I am writing this bit while in a good mood, mostly because there is some lightbulb in the back of my mind that has popped back on just in time to gift me with an easy, hopeful day. Perhaps it was the three hour nap I took yesterday combined with an extra hour of sleeping in this morning (achieved via Curious George’s Christmas Special played in bed for two-year-old Elsa). To set the scene, (does anyone care about this or do I just read kinfolk too seriously?) there is pumpkin raspberry bread cooling on our teeny kitchen counter, rain falling outside in the backyard jungle, and Elsa and I are wearing matching grey sweaters. To qualify the scene: bread is from Trader Joe’s mix, there is definitely dog poop in said jungle, sweaters are generic H&M sweatshop, not knit by me. My going-on-six-months baby belly is just starting to get in the way of any chance I can sit comfortably, so I’m taking the time now to think about the past year before I don’t think about anything other than sleep ever again.
I recently heard a park-mom, a very nice and intelligent one, say that she still needed to lose “about two-hundred pounds” after the birth of her now two-year old twins. Five would probably be more realistic, but I’ve never been one for New Year’s Resolutions, being more of a lower-case new year celebration type. Autumn always feels more like the beginning of a new year to me than January does, and October tends to be my pensive, life-examining month. This being said, I make many little pacts between myself and I- or, when I’m feeling particularly changeable myself and my husband – throughout the year, pursuing or discarding changes in my habits and mind as the time flows. Many are neither realistic nor resolvable, but they nonetheless float through my mind and sometimes my conversations as though accomplishing these goals will bring peace to my family and the world. The more worthy ones might well help, others are probably less valuable. My prayer is that the worthy bits are what stick around through the next year. Here is a partial list – in no chronological order- from 2016.
Be less racist
Speak more gently
Be more empathetic towards people who do not live out their family relationships exactly like you do yours. (I.e. be less judgemental of husband’s family)
Never again watch TV during Elsa’s naps
Never let Elsa watch TV again
Go back in time and redo all the times you let Elsa watch TV.
7a) Sub-resolution: go to library more
8) Sew all of Elsa’s clothes yourself
9) Get rid of more plastic, go without or replace with natural fibers/ glass.
10) Meal plan regularly
11) Find way to combine making lots of money with barely working so you can still be stay at home mom.
12) Give up cow dairy
13) Give up wheat
14) Find motivation to make resolution to give up sugar
15) Write and submit at least one essay per month- this will maintain writerly motivation and potentially result in resolving #11
16) Let things go
17) Be nicer to my mom
18) Be nicer to my husband’s mom
19) Get over fear of the phrase “avocado bread” so you can actually make homemade avocado bread.
19 a) sub-resolution: post picture of avocado bread on Instagram. Feel good about self.
19) b) sub-resolution: make Instagram account more aesthetically trendy with similar posts to the avocado bread, potentially resolving #11.
20) Be more financially organized
21) Spend less money
22) Waste less time worrying about what other people are thinking about you.
23) Start an etsy shop
24) Remember to regularly take enormous doses of cod liver oil.
25) Love one another.