Last year my phrase was Earn It!
I wish I could write a done and over with kind of a review for the last year’s phrase. I can’t though, for it is an on going process. For the rest of my life I will continue making an effort to earn the respect and regard of those who matter to me, while I ensure that other people earn my regard too. It is all too easy to slide down the slippery paths of the unearned the moment you get careless. Eternal vigilance!
I will, however, say a few things about the year gone by. I had decided not to go into an introspective journey back into the hazy lanes of 2013. But I forgot what the poet said about the plans of mice and men. Ever since I’ve woken up this morning, I have been going wandering off into the year that is about to slip away from us forever. It is time I acknowledged the things that made their deepest impact upon me last year.
Johnny’s sudden passing on brought the lesson of life’s fragility home to me as never before. I will never take life for granted again. I will never forget that everyone’s time on this earth is finite and transitory. I will never delude myself into thinking that my love can ever protect me from the pain of another’s going away. They must go when it is time for them to go. I will also not ever forget that when they go, they go home. I will always remember that the love you have for people doesn’t perish when they cross over. It remains, as alive, as vibrant and as soul- filling as it ever was.
The night I found that Johnny was no more, I was alone in a sterile hospital room, awaiting surgery in the morning. I still remember the screams which roused me at three in the morning. The family members of a patient who had the room next to mine began wailing and crying. By then I was exhausted with crying and had fallen into a numb, dry- eyed stupor.
The loud laments of these other people, who mourned their loved one, inexplicably set my teeth on edge. I didn’t feel any solidarity with them. There was no similarity between their sorrow and mine. I didn’t feel consoled by their grief. I dug my nails into my arm to stop myself from screaming hysterically. It was the longest hour of my life. But I lived through that night. Johnny would have been so proud of me.
I realized a few more things in the months that followed. Tears are a paltry expression of a sorrow as deep as Johnny’s passing away was to me. Moreover, what is it that I mourn? That I wont hear his voice at the other end of a brief International call? But he is the voice in my head. He talks to me all the time, how can that ever be taken away from me? As long as I live I will not forget the way he pronounced certain words.
He is surely happier where he is. Let me not disturb his well- earned peace by carrying on in a way that would make him let lose a few pithy Swahili expletives to hide that he is worried. He always said that he could make himself happy whenever he chose to- and that was very true. He could turn the most worrying, dismal moment around and have us giggling irreverently in seconds. He taught me to smile, and smile I will. He loved life so much; I must now live for two.
The year ended with happy news. My eldest one finished her graduation and got a job with a good company. She is to begin in the first week of January. 2013 has been a landmark year for her too. I pray that her 2014 brings her accolades. More than that, I hope it brings her the private, inner satisfaction which comes from knowing that you did a good job. May she learn pride in herself and to trust her abilities.
Now for the year that began a few hours ago. For 2014 my phrase is Step Out.
They say the only difference between stepping stones and stumbling blocks is the way you treat them. There are no stumbling blocks my path anymore; there are only stepping stones. There are two new things I have been working on for the past few months. Something within me has been stopping me from going ahead with them all this while; not anymore. I think it is time to set sail and leave the safe harbor.
When you cross a river by way of the stepping stones laid across it’s width, you take a risk. The stones are slippery with moss and the river swift. You may lose your footing. Yet you Step Out trusting in the Universe to guide you. You hand over the reigns to your inner being who knows well how to keep you balanced. Moreover, the river may not be as deep as you imagine it to be from the bank.
The far bank isn’t visible to you when you begin your journey. You have no idea if you will find a shady glade to rest in or a sticky, gooey mire to battle. Yet you leave the certainty of what you know and trust in your destiny. You don’t know where you will reach but you are prepared to deal with whatever comes. Something tells you it will for your good- one way or the other.
I am sure the cool water of the river will be refreshing. I might even sit on one of the stones in the middle of the river and dangle my feet in the water for a while. I might let her sing her eternal songs to me as I watch the quick fish dart within her depths. After all, the Destination isn’t the point; the Journey is.
Do you have a phrase for 2014- a phrase which will help you realign yourself whenever you feel you’ve steered away from your course? I recommend the process highly. It works pretty well. There is no guilt of unfulfilled resolutions because you are selecting a compass, not a to- do list. If you’ve been reading me in the past, you’ll know what I am not frightfully fond of to- do lists. They give me the creeps.
May this new year bring you many opportunities for discovering yourself. May you gift yourself the chance to go out on the limb and taste the sweetest of the fruit. May you give yourself the permission to Step Out of your own way.
Wish you and your loved ones a very happy MMXIV!
