Resolving Your Need for Resolution


That crack on your ceiling is waiting


You could look back and be sad.  This year was supposed to be better, after all.  You woke up on New Years Day, just one year ago and glared at that crack above you on the ceiling.  Nothing felt right. Would it ever be right? How could you make it right again?
So you scrunched your eyes closed until you saw the stars on the black sky side of your eyelids.  And with the supernovas exploding behind your eyes, you made plans. You made a resolution to be better.
This year… I will lose twenty pounds. 
I will leave this place and never return. 
I’m going to be a better wife. 
I won’t yell so much.
I won’t drink so much.
I won’t cry so much. 
I will let him go, I know he wants to go. 
I will be nicer to my mother. 
I will find God.  
Peace, where are you? 
I will find peace.

By the time your toes hit the icy bedroom floor, you had it all figured out.   And the year began.


you learned all the words to the Apostle’s Creed
you joined the gym
you poured all the vodka down the sink (you only cried a little)
you called your mother (she said you were looking “thick in the middle”)
then you ate a whole chocolate cake (but only the cake part, you scraped the frosting into the sink)


you figured out how to use the elliptical without crying or breaking a kneecap
you joined the church
you told your husband you were sorry first (even if you didn’t mean it)
you called your mother (she said you “had hands like her great aunt Bertha”)
then you ate all the candy canes still left over from Christmas. And you sat on the front step, while an early spring snow (and your spirits) kept falling on the brown lawn
The air smelled like broken clouds and heartbreak.


you ran more than you walked on the treadmill
you prayed and asked Him to help you be patient
you only laughed when your son spilled his milk (and then his sister’s milk)
you called your mother (she said she thought the cat you gave her had rabies…So she gave it to the neighbor boy)
then you bit your nails until your jaw was sore


you drove by the gym and thought that should count for something
you wondered, really, if your small life even mattered to Him
you laughed at him when your husband made meatloaf (or was it Salisbury steak?)
you called your mother when you knew she was at the podiatrist
you weren’t hungry


you cancelled the gym membership
you realized that all you ever did was ask God for things you wanted
you told your husband that the sound of him chewing was going to make you choke him (but nicely and you’d never actually do it)
you drank two shots of vodka and called your mother (she told you that she loved talking to you more this year—after all those years you didn’t make any time for her)
you were supposed to find peace, but you can’t remember what it looks like.
What it feels like.

December 31,2015—evening

Same bed, same ceiling crack.  Your children are asleep in their rooms. Your husband is sleeping on the couch downstairs, the flicker of Dick Clark’s Rockin’ Eve making constellations on his face.
Your thighs rub together, there’s a bottle on the table of wine half drunk.  You’re half drunk.
You are no thinner, no nicer, no meaner, no happier, no lighter, no better, no worse. You failed your own test.
You could look back and be sad.  Maybe you should.
You could wake up tomorrow and try it all over again.

Resolve to resolve within you all the ways you let yourself and other people down.

Tell me again, how you let them down? By not being better than you are?
You could do this all over again. The list, the promises, the goals.
Or. This year make a Resolution not to look at what’s wrong with you, within you.
Resolve, instead, to silence that part of you that sees only the wrongness inside.
Tell your string of years, your Unresolved Resolutions to shut the fuck up.
Then you can go to sleep and see the eyelid stars.


January 1, 2016

You wake up to a quiet place. Get used to it, darling.
You’ve earned this silence. No long list of ways you should change or that voice calculating all your untold failures.
When you open your eyes, you do not first see that crack in the ceiling.  The first thing you hear is the stillness.  Where had it been hiding?

It’s five minutes into the brand new year.

And already, my love, my lovely, you’ve found your peace.



  1. Poor me…strep throat. LUCKY me! Discovered your blog….what a joy. I read every single entry. Thank you Nicole for sharing your world in such an inspiring, heart-warming, REAL way.

  2. I stumbled onto your blog in the most random way, but dang woman! You have a beautiful writing style and you speak so much truth and inspiration. I’m hooked. Thank goodness for people like you!


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