Trying a new writing thing for the New Year: 365 days of writing prompts. I hope it works. It will be a mix of fact, fantasy and fiction.
Stroke of Midnight
Where were you last night when 2013 turned into 2014? Is that where you’d wanted to be?
The ball slid slowly down as the revelers all cheered, confetti scattered on the streets, numbers flashed on the screen: 10, 9, 8…
She’d already written her social media post, and when her computer clock hit 12, she hit enter. The party on TV would start a few seconds later. Her husband leaned over to kiss her. “Happy New Year,” he said.
“Happy New Year.”
They hollered wishes to their son and his girlfriend in another room as they carried on their own cozy celebration.
Hundreds were hugging, kissing, singing, and groping in Times Square.
Her husband stood up, washed down his champagne that had been open since 11 and said, “I’m done. I’m going to bed.” He leaned over to kiss her head. “Good night.”
She watched Facebook as the New Year wishes spilled across the page. Twitter was filled with the spew of a coach’s departure from his team. While she sat in her living room alone, she looked at the computer screen and realized she really wasn’t alone. She thought about other New Years. Times spent with her family, making hats and being silly. Times spent with friends, laughing and playing games. Times spent dancing, as if there were no tomorrow. Times long past and long gone. They usually didn’t do much for New Year’s Eve anymore. Maybe it was money, maybe it was stress, maybe it was that they didn’t belong, maybe they’d forgotten to have fun.
It didn’t help that the night started with a household emergency. Their propane was low enough to warrant panic that it wouldn’t last the night, but they didn’t realize it until 4:45 pm. This led to a phone call to the propane company which resulted in an exorbitant delivery fee on the last night of the year. Add to that a random catastrophe in the kitchen that led to the overwhelming feeling of impending doom for the coming year. This was always a hard time of year…and it never failed to kick her in the gut to remind her.
She remembered New Year’s 1999. Y2K was set to doom them all. The clock had struck midnight, and her mother in Texas called. Sting was on TV and was singing, “A Brand New Day.” They watched and listened together as the world didn’t end. Not that night.
Her mother would die a few years later and a part of her world would end…
She raised her glass to the ceiling. She raised her glass to her mom. The world would keep turning and moving on. For right now, this was the place where she wanted–and was meant–to be. She had many challenges to face, questions to answer, and meanings to explore. She was alone, but she wasn’t. And deep down, she knew it would always be a brand new day.