I do not often do end/start of year reflections – at least not written ones. However, the change from 2017 to 2018 seems significant, and so I find myself feeling like this is a good exercise for me to do.
A lot of change. A lot of growth. New things, new locations, new positions.
2017 saw me working as a Teacher’s Aide one day a week and Annabelle going to Family Day Care, which she loved. I was pregnant with Alexander for three quarters of the year and had a newborn for the last two months of it. We bought a shiny new blue car. We moved house – not just to another local place, but a 45 minutes drive into the deep south of Tasmania.
2017 bought closeness. Closer to friends and particularly closer to family. My parents live only a few minutes away and my brother and his family are just down the road. I have grown closer to friends, chatting often over messenger while feeding the baby, or late in the night when I should really be asleep but am enjoying the quietness found while children slumber. I had a baby, and there is nothing quite like the closeness of caring for your new child.
2017 felt like a year of “Positioning”. Moved house. Moved “careers” – not that I really tend to think of teaching as My Career. Last year saw a big shift from out of school-based teaching and into a completely new area of working as part of a pregnancy and parenting support service, where my role is largely writing based and concerning communications. It was interesting to find myself suddenly in a position which sees some of my major areas of interest drawn together. Finding my feet in my new role – an ongoing process – stretched me and challenged me in ways I found very difficult and unfamiliar.
2018 feels special… I have not felt this sort of anticipation at the start of a new year for a long time. It feels full of promise. Personally, I feel that 2017 was a year of shift and positioning (physically, job-wise, focus-wise). 2018 feels like the year where things are going to HAPPEN.
In church on December 31st, part of the sermon stood out – a word, really: Intentionally. A friend later shared this photo:
Hmm, that seems a bit like confirmation. Be intentional.
The next day, another friend wrote under a picture of my children: “They grow up sooo fast… value your closeness & make it good to be ‘with’ them.” More confirmation of what I was feeling in my spirit, to be intentional this year.
For my birthday, I ordered a new Bible. My previous Bible I received when I was 16 years old. Half my life ago. It feels significant that this is the time I finally buy a new one.
So this year my intention is to be intentional.
I plan to be intentional in how I am with my children: enjoying, raising, disciplining, teaching, and so on. Parenting is no doubt the most challenging, most rewarding thing I have ever done, and being intentional (though it takes more energy) makes it even better.
I will be intentional in how I spend my time. Last year I wasted so much time. This year no doubt I will do some excellent time wasting again, but I plan to waste LESS time, and make intentional choices in how I spend my time. I want to get to the end of a day and feel like it has not just slipped through my fingers.
I intend to write more. I will be writing more for my work, but I also intend to write more for my own sake. I want to get back to writing creatively, I want to get back to journalling, I want to blog more. I want to try my hand at writing articles and maybe earning some money.
Most of all, really, I want to reach the end of 2018 and be able to look over the year and see that it was a year lived well and deliberately. A year where my family members and I grow and develop positively spiritually, emotionally, physically, and in every other way.
A year of living on purpose. I’m excited to see what happens!