New Year’s Eve is upon us. As usual, our plans for tonight didn’t solidify until a few days ago because we’ve been a little busy. I’ve had family around and have been in and out of town with them and with the kids. Then, some friends who used to live here, but moved away, decided to come down for a week. So I’ve had to go to the beach and out to dinner. Fun, but busy.

My husband is not a big fan of going out for New Year’s Eve. And I’m fine with that. So tonight, we’re having a dozen or more people over. I’m thinking of it as kind of an Open House. One friend is stopping by with her family on the way to another party. Another friend is coming over after she is at another party. And a handful are going to come and camp out for the evening and eat good food, make a few toasts and watch the ball drop, if we can stay up that late.

Last night, I was going through my closet, trying on a few things, hoping to figure out what to wear this evening. For some reason, I decide to do this 15 minutes before I was supposed to go out to dinner. One of the items that caught my eye in my very messy closet (New Year’s resolution to clean it out) was a top I had worn 6 years ago, on the first New Year’s Eve I ever spent with my current husband, when we had been dating a month. It was a gorgeous top from Anthropologie that had been on sale. I wore it with a pair of tuxedo pants. The top has a fitted tan bodice, almost like a corset, that zips up the back. And two thick lace straps that were sewn into the bodice. Very sexy. It fit me perfectly back then.

I’ve lost some weight recently so I figured I would try it on. I got it over my head and into place and even managed to zip it up the back. It wasn’t easy to do by myself but I didn’t want to call downstairs to my husband for help because then he would say “why aren’t you getting ready to go to dinner?” The top was a little tight but it has some spandex in it and it looked great. And wow, was I ever impressed with my sexy, hot self. And ecstatic that it fit and I could wear it for New Year’s Eve. That was easy.

Then I turned around to view the back of the top in the mirror and made an Incredible Hulk type move, and the zipper split from top to bottom. I was crushed but realistic. It had been 6 years since I had worn it. And at this time six years ago, I had just gotten out of the hospital, after being there for four days, and was recovering from an abscess on my kidney. An abscess caused by a UTI gone bad. So I was pretty thin. Being sick, and eating hospital food, does that to me.

But now I couldn’t get the top off. I was still having ideas of being able to get the zipper fixed and wearing it on some other occasion. So, I turned it around and tried to bring the zipper pull down the length of the broken zipper but it wouldn’t budge. Then I just tried to rip the whole zipper off. Now I was pissed. It was almost as if the top was laughing at me. “Ha ha, you thought I would fit you, you crazy old fat lady.” So, I ended up finding a scissors and cutting through a seam and freeing myself from the top but not before the zipper cut my right breast. If not for the nudity, the whole thing would have made for an extremely comedic YouTube video.

So, I’ll be wearing something else this evening. The tuxedo pants still fit so maybe I’ll just find a top to wear with that. Or go buy a new dress. But it really doesn’t matter what I wear. I’ll be home, eating, laughing and drinking with my husband, friends and family. And feeling lucky. Lucky and thankful that we made it through another year happy, healthy and a little wiser. It was a really good year but it went by way too fast. I looked at my New Year’s Eve blog entry from 2008 (Sparkling Wine) and feel that I’ve kept some of my prior resolutions but there is always room for improvement. And I’ll keep working on that.

But I woke up in the middle of the night last night thinking about what I’ve learned this past year and the ill-fitting broken top seemed to be the perfect metaphor. I can’t make something fit me if it isn’t the right size. I can’t make what’s worked for me in the past fit my present situation. Everything that I thought I knew about how to be a wife, a mother, a step-parent, a daughter and a friend has changed as we have all changed. And I have to change with it.

So this is my New Year’s resolution: to be cognizant of the fact that who I am, and how I interact with the people in my life, has to be constantly evolving and adapting. Because that’s just how life is.

So, Happy New Year! Hope it is a good one for you, your best yet.

PS Anybody want a slightly damaged, but attractive, size 2 top? Must know how to sew.