Friday, January 25, 2013

winter woes

the last week (and even two) have brought a stretch of cold weather that e and i haven't faced in all of our five years here. it's been bru.tal.

over the past few winters, i've often found myself proud of how i've handled this season. i have come to find a happiness in the silence, the cold, the calm. and more than anything, i have become stronger solely because of these frozen conditions. withstanding new england winters wasn't just something i thought i could never do, it was something everyone who knew me was sure i wouldn't survive. but there's nothing like a little lack of faith to give you some motivation...

however, seeing that it's only january, my stubbornness is pretty much gone and i'm about to beg for mercy. our spring break to vieques in february can't come soon enough and sometimes, in the morning, walking through the city to get to my office by the water, it's unclear if i'll actually make it to that week...or spring.

i  know by now where new englanders - particularly those in boston - get their edge. this winter chill that's taken over the town can creep up in you, through your mouth, take over your lungs and send that cold rush right to your heart. to survive it, you can't steel yourself, it'll only turn that thing to stone. you have to accept it, take it in and wrap it up in the warmth you've carried with you since those last days of summer.

Monday, January 7, 2013

self portrait.

If I knew then what I know now, I would never have wasted even a single minute doubting my path. It may be human nature to question and doubt, but the older I get, the less I worry about anything. I can see life unfolding in divine order. And even in times of the greatest turmoil, I can stop, get still, and see with utter clarity: This, too, shall pass.

Because everything always does. Until finally, we do. 

No matter what you're struggling through -- no matter the pain or anguish -- you can go inside behind your mind and observe it happening to you. Whatever it is, it isn't you. You are the observer.
When you come to know this, you realize that even though the canvas of your life is painted with daily experiences, behaviors, reactions, and emotions, you're the one controlling the brush. 

What a wonder! It would have been nice to know this at 21. I could have saved myself a lot of heartache and self-doubt. But to fully understand, at any age, that you are the artist of your own life -- and can use as many colors and textures as possible (and erase when necessary!)... now, that's a revelation.

- Oprah Winfrey in her op-ed in the Huffington Post

this thought by Oprah is a great reminder to me today, this year and pretty much always. i feel that i'm fortunate to have gained great insight at a young age about how special and fun life is - even when it feels hard, sad, unfair or just plain tough. i truly look at every day as a blessing that holds great opportunity. i've always loved looking back and connecting dots that show a clear path to where i am now (most of those dots i was never able to see at the time), but over the past few years i've challenged myself to enjoy looking forward as well. these days, it's no longer a challenge, as these thoughts and day dreams of my future tend to flow freely.

i spent a lot of 2012 thinking about how far i'd come in so many ways and it was such fun thinking about how i'd gotten here. as the year rounded out and i was approaching my 30th birthday i started to reflect on where i was going in a very different way than i ever had before. i thought about what i started out to do in my life - personal and professional - and i assessed my progress thus far. there were times when i wondered if i'd strayed from my path or even, in more intimate moments with myself, abandoned the whole thing altogether. but i closed out the year and my third decade without a doubt in my mind that i'd done good.

i have many goals/resolutions for 2013. as i've mentioned before, i like to keep a list of no-brainers in the round-up to be sure and stick to good habits. but i've created a few that will no doubt bring some fun, wisdom and challenges as well. but my greatest resolution is not only to not doubt my path in 2013, wherever it may take me, eric, my career or our home. but to also not spend so much time worrying about it. i aim to use my colors wildly and freely and, as Oprah suggests, erase if needed.

here's to another great year!