Sunday, January 01, 2012
Someone, I forget now who it was (that's last night's dirty martinis talking), said that instead of a list of "resolutions", she had learned to take a yearly theme instead. I like that. I'm no good with rules and regulations, even if I make them myself (that's why my Tumblr and livejournal both are named "mumsananarchist", courtesy of the daughter who answered that way when asked whether her parents were Democrats or Republicans.) So I spent most of yesterday in silence - not difficult, since I broke the tv - and decided that my theme this year was to be (insert drum roll here) FEARLESSNESS.
I forget, once again, who said that there are only two emotional states - love and fear. I started rolling through lots of the events of the last couple years, and realized that most of my reactions had to do with fear: fear of being alone, fear of being penniless, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of new things, fear of loss, fear of hard work, fear of looking silly, fear of change in general. Many of these fears were masquerading as sensible things - I mean, who wants to fail, lose their investment and look like an idiot? - but at base, they were still fears.
If we're not acting out of love, we're acting out of fear. If I try to tie my daughters, both in their 20s, to me, that isn't love, that's fear of loss. If I refuse to spring for some new art supplies, or make some changes to my house, that's not love of the way things are, that's fear of penury or of trying something new. If I don't work at the novel or the Other Book, that isn't because I'm busy, that's because I'm afraid to invest the time in something that may not work out (another fear.)
So this year, I refuse to be afraid. If something doesn't kill me...well, Friedrich, it may not make me stronger, but it will make me wiser. And braver in the future. I joined a team that centers on doing an hour of exercise per day, based on some Irish legend. I don't have any Irish blood in me that I know of, but I have lots of Highland Scots, and that sort of challenge appeals to me.
I've been leery of quitting the evening alcoholic beverages - what if I can't sleep? Well, then the next day I'll be tired, but I imagine I'll survive just fine.
What if the book flops? At least it made it into print - even if I have to print it myself.
What if following what I truly enjoy doing leads me into (another) bankruptcy? Well, the first one didn't do me any harm - in fact, I learned things from it I would never have known otherwise. Meanwhile, I've been having fun.
There's nothing and no one holding me where I am now, in terms of employment (got none, lol), family (ditto, at least within 400 miles) or any other yardstick I can think of. I may be 56 and significantly overweight, but I can lose the weight ( I can't get any younger, but I can feel and maybe look younger), get my physical strength back, and find new passions (arts, my friends, not men) to pursue. Hell, I suppose it's not totally outside the realm of possibility to marry again - I suppose I shouldn't rule it out. I've only ever traveled north and south (PEI to Key West), but there's no reason why I can't go west. Or east, although that gets wet fairly soon.
A quick Rumi quote:
LIVE WHERE YOU FEAR TO LIVE.
DESTROY YOUR REPUTATION.
So that's the plan for 2012. And if I show any signs of fear, any Fraidy-cat bull!@#$, I expect you, my friends, to call me on it.
Best wishes for the best year of our lives!