Reflection and Resolution
I used to be one of those people who thought New Year resolutions a waste of time but studies have shown that almost 50% of people who set resolutions are still making positive changes six months down the track. There’s hope for me yet!
It seems appropriate before setting goals for the New Year to look back on the old year and see how I did with the goals I set twelve months ago. Did I make it to the six month mark? Do I need to be more realistic? Or do I just need to be more motivated/determined/persistent?
Faith. It seems that what I thought I needed to focus on this past year is different to what God wanted me to focus on. I had identified what I thought were the obvious lacks in my faith but God showed me there were things I hadn’t even dreamed about that I needed to learn. Some I had already learnt in the past but this time God took me to a deeper level. So what did I learn? I learnt that God’s grace is sufficient; I learnt that He is faithful and will take care of me; I learnt that His ways are not my ways; I learnt that He is my refuge and strength; I learnt to depend on Him more fully; I learnt that He will let me walk through the fire but will not allow me to be burnt; I learnt that He has called me by name and I am precious in His sight; and I learnt to trust Him more even when circumstances and feelings gave me what I thought good reason to doubt.
So what are my goals for 2011? I’m almost too scared to set goals in this area but perhaps I could set this one (or is it two?): to have a teachable and willing spirit.
Family. Our family made the adjustment to a smaller household and welcomed a new DIL into the family. We celebrated at the news that our family will expand by two in the coming year. We enjoyed times together and several celebrations. I saw my sons step up into their father’s shoes when he was away – or, as with Son#5, when we were away from home – and I was proud of them (perhaps we didn’t do so badly at parenting after all).
This year I want to spend more time with my family and doing for my family and of course welcome these two new beautiful grandbabies into our family. Somehow I don’t think that last one is going to be too hard!
Pastimes. I finished the quilt for Son#2 and his new bride and haven’t looked at another patchwork project since then (despite a few unfinished quilts on the go). I learnt to knit socks and became quite addicted. I managed to move on from the plateau I had hit with my flute and can now play the second octave - finally!
Goals? To finish a cardigan that I’m knitting for the grandbaby due this month (it’s so cute!); to knit more socks; to finish my cross stitch of the church DH and I were married in; to start collecting fabrics for another quilt; to practice the flute (which I haven’t touched since before Christmas); to overcome my nervousness about playing the flute in public and join one of the music groups at church for their practice times (even if I'm not ready to play in church yet); and maybe, just maybe, finish off an unfinished quilt or two.
Writing. I finished my third novel but learnt that my publisher wasn’t accepting fiction MS until June 2011. How disappointing that was. I found another publisher who showed some interest and made contact with an editor with whom I hope soon to begin working.
In 2011 I need to make more of an effort to make time for writing especially over these holidays. I want to work on at least one other novel. I want to edit MS#2 and MS#3. As for this blog which has been an opportunity to write, I’m not yet sure whether to keep it going or not. It seems to be a form of narcissism and hardly the source of edifying others in the Body of Christ that I hoped it might become.
Feminine Beauty. I didn’t lose weight. In fact, I put it on. I compared myself far too often to other women – and came up wanting. I doubt I slept more, laughed more or loved more. In fact, my inner well being was seriously threatened by the struggle I had with depression. But I think I grew in strength and courage – as hard as that was at times. I learned to look at others and see that they were hurting too. I realised that I’m not alone – regardless of how it feels at times.
Weight loss will not be a part of my resolutions for this new year even though I would love to be slim again. Instead, I will work on becoming healthier – whatever that looks like for me.
With only 4”/10cm to go until I reach classic length, I’m going to be working toward that end, doing everything I can to baby my ends and keep them healthy. I don’t know if I’ll stay there but for once in my life I’d like to know what it’s like to have hair brushing the top of my thighs. I’ve long admired that length on other women – now I’d like to see if I can attain it for myself.
Perhaps I will learn that there is more to life than a dress size and that my worth isn't dependent on the numbers on a scale. Perhaps too I will smile more since I’ve often been told that it’s my best feature and why let something good go to waste?
So overall, it looks as if I accomplished little and failed at much. But sometimes life is like that. What will 2011 bring?