Leaving 2016 in the past feels like a bit of relief, considering it was definitely the hardest year of my life. It was painful to enter that New Year without my baby in my arms. I ached to go back to 2015 and have my baby over and over again. I missed him all the time. The grief from burying Max, postpartum depression, panic attacks, another miscarriage, and discovering my own genetic problem causing our infertility filled this last year with a lot of heartbreak. But like all hard things, that heartbreak brought me to my knees time and again and I grew closer to my Savior than I have ever been. For Tyler and I, our marriage became sturdier and we loved more fiercely than we ever have. It was hard, but it was worth getting through. I am a better person with a stronger testimony and more faithful than I have ever been because of the trials of 2016.
So, now it's 2017, and for the first time in 5 years we are entering a new year not trying conceive. My hopes for this year are not circling around getting pregnant, and that has been hard to process. Because of my balanced translocation, there is no way to know how many more losses we'd endure before conceiving a healthy baby, and we aren't ready to test that. But we're also not in a place financially to pursue adoption, yet. So, it feels like we are at a bit of a standstill, and that has really had me feeling heartache this last week. Every year since we started this journey I have had the hope that "this will be the year," that we would finally bring home a baby, so to begin this new year without that hope feels strange.
Like I'm always telling all of you, I've also been trying to remember that this is still a good life. I've been trying to focus on something different- a new hope(s) for this year. And this is what I've come up with:
Improve my spirituality - There is ALWAYS room for improvement when it comes to my relationship with God. I want to dedicate more time to personal scripture study and meditation this year.
WRITE MORE - I need to finish my book! Yes I have been working on a book this last year, like I said I would, but I need to get serious about finishing it. So, I'm setting myself a timeline to follow and goals to get it done.
Maintain a daily exercise routine - Fitness is as critical to my mental health as my meds are. My schedule got out of whack with the holidays and I know that has a lot to do with my recent dip in my depression. A daily dose of the gym will help me feel happier about life.
Serve more - I definitely spent much more time trying to serve others in 2016, and I want to continue that this year. Organizing service projects in honor of Max did my mama heart so much good and kept him alive, for me. I want to find more creative ways to charitable in 2017. (So, keep me in mind and hit me up with service project ideas!)
Try to be more organized - Honestly, I am an extremely disorganized person. I don't know why! My mom always had her crap together, but I just don't. Things get messy real quick in my life. Working from home is awesome, but it can also be confusing trying to keep work and home responsibilities separate. I really want to try to keep a work and cleaning schedule this year. I'm taking on a second job, starting this week, and I need to manage my time better (so I'm not working or folding laundry all night long!)
Maybe you are also feeling a little hopeless about the new year. Maybe disappointments in 2016 have you feeling down. Maybe life just isn't what you thought it might be by now. Trust me, I know that feeling. I encourage you to take time this week, to plan achievable goals for yourself this year. Make an effort to be positive and make changes in your life that will help you to be happy. Read more. Pray more. Love more. Travel more. SLEEP MORE (hi, that's for me). Do more things for your own good, and for the good of others.
CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY, because THIS IS STILL A GOOD LIFE.
Happy 2017. Go make stuff happen.