I have to be open about my disdain for New Year’s resolutions. They never cease to make me feel like a loser. I worry that my reflection on the year gone by and my hopes for the year ahead will fall flat. Which is probably why January
3rd 4th 7th 10th* has me finishing up my Obligatory New Year’s Post.
There’s no way to wake up on December 31 without thinking about what lies behind you, and what may lie ahead of you. As a child twelve months seemed like an eternity to me. At 43 I now how quickly the calendar pages turn.
I am a history lover. Not in the sense that I memorize facts and dates, mind you. I don’t. I do love reading about the past, though. I’m often astounded at how inventive and genius ancient people were, but also humbled at how little they knew. I know that others will look back on my present as their history and think the same. I also don’t think you can move forward if you don’t accept where you are and where you’ve been.
I’m advocating reflecting, not dwelling.
I don’t always share it, but I usually pick a word for the upcoming year, one that I feel that is in line with the Holy Spirit’s desire for my life and one that I feel will encourage me. Last year my word was JOY, and I have to say 2016 was quite a joy-filled year for me and for our family. We found community, friendships have blossomed, and life just feels more…settled.
As I look back on that we’ve learned this year I see that we have grown so much. We learned some hard lessons about harmful relationships and some wonderful lessons about healthy relationships. We rediscovered the treasure of older friendships, too. Keeping up with friends after moving to a different city is tricky, to be sure, but SO worth it. It’s interesting that each of us has stepped out and made friendships on our own, too. This is new for my introverted people. 2016 was our year for relationship maintenance and formation.
Not every moment was joyous, but every moment added to my joy. Even the tough stuff.
As 2017 was a approaching at warp speed I decided it was time to figure out my word for the upcoming year. I woke up on December 31st and knew that my word for the New Year would be ACCEPTANCE. It fit for so many reasons. Here’s a few:
Accepting where I am in life, what my life looks like, is important to keeping me from feeling down. Always wishing for something else, or allowing myself to feel that some other kind of life would be more ‘normal’ keeps me trapped somewhere that I just cannot be.
When I accept myself, my flaws and my good qualities, makes me feel way more relaxed.
Accepting my family for who they are as individual helps all of us who live here. It goes back to wishing for something else – my people are who they are and desiring them to be different doesn’t give me room to embrace who they are. It also doesn’t give them room to embrace who they are.
Accepting that tidy is not permanent, that Legos can be scooped up, and that pee can be wiped off the seat helps make me less crazy.
Accepting who was voted in as President makes it easier to make a plan for how to move forward as a citizen of this country.
Accepting that people I love voted differently than me, hold religious views outside of my own, and parent their kids differently can be…tricky. Remembering that we’re all doing our best, though, makes it less so.
I accept that my hubby will be offered an amazing job in 2017 – and that he will accept it.
I accept that each day is different than the one before it and that having a plan does not mean that the 24 hours will go the way I planned it.
Well, I’m learning to accept that one.
It’s easy to get into the habit of always striving, always working toward something else. I feel like it’s trending right now, this whole ‘accept where I am in life and embrace it’ mindset. Maybe it’s because I read a lot of almost-forty or definitely-forty authors and bloggers. I don’t know and I don’t care. If being 40-something means it’s easier to accept the life I have then yes, please and amen!
Goals aren’t bad, and I will continue to have those, BUT I need to be realistic about where I actually am before I can move forward.
Like, I’m overweight. I accept that now. Especially after I stood in front of the mirror, naked, for 30 minutes. I now also accept that I have gotten here by overeating and not exercising (much).
Up until 2017 (give or take) I was convinced that I was not that overweight, that sizing had just changed. That I had a metabolism problem. That no matter what I ate I gained. That it’s just baby weight (but now my baby is 7).
Nope. Turns out that eating a lot of sugar and thinking of house cleaning as cardio does not make you Cindy Crawford even though she said that’s how she stayed in shape.
That woman lied in her Cosmo interview 25 years ago.
Anyway, now that I’ve accepted where I am I can decide if I want to do something about it.
I may. I may not. I don’t know. I’m still at the acceptance phase of my weight loss journey so I’ll let you know.
Though, honestly, since I’m already 43 I’m prone to just wait til I get to heaven to get a new body.
Size 8, please.
I have to acknowledge, though, that 50 is the new 40…so in reality I have 7 years before I reach true middle age. Now I have to accept that and consider doing something about it.
In the meantime, I’m fine with how I look and who I am because I know whose image I’m created in. I accept that this body isn’t permanent.
So, 2017 will be my year of ACCEPTANCE.
I’m going to accept the good and the bad as part of being human.
I accept that I’ll get some things right and some things wrong.
I accept all the grace that Jesus has available.
All. Of. It.
I accept that sometimes I want to be around people and sometimes I don’t.
I accept that I pretty much always want to do the thing I shouldn’t want to do and don’t want to do the thing I should want to do, just like Paul said.
I accept that I’ll probably never get the lyrics right, that I’ll never be a football fan, and that, at times, life may be harder than I would like.
I also accept that Jesus will always be my soft landing.
So, do you have a word for 2017? Let me know by sharing in the comments.
Or maybe you hate that kind of thing? Perhaps you find it forced. That’s okay too. I accept you whatever your likes and dislikes.
And, if you like what you read here, share it with your friends, too. 🙂
In the meantime, stay warm, and be brave.
*Our internet went out last night just as I was ready to post. Seriously. That happened. Dad and I fixed it though. All is well.