A New Year About to Bloom

You know I love tracing the arc of things, and that the beginnings—of a calendar year, of the next year of life, of an academic year—always thrill and energize me, the nascence and potential, direction and speed, choices of attitude or circumstances or, if lucky, both. As this Saturday morning of a New Year’s Eve dawns bright and warming here in Austin, I’m thinking of the year past and the year forward, of what I’m hoping and planning, of what I can’t know of developments in the world and my own life that will surprise me, perhaps blindside me, in the months ahead. I’m saturated to the point of oozing with gratitude for the opportunity to live and to love at this weird time in history (but, really, when has it not been?!), full of wonder and awe and curiosity.
I’m sitting at my desk in a chilly house (the ball bearings in our furnace’s motor gave out during the latest Arctic blast that reached all the way down here to Texas), since last night’s blazing and radiating oak logs in the fireplace have settled into gray ash; I’m snuggled into a soft, thick, deep berry-colored sweater that my oldest daughter (in-law, but no need to get technical) gifted me for Christmas. R. ordered the parts necessary to repair the HVAC system, and he’ll use his superpowers to get it all back to working order today; yesterday, he did the DIY home job I hate most—re-caulking the shower’s seam where the walls meet the floor—and I’m wildly, inordinately relieved about the improvement. I’m also excited about a project to find and/or develop delicious recipes for fifteen of the most anti-inflammatory foods and use them as the core of R.’s and my eating as we continue to heal from COVID and dance with aging; I’m even more excited about the mountain of research and writing I’ll be exploring, scaling, and mapping for my doctorate.
Most of all, the people I love—their aches and dreams, their struggles and accomplishments, their disappointments and radiances, who and how and why they are—are present with me, in my heart and my mind, in all that I do and am. I don’t write in much detail about them—about you!—here, because your story is yours to tell, and because I hold your privacy and the intimacies of our relationships sacred, but every day, you hold the most meaning for me. May you have a New Year full of love, purpose, and joy, of an abundance of your own deepest desires.