A lot of people make New Year’s resolutions. In the past I promised myself I would lose weight, always say “thank you” and take other steps for self-improvement. Not anymore. As I enter the second calendar year a widow I turn more to bucket lists, challenging myself to explore my outer and inner world.
Here are two external experiences I want to try this year to test my bravery and overcome fears: take a zip line tour and try out scuba diving in a local river. I have already found a girlfriend who wants to try zip lines, too, and we’ll give it a go – I’m terrified of the thought of hanging off a narrow wire and flying through the air, high above the ground. There are a lot of pro dive shops here, so I’ll choose one which offers an introductory scuba excursion – again, I’m afraid of going so deep into the water that I have to rely on an air tank.
My inner world also requires some attention. I find I am becoming restless with solitude. Formerly I seemed to need almost an entire day of seclusion to regain the necessary energy to engage with others. Sunday was often that day, and if I had another activity that took up most of that day, I struggled the next several days, seeking silence and sleep. Now I don’t want an entire day, or even a full day – I’ll go out bicycling on my own or call up a few friends. This shift is a good thing; it indicates the way I present myself in the world is becoming more aligned with my reality. It is not so exhausting because I am not pretending to be all right when I’m not; I’m really all right so much of the time now.
I enjoy writing posts for this blog most of the time, but other times I struggle for appropriate material. While I am willing to share a fair amount about myself, I do not want to cross the line by writing about others in a way that makes them uncomfortable. Thus I refer to my beloved stepdaughters, but I try not to reveal anything private. As I step further into 2018 I need to find a way to continue to post in a way which meets both my and my readers’ expectations.
Time with friends is something I enjoy more than ever – individuals, team mates and neighbors of both genders. It feels good, albeit a bit scary, to step out with someone with whom I have a budding friendship. Life demands different characteristics to come to the forefront in different situations. Humor, commitment, empathy, judgment and competitiveness all have their place in my world, but sometimes I need to back it down and other times step it up. Upsy-daisy!