As someone who grew up loving school and the structure of the academic school year, it became ingrained in me that September was the time for new beginnings. New Ross duds, fresh spiral notebooks and pristine pencil eraser caps. For the first few years after graduating from college, I felt an internal pressure to re-correct and get on the January New Year, New Me wavelength with the rest of the adult/non-student word. But it just wasn't clicking.
And then I realized that my own personal annual period of renewal begins in spring. Nature-wise, it makes sense because it's when flowers bloom and animals are awakened.
January through February is such a miserable time of year. its hard to feel very invigorated when you're going to sleep with socks on, cringe at the thought of the one minute my body is exposed to the cold air as I change for the day and your hair and skin are so dry you've become a fire hazard.
But I'm also starting to suspect that the real reason I become a pheonix rising out the the ash each spring is because I'm an Aries baby.
With the beginning of Aries season less than two weeks away, I can already feel my regeneration bubbling toward the surface. As always, Kanye says it best:
Fuck whatever y'all been hearin'
Fuck what, fuck whatever y'all been wearin'
A monster about to come alive again
I am a monster in spring. It's when my core confidence is at it's highest. And it doesn't hurt that after all these years I've finally learned how to do my homework so when the weather breaks 60 degrees, I'm ready to hit the ground running. I maintain my health, exercise, relationship, creative projects, work and friendships to the best of my ability during the winter so I can make the best of every last drop of spring and summer from day 1.
It's similar to preparing for a date. You can schedule that blowout, wax and facial, but the preparation is ongoing. Take care of yourself, read books, watch things, do things, make things. So when you sit down on that first date, you actually have something to talk about. But, I digress.
It all connected with me when I read Broadly's profile on Aries:
"There is a self-centeredness and fierceness associated with Aries, but, as the newborn of the zodiac, their screams and kicks are less about war and aggression than they are about their struggle to survive re-birth (the zodiac "dies" with Pisces and is reborn with Aries!). An Aries wants to tell the world, I'm here! The theme of rebirth and renewal is huge with Aries-just look at the holidays that fall during this sign's season, Passover and Easter...As the first sign of spring, Aries is optimistic that, just like the snow, all our troubles and worries will melt away. After being pent up all winter, Aries is ready to run free and start fresh."
General Resolves for the New Beginning
- Taking it outside. Hiking, biking, walking to work, walking my cat, powerwalking to podcasts, walking Green Lake with friends and iced coffee, tennis, summersaults at the park. :)
- Working what my mama gave me. Unfortunately, I didn't inherit my mama's tits and ass. But I'm talking about learning my mother tongue. My Vietnamese comprehension is stunted at the level of a small child and I'd like to be able to have more adult conversations with my mom and the rest of my family. I've started doing DuoLingo for Vietnamese and have learned really useful vocab like "dirty bat."
- Well-read and learned. I grew up being the biggest bookworm and my voracity to read tapered off after college. But it only takes one good book to get back into reading. For me, that was reading books on different facets of the fashion industry to inform both my personal interests and my work. And now I've got quite a TBR (to be read) pile growing. I'm currently reading and captivated by The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity by Esther Perel. Highly recommend.
- Watch it. I've often described myself as a recovering film major. Like with books, I don't consume movies the way I used to. I think it has a lot to do with both internal and external pressure to experience and metabolize films the way a film major is supposed to. And a self-consciousness of coming off as a pretentious prick, which is something I actively rejected while I was studying film.
- Dream on. A couple of years ago in the midst of the most guy-wrenching breakup I'd ever gone through, I was listening to the wonderful Don't Get Me Started (R.I.P), that week's guess was talking about how he came to Jungian psychology and dream work after hotting rock bottom and being in an intense depressive state. And after briefly thinking to myself, "My ex could use this to self-actualize." I quickly remembered that the relationship was over, and that what he did would never be any of my business again, ever, I realized that I could benefit to try dream work to tap into and marry my dark and light sides. I bought Robert Johnson's Inner Work as an introduction and manual, but held off because of the guests' warning that dream work can be a fickle and super intese thing when delving into it on your own. So I've been waiting until I'm in a good headspace to dip my toe into it. And I finally feel like I'm there.
- Friends first. One of the best investments I've made in the last few years is investing in my female friendships. Especially my friendships. I want to re-adjust my spring/summer budget to reflect that. Now that the weather's taking a turn for the better, I want to allocate more of my monthly budget for experiences with friends like grabbing coffee, happy hours, brunch, hosting at my apartment and impromptu hangs with the gang rather than spending it on material things like clothes.
To my fellow Aries brothers and sisters (my boyfriend, sister and cat are also all Aries, which is an episode of Snapped waiting to happen), happy birthday! And to everyone else, WATCH ME :)