Just like many of you, I spent last evening reflecting on 2017. Parts of that year were amazing and parts were very bad as is the nature of Life. We always hope that the scales tip in favor of good however I must admit, some (not all) of the painful things in life, things I would definitely categorize as “bad”, have made me significantly wiser and stronger in surviving them.
My mother passed away in August of 2017. As an adult, I forgot how much I still needed my mother until she was not there any longer. Watching her last months was incredibly hard. But those same sad moments were also full of precious memories of words spoken in quietness that I will carry forever. Her death made me take a look at my living.
On the other end of the nature of life scale, my oldest child got married. Dress shopping, cake tasting, bridal showers and all things “wedding” were full of laughter and delight. Each step of the way brought up sweet memories of her from birth on and filled me with pride and love (and yes, even some melancholy moments). My youngest child started his dream job with a company dedicated to teaching technology to kids. He worked hard doing this on the side while holding down a full time hard labor job until he was offered a full time position. And he is excelling at it. Many nights I have struggled over what I could have done better as a parent however seeing my children successful and happy gives me a sense of well-being that all the ups and downs have served their purpose.
From a personal aspect, parts of 2017 were very satisfying. (I love that word… to fulfill the desires, expectations and needs of a person; give full contentment to.) It was a lot like Flying in the Wind. Free and liberating…reassuring me that I can do it; do life; my way. I published my first children’s book and attended a nationally known writer’s conference as a published author (and even voiced my opinion in the author round-houses). I started a side business that is doing well and has instilled me with confidence and excitement about talking with new people. I survived not only the 1 year mark of divorce but also seeing my ex happy with someone new. I learned to take time for myself doing things with a sole purpose of happiness….painting, theater, playing instruments, wine tasting and meditating. I learned to say No without guilt to toxic relationships and at the same time break down walls I had built to keep me safe from others. Some of these things may seem inconsequential to you but for me they were milestones!
But as exciting as it can be to let the wind take you here and there, I am ready in 2018 for a bit of order to my chaos. Not to stop the momentum, I still have boundaries I want to push, just with a bit of focus now. I have listed my goals in their simplest form and am looking forward to watching them grow as I grow.
1. Focus on writing (500 words a day with an accountability partner) to put out another book.
2. Focus on finances (weekly savings deposits that increase on a schedule) to build my savings and pay off debt.
3. Focus on business (weekly sales and posts) to increase my clientele.
4. And…Travel. I want to go somewhere exotic this year.
I read this great article by Christine Kane. Rather than making a list of resolutions for the New Year, she suggests choosing a word, letting the energy of that word guide and shape you, engage with it and take actions based on it. After careful contemplation I have chosen “RELEASE” as my word for 2018.
I love that this word can pertain to a letting go of something negative away from you as well as a letting free of something positive inside you. So I am choosing to RELEASE disappointments from the past year AND choosing to RELEASE creativity into this new year (and a new book release would be a nice perk). In following the daily challenges in the book Kindness Boomerang by Orly Wahba, today, January 2nd is Judgement Free day. That fits in nicely with my “Release” theme…both for others as well as for myself.
Happy New Year to you all! Looking forward to what this year’s adventure brings!