52-weeks ago I shared my intention for 2016 by posting the below on Instagram. Instead of making a New Year’s resolution, I adopted a word to guide my year. I chose the word balance for 2016 because I tended to be the type of person who had tunnel vision. If I was going to be a good wife, I thought I had to focus on that 100%. If I was going to have a successful career, I felt that I needed to work 85-hours a week. I was wavering on whether or not I wanted to be a mom because I had no idea how to do that. I had a hard time balancing all of the things that were important in my life, so I forced myself to figure that out. If I was grading myself for my performance in 2016, I earned a solid B.
2016 was a hell of a year. It’s a year that rocked me to my core. But in the end it deepened my friendships, strengthened my marriage and solidified my faith.
My mother-in-law was hospitalized for 54 days while my husband spent 18 hours a day by her side. I spent 125 nights in a hotel and flew 72,600 elite qualifying miles on American. If Mr. Wonderful and I ever wondered if distance made the heart grow fonder, 2016 let us figure that one out. I learned that most of the things in this life are out of our control and no matter how hard we work, how much money we make, or how intensely we love, the chips still fall where they may. I took the leap of faith towards motherhood and just as soon as I’d come to terms with what it meant to be a mom, I had the rug pulled right out from under me (see my recent posts for more on that).
And here we are again. Another year older and another chance to strengthen ourselves and our relationships. My word for 2017 seems to be a good complement to balance and it’s also something that I have very little of.
Here’s the thing about me, when I put my mind to something and decide I’m going for it, I develop a plan and strategy to get there. But because I have a plan for everything, I lack the ability to let things just happen. When I decide I’m ready for something, I just want to get there already and I find I often miss the journey.
When I think back on 2016, it’s so true that I missed the journey. I focused on how to create balance, but not how to enjoy the balance that I had created. With every challenge and heartache that we faced in 2016, I just wanted to solve the problem and move on. I created a strategic plan for how to move on from it; to get passed it and find happiness again. I wasn’t going to let myself wallow in sorrow. But by focusing on how to get from point A to point B, I missed everything in between; I missed the lessons. It’s almost as if the things that were happening throughout the year were telling me to slow down, to take a minute and look around me, and I wasn’t listening. On November 6th, when I heard the words, “your baby is dead,” my world came to a screeching halt. The entire world was dead silent. Life was screaming at me, “Stop!!!,” and then it walked away and left me alone in the silence.
And in the silence is where I found my word for 2017:
I needed to practice patience with the life circumstances that are handed to me, especially those that don’t go my way.
I needed to practice patience with others. And I absolutely needed to be patient with myself as I tried to find a way to heal.
Cheers to a prosperous and patient 2017,
What’s your one word for 2017? Join the tribe. #oneword365