Every New Year people post the same old cliche quotes like ‘New Year New Me” and believe that somehow all the pain of the past year will be magically swept away because they have flipped to a new calendar year. Sure we all need hope that things will get better, but making unrealistic New Year’s resolutions that are gone and forgotten by January 15th will only set you up for disappointment.
That’s why this year; I’m taking a different approach. In the past, I’ve reflected on the past year and looked at all the things that had gone wrong hoping the new year will be different. Don’t get me wrong, the past year has been a real bitch. I left a job I hated at UCLA and was unemployed for six months, I fell behind on my mortgage, my car needed over $6,000 in repairs, my basement flooded, my pool turned into a swamp due to a broken filter, and the only job I could find pays me half of what I was making, so I’m forced to sell my home. It was pretty shitty if I look at it threw that negative lens.
I decided that I’m not going to do that anymore and I’m going to look at all the things that went right. The truth is, all of those things did cause me tremendous stress and challenged my strength as a single mom, but all of those things are just that…” things”. Things don’t matter. Relationships and family matter.
When I look at all the beautiful times I shared with my friends and family and the joy I found in writing, it puts everything into perspective. The past year has been amazing from that perspective. I have had the love and support from my family and friends all along the way. My relationships with people who have helped me and who I have been able to help are priceless. I’ve had so much fun with friends over the year and such meaningful conversations that have brought me such amazing insight that taught me a lot about myself.
The highlight and most precious thing that happened as the year ended, was the journey across the country I took with my three kids. Words can’t begin to describe how healing this trip was for me. Every day was a new landscape and a new adventure. The long drive gave me time to think about what’s important in life and what a special relationship I have with my children and the joy that they bring me even when their driving me crazy. There was a lot of laughter and time together that would never have happened without this road trip adventure that forced us to be in close quarters for nine days straight. We have lifetime of great memories.
I realized that being angry or jealous of my ex-husband new life was nothing to envy. Would I ever give up the bond I share with my children and the deep connections I share with family and friends for a fancy new sports car and a hot young husband? Not in a million years.
I can look back at my experiences (good and bad) and be thankful for everything they have taught me. I will look to the new year and take pause when new lessons present themselves and look at the blessings and not the struggle. This year will be a difficult one in some ways. Although I am extremely proud of my daughter having the strength and perseverance to spread her wings and create a new life she has dreamed of, I will miss her terribly. She and my two boys are my world. I can’t contain the emotion I feel for how much they fill my heart with pride. That is all a mother could ask for…that is all that matters.
The close relationship I have with my baby girl makes it that much harder for me to let her go, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m so happy that she gets to experience this adventure in California and to live the life she desires. I never got to do that at her age because I was married and raising children, but I’m going to live it now. Leaving my marriage was a gift that allows me to live my life for me. This year I am letting go of everything that was holding me back. This year will be the year that I let go of the negative perception that these difficult times have been a curse looming over my life and that somehow happiness is out of reach. Happiness is already here. Happiness is the relationships that I cherish, not what’s in my damn bank account.
This year I’m rejecting the lie that I’ve been telling myself that life is hard and I’m in a bad place. Yes, losing my home is stressful and I’m not candy-coating the fact that letting go of the home I raised my children in isn’t going to be painfully sad, but I’ve realized that I have to let go of it because it’s tied to all the pain of my failed marriage. The negative energy and stress that the house has caused me needs to go. Holding on to my resentment towards my ex-husband needs to go. He’s move on and so will I.
Holding on to all that negative energy is just blocking the positive things from happening. I want to work this year on being a more positive gentler me. I want to smooth out my rough edges that have only attracted negativity. I’m not going to make this overwhelming list of resolutions that will cause me more stress and anxiety, I’m going to simply look for the lessons during this difficult time of letting go and be grateful for all my blessings. I will find three things every day that I am thankful for and set good intensions for what I want to attract. That’s it! Yes, I want to eat healthy and exercise to feel better, but I’m not going to beat myself up if I fall off the wagon like I normally do. I’m going to love myself and my life just the way it is. I hope you do the same. Happy New You. 🙂