Nobody likes January. It’s cold, you have to face the financial aftermath of Christmas and you’re probably dealing with unpredictable bowel movements as a result of your raw, protein enhanced, processed kale, super-green-goddess diet. All this, combined with a new obligatory exercise routine and the deep, aching sensation in your thighs from the burn of 500 weekly squats makes for a pretty shitty 31 days.
My determined refusal to partake in any standard January weight loss activities has left me at somewhat of a loose end, and with all this free time I have not dieting I’ve found myself at the mercy of the self-improvement regimes of other people. The majority of my friends are starving, tee-total and spouting phrases like ‘2013 is going to be MY year!’ at every feasible opportunity they come across; thus turning into the most boring people imaginable and making me feel like an inferior, Nandos eating, wine swilling couch potato in the process.
If like me you spend the majority of your waking hours in close proximity to a computer, you may have found yourself incorrectly deciding to seek solace in Google Reader and your internet friends, after your own ‘real-life’ friends became too preoccupied with spin class, spiritual cleansing and generally making you feel inferior. I unashamedly love to read about the lives of other people – providing they don’t make me feel shit about my own and as far as January is concerned, I may as well have spent the entire of 2012 eating Pringles and woken up at midnight on December the 31st to cheer and peel the Quality Street wrappers off my face.
I’ve always found that January, over all other months is one of insanity inducing insecurity as I’m forced to reflect upon the last 12 months and the questionable way in which I chose to live them. My 2012 was hardly one of milestones. I didn’t make much money or have children. I didn’t travel or get to wear graduation robes again. I did almost exactly the same thing every day; a repetitive grind of eat-work-sleep with the occasional long-weekend at my parents thrown in for good measure. It was unremarkable in every way, but perspective, in a self-indulgent nostalgic kind of way tells me otherwise.
Sometimes, I don’t fully understand the person I am today. I am the kind of person who carries around a Moleskine diary and meets with a financial advisor to discuss pension options. I have a physiotherapist, an orthodontist, a dermatologist and a training schedule. Occasionally I catch myself saying vacuous, dull things like “I need to pick up my dry-cleaning,” “Can you make sure it’s slim-line?” and “Salted caramel is such a ‘done’ flavour.” and all these things are so normal. They’re just things said and done by people who have normal lives, routines and some kind of purpose that makes them get out of bed day after day.
Maybe it’s because I want to feel like I did something constructive with my year, or perhaps 365 days of a desk job has rendered me cheerfully delusional. Regardless, 2012 was the year that things ‘worked out’ for me, and that from homelessness and a close shave with unemployment I settled into a routine vaguely resembling something of a normal, post-education adult life, and that is it. That is the thing that we’re all so desperately scrabbling for when we’re unleashed into the world, degree certificate in hand and still hungover from the ceremony after-party. A job, a house, success, and the feeling that it was all worth it. A real, adult, legitimate existence. My year was profound in the most average way imaginable and it makes for shit blogging material, but it’s enough for me.Read More