Happy New Year! I'm reflecting on 2018 as I make plans for 2019 and I wanted to share some things I learned over the past year.
1. I like educating. Wow! Didn't see this one coming! My mother is a teacher and I watched her spend countless hours of overtime and watched her work her butt off for no recognition. I NEVER wanted to be a teacher. This year I realized I do love educating people, just not in the traditional way. I love teaching someone how to style their hair the way they have been wanting to but just didn't have the right technique. I love showing someone how a product can dramatically change the condition, texture and overall look of their hair. I love teaching, I just never thought I did.
2. It's ok to spend time and money on yourself. Being a single mom, sacrifice has become my middle name. Any mom will absolutely give up all their time, money, energy, and sanity to provide things for their kids. Last year, I realized something had to give. I started scheduling time for myself and including a fund for myself in my budget. I get massages. I read. I get occasional pedicures. I window shop. I make time to watch one of those Nicholas Sparks movies and have a good cry. And you know what? My kid never even noticed! He never went without food or clothing or electricity. He never went without quality time spent with me. He never had to look out from an event he was participating in and wonder why I wasn't there. I was able to keep on doing all the things as a mom that I needed and wanted to do. But I FELT BETTER! My tank was full, my self love was high, I felt confident and relaxed. I am a better, more patient, more quality mom when I take the time and money to take care of myself.
3. Scheduling is NOT bad! Most of my life, I have admitted, sometimes shamefully sometimes defiantly, that YES, I am one of THOSE people. The one that schedules and has too many planners and isn't very spontaneous because she has to check her calendar. It was always just a quirky thing about me. This year, I realized that it's not quirky, it's a very awesome trait to have! I would never be able to get everything done that falls to me to take care of if I was not one of THOSE people. Thanks to scheduling like I do, I rarely forget where I'm supposed to be. I don't have to call my massage therapist in a panic because I can't turn my head to hear that she can't get me in for a week because I have a set appointment every other week. I never have to wonder when the last time I got my oil changed was because it's there in black and white. Sure I may have too many planners ( currently 7) but it is a system that works for me and I can confidently start my month, week, and day because I know what I need to be doing for each and every hour.
4. I love to read. Ok, I knew this before, I didn't learn it in 2018. But I was surprised to see that in 2019 I read 113 books. Goodreads is an online bookshelf site. In January I signed up for a reading challenge. This challenge tracks how many books you finish from January 1 to Dec 31. Reading is my happy place. I am a fast reader and average 1-2 books per week. I usually spend about 45 minutes to 2 hours a day reading.
5. Everyone you meet, there is a reason. I've been trying online dating. (I have no idea what I was thinking-and no luck yet) While I have yet to meet the man of my dreams, let me tell you who I have met! *A person in a similar situation as me. He has become my feedback diary. We vent, tell our minutia to each other and can be extremely open with each other, no harm no foul. * A long lost friend. Someone I was close to in my teenage years but lost touch with. We have reconnected and while we have no interest in dating, it's amazing to have someone in my life who knew and accepted me then and knows who I am and accepts me now. * A soldier who is currently deployed. The worry over his safety is easily outweighed by the time he carves out to talk to me, although it is sometimes very little. My support and respect for him and the people like him who sacrifice things everyday that we take for granted has never been higher. * A friend of a friend. Someone who runs in the same social circles I do, but for whatever reason we never met until recently. Someone who is so much like me in personality it blows my mind a little. All of these meetings were by chance, or fate, or a God thing. All of these people have added to my life and taught me lessons about myself and how humans relate to one another. It is my hope that I have in some way impacted their lives as strongly as they have impacted mine.
I hope that 2019 teaches me more, and I am headed into the new year more aware of what I want, what I'm willing to do to get it, and how I can help people along the way.
Cheers to the New Year, I can't wait to enjoy it with you!