Happy Freakin New Year!
2015 was the weirdest year of my life. How do you classify a year where you have your highest high and your lowest low? You don’t. You just say “Bye Felicia,” and you move on.
Up until November 20th, I would say 2015 was the best year ever. I had such a blast planning my dream wedding with Kyle, and the wedding itself on October 3rd was by far the most amazingly perfect day of my entire life. I had retired from my career in education and officially became a full time work from home girl boss. We had celebrated great friends getting married and giving birth to beautiful babies, met huge business milestones, and gone on fun trips. Things were going absolutely fabulously.
Until they weren’t.
When I lost my dad, my world changed as I knew it. It officially became the worst year of my life. As most of you were celebrating the holidays, planning super fun parties, and deciding what appetizer to make for New Year’s Eve, I was sitting at home wondering how everyone’s lives were moving forward when mine had stopped on November 20th. I still feel like I am in a bubble, even as I write this.
When the clock struck midnight last night and Kyle, my mom, and I watched the ball drop on tv, I had only one thought: this will be the first year without my dad. I got to spend eleven months with him in 2015. I will get to spend zero with him in 2016. My mind was seriously in a bad place.
When I woke up this morning, I thought more about this year and what I wanted it to be like for me. I know that my dad would smack me if I wasn’t approaching the new year going 90mph with big goals and big dreams, and I wanted to smack myself for the same. Thus came a shift in mindset.
I’m a huge fan of quotes (clearly), but one that I have been thinking about a lot lately is this one from Charles Swindoll:
I’ve heard this quote so many times over the course of my lifetime but have never really gotten it until now. Have you really thought about it? How the direction of our lives is tied directly to how we react to what happens to us?
FACT: Something really bad happened to my family and to me. It happened. We can’t fix it, we can’t bring my dad back, and we can’t keep living in a bubble of sadness.
FACT: Now is the time for us to CHOOSE how we react to losing my father.
I understand now how so many people spiral out of control when something difficult happens. Trust me, I get it.There have been moments where I have wanted to spiral out of control. There have been moments where I have questioned my choices, like why I have given up alcohol, when boozing seemed like it would cure my sadness and pain temporarily. I refuse to be someone who is destroyed by the bad hand that I have been dealt. I choose to overcome the sadness of 2015 and be magnificent in my own mind again…..I mean, 90% is a huge percentage!
I’ve never been a big resolution person; I’ve always focused more on goals and achieving them. I have some big goals for 2016 and I’m choosing to approach them with the same happiness, joy, and zest for life that I have always had. Yes, I am different than I was last year. I will learn to live with that. Until then, I will focus on the things that make me happy, being a good person, changing as many lives as I possibly can, overcoming obstacles, and living a life that makes my dad proud.
Regardless of how your 2015 ended up, remember that today was the first page in a very blank 365 page book. This year can be whatever you want it to be and can be filled with whatever you want to fill it with. Dream big, work hard, and react to life in a way your future self will thank you for.
I’m going to own 2016. I hope you do the same!