Instead of making resolutions for the New Year I decided to join the One Little Word movement where you choose a word to be your focus for the year.
My word is Onward! The word itself is often used an adverb describing a type of action as in "Despite being overwhelmed by the amount of Christmas decorations she owned, she forged onward in sorting through them." It is also used as an adjective describing a noun as in "She was excited about her onward direction." In both cases it means moving forward rather than backwards or stalling out altogether.
As I think of the year ahead I see a lot of endings. I'll end a job I've enjoyed for the last seven years and a profession I've loved for forty years (really? yes, and that doesn't count working in a library during my college years!) We will leave a house we have rebuilt to our tastes and flourished in as a couple and a family during almost three decades. I will leave many friends and family members who I will miss greatly. But endings bring new beginnings with new chances for onward movement, and that's exciting to anticipate as I begin what I hope will be the last third of my life. Onward to Boulder!
To get there, however, is going to take a lot of work. I'll admit it, packing up and moving is daunting. Of course we'll hire movers, but before that someone needs to go through all this "stuff" and figure out what is worth moving and somehow get rid of the rest. Since an embarrassing amount of this stuff is mine and I want (need) control over how things are packed and labeled, that someone is me. Both Ben and Paul have their roles in this process, but I'm the lead person in this aspect of the move and I know from clearing out and cleaning up my mothers house that it will be both physically and emotionally hard. But it can -- and will-- get done! Onward to sorting, discarding, packing…whatever it takes!
There's another kind of work to do before we leave -- getting physically ready. Once I get there I want to walk, hike, and bike in the great outdoors resource that are so readily available. Being in better physical shape is key to enjoying all the area has to offer. Onward to eating better and exercising more!
And once we are settled in our new city we face the the challenge of building a new life. I'll be retired and while that has great appeal, I've generally found work to be engaging, exciting, and stimulating, not to mention a good source for developing friendships. We've deliberately chose a house located within easy reach of activities and people but it will take some creative energy to figure out what I want to do with this new abundance of unscheduled time and to create a network of supportive friends. Onward to finding new ways of learning and growing and connecting with others without the structure of work!
When I talked over these ideas with Ben he said that if he was going to pick a word he'd choose Refocus. I thought it was a perfect match for Onward. Onward to refocusing our lives!
Yes, Onward! is my watch cry for 2014.