an everyday new year

Photo by Hai Nguyen on Unsplash

unpolished thoughts 1/1/19

happy new year.

Although it doesn’t serve us to sleep late every day, there is something instructive about not setting an alarm every now and then.

You wake up and discover how you feel after your body gets the rest that it wants.

The masters of life already understand how to give themselves this gift on a daily basis.

How would it feel if you felt like this every morning when you woke up, and also woke up at the hour you wished?

It’s instructive also to sometimes make breakfast into a gourmet affair, taking all the time necessary in the kitchen to boil the potatoes, then put them in the frying pan, eventually adding the chopped onions, and the kale at the very end. In between, cumin, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon juice.

And scrambled eggs.

And on the table not only ketchup, but a variety of hot sauces.

This morning I played a small role in this experience, admiring the work of our lead chef, and trying to remember a few pointers for later.

Then I witnessed eleven mouths being fed. The conversation was dominated by the four teenage boys that celebrated the New Year with a sleepover and multiple movies.

This breakfast ended at lunch time.

Still, what if, on mornings when the agenda is tighter, we could still have collaboration, learning, community, and camaraderie as we nourish ourselves?

As the day unfolds, many here will go for a hike. It’s not a weekend, but it’s a holiday, so there is space in the day to enjoy fresh air, natural beauty, movement in the joints, the opportunity to think expansively.

But tomorrow there is space too, isn’t there? If we make space for it, surely there is.

I will, in fact, do just a little bit of work today. I’ll visit a man who lives in his bed 365 days a year. He is a gifted painter and also the survivor of two strokes.

I visit him regularly to dialogue with his possibilities, exploring movement in the range of his comfort, and looking for clues to what will open new doors for him. In his case, it doesn’t seem right that I should “take the day off”. If anything, on a holiday, he deserves the company.

But then again, why shouldn’t every single day be a day to think about what the people we care about deserve?

Those boys – and one sister – are now bouncing on a trampoline outside. As I write, a dog is being walked, and young children are playing a game with their mother and father one floor above me.

My own daughter is with her mother in another country.

I spoke with her last night and she told me all about the meal they were going to eat and how late they were going to stay up. It took us a couple of days to get our timing right and connect, but luckily we did. We got to wish each other Happy New Year and say “I love you.”

There is nothing particularly different about New Year’s Day than every other day except for the flip of the calendar and the intention that we all bring to observing that moment.

What if each day was filled with such intention?

Why shouldn’t we include the possibility that every day holds the potential to start something new?