Just to forewarn anyone who might think this leadup is going to something inspiring or moving or dramatic: this blog entry is going to be about nailpolish.
Here’s a thing about how I handle New Years: I don’t really make resolutions. My basic theory is that if there’s something I want to change, I probably just… will, when I’m ready to, and if I’m not ready to yet, all resolving to do it will do is make me feel like a failure when I don’t do it. But my general goal is to feel like I’ve made some sort of forward motion throughout the year, so that when it comes to late December, I don’t feel like I’ve been stagnant in the last 12 months. Forward motion doesn’t need to mean huge changes, just that I don’t feel like I’ve basically wasted my time. Here are some things I did last year that I think are worth noting, life-wise:
+ Attended to a writing workshop and shared my novel with other people. This was intimidating, but awesome!
+ Spoke on two panels at WisCon – one on love triangles in young adult novels and the other about magical girlhood, ie, fantasy aimed at little girls. These were both awesome. Too bad I never got around to blogging about them. Whoopsie.
+ Was significantly more social than I’ve been since… ever. I am a huge introvert who lives largely inside my own head, and I’m generally comfortable with that; however, I often forget that I actually do like being social as long as I have plenty of time alone to recharge after. Figuring out my limits and boundaries with social interaction: a pretty cool thing.
+ Took a significant and awesome promotion at work.
+ Learned to paint my nails.
Yes, that last one is worth noting, on several levels.
One: I have been a nail-biter for years, and painting them has helped me break that habit. My nails now regularly get long enough that I have to file them.
Two: Nearly all of my hobbies involve being on the computer in some way — writing, blogging, staring mindlessly at my tumblr dash. Plus I work online all day. I wanted to find something to do to occupy my time away from my monitor and the internet. Not that I don’t love the internet. I LOVE THE INTERNET. But I also have wrist pain and my eyes sometimes need a rest. Nail painting takes concentration. Especially because…
Three: I graduated to nail art. Mostly simple nail art, but still! And this is the real reason I’m writing about it, because, as silly as it is, it’s a very big deal for me. I am a perfectionist with zero artistic talent, which means every time I artify my nails I have to take deep breaths and overcome the instinct that tells me THIS IS TERRIBLE, EVERYONE WILL SEE YOUR MEDIOCRE NAILS AND LAUGH AT YOU, TAKE IT ALL OFF NOW BEFORE YOU EMBARRASS YOURSELF.
But it turns out people don’t actually do that. Not even so much because most people are not enormous jerks (though mostly they are not), but because I am my own worst critic and most people’s reactions are closer to hey, cool! than anything else.
Also it turns out that even if you are, like me, not at all artistic, you can get better with practice if you don’t give up just because you started out mediocre. My nursery school class put on a play to that effect, back in 1987. I wasa frog that didn’t know how to ribbit yet. Apparently it just took a really long time for that lesson to start sinking in.
Anyway. Under the cut are some pictures of nail polish.
Happy New Year!