2010 / by Christina Rosalie

meI like the way the world looks now: tender, undercover, monochrome. I like the way this month starts off in sleep: the longest nights, the shortest days. I like the way we hurtle down hillsides on sleds; the way driving home from a New Year’s Day party with friends we saw five trees illuminated by the light of a car dealership, each branch crowded with the black silhouettes of sleeping crows.

I like how anything can happen before it does, now, at the beginning of a new year; and also looking back, considering the pulse and tremolo of the year gone by.

I like how it’s always possible to feel at the cusp of something grand at the start of a new year. Like there’s a chance for anything to happen, and everywhere all over the world people are throwing themselves towards their lives with renewed gusto.

People are picking words, and I like that. Looking back, I’d like to say that last year’s word was cocoon, because it was a dreamy, blurry, nestled year of slow motion, present tense stumbling; of new baby love and making ends meet. It was a domestic year. A quiet year. A year of sustaining; of inward growing. Now I'm ready for real action.

I want accomplishment and tangible returns. I want the satisfaction of crossing things off my list. Some years I've had heady, dreamy goals. This year it’s all about the down-to-earth and practical. It’s about getting things done. Enough of next year and sometime and when the time is right.

It’s the beginning of a decade. Time to get things started off on the right foot.

Non-negotiable: Financial stability, daily joy, and finishing my novel manuscript. The rest I'll put up on this year's list at the end of the month.

What is non-negotiable for you this year?