Tuesday, January 22, 2013

resolving, again.

Last year I made some not 'new year resolution' resolutions. I wanted to be more intentional with my life and make more room for the good and less room for the bad.

So how did I do?

more reading - B. I certainly read more, but still not nearly enough.
more writing - I get a D. I blogged less. oops.
more exercise - B. I did exercise more. And loved it.
reinvestment in lapsed friendships - eh, C+? Taking it one by one I guess.
less McDonalds - proud to give myself a B here.
baby free time - ehhhh, a D+...
something new - OK, I did join MOPS, and take classes with Anna. That's a start, right?
more DIY - A+ We built Anna a play kitchen, I painted an ottoman and made her a doll house. Not bad.
less selling myself short - sure.
less worrying, more hoping, more enjoying, more grace, more peace - I think I'll give myself an A for effort.

Circumstances were undoubtedly better this year, but I've dealt with them better too.

Last year I needed to work on some basic emotional care-taking and attend to some insidious thought patterns. While this work needs to continue, I also need to build on it. Take next steps. The list doesn't look that different from last year, but the emphasis has shifted. I've been able to put more shape to my hopes and dreams and now have to muster the courage to realize them.

drum roll please...

1. more writing. The thing is, I write all the time. In my head that is. In the shower, lying in bed, I'm always writing. I compose blog posts and chapters to books, and I fail to write them down because as much as writing has always been a part of my life, I don't identify as 'a writer' and am scared to admit that I am one, scared of the expectations that come with that. But writing makes me happy so for my own sake, I need to carve out the time to do just this, just for myself. I have some plans.
2. more reading - I am always happier when I'm reading more.
3. more exercise - renew gym membership. simple.
4. reinvest in lapsed friendships - my work here is not done.
5. eat better/easier - a little planning goes a long way.
6. baby free time - my plans here dovetail with item #1 and include hiring a Mother's Helper, or equivalent.
7. something new - I have a few things in the works, plus I AM going to finally start that book club.
8. less selling myself short - refer to #1
9. less excuses. Just do it. All of it. Any of it.
10. and still, less worrying, more hoping, more enjoying, more grace and more peace.

Mostly more enjoying. I am blessed with a fantastic life. I plan on soaking up every single glorious minute of it, and forgiving myself when I don't.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

This house that is my home

It's been over 13 years since I last lived at home, in this house.

I don't feel like I live here anymore, exactly. But then I hear the linen closet door creak the same creak it always has and suddenly I'm 12 again. A sudden glimpse of something in my childhood room or the smell when I walk inside the door brings me right back again. I know exactly what to expect when I sit on a certain chair or walk into a room. That intimate familiarity with a house, a connection so comforting, so grounding.

I feel it when I find the fresh flowers waiting in my room every time I come home. When dad changes after work and mom irons the sheets. It's knowing that the tylenol is in the 'waffle iron cupboard' and instinctively stepping over where the cracks on the driveway used to be. It's expecting to find Carmella - our long gone cat - to be around the corner, or hiding under my bed. It's still being scared of the basement after dark, and wondering why a piece of furniture isn't where it was 15 years ago.

It's the contentment that descends with my plane and the peace that settles deep in my bones as I walk up the front steps. This house contains my history, it's the place in which I became me. I belong to that house, and it belongs to me.

I can remember pretty much all of the so-called mundane details of my childhood, an 8 track movie played on demand. But when I'm at home there is a soundtrack. When I'm home my memories are in HD.

Now Anna is at home with me and the house becomes my past, but our present. I watch her play with my old toys, dressing her doll in my doll clothes. She plays on new playground equipment but in the same park. I  teach her to play pinball and grandpa shows her air hockey. She runs through the sprinkler in the summer and sleds on the same hill in the winter. I watch her treading a path up and down the stairs to the family room that I have walked thousands of times, grateful for this simple gift, this continuity. I witness her making her own memories, memories reflecting mine, but shiny and new.

I used to tell my parents that I wanted to buy this house from them when I grew up. Circumstances have changed but the sentiment remains. It's a reflection of how happy I have been here, how happy they have made me. In this house that is my home.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Merry Christmas (card) 2012

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!

After a good six months of some formal Chief duties, a little research and plenty of moonlighting, Adam will be acting Chief Resident at the Seattle Veteran's hospital in January. We're hoping that the new year will also bring him an official job offer here in Seattle come July. Seattle has become our home in the last year and a half and you'd have to drag s kicking and screaming out of the Pacific Northwest. We are grateful every day for this beautiful city and the life we are building here - our church, our family, our friends. Sheri dreams about what is next while enjoying this gift of time at home with Anna who in all her two-ness keeps us busy, and guessing. She is sweet, affectionate, hilarious, defiant and completely crazy. We can only marvel in wonder at her.

Thanks for all your love, prayers and support. We are truly grateful for you.

Praying that peace, goodwill, with all abide this Holy Christmastide,

Adam, Sheri & Anna Johnson