Thursday, January 01, 2009

The Bonfire of Regrets

I stood in subarctic temperatures late last night and into this morning as part of a merry group celebrating First Night here in my hometown. What you see here is a cellphone image of the "Bonfire of Regrets," something I've been hearing about for years and yet never participated in personally until New Year's 2009.

I assume the idea is to metaphorically (or perhaps literally, with the help of pen and paper) throw your regrets of the past year on the bonfire as part of your efforts at beginning the new year fresh and unencumbered.

As I stood there, these were the chief regrets that swam into my mind:

* Not wearing warmer gloves.

* Not getting there early enough to stand at the fence, where, Petra tells me, it was tolerably warm.

* Angry words exchanged within the last week with someone who means the world to me.

That was about it. I don't mean to imply I Am Perfect and Perfectly Happy With Everything About Me. (I don't know anyone who lives on that planet; do you?) But... I am more than tolerably happy. I am happy. I feel blessed: in family, in relationships, in work. I feel gratitude, not regret.

As I sit here typing this, 10-plus hours into the New Year, I'm fairly astonished to read my own words. But there they are.

Wishing you love, warmth and meaning in 2009.


cheesehead said...

More than tolerably happy sounds pretty damn good to me.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I love it that you're short on regrets. What a wonderful to be able to say!

I'm glad that the last year brought me the opportunity to get to know you online.

Happy 2009 to you and your lovely family!

- Lisa

Songbird said...

Yes, I would take that!

LittleMary said...


gordbrown said...

Not to psychoanalyse myself, but 2008 really sucked. In January, my father died and in November I had to vacate the marital home and live among piles of my possesions in tight quarters.

Having said that, it was an improvement on 2007, when I got fired twice (which pretty much killed the marriage) and we got the final date on my father's terminal illness. Also, at least in 2008 there was this election in the U.S. that turned out pretty well.

So I guess I have lots of regrets. But I also have found my way to this blog, which has helped with those regrets more than I can say. So a big thank you to you and to your commenters/fellow bloggers and Happy 2009 to us all.

Magdalene6127 said...

Thanks all, for being present here. I am grateful for every one of you.

Gord, thanks for saying this blog has been a positive presence in your life. Praying for you (and for all of us) peace and joy in 2009.

giggles said...

I agree...regrets, not so much.... wasted energy as far as I'm concerned....

Oh wait... I regret W being in office..but I didn't have anything to do with THAT one! Here's to things looking up in '09!