it’s a new year

Ah, the best laid plans. I mean to write but then, I don’t know…something comes up. Stress does amazing things to my guts. And the sadness. It just suddenly overwhelms. And how do I write about that? I don’t even want to read about that.

The holidays were in some ways harder than I anticipated. I tried to have a quiet, peaceful holiday. But the sadness kept smothering me.

Hamilton Wright Mabie (an American essayist) once raised a glass and said, “Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.” That is what I planned to write about. It is what this season is about to me. No matter what you believe, the holiday season is about sharing and being kind to each other.

No more, though. It’s not new, but don’t you think it’s gotten worse? People griping about coffee cups. People ranting about “Merry Christmas” yet again, because it’s not okay to be inclusive. Because the whole notion of love thy neighbor as thyself has apparently been eradicated from Christianity.

And all the horrible, horrible things in the news. You can’t even glance sideways at the news no less look at it head on. Mass shootings. Children. Police shootings. Wars. So very much hatred. And if we don’t have anyone immediate to hate, we make up problems and fears and hate people for things they haven’t done yet. And politics. I’m thinking about moving off planet.

It’s not all bad. We’re making some progress on the house and funny and happy and yes, sometimes sad memories come tumbling out with the stuff we are finding. I can’t keep everything. I don’t even want to keep everything. But wandering through the past is kind of interesting.

Moving on to a new year. Calvin here has it right. It’s a fresh, clean start full of possibilities. Why repeat the past? Why let the crazies ruin the day? Let’s go exploring.



10 thoughts on “it’s a new year”

  1. Zazzy,I understand your sadness ! Many big hugs to you ! ! !

    For the first time in years I noticed “Merry Christmas” signs in store windows again,not happy holidays or season’s greetings.

    Close to Christmas everyone owning or working at different local area stores,(including ethnic people ! ),said, “merry Christmas”,not happy holidays.Everyone replied “thank you” and “merry Christmas”,before they left the store. Where we live it always was and now is again a traditional greeting before Christmas,that’s all.

    We live in a multicultural country,ethnic groups from all over the world celebrate their beliefs openly,no one changes their names. I don’t belong to any religious group and respect other people’s religious beliefs and festivals,(even when roads on my way to where I want to or have to drive on that day are blocked to traffic).

    Vaisakhi Parade in April marks the New Year and one of the largest Vaisakhi parades outside India.Considered one of the most important festivals in the Sikh calendar, parades celebrating the event are held in Sikh communities around the world.

    That said,this year we didn’t celebrate anything.DS was very ill and is still ill,he is in a hospital in another city since December 1. We or I visit him almost every day.The road to recover will be very long and slow.I didn’t decorate/bake anything.

    A kind neighbor,(a retired doctor, I told him DS’s condition in early December),knocked on our front door while I was visiting DS in the hospital.He gave DH a plate with homemade cookies.He said with what we are going through emotionally we probably didn’t feel like baking. To me that is was Christmas is all about,caring about others and and kindness.

    I probably missed reading it before,are you selling the house ? Where are you moving to ? Thanks !


    1. I should probably clarify that I don’t hate “Merry Christmas.” I am talking about the crazy lady who chased after me at the post office screaming about how the Jews were trying to destroy Christmas because I said Happy Holidays. I choose to be inclusive. I sometimes say Merry Christmas, particularly in response to someone who wishes me a Merry Christmas. Plus it made me sad when a friend described what it was like to grow up Jewish in a world where Christmas is everything starting around Labor Day and to rarely even get a token mention of hanukkah. I don’t think we need to ban Merry Christmas, I just don’t think there is anything wrong with being more inclusive.

      I’m sorry to hear about your son. It is horrible whenever you’re dealing with illness but it seems even worse during the holidays. I hope he feels better very soon. And I hope that you are taking care of you during this stressful time.

      Yeah, we’ll be selling the house. I’m not sure where I’m going yet.


  2. I won’t lie, I was pretty grumpy about the whole Christmas thing this year. I have been surrounded, year after year, by people who just hate everything about it, and I had fought against that for so long.. this year I just kinda gave up and went with the grumpy, accepted that Christmas is not to be an awesome thing because nobody will allow it to be so, everyone will just be grumpy, and I did not even bother wrapping anything.

    I bought two gifts, a box of chocolates and a box of cookies, for my parents. I bought myself a Fitbit Charge HR, and so did The Other Half. I did not wrap my gift to myself, either. 🙂

    Actually it was kinda ok, despite my grumpiness about everyone being grumpy and sucking the joy out of my Christmas marrow bone. Next year I am thinking we should cancel it entirely. Zero presents. If there is to be a lunch, I will try to suggest we go out somewhere instead of Mum having to cook.


    1. You know, I think it’s okay to be honestly grumpy and probably healthier than trying to force yourself to be jolly. I try not to suck other people’s joy out of the season, but I didn’t go out of my way to be happy. Mostly I just said Merry Christmas back because it’s not fair to dump how rotten this year has been on others.


      1. I agree with you Zazzy. I’m not much for this time of year, never try to pretend otherwise, but won’t intentionally be a Christmas humbug. Many people who I know worry more about being left out of the group than being true to themselves, so they fake a jolly Christmas attitude. Seems wacko to me, but that’s what they do.


        1. Few of us really want to be the humbug – though I’ve known a few who seriously want to bring everyone else down – but I don’t see the point of faking it. Well, except perhaps around the kids. Here’s hoping for a better 2016.


  3. I’m like Ally Bean. I take what I like from the season and try to ignore the rest, although it can be difficult at times. I think a lot of the “cheer” is fake, and the way people treat each other at the holidays(I include ALL OF THEM) can take away from any joy. That said, I do mostly what I want at Christmas and because of that (and my lowered expectations) it was a decent to good holiday. However, the news and people’s attitudes about a variety of things have been depressing. I agree 100% with you, Zazzy!


    1. Michael Symon commented on the Chew yesterday that he is no longer going to read the comments to news articles. THAT’s my problem. No more comments for me. I already check to see that the “news” is from a legitimate source since I have friends who think any source is a good source. Now I am not allowed to read comments because that’s what really upsets me. People are idiots.

      I agree with you and Ally. Normally, I do what I want, decorate as much as I feel like, and this year, I made a Christmas lasagna. It was unfortunate that my stomach had decided it wasn’t willing to eat that but I have it frozen and will eat it eventually.


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