By DANA DITTMAR
So here we are again, facing a brand spanking new year. The ripped wrapping paper from Christmas and Hanukkah is already hauled to the curb. New presents will have been used and played with. Some of you have already started to take down the lights and pack up the wreath for next year. (I fall into this category. Once the big day is over, the decorations get carefully packed away for next year.)
The rush of the holidays is over. No more commando shopping expeditions or marathon cooking events. You don’t even hear carols on the radio anymore.
This is a transition week from the hurly-burly craziness that is the holiday season to the blank slate of opportunity and promise that is the new year. It’s a week of finishing up 2016 and preparing for 2017.
This column, being the last one of the year, will be filed under 2016 and sent to live for the foreseeable future on a disc in the storage closet. The computer will sport a new file name for all columns written for 2017, and soon it will begin to grow with new articles.
The check register for this year will be balanced out and put away in a notebook, until such time as the IRS says it’s okay to shred to confetti. The new register is clean with no math mistakes where I forgot to “carry the two.” The budget for next year is typed up and ready to go until the first unexpected breakdown of a household appliance puts a ding in it.
In the past week, I’ve had a facial, a sinfully decadent foot massage, my hair highlighted and trimmed and the nails of my hands and feet done to perfection. The cleaning crew was just in to do the heavy mopping and dusting of the house, and it is gleaming in the bright “winter” air.
There’s something about the cleanliness and purity of a new year that is seductive. We haven’t made any mistakes yet, or broken any promises. We’ve not shattered any expectations or broken any hearts. There is a feeling that we can finally do this year all of the things we said we would do last year, before life reminded us there are always surprises out there.
I’m as ready to enter this pristine new year as I ever could be. I’m excited and energized. I’m as full of wonder and awe as a child at the beach.
I’m sure it won’t stay pristine for long. I’ll break a nail or miss a deadline at the chamber. I’ll hit “save” a little too late and lose a document. I’ll get lazy and not exercise. Life isn’t perfect.
But it’s still a constant source of joy and opportunity. So balance your register, get a haircut and get ready to take on 2017. Enjoy Saturday night with friends and family. Happy New Year to you all.