A New year…Always such a joyful and hopeful time, right? A feeling of a fresh start and a renewal of hope as we sit amongst the embers of the year that has passed. A symbol of new beginnings, a clean slate with which to start (and fail) again and again with the same tiresome resolutions – lose weight, exercise more, eat clean, slow down, be more present. Until we inevitably plunge back into the rat race, the hamster wheel, the busy lifestyle that distracts us from what’s important.
As I’ve evolved, I have learnt that as important as it is to have goals; I also need to accept and adapt to the unpredictability of Life. I have learnt to roll with the punches and use every experience as a means to grow. And as much as social media has become a cacophony of everyone’s highlights, achievements, accomplishments – the memories and moments they want to celebrate and freeze. Curated feeds, beautiful images, pretentious quotes and captions (and I’m guilty of doing this too). As much as it’s become a mirage… a filtered and watered down version of reality – I have also caught glimpses of people’s real lives too. Of how life can change in a instant through sudden illness, tragic loss and extreme adversity. I have seen how fleeting this journey can be and I have learnt to focus on my own path. And so now, a new year has become less and less about resolutions and more about reflecting on the year that has passed. Thankful for how it has made me grow, and grateful to be entering another, irrespective of what it may hold for me…
I’m not sure if it was the prospect of turning 40 responsible for the full blown onslaught of a midlife crisis, but 2019 was a turning point for me. Straddled between youth and old age, if it wasn’t glaringly obvious before, then it certainly had become more so, that time isn’t standing still; and it forced me to re-evaluate how I want to live my life – made me question who I am beneath all these layers and life experiences. Beyond all these titles. Without all the baggage and responsibilities. In a way, it felt like I had ripped off the giant Band-Aid that I was trying to keep in place for far too long, revealing wounds and scars that I had even forgotten was there…or perhaps, just gotten accustomed to bear. In a way it felt like time was running out. That at 40, there’s no more waiting for better days – that these are the better days I had always looked forward to; and it was the first time in a long time that I reflected in more depth on what I wanted out of life and not just tag along life’s course blindly. We have to sacrifice a lot in this journey of Life, but we should never have to sacrifice who we are in the process.
I’ve always been a glass half full kind of person. Looking for silver linings amidst Life’s storms. But this mind set has also made me adverse to change. I suppose, like all things, the prospect of change can be daunting. The familiar, no matter how bleak, always feels safer than the unknown. The what ifs weighing heavier than the right now; but, what’s become a kind of mantra for me over the years in times of inner conflict, is that you will knock your head against the same wall until you change what needs to be changed. I suppose 40 was my “now or never” moment of taking the plunge towards a new beginning and a new path. Amplifying the constant reminder that life is fluid…it is always moving, unfolding, changing and you’re never have to stay stuck where you are. Essentially, we have feet, not roots and we have the ability to change direction at any time. Tomorrow’s are not promised and turning 40 has made me realise that I have to live life authentically every single day and the only person holding me back was me.
So yeah, 2019 was a bit of a climb. A floodgate of emotions that saw the best and worst of me. And I would have never in my wildest dreams thought that I’d end up here. End up in my own home <3 And I’m ready for it! Ready for the adventure and the memories I’m about to build.
Thanks for reading!