Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The not so new year

It is no longer a time to write about welcoming the 'new year'. Neither it is the time to fondly remember the year that went by. But when all the new year wishes, celebrations and even the different 'New Year Sales' and 'New Year Offers' have settled down, when most of us have almost forgotten about the resolutions that we might have made on the New Year's eve, I thought it might be a good idea to look back and reflect!

There has always been a lot of hoopla around the time when a new leaf in the calender is turned. A brand new year. But apart from the obvious change in the date, does anything ever change? The same routine, the same challenges, the same insecurities and the same sources of happiness and unhappiness. What changes then? Why do we make new year resolutions? Why do we party? Well...I think we all know the answer. We need a reason to celebrate, we need a reason to feel that change will come..change for the better..the ever elusive better tomorrow!
Getting a bit personal, my New Year celebrations have gone through different phases (like many of you I guess!). As a kid I remember, the main excitement was that we were granted permission to watch TV till late night on New Year's Eve and that in itself was quite a feat! Then when I was growing up it became a day when you wish people, buy greeting cards and send to all of whom you perceive to be of some importance in your life. Buying cards for friends, for favourite teachers in school used to be a big event in my life during my school days. I still fondly remember those times, when I used to first make a list of people who will get a card from me, then coax my mom or my brother to take me to the shop, rummage  through the cards there, read every sentence that was written on the pages, select them carefully and then when back at home write the names and addresses carefully, post them and await their reply! Oh it was so much fun!

During my teenage years, the cards were still there, but now the list was smaller and the corner book shop was replaced by the Archies Gallery! But still there was a lot of excitement in that ritual. Once in Medical college, the ritual of cards almost vanished, perhaps to be replaced by a skepticism towards all the fuss and feathers associated with anything perceived as superficial and perfunctory. Very typical of Medical students overloaded with studies and anxiety, I suppose! Funnily the New-year fever was back with the bang during post grad days in Manipal..mostly I think due to the infectious "Manipal Culture"(no offence meant!), where students actually save money to buy that special outfit to wear in the 'New Year Disco'! ;-)

Well things have changed now. I no longer go to a stationary shop to buy cards, online wishes now suffice to wish anyone. Gone is the time of waiting for the special new year's TV show also (there is anyways too much of TV in my life), gone is the need to show off in a jazzy outfit on new year's eve and also gone is the skepticism towards those who celebrate! Well to be absolutely frank, now it is a mix of eager wait for the holiday on 1st Jan and a little bit reconnecting with people who matter in the guise of a sms or a email or may be a phone call (till the networks get jammed!).

Today I firmly believe that Life itself is a celebration! With all the challenges it offers on its way, all the tears that are shed, all the abundant confusion and the fleeting moments of happiness, Life indeed is the biggest party! And life does need to be celebrated, in whatever form and on whatever days that suit you! I don't need a 'New Year' anymore, I am willing to celebrate the not so new year and old year also. I have started feeling that instead of making resolutions on one evening and spending the entire year breaking them, why not make small resolutions anytime I feel like and celebrate a new day, a new week or may be even a new blog ;-). Well, that is what I just did!


  1. Hi arunima, I can see your rambling mind getting anchored to the dynamism of Life. Beautiful thoughts and your rich experience has been elaborated with wonderful diction.It was a treat to read it. I could almost hear your melodious voice doing the talking. The more we see, the more dimensions emerge too, doesn't it seem that they are in direct proportion!

    Very well said, 'every day a new day', I also feel that every hour is a new hour, every minute a new minute, and every moment a new moment, when we are able to give ourselves fully, to every moment we live and every breath we take, it becomes the supreme form of meditation/celebration..living moment by moment..

    Thank You.

  2. C'est la vie! That's life!
    Celebrate life, live life to the fullest.
    A lovely reflective post from you, though after a long gap. Quite rewarding indeed.