Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Reflecting on 2014, Family-building, and Possibilities

With the new year on the horizon, I've been in a little bit of a panic. I am no stranger to anxiety and panic attacks, and while this hasn't risen anywhere near to the level of panic attack (with work over the years, those appear to have mostly been dealt with), the anxiety is nevertheless present. I just cannot believe 2014 is over! Where did it go? I've been feeling like I must not have done anything with it because it barely seems to have existed! 2013 was by far one of the worst years of my life - I lost a baby and my dad, among others. I remember being at the end of 2013 and thanking God for both the blessings 2013 had brought (my sweet, silly kitty, for one), and that it was OVER. But this new year's eve, I feel so desperate for MORE of 2014! 
Then someone reminded me of some of the great pictures I'd posted through the year, and I decided to go back through them and make a collage for myself of a handful of amazing moments and memories from the year. I am SO glad I did!
Of course this year wasn't perfect. I lost a grandfather. And amazing experiences don't just fall into your lap (98% of the time). You have to work for them, persist, and be ready for the unexpected. That's exactly what I did. At the beginning of the year, I had several goals: Become a life coach by taking and finishing the UC Davis program (done), incorporate my business (done), become a public speaker (not yet), finish a first draft of my first novel (not yet), put our house on the market so we can by our dream home (done), pick an adoption agency (done), finish our adoption agency application (not yet), plan and take a 3-4 week trip overseas (done), visit my husband's side of the family (done), work on a few close friendships (ongoing), and lose 15 more pounds or 1 more clothing size (LOL).
You can see that some goals were met while others weren't. To be fair, though, it was a bit ambitious. Probably unrealistic. But OMG, what an amazing year it led to! I made incredible friends in my coaching class, and got to see things out in the world that so overwhelmed me, I was overcome with tears of joy while in their presence. No wonder I want MORE of 2014!
On the one hand, my list, as a set of goals, was unrealistic and overwhelming. People ask me why I haven't made more progress on the adoption paperwork - why I seem to be putting it off. Some of it might be that I'm procrastinating from a fear of failure, but honestly, it's because when it comes to building my family, well, I have more control over the outcome of other things. Admittedly, we need a better support community for us to move forward through the adoption process, so that's something I'll be looking for in 2015.
But if, instead of viewing my overwhelming, unrealistic list as one of goals, we view it as a list of possibilities, then WOWZERS! Anything can happen!
People are different, and while some do well with goals, some of us, including myself, thrive under a looser construct. We need space for creativity and bounce back faster from the unexpected when we aren't constricted by what we see as boundaries and rules that our Gremlins tell us we should be following and make us feel bad if we don't.
My resolution for 2015 is this: Instead of goals, I will have possibilities. Because that's really what they are anyway.
Are you more motivated by goals or possibilities? How did you do with them last year? How do you think this applies to building your family or coping with infertility?

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