Can you believe it’s 2015? I still feel like the impending Y2K disaster (that didn’t happen) was just the other day!
I’m somewhere in the middle.
I’ve made resolutions in the past, but a few months ago I decided to forgo them and instead take time to reflect on all that has happened the past year.
Since I’ve become a mother, I feel like time flies by. There are so many moments that just seem to get lost. (What’s the saying? — “The days seem so long but the years fly by.”) So I really wanted to use the coming of a new year as a way to look back at some pivotal and important memories from 2014 rather than create new goals for the future.
If New Year’s resolutions don’t seem to work for you, or if you’re just looking for a new way to reflect on what has already come in your life, I challenge you to join me and start a New Year’s reflection journal for 2015. Write in it at least a few times a month, then in December go through the year and chronicle some really important memories. What a fun gift that could make for your children when they grow up!
Here are some of my most important moments from 2014.
January: Celebrating the Last “First” Birthday
On January 14, 2014, we celebrated the last first birthday. We have three children and after our last child was born we took the ol’ permanent measure route. So celebrating our daughter’s birthday was poignant because it was the last “first” we’d ever have. We kept it simple and sweet with just a few family members over. Simple decorations and a little cake made it a fun day. But as Hailey, our last baby, reaches each new milestone of life — walking, talking, jumping, coloring, making complete sentences, and figuring out the pieces to a puzzle — I like to remember that she’ll always be our baby. Everything feels a bit more bittersweet knowing you won’t see it again.
March: Getting Healthy and Eating Clean
In March, after a few months of going to the gym and seeing few if any results, I took on a health challenge. Specifically, a clean eating challenge. It would be a huge undertaking since clean eating meant eating only whole foods and taking out processed foods with “mysterious” ingredients that I couldn’t pronounce. But with a lot of research and dedication I was able to far exceed any expectations that I ever had for myself. Throughout the year I was able to keep up my newly learned clean eating habits with support from other clean eaters and I learned even more when I joined a 21 Day Health Habit Challenge that taught me a lot about juicing my fruits and veggies.
Today I am down 34 pounds (almost to my pre-kids weight) and I’m so proud of myself for having made a commitment to myself to get healthy and actually stick with it.
May: Coming to Terms with Cystic Fibrosis
I’m not sure why it has taken me so long to emotionally come to terms with the fact that 2 out of my 3 children have the long term chronic illness cystic fibrosis. When we first found out our daughter had CF in 2007, I prayed that somehow all the tests were wrong. When she was genetically confirmed as having the disease at the end of that year, I cried, still not fully believing it. I’d like to think that life just moved along too fast (with the birth of another child who had CF) to fully process the fact that CF would always be a part of our family. But something clicked this past year. Maybe it was the fact that our third child, a toddler in 2014, did not have the disease.
Either way, I finally accepted the fact that I was the carrier of my children’s journey. One day it would be their journey to carry, but for now they needed me to fully accept CF so I could provide any emotional support they might need in the future. This past year, for the first time ever, I did fundraising for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation during our awareness month (May) and raised $180. I shared our story here on the blog and I finally reached out for some much-needed parental support.
August: Becoming More Active at My Child’s School
My daughter’s kindergarten year, from the perspective of wanting to be more involved at the school, was kinda a bust. Having to bring along a 3-year-old and an infant was just not at all something I wanted to do. Of course I was at my daughter’s school for important events, but just not in the way I would have liked to been.
This year, I knew I really wanted to be more involved, so what better way than to just go all out and be the committee chair for a father/daughter dance. Call it “guilt volunteering” if you must, but I knew with my retail management experience I could handle it. I’ll share how it all turned out in February. But aside from that, I have been volunteering more in other ways. I come in a few times a week and read to the children during dismissal; I helped with teacher lunch (so the teachers can actually get a real lunch break); and I recently chaperoned on the school field trip. I’d say I’m making progress!
October: Positive Mantras and Affirmations
Joining the 21 Day Appreciation Challenge for Living Radiantly was hands down one of the best decisions I have ever made! This Challenge was about focusing our minds on appreciation and gratitude, which in turn fuel your mind with such positivity and joy. I started to really notice and meditate on all of the wonderful and affirmative aspects of my life rather than allowing a negative mindset to rule my day.
Just the other morning, I was driving back from dropping the kids off at school, thinking about all of the things I needed to get done that day and how I wouldn’t have enough time. I started feeling myself become anxious and agitated, until I remembered that I don’t have to think these thoughts. So instead I looked out at the beautiful blue morning sky with the sun coming up and a few birds heading south, and I thought, “What a beautiful day. The day is full of wonderful and amazing possibilities.” I felt so much better.
If you’d like to add positive affirmations to your year, check out Pinch me Living on YouTube, one of my favorite resources.
Do you like to reflect on the previous year at the start of the new one? Share your experience in the comments.