For weeks now, the chatter online has revolved around the welcome passing of 2016. It was a difficult year. Wars were waged between friends and neighbours over the US election. Celebrities we cherished left this planet. Violence and hate seemed to plaster the front pages on a weekly basis. It was most definitely a challenging year, for me personally as well. I watched my son deal with heartbreak, in that helpless way that only the parent of an adult son can understand. I saw an end come to some relationships in my own life and took steps to rebuild past friendships that haven’t received the attention they deserve. We dealt with health concerns in our families and most recently I witnessed the rapid decline in my father’s health and mental capacity. Seemingly overnight I stepped into that sandwich generation that is raising children and also assisting in the care and well-being of a parent. This is the reason for my extended vacation over the past two weeks and now I am returning a little refreshed and ready to take on 2017.
I don’t usually do resolutions, but this year I am choosing to make them and share them publicly for accountability. This year, and going forward, I resolve to:
- Avoid taking on more work than I can keep up with. This has been a challenge for me in the past but our family is finally in a position that I believe I can comfortably say no when there are no empty spots on the calendar.
- Take time for myself every day. Whether it be to read a book, exercise, meditate or watch trashy television shows, I know I need that time just for me.
- Do something out of my comfort zone at least once a month. I started doing this a few years ago but it fell to the wayside recently and it’s time to start again.
- Live a healthier life by making better food choices, moving more and drinking less.
- I will stop hiding who I am. I live with anxiety, at times it is so severe that I lash out at people I care about, or I retreat inside myself. I have always felt like I needed to hide this part of myself and I feel anxious just typing the words today, but as I watch one of my children travel down the same path I understand the importance of being open about it. I know it isn’t something to be ashamed of and those who pass judgement about it are the ones with the real problem.
- Assume that people like me, and let them know that I like them. Everyone appreciates a compliment now and then!
- Accept myself as I am. Live as if each day is the last without worrying about grey hair, wrinkles or extra pounds. I’m not going to miss out on life over such trivial things.
Before I close and carry on with 2017, I do want to acknowledge all of the amazing things that happened in 2016.
- My son was granted a wish by the Starlight Foundation and we spent a week in Hawaii at Disney Aulani. He visited Pearl Harbour and toured a WWII bunker, which was amazing for my history buff of a boy. It was a memorable vacation with all of my children and my husband and we all fell in love with Hawaii.
- My son was well enough to return to school early in 2016, ending our homeschooling time together and giving him back his peer group that he was missing.
- I was a part of the Sunwing Family Travel Expert Panel and had a travel article published in the Sunwing magazine, as well as several online. This is a path I hope to continue along and I started taking two travel writing courses this year to make it a reality.
- I went on many wonderful work trips through the year including Mont Tremblant, Jamaica, Orlando, Amelia Island, St. Augustine, Daytona, Florida Keys, Mexico, Niagara Falls and a Caribbean cruise.
Here is to an amazing 2017!