I didn't make resolutions as such for 2014 but I did have a list of things I wanted to achieve and I certainly did achieve some of them. I think definitely the ones that were important, such as having a more positive attitude and moving forward. being myself, working on my fear of abandonment. A lot of those are things I will continue to work on in 2015 and beyond.
A bad habit I am going to break : My fear of abandonment Getting there
A new skill I would like to learn : Play the piano Simply didn't get around to it
A person I hope to be more like : I simply want to be myself I think I achieved this
A good deed I am going to do : I want to be involved in charity work - giving back Sadly not as much as I would have hoped
A place I would like to visit : Anywhere that I can see an elephant Hluhluwe - and what a sighting it was!!
A book I would like to read : Dune by Frank Herbert Sorry Mike - I've got it but I still haven't read it.
A letter I am going to write : To my younger self forgiving her for the mistakes I haven't written it but I talk to her everyday
A new food I would like to try : Anything I put here is likely to come back and bite me..... Fried Ice-cream on Friday so achieved
I am going to do better at : Moving forward and being positive Big achievement
Tomorrow we are down to the last 10 days of the year. I still shake my head at the speed at which this year has gone. Maybe it has been because I have had so much to deal with. Emotionally, mentally and physically the year took its toll and it has been pure determination (and the support of some die hards that wouldn't let me crumble) that has seen me come out the other side in one piece and stronger and better than I have been for a long while.
2015 holds in store some major changes again. Kyle should settle down fully into Boys Town. Nathan will be home-schooling. I will be going back to full day from February. Plus I will take on new challenges - personal and professional and hopefully continue to grow on the journey I am on.
So a good time to reflect on 10 questions....
Am I happy with where I am right now?
Yes I can actually say that I am. It has been a long hard year with a lot of tough decisions. A lot of which I had to make on my own. Although there was input from people in my life when it came to the crunch the final decisions rested with me and they weren't easy to make. With my therapy at an end and part of my medications reducing I feel 'balanced' for the first time in 4 years. Things are falling into place and it is a good place. So I can truly say I am happy with my current lot in life.
What am I passionate about and what am I doing to pursue my passion?
I am passionate about study and learning. My photography is obviously on that list of passions. As is my writing and blogging. I craft. I enjoy the wildlife - a newbie on my list. However it will all be about striking a balance.
On the study side I am doing some part time online course. No pressure to write exams but some interesting topics, starting with Forensic Science. My photography is with me daily - either with my camera phone or my Nikon cameras. It is as natural to me as breathing. So is my writing and blogging - another daily activity. Other activities will be slotted in, sometimes at the expense perhaps of writing or photography, but necessary to keep me balanced.
In fact I read a good quote about what is your passion the other day which I will share here :
"It's messing people up, this social pressure to "find your passion" and "know what it is you want to do". It's perfectly fine to just live your moments fully, and marvel as many small and large passions, many small and large purposes enter and leave your life. For many people there is no realisation, no bliss to follow, no discovery of your life's purpose. This isn't sad, it's just the way things are. Stop trying to find the forest and just enjoy the trees"
Who and what things are weighing me down that I need to get rid of and how will I do it?
I shed a lot of this excess weight in 2014. Anger, fear, friendships, groups on Facebook, reunions .... a host of things which I made decisions to not be a part of anymore. I think the whole point was boundary setting which I needed in order to get rid of what was weighing me down. Going forward it will simply be case of constant reassessment. Letting go of the unnecessary as and when it is needed.
What do I need to forgive myself for?
You know we all have things we have to forgive ourselves for... but we also need to live our lives and that means trying to not live with regrets. I could probably list 100 things under this heading. But I'm going to try not focus on negatives. Rather I want to simply focus on moving forward. As I go I will learn to forgive myself for my mistakes as I make them, accept them, own them and move on from them.
When did I feel most alive this year and what was sacred about that moment?
As odd as it sounds it would have to be the elephant encounter which I spoke about in an earlier blog piece. It was exhilarating and amazing to see such an amazing animal so close. What made it scared was the fact that in its presence you really appreciate your insignificance. While it may not be a predator it can still crush you like you are nothing but a speck of dirt... make you appreciate nature in all her glory and beauty - from the large to small.
What self-love actions can I practise on a daily basis?
My Morning Pages and Daily Walks which form part of the Artists Way course. Daily quiet time to reflect.
What do I want to let go of?
I think 2014 has seen me let go of a lot of negatives. Like most people there are still those thoughts of self-doubt etc that will always creep up. It is a constant process of being aware and reassessing your boundaries. Are you emptying your cup more than you are filling it. If you are then there lies your problem and it is time to sit down and list what is taking up your time and what can go.
What do I want to dedicate 2015 to?
A year of growth. There are various things I know I need to do. My health is important so I need to focus on this - get back to exercise and healthy eating. In a way working full day will aid this rather than hinder it. But I want to grow with balance so it will be about balancing work, family, friends and play. Making time for all that is important, including down time when I do no more than sit and look at the clouds.
What did I learn about myself in 2014?
That I have a resilient spirit. That I am worthy of being loved. That I can make tough decisions and still stay standing. That I can find pleasure in even the smallest things when truth be told it seems the world around me is blacker than black.
What did 2014 represent to me on my path?
2014 was a big year in terms of personal growth for me. I really came to understand the importance of boundary setting and I learnt how to do it properly! I've let go of a lot of negatives, allowing me the space to allow positive growth into my life. While a hard year I am grateful for it. I am grateful to all the people who have stood by me through it even when it got very rough around the middle of the year. In a way it has been a watershed year for me. From here on out I'm growing positively. While I know and understand there will be dark days I am now able to appreciate the darkness as I know the light will come.