Right now, I’m just sitting outside, waiting to go to a Christmas Eve carols service, enjoying the beautiful warm sunshine and nice breeze.
One of my friends and I have a joke that if something is not quite up to scratch- not great… just isn’t everything one would like it to be- we say something like.
“Well. That was certainly a film.”
Like, it did what it said it would do but it wasn’t any good at it.
Last year, that was basically my motto for the year.
2015 was a year.
Let’s move on.
And move on I did! While 2016 bought its fair share of heart ache, break and yearning, it was also a vastly more positive year for me than its predecessor.
2015 was filled with a cloying sense of inadequacy, out of placeness, desperation to please and live up to expectations and a deep set exhaustion that no amount of rest days or sleep ins could fix.
I was working myself to the bone, got down to a dangerously thin size (for me) and was constantly thinking of how I could gain more control of my life.
2016 was my year of letting go and letting God.
I knew something had to give, and as ever, it had to be me.
I decided to go part time, something which I am eternally grateful to my school for making possible, allowing me more space for pleasure, rest and recreation.
While I was still working every day, I had a bit more flexibility which freed me up to do other things and ensure that I was looking after myself.
I took on new challenges of allowing myself to workout in different ways. I gave myself the mental health task of “moving everyday” but this didn’t have to be a structured workout. It could be a walk, ride, yoga flow, 10 minute fitness blender blast or even a mobility or flexibility session. It was all about moving holistically in a way that felt right on that day.
It worked exceptionally well and I’ve lost so much of the guilt that I harboured on rest days in the past. My workouts have become more varied and have included xfitness classes, reformer pilates and even a circus class!
I realised the importance of investing in people who would invest in me and while it has hurt to come to terms with the fact that some people who I once considered best friends no longer place value on our friendship, I know that I could have done nothing more. It’s also been incredibly refreshing to catch up will old friends and find out that even with months of absence, nothing has changed and we simply fall into comfortable, deep chats and bouts of pleasurable silence where we just sit in each others presence and that’s enough and ok.
This year has seen my grow closer to my God and intentionally seek to know Him better. I’ve been blessed with an amazing church community and fabulous group of people to ask questions of and answer questions from who keep me accountable and honest. God has given me wake up calls, led me realise my failings in different areas and also comforted me in my despair. How blessed I am to have Him as my Father and for Him to send me His Son.
And so, at the end of this year, I realise that I’ve finished strong. I’ve pushed through to the very end and have come out on top. I’m a much more well rounded, secure person than I was 12 months ago despite the fact that I’m in a much less financially secure place. I’m happier. I’m healthier (even with a couple of extra kilos on my bones). I’m closer to my friends, family and Father.
And the year ends, I’m looking forward to celebrating the year that’s been and looking ahead to what 2017 will bring.
I’m going to write 2 lists: one which details the highlights of 2016 and an intentions list for 2017- not resolutions necessarily, but things I want to see shift (or continue!) in my life.
I hope that you are able to come to a place of happiness and joy in your life this Christmas season as you reflect on what has led you to this point- even if that’s just happiness that this year is over or that you get to eat fruit mince pies.
And let’s face it, that’s reason enough to celebrate!