Maybe it has always been a thing and I was just never hip enough to recognize it. But it seems that having “one little word” for this New Year is defining early January. Seeing the #olw all over Facebook, blog posts and Instagram prompted me to do what I oftentimes do best…jump on the bandwagon.
Consequently I spent the past few days thinking about one word for myself that I would like to define both my 2014, and 2014 for my family. I even lost my shiz at dinner last night and screeched that our one family word for 2014 was going to be SILENCE. (I may have said fricking silence, but that wouldn’t work, cause duh…its two words.)
Finally I came up with my word: BRAVE. Then I read a blog post where someone said their word was GIVE. And I wanted my word to be GIVE. Because that’s a pretty bitchin’ word too. And then I saw an IG post where someone said their word was GRACE. And I wanted my word to be GRACE. Because, yup, that’s a pretty bitchin’ word too.
This morning folding laundry I started thinking: Who am I to kid? I don’t make resolutions at any time during the year, because I really suck at keeping them. And I hate disappointing myself on that grand a scale. In thinking about the likelihood that I would not keep up with my braveness(?) this year, my mind lazily shifted to the area that rationalizes my surrendering to something before I’d even begun.
Realizing I wouldn’t stick with my word, any word, I started questioning why I needed a word anyway. Why do I need to change; to be more brave…to be more anything? I’m a pretty good person overall. I am a pretty good mom, with pretty good kids. I’m a pretty good wife and a pretty good friend. What compels me to feel as though I need to be better at any of those things? I certainly have no interest in being the best, because to me that sounds utterly exhausting.
Sure, there are things that being brave may help me accomplish. I may push to sell our house, it’s something we’ve talked about for years. I may discuss adoption more, it’s something I’ve dreamed of doing for years. I may offer my opinion even when I know it’s not a popular one. I may, I may, I may. But if I choose to pursue anything in my life, I can do it without a word. And if none of those things happen? If everything stays the same; if I don’t grow or stretch spiritually or emotionally; I think I’ll be okay. My kids, and my marriage and the world will be okay.
That being said, there will undoubtedly be times this year when I compare myself to others. I will look at women who live their word; people who accomplish and stick with their resolutions. Who are the best at what they do. And I will look at myself and feel badly. I will wish I was the best at something. I will wish I had a word.
I will be thirty-nine in a few days. Perhaps the gift that I will give myself this year is being okay with who I am; being happy without a word. Where I am is certainly not perfect. And there may come a time when I would like a guiding one worded principle. So this year I will also remind myself to question whether or not I need better, wonder if I need more, or continue to believe it is okay to stay the same.
For right now, I’m anti-word. But in the spirit of the New Year I will perhaps focus on little shifts instead. Conceivably what I can do is focus on a few things I’d like to look back on this year and say I’ve accomplished. That’s at least a little brave right?1. More control, less peeing in my pants when I sneeze.
2. More eye gazing, less phone scrolling, while I nurse the baby.
3. More family game nights, less get-the-kids-to-bed-as-fast-as-possible nights.
4. More time away from the kids, less time worrying about being away from the kids.
5. More truth, less sarcasm.
6. More reaching out, less folding in.
7. More making fun of myself, less making fun of my husband.
8. More interacting with the kids, less napping while they play their iPods.
9. More happy where I am, less look at where she is.
Whether you’re an OLW kinda gal or not, I wish you nothing but the best in 2014. Here’s to keep on keeping on. And here’s to enjoying each other for what we are right now.