I’ve been having a bit of a tidy – going through all my clothes and removing those that no longer create a spark of joy, and either throwing them away or putting in a bag for a local charity shop. It seems an appropriate time of year to be looking at what I own and weighing up – has this achieved it’s purpose? does it still create a spark of joy? Having almost finished going through my clothing, I’m planning to go through my make up and skincare, my books, CD’s and DVD’s. It seems like a good time to re-evaluate what I’m holding onto and why.
My aim for 2017 was embrace self love and self care – and I feel good about my achievements on that front. I think I have a greater sense of self acceptance and have learnt/am learning about forgiving myself and letting go of stuff I can’t change.
This quote describes my current space: an acknowledgement and acceptance of what I’m leaving behind in 2017; gratitude for the learnings along the way, gratitude for life’s gifts and an awareness of all I have to be thankful for. Along with anticipation for what 2018 has in store (regardless of the outcome); possibilities, opportunities; I have a sense of taking positive steps forward to proactively greet what’s waiting ahead.
Goodbye 2017. Thanks for what I’ve learnt.
Hello 2018 – bring it on!
Just prior to Christmas I shared about how I was struggling. I was feeling a little depressed – not really scary bad, just a bit down: weepy, fragile, vulnerable. We went to visit my husband’s family for several days and just before, and since, I’ve been working on a collage. It’s not exactly what I’m after, and the photo doesn’t represent it well, but this is what I’ve been working on.
I love the theme of gratitude and always being grateful, and I also like that I got to experiment with some techniques I haven’t used before (-attempting to make what is new look old and faded, and trying to make the paint look ‘distressed’)
My thought for today is a hope, a desire and an aim: to be always grateful.
This describes where I’m at today. I’m struggling just to keep it together. I’m struggling period – to be honest. I struggle with this time of year – with my own thoughts and feelings and expectations and disappointments. I struggle with guilt – there are so many things one can feel guilty for – and I do.
I feel vulnerable, fragile, weepy, confused, guilty, ashamed, sad, and the list goes on.
But I know that in every situation, there are things to be grateful for.
And I am.
My husband is a blessing, a friend, a rock. My dog is a constant companion. I have time to paint if I choose to; I have time to read or sleep or walk…
I choose courage. I choose to fight to keep going. I’m choosing to fight to stay on top. I’m choosing to feel the feelings, to let myself cry or not cry, to just take time to be. I’m choosing to approach this with honesty – these are my issues, this is my stuff. And while it is what it is – I can choose to accept the feelings that come along or I can determine to fight, to see this through, to be honest and authentic and real about where I’m at and how I’m feeling.
And maybe that’s enough for now.
I know this doesn’t follow my usual theme of inspiration, kindness and compassion but I feel like there’s some truth in this quote – about belief in oneself, making your own choices and being prepared to accept the consequences of those choices; making the choices you believe are right regardless of what others think or say.
I need to be reminded of this from time to time which is why I’ve included it here. There’s something great about making a decision and pursuing it and seeing it through. If I succeed, then I’ve done that on my own merits. If I fail – it was a learning curve, and no-one can say I didn’t try. I was courageous and I like that about me!
Sometimes I think we just need to do what we need to do…. for us.
I grew up believing in caring and valuing others. It has only been in the last few years that I have entertained, let alone embraced the concept of caring for myself: of valuing myself, being kind to myself, treating myself with respect.
I can’t help thinking that this is something I had been longing for at a very deep level since childhood but couldn’t articulate. And now I am free to acknowledge that I need care – and that I have a responsibility to take care of my needs. But not just my needs – my desires, my dreams, the things I value – I have a responsibility of care for those things too. And it is not onerous, it’s a joy, a priviledge to take delight in my own dreams and goals, just as I would the dreams, goals and values of someone else I care about.
Taking time for me reminds me that I too am of value and need to be loved and cherished. And I can love and cherish the little girl I carry inside in a way that perhaps she wasn’t. I can do those things for her that my family and friends were unable to do – I can listen and give her time and attention and care. I can value and honour the little girl I carry inside. I can acknowledge her, and treasure her, and love her.
And I can remember that I am she – and I too deserve the respect, and love and care, the kindness and value and acknowledgement that I offer to others.
Today is what it is.
Look beyond what’s not perfect and accept what is. Look beyond the imperfections of the day/week/month or year and appreciate the good things. I can focus on what I have to be grateful for, what might not have been but is.
Being happy is a choice.
To be happy is to look beyond the imperfections, to appreciate what is and to be grateful for the good things.
I know it’s more easily said than done. Some days are hard work and can be filled with unwanted external drama.
If today is difficult for whatever reason(s), I can still aim to be happy; to accept what is. It’s still a great thing to aim for. However, if being happy today is nothing short of a bridge too far, then I can always change my aim from being happy to accepting that today is difficult. While I will attempt to remain positive, in the end I know that simply coping with and getting though today is goal enough.
I believe that even in the face of dire straits, there can still be room for positivity, and if nothing else, for gratitude.
Wherever you are at today, I wish you peace and perspective. And, for what it’s worth, I wish you a happy day!
So utterly tired
Worn out, worn down
Worried and fatigued.
Longing for relaxation, to lie beside still waters
Yearning to take off this bag that I carry which holds the stuff of life
And put it down for a time
To rest a while
Hoping rest will replace weariness,
calm replace concern,
peace replace turbulence;
That sleep will indeed knit the unraveled sleeve of all my care(s)
And I might know true rest.
My prayer that I might wake, my soul repaired
Renewed desire to reach out and touch the fabric of the day –
a gentle touch that greets the day
with gratitude and grace
rejuvenation of joy and strength
in peace, a soul refreshed