Archive | December, 2010

2011: The Year of Joy

16 Dec

Younger me. I love this picture because I just look so blissfully happy.

It’s that time of year again. Time for reflection and resolutions. While I generally don’t make standard “New Year’s Resolutions”, I do generally take some time to reflect on how things are going and make note to begin implementing changes I need to make, but haven’t started yet.
Looking back on the past couple of years, 2008 was a year of learning. I found out I had Hashimoto’s Disease at the end of 2007 and 2008 consisted of my absorbing as much information (very indiscriminately) as I possibly could.
2009 was a time of continued learning, but mostly seemed to focus on integration. What adjustments do I need to make with this diagnosis? What medications or treatments might I need? Am I satisfied with this doctor? Am I feeling better? How do I get back to normal? During 2009, I very much retreated into myself. I had a lot of introspection to do. I left an unsatisfying job, stepped back from volunteering, and was fortunate to have time to do some much needed self-exploration.
2010 was the real journey back to myself. I found a doctor who listens to me and am building a relationship with him. We’re not 100% there yet, but I feel confident about my future with him. The biggest boon is I have time to talk with him and really vet my concerns, as he is part of a concierge practice. At the very least, I feel heard, which was something I was sorely lacking with previous practitioners. I’m finally on a level of medication where I am starting to feel like my old self. I have energy to get most things done – certainly the things that NEED to be done. I have lost 30 pounds. My blood pressure and cholesterol have been on the decline. I am breaking out of some bad thinking cycles and learning to distinguish helpful and harmful information. I rejoined my volunteer theater group and directed a musical I loved. I am learning to distinguish between things and people that help my life and those that hurt it.
Which leads me to the title of this post. Looking back, I can see where I’ve been and the path I’ve been forging. I am really happy with the progress I’ve made this year, and can even look back on some recent difficult times with appreciation for the things I have learned through those experiences.
What I want to focus on in 2011 is Joy.
I want to practice cutting things from my life that are negative to make more room for the positive.
Negative things I’m focusing on cutting down include listening to people or reading publications that only serve to get me worked up about things I have no control over, or cause me to focus too heavily on issues I simply cannot devote that much energy to. I need to listen to less talk radio and more music. I need to decide when reading materials if this is something worth putting time into, and, if so, how to put synchronize productive effort with my emotions. Political information can be good if it motivates me to take some sort of action, and certainly can be helpful to store in my mind for making decisions for things such as voting. However, dwelling on issues I have little to no control over do me little good, so I am aiming to not hold onto them and their associated emotions for as long.
Positive things I want to encourage include re-focusing on my creative talents. This includes singing, sewing, crafting, etc. I want to feel good about these abilities again. I have gotten well away from weight issues that strongly impact my health in a negative way. All my labs are looking good and my sleep apnea is gone. While losing some more weight would be lovely, I don’t believe it is necessary, and my current figure is a nice one. I want to focus on enjoying my body and getting to a point where I can appreciate it for aesthetic and practical reasons and stop the cycle of finding “fixes”. I have decided to stop the daily weigh-ins. I may try to do it once a week, but won’t feel guilty if it’s as low as once a month. Trying to get to an arbitrary number is threatening to create seriously unhealthy thinking in my brain and I want to nip that in the bud. I guess that falls under negative things I’m cutting from my life, but they go hand in hand.
All in all, I am looking forward to the new year. I will be earning some extra cash. We’re getting to a really nice place financially. I’m enjoying where we are instead of feeling like so many things need to change for me to be happy.
It’s time to focus on making joy a way of life.

For my steampunk interested friends.

5 Dec
Clockwork Crow for $10.00

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