It’s the early hours of January 6th 2016, so I haven’t written since last year. It feels like longer.
I have a draft from New Year’s Eve that I didn’t finish. I can’t remember why but then I did drink two bottles of Bombay Sapphire over a week and half at home so it’s hardly surprising that my normally (these days) alcohol-free brain cells can’t hold on to much.
I am relieved that Christmas is over. I have an urge to proclaim a law by which all festive ornamentation should be securely deposited in attics and dusty boxes under beds or on top of wardrobes by December 28th. New Year’s is the last hurrah; the last excuse for a piss up before Dry January kicks in (a modern calendarial phenomenon like Movember) and the biggest disappointment out of the whole 365 days because disappointment is, actually, all around.
I could go into detail about my Christmas and if you’re Irish, that’s what everyone will ask you until the middle of January:
“Did ye have a nice Christmas?”
“Ah, grand, yeah, quiet. And yourself?”
“Lovely thanks, quiet as well. Back to reality now anyway.”
My Christmas was fine. Lovely at times, but too long. I should’ve come back to my own house sooner. In fact, I think I’m getting too old for this crap of “going home for Christmas”. I have my own home and I would dearly love a Christmas in it. I should’ve read more and we should have played more games together. If the weather had been better I would’ve taken the dogs to the beach more but all it did was rain. I got lovely presents including a beautiful glass sculpture of a boat from my godmother which proudly sits on my desk and a free standing mixer from my parents which, while being a useful and longed for addition to my kitchen, also has the bonus of being strangely soothing as its whisk whirrs hypnotically, drowning out the screaming to do list in my head.
And that to do list: how did I ever manage to get anything done while I was working full time/ a single parent? I feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day and I don’t even have to go to work. Although, I wonder am I creating tasks for myself because I’m desperately avoiding being in my own head and endlessly chasing productivity? However, when I was working full time, everything besides my school work went to shit so maybe I just didn’t get anything else done.
Now, I’m getting on top of things: my finances (it’s pretty time consuming telling banks that you have no money to give them); fitness (even if I have to pump myself full of glucosamine); my parenting (so far Scandi remains well fed, watered and talking to me) and of course, my notoriously unmanageable mental health. I ran out of Venlafaxine for two days while I was at home. Whether it was that or cabin fever, the meltdown on Sunday could be heard through the hundred year old concrete walls as I bashed pots and pans around – they refused to fit neatly into the cupboard, damn argumentative cookware -and screamed and cried with utter frustration with myself for not being… like everyone else. Or how everyone else seems to be.
There really is nothing like the ubiquitous GO ON, INDULGE YOURSELF, IT’S CHRISTMAS and then the verbal and visual bombardment of NEW YEAR, NEW YOU (implying that you didn’t deserve to treat yourself at Christmas at all – nothing like a bit of guilt to sell a few low fat yoghurts) to make you feel like you need to change everything about yourself, right now.
I made a sort of list of resolutions, in the notes on my phone. One of them was to buy a nice new journal, which I did. In this journal I planned to write my proper list of resolutions, which I have not yet done. It was not to be a diary for writing my incessant to do lists or appointments with mental health professionals (it’s hard to keep track when you have as many people to moan to as I do), but a journal for ideas and quotes; doodles and interesting thoughts. Problem was I didn’t have an interesting thought for the first week of ownership of said new journal and when I finally worked up the courage to scribble more than my name in it tonight (after a particularly gruelling Hot Yoga class which must have opened more than my hips), all that my pencil scribbled was “my handwriting is weak and ugly and unsteady” and the word LONELINESS in big blocky capitals.
I, like so many others I’m sure, pour so much hope into Christmas to be the magical centrepiece of our year and then, when Christmas just sort of happens and ends, we focus on how this year will be OUR YEAR! We’re going to do x, y and z and be 1, 2 and 3 and it’s going to be as satisfying as a kale and chia smoothie after a 10K run. Goals! Kick this year’s ass! Be the change! Out with the old and in with the new, improved, skinnier, fitter, thriftier, less cynical, earlier rising, clearer skinned, organic, clean eating, friendlier ME! But then, about 3 days in, you realise that you’re still as fucking tired as you were last January and you’re probably not going to write that book/ do a triathlon/ eat only free range meat/ go teach in the developing world for a year/ stop being a miserable bitch anyway and you go ahead and bake two batches of chocolate cupcakes with salted caramel icing and stay up till 2.15 am writing a dismal blog post about New Year’s being a dose of shite.
On that note, happy blah blah 2016.
The picture is the famous journal.