Welcome to the thirteenth installment of my blog hop/writing exercise called Time Warp Tuesday here on Four of a Kind!
For those not familiar with Time Warp Tuesdays, which I host on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month, here is the background of how and why I came up with the idea. If you are here to participate and link up your post, you can do so with the Linky Tools at the end of this post (or if you have any difficulty using it, you can share the link to your post in the comment section here).
The gist of Time Warp Tuesday is to revisit and share some of our favorite blog entries from our archives and reflect on our journeys since we wrote them.
The theme for this week’s Time Warp Tuesday is: New Years
A new year, a fresh start, a chance to realign your priorities, focus your intentions and/or make some resolutions for the next twelve months of your life. Choose a post from your archives where you talk about preparing for or kicking off a new year in your life. Maybe you have written in the past about a new years tradition that is important to you, shared what your resolutions were for the coming year or blogged about the feelings and emotions that this time of year evokes in you. Then write a new post on your blog about why you chose the post that you did and what has happened in your life since.
Participants can write about whatever you want in your new blog entries. However, for those who might have needed some help and inspiration to get started, here are some questions to consider:
Why did you pick this post? If you wrote about making any new years resolutions, did you keep them? How have your new years traditions changed or evolved throughout your life? Are you making any new years resolutions this year? What kind of response did you get from readers in regards to your post? Has your perspective changed since the day you wrote your original post? Do you think you would still feel the same way if you were writing your post today? What have you learned about yourself, your family and your life since you wrote your original post?
Note: If you have an idea for a future Time Warp topic, theme and/or writing prompt, please feel free to share it in the comment section or send me an email. If I choose to use your idea, I will give you credit and link to your blog that week. Thank you to all who have already shared suggestions for future weeks! I do plan to use more of your ideas soon, but thought it would be nice to do another “holiday themed” Time Warp this week, which Jen from Here We Go Again suggested (to do holiday themed topics at the appropriate times of year). Thanks Jen!
Time Warp Tuesday: New Years
This week I am revisiting a post that I wrote on New Year’s Eve in 2008. Our baby girl Molly was born and died earlier that year (in April) and we had just celebrated/survived our first Christmas/Holiday season since we lost her. I recall how hard the holidays were that year and how very aware I was that something/someone was missing. I was impressed reading my old blog entry to see how I tried to make our Christmas fun and special that year, in spite of our grief, especially for Sean, who was five years old at the time. I was also moved to see what my old self was doing with my pain and sadness. I like that I was trying to find “joy in our journey” and that I was optimistic I could meet the next year in our life (2009) with an open mind and heart.
Here is a link to my post:
Please go and read the post that I am reflecting on today (and comment if you choose), if you haven’t already, and then come back here to see what I have to say about my journey since I wrote it.
***Here is where you left off before you stopped to read my old post.***
Ironically, at the time I wrote this post I was likely already pregnant (or soon to be) with our third child/second daughter Abby. I wouldn’t get my first BFP home pregnancy test for another two weeks or so, but our “rainbow baby” was already on her way to/in the very early developmental stages of joining our family. That fact would for obvious reasons dramatically change our life, our family and the nature of my grief and healing in the year following the birth and death of our second child/first daughter.
One of my favorite parts of my post was this:
“Joy is in the journey” really spoke to me, as over the past 4 1/2 years that we have been trying to conceive another living child, and really throughout much of my life, I have often gotten caught up in what’s next, as opposed to truly living in and trying to experience the present moment. The idea that true joy in life comes through appreciating the journey and not focusing on the destination resonates with me.
Three years later I still struggle at times not to think as much about what might happen next in my life versus trying to focus on living more mindfully in the present. I appreciate that there are many lessons in life we find ourselves having to learn over and over again. Sometimes these life lessons stick and other times we need to be reminded.
As I have said here before, I consider myself a work in progress. Seeing myself this way doesn’t get me off the hook from trying to be a better person, parent, spouse, child sibling, friend and neighbor, but it does help me to realize that I am not and never will be perfect and that’s okay.
In my old post I also shared my new years resolutions for 2009:
Kathy’s Resolutions for 2009:
1) For the way I live my life to reflect what I claim/believe my priorities are.
2) Transfer the self-discipline I have used to lose weight/get back in shape this year to other areas of my life where there are opportunities for improvement.
3) Knowing that Bob and I have a tentative plan this coming year for potentially expanding our family, try to have realistic expectations and turn the possible outcomes over to God — realizing what I do and don’t have control over.
4) Focus on the journey, instead of the destination.
I could easily use those all again for 2012, except for #3, as in this new year Bob and I plan to continue to work through our thoughts and feelings about the future of our family, as we try to make an important decision about if we are ready to put an end to our journey trying to have more children. Though we have not completely closed the door on trying, or at least being open, to having more children yet, for many reasons that make sense and feel right to us we are leaning towards making our soft decision to be done building our family a hard/final one.
I did take some time last month to consider where I want my focus and what I want my priorities to be in this new year. These are the resolutions that I came up with and will share with you today.
