Learning that if I am to be able to give back at all, I have to take time for myself. It used to feel selfish, but now I have realized that it's simply an act of self-love. Do the yoga (thank you for your class and your voice today Michele Medeiros) and savor the cup of great coffee (thank you Open Mikes) and take care of yourself, dammit. You're all you've got.
I'm thankful for trees and for hugs, for light and love and life of all kinds. I'm thankful for strong legs to run and strong roots to rise. I'm thankful for a husband who supports me in everything I do. I'm thankful for parents who raised me with so much compassion and empathy, who raised me to appreciate Mother Earth and all of her creatures and to take care of it and all of them as best I can. I'm thankful for siblings who love like I do. I'm thankful for friends. If you can read this, I am thankful for you. I am thankful for freedom and for life. I can't wait to start new traditions this year and every year, to do my part to make our world a little bit better, to shine my little light as best and as bright as I can.
I have always been what I jokingly refer to as a "control enthusiast". Maybe not quite a freak about control, but probably more serious an issue than my "enthusiasm" jokes would let you believe. Traumas at a young age led to eating disorders, attachment, abandonment, and trust issues. None of that is special or unique to me. It is all textbook, yet that textbook can contain a world of pain inside its pages.
This photo is me face down on the floor, announcing to myself and everyone else that 2017 will be the year I surrender. I will surrender my control, my need for control, and the issues that made me desperately believe I needed the control in the first place. Life is a series of obstacles, ups and downs, traumas and miracles, love and loss. It will happen with me or without me, and with my consent or without it. I do not need to give life permission to happen, but I need to give myself permission to allow that life to happen. No expectations, no need to control or change outcomes. I am a survivor, not a victim. A humble witness. I surrender.
I've chosen my word of the year for 2017: practice. It is not the word I originally wanted to choose. It came to me as I was on my knees, face to the floor, eyes closed, trying to calm my heart and dry a tear during a moving yoga class.
Every day when I wake up, I have the chance to start again, not just on the new year. I can practice being the best version of myself every time I wake up.
Every time I meet a friend or family member, any person, any animal, I can practice love and gratitude.
Every time I look in a mirror, I can practice acceptance and learn to love myself. Every time I step onto my yoga mat, I have the chance to start something fresh and new, a new practice.
Every time I feel pain, I can practice being honest and vulnerable.
Every time I read the news, I can practice compassion.
Every time I wash clothes, I can practice folding them instead of ignoring them. Or I can practice giving things away.
Every time I listen to a song, I can practice singing. I can practice art, music, speaking, listening, friendship, trust, yoga, running, breathing, kindness, empathy, humility, appreciation, love.
Life is a practice, not a performance. We never have to be perfect, we just have to show up. Live on, practice on. ❤️
I am all about going minimalist this year, so I am giving stuff away and selling the rest. If you haven't signed up for poshmark yet, you can get $5 to spend when you sign up with this link. I am listing a bunch of my stuff. I have them all set up to accept offers, too.. I just want it gone!! (The code to use for free money is GCGBO)