Hello January 1st.
I think it’s important before I embark on our new adventure I take a pause and look at what all this last year has brought. I probably should have taken the time to do this before 2021 officially began but hey were still early in the new year game right?
While I’ve been recapping my life at the end of every year on this blog I actually did my first Life Audit last year for 2019 and it definitely helped me to see things in a little different perspective. I hope that you’re able to carve out some time to reflect on your life this past year and all the good (and sometimes crazy hard) things it did bring.
So what is this life audit?
This is basically where you have 8 categories that you rate (1 being the absolute worst and 10 being peachy) and ponder over the areas and you then ask yourself 2 life questions:
- Marriage / Relationships (or friendships)
- Personal Growth
The two questions are:
1. What good things happened this year?
(What grew well? What are you grateful for?)
2. What challenges happened this year?
(What didn’t help you cultivate what matters this year?
I honestly found a moment of contentment this year that was beautiful while it lasted and I’m working on getting it back. I definitely learned how to move at a pace I considered slow. I had to re-define (and still am) what I considered a “workout” was. For so many years it meant at least an hour of intense HIIT style workouts with heavy weights and heavy cardio. I’ve learned to love more yoga, body weight exercises, and shorter bursts of movement – I also love walking and listening to podcasts/audio books.
I am also working really hard on my mental heath in relation to myself and my weight. For over half my life I’ve really kind of hated my body, I would beat myself up over food choices and then think I was never going to be what I “wanted” to be. I’m learning that all bodies really are created differently and we should all be striving for health – not vanity. I want to put food t hat will fuel me and restore me and not have the guilt when I eat a treat. I want to move my body to get stronger, more agile, and able to do what I want to do. If that means in doing those things I loose some weight, great, if not I need to find peace with that.
Anyone else feel like this year was just a slaughter house on friendships? It was so dang tough with COVID to go from spending time with others (or at least having the option) to all of a sudden having to isolate away from friends/family. I feel that I’ve done my best to reach out to others and to try to continue friendships through this season, but there is a hardship there. It’s one that isn’t because of one person or another, it’s just something that was thrusted upon us and with life restrictions we are kind of left in this waiting area of “I’ll see you when I can” and that can be tough on any friendship no matter where it’s at. I still am thankful for everyone and working towards doing what I can to stay connected.
We are finally back together. After 14 months of forced time apart in 2019 (deployment, living on different coasts, etc) Eddie came home in March 2020 and we quickly went from spending no time together to all the time together. It’s been an adjustment, but it’s also been amazing. It was a very weird season in the beginning, there is always an adjustment period of re-introduction & readjustment after a deployment but through quarantine on top of it and it can make you feel all sorts of ways. Eddie and I definitely have areas we can and need to improve in (spiritually, intentional date time, etc) but we’ve also had some incredible hear-to-heart time this year. We’ve had adventures (hello 9 National Parks), in depth conversations, movie nights, exploring new areas, car rides, and some family time. Marriage is something you truly have to CHOOSE to invest in for it to thrive.
I’m leaving this the same as last year. If i’m honest being stuck inside I didn’t spend very much the first portion of quarantine and then it was like I suddenly lost it and found myself being frivolous with spending: ordering more take out (we never did that before), I stopped meal planning which meant more on the fly meals and that meant more shopping, house updates meant trips to Lowes/Home Depot for items, and just less awareness after a few months of being more in tune with our finances.
I found myself praying more consistently this year than I have in a while. Prayers for our communities, prayers for our government, our health care workers, our teachers, our friends, our families, our world…our sanity. I feel like I am uttering prayers sprinkled throughout the day. I was doing a daily quiet time for a season and then, like it always does with me, I fell off the wagon. I am hoping that I lean more into God’s Word and glean more guidance moving forward.
You know the age ol’ saying of when you hit your 30s you begin to care less what people think of you and you feel more comfortable in your skin. I’m learning that for me, it rings true. I’ve really come to terms with working on my character and how I should be living through my life (and failing often) and if that doesn’t resonate well with everyone then that’s ok. We actually just had a large discussion last night with family about this. We are only in control of our reactions and we can’t rest on the reactions of others. I’m learning to really settle into my skin and love who I am (constant process) and how God created me to see the world. There is only one me and I bring a sense of difference to people/situations/relationships just as every other individual does. We all see the world differently and in those differences we can either sharpen one another (iron sharpens iron) or we can be dulled. I’m choosing to sharpen while still softening my already blunt edges.
2020 started with me still working at OTF. I really did enjoy that job while I had it; the people and community were always hyped and welcoming and that’s a great place to walk into every morning. However after hurting my hip and not really being able to do the workouts for that season it was harder to come into work, compile that with the early shift (I had to be at work most days at either 4:30 or 6AM) and almost a year of that schedule, my body & mind were burning out. Got actually opened a huge door for me with one of our regular gym members needing a new person for their team. So I already had lined up a work from home job literally RIGHT before COVID took over the world. It’s been a huge blessing to work from home and be able to contribute to our financial goals again.
HA. HA. HA.
I mean really…this is kind of laughable.
I will say this mainly gets any number at all because we were able to hit all of those amazing National Parks early this year when moving Eddie from California back to South Carolina.
Otherwise the most real recreation we’ve gotten is neighborhood walks and a few local parks and a kayaking adventure (that was awesome). We did also get to go out to Ocean Shade a few times to work on projects and then for the week that our house floors were having to be fixed so that was truly a nice little “break”.
What Good Things Happened This Year?
- Eddie coming home.
- Getting to see some amazing Landscape as we drove Cross Country
- Getting to stay with Meg & Shane for a few days while in Colorado (and seeing Beth & Bruce and their girls).
- Being able to spend some time with family.
- My brother & sister in law are expecting their first child in 2021!!!
- Getting the kittens.
- Eddie got me a kayak, hoping to use it more!
- We got some great things crossed off the house to-do list.
- A fun Harry Potter movie marathon with HP snacks.
- Reading more books.
- Cooking more.
- Finding gratitude in small things.
Challenges from 2020
- Not being able to spend time with family.
- Not being able to spend time with friends.
- When COVID first happened and the unknown, anxiety inducing fear that it came with and still sometimes lingers.
- Not being able to get plugged into a church community (one of our main goals this year before the virus hit).
- I felt super unmotivated for so many things.
- Feeling stuck. Not knowing how to move forward.
- Comparison. It was an ugly struggle sometimes for me.
May 2021 bring us all a sense of peace. I’m hoping it brings some beautiful things to light and some dreams to fruition.