Sunday, December 31, 2017

New Year's Eve 2017

"I'm keeping it simple in 2017. This last year was so busy and so stressful, that this year I don't want to set my expectations so high and then worry about living up to it all year. 2017 is going to be about me working on smaller, simpler goals and taking what life throws at me one day at time. Alex is going to be gone for half the year; I don't need a lofty ambition hanging over my head while I'm busy trying to be a great mom, a good visitor of Europe, and a functioning adult. Rather than giving myself unrealistic expectations, I'm going into the year with the mindset that if I keep my plate clean, it'll end up filling itself with unexpected rewards."

I didn't have many expectations for this past year, choosing instead to leave myself open for opportunities and growth. The few goals I did set, such as visit Rome and read more, I managed to accomplish. A few didn't manage to happen; returning to Disneyland Paris and switching to more eco-friendly alternatives have to be pushed into 2018's focus. What can I say, you win some and you lose some. 

Typically, I make a short list of all the wonderful moments from the past year to create a highlight reel of sorts, in order for me to look back on and see how blessed my life is. But 2017 was a little different. Sure, I could make that list...

-Went to Rome
-Went to Ireland
-Vacationed in Florida
-Went to Disney World
-Went to Belgium
-Survived a deployment in a different country
-Witnessed my oldest start preschool

However, the biggest and most important accomplishment wasn't tangible. In 2017 I really came into my own. I re-discovered who I am as a person. Back when I was a freshman in college, I had a firm understanding of who I was, but over the years that became muddied. I had been so busy being a wife, a mother, a military spouse that I lost my personal identity. Thank goodness I found it once again. 
I began doing things that made me happy. Reading, writing, exercising. I nourished my soul and in return I blossomed into a thriving, confident, happy woman. I discovered talents I'm good at, and I created a road map of where I want to go in the future. I now have a sense of purpose and have dreams that I want to strive to reach. 

That's huge and by far the best thing I could have asked out of 2017. 

So for 2018 I want to build on that; I made my New Year's goal a phrase: FOLLOW THROUGH AND GAIN FULFILLMENT. Meaning I will complete tasks I created this year and use my new skills extrinsically. 

- I'll complete the Disneyland Paris Half Marathon
- I'll finish my project
- Reassess my bucket list
- I'll show more gratitude towards others

Humility is something I have struggled with for a long time. I am a selfish person by nature. Where someone can walk into a store and see something they know a friend would love, my mind never makes those connections. I don't like to share, don't like to go out of my way to help someone, and don't do enough to better the world. Well, that needs to change. In 2017, I had multitudes of people come together to help me survive Alex's deployment. I ate dinners the base provided for me, allowed myself to ask for help, witnessed friend and after friend give me something very precious to them - their time. 
I can't be the type of person that takes, takes, takes and never returns. Therefore, I'm going to make a more conscious effort to be generous. Life is nothing if you can't share it with those you love, and it's high time I take a big ol' bite of Humble Pie. 

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