Life is crazy. It’s full of ups and downs, highs and lows, and moments where you just want to shut the door to the world and hide in the closet. There are days when something makes you cry and then before you know it you turn around and laugh from deep inside your soul.
See the heart to the left here? I still remember that moment from 2019 when after a written attack against my integrity and character, I was in a very dark place. Someone who I thought was proud of me and loved me deeply opened my eyes to how they really felt about me. With the ugliness of their words, I doubted everything I thought I am, and everything I’ve done to be the best me I could be. Their bitterness got deep into my soul and rocked me to the core—making a black stain spread across my heart. I struggled for weeks, asking myself and God whether who I thought I trying to be was in actuality far from how everyone sees me. You could say I was in an emotional crisis.
One afternoon during this crisis, I took a walk with the dogs and where I usually turn left, I was drawn at the last minute to turn right. There at the end of the street were piles of pine straw scattered all across the road. As I was arguing with the universe about if I was doing everything I could to be a good person, I came across this perfectly formed heart that stopped me in my tracks. There’s no doubt to me that it was a message. A love pat. Whatever you want to call it. And it brought me a deep sense of peace when I most needed it.
Even so, as I’m going into my fiftieth decade on this spinning ball of energy, I find myself doing a lot of thinking about who I am, where I’ve been, and what impact I’ve made on the world. I’ve had my share of heartaches and crawled out of the muck to claim my happily ever after, rather than settling for what my beginnings tried to pacify me with. I’ve helped people and I’m sure I’ve unknowingly hurt people. I also know that when I love, I love hard. And when I hurt, I hurt deep. And I spend too much time agonizing over how some people choose to live their lives and whether I can change it. But 2020 is here, folks. And suddenly I look in the mirror and it’s frightening to see the face looking back at me with all it’s unfamiliar lines and wrinkles. Reminding me that I’m not here forever.
It’s time for me to re-set life and how I want to live it. Time to be true to me.
What does that mean? Like most wives and mothers out there, I usually put myself last, putting all my energy into raising my girls, caring for my husband, and doing things for others. I’m certainly no martyr or Mother Teresa, but I’ll admit that I have found it hard to be good to myself. So this is the year I’ll begin to focus more on my spiritual life and finding what brings me peace. Part of that I already know is tapping into more volunteer work, not for what others think of me but because it makes me feel good inside to do it. I’ve already got an idea of where I’m needed next, now I just have to make it happen. I will also focus on health, for myself and my Ben. After the hectic health scares of 2019, we know it’s time we make our well-being a priority, instead of an afterthought. I will continue to love hard, and let those who love me back know how much I appreciate them.
To those I love who don’t love me back, I will still love you, though I’ll no longer let your indifference bring me pain. I am choosing joy and you are welcome to be a part of it or watch from the sidelines.
Another important mission for this new decade is that I’ve got to stop blaming myself for any mistakes my adult children make, and realize this is now their lives and I can’t choose how they live it. I can only continue to try to guide them in the right direction but whether they take it or not is up to them. I will celebrate their accomplishments and sympathize with their troubles.
Though I must work to make a living, I will spend less time at my keyboard and more time loving the critters in my life, for I believe God sent them to me for comfort and such gifts need gratitude.
Continuing on a quest to build a stronger relationship with my twin sister will also be a big part of these next years. Such a close sisterhood can be difficult but I’m determined not to let us take each other for granted any more. We are two strong-willed and successful women and should be tackling the world together as a team and not as rivals. I will continue to strive to be a positive role model in the difficult lives of my grandchildren, showing them as much affection and care as I possibly can.
I guess you could say that this is the time I decide to work on my legacy.
Between all that, with continued self-motivated study, I will try to quench this thirst to know more about life, death, and why we are here. For starters, I believe we are all on this earth to learn lessons. Our souls each choose this journey already knowing what sort of obstacles we will face. How we live this life, and how we treat others and what ripples we send out to the universe are important for our spiritual growth. Do you have someone in your life who is difficult and you struggle with the responsibility versus the challenge? Think of it as a life lesson and treat it as though you are training for the biggest exam of your life. And know that when you’ve done everything you can to mend a connection and it never seems to heal, it’s okay to walk away and protect yourself. Let no one make you feel less than.
Keep working on self-improvement! We are all a work in progress. Especially me. I could give you a whole list of how I need to change but I think I’ll keep that to myself a while longer.
Above all, the world is a chaotic place right now so as we go into 2020, please choose kindness. And when you can’t choose kindness, at least choose a quiet peace.