I LOVE the magic of a new year. As cliché as it may sound, the start of a new year always feels like a new beginning for me.
Truth be told, 2018 was annoootthher tough year to get through. It’s funny how many others have shared that same sentiment with me. But what would this past shitty year mean, what purpose could it serve, without some post reflection and understanding to ensure this new year doesn’t follow the same suit?
2018 felt like a year of numbness, transition and stand stills yet the desire to move forward without really being equipped to do so. The hardest yet most enlightening part of 2018 was the mirror it held up to me forcing me to see myself in ways I’ve never looked at before. It made me meet parts of myself I needed to acknowledge and confront parts of myself I’ve denied or not quite understood. 2018 can be encapsulated and best summarized by a visual of me trying to out run many fears and the paralysis that would happen every time those fears would come close to catching up. FEARFUL is how I can best describe what I was struggling with for most of 2018.
Fear provoked me to chase friendships this past year unnecessarily, and have those friends watch me run. My fear of walking away from people and how that action might define me or how that might paint me prevented me from making healthy moves and creating healthy distances…the fear of being inadequate, unworthy, not good enough, not nice enough, not loving enough or too much.
I realized that it wasn’t simply the loss of having our own children I was struggling with, but it was the fear of what NOT having a “family” would mean for us….the “insignificance” or “shallowness” that could taint our future married life.
I was struggling with the fear of not being enough for Mom and Dad, not being able to provide for their needs in the ways they ask for and deserve and in some ways I sometimes feel resistant to….for probably a myriad of reasons. Fear of feeling guilty “one day” made me not want to put up or honour boundaries in my relationship with them creating a lot of chaos, unmet expectations and at times resentment.
Then of course this fear of getting older, less relevant, losing time, regrets for starting things so late…
Fearfulness led to a lot of perceived mediocrity, a lot of frustration and emotion, a lot of unproductive time spent, a lot of back and forth and a lot of vices or distractions pursued to placate the discomfort.
But it wasn’t all bad. In these dark places He definitely shone some lights. I met new wonderful people that re-inspired and reawakened me….people who spoke life into me without even intending to…we were surrounded by a strong community of family and friends and welcomed into new worlds that felt like home to us. It was a good year of taking care of my outsides and health, while wonderful women participated in a book club with me helping me unravel my insides. This year brought small opportunities of reconnecting with people, praying for others, sending encouraging messages to those going through difficult times, cooking food for friends, saying yes to things I would normally want to shy away from as an adult and other opportunities of accepting or extending love.
So what with this new year? Following the lead of a beautiful friend of mine, I’ve written down a list of 19 things I want to accomplish for 2019. Some of these things include silly things like “learn to mow the lawn” (which sadly I haven’t done since I’ve been married and have nooooo clue how to use our electric lawnmower lol!)….others include things like “growing a herb garden”, “less proving and more being”, “doing three road trips with my boys” or “creating a backyard oasis”.
Now seeing how fearful I was and the fear behind much of my indecision and non movement last year, I begin this new year present, plugged in, engaged, accountable, grateful and hopeful. Maybe accountable should be my driving word this year, owning my fears, owning my responses to them, and owning the path I choose to take instead. Don’t they say that life begins at 40??
Happy New Year! May it be a life changing one <3