Happy New Years!

Happy New Year!

Of sorts.

Partying with the monks on NYE 2012

Partying with the monks on NYE 2012

I know the calendar says each New Year starts on January 1, and like most people, I celebrate that day. But as I’ve gotten older I’ve found other days scattered across the months that, to me, feel like the start of something new—if not exactly a year, than a period during which I can hopefully change a negative mindset and undertake new beginnings. Yes, yes, I know that technically I could do that any and every day, but life sometimes makes that feel daunting. Putting aside a few significant days seems to give me more motivation to affect that change (in theory).

first day of school

First day of school ever!

So what are these other New Year’s? Well, one is right around the corner, which is prompting this post. Even though it’s been more than 25 years since I attended school on the academic-year calendar, the coming of September always brings me back to my youth and the excitement that came with a new school year. (Yes, I was a nerd, thank you very much, and also lived several miles from my best baseball buddies). So, even though most school systems have pushed back the first day of school, to me this is when that year begins, and I still get that sense that new discoveries await me, new opportunities. And the start of the school year also signals that fall is approaching, and that, no matter where I live, is my favorite time of year.

The other New Year’s Day is actually the Half Year Day. For awhile now, July 1 has felt like a turning point in the year; I can reassess how well, or not, I’ve stuck to the resolutions of January 1 and see what modifications I should make for the six months to come. I think 7/1 took on added importance during my time in Chicago. I arrived there in 2004 on July 1, on a beautiful, cool day for summertime (I soon learned what summers there were really like), and headed back to CT on the same day in 2009. And nothing of significance happened between those bookend days…

The highlight of my birthday, 2013

The highlight of my birthday, 2013

The last of the faux New Year’s is my birthday, the Ides of March. Of course a birthday is important for anyone, and I’m sure I’m not the only person to mark it as a New Year’s Day. That one, though, has taken on a sadder cast of late, as the passing of time marked on that day just makes me feel old. And spending the last two out of three of them alone, perhaps more alone than on any birthdays before them, was truly depressing.

But I won’t let the bleak memory of that New Year’s Day spoil the one I’m celebrating this week. While I have not met all my expectations and resolutions from the real New Year’s Day of 2015 and the other two after it this year, this New Academic Year provides yet another chance to make changes. Life has not been pleasant of late, largely from my own doing. I hope to alter that over the rest of this year, and the ones to come. So, no party hats and streamers for this current New Year’s Day. Just the realization that I have the power to set goals and work toward them. Yes, any and every day.

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~ by mburgan on August 31, 2015.

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