The end of the year is always a solemn time for me. I settle into a quiet place where I contemplate the year that has been, trying to decide what stays and what goes. I am not quite sure what brought on this anniversary of contemplation but I suspect it has something to do with the fact that as I was growing up, Christmas time was a time of stark contrast between what I was supposed to be feeling and what my reality was.
You see, December was my worst month of the year. The circumstances that surrounded this month (school holidays meant that I had to be home; a home that was not particularly pleasant) meant that as the rest of the world was claiming that this was the happiest time of the year, I couldn’t wait for it all to come to an end. That also meant that I eagerly looked forward to the coming year and its promise of change for I never gave up hope that the next year would better than its predecessor.
So for me, a tradition of my own formed. In December, I would bare my teeth, hang in there and wait for the pain to end. Come January, I would have shed my old skin and entered into a place of reinvigoration and renewal. Therefore, although January may sometimes feel like the Monday of the year, requiring a lot of effort to get back into the swing of things, I completely and enthusiastically embrace this month as to me, it feels like a much needed breathe for a drowning soul.