Monday, December 30, 2019


What happened? Where did the time go? Should I even be asking these questions, which are basically pointless?

I've had a lot of days in a row in which I woke up, started doing things, and didn't stop doing things until I laid down to go to sleep. Sometimes it's been hard to shut my brain off, and I just accept that and do a little reading or whatever might help me slide from doing doing doing doing into relaxing and letting go. At times ten minutes of reading will do the trick, but then there are nights that it takes an hour or more. In those instances I feel that I just need to finish thinking the thoughts that got interrupted during the day, and I let it happen.

I went through a small crisis of - well, I'm not really sure - at the beginning of December. It just felt like my optimism had bottomed out. I could see clearly that some things in my life were improving and moving forward, but there was a weight that had settled on me that felt like there was too much which remained unresolved. For the end of the year that I had pegged optimism as one of my guide words, this was a sorry state of affairs. I feared I would end the year in pessimism instead. And then I felt a gentle nudge, a small reminder that perhaps I had felt this feeling before? And that it did not mean certain doom? The realization was slow to come, but I got there somehow. This is the feeling of waiting, of expectation, of - dare I say it? - hope. Not a shallow hope that sings sweetly, but a deep knowing that there is something else afoot, and that my work is not to sink into this feeling but to wait through it.

After all this time, I am still not very good at waiting. I've had lots of practice. I've seen patience pay off. Yet it remains a challenge for me. I want to move steadily forward, with some degree of predictability involved. But it is not so most of the time. I know what I am meant to do in the now. I know the small ways I am to do the work of waiting. So as this year comes to a close and the next makes its way around the corner, I find I am prepared for what is ahead, though I don't know exactly what that might be or how long it will take to get there.

I wasn't sure if I would choose words again this year, but it turns out that some have emerged which will be useful to me. Once again, permanence is at the top of the list. There are things we need to do to secure things for our children's future, so that the choices we wish to be available for them will be theirs. Second on the list is perseverance. None of these things we want are going to come in an instant, or at least I don't think they will. I will need to continue to focus my efforts and see things through, to take the long view when short term gain seems more appealing. And for both of these other tasks I need patience. So now I have a third word. Yes, that's right, the woman who once scorned the "word of the year" thing now has three. I know. Oh well.