The Mountain Times

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You say you want a resolution

I swear I have no idea how another year rolls around so quickly. As a kid, a year seemed like an eternity. As an adult, it is more comparable to the blink of an eye. Where are the brakes for this speeding freight train called the golden years?

And so I find myself, once again, ready to say goodbye to one year and welcome in a new one. Seems like yesterday I was saying goodbye, and good riddance, to 2011. Now with the last few days of 2012 dwindling, I have to admit the sentiments are the same.  One only needs to reflect on recent heart-breaking tragedies to agree - it wasn't the best of years.

I gave up on resolutions several years ago. It appeared to take less and less time for them to go by the wayside, so inevitably the "why bother" attitude overcame the hype. Honestly, how many years in a row can you resolve to lose weight, exercise more, go to church faithfully, drink more water, drink less alcohol, stop cursing and give up chocolate (oops, that last one got mixed up with Lent).

But things have a tendency to come full circle. We Boomers have lived long enough to return to a true appreciation of life. As we begin to come to grips with our own mortality, we readjust our priorities and often set a course to make up for our mistakes.
So, once again, resolutions get made - this time with a renewed fervor to stick to them. And I am no exception.

I resolve to be healthy. These old bones have served me well even though I put them through the ringer in my younger, wilder days. Lean protein, dark green leafy veggies and low-fat dairy products. Limited white flour and sugar. Exercise including strength training and cardio. Of course even a healthy body deserves a treat once in a while. Heart healthy red wine and the occasional shot of vodka never hurt anyone. And peanut butter cup frozen yogurt will never be removed from this girl's food chain.

I resolve not to sweat the small stuff. It's ok if the house cleaning and laundry wait another day in exchange for time with my grandchildren. I won't let annoying people get me riled up. It won't be necessary to always strive for perfection. Being stuck in traffic will become a time to meditate. Naturally, we all have to release frustration at times, so there may be an occasional thump on the head or the middle finger salute if absolutely necessary. Heck, we're only human.

I resolve to appreciate the intangibles. Sunrises and sunsets, fresh air, a sense of calm and laughter - lots of laughter. Material things will slide down the priority ladder save the occasional new pair of shoes, and maybe some clothes that are on sale, and perhaps a couple of pair of earrings. But I promise I will appreciate those as well.

I resolve to love with abandon. My girls, my grandchildren, my friends will always know how deeply I care for them.

I resolve to give back. It's true that what you put out comes back to you ten-fold. Paying it forward continues the chain. Of course I may also be giving away some money to truly test the theory. But seriously, volunteerism and community service are good for the soul.

I resolve to laugh. Every day. It simply is the best medicine.

The resolutions of our youth were too easy to break. They were often superficial and flimsy. But at this stage of life, choose resolutions that make you feel good at the end of the year. Then perhaps you won't be saying good riddance when the ball drops on New Year's Eve. Have no regrets.

Happy New Year!