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Posts Tagged ‘2012’

Last year when I sat down to write my “end of one year / beginning of another year” post, I just couldn’t find it anywhere inside me to make resolutions. I’ve never been a resolution person. Not because I don’t want to be, rather because I’ve done it a few times in the past and by about February I either can’t remember what any of my resolutions were, or they are no longer things I want to spend the next 11 months trying to accomplish. Either way, my resolutions never happen. They get made and broken, made and forgotten, made and ignored.

So last year I decided I’m done with resolutions. What I did instead was come up with a list of realizations. Rather than looking forward to what I want to accomplish in the coming year, I looked back on what I had learned from the year just past; things that I needed to come to terms with, things that I needed to realize and let go of so I could start the new year fresh, unencumbered. So last year I wrote a post entitled “new year’s resolutions” and I was pretty happy with it so I thought maybe I would make a tradition of it.

And so, without further ado, here are my 2012 new year’s realizations:

1) fear the known, not the unknown – doing something new and different is scary but the idea of never trying anything, of living a life spent doing the same things over and over again, is even scarier.

2) do the work – dreaming is great, nothing in life can start without a dream, but a dream is just a beginning. If you want to make that dream into something more than just a beginning, you have to be willing to do the work. Dreams don’t come true just because you dream them, they need some good old fashioned hard work to push them across the finish line.

3) signs are suggestions, not directions – I spent much of 2012 waiting for ‘signs’ to show me the paths I should take and confirm that the decisions and changes I was planning to make were the right ones. And sometimes I found the signs and became confident that it meant I was moving in the right direction. But then I realized that although the sign may be confirming my choice, it did nothing to show me how to get where I wanted to go. I saw the sign and was still lost. The universe can provide the signs, I still need to come up with the map.

4) worrying about everything doesn’t protect you from anything – enough said.

5) if you have all the answers, you’re not asking the right questions – I seek answers in life, just as we all do, answers to all of the questions that run around in my head, big ones, little ones, a million different questions. I used to think life would be better if I could just get answers for all of those questions. Then I realized how awful it would be to run out of questions.

6) it’s okay to do things for no reason – self-reflection and contemplation are good things. Incessant knit-picking and analyzing are not. Sometimes I do things for no reason and it’s okay, I don’t need to take a pause and reflect on ‘why’ – I just need to chalk it up to me being me and move on.

7) leave space for the surprises – if everything is planned out, every minute of every day and every month of every year, there’s no room for the unexpected. No time left for those pockets of wonder that make life worth living. The plan will always be there but the pockets are fleeting.

So there they are, my realizations and lessons learned when looking back at 2012. I have absolutely no idea what 2013 is going to have in store for me but I’m excited for the ride, and hopeful for what may come my way.

Happy New Year.

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‘Tis the season to make big plans for the coming year and all the things we hope to do to make this one even better than the last one.  I myself usually make a few fairly informal resolutions, things I’m looking to improve on, that kind of thing.  This year however, I’ve also decided it’s perhaps even more important for me, personally, to also come to some realizations about the things I cannot, or should not, try to change; things that will always just ‘be’ and the sooner I realize that truth and move on, the better.

And so, here we go, my New Year’s Realizations:

1) bad things happen.  I can’t predict or avoid them, bad things just are.  I spend a lot of my time worrying about these bad things and trying to figure out how I would deal with them if/when they ever do happen.  It’s a huge time-waster for me and it’s time to realize that worrying about things that may or may never happen is unproductive and ultimately futile.  I realize that now.

2) good things happen.  As mentioned above, I spend a lot of time worrying about bad things happening.  However, I spend very little time imagining good things happening.  In reality, these good things may never actually happen in ‘real life’ but heh, they’re a lot more fun to spend time thinking about than the bad things.  I realize that now.

3) it starts with me.  If I want to do something, I have to do it.  I can’t spend my life sitting around on my butt waiting for things to happen ‘to’ me.  If I have an idea, it’s my job to take the next step because if I don’t, who else will? I realize that now.

4) it ends with me.  I can’t love you forever.  I can’t hate you forever.  I can’t be angry forever.  I can’t wonder what might have been forever.  It has to end sometime and I’m the only one who can decide when the end is.  I realize that now.

5) it’s okay to have fun.  Life is hard; it’s sad and lonely and depressing and monotonous and heavy and disappointing and unexplainable and draining.  And I can choose to focus on all of that or I can choose to accept that the bad stuff exists and have fun anyway.  I can laugh out loud on the train when I read something funny in a book.  I can tell a belly-aching (and perhaps borderline inappropriate) joke at a party. I can have another glass of wine and kick off my uncomfortable shoes.  It’s okay to have fun, I realize that now.

6) being a mom is hard.  I actually realized that long ago, like 5 minutes after my first child was born, but the part that’s taken me longer to realize is that it’s okay to admit that it’s hard.  It’s okay to say the words out loud and/or write them down on the page.  It doesn’t make me any less of a mom, it just makes it a teeny tiny bit easier when I admit that most of the time I have no idea what I’m doing, and that’s okay.  I realize that now.

7) words are just words.  Words can hurt people.  Words can make people laugh and they can make people cry.  I am responsible for the words I say and the words I write down but at the end of the day, they’re just words.  They don’t have to be perfect.  What I write doesn’t have to be perfect and even if no one reads them, that doesn’t mean they weren’t worth writing. As long as they come from my heart, they mean something, even if it’s only to me.  I realize that now.

Well there you have it, a few new year’s realizations to put 2011 safely to bed and drag 2012 out onto the dance floor to see what damage we can do.  At the very least, it’s going to be an interesting one!

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