For years, as soon as my children could write, my family kept a tradition for New Year’s Day. Each of us would write down his or her personal resolutions – I prefer to say goals or dreams – for the year to come. As the mother (and the one who had the idea!) I sealed each envelope with the wax of a candle. Yes, I know, very old-fashioned. Even when the letters, year after year, were mostly typed and not handwritten anymore, I would still seal them. The following year, on New Year’s Day we would burn them in a ‘let’s start anew’ kind of spirit.
But children grow and go away, pursuing other dreams and paths and for the last two years the six of us hadn’t done our ‘resolutions’ together. On a personal level, I’m pretty sure each of us kept a wish list tucked in our head. But the small ceremonial had disappeared from our rituals.
And then this afternoon, my husband found a small stack of neatly folded letters: Our wishes for 2009.
Call me naïve or nostalgic but I found the letters moving as each was the proof of the unstoppable passing of time.
And as I was reflecting on ‘where does time go?’ my daughter, home from college, asked if we could sit together as we did for years and write our resolutions for 2013.
There is something silly but very human when we create our own small traditions. So tonight, before each of us goes on through 2013, we will sit and write down how we would like to live this New Year, still crisp and clean as fresh snow.
Happy New Year to You!