This is a big month for me.
As I mentioned in a previous post, the 3rd marked the date of my cancer diagnosis. And this week holds two important dates.
Monday, the 12th, was the 6-month anniversary of our move to Charlotte. So much has happened in that time.
I feel like it’s been a roller coaster. At first, I was excited and ready. And then once the reality set in, I felt lonely. Aspen is in Colorado. Zach is at school every day. And for the first time in about 15 years, Michael is working in an office again. I got really used to having him home all the time, if he wasn’t traveling. It was awesome. He could come to school functions that happened during school time. We could have breakfast and lunch together. He could put in a “Full Half-Day Friday” to go to the movies, shopping or out to lunch.
So there’s been a lot of adjustment.
Additionally, I didn’t have any of my Colorado friends here. I know only one person here. And while he’s an amazing friend, I can’t count on him for my entire social life. (No offense, Aaron, but I think you knew this about me when you signed up.)
Plus my job was all done from the comfort of home so I didn’t even have to leave home for that.
Luckily, that phase was short lived!
I have quit my job (with a heavy heart) so that I can pursue my German language degree. I have a weekly class right now (that I love) where I’m one of only two students! We are taught by a great teacher who was born in the Netherlands and speaks Dutch, German, English and some French. I have a new yoga studio, with lots of great teachers and students. I have a book club that I enjoy. I found some favorite places. I know where I’m going without the GPS.
It’s not really the places, it’s the people. I’m feeling connected again. I’ve met some amazing people who have popped up out of nowhere and changed my life. I’ve always felt that there are no coincidences, and that belief has been reaffirmed for me recently.
I believe it’s better to go forward than back. I had to relearn that in these past six months.
For a while, I was busy trying to create a new life in all the ways I could think of. Some of those things worked out well, some did not. And once I realized that I was doing a whole lot of trying, I decided to stop trying so hard. It’s been since then that tremendous things have happened for me.
I had to let go in order to receive. You see, if you keep holding on to the old stuff, there’s no room for the new. And that new stuff is the good stuff, the surprising stuff, the stuff you didn’t even know to ask for.
The second important date this week is Saturday, the 17th. It’s the first anniversary of the end of my cancer treatment. In all, the medical treatments lasted a year — from diagnosis to chemotherapy to surgery to radiation. This is a big milestone to call to mind as I continue to regain strength and cardiovascular fitness and balance.
The balance is key. It’s been missing in my body and in my life. So that’s what I practice both on the mat and off. Yoga practice is nothing more (and nothing less) than a big ol’ metaphor for life.
Now that my pendulum has swung far in one direction and swung back the other way, it’s finally beginning to rest in the center, with mild rocking and always coming back to center.
What am I going to do to celebrate? I’m going to be mindfully joyful. (That’s my new version of saying I’m going to party like it’s 1999). I’m not going to plan anything. Just take life as it comes. And enjoy every second with gratitude in my heart.
That’s hard to do as “The Mom,” particularly in December. I’ve been shopping and driving and planning and booking and cooking and decorating and ordering and calling and wrapping and all the “ings” you can imagine.
This morning I set the intention to stop.
I’m done with errands. I’m done with plans. I’m just going to have fun. That’s what girls wanna do, after all! I’m going to have a merry Christmas! I’m going to have a joyful holiday! I’m going to have a happy new year!
I’m going to accept invitations. I’m going to attend dinner parties. I’m going to watch my favorite Christmas movies (Love Actually, Elf and Grinch). I’m going to color. I’m going to ring in the new year. There is a lot to do this time of year, but while I am involved in those things, I will be mindful to be … happy, joyful, merry and grateful. Many of us get stressed out over time, money, commitments and we forget the important stuff — our family, our friends, our abundance. That’s where the true joy is.
Frohe Weihnachten für alle und für alle eine gute Nacht!