September Is My Favorite
When I sat down to write this post, I envisioned goals and how September is my favorite month. As I wrote, it turned into something different. The words started flowing and that hasn’t happened in a really long time. So often in the last few years, I sat down to write and watched the cursor taunt me as the words simply weren’t there. I lost track of how many times I clicked on “new post” only to eventually shut my laptop in defeat. Tonight, when the words came, I let them. Even if that meant writing something that I didn’t plan.
Like I said, September is my favorite month. There’s the obvious factor that it’s my birthday month! I’m turning 36 this year – on the 6th, to be exact. I get overly excited about my birthday these days. For a long time, I dreaded it because these first days of the month brought up hard memories. During my sophomore year of college, a friend drowned in Lake Michigan just a few days before my birthday.
The whole series of events surrounding his death fell in the days leading up to and after my birthday. His drowning before, the funeral after. In the years that followed, I felt guilty celebrating another year in my life when my friend would never get that chance. I couldn’t get through the days without thinking of him. The latter is still true, but time helped. Now, I celebrate with joy. I know he would want me to make the most of the days I still get. I want to live a big life, full of memories and love and joy. That’s how he lived. It inspired me then and still today.
September, for me, represents more of a new beginning than January 1 ever will. Sure, I love the new year and the symbolism of turning the page to a new calendar year. But, it’s not as special to me as this time of year. Perhaps I get jaded by the “new year, new you” hype, even as I get caught up in it. September is different. Growing up, I was always the nerdy kid that looked forward to the start of the school year. Everything felt fresh and new. Even as a grown adult, opening a brand new notebook with all its clean pages still makes me feel some kind of way.
So, here we are. It’s a new month and my favorite chance to wipe the slate clean. I have not done well with goal setting for a long time. More accurately, it’s goal achievement where I struggle. Yet, I finally find myself settling back into a reality where I feel more like “me” than I have in years. With that, I’m anxious to truly put in the effort in my life. I spent a lot of time simply coasting and existing, just trying to get through a day. I’m done. I don’t want to live like that any longer.
There’s a part of me that wants to jump right into a huge list of goals. That’s where this post started, with lots of things to cross off a list and checkboxes to mark. I want to jump in with both feet. Yet, as I write I realize that what I don’t want is to set myself up for failure with big, audacious goals like running a hundred miles. That’s an awesome goal, one that I hope to want to achieve again in the future. But, for me, not today.
With this new month, this new beginning, I want to set myself up for success. So, I’m choosing only one thing to focus on: practicing yoga every day. I started to write out my usual big list: floss every day, read ten books, and the usual culprits. For so long, those long task lists set me up for failure. I bit off more than I can chew, time and time again. This month, I want to tell myself a better story.
September is my favorite month. It represents a lot for me. This year, I think it just might represent a clean page in my story. And, I am beyond excited to start writing this next chapter.
Photo credit(s): Valeriia Miller.