2016 was a year of loss for me.  From losing a beloved Uncle to losing David Bowie and Alan Rickman, Prince and Gene Wilder.  To my impending job loss and to losing our election hopes.  And so many other losses in between.  I thought we might make it out of 2016 with Princess Leia still alive, but alas, there was a disturbance in the Force as first, she died and then her mother died in grief.  And even then with all that loss already piled up, 2016 had it’s last say by stealing away beloved Father Mulcahy in it’s waning hours.  The changing over from 2016 to 2017 almost felt like a relief to me.  We got through that year and now it’s time to put it behind us and start over.  2017 is the year for new beginnings.

My word for 2017 on UnfoldAndBegin.com

I’ve seen people post about their word of the year before.  I’ve read their posts and saw how that word carried with them throughout the year.  I thought that with what is going on in my life, that this would be a good year to start that practice.  Focus on one word, make sure that all that I do during the year flows from and comes back to that one word.  More on that later.

New Beginnings Are Needed

This will be a year of change for me as I prepare to lose my job.  That sounds so odd.  Most people don’t have any time to prepare.  I had five months, now it’s down to 82 days.  Time to begin life over as I transition from my 9 to 5 (or was that 9 to 7?) job into my new life as a freelance writer.  Time to remake myself.  I remember telling someone once that my aspiration was to live in yoga pants all day long….I guess that becomes reality on March 25th.

In order to prepare for life without a regular paycheck, my husband and I had some hard decisions to make about where we would live.  Eventually, we’ll make our way to Florida, but for now, my mother still needs care (and still refuses to move into a nursing home.)  Which means, we made the decision to move in with her.  Hard decisions to make, but selling our condo will also allow us to save money.  Selling our condo will also force us to downsize, which will free us from the burden of taking care of so many things.  It’s something that I’ve done once before and I have to admit, it really freed up a lot of space for me, not just home-wise, but emotionally, too.

It’s time to rewrite my career….in more ways than one!  Writing, being a writer, is something that’s been a part of me since I can remember.  It somehow got pushed aside in the desire to “make a living” but now even the meaning of that has changed to me.  What is making a living if not following your dream?

2016 was a year filled with back pain.  It affected every aspect of my life.  The low back pain was a constant reminder of the car accident from 2015.  Although my Chiropractor helped me to regain a lot of my flexibility, it’s done nothing to relieve the pain.  I have an appointment with a new Doctor in January, one who specializes in spinal surgery.  It’s time to find out what the next steps will be in hopes of being able to again stand and walk without severe pain.

My Word

All of these changes have led me to my word for 2017 — renewal.  It’s about taking care of myself.  It’s about reconnecting with who/what I’ve always wanted to be.  It’s also about taking the time to care for myself so that I can stand and walk pain-free….or at least with the normal pain a 55-year-old can expect.  But it’s also about keeping what is meaningful and not cluttering up our lives with things.  It’s about finally having time to renew relationships, read for pleasure, and hopefully being able to get back out and enjoy hikes and maybe some walks on the beach.  Renewal is about simple changes, it’s about being able to unfold and begin again.

I’d love to hear if you’ve picked a word or have a theme for how you’re going to live in 2017?