— Shakespeare, Macbeth (Act V, Scene V)
I have things to say about the New Year but I’m going to say them slowly over the coming weeks and months. Today is a day of rest. This week, time for settling children into a new year.
This year I plan to both slow down and speed up, hopefully in the manner of Cassiopeia in Ende’s beautiful children’s novel, MOMO. For me, 2016 was about running two businesses, volunteering, writing a lot of science but insufficient fiction, being injured, healing, supporting family, accepting support, and galloping between the children’s friends and my own. It all needed to be done but in doing it I was too busy to dedicate myself to any one thing, so they were all only achieved at maintenance level.
2017 calls for fruition of some things, culling of others. I have a novel to finish and submit. I have short drafts to be finished or archived. I have career decisions to make. I have valued friends whom I rarely see. There are people who have helped me, to whom I owe a debt of gratitude and a return of the same loyalty. People whose friendship I would value deeply, if only we had the time to talk instead of running past one another with all-too-cursory yelps of hello.
Meanwhile, I have time thieves — inbox clutter, house clutter, mwah-darling relationships that wouldn’t withstand anything more demanding than shared cake, and awful habits. (Twitter, cough.)
2017 will be a year of distilling things down to soul and meaning — work that holds value or legacy, people who bring something genuine to the moments we share, spaces between tasks, parenting that sometimes involves simply being with my children, enjoying one another’s company and unfettered by goals or organised activity, and more sleep than I’ve been getting.
(It is actually possible to get enough sleep these days, right? Plan B: better coffee.)
I’ll bring these things to the blog, one at a time. But slowly, this year. Something about 2017 already speaks of results happening more quickly for tasks being done at a gentle, resilient plod.
And in all things, peace.
Happy New Year.