There is something so splendid about the beginning of a new year. Bookstores display gorgeous 2012 diaries, cafés and restaurants delight gourmands with their festive menus, and the skies are illuminated with fluttering fireworks. It also gives us time to reflect and celebrate moments that were etched in our hearts from the previous year. The author Phyllis Nicholson says, “And what does January hold? Clean account books. Bare diaries. Three hundred and sixty-five new days, neatly parceled into weeks, months, seasons. A chunk of time, of life… those few first notes like an orchestra tuning up before the play begins“.
Think back to your childhood when you still had a sense of wonder and envisaged how your life would play out before the naysayers popped those dreams like arrows piercing multicolored balloons. Is there something on your wish list that you always wanted to do but never got a chance to? Many people go through life mistakenly thinking that to live spiritually means that they cannot revel in life’s abundance. If these thoughts ever crossed your mind, it is reassuring to read the Quran and ponder on the many verses where God encourages us to be happy.
“He it is Who created for you all that is on the earth.” (Quran 2:29)
This morning, spend a glorious hour putting a vision for the upcoming year. Curl up in your sunken sofa, sip a luscious cup of banoffee hot chocolate, and paint a vision of your wishes in your notebook. Go wild. After you finish, take little steps to ensure you do your part in the plan and luxuriate in waiting for God to do the rest, trusting that He is All-Loving and All-Merciful.
My list for the upcoming year is to:
- Love God more and get closer to Him by enlightening myself and always trusting that He equally loves me.
- Shower my family with unconditional love and blissful times.
- Bless the hopeful and cheerful children who are waiting for glimmers of hope, be it through a scholarship, nourishing meals, a library of books, or kind and uplifting words.
- Devour books on children’s literature, contemporary women’s novels, travelogues, gourmand cooking, self-help and parenting guidebooks, and historical fiction set in the Andalusian and Ottoman eras.
- Handwrite my epiphanies and reflections. Mythologist Joseph Campbell (author of The Hero with a Thousand Faces) says that wonders are revealed in sacred spaces, be they in the form of a garden, a poem, a painting, or a book. My library is my sanctuary.
- Set my wanderlust free and travel. Every night, I will cruise in my land of dreams to artsy Barcelona, splendorous Seville, chic Paris, the fairy tale Romantic Road in Germany, and the azure oceans that surround the Mauritius.