I normally love the holidays. I’m one of the first to get up my Christmas tree, I’m usually planning every family event I can get my hands on, and gleefully wrapping presents each night surrounded by either Christmas movies or music.
This year was different for me.
This year…. well, it hurt.
It’s been a tragic year for many and my family did not escape unscathed. Earlier this year, my beautiful aunt Joyce made the decision that she couldn’t live with her demons any longer and took her own life. I found out on social media which to this day leaves a jagged feeling in my heart every time I think about it.
It took a while for me to recover from the news. I cried a lot. I still cry because I miss her. My aunt left a very lasting impression on my younger years, and to this day as I’m writing this, I find it so hard to wrap my head around how the strong woman I know, just gave up.
Just when I thought I had recovered and didn’t spend my time pondering “what if’s” all day, we were hit with the news that my grandma was losing her battle with cancer. It was a long uphill battle, and my grandma is a strong, strong woman… but the cancer was stronger, it withered my beautiful grandma from a spitfire of laughs to barely recognizable. My mom spent 6 weeks by her bed side waiting for the inevitable, and each day my heart broke a little bit more.
Just a few days before Christmas, we also found out that my Grandpa has the same form of aggressive cancer and likely won’t make it until next Christmas. Instead of focusing on joy around the holidays, we tried to comprehend why this was happening to us all at once.
To be completely honest, I didn’t cope very well. I checked out. I put my feelings, my inspiration and my passion into a little box on my imaginary shelf and tried to just get through.
I realize as we get older, time doesn’t stop for those in earlier generations. I know eventually we have to say goodbye, but sometimes I close my eyes and wish for just one more phone call, one more letter, one more chance.
These tragic events really brought this year into perspective for me as I sat on New Years Eve wondering what my “resolution” should be, most people never keep them and I’m guilty of not keeping all of them myself. This year I’ve decided to change it up.
This year, I won’t have a resolution. I have a word. One simple word that I will think of and reflect on daily. My word is;
Seems simple enough, right?
For me, present reminds me that I need come back to center and focus on what is important to me.
Being present in my own life, not allowing distractions to pull me from my goals.
Present reminds me that I need to be present with my child, when she tugs at my arm to play I need to stop what I am doing and focus on her. She won’t want to play with us forever.
Present reminds me that my friends and my family are valuable, and may not be there “tomorrow”. Relationships are hard work, I’ve definitely realized that I need to put some more work in! I have some amazing people in my life who deserve my utmost attention.
Present clears my calendar on days that I need to breathe, to have a few moments to myself.
Present reminds me that things will always be there, but those fleeting moments won’t be.
I want to be present in today.
Did you make a resolution this year? I’d love to hear what is in store for 2015 for you!