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2011-01-05 / Loose Ends

What a difference a little cream cheese makes!

Susan Nienow

Here it is again – New Year’s. It’s a strange holiday. It can make me feel guilty, apprehensive, sad, awestruck and panicky. The guilt is easy to understand. It comes with all of the things I didn’t do that I meant to do this past year including my resolutions from last year. I didn’t call Sandy back when she called me last spring. I forgot to ask Lynn out to lunch with us when the gang went last time. I missed Ann’s birthday, and Fran’s and Dave’s. I am not very good with birthdays, but I pick out great belated birthday cards.

I overdosed on chip dip at a Christmas party on the 17th. I also ate my way through four chocolate cookies and a mini cheesecake that same night. I won’t detail my other culinary transgressions during 2010, but each came with a hefty dose of guilt. Why can’t I remember how good I felt every time I ate broccoli? Or Brussels sprouts? Aren’t they nutritious?

Apprehensive? That comes with being on the roads or knowing my kids or others I love are out that evening. So we do the early thing and leave before midnight or even before 11 p.m. And it has nothing to do with being tired by 10 p.m. I remember napping after work and getting up to go to parties at 10 p.m. That was a long time ago. Now I am happy to make it through the evening without falling asleep on someone else’s sofa.

I am sad that time is flying by. I miss the days my daughter spent playing house and the afternoons my son spent climbing trees. I miss the days I wore a size __ and could touch my toes without breaking something. (You didn’t really think I would fill in the blank, did you?) There is a fleeting moment every day when I am reminded of a perfect moment at another time.

Awestruck? That I am still here, loving my family and friends, eating chips and dip, digging up my asters again and driving a car with a dent I put in the fender that my other half has never mentioned. That my almost 3-year-old granddaughter can say, “No, Daddy. You can’t have that.” I told him it would come home to roost. I am awed by the number of times each day that I can drop beads on my office floor and have to get down on my hands and knees to find them. The next carpet I buy will not be flowered.

Why panicky? This is my “get fit” year. There is nothing like a public declaration to cause panic. I also need a plan to get rid of all the beads I have bought. I am much better at buying them than using them. I have given them to friends, sold some and supplied my daughter and daughter-in-law with my latest creations. Maybe I need more friends. I do refuse, however, to keep my desk clean.

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