Snip. Snip.

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I sat alone at a bar two hours before midnight on New Year’s Eve.  I watched couples and groups of friends in their fancy attire, clinking jubilant glasses; their laughter as lively as their libations.  I watched Times Square, already an hour into 2016, in full party mode on the TV above the bar, and as I nibbled the salt off of the rim of my margarita, I couldn’t help but wonder, what in the hell kind of holiday hullabaloo is New Year’s even about?

We spend exorbitant amounts of money to participate in parties rife with high expectations, bad champagne, and usually devoid of any significant payoff.  We make resolutions that last for 2.5 days, or like mine, which don’t actually kick in until January 2nd, because you’re so hung-over after the New Year’s Eve party that all good behavior need not apply on New Years Day.

Now, don’t worry.  This isn’t a doomsday story of a sad, troubled girl sitting at a bar, spending New Year’s drinking all alone.  I spent the next 48 hours with new friends and it was the best two days I have had in a long time.

But I did wonder, where did the traditions come from? The celebrating? The resolutions? The shedding of the old and embracing the new…and so I asked the Oracle. Otherwise known as Google.

In pre-Christian times, based on the Julian calendar, the first of January honored the Roman god, Janus.  After which, January was named.  Janus was the god of gateways, doors and new beginnings.  He was depicted as having two heads, one that looked forward and one that looked backwards.  Which makes sense when you contemplate the lyrics of Auld Lang Syne, the New Year’s song which poses the question: “should old acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind?” No matter what changes life brings, what and who do we choose to remember?  What do we leave behind and what do we take with us?

Now based on the modern, Gregorian calendar of Christendom, January 1st was the day Jesus was named and then circumcised.  Talk about shedding! Talk about a day NOT to celebrate: get your dick cut off and have your fate sealed as the Son of God, (talk about nepotism) doomed to persecution, public ridicule and a whole lot of splinters.  Leave it up to the Christians to celebrate a day of foreskin removal and penile mutilation as a sign of hope and possibility.

Now has anybody clued into the fact that Jesus was named Jesus (snip, snip) on the exact same day, which previously celebrated the god, Janus?

Jesus. Janus. Um…hello??? Perhaps the whole thing was a typo all this time!

BOOM!!! I just blew your mind. Da Vinci Code Unplugged!

What I’m getting at (or not getting at) is that everything in my world falls under the category of “new” right now.

It’s really hard to start over. I’m too old for this shit. I was always the new kid. I used to crave being the new kid. I used to move all the time; saw it as an opportunity to re-invent myself.  To be a better version of myself.  But I didn’t come here for that.  I would like, for a time, a little predictability.  Stability.  A comfort zone that feels like home.  Something or someone to stick. A sense of self that feels solid.  And so I feel resistant to all of this newness, because I didn’t ask for this and I certainly didn’t seek it out.

I just moved into a new apartment, have a new job, meeting new friends, flying to New Mexico next weekend (to see an old friend) and let’s not forget, a new studio; my dream and my focus for the last FIVE years is opening at the end of February. Whether I like it or not, newness is something I must accept.  And while newness is supposed to be exciting, fresh and exhilarating, mostly, I feel a little scared and intimidated.

Newness is inevitable. And I have to figure out how to move forward (snip, snip) and let old acquaintance be forgot.

I choose what to remember and what to carry forward. And maybe that is a new twist to an old story that simply changes everything….

 

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