clouds at icy altitudes

December 13. 1999

I'm so very cold as I write this. So I thought this picture, and the title, would be appropriate.

I did accomplish some things today. I am so ready for my Art History final, but am still worried about Intellectual Heritage. Tomorrow will not be a happy day for me. I'm still wondering just exactly went wrong with me and that class. I can't believe I might fail it, yet here I am. I knew I'd get burned with procrastination eventually, and it's finally happened. I don't intend on it happening again.

I'm watching "The Stand" as I write this. It was the one Stephen King novel I could actually tolerate, although it was too long, like all his books. I think  the reason I liked it was because I have always been intrigued by the idea of the apocalypse. I never actually got to see the whole miniseries. When it was on TV, I never got to see the end, and when I rented it once a couple years ago I ran out of time and never got to see the end either.

This seems to dovetail perfectly into the subject I had been thinking about. The impending millennium. For most the year I had been in a quandary, trying to figure out just exactly what the end of the millennium meant for me. I was determined for it to have some deep and profound effect on me. But as the time draws nearer, it's starting to mean less and less to me as an event. The end of every year gets the same reaction from me: thinking about what I've done this year, what I haven't done, how I'm screwed up, and how I need to improve in the coming year.

But I was thinking about it earlier. 1999 has been a banner year for me. Despite all my ups and downs, looking back, it's been a pretty stellar year in the life of Bethany. I've done things this year I'd never thought I'd be able or want to do. I've grown so much. I've survived a semester of college. That in itself is an accomplishment.

In the same way, I don't feel the same sense of failure and missed opportunities that I always do at the end of the year. I'm trying to look at life as a continuous journey, a hejira, a neverending circle where I learn and make mistakes and accomplish until I finally reach (I hope) an end. The learning happened in my last life, and will continue into the next one. And don't ask me how a confirmed agnostic believes in reincarnation. I just know this isn't my first time around.

So I think I'm getting healthier in my outlook on my life, in general. My philosophy has gone from linear to cyclical, if you can understand what I mean. I know I'm allowing myself more leeway and room to make mistakes than I ever have before. But at the same time, I'm trying to tighten up, discipline my body and mind, and try to work through all the hate I sometimes feel. People say I'm disciplined, but I really don't think so. Sure, I'm disciplined at my art, but that's easy. It's something I love, so it's not hard to be disciplined. What I'm more interested in is being disciplined at the things I find less than pleasant, i.e., eating healthy and exercising. I have a feeling that will once again be my new year's resolution. One of many.

At right, my cat Charcoal. The source of my allergy woes but I love him dearly.

music: Hejira, Joni Mitchell
food: another bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips. there's some discipline, baby
read: nothing
sight: The Stand on TV
song lyric:
and looking down on everything / I crashed into his arms
- Amelia, Joni Mitchell