It’s been a bit of a trying slide into the last days of 2019, and I’m feeling it. Especially this limbo, between the crush of everything needing to be done before Christmas, but before Momo’s back at school and I have some time to myself again. One of the first signs that I’m getting kind of burned out is anhedonia – I stop being able to find joy in things.

In a season where you’re supposed to be thinking about peace and love (and decorating your house with tchotchkes and giving gifts and baking cookies and wrapping presents and doing the thousands of little labours that go into Making Christmas even though you don’t want to because it doesn’t matter), it’s uniquely fun to be doing it while not feeling much about it at all. I didn’t celebrate Christmas this year so much as I grimly observed its passing. To anyone who commented that I looked tired this holiday season: yes.

I try to use the closing days of the year to do some quiet reflection on how lucky we are, as barely-risen apes, to enjoy warm houses and readily available food, and heat, and light, and community, in defiance of the natural order of things that would have us shivering and hungry in the dark months instead. Even feeling a little run-down as I do, that’s what centers me, and I can find a little kernel of gratefulness.

I’m grateful for the continued health of my family – and that when we have not been healthy, physically or mentally, we’ve had access to care. I’m grateful that we have as much as we need to be comfortable. I’m grateful for the gift of life given to Momo’s grandpa in a donor kidney. I’m grateful that when I’ve needed help this year, I was given it readily and joyfully, and I’m looking forward to being able to pay some of that energy forward in 2020.

Goodbye, 2019. See you all in the future. <3