There was no zombie apocalypse and I didn’t see one rouge asteroid penetrate earth’s atmosphere. December 21 passed and the world as we know it survived intact. Last December, I remember hearing the legend of the Mayan prediction of the end. I jokingly said that if indeed the world would end in a year, I needed to make some serious changes in my life. Little did I know I was making a prediction that would come true.
The first change I made after the New Year was to go back to church-again. I stopped going for several months and missed what I had found there. Encouragement from the pastor and the warm welcome back by members made it easy to return. After all when confronted with an end of the world scenario, prayer and faith seem the logical solution.
A lunch meeting with Jan early in year brought an unexpected new friendship. Our schedules made finding a date a challenge. We met along with her daughter Anna and laughed our way through most of lunch. We became fast friends. A love of writing was one of many things we found in common. I have written about this in several blog posts this year. Jan and her family are now a second family for me and a gift from 2012 for which I am truly grateful.
My diet and exercise programs needed a serious boost. I walked past the karate studio near my office many times and decided to finally check it out. In February, I started training and I am now a blue belt. I finally hit my goal of losing 100 pounds as the year went on. If the world was going to end, I wanted to be healthy and strong enough to fight and make a run for it if possible. After all, every end of the world movie has people survive who can run, jump, fight and look amazing doing it.
I love to write and wanted to find ways to improve. I decided to make a move from Blogger to WordPress for my blog and made it public. I found some great challenges during the year and my blog followers and views increased dramatically. Connections with many new writers during the year were an added benefit. I attended a Writer’s workshop at Montreat in the spring and renewed my commitment to writing on a regular basis. This fall my friend Jan and I went to Atlanta to see my favorite author Anne Lamott. She offers great advice and encouragement for writers.
Things at home (my marriage) had been declining for some time but I made the decision to stay and do what I could. My job was stressful but I loved my work. Friends, family, and writing kept me going. However, things changed quickly in the summer. The job I loved fell apart and I made one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make in a very long time. After much prayer, talking with my therapist and consulting close friends, I choose to leave my job without another job in site. I know in my heart it was the right decision. Within weeks of leaving my job, I made another hard choice. I left my marriage of five years.
While the world didn’t end in December, the world as I knew it ended in 2012. 2013 is a mystery. I registered for college and will sign up for my classes on Jan. 10th. I have no idea how that is going to work. I am 61 and haven’t been in school for over 40 years. I need to find a way to support myself and get health insurance without working full time and going to school. I work only 17 hours a week and pay almost my entire income to cover COBRA for health insurance. I fight the demons of feeling alone at times and feeling like a failure at others. I know there are people in my world who think I have taken a walk into insanity. There are moments when I feel very lost and unsure of what is happening. Some days I wake up, get out of bed, put one foot in front of the other, and see where life leads me.
Yet, for the most part, I feel happy. I have a sense that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. I have two amazing grown children who encourage me and support me. Jan and Anna make me laugh, let me cry, push me, and just let me be me. I have other friends who believe in me as well. And, in the middle of all of this, I pray and I trust God.
A blog challenge for 2013 is find one word to focus on through the coming year and incorporate that into your writing. I have several words that seem appropriate but the one word that keeps coming through is trust. It isn’t something that comes naturally for me. I learned a tremendous amount about trust in 2012; some of it bad and much of it good. I am going to embrace the challenge and put trust into my daily life- trust in God, my friends, my family and in myself. I survived end of the world in 2012 so welcome 2013. Let’s see what you have in store!
Happy New Year!!