Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Welcome 2014!


 
When you've seen beyond yourself, then you may find, peace of mind is waiting there.
George Harrison

As you kind folks are aware, 2013 was probably the greatest year of profound change for me since the year I gave birth to my first child.

In my mind, 2013 was the year I said yes to everything, casting aside my need to seem in control, my need to seem "cool", my need for people to think well of me.  It was horrible at first, but then it got better and better.  Like an ill-used muscle, as I became increasingly open to the possibilities of the world without trying to control the outcome, I found myself becoming stronger and changing in ways that I could never imagine.


 
When I began to wrestle down my own ego, my need to be "special" or "smart" or "better", I felt as if I was shedding old skins that had toughened me to the beauty that exists in every encounter. 

Mostly, what I learned in 2013 was to love myself again.  And not because I had a certain job or a certain life, or had certain things, but because we are all, fundamentally, lovable.  And once I could love myself and forgive myself for being human and frail, I found myself judging less and understanding more.  And while that may sound airy-fairy, it is the truth as I know it. 

A year ago, I would have written that article that was recently published mostly for ego reasons, "look at me aren't I wonderful?" reasons or "please validate me" reasons. 

When I submitted the article for consideration this past Autumn, I did so because I thought maybe someone else felt like I did.  Over the past year, what was helped me time and again was when I read of others having the same worries, concerns, confusion that I was having.  If even one person gleaned something useful from my experience then it was worth sharing.

The most moving experience I've had over the past few days are private emails from people telling me that they felt "soul sick" and unhappy, too, and thanking me for naming it so now they could name it and begin a new way of life, whatever that new way of life will be for them. 

Writing from the heart, to entertain or to share, has made all the difference to me.  I believe I will have children's books published not because I am more special or luckier or more talented than anyone else, but because I am willing to work hard and I want to make a difference to a child in my own goofy way. 

Once I began to get out of my own way in 2013, things seemed easier and began to work out in ways that I have no control or understanding of nor do I care to have that control or understanding.

So this year, my only resolution is to continue the inner spadework that is necessary to be the best and kindest person I can be.  Each of us has the ability to touch and support others through our thoughts, words and deeds.  I would like mine to be the best they can be!

I heard an interview with Nelson Mandela last month when he talked about his 27 years in captivity as a gift, as it enabled him to change his perspective on the world and therefore change himself.  He noted that the hardest work a person can do is to change themselves.  Amen to that!

I have high hopes for the year; 14 is my number, so I am excited to see how the year unfolds.  And this morning we woke up to a New Moon, an auspicious way to begin a new year.

source
 
I have high hopes for you all as well, and wish most of all that collectively, we all find the peace of mind we need to support us in this ever more complex world.

I share again the picture my son drew for me many years ago when I was having a particularly challenging day at work:




We are the heroes of our lives.  Let's write a 2014 story that is epic-worthy!  Happy New Year and Stay Safe out there!

36 comments:

  1. Fabulous! What a great post for a New Year, 'soul sick' is a great term, I think we've all felt it at some time. 'Inner spadework' is a great phrase too - off to find my shovel.

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  2. Hi Tabs! I think you are right. I like spadework as it reminds me of my garden! I was impressed by your latin this morning - I may need to learn latin in 2014!

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  3. For a minute there I was thinking, Latin, what Latin? I forgot the origins of that phrase!
    We are both sitting feeling flat and downing the dumps - the New year blues have hit already.

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    1. I wish I could whisk you here! Am about to watch Mary Poppins with kids and then make rock Cornish game hens!

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    2. Oh you show off with your fancy modern television set!

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  4. Great post!! So motivating and inspiring!! I agree with Tabitha, "soul sick" is an excellent term and the perfect description for how I felt for many years. Here's to a happy and successful 2014!

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    1. Louise - love that we are on the same journey!

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  5. Wendy, this is perfection and I am permanently bookmarking your wise words. See, here's that musical eloquence I was pointing you to ya, girlfriend. Looking forward to getting to know you here and via email in 2014 -- we'll share writer's notes, shall we? MWAH! --Kathy

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    1. Absolutely Kathy! And go listen to Rob Thomas below thanks to Anon - wonderful stuff!

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  6. Oh, so it was you who named it. Here I thought you were referring to the song Soul Sick by Rob Thomas from 2010.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AzH5Z2D0YLo

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    1. Hi Anon! I'm not familiar with that song! thanks for sharing is wonderful! Soul sick must be an ancient religious term I guess! I just love Rob Thomas!

