I’m three days late, but I wanted to take some time and reflect on the year 2011. It’s long gone now, but still deserves some time of remembrance. Any blogger worth their weight in blogging ability has already accomplished this feat, however, it’s me we’re talking about here.
I began this post a couple of days ago with the best of intentions, but I was (and still am) having trouble getting my thoughts nailed down to make it coherent, but alas, I’ll try.
I’m experiencing mixed emotions about the new year, and about saying good-bye to the old. This is a new phenomenon for me. I usually wake up on January first of whatever year it happens to be, and go about my usual life. Just another day. But this January 1st, 2012, I found myself at a crossroads. There’s a song by the Bellamy Brothers where one line says, “he’s an old hippie and he don’t know what to do, should he hang on to the old, should he grab on to the new.” Oh how I can relate.
Last January there was a movement if you will, instead of resolutions, choose a word for the year. A word that will define you. A word that you will focus on during the year. Like hope or faith or happiness or fitness. My friend Suzanne asked me what my word was. I took a while to think, and finally I chose the word create. I wanted to create great writing. I wanted to create a home for J-Dub and myself in our new country dump, I wanted to create a wonderful garden, a chicken coop, so many new things.
How little did I know that with creation comes change or perhaps change begets creation. But I can look back now and affirm, create was my word.
We lost my dad to a heart attack in February and I began to create a life of only memories. Whether through facebook or blog comments or email or phone calls, we spoke daily. I’m thankful for technology, for through that our relationship grew closer and we knew each other better than ever. Creating a new life without him has been hard for me.
Less than a month after burying my dad, J-Dub and I packed our horse trailer with boxes and furniture and moved to a place outside of town. A place that needed (and still does) a lot of work. We had spent the previous winter attempting to create a home for ourselves along with a plethora of mistakes, problems and money that come with home improvements. Moving is life changing and not knowing where the dadgum lightbulbs are kept is more than irritating. Shortly after moving in, like 4 days, I got a box of little chicks in the mail and my life was changed forever! I spent the spring and summer, raising those babies and adjusting to the country life with snakes in the front yard, water wells breaking, drought, wild fires and wind. And with wind, lots and lots of dust.
In May, I felt like I was losing my ever loving mind. I believed Satan had come in and taken control of my body. I felt like a raging lunatic, and then while on a trip visiting my dad’s grave for Memorial Day weekend, I discovered the cause of my angst. I was pregnant. So the summer was spent in shock and adjustment. And the fall was spent in shock and adjustment. And now that we are three weeks away from giving birth, I’m still in disbelief and adjusting. Someone told me in a comment on this blog that God gives us nine months to prepare for childbirth. I’m here to tell you, I probably could be a pretty good elephant because nine months isn’t enough time for me.
Although I desired to create great writing, and a wonderful home, and new and beautiful things in 2011, I never would have fathomed that I would create a daughter. What a change. What a creation. What a scary experience.
Plans for building a new fence and putting up a barn were replaced with painting a nursery and choosing a name. A whole new dimension has been added to my life. God has given me a great task. He has chosen me to be the mother of a little girl who I worry I won’t do right by.
With this great task ahead, I find myself fearing the new year. Afraid of what it holds. I find myself walking by sight rather than faith, fearful of the next step. And the one after that. And the one after that.
My 2011 was a year of adjustment. Lots of changes took place, the kind of changes that rate high up on the stress level list. So why don’t I want to move on? As I ponder, I decide it must be the familiarity of the old and the fear of the new. I am embarking on this new year, expecting more changes and I’m frightened that the struggles I faced in 2011 will follow me into the new year.
I’ve been weepy the last two days and it appears this day is no different. My present prayer is that my sorrow will be turned to joy, my worry will be changed to rejoicing.
Like the old hippie, should I hang on to the old or should I grab onto the new?
If I look to the scriptures, I am instructed to remember the days of old, remember what God has done for me, how He has carried me through, and then press forward to what is ahead, walk by faith, finish the race, and trust in the Lord.
Hang on or grab onto? I’ll try to do both.
And so I go.
Having never met you nor your Dad, Angel, I ‘see’ your Dad in this post. Especially when you bring this post a close.
You may cling to the stress of the previous year because it came and went. You made it through – and though it may have been stressful at the time, you now know how it turned out. Whereas this newest journey – (dare I say, challenge) – is still unknown. Where there exists an unknown fear can root.
Keep on keepin’ on, Angel. The unknown will be full of wonderful surprises, many smiles and new life experiences. Your daughter will be so much and more – even during the most challenging of days/nights.
My prayer for you is strength and renewal of faith.
Happy New Year to you and Jason. I know your new year 2012 will have so many blessings you will not be able to choose one that stands out at the end of 2012. Becoming a mother is where God gives us all our blessings each day. My son is 29 and I am still blessed each day. Just take one day at a time and don’t fret over the unknown…God will do all your worrying for you…just turn all your fears over to him. My grandmother told me once to quit digging up my flowers. Until I learned to give all my worries to God and not take them back did I understand what she was telling me. God does a much better job of taking care of things than I do. I still tend to plant the seed, water, water, water and when I see the seedling coming out of the ground…dig it up and start over. Just don’t give up…God is good…ALL THE TIME> Blessing to you and your new family in 2012
Angel, I know this year is going to bittersweet for you. I know the upcoming birth of Emma makes you miss dad even more. But don’t you fret, because he’s part of you and he’s going to be part of her. Being a mom is scary. You have this perfectly beautiful little life that depends completely on you. You’re going to make some mistakes and you’re going to have some regrets but in the end we all do the best we can and hope it’s enough. I know you’re going to do a great job! 2012 is a chance for new beginnings, new hopes, new dreams, & new memories. So I agree… let’s grab onto the new but let’s never forget what brought us here. I love you!
If I were to write a comment, it would be exactly what all three of these wise women above. said! God chose you and Jason as Emma Kate’s parents because He knows what is in your heart. Trust in Him and His word and you will be fine. Not to say you might make a few mistakes (we are human, you know). I believe it was Maya Angelou who said “when we know better, we do better” ! The best piece of advise I could ever offer a new parent, is to tell your child you love them every day! Saying that makes up for a whole lot of mistakes 🙂 My thoughts and prayers are with you during the next few days and weeks as your prepare for this new beginning. Until next time … Donna H.
You do both! You hang onto the old…….and you grab onto the new!
And, why????? for Pete’s sake would you even imagine, much less worry that you wouldn’t do right by your little girl? You will absolutely and completely be the best mama ever! I can’t wait to see you hold YOUR OWN BABY in your arms! I can’t wait to watch you be a Mother…..and not just the daughter, sister and auntie that you are now! YOU WILL be the best mama in the whole world! Emma Kate just doesn’t know yet how lucky and blessed she is to have been given YOU for her Mommy….and Jason for her Daddy! She doesn’t know it yet…..but, I sure do!!!!!!!!