A new year used to mean a new pencil case, new erasers, new binders. Things full of promise but not yet stained by their purpose. I remember when resolutions were to work harder, get better grades, lose weight, and save money.
Last new year, my resolution was to simply get through the year. I knew my mum wouldn’t be with us at the end of 2012, and that it would be tough. The hits just kept coming. Yes, we lost my mum. We also lost my son’s best friend – a beautiful 14 year old girl who was so very full of life and then had it snuffed out. People I love so very much have been very ill. Constant hospitals, medical testings, sterile environments. I have been ill.
Death lingered, hovered and taunted me all year. I truly suffered in 2012. While I also did some courageous things in 2012, it certainly took a toll.
I remember the sense of security that comes of simply knowing those I love will be there tomorrow, next week, next month. That normal feeling that everyone is going to be fine, and the biggest illness is a virus that passes in a day or two. You can plan coffee meetings and movies, scheduling up the calendar with confidence that everything will happen as planned. When you feel normal, and that everything is in its place, you don’t spend time appreciating it. You take it for granted. As you should. You just keep putting things in your diary, even months ahead. Because you just know that you’ll keep the date.
I’m having some issues doing that. I fear death will strike again and the anxiety attached to that fear doesn’t leave me alone. It’s haunting me. I have found myself having to sit down and dissect my emotions, reassuring myself there is no basis for the fear. But it’s not going to last. I don’t wake up anxious every day any more. I’m getting better at not thinking of having to be brave, but instead feeling confident.
Everything will be okay.
Every year for as long as I can remember my mum gave me a diary for Christmas. She would put all the family birthdays and anniversaries in on the necessary dates. She would paint my requested image on the front. I would wait eagerly for the diary because there were always things that needed to be scheduled before Christmas gifting time.
This year I bought my own diary.
Two days ago I sat down and transferred all the big dates from my 2012 diary into 2013. Interspersed with happy birthdays and anniversaries are tear-filled memorials, and painful memories. I transferred new things into the 2013 diary, that will be first anniversaries of those occasions.
The front cover of my 2013 diary will not be painted. My mother’s writing will not prompt me to remember birthdays.
I will have to write all of 2013, from start to finish. I will do it all myself, for myself, focused on the things and people that mean the most to me.
Mind, Body and Spirit
I am glad that my resolution this year is not the same as last year. I am not just surviving the year, because I don’t need to. I am not going to be brave in 2013. I don’t need to be brave.
I achieved some good things in the last months of 2012. My work schedule is solid, so I’m keeping that. It provides a necessary separation and balance between home and work that makes me eager and engaged in both locations. It works.
My physical health suffered a lot through 2012 as weariness took its toll. I’m ready to rediscover the balance of physical fitness and health I had at the start of last year. I’m proud to say that Nutrisystem is going to hold my hand again, and just like so many who fall off the healthy wagon, I’ll get back to where I was. Spiritually I am in a good place. I am grateful that my friend Leslie encouraged me to find my place, and God comforted me with a very immediate understanding that my church home is at Pine Street Church in Boulder. This year I want to expand further my engagement with my church, and look forward to beginning a craft group there.
I am so grateful to have my dear supportive friends and family. I am grateful that this year I don’t need to be brave. I am looking forward to being normal, to putting dates in my 2013 diary weeks in advance, and not worrying about whether everything will be in place when that date arrives.
Life is good. You just have to look for the shiny bits.
PS: I was looking for a good pic to go with this post. One of me being normal. I couldn’t find one. This surprises nobody.