing to do. So when he gave me this one, my own! I asked him if he would consider taking the lessons WITH me. We have a DVD/book combo for starters, and there are lots of lessons available on YouTube. I don’t know, it’s just that I really want that moment, such as I saw at the lake, where we could be sitting close, facing each other, playing and singing together–even if no one else ever hears it.
He said he would. We haven’t, yet, but I will not give up on this one!
I am determined to finish my cookbook before I return to camp. So many have asked for it, it’s money just waiting to be made (money, I might add, that I very much need to earn.)
I am determined to complete the switching out of several rooms in this house, so my husband has a bigger ‘mancave,’ so I have a different writing room, so our bedroom makes better use of its space and layout. Those, too, are all things that can and should be accomplished before I return to camp, because I’d love to see a simple, will-do-for-now renovation of our bathroom done while I’m gone.
As most of us do, I am determined to keep losing weight, to continue adding more steps and more exercise to my day.
See what I mean? So much of this–too much of this–is the same list I come up with each year. How much time do I think I have?
Well, I don’t know, do I. Who does? But I lost two friends in the last couple of weeks; both were much, much too young to go. The one I said goodbye to yesterday packed so much into her life, though! more even than I had known since first meeting her at college. She earned two degrees, teaching school for years before earning her law degree, and throughout most of her life she was deeply, joyously, passionately involved in theatre. That is just a fraction of her accomplishments; if her life was cut short, it was at least full and rich in every way.
And I looked at my own life, thought about so many things on the drive home.
I seem to do everything way way later than most of my friends. Still haven’t finished college (and yes, that’s another one of the things on my list–I’m looking into it with all determination.) We were married ten years before we could buy a house, fifteen years before we were given our only child. There are so many things I want to do, and so many things have kept them from happening; some by my own choice, some by luck (or lack of it.)
If there are those we know whose lives are, as someone said yesterday, golden…..the same could never be said of us. And I am not saying that with any sense of jealousy or self-pity; there is luck, and some of us are more lucky than others. (Yes, I know, we make our own luck, have heard it before, but it still comes down to various shades of golden.)
And yet we’re still here, right where we want to be, still together. There’s one thing to be said for not having much: you appreciate every single thing you do have, and you value it all the more for it not having just fallen into your lap! Waiting so many years for a house, a child, means we treasured them, still treasure them, because we know what it was like all those years without.
Still working, still trying, with more realization that nothing will ever happen if we don’t make the changes we need. Look at money and career choices differently? On it. Have better health? All over it. Longing to travel? No longer wishing to, but planning to.
“Our indiscretion sometimes serves us well
When our deep plots do pall, and that should teach us
There’s a divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough-hew them how we will—”
“That is most certain.”
Shakespeare said it best, didn’t he?
I am saying it again.
Enough of I wish and if only. This is my life, the only one I get, and if my friend could recreate herself over and over again, enjoying ever-widening circles of accomplishments and friends….then I can, too. I’m never too old to learn, to try. I am never bored. Bring on that to-do list! It’s a new year….let’s burn it down.