The Comfort of January

It’s been one month since Christmas. I try not to measure time by ‘how much has passed since’ anymore, but sometimes I still catch myself doing it. Like I’ll be walking down the International aisle at Lidl, thinking to myself, ‘wow, it’s been three years since I was in Asia.’ Or sitting at my desk, thinking ‘it’s been six months since my birthday’. Or lying in bed, thinking about the fact that three weeks ago, I was in my own room and now I’m here. 

Time is just a concept, after all. Someone important said that. (Was it Einstein?)

The thing is, the passing of time used to really scare me. I used to think I never had enough of it; that it was always slipping through my fingers. I suppose that’s one of the reasons I tried to do as much as possible, as quickly as possible. 

If I don’t do this now, I’ll never have a chance, I thought. If I don’t get this done, I’ll fall behind. 

Younger me had such silly thoughts. Older me does too, but at least I’m more aware of them.

I think the beauty of January is that it feels long and drawn out. The days pass, and so do the weeks, but when I wake up in the morning, it’s still January. I could stay in bed all day, wrapped in the coziest blanket in the world, and not feel like I was running out of time. 

Has January always been this way or am I just enjoying this slow pace of life for once? Last year at this time, I was trying to figure out how to get from Mexico to Guatemala. Now I’m just living.

I never rush anymore, except in an excited sort of way. The kind of way you might hurry when you see something beautiful on the other side of the street and quicken your pace to get there faster. That’s okay. It’s not frantic, it’s not panicky. (Is that what it means to mature as you age?) 

There’s something very precious about the eternal feeling of January. It’s like winter, but without the cold, the slush, the depressing darkness. Instead, it’s pure untouched snow. Endlessly fresh. And without the fear that it’ll melt away too soon. 

July and August always seem to disappear in the blink of an eye. December flies by in a heartbeat. But January drags on and on and on and on and on….in the most comforting of ways.

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