I asked myself: What was my biggest eye-opening experience this year, one that made a significant change in my life and/or those of others?
For me, that eye opener was what is now a five-month bout with dizziness, neck and shoulder pain. They are all much better now but still remain. But that occurrence helped me to better understand the self-imposed stresses I put on myself.
Like many others who don’t want to be a burden or a ‘negative Nancy’ on others, I backed away from people, places and things to focus on how to deal with those stresses. Essentially, I became more of a hermit than my normally introverted personality already was.
I now realize my challenges and self-created isolation actually opened my eyes and my heart to what is really important – relationships. I realize just being able to interact with others — whether with simple chit-chat, to listen, to learn another perspective or to vent, laugh or cry — IS the core and heart of life. Like a bud that needs water, food and sunshine, I need to do the same with my relationships. I allowed the negatives in my life to overwhelm me and replace what I know is good, beautiful and loving.
To all my family, friends and acquaintances, I need to say I’m sorry. Even though others may think apologizing is a sign of weakness, I believe a heart-felt
apology allows one to acknowledge, accept and atone for those errors, errors of judgment, perception, action or inaction. To me, that’s a sign of strength and growth. Saying I’m sorry allows me to let the wounds of the pain, hurt, guilt, ambivalence, misunderstandings, misperceptions and seclusion go.
Like lancing a water-filled blister, I’m letting go of all that kept me hurting and allowing the healing to begin. For me, that healing begins with nurturing the relationships and activities I put on hold for much too long this year.
So, goodbye 2017.
I know rebuilding and nurturing the relationships and activities I’ve neglected will take ongoing effort, focus and commitment, but I’m sure that will allow my sharing with everyone I encounter the blossoms of beauty, love and peace I’ve kept bottled up this year.
Anyone for a girls’ night (or day) out Sat., Jan. 13, 2018 — a walk or ski on the canal behind my house?