If I could attribute one word to the year 2013 it would probably have to be “challenging.” I don’t say that in the negative way that many people might see it in. I don’t mind challenging actually. Challenge is what keeps life interesting.
2013 marked Dusty’s second and third semesters here at Southwestern. It also marked my second and third semesters in the Seminary Studies for Student Wives certificate program, however, along with that it marked the first semester for me as a full fledged grad student. With that came the challenge of finding time for all the homework, classes, and my household tasks that take up my day. The kids tend to remind me that they need to eat more than once a week so I also have to fit shopping and meal prep in there every so often.
2013 brought on a 1st birthday and a 3rd birthday, a 5th wedding, and the 1 year anniversary of us moving to Texas. Dusty also “celebrated” his first year working for the medical equipment supply company. That brought on a small raise as well as a full time position with benefits. With the added hours the challenge came in finding time for the family, and his homework, as well as eating and sleeping sometime in there.
While we did have our fair share of good challenges we also had a few not so good challenges. However, through all those challenges we were able to hold ourselves together and become stronger as a family unit. While the year wasn’t 100% rainbows and sunshine I like to think that it was a pretty great year all together.
That leads me to the problem with January 2nd. Here is the thing, for at least a week, maybe even longer, goals are made (often in the term of “resolution”) for the coming year. With the rise of Pinterest there are now boards dedicated to all the things that a person plans to do to change their lives in the new year. From organization and scheduling to the classic weight loss and healthy eating all the well intentioned goals are set to be put into place on the first day of January.
Then January first hits and the gyms are full, budget guides are watched closely for the day, the grocery store runs out of produce do to the huge amounts of salads being eaten for lunch and dinner that day, and storage bins are out with shiny new labels on them ready to become a tidy organizational system. Everyone is excited to start out on their new life changing journey, when they wake up around noon after staying up entirely too late the night before ringing in the new year.
Then January 2nd rolls around. Everyone is back to the daily grind. Many are back to work, or for those like me who stay home with the children, its time to get them back to some type of regular schedule. The new of the Christmas gifts are starting to wear off and the bickering is back.
Then suddenly the reality that January 1st doesn’t really hold magical powers sets in. Looking at the well out lined calendars and to-do lists begin to become overwhelming. You start to wonder if you might have bitten off a bit more than you can chew.
That was my morning. The house was a disaster, the kids were fighting over everything, and I felt like I had been hit by several large trucks all at the same time. After disciplining my son for no reason (then immediately apologizing for messing up) I sat at the table, called Dusty and had a huge emotional melt down. It was at that moment I realized I had, and probably always have, put way to much stock in “The New Year.”
I have spent to much time, especially from Thanksgiving through the end of the year, saying things like “When the holidays are over I will___________” or “Next year will be better, I’ll start in January”
The problem with that is I expect that it will all just happen over night. The dedication, the motivation, the habits that took forever to form, all of it will just change once midnight strikes on January 1 and I will wake up a completely new person. It’s not that easy.
So, my number one goal is to change my mind set and to be ok with the fact that things aren’t going to change over night. I may not get my organizational plans and cleaning schedule put completely into place until December. I will have good days and I will have bad days but if I can forgive myself and I can be patient with my family we will get through this year just fine. Happy New Year EVERYONE!