Just like the previous New Year’s Days, my whole family and I welcomed 2019 by happily jumping while shaking our pockets full of coins. Filipino-Chinese tradition suggests doing so for good luck and fortune. And even if we do not have the tiniest drop of Chinese blood running through our veins, we took our chances. We have been through a lot of ups and downs in 2018, so we were really excited for a new clean slate, and a more fruitful, positive year ahead.
Unlike the previous New Year’s Days, the “no fireworks” policy was actually enforced. The unbelievable amount of exploding piccolo, watusi, and Judas belts were the norm, and they lasted for a minimum of 15 minute to a ridiculous maximum of 30 minutes. Now there are actual police forces in our streets, and the go-signaled fireworks only lasted from 3 minutes tops. A friend I talked to on Messenger later that day called that “an equivalent of a quickie”. It was for the best though, especially for my beloved dogs Noodle and Cacai and my baby Vienna—rather, Queen Vienna the Cat.
Just like one previous New Year’s Day, the Christmas tree displayed in our living room bears green and sparkling gold leaves with various red decorations. The last time this tree was used, my grandfather was celebrating with us, wearing his neatly-pressed baby blue buttoned shirt, black slacks, and shiny leather shoes, and his hair properly combed and worthy of the hashtag #hairgoals. He needed a metal cane to walk, but his positive aura and smile never fail to lit up the entire house.
Unlike the previous New Year’s Days, this is the first time we celebrated without my grandfather. And we normally have other people during the festivities—my father’s employees and my mother’s relatives. But this is also the first time in quite a long time that we welcomed the New Year with only one another—Mother, Father, me, and my three brothers. This is a significant change though because since the passing of Papa, our honesty, love and communication with one another has never been so apparent.
In a bittersweet way, the loss of a loved one can really bring people closer.
Just like the previous New Year’s Days, I closed the chapter of another year, with some question left answered, problems left unresolved, and a few people left to be forgotten. But unlike the previous New Year’s Days, there is one relevant person I want to remember forever. I know I have mentioned Papa way too many times on this post, but losing him really rocked my world. I love him so much, and I will never, ever forget him.
Just like the previous New Year’s Days, I open a new chapter for 2019 with mixed emotions. I am nervous but ready for the challenges ahead, and I am most definitely excited for new adventures and memories with my family and comrades. And unlike the previous New Year’s Days, I have never been this comfortable to say this: 2019, I am not fully prepared for you, but here I am anyway. And I will go through you with glee and fury.
Speaking of opening a new chapter, as early as December 20, 2018 I actually mapped out and wrote a game plan and further notes on my new red Moleskine weekly planner. One of the plans I have is (once again) updating this blog The Dispatch more often. Can I hear an “LOL”? Almost everyone knows that has been a struggle of mine for years.
In my defense, now I have a more detailed plan on how to accomplish my goals, especially my goal of frequently updating my blog. But you know what? I can and I will follow my plans, but I will just wing it when I can’t.
I hope and wish to everyone a successful, safe, and satisfying 2019 and beyond. Happy New Year, everyone!