Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014: the year I would like to leave behind, but can't.

2014 was a sucky year. I feel like I didn't reach any of my goals. Little went the way I wanted and the things I worked really hard at didn't produce much fruit...

There were some great times! Matthew received the priesthood! We spent Easter with Great Grandma B! Samuel got baptized! We had lots of family visit! Samantha and her family visited us for Thanksgiving! Those were some fun times!

It also ended with a series of vertigo days, existential questioning and topped off with the full fledged flu right before Christmas.

But amid all the hard, something happened.
I was comforted.
I was lifted up.
I was made to see the good.
The miracles of everyday.

This is why I can't leave 2014 behind.

I didn't lose the weight I wanted to lose, but I did get in the best physical shape of my life. Then all came crumbling with injuries and illness. But I learned that I needed to not only think of my physical well-being but also my emotional and spiritual one. I learned to realign priorities and decided what was the most important to me. When my body failed, I felt like I was a failure. Not being able to get off your couch, or stand up without your world swirling can bring some dark times. I never thought I would question life again the way I did when I was a teenager, but I did this year. It was a dark couple of weeks filled with "what ifs". What if this is how I have to live for the rest of my life? What if I can never take care of my family the way I am used to. What if  I can't be the wife I used to be? What if I can't be the mom I used to be? What if, what if, what if... But then I watched a video of Stephanie Nielson (Nie Nie). "I am not my body" she said. That is when I realized that for too long I had neglected the other sides of me. Then came the "What is MY purpose?", "Why am I here?"...  I can't say that I have full answers to any of these questions, but I do know where to start: from the beginning. Praying with more intent and more regularity, studying God's words the same way. Being there for my kids and husband, not just in body but also in spirit. Physically, I decided I can live with Gray hair, but I can't live with illness and being fat. So the end of 2014 is bringing with it about 3 inches of natural hair regrowth (about 1/2 of which is gray) and a new nutrition challenge for the first 6 full weeks of the year. I am going nutritarian for 6 weeks. Then I will adjust or continue. That will be 6 weeks of G-Bombs (Greens, Beans, Onions, mushrooms, berries and seeds), no dairy, NO CHEESE (the hardest for me!), no meat, no sugar. What I realized this year is that counting calories and macros didn't work for me. I did lean out, but I also became obsessive about the numbers. That is bad. I am starting my fitness goals from scratch too. Vertigo doesn't go well with exercising and neither does the flu. Every time I started exercising again these past few months, something would happen within a week to sideline me. Another reminder to find the right balance...

I didn't reach my financial goals. In fact, last summer, I had some harsh words for God. Why couldn't he just bless me (and my family) with those few simple things. I was angry for a few days, then I cried for a few more. Once I was humble enough, I heard His words. He fulfills all of His promises in His time. Something did come from that. I started to see the little everyday blessings as miracles. All of them became reminders of His love and that He does fulfill His promises. A friend moving cross country and not wanting to take her freezer meat, a credit on the water bill for having paid on time the first year in our house, winning this expensive video game to go towards Christmas, and the list goes on... I learned that not getting the blessing I wanted didn't mean I wasn't blessed. I realized that my Heavenly Father blesses me everyday in numerous ways. I just need to open my eyes and see.

I lost friends. Well not really, but some of my friendships changed and some became long distance. Some days, most days, I think of my friend Bradi in Pennsylvania. I do miss having her close by. I miss her no nonsense approach to life. I miss seeing her. But she is still my friend. If there is one thing I have learned from moving to far places a few times, it is that friendships can also be eternal. What would heaven be without family and friends!?! Some friends I was close to became not so close. Sometimes, most times, that's hard. But then you realize that it's not that you aren't friends anymore, it's just that life is so busy that it distances you. As long as you work on the friendship and keep it in your heart, you are still friends.

To sum it up: I learned that it's the little things that matter.

May 2015 bring balance to my life.

Wishing you and yours the best for the new year!