Look at all you’ve done…

The new year brings with it an expectation to reflect and set intentions for how to perhaps improve from the last. Often these reflections result in an examination of all the ways we’ve fallen short and a profession to do better, eat better, exercise better…be better. Often the premise unspoken is that we’re not enough, we must improve, be different.

I wonder if there is a better way to start a new year. Perhaps in astonishment that we have made it through a year filled with so many challenges and yet we persisted. Perhaps filled with gratitude that our opportunities to contribute and bring joy to others continues. Perhaps thinking about all the small wonders that make up our life and rejoicing.

Each new year is an opportunity to wake up with the enthusiasm of Scrooge after his ghostly visits and realize that here we are, in the thick of it, able to love and be loved, able to contribute, and make a difference, filled with delight:

“Running to the window, he opened it, and put out his head. No fog, no mist; clear, bright, jovial, stirring, cold; cold, piping for the blood to dance to; Golden sunlight; Heavenly sky; sweet fresh air; merry bells. Oh, glorious. Glorious!”

When he finds out from a boy outside his window that it is still Christmas Day, Scrooge says, “I haven’t missed it. Yes, the spirits did it all in one night—they can do anything they want to do.”

Then his thoughts turn, with glee, to anonymous giving, saying to himself, “I’ll send [a turkey] to Bob Cratchit’s! rubbing his hands, and splitting with a laugh. “He shan’t know who sends it. It’s twice the size of Tiny Tim….”

“The chuckle with which he said this, and the chuckle with which he paid for the Turkey, and the chuckle with which he paid for the cab, and the chuckle with which he recompensed the boy, were only to be exceeded by the chuckle with which he sat down breathless in his chair again, and chuckled till he cried.”

Chuckled until he cried. How thin the edge between joy and grief. What a gift it is to be here. How precious in its finiteness. But here we are, dancing, able to bring joy to others. Here now, but not forever.

Rejoice!

Happy new year!

4 comments

  1. Matthew Squire · 28 Days Ago

    A great way to start the New Year.  Thank you Shari.  It was great to see you guys last night.  May you and yours have a blessed 2023. Matt

    Liked by 1 person

    • Shari Swanson · 28 Days Ago

      Great to see you, too! So much laughter. Good for the soul. I’ve missed you and Lynn. Wishing you a wonderful 2023!💕

      Like

  2. Vivian Abbott · 27 Days Ago

    I missed all your wonderful thoughts, Thank you in particular for this uplifting New Years piece. It filled my heart! Vivian Abbott

    Liked by 1 person

    • Shari Swanson · 27 Days Ago

      Thank you! I’m so glad you liked it. It has been a while since I’ve read A Christmas Carol, rather than watch a movie version, and I was entranced with the language. I must sit and reread. Dickens is one of my favorites!

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s