Just kidding, mostly, but hear me out here. Say seeing moose is one of my resolutions, which it is. To see moose, you have to do something. You have to move your heart. You have to move your body. There are logistics involved. And excitement, and maybe a bit of fear. As much as Scarlet is hoping one will wander into our yard, which my neighbor says happened once five years ago, you have to make it happen with moose. That’s how they are. So you have to do research. You have to do the work – booking a hotel, or planning a day trip. Getting camera equipment ready. Being prepared. Going. Seeing moose.
“..I want to see more moose. That’s a resolution. However, that resolution includes getting out of my comfort zone and planning a trip. Not to mention the photography and writing involved with said experience. Is all of that cheating? I figured it was better than saying, “eat more chocolate.” (or cookies)
My resolutions all meet in the middle. They’re all about being brave. They’re all about being connected. They’re all about being healthy. They’re about practicing what I preach. My #OneWord of the year is PRACTICE. I learned so much in 2014.
– I learned that I have PTSD-caused anxiety sometimes. I learned that it got worse than it ever had, surrounding the issue of my daughter starting kindergarten. I learned that it was a tragic period in my own life and that my body remembered more than my mind did. What I used to think was just a quirk has a name and is actually classified under mental illness. It’s ok to say it. It’s ok to yell it. 80% (or more) of us will suffer from depression and/or anxiety at some point in life, however fleeting. I’ve only just begun the descent into discovering more about my own. It’s scary. I don’t want to plummet too fast. I don’t want to decompress. I go down slowly – one step at a time – into the mess that is my mind. And into the memories of the greatest and earliest loss I know. I want to treat the cause and not the symptoms, although if it comes to that, so be it.
– I learned that I’m surrounded by wonderful people, and that while it’s tempting to hide behind my computer and only focus on the wonderful online life (which is very wonderful and very real), I’m glad that so many of my in-person friendships have not only flourished despite my anxiety, but I’ve made NEW friends too! How does that happen? I feel like the biggest nut in the.. nut package.. always. Even today. I wasn’t feeling great. A friend stopped by to pick up Scarlet for a playdate, only to stay here with her daughter for four hours. We all lazed around or worked or even napped (ahem) and snacked. That’s friendship when you can be completely useless for an entire day and you’re still going to be friends and hang out next week.
– I learned, through an anniversary road trip, that I live within easy driving distance of moose. I always have. I probably always will. I dream about them. It’s time to just do it. I don’t want to dream. I just want to do it more.
– I learned that although it can be hard to let people in and out of our hearts and lives, it’s a fact of life. Make those moments count. Kiss them full on the lips. Tickle them past bedtime, and always, always choose fort-making over laundry folding.
(In fact, I just realized I was festering up in my office before bedtime, so I quickly took a blog writing break and ran downstairs to make sure I got a proper goodnight to my kids. Last night of vacation and all! These things count.)
– I learned that I can comfortably photograph weddings and newborns and houses and candles and weird active chilled beams.
– I learned that I have to drink more water. Why on earth don’t I drink more water, when we’re given the knowledge that doing so will lead to better health, better digestion, more energy, better skin, and magical rainbow unicorns?
– I learned more about writing. I learned about my writing with its dense background. Writing is as important to me as photography, but it’s more difficult. If it were the only thing I loved, I’d probably be screwed because what else would I do for money, when I’m so hesitant to write for money? That said, this was not a big year for writing outside of my blog. It was a year for photography and anxiety and data entry and puppy dog tails. Literally. As well as weird cats that I only like for 5% of the day. (it’s during that 5% because Bella is cutely on my lap right now) I spent a lot of the end of 2014 wishing I could be writing as much as photographing. 2015 will be a year for anthologies. I’ve been working on submitting to some already, actually. Stay tuned. (my fingers are crossed!) Speaking of which, I was featured in Touched Magazine over the weekend!
I’ve been feeling a bit doubtful, despite 2015 having the sweetest start. I’ve been feeling like I won’t achieve.. anything. And that I’ll be shaking in a corner soon enough, and that I’m in over my head in every direction.
**I’ve never picked a Word of the Year before. It’s true that I feared I would sound schmarmy doing so, but mainly it’s because I never had one speak to me. This year, PRACTICE spoke to me so I decided to run with it. Do you have a word?