A brand new year is upon us. We have new chances to make things right in our lives, new opportunities to grow, learn, achieve.
For me, 2013 was a mixed bag. I’m done with saying that years are “all good” or “all bad”. That’s not true. I’ve stopped focusing on only the negative things that happen and recognize that positives happen, too. Last year, we experienced some particularly challenging times, which served as a reminder that life is fragile. Extremely fragile. I cannot live as though another year here is guaranteed. It isn’t. I cannot make plans to do things “when I get the chance” because that chance might never come.
I sometimes (okay, more than sometimes) fail to comprehend the willingness to spend life “going through the motions” or “merely existing” for whatever reason. I observe people settling, making excuses, wishing, dreaming, suffering depression, feeling frustration and think, “Why?” Of course I understand that change is a daunting concept. Yes, I DO really understand. I have been in a situation where I spent most of my time complaining, but uncertain that I could do anything about it. I felt scared of what might happen if I took action. I was sleep deprived. I felt isolated from the people I trusted most. I had zero confidence. I had zero privacy. I had zero knowledge of the system. The odds were against me. How would I ever change what was happening? Where would I go? Who could I trust to help me? When was my courage going to kick in? Why would I put myself and my children in danger to change our situation? What exactly did I need to do? I didn’t know the answers to any of those questions but I knew that I was determined to not remain where I was. I knew that I didn’t want to be in that same place for longer than I had to be. I knew that life was passing me by and that I didn’t want to wake up one day, at 60-something, with a ton of regrets about what I coulda, shoulda, woulda done. Was it easy? No. Did I breeze through it? No. Did I feel stupid and clueless about what I was doing? Yes. Did I make mistakes along the way? LOADS. Was it worth it in the end? Hell yeah, it was worth it. And I would do it all again, in a heartbeat because I am far better off today than if I’d stayed where I was. Making those changes took a while because I had to plan things and exercise a great deal of patience as I waited for things to happen, as a result of my actions.
I don’t make “typical” resolutions at the start of every year because I believe it’s more productive to improve habits and make lifestyle changes over time. I take inventory of the aspects of my life that need improving and try to figure out better ways. For me, gradual changes prove more successful.
In 2014, I will continue to:
~ Be the person my mom raised me to be
~ Be the best mom, daughter, sister, friend possible
~ Show compassion when necessary
~ Pay it forward
~ Be accepting, understanding, patient
~ Take care of me
~ Live positively, in all aspects
~ Continue to learn, grow
~ Find solutions, not complain
~ Seize every opportunity
~ Practice gratitude
~ Take a day at a time
~ Focus on the journey, rather than the destination
Happy New Year (a little late) to everyone who reads this.