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  7. Love that party pic of you Wendy - classic! It's great that you were able to walk away from an unfulfilling career to find true happiness. I'm sure your family and friends also appreciate having more of your time and a happier you!

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    1. I feel like that every New Years Day!!! Thanks for the kind words! I think that careers run their course - I did like it at one point, but less so later...

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  8. You party animal! LOL

    Hope you have a happy, healthy and successful 2014, Wendy!

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    1. Thanks Rose! You are right - I can say that the 51st birthday is going to be MUCH quieter than the 50th was...

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  9. haha I love that party photo! Congrats on the article Wendy, you are so right about many people being soul-sick. I think 2013 was a "seeding and planting" year for many -- some years lay the foundation for other years when things 'happen' throughout. Wishing you the best this year, happy writing and I hope the weather warms up a bit come birthday time!

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    1. Thanks! I agree - some years are the years for planting, some are the years for sowing..

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  10. Happy New Year to you. And yes, let's all just be. Just be. Whatever that be is for us. :) I love the "be" you are being, btw.

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    1. Thanks Dina! I like your being pretty well, too!

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  11. Great post Wendy. I have seen your transformation up close and am in awe of what you have done to bring out the real you in what seems a short time, even though it may not have seemed a short time to you. You burst forth in all of your glory!!! All the best to you and your family as you continue to do these things for yourself and with others. I am looking forward to our many chats in 2014.

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    1. Thanks Mar! Happy New Year to you too! I loved the post on the snowshoeing! I must get mine out, though I confess I am not a -28 outdoor exercise kind of gal! However, I am going to hit the walking track today!

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    2. There is no -28 snowshoeing in my world either but maybe we can do some afternoons when the temp rises and the sun shines a bit.

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    3. I see March in our future!!

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  12. I love that picture of you, Wendy, it always brings a smile and it was a wonderful way to greet 2014!

    A very belated congrats on you being published! I can't wait to read it, it will be a reward when I get to a certain milestone for the household project I've been entrenched these two weeks.

    I didn't realize it was a new moon, very auspicious indeed, and 14 is also a favorite number (it was my roll call number in gym for years, lol). As my MIL said, it's 7+7 so a doubly lucky year. Have an epic one, Wendy, I look forward to further fabulousness!

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    1. Thanks TR - can't wait to hear about the household project! I have a busy day ahead - taking down Christmas, cleaning and then walking - we had to take a car in, so am stuck here, which is not a bad thing! Since my birthday is the 14th I have always been stereotypically drawn to the number!

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  13. Thank you for this post - especially on the first day of the year as we all start a new chapter. :)

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    1. Thanks Laura! I was so good yesterday - did not look at any of the sale sites! ;-)

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  14. Wendy, I can't find your email. I wanted to share this poem a young girl wrote & performs about shrinking as women.

    Congratulations on your article. Some people never, ever step out. I'm so proud of you!

    Happy New Year!
    ((hugs))

    Gigi

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    1. Love this Gigi - she is amazing and may be my new heroine! I am at sydforry@hotmail.com.

      Happy New Year to you and yours!

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  15. I read somewhere else on a NYD greeting on how women of a certain age (my age) don't dream anymore as if it's a virtue or a destination for enlightened souls. You are a delightful counterpoint.

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    1. wow - thanks GSL! I am firmly convinced that having dreams and hopes is what keeps us alive and connected with other generations. One of my best friends is 88 (she inherited me from my mother - I claim her as mine now since my mom died) and she is still so engaged and interested in everything around her, which I think fuels her and keeps her going and which I know makes her as vital and interesting as folks I know in their 20s. It is interesting isn't it? I have gotten quite a few emails from people who want to dream again and I sure hope they do!

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  16. Happy 2014! I Love that picture your son drew! It's amazing!
    Thank you for your thoughtful, funny and inspirational posts! I look forward to learning from you and with you:)

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    1. Thanks A, though to be truly truly truthful, I learn more from folks here. I feel like I was very myopic in my old life!

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  17. Hey, you in the sparkly dress with the big smile, 2014 is going to be a good year, I've got that feeling! (I'm old and wise - I've got twenty years on you.!)

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    1. I may have to add your garden to my bucket list of English gardens to visit - do you charge much? ;-)

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  18. What a wonderful post, so insightful. Here's to a wonderful 2014.

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Kindness is a virtue...