Finally Embracing the New Year and My One Word for 2014


Well, it’s the last day of January, so I guess it’s the last acceptable day to publish this post.  It’s good to know that my procrastination tendency didn’t fade out after college…

It was harder than usual this year for me to let go of the holiday season and move on to thoughts of a new year.  We had a funeral over Thanksgiving, photo 1a wedding right after Christmas…photo 2and a New Years spent thousands of miles away from my sweetheart.  It all felt like too much, and at the same time, not enough.  I felt cheated and disoriented for several weeks.  The holiday season is usually my absolute favorite time of year—starting with the cooler temperatures arriving (which is long-awaited each summer in Texas), all the way through Thanksgiving, our wedding anniversary and Christmas.  But things are changing.  And I’m ashamed to admit it, but I had a hard time with that.  When it comes to the holidays, I love special traditions and time for reflection.  I wait impatiently all year for the coziness and warmth of quality time with the family (and good food).  It all looked different this year, and I wasn’t ready for it.

It’s taken me awhile, but I’ve realized now, as I always do with time and prayer, that different doesn’t have to be bad.  I know I’m slow, but I get there eventually.  It’s a continual learning process.  I cannot recapture the joy of Christmases past, but I can change my perspective for future holiday seasons and find joy in new ways.  For instance, no holiday could be completely devoid of joy that included Chocolate Santa.  photo (2)And let’s think for a minute about what a blessing it is to have a family that you WANT to spend time with.  Furthermore, I look forward to a time when, Lord willing, I will be able see the magic of the holiday season through the eyes of my children.  That will be an entirely new kind of joy.

So, after some contemplation and reflection I have finally come up with my one word for 2014.  It’s GROW.  This year I will turn 30. (yikes)  It seems like a good time to focus on growing…relationships, opportunities to serve, my career, my marriage, my organizational skills, my writing, my exercise regimen, my brain, my connectedness with our new community, etc., etc.  The 30s are the time when you supposedly feel more grounded.  You’re more settled in your career/relationships/location and feel more comfortable in your own skin.  This sounds appealing to me, but when I take inventory of my life, it seems I have some growing to do.

I’ll go into some of my more specific goals later, but for now, suffice it to say I plan on challenging myself to grow this year.  I can’t wait.  🙂


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