In this first week of the year, many people anticipate beginnings, changes, and opportunities for growth. Share with us an image that evokes this spirit of change and newness — the smile of a new friend, a freshly planted garden, an empty journal waiting to be filled. Growth is very personal, and I encourage you to interpret this as literally or as broadly as you like. Happy New Year — we can’t wait to see your photos!
When writing the story of your life don’t let anyone else hold the pen. ~ Unknown ~
What story will you write in 2018. Take hole of the pen and start writing your own story – not someone else’s idea of your story. This can be a year of growth if you just pick up the pen and decide what it is you want to bring to your life this year and ever year thereafter.
Journaling has always been one of my favorite things to do whether home sitting in my chair, at my desk, first thing when waking, or while enjoying a coffee shop. My family is always very encouraging and I have been blessed with some wonderful journals over the years. On the New Year’s Eve, I review my goals from the previous year and count my blessings for all that was accomplished. If there is anything left that wasn’t accomplished it is time to rethink if this should be carried on to the next year or possibly it was something that I thought was a goal and ended up not being that important after all.
This year when I reviewed 2017, I felt very blessed with so many wonderful events:
- I witnessed two of my children get married – each wedding was very special and magical
- Spent time with my family (all four of my sisters in one place at the same time is a rare occurrence and saw one of my nieces for the first time in ten years) – blessing
- Hiked in Pennsylvania with my children, their spouses and two grandsons
- Spent quality time with my grandchildren on numerous occasions
- Traveled to California a couple of times to visit my daughter and her family
- Spent Thanksgiving week in San Diego and Santa Barbara – took a ride along the Pacific Coast.
- Traveled to New Mexico twice – one to visit my granddaughter and her boyfriend before they returned to NYS and once to visit a blogging friend. It was wonderful visiting different areas of this beautiful state and experiencing Spirit Walk with Mary
- Visited Innisfree Gardens with two of my cousins
- Went hiking and snowshoeing
- Created new jewelry
- Learned more about doTERRA essential oils and making rollerballs
- Facilitated my first essential oil rollerball class and did quite well
- Attended my first craft fair to sell rollerballs, framed photos and jewelry
- Purchased a Nespresso Machine and Vitamix – both were on my list
- Spent several weekends at Pumpkin Hollow Retreat Center volunteering and attending programs
- Facilitated bi-weekly meditations at work
- Visited new places in MA, PA and NY
- Traveled for work with my supervisor – visiting new locations along the way
- And, so many more wonderful events
Those are just some of the wonderful growth experiences from 2017. I am looking forward to what 2018 brings.
Growth is not always something we look forward to – sometimes growth comes in other ways that we may not anticipate or request. At the end of 2017 I learned that I was AFib – not something I would have set as a goal however life decided that this was going to be a learning lesson. Sometimes there are wrenches thrown into the mix just to keep us on our toes and helps us appreciate life. With medication my heart is feeling much better.
Guess my growth is learning to listen to my body and follow through with medical care. Physicians and specialists are needed for some health issues and we can still be open to integrative therapies in conjunction with the medical field. I’ve learned that acupuncture, essential oils, and Therapeutic Touch can bring balance to the body, mind and spirit when in the midst of an awakening to the reality of life. Medication, although not wanted, can save lives for certain illnesses. I am grateful for the medication that slowed my heart rate and corrected the irregular heart beat. I realized that sometimes our bodies malfunction no matter how well we think we are taking care of them. It is fine to feel shocked and disappointed for a short time if we don’t stay in that dark place for too long. Once we open ourselves to the fact that this is part of our new reality, we can move forward to make plans to live and enjoy every minute of life. We can release all that holds us back and be ready to jump right into the next creative journey. There is no time to keep toxic people, situations or environments in our lives. We need to remember that everyone has their own darkness and to be kind and understanding to all because we never really know their true story unless we take the time to listen. Be grateful for other’s good fortunes because there is always darkness with the light. Remember when you are in darkness that light is always present and ready to shine upon you once the cloud shifts.
Life is a balance of light and darkness, without one we would not be able to appreciate the other. Until our last breath is taken, we should be enjoying life, spending time with supportive/caring people, paying attention to all of our blessings, and living in a state of gratitude.
Start a gratitude journal today – you may just be surprised at how grateful you become. May 2018 be a year filled with health, wellbeing, creativity, joy, and overall abundance in every area of your life. I am grateful for your taking the time to read my blog.
Love and Light!
If you would like to view other photos for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own, please click on the link below: