When the children were small we started a ritual. Since their favorite fairy tales were mostly about dreams coming true, I wanted to help them make their dreams come true. So we started a Wish Box. That first year we rode our bikes to the Thames in the dark, lit candles, read a poem. Warm cinnamon cider from a thermos for them, brandy in a flask for us. We breathed our wishes into the river. At home we wrote them down on little index cards, packed them in a chocolate box we decorated, closed the box, breathed and wished hard. Ate the chocolates.
With time our rituals have become more elaborate. Now we drink champagne, eat foie gras, open the box of Last Year’s Wishes and share the scribbles that remind us where we were in our lives a year ago. This gathered moment of recollection has become one of the most vital and joyful events of our year. Then another glass of champagne as we sit silently and pick up our pens. We write with intent.
Those tiny index cards have now become outsized tomes. Gone is the childlike ability to wish for only three things. The Old Wish Box is stuffed with dreams for ourselves, our loved ones, the whole wide world. We place our wishes in the New Wish Box, breathe intent into them, see our dreams take wing.
After everyone has gone to bed, I close up the box, pack it carefully in a secret drawer and wait for the dreams to sprout in the darkness of winter.
Happy New Year. Wishes of joy.