It is New Year’s Eve. It’s the first Christmas and New Year without Sheba. My eyes mist and my throat tightens. It is the way of nature. There’s birth, life and then death. A cycle complete but not an ending. I like to think that Sheba came to me in the guise of a fox the other evening while skiing in the park. I went or fell down two little hills. A little fox came and stayed with me till I was on my feet again. I thought it was a cat at first. I called ‘here kitty’. It came within a certain distance, crouched down and watched me all the while. I felt we were part of each other, breathing in and out. A miracle of connecting. Perhaps it was Sheba coming to check on me. I remember her favourite cuddly was her little fox with a squeaker in the head and tail.
Happy New Year has come and gone. Not as much fuss as other years but it was still marked with an explosion of fireworks at midnight. I did not feel I missed much. Most of my new year’s eves have been pretty quiet affairs. Sometimes it can be the loneliest night of the year for many people. I know that I’ve often felt a misfit and a failure on many of these evenings. One year my then husband and I attended a New Year’s Eve party at his boss’s house. There was a pot of chili on the stove, people here and there. We all wore party hats and had whistles streamers. At midnight we dutifully blew our whistles but none of us seemed at all pumped. It was the saddest party of all times. It still left an impression on me after all these years.
I’m well past my prime and finally I’m okay being left out of the hoopla. What I mean is I’ve never been a party girl but never been brave enough to admit it. It’s a natural thing to want to fit in, be part of the crowd. I wonder if we are all like that – putting up a front. So for the first time, I don’t have to make up a cover story for New Year’s Eve. I did nothing. So there is a silver lining to every cloud, even Covid-19. I probably wouldn’t have taken up skiing either if it didn’t happened. I would have missed out on our moonlight skis. I would have missed the fox/Sheba encounter. I wouldn’t have had this pause to think, to question the many aspects of life, of relationships, of my past thinking /behaviour, of where to next and how to get there.