Step out.. If only most of us can identify stumbling blocks and stepping stone. I think slipping down is better than the fear of falling down, we gain some wisdom. May the supreme force grace you with blessings and success in your life. My phrase for 2014 will be ” I love myself”
Thank you Vaishnavi. I hope this year will give you many opportunities to demonstrate your love for yourself. 🙂
I’m a simpleton and I do not worry to tell anyone that I do not fumble for resolutions.
Like a river, I just keep getting along.
No harm I can borrow your phrase – its a nice idea indeed.
Like Vaishnavi said, slipping down is better than the fear of falling down.
Happy New year to you
Sundar, You are welcome to borrow my phrase. You are like the river? Ever new and never changing? The same at every point on its path? Wow! Share with me your secrets someday. I would love to learn from you…
Happy 2014 to you and your family!
Wishing you the very best, Dagny. I’m sure the world will be so much richer for your decision!
You are a dear friend for saying so! Thank you Corinne. You’ve no idea how deeply you’ve impacted my life. Bless you!
Wow, those phrases are redolent with meaning. I haven’t thought about it but I guess, “Stay calm, Stay positive, Stay healthy!” is what I aspire to do in the coming year/s!
Wish you the fulfillment of all your aspirations Rachna. Happy new year to you and your loved ones!
I loved how you define years, Dagny! Wishing you and your daughter the very best in 2014! Stay blessed always! ♥
Thank you and wish you the same Shilpa. It was so good of you to help out with finding a safe place for her to stay. God bless you and your loved ones. <3
I like the phrase ‘Step Out’. In some ways it reminds me of my theme for last year which was ‘out of my comfort zone’. 🙂 A phrase for this year? Well, there are actually 2 words I’m hoping will define 2014 — ‘Open’ and ‘Live’. To be more open and to live my life fully without regrets.
Happy New Year and I hope 2014 has the very best in store for you…
Your theme for last year ties in perfectly with mine of this year. Step Out essentially refers to stepping out of the comfort zone… no matter how debilitating. Your two words for this year are illuminating. I hope there wont be even a shadow of regret in your life from this moment on. In this regard, I have created an adage that gives me comfort. Don’t do it and if you do, don’t regret (or feel guilty about) it. That sort of cover a lot of relevant ground. 😀
Wish you and your family a year full of joy too. Thank you for coming by… 🙂
Dagny, I love your phrase Step-Out. It’s so empowering. Wish you and yours a wonderful 2014, much love and many blessings. Hugs.
Suzy, Thank you for your love and blessings. Ever since you’ve reviewed my blog, I feel a deep connect with you. Irrational as it may seem, I feel as you I have the liberty to demand blessings from you; as if you were responsible for in in some way. 😛
It’s a wonderful feeling. 😀
Wish you and your and beautiful year in 2014 too! Hugs…! <3
Step Out! It’s so relevant, I wish I can add this to my list too! Wish you a very happy new year and in your stepping out endeavor!
Thank you so much Nabanita! I hope the new year brings you many challenges which will prove to you that your strength exceeds them. Thank you for coming by. 🙂
Mine has always been the same Dagny! “There is nothing in life that cannot be laughed at” 🙂
Well, it seems to have served you well Suresh. I don’t agree with you entirely though.
There are things that are reverent to one. To laugh at them isn’t likely to win you friends, or keep them. 🙂
a beautiful piece!!! Step-out is such a powerful positive phrase, like a puberty moment of the soul. I am so glad to be able to witness it from afar. Who is Johnny–a metaphor, a dream or a real person? Perhaps he is all of that and I guess we all have Johnnys whom we lose and some perhaps have not grieved that loss fully. A powerful post…a treasure.
Johnny… Johnny is my best friend Bhavana. Read about him here: http://serenelyrapt.wordpress.com/2010/02/13/johnny-will-you-be-my-valentine/.
As I said to you the other day, I have been incredibly blessed in my friends. Hugs.
It’s so well written and you are armed with self-belief in your journey, so nothing can stop you in your quest. I am sure he is always with you. Wish you the very best in 2014. Keep faith.
Thank you immensely Vishal. Your words give me heart and bolster up my faith. Bless you!
Dagny, your phrase is so close to mine yet the journey is so different. Living through pain and emerging the better for it with grace is rare. Step out is just what I feel too, out of my comfort zone, out of my own way, out of the boundaries I had set for myself and so on. That’s why I chose Fearless. I am glad to have met you in the new year which says a lot about how good my new year already is. 😀
Swapna, I am immensely pleased to have met you too. I spent many hours on your blog yesterday, enjoying myself. You not only write well but you write on topics that resonate with me. I wonder what more this year will bring.
Love and light to you and yours!