In a few hours, we set our sights on new beginnings for the new year. WHEW; truly remarkable in light of our collective experiences during 2020. There is little to say as we continue to synthesize it all while looking forward. After all, the history of each of us has always been in our stories, and 2020 definitely gave us unique ways of crafting and sharing our stories. Missing traditional celebrations or beautiful moments with family and friends, not being able to hug and comfort each other in person in times of grief or triumph…these created relentless emotions and something I trust none of us will take for granted ever again. Personally, I’m a hugger and my inability to physically connect with others through a hug is devastating; ZOOM and FaceTime just don’t do it, y’all (and y’all better get ready for us huggers when it’s safe)! As my momma would remind me, “no gift, especially a hug, is too small or simple to give or receive when wrapped in thoughtfulness and tied in love.”
The Scottish phrase “auld lang syne” literally means “old long since” or for “old time’s sake.” After MUCH reflection during 2020, this new year in particular offers sacred opportunities to take the wisdom and experiences of this past year “for old time’s sake” forward as we build on its foundational lessons for a stronger future. The changes, growth, triumphs, missteps, JOYs, and sorrows of our experiences bring a fresh and clearer perspective to forgive, to do better, to do more, to give more, and to love more.
So…I offer this hopeful challenge to us all in 2021 to: BE in the moment, breathe deep and fortifying breaths, encourage one another, forgive with grace, keep promises, forgo grudges, apologize, share softer answers, work to understanding, walk more, seek adventure, smile at strangers through your mask with your shining eyes, examine personal demands (this is me preaching to me), think first of others, be gentle and kind, laugh more, help carry burdens, cherish inner dreams, learn a new skill, be bendable but not breakable, observe the beauty and wonder of the world, ask questions, explore options, express thanks, welcome others, and speak your love over and over and over and over again and again and again and again! The spiritual gift of actively living this challenge with grace and gratitude fills my soul with hope as time marches onward; and hope, my friends, constantly and gratefully prevails in all our daily humanness.
This is beautiful, Beth. This is spot on not just for my new year, but for this new chapter called “Retirement”. It’s only been a week, but trying to find my new purpose. I’m very excited to see what that is, but I’m sure as you said so eloquently said above, joy will come from putting others first and stretching myself to try new things (and traveling!) ❤️
Wish you were here to help guide me through this journey. 🥰
Take care friend. Love your thoughts on paper.
Beautiful Jennie, Jennie, Jennie… Thank you for the kind words and encouragement. While I may not be in town, I’m always with you on the journey, friend. Your new purpose will find you as you continue to bring JOY in putting others before yourself (this will not change because this is who you are). Take time to ponder, to rest, to breathe, and to listen. When you least expect it, purpose will present and prevail. Come east (when it’s safe) anytime. We can walk in the woods and laugh… Take care yourself as you take care of others…love you, b