Sunday, 6 January 2013

Looking back, not always forward can be rewarding too

The New Year is here and many people have bid farewell to 2012, with statements like 'don't let the door hit your ass on the way out'! Personally I have felt that way about most years, however this year I have decided that making time for reflection and not resolutions for a new and better me, or a new and better year is the way forward for me. I was out walking Jazz in the snowy rain this morning and just letting my mind wander, I guess this is a type of meditation for me, my body is moving and my mind is just free flying with no particular purpose except to walk the dog and get some fresh air. I started thinking about the past year and all the new things I have done or at least attempted, and it was so surprising to me that I decided I should list them. And it became a very rewarding and fulfilling activity. I think everyone who is feeling negative about the past year, should make a list of all the good things that happened, the achievements made, no matter the size or significance and not allow any of the bad or negative intrude. I believe we can surprise ourselves. So for the record in no particular order here is my list for 2012:

1. moved in with the great love of my life after 12 years of dating
2. went tidal bore rafting on the Bay of Fundy with my niece
3. went to Nova Scotia and discovered that while my family were Cap' Bretoners they came via Newfoundland, so I am actually part newfie!
4. started writing a book
5. started studying the harp
6. attended more of my grandsons hockey games than ever before
7. made the perfect creme brûlée
8. saw my last child move out of the house and make the awesome decision to go to college
9. visited my great grandad's grave, and then toured the coal mines and heard the story that would have shaped his life, a very hard life it must have been
10. went foraging for mushrooms with Wayne and experienced the beautiful, serene landscape that is unique to our part of the world
11. had my favourite Aunt and Uncle come to the lake for a wonderful visit
12. found out I was going to be a great grandmother
13. facetime with my grandson Logie!
14. hosting 21 guests in the month of July alone, just because they love us and miss us
15. hearing that my son finally was able to realize his dream of beginning the journey of plumber apprenticeship
16. seeing my daughter and her guy pass the magical year of one successful year of operating a restaurant in Toronto
17. seeing another daughter get accepted into her chosen program at university
18. watching a partner family settle into their new home through Habitat for Humanity Stratford Perth
19. proudly watching one daughter do the 'right thing' even though it was risky for her to do it
20. found out on Christmas Day I am going to be a grandmother again!
21. planted and harvested my first vegetable garden in many, many years
22. converted the attic so we can have the whole family and friends over for good times
23. Jazzy got fit from all the hiking, and we improved too
24. watched the class of 2012 graduate from the Stratford Chefs School, knowing I participated in their dreams
25. decorated my new home for Christmas, for our family to enjoy
26. participating in Maple Tree Community Housing as a board member, providing safe, affordable housing for 12 families
27. spending quality time with good friends on many different occasions
28. cooking with Wayne
29. supported a local business by purchasing a CSA
30. went whale watching
31. visited Peggy's Cove
32. watched my grandson run for a block in his squeaky shoes -so much fun
33. attended the Rocky Horror Show at the Livery
34. watched our town continue to recover from the tornado, with hundreds of tree plantings, transforming the downtown, new houses built, people regain a sense of optimism
35. smiled ALOT more

I know there are plenty of others I could add to the list, but this is a good start. I would encourage you to create your own list. And if I was going to make a resolution for the new would be to consciously or intentionally do something nice for someone every day. In fact doing it for someone you love and know and not just strangers can be more challenging. I know from my days in sales that often we treat relative strangers better then we do our own family. Make an effort to get it right this year. I plan to.