It’s worked for me for 20 years.
But not this year.
This year I ask what happens when the New Year isn’t a marker of moving on – when it isn’t out with the old and in with the new?
I have no word, no verse, no plan in advance. I am buying huge desk calendars and 3 foot by 5 foot pads of paper to capture instead of plan.
This year, everything is vague and more open because I’m not at a new beginning, I’m in the middle.
It’s Jan. 1. By this time most New Year’s Days I’ve cleaned up, new calendar is up, I’m up with the dawn and the year is looking up. This year, I understand there is an “up” and when I stand, I’m there.
What happens to us when we are right in the middle of loss, change, and chaos and we know there’s more to come? What happens when we’re either hoping we’ll get “through” or we know it’s a “new normal” without a new beginning. Ever. What then?
I want to clarify that I specialize in middles of life. I speak and coach women and moms to have phenomenal lives and families in the midst of the unchangeables in their lives- special needs kids, young toddlers, staring at a close empty nest, moving to another country with kids, managing in-laws. I get them through middles. Very often it looks like “accept” and “exhale” – where the accept holds “what is”, and exhale expands the oxygen around their lives to create space on the inhale.
Accepting and exhaling.
This year, however, I am accepting and exhaling for my life.
I will not share details right now. I would only fumble to explain the 64 things that are unfinished. You would leave well intentioned comments explaining best advice, a book, site or group I should join – and it’s all unproductive for this season. Advice never lands. Holding hands does.
Secondly, my middle is not yours and your details equally matter. We all have middles on January 1.
Today, the New Year and I look disheveled, tattered, and tattooed with too many “hang in theres”. Maybe you’re with me here:
— We are tired. In general, we go to bed later than we want, wake up at 3:23am thinking, worrying, wondering. We accept for now, this new normal. Most mornings, we find clues for the day.
— Uber-clarity shows up on behalf of our kids. Yes is yes, no is no, and bear claws come out to protect before there is a threat.
— Every decision shifts life in epic ways. Choices don’t look so easy. Making one decision births tectonic shifts in a direction we aren’t clear we want. Awareness from our cells informs us more than logic.
— We spit out lies before we chew. Eating, drinking, smoking, shopping and watching any housewife show seems like a better deal than facing life in the land of uncertain spaces. We intuit that the “comfort” they offer is a lie. Our soul reminds us of the journey and those choices stall us.
—We smell grace-less-ness. The people who love legalistic rule -following and merciless finger-pointing land on us as rejection. We know life-giving and this isn’t it.
—Drawing lines, the only lines we know for sure, feels like a powerful move. For me, my lines are no more yelling at me. ever., I don’t have to believe what someone tells me- look for actions, start with utter acceptance (people, situations and myself) and go from there. That may seems silly, obvious, or I should-know-better. For me, it’s the magenta, periwinkle, and chartreuse crayons of this new season. I didn’t have those hues before 2013.
— Others show up as kindreds. No judgement. Lots of laughs because humor champions those without answers.
— We should “Dream Big”, and we want to, but we cannot. While we watch others and read how we should dream our lives into being, we cannot. We know we are supposed to. We are supposed to fix our thoughts on amazing things, but in this season, the space is so big, the options either so few or so abundant, the clarity of life so vivid, we just know better. We find our footing and dream the next step.
I’ll leave with that for now… dreaming our next step. Part 2 tomorrow.
And maybe Part 3… I have no clue…
Confident Middling, Vikki