Monday, December 22, 2014

my word for 2015

I think I've found my word(s) for 2015.

I was really unsure about them this year, so I did Susannah Conway's Find Your Word meditation, which I really enjoyed because it brought a different element of mindfulness to my choice this year. Added note, I loved her use of colouring to help unlock your choice. It was totally aligned with my whole love of art journal as an intentional meditation act.

I've chosen to go with forgiveness this year (with a side note of joy).

I've spent the past year nurturing an really negative self dialogue, beating myself up for not getting it all done and for failing to find balance. From the blog, to my daily mediation, to life as a mom and wife, to well, just pretty much anything. And it's time to throw it out the window and practice more self-kindness by letting go of the anger I feel towards my shortcomings.

I know, duh. But I'm totally struggling with it and I want 2015 to be a year that leads to a better sense of emotional wellbeing in my day to day life.

  • So I'm going to forgive myself for not being size 8 and the fact that I will never be size 8.
  • I'm forgiving the fact that I wasn't the mom I wanted to be during my son's first year (and consecutive years).
  • I'm forgiving myself for not doing the daily practice even though I knew it would make me happier.
  • Oh hell, I'm forgiving myself for a whole slew of things with the intention of setting up a gentler, less demanding "to do" list.

So yeah. Forgiveness because I think that this year I need to be kinder to myself and remember kindness in my daily interactions.


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

yulemas spirit?

It's beginning to sink in... finally. Yulemas is approaching, rather quickly and I admit that this year I'm feeling a bit off kilter about it.

Of course, part of that probably stems from the fact that I'm headed home this year, with a 1.5 year old in tow. Nothing says anxiety to me like flying for 6 hours with a rambunctious toddler!

Oh well. I'm working on Zen.

I'll let you know how it goes. Millions of people travel with kids, we should be able to do it too, right?

Another thing I've been chewing on a lot this year, is the whole grinchy feeling I have over Christmas in light of motherhood. I used to LOVE Christmas growing up. Sure the gifts were great, but I loved the songs, the lights, the colours, the food, the parties. But this year, I'm feeling a bit ambivalent about it all because I'm overthinking it in light of my own traditions and what I want Baby Faye to experience as holiday traditions.

I think I might be killing Yulemas for me this year because of it!

Gah! What is a pagan mama to do when she wants to celebrate the joy of the season, but isn't comfortable with all the "joy to the world, the lord has come" rhetoric? Particularly when she's sort on board with the lord has come, but just not that particular understanding of the lord. I mean... the lord is the lord is the lord kind of deal, but not really...  You know?

I just find myself feeling more at odds with the season this year than I ever have before, mostly because I keep thinking about how I am navigating the tension between my beliefs and those of the mainstream public. I have never been a minority and yet, this year in particular, I have been getting glimpses of what it might feel like to be part of larger minority groups in a sea of generally "understood" cultural norms. And I say that with the full understanding that it's totally ridiculous to even compare my "chosen" path to the imposed minority status placed on others. I just think that it's interesting that this year has really been about making me think/feel/attempt to loosely empathize with what others feel on a much larger scale.

My small scale woe is me, how do I deal with feeling left out of the conversation/teach my son about alternative identities or choices, Yulemas angst is so crazy stupid and privileged. But this past turn of the wheel has been humbling in it's insistence on teaching me to contemplate the othering experienced by choices outside of the mainstream in relation to the life lessons and values I want Baby Faye to grow up with an awareness of.

So yeah, Yulemas this year is definitely an interesting culmination point to a conversation that I am having with others and myself about privilege, sensitivity and openness in the choices we make and the way we talk about the idea of what is "normal" in society.

What does this mean for this season? Probably not much. I don't expect to find easy answers any time soon. But I know that I think it's important to think about, particularly in light of parenthood and creating meaningful memories and celebrations in a mixed faith home and diverse society.