Thursday, December 31, 2009
As One Dies, Another Is Born
Tomorrow a new day, month, year, and decade begins. As the 2000s wind down to their final night, and as 2009 stands in its last hours, I find myself amazed and a bit sad that this time is coming to an end. Everything in my life, everything of significance, everything of excitement and joy and tragedy, everything that has made me into who I am, happened in this decade.
It was when I left Dirty Town, when I went through high school, when I turned eighteen, when I got my license, when I had my first kiss, when I started college, when I entered adolescence and discovered myself. I was a teenager of the 2000s.
In a way, the passage of the decade has a sorrowful taste; it is final confirmation that the time of my generation's youth has passed. The era of our childhood is gone, leaving us with a new time in which we must go forward as adults. That sadness does not predominate, however, for while much has passed much is to come, and the greatest passages of my saga at least lie not in the wilting decade that will breathe its last tonight, but in the nascent one that will wail a newborn's cry with the morning's dawn, and in the years beyond it.
It has been my tradition on these New Year's Eves to reflect on the past, but that is inappropriate now. 2009 has been a year of liberation for me, the first year in which I made good on my promise to live differently. It is enough to say that, and then look forward to the action I will take, must take, in 2010.
If the ups and downs I've experienced since 2000 have taught me anything, it's that the moment you live in is precious, and that it can be lost. If a person squanders his present, it will one day become his past regret, as much of the 2000s became for me. I don't dwell on those mistakes, though, for dwelling is an error in itself, and diverts attention away from the current day.
I have overhauled my life, and my greatest goal as this new year and new decade start will be to continue in that vein, to persist in doing things that are new, things that I never thought I could try or accomplish, and to not let fear, that most crippling and limiting of all emotions, cow my efforts.
My specific resolutions for the New Year are four:
1. Taking greater care of my body, seeing to my health through improved diet and exercise, and improving my physical person even when that is difficult.
2. Making more of the tremendous gift that is my writing ability, and devoting the regular time to my projects that they require for completion.
3. Ensuring my future success and prosperity through excellent grades, participation in internships, and other actions that will help me secure a fulfilling career after college.
4. Pursuing with full devotion my passion for music and love for singing; for too long I've dreamt of but not labored toward achievement in this area, an area in which my vocal talent and ear-catching songs would enable me to do well. A year from now, as 2011 is rung in, I want to have made significant strides in music.
I can do it if I believe and work, as I can do many other things. I'm confined to nothing. An important era is ending, but I don't mourn it. A more important one begins.