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So what's the big deal about New Year's?

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Isn't January 1, just another day? Another new start? Just like we have every moment of every other day on the calendar? What's the significance of it all....

I think it is just like any other "marker" on the calendar. Birthdays, holidays, anniversaries. It is simply a point of reference. A time to look back to the same marker a year before. And to reflect on the events that took place between the two.

So I thought I would post a lovely blog with all my 2012 deep thoughts. So many good things happened. SO MUCH to be thankful for. But, instead, I am reflecting on the events of last night, and the reminders of how life can change so suddenly, so unexpectedly.

We had planned a party. But with the flu bug hitting us hard before Christmas, with travel, and sheer exhaustion, we cancelled and opted for a quiet dinner with some old friends at a lovely restaurant in Old Sacramento. We had a lovely meal, spent over 2 hours laughing, enjoying each other and then left to see the fireworks. They had a 9:00 show for the families, and had big plans for the second show at midnight for the "revelers". We did not want to deal with drunks, so thought we'd celebrate with New York and then head home.

After the fireworks, there were people dragging wagons filled with kids, strollers, etc, along with the older or quieter crowd who'd begun heading out. Simultaneously the party animals were heading in. The multi-story parking garage was filled and congested with people leaving, so we thought we'd stroll around waiting for it to dissipate. Basking in the celebration, we were suddenly almost trampled by people running with panic in their eyes, shouting about the shooting the guns the blood and getting out of there. There were cops swarming in from every direction, horseback, running on foot, and racing down the street in their cars. Then came the ambulances, the fire engines and so on.... I never dreamed I would spend NY Eve hiding behind a tree. We were a block away. The shots were fired in the street in front of the restaurant we had just left.

The entire area was on immediate lock down with helicopters, sirens, loud speakers, clearing the streets. We, along with an estimated 30-40,000 others got out as quickly (which was not too...) as we could. We knew at least one person had been killed (actually it was two) and four others were shot. The festive atmosphere had turned quite somber. I kept thinking of the poor children who had to witness yet another horrific act of violence, and the family members that would be getting "the call". How suddenly their lives changed....

When we finally got home I was exceedingly thankful to be safe. And in a warm home. I kept thinking of how for centuries, so much of the world has experienced bloodshed on their streets. And how there have not always been safe places to retreat to. And how there have often been more than 1, 5 or 26 victims. And frightening it is to now become so familiar with this kind of random violence in our smallest, quietest communities. What feels the worst to me, is that we are under attack from the inside....and I wonder where we can go from here?

I have goals for 2013. But they have shifted from the "SOS" (same of stuff...losing weight, getting organized, exercising more, etc....) to internal goals. To be more forgiving, loving, appreciative, grateful. To be more aware. To start the "where can we go" changes in my own life. Let go of anger, resentment, any negative feeling or behavior, so that people around me will be inspired. And motivated to change their own thinking and attitudes. I pray that we can all, one by one, be the difference, MAKE the change in this crazy, chaotic word.

I am grateful to be alive today. Grateful to be able to post. Grateful that I have another new start, a new marker. I am thankful in advance for all that will take place this upcoming year. I already know some of it will be very difficult. A lot of it will be wonderful. But my life goes on....
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • v MISS_VIV
    emoticon or day 2 or 3..... I am thankful for your being safe and that more weren't injured or wounded just trying to get out of the melee. We all need to take a step back and take a good look at where we have been and where we are going. emoticon

    1274 days ago
  • v AZIMAT
    Kathy, I'm adding my voice the the chorus of gratitude for your safety. Having been in a location not far from a bombing, I have some understanding of the shock and feeling of vulnerability as well as awareness of the fragility of life that you're experiencing.

    Good goals.

    Be kind to yourself, it takes time to heal from an experience like that.
    1274 days ago
    wow how scary for you at i am so pleased you are ok are right things like this do make us´s to making the world a better place .take care and keep smiling. emoticon
    1275 days ago
    I am so happy that you and A are safe and sound. What a scary, horrible thing to happen, period. And right on the heels of the school shooting, I'm sure it freaked you out even more!!!

    Many years ago, I gave up on going out for New Year's Eve at all. I'd seen too many car accidents from drunk drivers and people who just got crazy. So sad that this was a quiet neighborhood near home ...

    Way to turn it around into some positives for you, my friend!!

    With love and gratitude for your safety,
    1276 days ago
    So sorry that your night ended so sadly. emoticon Great thoughts for the upcoming year.
    1276 days ago
  • v SAVOY1
    I am grateful you are safe and sound. And I am so deeply saddened by these events, as we keep hearing of them everywhere. Somewhat numbed in fact, so that I fear it is conveyed as ambivalence. I pray for all effected and for your internal resolutions to be part of a change and a shift that we all share in, and that keeps rolling.

    here's to a safe and loving 2013
    1276 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/2/2013 10:34:38 AM
    Love your new goals - here's to a successful journey in 2013!
    1276 days ago
    Kathy, firstly I must make sure to let you know that I am also thankful that you were able to post this today for all of us to read. Life is full of surprises and we should all be more aware of all that could happen in a split second. Thank you for spreading the message of gratitude and forgiveness because with all of the negativity that surrounds us on a daily basis should open others' hearts and minds. It is so sad that we have to experience bad things to learn how to appreciate our lives yet some hearts refuse to let things go. i am with you on being more forgiving of others' and I hope to be an inspiration to many people like I am sure you already are Kathy!! Thank you for sharing your wisdom!! Have a blessed year full of many more things to be grateful for and peace in your soul!!! Maria emoticon
    1277 days ago
    emoticon you are so right your life can change in an instant we must appreciate all we have because you never know what can happen to you or someone you love .........
    1277 days ago
    Everything can change in an instant. You certainly have the right priorities for life. Happy New Year!
    1277 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1277 days ago
    I am grateful for your safe return home. I am grateful for your introspection and the plans that resulted. These are the kind of "pay it forward" ideas that can change the world, one person at a time.
    1277 days ago
    I'm glad you got home safely. One of my friends was in the bar they came out of. One of my former students was at a shop nearby. So thankful all those I know and love made it home safe and sound after all that.
    Yes, also thankful that I've never been a big New Year's Eve partier. I'm usually asleep.
    1277 days ago
    OMG wow thank heavens you are safe.... and so sad for the others. We dont' have as much of that up here in Canada, and sure hope whatever it is doesn't come north. I honestly think it is the availability of guns, we don't have them around as much as the US does. B ut no matter not in a discussion bout gun control, I just feel for the reg. ole folk that start living in fear.

    HUGS and I too am so thankful you are alive. Whew.

    1277 days ago
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