My January desk is gradually clearing. At the beginning of the month, it’s always the same: strewn with unused holiday stamps, thank-yous to write, December’s to-do lists (half-finished), receipts from the holiday spending spree. There’s a file of gift ideas for next year to be put away.
Eventually I tie up the loose ends, at least the ones that bug me, because by temperament I am a gradualist, and orderly. Organization doesn’t come naturally to me, but I do love order once it’s achieved. Besides, I’m too retrospective to shrug off all the unfulfilled possibility of the holidays just because some calendar tells me I should.
Instead, I carry a holiday hope forward with me: the hope of connecting, of building up my circle into one that’s warmer and more rewarding, that buzzes with shared secrets and sincerity. It’s said that “kinwork” falls to women traditionally: that we make the mesh of society, by remembering the birthdays, calling the hibernating friend, lunching excessively, that sort of thing. Maybe that’s why the holidays ultimately do invigorate me.
So, in January, the work of connecting is continuing. In fact, the longer it bleeds over, the better it bodes for 2014.