We make resolutions and rarely keep them. We party like its 1999. But really, is New Year's Eve that much different than any other midwinter night when we need to inject a little life into the dark of winter?
Its another day. A Tuesday, this year. And I am getting to the point in my life where I truly question the point of it. Its almost as bad as birthdays; 47? Its just like 37 but with more arthritis. My reaction to NYE 2012? "Where the FUCK did 2011 go? Or 2010 for that matter?" We get older and time picks up speed and one day we were thirty and woke up the next and we were fifty and trying to pay for college for the kids who were just five last week.
I don't get the point of New Year's resolutions. Can't I just decide to do things at any old point in the year? Does it make them less important if I didn't make them New Year's Eve? The day I listened to "Landslide" while watching my baby girl in her high chair and decided I needed another baby, wasn't that a bigger day than NYE? The day SG and I held hands in front of our parents and friends and told everyone we were a "THANG" - wasn't that a bigger day?
The turn of the century, sure, that was a biggie. I'd moved to New Jersey then, my ex and I were in our apartment, a year away from buying our first house and then immediately getting "in the family way" with Amazon Girl. We must have listened to Prince tell us how he was partying like it was 1999 a thousand times the week prior. I don't even remember now what we did... everyone was waiting for Y2K to make the world stop turning, and like every other apocalypse that hasn't materialized (Big shout-out to the Mayans!), it ends up being somewhat forgettable. Except for my friends who moved to an island somewhere and built a house off the grid because, you know, pending apocalypse. And when it didn't happen, he, who was certain this was IT, went a little cuckoo, and she said goodbye to a chapter in her life and went forth to kick some ass.
And let's talk about the folly of going out for NYE if you're neither (a) single or (b) childless. Seriously, its just not feasible. You either have to have the party at YOUR house and hope your kids get at least a few minutes of sleep while the adults get their freak on, or you have to pay a highly-in-demand babysitter three times what she normally gets to watch your kids, which leaves you about two drinks worth of cash in your pocket, then you get to fend off the drunken drivers all the way home and hope you don't, in your sober and self-protective state, do something stupid while driving by an officer which then necessitates you proving just how boring you are because you are the only sober person exiting a party or bar on NYE.
It really just better to stay home, order pizza, and try to stay awake long enough to bitch about the horrid lack of talent on TV and how dumb all those people are to stand in the freezing air in Time Square just to watch a well-lit orb do a shabby pole dance.
The important days, they don't need a calendar reference or a national holiday to matter. They are the days when your son asks your friend for riding lessons - all by himself and of his own volition. They are the days when you watch your incredibly proud husband stand on stage to put his son's officer's eupalets on his Navy uniform. They are the days when you have the perfect ride on your horse, the perfect day at work, the best...nevermind....with your spouse or partner, the day you had an epiphany you didn't even see coming, the day your daughter needs her first bra and the many many nights you tuck your kids in bed and they hug you 'round the neck and sleepily declare their love. The days you get to spend enjoying your parents and laughing with them over memories of the past and the follies of the present. They are the days you feel the presence of God, the days you feel the smallness of the scale of your life against the wide width of the clamoring world, the days you drink in the sunlight and are grateful for one more moment of a life so sweet it hurts.
NYE. Fun, to be sure. A chance to kick up our heels and shake off the past, or to try to catch up on some much-needed sleep while rude neighbors shoot off lawn cannons. A chance to kiss your date while fireworks burst in a dazzling array and a chance to pretend you can really change overnight into someone who eschews ice cream and goes to the gym five days a week.
To me? Its just another Tuesday.
Every single day of the year is a chance to start over. We need not limit ourselves to one day in January to try to become the better angels of our nature.