Monday, December 31, 2012
I have wonderful memories of 2012: a reunion with friends from elementary and junior high school, revisiting the family farm and reconnecting with my Frazier relatives, a wedding in Memphis, my first opera at the Met, spending time with Jeannie in Scotland, experiencing energetic faith in South Africa, fabulous theatre (the winner: Peter & the Starcatcher), and the annual Bartow Family Christmas Gathering. Oh, and I lost 15 pounds.
But the best memories of the year center on my family, especially the time I've spent with my little grandson Liam, my daughter Kate, and my son-in-law Greg. Early in the year I got a whole week with Liam all to myself, as his parents took a much-needed vacation. Grandboy and I had a great time at the park and at Fernbank Science Museum, reading stories, and waking up with the birds. I've loved watching him grow and talk and learn. And no one can take away the times he's thrown his little arms around my neck and declared, "I love you so much, GrandMary!" Certainly, no year is bad that offers up that sort of thing, eh?
Still, I want to honor the losses of the past twelve months, too, by remembering and keeping them in my heart and prayers: a childhood friend lost his battle with pancreatic cancer, a young couple lost their baby daughter just as she was entering this world, 20 sweet children and 6 educators lost their lives in senseless violence. Yes, 2012 was a year of loss as well as a year of the wonderful, the loving, the magical. Perhaps 2013 will provide a fresh start for healing those losses.
I look forward to 2013. God willing, it will bring the safe birth of a healthy little granddaughter in May - more love, more memories to come. I look forward to seeing old friends, meeting new ones, reading never-before-read (by me) books, re-experiencing the seasons, trying new things I never thought I'd try, going places I've never been. New lang syne, in other words.
Here's the thing. We don't just get a fresh start once every January 1. We get a fresh start every single day, every single hour, every single minute. Don't put so much pressure on the calendar or yourself. Spend January 1 nursing your hangover, putting away your Christmas decorations, and eating your black-eyed peas and greens. There are good times ahead.
While you're celebrating auld lang syne, celebrate new lang syne, too. Happy New Lang Syne!