Christmas is over and I’m feeling all sorts of emotions over it. On one hand I’m sad that I don’t have my pretty tree up anymore. I’m sad that the anticipation and Christmas with a toddler is over. On the other hand, I love the new year, I love the new start and everything that comes with it.
This year especially we have a new start as our family grows. Not only are we welcoming a brand new baby, but we will also be welcoming my husbands first son into Canada around the same time. A short time after that my husband will start to work in the area he’s been studying for the past two years (and another 2-3 years before that he was studying English just so he could get into the program). So 2017 is going to be a big big year. I’m not huge into changes – yes I love fresh starts and new beginnings like the New Year, but these big changes and new starts that are coming are a bit over the top for me. I like routine and predictability. New borns are easy enough to deal with, beyond exhaustion and the normal newborn challenges you get to pick the routine as a parent to some degree. You get to decide how that first year will go and from that a routine is eventually formed and it’s usually within your comfort level. Add a full grown child into the mix with their own ideologies, and ways of doing things at the same time as getting used to a newborn and a little bit of anxiety creeps in. Then add a husband with a whole new routine and the unknown of where or when a job will start and my routined predictable life gets thrown out the window.
When I think of each of these situations on their own, none of them cause me any anxiety. I can break them down, rationalize and deal with the changes (in my head of course). If I put them all together into a timeline and how fast they will all happen, I get a little overwhelmed.
2016 was nothing like I had wanted or imagined. It started with a lofty goal and dream that quickly got brushed to the side due to multiple health issues. That dream is still on hold and I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever pick it up again. The health issues that the year started with are still there and not figured out, although they did start to improve slightly in the summer. Then, enter pregnancy and EVERYTHING that entails this go around and I feel like I spent the year barely surviving while trying to juggle family life and working like crazy to keep our heads above water. Of course there were a lot of good times and good memories, Ezekiel grew in every way possible and seems to get more and more amazing with each day. We are beyond elated to have been surprised with a pregnancy and cannot wait to meet this little one (well we can wait until March!). We had a few little day trips and a couple longer trips that were all fun and worth it. I discovered just how much I really love growing things and my gardening hobby grew a lot. So yes 2016 wasn’t easy, but it also wasn’t terrible.
My one little word for 2016 was INTENTIONAL. If you go back to this post you can read how I broke down that word into how I was envisioning it to work into my life. When I read through that post again the other day my initial thought was that I had completely failed to work “intentional” into my year. Yet as I reflect on 2016 I see that I was quite intentional in a few areas. My health being the first, I finally allowed myself to recognize that something was wrong and I spent the first half of the year at appointments and tests trying to figure them out. I had started to exercise again more regularly with walking. I was intentional with my health. As a mom I was very intentional with Ezekiel and continue to try to be just as intentional – this one is simple for me, it’s actually just my parenting style. I was also intentional with gardening and making sure that I was prioritizing my hobby into my life because I realized how much JOY it brought me. I was intentional with my time off of work, I cut back my working days a lot and made sure that I prioritized time off with family and I allowed myself to not feel guilty about it or anxious about it. So although my one little word didn’t get worked into my year like I had imagined it was still a year of being intentional.
When I was thinking of what my word would be this year it wasn’t hard to realize where God was guiding me. December has been spent with scares of pre-term labor and other pregnancy related complications which has landed me on modified rest. It was and has always been one of my biggest pregnancy related nightmares and here I am on week 4 of rest (with hopefully 10 more weeks to go). Ironic that the last two years have been spent on high speed just trying to survive and finally I literally have no choice but to stop. It was a rapid stop, one that almost gives you whiplash. Once I settled into resting I realized that this is exactly what 2017 needs to be. Not literally sitting and doing nothing, but making REST a priority in my life. It will come in many forms and ways and I’m not going predict or theorize how it will happen. What I will say is that I’m going to be reminding myself often that 2017 is about RESTING.
Have you made resolutions or picked a word for 2017? I’d love to hear them!