Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Clean Slate

My friend Emily from back in the day, used to have a very peculiar habit with a new book. She would write on the first page until there was no space left. She never wanted to turn the page. She just loved having a new book, and to her, squeezing all her notes on that page gave her the feeling of everything being new and staying that way, as she described.  I remember in class 3, when our teacher was absent and the 3b teacher had to substitute... This meant we moving our desks to squeeze into his class. Our class teacher knew Emily's habit, and of course she would patiently wait until she was ready to turn the page. Now, Mr Mwangi was not aware and so when Emily took her class work to be marked, she had to explain to him that he needed to do some sort of treasure hunt. She had written all over the place wherever she could find space. To me, that was hilarious. She had some ease about her, that made her almost unaware of her surroundings, that when Mr Mwangi was shouting, she just looked at me and smiled.

As for me, a new book meant changing my handwriting and promising myself that this time, i'll be neat and organized. With a new year, was a new class, and therefore everything else was new. It was a time to start over. An opportunity to do it better. I had a specific handwriting for the first few pages, and then as time went by, the neatness would start to wear off. I wouldn't care about how neat the book looked anymore, and soon all the promises I had made to myself didn't matter. A long the way,  I would loose a pen and had to borrow one that probably didn't have enough ink, and that of course put a dent in my promise. Or my pen would dry up or I would find a brand of pen with a different kind of blue that wasn't Bic. Sometimes I would be doing my homework just before the teacher came to class... and of course that was my in a hurry handwriting. There would be all sorts of challenges along the way and they were all told in the style of writing.

This story reminded me of the new year. We have made so many promises to ourselves by now. I started three days before the end of the year. I'm determined to keep this promises, and just like my school work, there will be challenges. The pen, the ink, the winter,  rain, there is no telling what will come. But I will do it anyway. Even last minute before the teacher appears will do, just as long as we do what we have to do. Like my friend Emily, don't be afraid to turn the page. The key is to keep the enthusiasm. The second page doesn't mean the book is old, it's also a clean slate, and an opportunity to start all over again. Everyday is a gift unique in its own way. As for the 2nd,3rd, 4th and the rest of Jan remember you still have a chance. If you find yourself giving up along the way, try the next day. 

"For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: 'If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?' And whenever the answer has been 'No' for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something." 
Steve Jobs 

"I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I'm going to be happy in it. "
Groucho Marx  

Psalm 118:24

This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

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