“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” ~ Gandalf, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, J. R. R. Tolkien
I woke up this dreary, grey morning with the word “Time” in my head. Unsurprising, perhaps, it’s New Year’s Day, after all; a celebration based entirely around the passage of time. But I was intrigued at its presence as my first waking thought, so I followed the white rabbit into the wonderland of my brain and I stumbled across a lyric from an old favourite of mine…
“Time is a valuable thing,
Watch it fly by as the pendulum swings,
Watch it count down to the end of the day,
The clock ticks life away…”
In The End by Linkin Park had my best friend and I going giddy over Chester Bennington, and I listened to the Hybrid Theory album on repeat for weeks, but the true meaning of the song was entirely lost on us at 14 years old.
If you know the song, you know it’s not one that considers time favourably. It scrutinises our insatiable need to live life by the second, lost in a perpetual cycle of decision after decision to the point where we’ve abandoned all meaning and enjoyment of the moment we’re in. A sobering thought to begin the year.
So, I challenged the negativity of that way of thinking by deciding that’s not how I will treat today, that’s not the energy I will bring into 2020 with me. Perhaps those worries will creep in on other days and if they they do, I’ll tackle them accordingly, but in the words of Bianco Del Rio, not today, Satan!
There’s something pivotal about 1st January. We all feel and acknowledge it, even if we choose not to mark the occasion with any grandiosity. It’s a reset, an opportunity (or maybe just an excuse) to assess ourselves and invite positive change into our lives. We reflect on our journeys and our decisions so far. We talk about resolutions, love lists, intentions, and adventures. We join gyms and activity clubs. We update our CV’s and sign up for lessons. We change our diets and we change our mindsets. Some we will stick to, some we won’t, and we do it all in the name of time.
But when the stroke of midnight carries us into a new decade, we’re invited into a much deeper realm of reflection. There’s something poignant about the passing of 10 whole years and looking back over the many shades of ourselves. It can be terrifying, enlightening, amusing, disappointing, fulfilling… and often those are just our outfit choices!
When I look back over my 20s, I find a multitude of breathtaking highs and unfathomable lows. I hit rock bottom not too long ago and it would have been easy to let that be the over-arching theme of my life, let it dominate who I am today, but I’ve experienced so much more than just that blip on my radar:
I married my soul mate.
I watched my best friend marry hers.
All four of our babies joined our family.
I became an Auntie (again) seven times over.
I’ve watched many dear friends marry and start their families together.
I’ve met people who would become some of the most important in my life today.
I’ve travelled to places that took my breath away.
I won an award for my achievements in my insurance career.
I set myself up as a self-employed makeup artist and singer.
I secured a publisher for my book.
If I can achieve all that whilst discovering who I am and navigating the deep caverns of mental health, just think what I can achieve with direction and purpose… just think what we can all achieve…
I wish you all the happiest of new years and I pray that Time is kind to you, always.
Love and light,