The thought of another year coming to pass has always been uncomfortable for me. The simple thought of the new year is sufficient to send me stumbling through the first few days.
I spend the first day of the new year breathing life into my imagination and my future, hoping that this year will be better than the last. I’m convinced my life is on an upward trend, and I‘m already on my way to achieving my goals.
The second day, I deflate. Inevitably, the newness wears off, like the tide returning to shore after a night in the deep end, and I slowly gather my ambition and paddle to safer harbors. The workout leggings I found online yesterday still sit pending in my shopping cart. The journal I bought last year and never touched is a reminder of lost ambitions from the year before.
This year feels uncharted, even amorphous, like we’ve ventured into the deepest of waters. Do I actually know where I stand in my “5-year plan,” or is revisiting it every year my small way to assert my self-efficacy? My ability to be a change-maker in my own life is something that was important to me in 5780, but this global pandemic takes all the control out of my hands. This moment in time gives me pause to reconsider what is really important in my life (beyond my carefully crafted 5-year plan).
What I do know is this: quarantine has given me what Rosh Hashanah normally brings only once a year –the feelings of anxiety – but also the perpetual hope for change, opportunity and a better year to come.
It feels like this change of pace is a necessary obstacle for each and every one of us. I urge you to consider this in your second-day ambition hangover. While it might feel like we drown in the deep end of the unknowns of our lives, remember: these are our swimming lessons.
Casey Rosner is one of five residents at Moishe House Atlanta – Buckhead.