Here we are again. December 31. New Year’s Eve. Many will go to parties, or celebrate in Times Square (Brrrr!!). I will be at home with my family, watching the reverie from the comfort of our home. Together, my kids and I will observe our favorite New Year’s Eve Tradition together.
NYE is a time to reflect on the year coming to an end, as well as look forward to the coming year. Frankly, 2017 was just awful, and I’m more than happy to bid it adieu! Which brings me to our New Year’s Eve Tradition.
The kids and I each make three lists. First, things we accomplished or are happy about from the past year. Second, we make a list of the things that happened in the past year that were not so great, the things we are happy to put behind us. Finally, we make a list of the things we are hopeful for in the coming year. Not resolutions, just things we’d like to see happen.
It’s important for me to note that all three lists are absolutely confidential. Each person writes their lists for their own eyes only. Honesty and candor are central to this tradition, and I would never ask my kids to share their lists with me. Jack usually does anyway, though!
The central part of our New Year’s Eve Tradition is next, and it is focused on the second list, the one that lists the bad parts about the year just past. We take our lists, crumble them, or rip them up. Then, we take them outside and put them in a glass bowl or vase, and set them on fire!
It’s beautiful and incredibly cathartic. We sit together, and inevitably smile as we watch the bad memories go up in flames. We talk about our great memories as the bad ones go up in smoke. When they burn out, we go back inside together, free from the past (if only symbolically), and ready to ring in a new year.
A new year brings 365 new opportunities. I hope your year brings untold joy. Bring on 2018!!