For the first time in what feels like months, a chance to stop, breathe and process what has gone before these past 12 months... and to look forward and plan what 2006 needs to be for me.
And it's a choice I made consciously. Weeks ago I got the 'message' that tonight I have to be alone both to 'do' and to 'be' and it felt and feels now, exactly right.
My 'to do' is my Best Year Yet exercise, and though I know it may take hours (last year I think it took 2 days!) that's fine by me as it's one of those things where I get lost in time and it doesn't matter at all. There's also a ton of other things I'd like to do, but I may not get to them. We'll see... there's some (raw) chocolate ice-cream on the make downstairs at the moment, so I may have an incentive to stay up a bit later!
So far tonight I've given the ground floor of my house a complete clean through, including sorting out some long overdue cupboards in the utility room, and I've done 2 loads of washing and 2 loads of dish washing! I just find that I cannot think straight unless everything around me is in complete order.
I followed that with a long hot bath with a special aromatherapy bath soak and a lit scented candle, then a hairwash, cleanse and tone and eyebrow shape, and finally dried my hair and got dressed into much looser clothing. Mmmm.... feeling good!
Since then I've done numerous things all in the name of creating space and order, played some music (loudly!) and I guess the conclusion I've come to so far is that I am just one incredibly focused and happy cookie these days, but especially tonight. In fact, I've just rediscovered that I really love my own company. I've missed me! Now what do I do about that? Quite a lot actually, as taking better care of myself is already a given in my yet-to-be-formulated 2006 life revamp package, as I'll no doubt blog about in a few days when I'm all set on what exactly that looks like (still in the process of painting and moving offices at the moment ... as you do over the New Year when you're completely insane : )
I asked myself tonight what was my best New Years Eve ever? Two sprung to mind, both at opposite ends of the spectrum. The first was a 3 day retreat over New Year at The Old Stable House Centre in Newmarket. It was a spiritual retreat organised by the two wonderful Irish nuns who ran the centre, together with a male guest facilitator whose name I can't remember. There were about 8 or 9 of us, of both genders but mainly women, and what I remember most about it was the meeting of like-minded people that was priceless, the sacredness of the entire event, the dream board exercise which made it clear to me that I was ready to leave London after yo-yoing about what to do for months, and reading The Little Prince (a must read) for the first time. It was simply a magical 3 days and I think a little piece of that retreat will live on in my heart forever.
The second best NYE was spent in a huge, loud, noisy and smoky nightclub in Birmingham! It was freezing cold and I was with my best friend of the time, Louise, her boyfriend Michael and a group of his friends, one of whom was a student in Birmingham. We had a great night dancing (though I was having to be careful as I was wearing a very beautiful but very risque dress!), then we tried to hail a cab after midnight in the freezing cold. I think the wait was so long that we may even have ended up walking home - I just remember feeling frozen and my feet being in agony yet feeling very happy. I also distinctly remember us eating pizza and oven chips at about 2:30am when we finally got in, and, even though I was eating mainly raw back then, it felt like the perfect thing to be doing and eating right then. That memory will also live on forever...
Both evenings were obviously entirely different, but both completely perfect in their own way. Tonight perfection for me is staying home alone, although to use the word 'alone' feels completely wrong as I feel very much surrounded... surrounded by the energy of those who invited me out, those who love me, those who are thinking of me, candlelight, Christmas tree lights, silence, and just as importantly, I do feel that my soul is making that connection once again - the connection I only fully get (outside of meditation) if I have several uninterrupted hours alone when I can slow myself down long enough to step into the 'heartbeat of the universe'. And that, dear friends, is (especially after the past year) the only place to be for me tonight.
So my wish for you, wherever you may be, is that you are exactly where you need to be tonight and having the perfect, most enjoyable NYE for you.
Here's to a fabulous, majestic 2006! I hope you'll choose to share it with me and I look forward to seeing your comments coming through when you feel moved to do so... Let me know how I can support you best on your journey to Living in the Raw.
With respect and gratitude on this magical night *