Home > prose, Random Musings, Writing > On New Year’s Eve

On New Year’s Eve

A year can teach many things. As suspected, or learned, they are not all easy lessons. In fact, if you are paying attention, few are easy. But each has its place, a reason for being, a story to tell, a wisdom to impart

Grab that wisdom for all your worth, even if it merely takes the form of acknowledging its existence. See it for what it is, without looking away. Flinch, if you have to, but steady yourself. Learn the things you that are before you to be learned. Otherwise, what’s the point of living? Growth is essential to being.

This year has not been an easy year. It has taught me many things, some of which I found I did not want to learn. As a kid, my first line of defense was always to bury my head in the sand, like an ostrich. I try very hard not to do that anymore, because it doesn’t serve a purpose. I’m not braver. I’m just wiser. Sometimes, wisdom leads to bravery. Sometimes, the opposite is also true.

I’ve always been a fan of mistakes. That kind of action is how one learns. If we don’t allow ourselves the luxury of trying – knowing that failure might happen – then we are, in a way, quite dead. We’ve stopped growing and learning. That is a living death. It is a sad thing to see, and I’ve seen it – though, I’ve not personally experienced it.

But mistakes. Sometimes, they hurt. Sometimes, they are a thing quickly healed. Sometimes, they walk as our shadow. But we need them. They show us who we are and who we’d like to be. They prove we are reaching for something beyond our grasp, and we’re fond of limbs and leaping with eyes wide open. They show up that we’re alive, and sometimes foolish. But being foolish is preferably to living timid and scared.

Live wildly, within your limits. You know what those limits are. Do not allow others to set your boundaries, because you are the one who lives within them. Dance often, sing loudly – and make things. Growing up, I could not sew on a button. Now, with my grandma’s sewing kit, I can do much more than that. It’s a small thing, surely, but I can now fix and mend. Considering how often I break things, this is good thing.

I believe in second chances. Sometimes, thirds and fourths, because I have a big, stupid heart. And I basically want to hug the world. This is not always possible or wise, and I know (now) how to hold back when necessary. I am not always good at it, but I’ve learned how to do it.

This year, I’ve written things I never thought I could. I’ve created people out of nothing and watched as they made their lives in my head. In another context, that would be crazy. Writing is, after all, a beautiful kind of madness – and even with a heap of short stories that I’m not *quite* sure what to do with, I’m proud of them. I’ve learned from them. One of them even became a manuscript. I know that when I query it, I will hold my breath. I will send it out and see what it is made of. I will drink copious amounts of coffee, make tipsy cherry fudge (recipe courtesy of Kat Howard), and I will try.

That is the best you can do: try. Sometimes, it is all you can do. Don’t let anyone stop you from trying, or loving, or laughing, or falling, or making a fool out of yourself. Fools are wiser than you think, because they dance out into the open – while others are afraid.

For this coming year, I wish you magick. With a k, because that is the bloody right spelling. I wish you laughter, love, art, joy, and as many mistakes as you can handle. I wish you relentless love, wild moments, and kisses that make your knees quake. I wish you sweet smiles, kind words, and enough inspiration to make you nearly burst.

Much love.

Categories: prose, Random Musings, Writing
  1. December 31, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    awww, this is very nice! i wish you inspiration to write and not be afraid to post it. send out those query letters girl! i believe in you and remember that even if you get a lot of rejection letters, it’s part of being a writer and doesn’t mean anything. write another letter! here’s to an insipirational 2012!

    • December 31, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      I echo the comments made by butterflyxwings. You are an inspiration, Ali! Connecting with you has been one of the highlights of my 2011. XO ~ B.

  2. December 31, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    Happy New Year, Ali! May 2012 be like a really big, shiny present that just keeps getting better the more you unwrap it.

  3. January 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Happy happy! May all your dreams come true in 2011 and all the years to come, dear Ali!

  4. January 1, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Happy New Year Ali! I echo every sentiment of this blog. For me, life is about (maybe) hopeless dreams and the desire to improve and knowing that I’ll die having at least tried. Having read several of those short stories you mentioned, I know that they are worth hanging on to and something you should be wildly proud of. I’m keeping my fingers crossed super-tight that your query goes well; you deserve it. And lastly, fools dancing in the open reminds me of Phoebe running and it makes me happy. Cheers to a fantastic 2012!

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