My New Word
I always choose a new word for my life in the coming year. I have thought about this as the year has approached and I am going to do something that I have never done since that first year that I started doing this. I am not choosing a new word. I am staying with the word that I had last year.
In times past, at Christmastime, my month has looked like this:
We hosted a Church banquet with our church and then hosted a Christmas party at our house for our home group.
I hosted Muppet Christmas Carol for family and friends and had tons of goodies and appetizers and had a GREAT time.
I hosted a pyjama party for the ladies (watching a chick flick and exchanging gift pyjamas.).
I hosted an elegant ladies tea serving specialty tea in real china cups and offering yummy goodies on my beautifully landscaped Christmas table.
I hosted our family Christmas - every other year it’s on Christmas. On the other year, we choose a different day to celebrate Christmas.
I co-host an Empty Arms group and in this group, every year we went to the grave and lit candles and sang carols for our angel babies. Often we went back to our place for hot chocolate. Then during that season, many of us would all go out and have a nice dinner together because we have formed a tight group of friendships bonded by hard times.
On the 28th of December is my son’s birthday and because December is the hardest month to be born in, I always wanted to make sure that his birthday got recognized and wasn’t just glossed over because of the busy month. I have always had elaborate birthday parties with elaborate goody bags at my house for all of his friends. Then as his friends trickle out and go home, I clean up so that I can have the family birthday party.
On New Years Eve, I would (with the help of Tiffany - she was a big help in this) clear out everything Christmas and decorate the entire house with the theme of the murder mystery we were doing that night. This was a HUGE event and we invited tons of people and at that time, our church was primarily a young adult church. This would be a party not just for the midnight partiers but it would go way past midnight, into the wee hours of the morning.
This was all in between Christmas shopping, an evening set aside to look at the lights and Christmas bake exchanges and all of the other normal things one does for Christmas.
Are you tired yet?
This year, my December looked quite different.
You see, this is hard for me because I am a party girl at heart and I love to do everything. But one year, I had meningitis on the New Year’s Eve. We didn’t know what I had but we knew that I was sick so I just kind of propped up on the couch and as people came for the party (because goodness, we CAN’T cancel) I stayed there on the couch the entire evening in quite a bit of pain. I did manage to have fun though because I AM a social person.
The next year, found us in the ER with Jeremy’s blood pressure through the roof. At this time, Jeremy and I looked at each other and said “We are putting too much on our plate at Christmastime. Something has got to give.”
Over the last years, I have intentionally learned the rhythm of a slower life. I have listened to my body more - I have stopped pushing and pulling it into submission to my big plans and goals and listened to when it said I had had enough.
I have decided that if I felt stressed and my stomach was tied up in knots, I am to sit and reassess as to whether I am doing too much or not. I don’t want to live in stress anymore. I don’t want to be driven by programs and obligations or even parties. I don’t want to drill my body into the ground thinking that I have to do it all to enjoy the season.
This year was perfect. I chose only the things that were my priority this year. I chose family. I had Christmas. I had muppet Christmas Carol.
I had a beautiful tea with fabulous work friends and went to the sweet candle light service at Victory.
I am learning about myself. I am learning about what I really want - what really makes me tick; what really fulfills me and makes my heart full. I loved doing all the things that I did in the past but there was a season for it and the season has definitely passed. Sometimes we aren’t aware when our seasons have passed. Sometimes it ceases to be a party and begins to be an obligation that you are stressed over. Often we forget to listen to us.
Last year, was a crazy year. So much learning about myself; about what was really important; about what I really want to do and where I want to make a difference.
Last year, we had to let our Church of 10 years go. It was a painful time in our lives - one that still invokes questions and will for some time be a soft splintery spot in our heart.
Last year, I had a cardio version to help stop the palpitations that were plaguing me almost every day. I am much healthier for it. I am very grateful for that.
In August, I got to watch my brand new baby grand daughter enter this world. She is adorable!
Finally this last year, I published, not ONE but TWO beautiful colouring books with inspirational prose. Wow, something that I have wanted to do for years and something that has opened up a new way of thinking and living.
There were a myriad of other things that happened this last year - my almost 16 year old dog was laid to rest. My son moved out on his own this year also. Both of those things make for very very quiet evenings when my husband is out of the country.
When 2015 came to a close, I wrote a blogpost about my word. It was ME. (Check it out here) This year, it’s the same. There are still things that I need to concentrate on here. There are still things that I need to discover about myself. There are still things that I know the Lord is tugging on my heart to work on.
So I camp here a little longer at this word.
Not because I am not creative or I am mildly selfish, but because I am still discovering who I am - even more now than ever. I am discovering what I want, who I am. I have come so far, but not fully ready to move on, in a good way. NO need to move from this spot so quickly. NO need to run away. I am here. It’s important here. It’s sacred here and I will stay here until it’s time to look to other goals, other words, other focus.
I am here. Just here. And it’s beautiful.