Midnight vis-a-vis One Second Past

Lake Erie Sunrise

I’m really getting tired of realizing my epiphanies only happen because I’m aging. But as I approach the half-century mark, I’m finding how much hindsight affects perspective. Half-century. My mind has a hard time wrapping itself around that; my knees, though, bring me back to reality.

Once upon a time, I would have found it unthinkable not to be out with friends on New Year’s Eve. Singing Auld Lang Syne, drinking too much beer (mixed with the shot du jour), and watching the ball drop to bring an end to another year. Our NYE celebrations were all about the last night of the year, and we only regarded the next day as rehab.

This year, I find myself at home watching Netflix with my son and wishing my wife didn’t have to work. I’m indifferent about the ball counting down the end of the year, and I find myself prepared to celebrate tomorrow, not tonight. It’s all about perspective.

Sunrise…Sunset

I used to love to watch the sunset. When I was seven years old, I saw the sunset over the Grand Canyon, and the image has stayed with me, since. It was awe inspiring, and I spent every subsequent sunset looking for the same beauty. Somewhere along the line, though, I realized how much I would rather see the sun rising than setting. I also began watching for the moon to come over the horizon rather than looking at what was behind me. I realized there was something spiritual about new beginnings.

Autumn used to be my favorite time of the year. I still love fall, but it signals the beginning of the end. Don’t misunderstand, I appreciate — now more than ever — the need for coming full-circle. I just prefer the beauty of new blooms and green which can only be described as spring. New, not old. Green, not brown. Perspective.

It’s been a rough year, and while so many people may be happy it’s nearly over, I find myself with a different viewpoint. I’m less happy about 2017 ending, and I’m more happy about 2018 beginning.

For years, I’ve said the words “Happy New Year!” and really just meant “whew…we made it through another one.” This time, when I say it, I’ll be thinking of the sunrise and the new day that follows; I’ll be thinking of blades of grass glimmering with the prettiest shade of green imaginable, welcoming a new spring; I’ll be thinking less about December 31st and more about January 1st.

Beginnings.

Perspective.

Happy New Year!