Grab a cup of tea and settle in for a two part post…
FP Brigette on Free People reflected:
A year can go by in the quickest of flashes. And while each successive day may seem to differ just slightly from the last, when a year’s worth of those days has passed, we may find ourselves in an entirely new place from when we began.
While the past must stay in the past – as dwelling will do us no good – I think that reflection is an important component of personal growth. Looking back at a period of time all at once, like a snapshot, can allow us to see what we’ve accomplished and how we’ve grown – spiritually, physically, emotionally, and more.
One of her ideas is to do a little comparison chart of where she stood at the beginning of the year vs. the end of the year.
- I’m in better physical shape than I have been in a long time (dare I say college days?)
- I’m calmer now and have learned to express sadness and frustration in a way that isn’t anger
- I’ve established a healthy emergency fund, which helps me to sleep at night
- Yet somehow my insomnia is still present, but I’ve discovered the power of ZzzzQuil
- I laugh more
- I travel more
- I eat out less but cook more (and try more new recipes)
- I read more
- I have a better plan for my upcoming retirement (which is under 15 years away!)
- I garden more
- I talk to the kids more
- I get out more (with new friends and old friends)
- I have a more concrete idea of what my future will look like
In looking over the year, I’ve made some discoveries.
My Parents’ Marriage – even though my parents were together for almost 50 years prior to my dad’s death, their behavior towards each other during that half century was in no way a good example of how to treat a spouse. I figured out how wrong they were.
My Anger – I discovered that my hurt, fear, and frustration came out as anger, even if that wasn’t my intent. But as the saying goes, actions speak louder than words and the road to Hell is paved with good intentions. Interestingly, I have not felt anger towards Husband #2 for leaving or wanting a divorce. Sadness, yes. But Anger? No.
Traveling – No matter where I end up or what I do, travel will always be a big part of my life. Even if for some strange reason I never step foot off of this continent, there is plenty for me to discover in this beautiful country by driving the road less traveled. In my blood, I know I’ll end up in Europe and Asia and anywhere the words “foodie paradise” appear in a travel brochure. I love all parts of getting away, from the planning, the execution, and the coming home.
It’s OK to ask for more – Wanting more is not a bad thing. Arbitrarily expecting life to give us more on a silver platter is not OK. Without the drive for more, our species would have died out hundreds of years ago. But from the beginning, the desire for more has motivated humans to make great strides in personal lives and the bigger picture. I am extremely grateful that Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Edison, and Louis Pasteur wanted more. I, too, want more. I want more love, more conversation, more snuggling, more knowledge, more security, more cool summer days, more hummingbirds in the garden, more sharing, more intimacy, money, and more freedom. The interesting thing in all of this is that I won’t get more unless I’m willing to put in the work to earn these items. Even winning the lottery requires an effort to buy a ticket.
At this very moment I want more chai tea. I better go and get it for myself. More revelations tomorrow.