Do you ever get so caught up in a task that you forget to breathe? Something that requires complete focus and concentration, and the slightest distraction could be disaster. I do this all the time. From decorating a cake and parallel parking, to a serious game of jenga...I could easily pass out if I give it too much thought.
Yesterday I read another blog, one of my favorites, and the post asked readers to find a single word that best describes how you plan to approach this new year. Taking all that you learned from 2010, and using it to redefine 2011...In one word. I love this kind of stuff because it really makes you think. And I did. I took stock of all that happened last year, and re-evaluated where I am today... All the growth, all the setbacks, the frustrations, the highs, the lows, the laughter, the tears...all of it...and my word was "exhale."
I realize that I spent most of last year holding my breath, in fear of what the future would bring. I worried about everything..from milestones and shunts, to preschool and everything in between. And the one thing that I learned from 2010 is that my worry doesn't change a thing. Life is gonna happen whether I stress about it or not. So why not breathe, already? If I could tell new Moms, going through that first year, one thing it would be " just breathe." And that's good advice for anyone. We spend so much energy worrying about jobs, finances, relationships, and health issues. We let ourselves get so caught up in things that are out of our control, that we suddenly realize we've been holding our breath for a year, just waiting for our fears to become reality. I heard a quote once that said it best..."Don't let your fears of tomorrow steal your joys of today."
This year I plan to exhale more. I want to breathe in all of the beauty and wonder that life holds, and release all of the fear and uncertainty. I don't want to be so completely focused on the details that I miss the big picture.
Will I still stress? Of course. Will I still get a knot in my stomach when something doesn't feel right. Yep. But I hope that I can recognize those moments for what they are, and move past them. I hope that I can continue to move forward, instead of becoming paralyzed with fear. And I hope that I always remember that with the rain comes new life, and the ability to grow.