One Word for 2013: Renewal: Part 2
Yesterday I posted my one word for 2013: “renewal.” Now here are some specific areas in which I feel the need for renewal:
• Writing. Although I began blogging this year, I have not made much time at all for indulging in my love of other types of creative writing. I have been promising myself every year that I would return to the revised draft of my long-ago NaNoWriMo novel, yet so far I haven’t made any further progress on it. This is something I really want to do for my own fulfillment. I don’t have any illusions about finding a professional, commercial publisher for it, although I’d like to try; I’m really thinking of looking into self-publishing, just so I can say I did it. And, since I’m not getting any younger, I’d love to have a workable draft finished before my next birthday in September. So I will make this public here: My first act of renewal will be to renew my zest for writing. And to help me get started, I've signed up for an online writing course.
• Health and fitness. This is something everybody identifies with. Two years ago I had thyroid disease that really took a toll on me; last year I had a lingering virus and a fall and concussion. So I haven't been paying enough attention to exercising in a while. I’m reasonably healthy now but I need to concentrate on getting more fit and (hopefully) losing about 10 pounds. During the nice warm weather I find it pretty easy to go out and jog, but I get completely lost in the winter. So I need to find indoor exercises. And just this morning I went out and bought myself some pretty new workout wear, just to help get in the mood!
• Return and recommitment to blogging. Last New Year’s Day I began this blog in a rush of enthusiasm. I was constantly looking for things to write about and managed to find quite a few. As weeks and months passed, I discovered a wealth of wonderful blogs and wonderful people blogging, and I really enjoyed reading and meeting all of them. I tackled the A-Z Challenge with enthusiasm. But in time I found that I was beginning to neglect both my own blog and those of others that I had enjoyed and signed up to follow. Yes, time does get scarce sometimes, but this year I want to form the habit of blogging at least once a week, as well as visiting other blogs at least once a day. I enjoy having this outlet for my thoughts, feelings, enthusiasms, and sorrows, and I don’t want to lose that.
• Faith. I strongly believe that God saw me through the trials of these past years; I certainly called on Him often enough. I’ve found sustenance from attending Mass and being part of my church community, but I also want to explore and deepen my faith by learning more about exactly what faith is and how God’s presence is manifested in our lives. I finished up this year by reading The Seven-Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton and Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander, both of which gave me a lot to think about. I plan to continue my reading in this area.
• My love of learning. From advancing as a crocheter to returning to my passion for English history, I hope to spend this year constantly learning—one of the things I originally planned to focus on in this blog. I also want to learn to cook and bake more than I do rather than relying on the same recipes all the time. And who knows what other opportunities there may be to learn? I hope to stay open to them.
• Being and becoming a more giving person. This is one area in which I feel I benefited from the experience of caregiving. Since caring for my mother, I feel as though I’ve opened up much more to the world and other people. I’m still shy and introverted, but now I think there are really things I can do within those limits to help others: the prayer shawl ministry I joined at church; the Christmas-caroling group, again at church, in which we visited nursing homes; and the day my husband and I spent working for Habitat for Humanity are just small examples. I really believe that every one of us can do things to make life easier for those who need help.
• And of course maintaining and renewing my ties with family and friends.
Again, I wish all of you a healthy, happy, and prosperous new year, and may you achieve all of your own goals!