My Year of Living Honestly
I’m not much of a rear-view mirror gal, but I think it’s healthy at the end of the year to sit quietly and allow the last 365 days to settle around you like a nice, fluffy layer of snow or a scratchy, irritating barbed wire fence. If we figure out the theme of the year just lived, maybe it can teach us something for 2013.
2012 was a good year for me; for us, in our little nuclear family of husband, wife and two dogs. 2012 was my year of living honestly. I haven’t had a whole lot of those since I grew up. I’ve had years of lying to myself or deluding myself or self-medicating myself or just flat-out, not paying attention. I’ve even had a few where I was deliriously happy. But, completely honest? Not so much.
This was the year that I challenged many of my long-held ‘core beliefs’ about politics. The year I stopped drinking the Kool-Aid and started looking for the truth that underlies all of the spin and manipulation of the two political parties. It was shocking, painful, humiliating and in the end, freeing. The realization that you don’t have to be ‘right’; that you don’t have to fight to the death for your side. Pure liberation.
2012 was the year that I realized that my radio persona had bled so much into my personal life that I had lost track of ‘me’. What’s funny and entertaining 4 hours a day on a morning radio show, isn’t quite so charming the other 20 hours. That the professional necessity of always having to have something to say about everything is fake and tedious. That real life dictates that one listen, learn and absorb, rather than spew.
This was also the year that I admitted that family is important and that I miss mine; terribly. I ran out the door at 19 and never looked back. I couldn’t wait to be on my own and proximity to my family was not a priority…at all. Now, it is.
In May, I spontaneously bought a 10 acre farm in northern Michigan, even though I live and work in Colorado. Once I caught my breath, I had to figure out why I jumped in. I’m financially conservative and measured when it comes to buying something as simple as a new coffee maker and yet, I bought a second home 1600 miles away from the first one, in a weekend.
That was me speaking up. The me that has always wanted to live near the water; the me that misses family and ‘home’. The me that has been buried under my ego and money and career aspirations for many years. The me that is truly, me.
So, here we go. Every day is another chance, but there is something about starting a brand new year. It’s like when you were a kid in elementary school and your teacher gave you a nice, clean sheet of paper and a box of crayons. You almost didn’t want to spoil that clean sheet, but alas, nothing is created if the sheet is left clean.
What will 2013 be for you? You don’t have to decide ahead of time. I didn’t one year ago. In fact, just take the first step on the path and that could be as simple as vowing to open up to the newness of a new sheet of clean, unspoiled paper. Get out your crayons……