A new year — looking forward, looking back

2010 is nearly at an end.  It is my custom, at this time, to look back over the last year and see what I can remember of it.  Which bits of it left a lasting memory?  What did I achieve in the year now gone?

Of course there are unpleasant memories in every year.  There is the endless treadmill of employment and earning, just to live.  I don’t need or want to review them.

Rather, I mean the things that added value to me.  I mean the things that made me feel happy — even if there was annoyance mixed in.  I mean the things that leave a sunshine in my memory. 

I am somewhat sorry to discover that, of the whole year, only a few days left any trace — the patristics conference in Durham, and a visit to Cornwall to see relatives and friends.  The rest of the year … well, I can give no account of it, other than just surviving.  Every day spent working, every evening tired and preparing a meal, slumping in front of the TV, reading some book, then off to bed, in order to rise and do the same.

This treadmill is the lot of us all, unless we make it otherwise.  The pressure of just doing what we have to do will crowd out everything else.

So at this time of year I also look forward.  What could I do this year?  What will I do with 2011?   I need to start to plan.  Because without a plan, it won’t happen.  Without a plan, I shall be just too tired to do more than routine. 

At the start of 2010 I did have a plan.  I was going to go to Syria.  But illness washed that out.  It might still be a problem this year.  But I still need a plan!

We only have so many years.   Use them!

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