Great Expectations?

(If by chance you’re reading this blog for the first time after following the link in Voice of the River Valley, welcome! This is about all there is to it.)

January 10, 2021

A few days ago, I was trying to describe my thoughts about the first week of 2021.  Without thinking, I said that “it isn’t what I expected” — which, in truth, isn’t true at all.  I didn’t have specific expectations for the new year. I figured it would be as full of surprises (both good and awful) as 2020, 2019, and so forth.  When you study natural resources, you learn that the change in calendar year is irrelevant to every species except ours.

I do have plans for 2021, but I don’t expect them to come to fruition in the exact way I hoped.  We all find some of our plans shifting or being replaced as the year progresses.  This fact doesn’t change when we flip to a new page in the calendar.

I don’t mean that we shouldn’t be bothered when our plans change.  It’s a shame, especially when other humans who should know better are responsible.  In certain cases, we should even be outraged.

Nevertheless, my goal for this new year is to not see it as a year at all.  In the hours, days, and weeks to come, I hope to take things one step at a time.  If I can make myself and others feel better in the moment, it will guard me against the feeling that 2021 has been “all good” or “all bad”. In other words, I won’t try to achieve my goals by following a plan to the letter but by seeing what I can do today to make them happen.

Of course, that could change.

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