The past two years, I’ve adopted a one-word theme to guide me through the next twelve months; I’ve always waited until after the new year to write about the choice here, but this year I can’t wait.
I don’t like to wish away time, but I could not be more ready for 2012 to end and for 2013 to begin.
This year has been one of my most challenging — certainly not what I had envisioned when I adopted the word UP and the image of a hot air balloon last year at this time.
While there were some amazing highs in 2012 like the wonderful expansion of Gemelli Press with the release of four new books, finally seeing Rome and meeting many online friends for the first time in person both in the Eternal City and here in Calabria, visiting with family and lifelong friends in the United States, publishing my ebook, and finding out I was pregnant, my miscarriage and D & C in May pretty much deflated my hot air balloon for much of the rest of the year.
Now, closing out 2012, I feel like I’m mostly emotionally healed, or at least getting there, but my due date around Thanksgiving had me revisiting all those thoughts and feelings again; this holiday season is proving to be another challenge. Add to that an increasingly depressed economy, particularly here in southern Italy where we’ve basically been in a depression forever, which means little work for P, and various other stumbling blocks in our lives sprinkled throughout the year, and well, 2012 has been decidedly UPhill.
But of course, P and I are still here, and we’re still going strong. We haven’t had it nearly as bad as many — the victims of numerous natural disasters come to mind first and foremost — and we continue to keep those who have had it much, much worse in our thoughts. A year like this can either break or make a couple stronger, and I feel confident we’re falling into the latter group. Though, of course, that hasn’t been easy either.
Feel down came quite naturally this year — and that is exactly how I know I chose well with UP. Seeing it there on my vision board helped whenever I needed a pick-me-UP, even if it was just the thought that “Hey, things have to go UP from here, right?”
And they have been looking UP in the latter half of the year, I think, or at least that’s how I choose to see it. Perspective and perception are so important in approaching life’s big and little challenges. I choose to look at things optimistically and with hope for the future. It’s easy to be positive when things are going well, but how do we respond when things don’t look so great?
How we react to challenges and obstacles defines us.
So bring it on, 2013, because I’m armed with my new one-word theme:
I love GROW because it encompasses many different types of growth — the continued growth of Gemelli Press and my own writing as I refocus my efforts on new projects, my relationship with P, a new direction in our Calabrian life that we hope will involve GROWing and raising more of our food and perhaps even a new business venture pertaining to that, and hey, maybe even a bambino/a if the Universe so desires.
G R O W , G R O W , G R O W !
I also like GROW because the concept is closely related to last year’s UP; as much as I would love to slam the door shut on 2012 and never open it again, I know last year’s events will continue to influence me in 2013 and beyond . . . and that’s not a bad thing.
I’m learning and growing from those experiences every day, and for that I am grateful.
I look forward to much GROWth in 2013.
Do you have a one-word theme for 2013?