I decided to start my 2016 on the right foot, right after I checked up on my friends on Facebook this morning. I expected silly party pics from the bar, Tropical pics from those celebrating on beach resorts, and of course midnight kiss pics with those they love or have just met. But so many of my friends stayed in with their kids this year. They marked the occasion with old people memes and announcements.
“I’m in my PJ’s by 8pm. I love being old!”
And then they created photo albums to show off the kid-party they threw instead of the drunken rager they’re so famous for. Pictures of silly games and dances and smorgasbord of tiny party food. And they all ended with a photo of the little one who almost made it to midnight. They were fun to look at. Fun to share in those experiences. And I wished I could have posted some pictures of my own. But my kids were in bed by 8:30. I didn’t even tell them it was New Years Eve.
Oh I know. Shame on me. I blew the chance to bond with my babies, to party with the kiddies. But you know what? I was exhausted. The two oldest have been fighting non-stop for two weeks, we all have colds and terrible coughs, and we’re still cleaning up from Christmas, physically and emotionally. I just wanted to order pizza and send the kids to bed and end the year watching a rated R movie (The Departed) and smooching on my husband in between hacking up a lung. I didn’t want to spend the evening screaming at kids to stop fighting, to pick up all the toys they so carelessly threw around the room, to be quiet so we could all hear the movie (which would not have been The Departed!). And I sure as hell didn’t want to do all that til midnight. So we did nothing. And I have no regrets.
Or had no regrets.
After my little cruise around Facebook Island, I screwed up when I said to the kids, “Happy New Year, guys!” Laurie’s eyes lit up, “Are we going to watch the ball drop tonight?!?!” I tried to sound all nonchalant, “No. That was last night.”
Que the first melt-down of the year. It was a doozy.
Luckily, I had an announcement that would turn everything around. “Don’t cry! We’re gonna go see Grandpa for Last Christmas today!” So guilt trip squashed, bring on the presents!
That’s right, we still had ONE MORE Christmas. Being a product of divorces, and then getting married myself, has meant Christmas lasts weeks and is bittersweet. Love seeing everyone. Hate going to see everyone. But, it is what it is. And this year they were all spread-out pretty well so it wasn’t too horribly stressful.
So, we began our year with Christmas presents and New Years sauerkraut. It was a nice combo. Minus the part where we brought home a kid with a fever, but that probably would’ve happened any way we celebrated…or not celebrated.
The kids are now in bed. Christmas is still a mess all over the place, but at least we got the tree put away til next year. My belly is full, my husband is almost asleep on the couch, and things are pretty good. And as I crack open up my new calendar, I think to myself, “Alright…here we go again!”
Happy New Year to all of you out there, my friends and family. I hope you have a good one.