Tonight I was watching the Sex and the City movie, because hey, it’s Saturday night and nothing’s on tv, and nothing is a touchstone for girls everywhere like SATC. One of my favorite scenes in the movie is the New Year’s Eve one, where Carrie races downtown to be with Miranda so that neither has to be alone on New Year’s. Having spent a lonely New Year’s or two in my life and knowing it’s pretty much the most depressing thing on the planet, this scene always makes me tear up.
I think New Year’s is definitely the worst time to be alone. I don’t mean single–I’ve had some great single New Years. I mean actually alone, solitary, with no one around. If you haven’t done it, I don’t advise it. The rest of the world is partying as hard as it can–to paraphrase the New Year’s Eve trailer (my apologies), “People who don’t go out all year suddenly become Kanye.” On top of that, New Year’s is a pretty narcissistic holiday. There’s no present swapping or time with family. The tradition is to list resolutions, think about the self, reflect inward. Which is all well and good, but it also means that if you’re alone, you’re really stuck with yourself. Maybe I’m talking big here, because I’ve never had cause to be alone on other holidays. But that one year I spent by myself sticks out as terminally depressing. Oddly I can’t remember if it was 2007-08 or 2008-09. Since then, though, I’ve made it a point to go out somewhere, usually with my old hs friend. Last year I got sick from alcohol for the first time ever (a deadly combination of lots of champagne and cheese).
This year, things will be very different. This year I’m with the bf. He’s here for visit number two. Of course, living in New Year’s Central, when we thought about spending New Year’s together, his first idea was Times Square. I told him that he could not drag my dead body to Times Square because I had no desire to stand in a giant crowd, freeze my butt off, and not be able to pee for something like seven hours. After some debate (he doesn’t give in easy that one), he finally conceded under the condition that one year we would rent a hotel room overlooking Times Square to watch the ball drop, which I am all for.
That still left us at a bit of a loss for this year, though. Which you may say is ridiculous, given that we’re in New York City which never goes to sleep anyway and gets super hyper on New Year’s Eve, like when they give those tiny pageant freaks 10,000 pixie stix on Toddlers and Tiaras. The problem with NY for me, though, is that I’m spoiled for choice, and I’m never v. good at making my mind up or finding things. So we were discussing it today, and as he’s not much of a New Year’s person (see reasons above, from the boy side), we’re probably going to end up staying in. For a bit we were going to visit friends in Westchester, but they got a scary sickness from their child, which is the worst kind of cold virus known to man. So it’s 11:07, the house is quiet, and it’s just the two of us and a bottle of champagne and the cats.
There is a big difference though, between staying in alone and staying in with the person you love. What was lonely becomes cozy. I’m actually getting excited about the idea, because I’ve never had an intimate New Year. And being a ceremonial kind of gal, I love the symbolism of it. It will be the two of us closing off the old year and starting the new one together. And we are starting off 2012 in a big way. I’m typing this with a ring on my finger. Apparently my last post did not scare him off. We’re really Harry and Charlotte!
I love the song “Auld Lang Syne.” Ok, it’s a bit cliche, but it’s honestly pretty, and I love the nostalgia that it carries. I’ve always been a big one for celebrating my past and commemorating everything, so you could even say it’s my theme song. Now single me is in the past, and I think she’s gone for good, but I’m not sure I want to celebrate her, or commemorate her. She was lonely in a very powerful way, and that loneliness took her over. She couldn’t find joy for people who were getting married or thought about babies because she was so afraid that was something she’d never get to see. But she’s becoming a ghost now, someone I barely remember who feels far removed from me. And in other ways, she was pretty brave, and although she hid sometimes, she did some cool stuff, and she found out a lot about who she was and what she wanted. She taught me to recognize the love of my life when he came across my path, and she never let me get afraid enough to shy away.
So this New Year’s I’m not going to raise a glass to days gone by. I’m going to toast the future. 2012 is a bright star on the horizon. The Mayan calendar signals a great world shift in 2012, and they were certainly right for me. Get me into the New Year so we can celebrate together and start heading towards the rest of our lives.