The Impossible New Year’s Resolution

Joyce Hoffman

The year has almost gone and I don’t remember where it went. Some things, sure, like my sons visiting often, the Capitol insurrection, some say the end of the pandemic (actually, it’s nowhere close to being over). But I forget most of what’s happened. WHERE DID 2022 GO? 

We had an ice storm a couple of days ago, as did most of the country, making its way from west to east. I feel tired all the time and not in the holiday spirit of gift giving and the new year. I find my bed to be where I’m most comfortable, reading the latest Nelson DeMille book, The Maze, again. Sometimes, I doze off. 

The COVID symptoms are returning, not full-blown COVID, but fatigue and my nasal congestion is at an all-time high and this morning, the beginnings of a cough again with no fever. I’m waiting for it. Yeah, I’m in a bitchy mood. Who wouldn’t be! I’m going to get COVID-tested tomorrow if I don’t out to be false positive, or false negative. What a joke.

I don’t have any new year’s resolutions except for one, albeit impossible: I want to grow up again with the insight of a 40-year-old, a Wayback Machine (remember Mr. Peabody and Sherman from the classic Rocky and Bullwinkle Show?) set to 1953 when I was 5, living my life again, despite the awful events in my upcoming memoir, like choose better (and not better-looking) friends, select a cut-above husband (who wants to happily participate in my children’s activities), and raise my kids differently (they turned out fine despite my loose parenting). 

It took me too long to learn empathy and compassion for others. I don’t blame my parents because they learned from their parents, except for the fact my parents set themselves as role models and I learned from them. That old adage is one of the best: You can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family. 

I turned out all right, too, for the most part, except for goofy mistakes which I made, and just recently. But the mistakes got fewer as I got wiser. I once threw a surprise party for my husband and vacuumed meatballs that I dropped in my 20s and I learned. The vacuum repair guy said, “If I didn’t know better, those look like meatballs stuck in the vacuum.” I laughed along with him, until he said, “What are those things clogging your vacuum?” I said I didn’t know because it was my friend’s vacuum.” The things I did…. 

So I can’t give you my kitschy pictures above each of my top ten new year’s resolutions at the end of this year and the Wayback Machine never existed. I have to live with my mistakes though I have to tell you, the meatball story is my kids’ favorite.

So I will say, “Have a good year, better than the last three, the best place to celebrate the new year is at home, and become a vegan. No meatballs on the menu to drop although I want to try garbanzo bean meatballs. If you do drop the meatballs–vegan or not, Walmart has a deal on vacuums. 

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