Kathy’s Resolutions for 2012:
• My general theme for 2012 is BALANCE!
• I want work towards achieving more balance in my life. This includes past resolutions that I have made of trying not to over program my family and my life with activities and commitments.
• In the past year I really got into writing more often, especially here on my blog, as well as beyond. Writing has become one of my passions – it is therapeutic and brings me a lot of peace and joy. However, I admit that many times I have allowed it to take precedence over other priorities, including people, in my life. This needs to change and I intend for that to happen, to balance the time I spend writing with the responsibilities I have in my life with my family and other commitments.
• Get back to the basics… Make housekeeping a priority in my life and “just do it!” One of my resolutions for 2011 was to do better in this arena and I actually did worse than in 2010. In the past I had a daily/weekly schedule for cleaning and would check tasks off my list. I will return to this approach in the New Year.
• Lose 5 – 10 lbs. and keep it off. Aim for formal exercise (a mix of group fitness, yoga, running, walking and doing DVDs at home) at least 3 – 5 time per week and when possible exercise 6 – 7 times.
One of the reasons that I think I have struggled to maintain balance in my life is that I have a tendency to get easily distracted, allow myself to lose focus and follow my whims. In the New Year I want to challenge myself to set daily and weekly task oriented goals and hold myself to accomplishing them. I will work to complete those tasks on a given day or week and then reward myself with time to write, read or something else that I want (but don’t necessarily need) to do.
I know that I have some fairly ambitious goals to achieve in this new year, but I like to set the bar high for myself and I believe that I will rise to the challenge. As I shared in my resolutions for 2009, I have been very successful in the past using self discipline to shed weight and get/stay in shape by watching what I eat and exercising consistently. If I transfer that self discipline to other areas and responsibilities in my life, I know that can and will keep my priorities in check and accomplish much of what I intend to in 2012.
Thank you for reading and for doing the Time Warp with me. I look forward to your feedback about this post, as well as reading and commenting on all of yours.
Please feel free to comment even if you didn’t write your own Time Warp Tuesday post. It is not too late to participate if you are interested, click here for the details.
The topic for the next Time Warp Tuesday is: Turnaround
Note: Special thanks to Lori from Write Mind Open Heart who suggested this topic! Lori told me that the idea came to her during a yoga class, which seems appropriate coming from a mindful living guru in our ALI Community. If you have an idea for a future Time Warp topic, theme and/or writing prompt, please feel free to share it in the comment section or send me an email. If I choose to use your idea, I will give you credit and link to your blog that week.
A new year is an opportunity for new beginnings and the chance to try to see events, experiences and people in your life in a new light and possibly from a different perspective. Choose a post from your archives, as Lori suggested, related to a “turnaround” in your life, “where something that you once saw as a curse has since become viewed as a blessing. Or something turned out not to be what you originally thought it was.” It may be that you wrote about this “turnaround” in your life in your old blog entry or the “turnaround” has happened since the time your wrote the post you chose to reflect on. Then write a new post on your blog about why you chose the post that you did and what has happened in your life since.
Participants can write about whatever you want in your new blog entries. However, for those who might need some help and inspiration to get started, here are some questions to consider:
Why did you pick this post? What kind of response did you get from readers in regards to your post? Has your perspective changed since the day you wrote your original post? Do you think you would still feel the same way if you were writing your post today? What have you learned about yourself, your family and your life since you wrote your original post?
For those new to Time Warp Tuesday, here is a quick recap of how it works:
1) Browse through your old blog entries to find one that fits the topic for the given week. The topic is shared at the end of the previous week’s “Time Warp Tuesday” post here on my blog (see above for next week’s topic).
2) Write a new blog post in which you introduce, link to and then reflect on your journey since you wrote the older blog post and put it up on your blog on Tuesday. Please include this link http://chicagobensons.blogspot.com/search/label/Time%20Warp%20Tuesdays in your blog entry, so your readers can find their way to my post with the list of other participants, in case they would like to read more or participate themselves.
3) Share the link to your new post here on Tuesday and then visit, read and comment on the other blogs.
4) After you have done all of these things, you are welcome to grab the code for the the Time Warp Tuesday button by clicking here and put it on your blog. The link will take you to a Google Doc where you can copy the code. If your browser does not allow access to your computer’s clipboard, you can use Ctrl-C for Copy and Ctrl-V for Paste, or use your browser’s Edit menu.
5) Check back here on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month to find out the new topic, theme or question for the next Time Warp Tuesday (I welcome your ideas and suggestions) and then return to Step 1 of this recap to participate.
Please let me know if you have any questions and I hope to see you back here in two weeks, on Tuesday, January 17 (the 3rd Tuesday of this month), when we’ll “do the time warp again!”
Thank you again for reading, commenting and participating in my Time Warp Tuesday blog hop. Link up below and click through to visit others who are doing the Time Warp! (If you have any trouble with Linky Tools, please share the link to your blog entry in the comment section.). Also, please don’t forget to comment on my post here, as I do not have a link to this (my own) post below, but I would still really appreciate your feedback. xoxo