The remaining hours

What to do in the remaining hours of this year?

It seems that most people spend them either getting drunk or (most of the time: and) reminiscing the past year. It´s weird that even though there are “let´s recap the whole year in 60 minutes like it´s a completely new idea and no one has ever done that at the end of any year before”-shows on TV and everyone seems to shoot fireworks even though it´s still bright out (I leave the dirty references to you here, even though it has crossed my mind when I walked down the street and saw the guys shooting fireworks as if Mayan revelations came 4 years too late and there will, indeed, be no tomorrow) that I´m finishing the rest of the work that I managed to successfully ignore for the past week.

I mark two more exams, designed make-up exams for those students who didn´t show up on the regular exam days, re-organized my desk and spent about an hour cleaning the apartment. And I found this quite cathartic. Much more cathartic than reminding myself of all the stupid shit I´ve been through this past year. Still, I find myself thinking about the year gone by. I´m not sure if it´s old age (kidding) or if I´m just getting tired of all this, but I don´t feel like celebrating 2015.

It´s not you, 2015, it´s me. We´ve had a rocky relationship and you know that I didn´t like you most of the time. Quite frankly, I wished that you would pass as quickly as possible and I´m happy to report that, in retrospect, I do think fondly of you, because you have actually granted me that one wish. You went past me in a blur, so quickly that I sometimes felt that same disorienting feeling that you get when you whirl around for about a minute and then try to stand still. Surely, I have reached most of my goals and that is quite satisfying (I just realized that quite seems to be quite the word for me today) and that should be a reason to think that 2015 has indeed been a good year.

But here is the sad truth: 2015 was quite demanding. Reaching my goals was one thing – I did enjoy that and I did feel like I have actually succeeded at something, but people kept pushing me to go on and do to more and to realize a new goal and that quickly diminished that feeling of success. And the work I did was of a kind that required of me to take a break after fulfilment and I didn´t do that, because I gave in to what the people told me to do: never to be happy with the things you got but always to strive for more. And I did: I got the job, didn´t I? I am doing all the work, am I not?

I´m tired. And I don´t mean this in a “I haven´t slept much last night”-kinda way. It´s not just physical tiredness. Since my birthday, I have slept more than 10 hours every night (last night: 14 hours) and it shows that my body is tired. But the tiredness I´m talking about goes deeper. I´m not saying I´m tired of life, that´s not it, I´m saying that I´m tired of 2015 and all the things it asked of me without actually giving anything back in return. I´m tired of people´s expectations and me actually trying to fulfill them. I´m tired of having to do it the way people do and not being able to do things my way. I´m so tired of actually having done things their way and not my way that I don´t know what my way is anymore. It says people are lost at 25, but I´m 28 and I´m more lost than I ever was.

I´m not saying that my New Year´s resolution is to be more me in 2016, partly because I´m not a fortune teller and partly because I somehow don´t believe in these resolutions anymore. I´m not saying I will change completely. But here is what I will do in the remaining hours of 2015: I will cook dinner for me and my mother (with whom I´ll say goodbye to 2015 and hello to 2016). We will listen to music and talk and we will simply enjoy this day as we would any other day where we come together. And I think that´s a good start. For what, I don´t know. I just know it´s good.

 

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