Goodbye 2012

31 Dec

So this is Christmas, and what have we done? Another year over, and a new one just begun.”

(from Happy Christmas (War is Over), in case you hadn’t guessed.)

I’m in a reflective mood, what with it being Hogmanay. As a Scot I can’t help but think about the year that’s passed and the year to come, even though I know that all the gradations we put on time are just human constructs, and nothing significant really happens at midnight tonight. Still, it feels significant, and I think human beings need to break time up somehow, if only to give the illusion of a destination, of starts and finishes and progress in-between.

For the last few years I’ve been very glad to let the old year go, hoping that the new one would hold better things, and for the last few years I’ve been disappointed – until this year. This year has been good. It started off well, with my knowing that I was leaving my job, which I intensely disliked, to write full-time and look after my beautiful niece. It went on well, with the successful launch of my first novel, Leda (350 copies sold to date, not counting ebooks), and later a collection of short stories, Office Life and Death. I’ve evenA New Year's Trio just published another short collection specifically about New Year, A New Year’s Trio.

My husband has also become self-employed this year, and he’s enjoying it too. Financially it’s been a difficult year (Will this recession ever end? Not if George Osborne has anything to do with it, but that’s another story.), but personally it’s been great. A post from Read to Awake, which I follow, asked “what can you do now that you couldn’t do this time last year?”  I think that’s a pretty good viewpoint to take. This year I can play the tin whistle (not well, but I can knock out  a recognisable tune) and translate passages of Virgil’s Aeneid. That’s enough in itself to make me feel that I’m not stagnating.

I’m entering 2013 with mixed feelings, however. This year my sister goes on maternity leave, removing the steady income from babysitting which has made it possible for me to give up my job and write. Come the summer, things will have to change in some way, and as yet I don’t know what shape that will take. For the first time in a long while I’ll be sorry to say goodbye to a year. Twenty twelve brought me independence, hours of fun with my baby niece, creative success and lots more. Even the Olympics turned out to be pretty good, and it was the 100th anniversary of Albania’s independence (from the Ottoman Empire, since you ask).

Still, although 2013 is the unknown, I don’t think there’s any reason to fear it – and even if there is, I choose not to. Wherever I go, I go with God and with the support of my friends and family. I hope I’ll be just as sorry to say goodbye to 2013 in twelve months time.

“The year is dying in the night. Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.”

In Memoriam, Tennyson

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