Full Face into the New Year

Like just about everyone else, at the end of each old year I make resolutions that, of course, I don’t keep. This year I ended the old year a step ahead of the game and began keeping my most important resolution: to go out and get a life. (Note, for those who don’t know: being responsible for the health and well-being of my 87-year old mother and living across the hall from her has been more of a drain on my energies than I expected.)
So, on the afternoon of the last day of the old year I accepted an invitation from the publisher to gather with his staff of the NY Dance Scene magazine, for which I was the editor and primary feature writer when I was still ballroom dancing. The magazine is almost finished moving from print to web format, and I think it looks great online. My name is still listed in the “About Us” section (although misspelled; I’ve got to remind them to correct that) because I condense and provide the condensed chapters of a mystery novel set at a ballroom dance weekend in the Catskills that a former SO of mine wrote (and I edited — and inspired, btw!) It’s a good story, I think, and the magazine intends to eventually get the entire (condensed version) novel online.
The point is that I got my sorry self dressed and coiffed and out of the house and thoroughly enjoyed the company of these interesting people. (I even got to explain to them about weblogging, since, although net-literate, most are not blog-literate.) I might even join some of them in a Quick Step dance class that recently started. I’m not bad at basic Quick Step, and maybe I’ll give it a shot and see how my herniated disc problem (much relieved because of Core Physical Therapy) stands up to the challenge.
After that, I made dinner for my mom and two long-time (also divorced) women friends and the three of us set out to see a movie. I should have remembered how packed the movie theaters are on New Year’s Eve. The only movie we wanted to see that wasn’t sold out was Cold Mountain, and I’m glad we were forced into that option. While I wanted to see a comedy so that I could laugh through the end of the old, battered year, instead I found myself wrapped in a stunning reminder that human life, indeed, is often more tragedy than comedy BUT — and that’s a very big BUT — it’s also what we make of it despite the pain and longing and frequent unfairness of it all. A reminder that families are both blood and brotherhood (and sisterhood, of course, but that didn’t alliterate or assonate).
Nicole Kidman’s character makes a statement that I wished I had thought to write down (one of my friends has the book and is going to try to find it for me). It has something to do with weather and rain and men making it and then complaining about it.
When I got back from the movies, I got online and discovered that The Happy Tutor had gone and really ended my year on the best note I could have hoped for. Please do go read the really neat stuff he said about me. When the great glittering Times Square ball slid down into a new year, I felt on top of the world.
Feeling a little bad about the trouncing I gave Rage Boy, I emailed him a carefully composed collage/image wishing him a Happy New Year to “the revered resident dickhead of Blogdom.”
Despite the fact that much of what Chris Locke posts leaves me completely disinterested, the fact also is that usually, somewhere in all the crap, are ideas that get me thinking. As he continues to weave himself (and his readers) into the Gordian knot of psychobabble R&D, he currently is attaching himself to some theories of “Attachment” — something I’m interested in because my daughter has read all the stuff on Attachment Parenting and is following that child-rearing approach. I wish I could make some sense of Locke’s post on the Attachment theory because I’m not sure I understand if the research shows that it’s good or bad in the long run. I suppose I could track down and read a copy of the book he recommends, The Handbook of Attachment, but I’m really not in the mood to wade through that kind of academic tome. I wish that Chris’ efforts to make sense of it all were written in a way that makes sense to less brilliant (but equally eager) minds like mine.
It’s the first day of the New Year, and I’m following through on my second resolution: to write. (Remember, the first was to go out and get a life; I suppose they’re related.) My third is not to spend any money on new clothes but to re-make the ones I have to better suit my mood and lifestyle. (I LOVE clothes — colors, textures, lines; to me they’re wearable art.)
That’s what I’m off to start doing now, after I remove all the odds and ends of clothes that are piled on top of my dusty sewing machine.
Happy New Year, everyone of my blood and brotherhood (and sisterhood, but that doesn’t alliterate or assonate. Heh.)

5 thoughts on “Full Face into the New Year

  1. Everything I have read on attachment parenting (that’s me, the daughter who is so far taking that approach with my son) has suggested that it creates very healthy, secure, confident children (NOT clingy, as many people believe). The theory is (in a nutshell) that by responding to your baby’s needs, not letting them cry it out, by “babywearing” — using a sling — if your baby prefers being held or intensely curious (as mine was from day one. Would not sit in a bouncy seat and just watch the world go by) you send your baby a signal that says they are loved, listened to, protected, safe and they have a secure home base from which to venture out into the world. It says to them that their feelings and needs and desires matter. They learn that no matter what happens, not matter what they do, where they go, their parents and their home are a safe haven for them. It’s a signal sent right from the beginning of their lives. Is it more challenging than traditional parenting? Sure, because it’s more demanding. But the bond it has already created between my son and his father and myself has made for some of the sweetest moments I think I will ever know. And he is curious, very bright, and expressive.
    The western culture is one of the few (if not only) where we toss our kids (as infants) so quickly into their own, solitary world — their own bed, their own space, left to their own devices. Even a pediatrician said recently that humans are born not ready to be born. During their first few months in the world we are their walking uterus, and must behave with them in that way.
    Does it mean those that don’t choose this type of parenting have kids that aren’t as independent, self confident, etc? No. Does it mean they don’t care as much? Of course not. Is one style better than the other. Probably not.
    It’s just a choice.
    But what’s important to note is that the fears of what kind of child attachment parenting creates have so far been proven unfounded, and in fact have shown, as I said before, to create wonderfully healthy, independent, confident children.
    So, that’s basically attachment parenting. The cliff notes version 🙂

  2. Wow. I did not know that. Makes sense, though. Up here, the baby’s feet of the Native tribes often do not even touch the ground for the first nine months to a year after they are born. Passed from Mother’s arms to the outstretched hands of the next family member playing “receiver,” the infant only ever knows the warm, nurturing “space” of a loved one, till they are ready to run, then, well, that’s what the dogs are for, to chase after them, round ’em up, herd ’em back to the circle, all the while, the li’l midgets are giggling evilly at their “great escape.”
    Even in the white culture, there is a closeness up here between all ages, all family members that I have never seen anywhere else. I just chalked it up to the cold weather, keeping everybody prisoner indoors. I mean, what are you going to do, but learn how to get along? What’s the alternative? Frost bite?
    “Happy New Year, everyone of my blood and brotherhood (and sisterhood, but that doesn’t alliterate or assonate. Heh.)”
    Lol. You still got it, Babe.

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