Beginning in June

New years resolutions always confuse me.  It’s not so much that I fail at executing them, so much as I never make them to begin with.

Not in January anyway.

I have a reason for that, though I have a feeling most of you will find me even more peculiar once my confession has been made.  Oh well, that was inevitable wasn’t it.

It is, you see, that when I was 11 years old I picked up an empty journal that my dear grandmother had given me and said aloud to no one in particular,

“I’m gonna start writing today, and I’m going to keep writing every night until the day God takes me home”

This was in June, June 17th 1993, to be exact.  For good or for bad I’ve kept that promise, and nearly 21 years later it’s become as natural to me as breathing.  It’s also left me with far too many journals to know what to do with, and a whole lot of reflections on who-knows-what.  I rarely go back and read anything, though when I do it’s rather surreal and somewhat haunting at times.  Being able to find any day of one’s life between the ages of 11 and 31 and read what was seen or thought or done that day is strange and sweet. Sort of like dreaming.

Consequently, I’ve also become the family’s historian, and expected to resolve any and all disputes on when something may or may not have occurred.  The trouble is, I don’t always record what others might find important, so in some cases the process sort of breaks down.  I’m writing about why a poppy flower holds such beauty, and they’re asking when uncle so-and-so bought a car.

No idea.

The habit has also put me on an insatiable quest for The Perfect Journal.  I haven’t found it yet, but when I do I’ll know it.

All that to say, my New Year’s day has been and will always be June 17th.  It’s when I turn the page, start afresh, and begin again.  There is something I like about that arbitrariness, it reminds me that any day (and every day) is new and beautiful, an untold blessing. Any day can be your New Year’s, there is no rule to that.  It’s not about a good year or a bad year, after all we’ll all fall and make mistakes and do things we don’t mean to do all the time.

Sorry to burst your 2014 bubble, but it’s true.

The real question is whether we’ll get back up, and what we’ll do with today.  That’s all we’ve really got, after all.

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