My New Year's Resolutions!

By Anjali Mohapatra • January 5, 2024

31st December, 2023! Night time…

My brisk walking around the room was a clear reflection of my anxiety! But the minute and second hands in the wall clock were even faster than me. I looked at the wall clock. It was 10:42 pm. I grumbled to myself, ‘Oops! No, no, no - Only one hour and eighteen minutes left. No way! This time I’ll make it!’ I rushed to the table and grabbed a paper and pen to note down something as if that would be an eyewitness of my resolutions. Yes, I’ll do that so that no more mistakes by me.

The loud music coming from the living room had deafened my ear! I shouted, ‘Hey, you all! Reduce the volume. You know that I am going to pray exactly five minutes from 12 till 12:10 a.m. Now be quiet and enjoy your New Year's Eve, ok?’ As my words splattered, the youngest one screamed, ‘Mama, the farewell party of this year is going on Mama, why don't you understand! Let us enjoy, mama! Let us say goodbye to 2023 in a decent manner, ok?’

I heard him clearly and kept quiet. Time was running out for me. Once again I looked at the clock. ‘O my God! Only forty-five minutes left! I was so excited that I couldn't think what I had decided to accept as my New Year's resolutions. Hurriedly, I entered the puja room to check the Diya that was offered to our deities. It was burning brightly. Sitting on the floor, I started writing a few points on the paper. I had promised myself strictly to follow my resolutions for the coming new year. (The funny part is: that I had been doing the same resolutions for the last three years but I have completely forgotten what I did)! Suddenly, I noticed the outside noise doubled abruptly. I was shocked thinking the due time of 12! Again I rushed to confirm the time. ‘O Lord! I am saved,’ I took a deep breath and consoled myself yes five minutes left to my target.

Without diverting my mind anywhere, I sat in the puja room before the deities. I kept the paper on my lap and started my meditation. Mind is uncontrollable! It is so notorious that I pulled it from poking into other thoughts, yet it disregarded my order. Somehow, I focused on my Lord's feet! Hardly, a few minutes later, fireworks echoed from all directions! And my children screamed ‘Happy New Year!’ I was meditating then!

Early morning, first day of 2024—-

First day of the new year! I was rehearsing the resolutions that I have made and have to follow! I became super fast! Having finished my daily routine, I was ready to prepare some breakfast for the children. I was repeating the points in my mind not to forget! The maid’s time had already exceeded! Very frequently, I was watching the time and grunting in a low voice! The calling bell buzzed loudly. When the maid entered into the room, I lost my temper. I just burst upon her and yelled, ‘Why are you so late today, hun? Are you insane? Today- the first day of a new year? How can you think to be late?’

The maid cast her eyes down and said nothing! I screamed at her again but suddenly realized- ‘Oh my God! What have I done? I got angry! This was my first resolution!’ I felt guilty and went to her to console her with soft words! After a little while I kept busy with my other work.

Time passed so quickly just like bubbles in the air! My youngest son bashfully brought his ninth-grade first-semester result and showed me. Instead of motivating him in a better way, I said- ‘Not impressive,’ and immediately his expression changed. He snatched the paper from my hand and ran away to his room. ‘Oh my God! I break my second resolution- Never use the negative word. No.. I could have told in a different way not to offend him.'

But there was no end to my mistakes. A few days ago when one of the friends of my son asked me to hand over the phone to him, I simply lied to him- he was not at home. It was almost the end of January, I felt as if I was compressed between something! Maybe I was unable to follow a rule I promised as a New Year’s resolution and I became a victim of the same flow of natural habits!

On 31st January, I took that paper and threw it in the drawer where the previous resolutions paper was rolling down! Before I threw it, I glanced at the other papers for one time. Nothing new was written. This year's paper was just the mirror reflection of others! I pulled the study chair, sat there, and closing my eyes thought, ‘For the last three years, I have been making and breaking these resolutions! What's the point of making only, if I can't keep it? Then I concluded without control over the sense organs, no resolution can be kept! If I can do that then nothing is impossible! Let me control ’

Thus, my New Year resolutions failed miserably in the first month of 2024! But I didn't give up! Then I said- Let me think positively- I will do it!

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