Happy New Year! (On planting wishes and setting goals)

What my Spring should bring–“Private eyes” tulips.
Photo credit.

Today I planted 50 wishes. Well, tulips, actually. On this chilly but bright New Year’s day, I left the warm confines of the office where I’d been alternating between dissertation writing and organizing goals for the 2013. Resolved to actually get the bulbs I’d purchased several months ago in the ground, I tromped out with shovel, gloves, and trowel. Eventually covered in cold dirt, I realized that as I dropped bulbs into freshly unearthed troughs, I was praying. Praying for these suckers to actually bloom in a few months. Praying that the soil isn’t too dense. Praying that no (stupid) squirrels find my Spring finery a mid-winter feast. Praying that I’d done my preparations properly.

And then I realized how much that tulip-planting-praying thought process echoes life lately. Right now, midway through this final year as a doctoral student, I’m praying for tulips. Tulips being a successful dissertation defense, a good job, a stable outlook for the future. Have I prepared well enough? Are the “weather” conditions favorable? Will things be “coming up tulips” this Spring?


Celebrated New Year’s eve with my
bestie and her fam. Happy New Year!

This morning over waffles (not the waffles, just some recipe from the internet), I asked Mr. T what he wanted to do in the New Year. He rattled off new flying goals like attaining instrument and commercial ratings. He discussed a few job and around-the-house type things. And then he said he wanted to see me with a plan for the future. I nodded, recognizing how many of our mutual goals depend upon what I’ll be up to post-graduation and how much I thrive on having a plan. Then I admitted the anxiety I’ve been feeling (and apparently exuding!) about job prospects. (I’m certain I’ll be happier and easier to live with once I know what the hell I’ll be up to after May!)

In any case, I got to thinking about goals and resolutions. I’ve been through my typical New Year’s day ritual of goal setting (explained here and here). I’ve written 78 new (or re-upped) goals across four categories including the unsurprising “finish my dissertation” split out into 10 sub-goals, along with fun things like: “Take a photography class,” “find a go-to cake recipe,” “write every day,” “learn how to fly,” and (don’t be shocked) “plant tulips.” I’ve got lots of measurable, attainable tasks on my list along with a few less finite pursuits like “cultivate patience” and “be less messy.”

And I have hope.

I’ve done good work. I’ve learned a ton. I try every day (well, most every day) to be a better person. Whether or not my tulips bloom or I find a job right away, I’ll still be loved and happy. (Poor, but happy, right?)

So anyway. Hope your New Year is off to a grand start and that the next 364 days bring you joy, love and prosperity, and all that hopeful stuff we say at the beginning of the year.


P.S. The New Year could also bring you a $15 gift card to Amazon or Starbucks if you take my super short readership survey! Click here s’il vous plait.

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