New Year’s Resolutions:
Every year, I made new year’s resolutions hoping to make great changes in myself, but I could never keep it by the end of the year. As a result, I stopped creating them. In my world, new year’s resolutions were only wishful thinking.
During 2014, my dad passed away from cancer, which was the hardest time of my life. I didn’t have any emotional capacity, so my goal that year was to survive and get through each day. By the end of the year, I succeeded at my goal, but at the same time I was tired of the grief and decided I needed to change. I felt like grief robbed so many parts of myself such as confidence and joy to a point where I didn’t even recognize who I was or who I was becoming. For the new year of 2015, I chose to focus on finding joy in the midst of emotional pain.
This joy didn’t come instantly because I decided I wanted it, but it was something that I had to be intentional about. When I thought of my dad, he was always a grateful person. Therefore, I decided I’m going to be thankful like him, so I started a thanksgiving jar where I wrote down my a thanksgiving each day on a slip of paper and put it into my jar. By the end of the year, I had a jar full of thanksgiving and gratefulness filled my heart. While doing that, I also thanked people who have helped me overcome the darkness and shined light into my life. By the end of the year, my mourning turned into joy.
Because I realized how I was able to successfully live out my chosen word for 2015, I committed to continue this tradition for the following year. As I pondered a new word for 2016, I noticed my potted pea plants had grown over the winter time, which I planted in fall and neglected until the new year. I was surprised that peas would grow and flourish in such cold winter weather. I saw hope in my peas, so that I wanted my word to be hope for 2016. I wanted to see hope in regaining the parts of myself that I had lost to my dad’s death.
Confidence was one of the biggest losses. In the beginning of 2016, I joined a grief support group called Grief Share because I needed to be around people who truly understood how I was feeling. In this group, I walked alongside acquaintances, who now I call friends, with hope that we would heal our broken hearts. I opened up like I never did before and found my inner voice again. By the end of the 4 months with the group, I felt like I was on top of the world as my new confidence arose. As 2016 concluded, I saw hope in myself in many ways that I never expected.
When 2017 rolled around the corner, I started thinking of a new word for this year. I was at a retreat and the word, adventure, popped out at me when I saw it in many different places around the property. Then, I thought about what would adventure look like in my life. If you’d ask me to go bungee jumping or skydiving, I’d think you’re crazy and would never put my life in danger. At the same time, I’m not the most cautious person who must think twice about everything decision. When I think of adventure, trying new things and getting out of my comfort zone come to my mind, I want to be more courageous; thus, I picked the word, adventure, for 2017.
My biggest adventure so far has been starting this blog. Though might not seem as thrilling as bungee jumping or skydiving, there’s the other exciting side such as sharing my stories and being vulnerable in my writing. On top of that, learning how to create a website has been a challenging journey. Despite that, I am enjoying this new adventure.
What’s your word for 2017? I hope you will think of a word for this year! Even though it’s mid-February, it’s not too late to choose a word for the year. Like I would say, it’s better to try than never at all.