Sunday, December 31, 2017

Reset 2018

Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.
– Oprah Winfrey

We've been home since mid-September, the longest stretch that I can remember spending here at Farm Dover. I was happy to get back to the farm after a busy summer and fall of travel, and the farm seemed to be happy to have us back. Until this recent cold spell, Ed and I had spent most of our days outside, working on various projects that were calling out for attention.

And then there were the holidays.... Jack was home from Berlin. Mary and her boyfriend Brian flew in from Brooklyn. Maggie and Nate came Christmas Eve. So that night, the house was full – and my heart was even fuller. 

But they lead busy lives.... On Wednesday, Mary and Brian took off for a few days in Portland, Oregon. Jack has gone up to Indianapolis to spend the New Year's celebration with a friend from college and his family, who have very nearly adopted him. Maggie and Nate are entertaining friends at their home in Louisville. That leaves Ed and me to quietly welcome the new year. 

I've been thinking much about the new year. When the kids were young, Ed and I would try to carve out a few hours between Christmas and New Year to talk about the direction we wanted to focus our lives in the coming 12 months. We had categories! We had goals! We had action plans! And, for the most part, it was a helpful exercise. It was always surprising to look back at year end to discover that we had accomplished many of the plans we had set forth, despite all the crazy day-to-day living that was going on under our roof. 

I don't feel the need to dissect my life to that extent any more. I am who I am, and mostly happy with that person and the life she leads. Still it never hurts to do a bit of introspection, to shift focus a few degrees, to hone a new skill. 

And so this week, I hauled out that old planning format and considered a few of the categories: Farm. Self. Marriage. Family. Friends. Community. I noted a number of tasks that I wanted to tackle under each category. Once done, it looked more like my weekly "to-do" list than a stab at meaningful resolutions. And that's when it hit me. I don't need more to-dos or resolutions. But I could benefit from an awareness of my intentions for the new year. What do I want more of? Less of?

And so off I went on one of my internal dialogues – thinking hard, arguing with myself, making notes and revising them.

More moonlight/sunrise/starlight. 
More poetry/music/art/science. 
More touch. 
More gentleness to the earth/self/others. 
More intention. Less autopilot. 

That's it. Well, that's mostly it.

What about you? Do you make resolutions? Focus on intentions? Choose just one word for the year?

Whatever works for you, I hope you know that I am sending you wishes for a very happy new year, and another chance to get it right.