Sunday, January 5, 2020

One Little Word 2020 - Bounty

There is something about a new year that fills me with joy and possibility. Just like the start of a new school year, January 1st reminds me that we constantly get the chance to start over, that I can have a chance to begin anew. It is a liberating feeling.

The new start this year felt especially powerful. The last five months have been filled with small, but all encompassing, health issues. On January 2nd I had my last scheduled test, January 8th brings, what I hope, will me my last scheduled appointment -- beyond regular check-ups. It has filled me with anxiety, but now I face forward with a feeling of gratitude. 

With that in mind, I turned to making my resolutions and a time to reflect here on my blog. I am not a huge one for resolutions, I rarely keep them. Often I find more joy in picking a word to focus my year around. I wrote about that last year HERE with my word for 2019, brave. It became more important than I could have ever predicted. 

This year I wanted to find a new word. I thought about it a lot, but then I considered a word that meant a lot to me.  Bounty. I first found a love for this word when I read Kristen Ashely’s book by the same name. 
It would be hard for me to put into words how much I love this book. It might be my all-time favorite romance book. The seventh book in the Colorado Mountain series, this book follows the story of Deke and Justice. Doesn’t hurt that Deke is a ringer (in my mind) for Jason Momoa. The word bounty is almost like a code between the two for the blessings that surround them. I’ve thought about it a lot while struggling a bit this year, instead turning my focus to all of the blessings I am surrounded by. I truly am blessed. To remind myself of that, I think bounty would be a fabulous reminder this year to focus on what is important. 

And while I am not a resolution fan, I do have a goal this year. In 2019 I decided to start taking better care of my skin. I turned forty-five last year and while I love my age, I could tell my skin was feeling the impact of time. So I started getting facials from a person I love. I also made sure to actually take care of my skin each day. This year I want to do the same for my body. I’m trying hard not to focus on weight, but how I feel. To think about what I put in my body, the fuel I use, and how I take care of myself. 

This break I’ve done a lot of reading. While devouring a romance book one day, I came across the following passage. 

In the Yoga Sutras, we find the principles of Abhyasa and Vairagya. Practice and nonattachment. Practice means always showing up to do the work. Putting forth effort. Nonattachment means letting go of the outcome of that work. Letting go of the things that prevent us from seeing ourselves clearly - fear or pain, expectations or pleasure. We observe those things, then we let them pass us by. 

I wish I could remember what book this was from, but I’ve read too many and cannot find which one I copied it down from. Suffice to say, it made me sit up. I think this can apply to a lot in my life. I need to treat my body the best I can and not measure my progress based on if I weigh what I want, or get in shape as fast as I’d like. This could also apply to teaching - just because I put forth my best effort does not mean I will always see immediate results. It can also apply to parenting. 

So there are my thoughts on what 2020 will look like for me. I’m focusing on the bounty in my life and treating my body with respect, knowing that I might not see immediate results. As for reading, I’m going without a goal there again. I haven’t picked a book goal in awhile. I don’t love tracking my reading on Goodreads, but I do like to look back on what I’ve read. This year when I tried it was a struggle because so many of my books are ebooks. I read somewhere in the neighborhood of 464 books, the majority of those begin romance books I read for me. I still love reading middle grade and young adult books, but I’ve found that reclaiming my reading for me has been freeing. I’m continuing along that path this year with a Padlet I’ve made just for me to look over my reading as the year passes.

How about you? Do you pick a word for the year or make resolutions? Whatever you do, I hope you find yourself to have started off 2020 well and are enjoying the peace of a new year.