For me, New Year’s Day has always been a formality. Years are nothing more than arbitrary numbers, in all honesty. 1998, 2003, 2014 – what’s the difference really?
Years are no reference point. Up until my second year in college, the grade was important, not the year. A school cycle started in September.
As I transitioned to life as a part time student, the point of reference changed to where I lived, where I worked, which songs were popular, which project I was designing – none of which follow haphazard calendar years.
Years have no personality. There is no twenty-fourteen feel. Life’s traumas, triumphs, and defining periods rarely begin or end at New Year’s Day.
Spring has always been the time for a new beginning for me. Spring is where the flowers come back, where the leaves return. We feel good and spend more time outside. The doorstep of a brutal winter and the onset of post-Holiday blues never seemed like an appropriate time to reflect or celebrate or plan to make a change.
That’s why New Year’s Eve 2015 is so odd for me. It does feel significant.
Perhaps it is writing occassional posts about Plainfield’s electoral landscape, serving on the Cultural & Heritage Commission, and the fact that I will be sworn in to the Board of Education in a few days. In this world of civic involvement, the year carries extreme significance.
For the first time, the year – not songs, projects, and apartments – is the primary point of reference. Years are the beginning and end of terms, and of budget cycles.
I also have a very major life change – dare I say, a resolution – whose timing just happens to work very well with this once arbitrary point between one year and the next.
So yes, I say to you Happy New Year!
This time I understand the meaning.