I haven’t been quite ready to let go of 2017. We were closing out the year in our favourite place, Struisbaai, Western Cape, with our fur children, and saying goodbye to 2017 meant saying goodbye to our little piece of paradise and coming back to reality. Our immediate reality meant packing up our lives and moving house. I know – who goes on holiday for three weeks and then comes back all rested only to be exhausted by moving? I guess we are those people then. And I haven’t been ready for 2018 because instead of finding inspiration for the year to come while suntanning on the beach, I was ‘pulling-myself-towards-myself’ (as my husband usually says) after the challenging (but good) year that was.
I haven’t been too excited for the new year either because I felt I didn’t really have a vision or a direction for 2018. I have been holding on to those sweet moments in Struisbaai because I didn’t want a clean slate. I had pushed so hard to get through 2017 and survive what life threw at me (us). I was also proud of how far I (we) had come that I wasn’t ready to have the slate wiped clean and start from zero again. I didn’t want to forget all that I had achieved and file it under “the year that was” and start over again.
But as I write this, I realise that it doesn’t have to be a clean slate. I don’t have to start from zero. I don’t have to reset everything. It might be a new year, but my achievements still stand. All that I had survived in 2017 are scars on my body to remind me daily how strong I am. Each and every life hurdle, moment of joy, happy memory, and all the blood, sweat and tears from last year are building blocks for the new year.
I don’t have a “how to be a better me” list of things I want to change this year. I am looking back on last year and realising I am so much stronger, I can endure so much more, I can be so much happier with less, and I have capacity to be content with life when everything around me points to complete chaos.
I am brave.
I am fierce.
I am strong.
I don’t have new year’s resolutions this year. I just want to be the braver, fiercer and stronger me that emerged from 2017 and be fully present every single moment of 2018. My advice for the new year then – don’t become overwhelmed with a long list of things you ‘have to do’ this year. Rather, realise how amazing you are and use that as building blocks for the next 365 days.