Resolutions, shmesolutions. Yeah, that didn’t really work, did it? Sorry. It’s day 5 of the New Year and I feel like I’ve just been spit out of a tumble dryer. I’m over-socialised, I’m knackered, my house is a mess, I’ve already lost my new diary. I woke up late and feel like I had no chance to get my bearings before I dashed out of the house for weekly mandated blogging time. Inside my head is a rumbling cavern, echoing with phrases as my poor cerebrum tries to process everything that was packed into it over the past ten days, along with whatever was already in there.
That’s what it’s like in there ALL THE FRELLING TIME.
So that’s why I don’t do resolutions. That’s just setting myself up to fail and honey, I do not need any more of that.
I’m also kinda crap at the “Word of the Year” thing I see bandied around the nicer corners of the internet. They’re always so genuinely mindful, and my surly inner 17-year-old cannot resist bait like that. She nominates phrases like “Gin” or “Fuck this shit”, which in some moments, I think, kinda defeats the purpose.
This year is not those moments.
This year, the world is burning. Literally. Here in Australia, 5.8 million hectares are currently alight or have been burnt in the past six months. The fire front is 11,000km long – from here to Pakistan – and it’s burning so fiercely, it is now creating its own weather. Our smoke is polluting New Zealand, 1900kms away across the Tasman Sea; the fires alone have generated half our country’s annual carbon emissions in the past six months. Human lives have been lost; thousands of homes incinerated; tens of thousands have fled; countless millions of animals have died.
It’s still going.
And so are we. Carrying on our daily lives, most of us, as we always have.
In these circumstances, I think, actually, that my inner self has the right idea. Fuck this shit. Appeasing her, I’m wearing a t-shirt that says “Smash the Patriarchy” – because fundamentally, that’s what it’s going to take – and I’m seriously contemplating dying my hair fuschia as a warrior flag. (My eldest says he loathes that idea “with a passion that burns as bright as the colour [I’m] considering”. Heh.) My inner self has huge kicking boots on and she’s ready to charge the barricades.
But, that raging heart is fortunately trapped inside the body of a 50yo. A widely-read 50yo who loves people. I mean, really loves people, in all their wonky, confused, faltering glory. A 50yo who has incredible, beautiful young children to protect and who loves their incredible, beautiful friends. A 50yo who feels like she’s maybe just starting to grow into her strengths, and those strengths are empathy, respect, and compassion. Kindness. And words. Always, the words.
So I participate in the #iamhere movement; I engage in public online battles I could never previously bring myself to fight, because I have the skills and now there is so much at stake, I find I finally have the courage. This year, if anything, I plan to step that up: I want to see proper campaigning, I want to see big changes – huge fucking changes – I want to see us building lives that can withstand the fire. I am full of rage and love.
It’s going to be hard. It’s going to be terrifying. It’s going to be exhausting.
And right now, at least, I am so there for it.
2020: bring on the revolution.