New Beginnings

New Year’s Eve, also known as Hogmanay in Scotland, is a holiday celebrated on December 31st to mark the end of the year and the start of a new one. Celebrations may differ from place to place, but the one thing most of us have in common is our new year traditions from attending parties to watching fireworks and a season favorite, making resolutions. Every year it seems our faith in our abilities to make bad predictions about our future remains oh-so unwavering. Bad sounds like the wrong word to use. Maybe a more “on the nose” term would be inaccurate because let’s face it every year is as unpredictable as the last but then again, we are the culmination of our wrong decisions more so than our right, assuming we learn from the wrong ones, so a better question for you to start off the new year would be, what mistakes are you willing to make?

Fun fact: As part of his reform, Caesar instituted January 1st as the first day of the year partially to honor Janus, the Roman god of beginnings, whose faces allowed him to look back into the past and forward into the future. Resolutions aren’t anything new among the new year’s rituals. Everyone wants to lose weight, break a bad habit, or learn a new skill and there’s nothing wrong with wanting something better for yourself, the problem is the assumption that it will all go as planned. Even when you go to the grocery store, how often, unless forced by financial circumstances, do you only buy what you intended to buy? The point of all this isn’t to make you give up on your dreams and ambitions it’s to rather point out the differences in intention, planning, and execution. As much as we hope for the best, the best won’t always be what happens so assume the worst and move forward regardless. Pessimism is the way – A quote by some character in a Disney show.

Other than what’s to come, we reflect on what already did.

We accept our shortcomings and forgive ourselves for the days we weren’t strong enough to persevere. The days we broke our diet a few weeks early, the days we missed a month or 2 at the gym, the days we forgot the books we were supposed to read, the book we didn’t write, the trip we didn’t take. The resolutions we didn’t do, and we commend ourselves for trying. You didn’t do those ten pushups each day that you were supposed to, but you did 3, you didn’t read all those books that you wanted to, but you read 1 halfway. Maybe you tried to do too much at once. Maybe you tried and tried but that idea of yours just never seemed to work out, after all, to err is human. What’s important is that we try. We try again and again and again. We’re no geniuses, obviously, we’re not going to get anything the first time, but we try because we learn. Because we have no other way to learn but to fail and we hope that at the end of this heap of failures, lies a few options that turned out well.

Taking a break from the resolutions, partying is another great thing to do on New Year’s Eve. 

Everyone loves to celebrate by going out to clubs, pubs, or restaurants with their friends and loved ones though if you’re not big on being in a room full of sweaty people with deafening music and the scent of intoxication in the air, simple house parties are also good but let’s not forget what the most important part of the new years is. More than any resolution, more than any house party, more than the new Year kiss you keep hoping you’ll get every year. It’s the fireworks. Everybody loves fireworks.  It’s one of the most recognizable emblems of New Year’s Eve celebrations and to commemorate this anniversary, several cities and towns throughout the world put on spectacular firework displays from the Ball Drop in New York to the countdown on the Burj Khalifa. Fireworks is the reason why we all get together on New Years Eve because lets face it, we do all the other stuff regardless of what time of the year it is. I think waiting a whole year to set new goals for yourself is a questionable approach to this whole life thing but hey, who am I to judge, like you, I’m also just here for the fireworks.

There’s something beautiful about sending off the old year with a bang. It brings about that feeling of a good old Viking death but with less tears and more cheers. A funeral in all white like Kendrick Lamar’s “Don’t kill my vibe” as we stand steadfastly watching the arrow set the ship ablaze letting the old year go off to the afterlife. The invigorating feeling of being able to start afresh, having a clean slate so enjoy yourself, and have a little fun but whatever way you choose to spend New Year’s Eve, remember to be safe and responsible, and if you feel like doing a good deed to kick start the new year, what better way than getting Mariah Carey paid. Technically it’s still within her season. So while you do that, prep your resolutions, grab your sword and shield, and get ready for another year of unpredictability and excitement. 

Have a happy new year.