I feel like I’m leaping out of speeding clown car, careening down a curvy, fog-soaked road, in the dead of night, toward a tiny beacon of light, flickering on the other side of a huge chasm. Leaping over it is an act of pure faith. 2017was definitely not a good year for me. Perhaps the whole devisive political climate set the incessant negative tone, or perhaps it was my dear, loving husband being diagnosed with terminal cancer. Maybe it was everything in general and nothing in particular. Maybe it was in my stars or something I ate. But 2017 was a very rough year for me and most people I love.
Don’t get me wrong–there were lots of “life lessons”…bless their little hearts…
The biggest of which was learning on a very personal and visceral level that
It’s a mighty powerful lesson and one I grappled with after my own heart attack in 2016. But it’s amazing how easy it is to gloss over. Ignore. Push down. Forget.
Turns out, there are some things that you just can’t wish away…starting with a POTUS bent on pillaging the country, whipping up hatred, repealing health care, and destroying environmental protections and public lands. There are just some things you can’t pretend aren’t real. Cancer for instance.
I’m from a stubborn, head-strong, heart-proud, clan of renegade wimmin who power through things on their own. We “buck up” when things get tough. We grit our teeth and hunker down and do what needs doing. We’re terrible at asking for help and even worse at accepting it. We figure other folks have plenty to worry about in their own lives and need not be bothered by what’s going on in ours. We prefer to suffer in silence. Eat a lot of chocolate. And watch 1940’s noir movies on Turner Movie Classics in our jammies.
I’m going to trust that you want me to take better care of myself.
I’m going to believe you want happiness and peace and good health for me, as well as for yourself.
So, in 2018, I’m going to take more time off to play and laugh and make art and have adventures. I’m going to spend every moment I can with Albert and my family. I’m going to take Albert on an odyssey for his 80th birthday in late January to visit his beloved son Erik in Grass Valley and swing by my beautiful sister Kim’s homestead in the Sierras. We’re going to spend a couple of days at a fun, funky cabin in the Chiracuas for Valentine’s. I’m going to San Diego to visit my dear, old friends, Allan, Sandi, Ski, Ann, Virginia, Mnimaka, and others in April…and there WILL be a beach trip in September! In short, we’re going to LIVE every single danged moment we have left! I’m letting go of being such an over-doing, over-committing, over-obsessing person and use one (and only one) mantra in 2018…
The list of things I hope to do better in 2018 is short and sweet. No grand plans to change the world, save the planet, or single-handedly put an end to child abuse, racism, and war.
After years of dedicated resolution-making, intention-setting, and vision-boarding; here are my simple hopes for 2018…
My word for the year is: RELEASE.
Release ideas, people, things, obligations, relationships, and responsibilities that no longer serve me. Release guilt & shame & “never enough.” Release the demeaning, critical, mean-spirited self-talk I so often whisper to myself. Release the notion that my house has to be perfect to entertain friends instead of just a cozy, messy, life-spilling, joyful filled space for people to eat, drink, and be merry. Release the bad habit of trying to juggle too many balls in mid-air. Release clutter and collections gone viral. Release expectations and projections and being “stuck.” Release old hurts and slights and inscrutable break-ups with people I have loved.
Release dreams that no longer fit: I’m just never gonna make it to the jungles of New Guinea, for instance, or learn to play the cello. There’s a very good chance I’m never gonna finish my novel Brogan’s Book or challenge Mary Oliver to a poetic duel.
But I can learn to savor, enjoy, celebrate, and uplift all the things I love and believe in. I can spread joy and creativity and the marvelous healing balm of deep friendship. I can love and be loved and make tiny contributions to making the planet a better place. I can keep The Creative Cottage afloat and throw open the doors to greet you with hugs & laughter when you come to play. I can remind you to
Maybe that’s all I can do. But I have to believe it is enough. Enough to give, enough to share, enough to be just my whole, flawed, messy, HUMAN self in front of you because you can see through all that and into my heart. Where I love you. Where I will stand beside you, hoisting up the banner of our shared belief in love and friendship and healing.
So, here’s to 2018 and here is my wish for you…
I love you and will continue to plug away at life if you’ll join me in the glorious, difficult, absolutely relentless work of being a change-agent for joy. I’ve got your hand. We can get through it together. We’re on the high, windy, sacred cliff of Third Mesa in the land of Hopi as the last sun of 2017 sets over the mountains and the first glorious, radiant moon of 2018 rises to guide us on our soul’s deep and joy-full journey together. Let us begin…
Happy New Year!
With Great Love & Renewed Hope, Kaitlin
P.S. Check out my classes–please note some changes due to “Albert & Kait’s Great Adventure” in January!
© Copyright, Kaitlin Meadows. All Rights Reserved.