new year, new me (a blog post by adam bates).

Each year in January I enter a cycle of ambition, inevitably followed by an overcast fogginess about this time in February. The lengths of my ups and downs vary, but the annual patterns are about the same. Every good story is about breaking free of cycles, Abraham leaving his family and moving to a new, foreign land in hopes of a new, different life: that's what makes anyone a hero. I want to be a hero.

There are things that I want and still more objects of contempt. This year, 2018, preceded by easily one of the worst years of modern civilization, is going to be a phoenix rising from ash if I have anything to say about it. And I do. That's why I have a(n) (underutilized) weblog. I want to be more involved with more politics on a more local level. I want to participate in theater. I want to further hone my craft of sound design. I want to make a publication-worthy D&D campaign. I want to become college-educated. I want to rise out of my economic station. I want to be fit, to live inside my body instead of feeling like two levitating cameras. I want to feel a deeper connection to God, or to my spirit, or be more unified with the whole universe. I want to be funny on stage & screen. I want to perform sad, stream-of-consciousness music. I want to do weekly talk therapy. I want to be debt-free. I want to become closer to my friends, share my experiences online for their browsing pleasure. I want to become more loving, for my family and my girlfriend and my girlfriend's family. I want to make more friends, become closer to my neighbors. I want to learn my philosophy. I want to write more. I want to practice meditation, learn EspaƱol, read challenging books and walk everyday, and start moisturizing my ashen, decaying hands.

There are all these things I want for myself, but there's so much more that I want for those people close to me in my life. If we do indeed shape our reality, I want to sculpt my community into one of a loving, peaceable atmosphere, and be myself a paragon of light and virtue that community can rely on. So I'm burning a lot of candles at both ends as I adapt to change, and yet it's been oddly sustainable. I feel like I should batten down the hatches now in anticipation of the lean months, but for now I'm making plans and following through. There's so much to do, so much life to live in a year. It's terrific and terrifying, to look at the immensity of time, especially as it passes. But time doesn't have to be a flat circle if you're a hero.

Adam Papes