Vision Versus Reality #2017 #2018

In January 2017, in preparation for the year ahead, I created and shared my first Vision Board. You can see the post about it here. As regular readers will know, 2017 didn’t quite go the way I had envisioned.  You can’t plan for the kind of disruption that comes from your mother getting a brain tumour. Life goals and good intentions go out of the window as every energy is directed towards the most pressing – and distressing – of circumstances. I rest my case.

My 2017 Vision Board reflected various aspects of my life on which I wanted to focus during the year; healthy lifestyle, relationships and family, work/life balance, creativity/creative writing,  travel – that kind of thing. In the end, by far the most important aspect was… family. We, my brother, sister-in-law, their children and I, pulled together as a family like never before. As the ties with our mother severed through her illness and death, the ones which bound us together strengthened immeasurably.  That was an incredible positive from last year. And set against all the sadness, the weary work of clearing down our mother’s life, those strengthened ties have been an overwhelming joy, and by far the best thing to emerge from the last 12 months.

At the start of 2017, I also had some themes for the year ahead: Health, Inspiration, Renewal, Social, Creativity, Love.  The two which resonate most with me as I look back at the year are Inspiration and Love. For all the difficulties and challenges which bumbled along over the decades, but don’t seem at all important any more, I see my mother as an inspiration to the kind of life I want to live in the years to come. For various reasons, her life changed course in her mid-fifties, and she made the very most of those last 28 years or so. I can think of no good reason not to take the very same approach myself, to the next however many years of life I get.  And love… of course. How can you care for your mother in the last weeks of her life without experiencing an overload of love. Frustration, pain, despair, anxiety; all the above, yes. But overwhelmingly, you experience… love.

This year I’ve broadened out my themes a little – you can see. I make no secret of the fact that after giving the last year to my mother and her passions and priorities, I’m looking forward to reclaiming my life.

To help keep me on-track, there are some Acid Test questions:

  • Is what I’m doing/eating helping me to become more healthy?
  • Is what I’m doing/eating helping me to get closer to my life-goals?
  • Is what I’m doing/eating aligned with my personal values?
  • Is what I’m doing/eating making me feel happy and positive about myself and about life?

I’m the first to admit, I’m not perfect – a long way from it. But I need to do better, hence those tricky questions.  I need to recover some of the mojo which powered me through an incredible 18 months of weight-loss and health improvement and get back on track with all that business. I want to reawaken my creative brain and I need to regroup, socially, professionally and personally.  It feels like a tall order at the moment, I confess.

I’m asking the universe for a break – no more all-consuming crises this year please.  Though if they come, they come, of course. But in the meantime, I’m going to set off along the path, the one I marked out a year ago, a little later than intended, and I’m going to give it my very best.

15 thoughts on “Vision Versus Reality #2017 #2018

  1. Wrapping you in love Julie. I am sure that sparks will guide you as you explore different ideas and ‘what if’s’. No pressure needed, as you are lovely, just as you are. You have climbed a mountain. ❤

  2. Hope 2018 brings all that you wish for and some lovely unexpected life experiences along th way.
    Love, light and peace.

  3. Your 2017 was so tough, Julie, and I’m glad the new year opens with insight into the heart of your journey, which is surely the incredible power of love. It seems that despite the sadness of your loss, there is much to look forward to. Be gentle with yourself and I’m certain you will meet your goals. ❤

    1. Thank you, Diana. I do feel positive about the year ahead, though we (my brother and I) are still wading through the dismantling of our mother’s life. We’re approaching a whole slew of anniversaries at the moment and we’d hoped to have the logistics out of the way by now. We were over-optimistic, so it seems; but life is about progress, not perfection, isn’t it? And there is progress – and positivity too. So it’s ok.

  4. Reading in reverse order of publishing, I’m cringing a bit that you ask the universe for a break and in response, it gives you gallstones and liver damage. “Unfair,” I cry! And yet, the harsh, cruel ball of clay continues to turn, impassive and cold in its celestial orbit. Feel free to kick dirt clods when you walk. The world deserves it for treating you so poorly.

    1. I like the way you are peeling back the layers of my blog ☺️. And yes… it has certainly been an ‘interesting’ year. But there have been good things too, one notable, but which must remain ‘off blog’. I’m just glad the whole gallstones thing didn’t make its presence felt a few months earlier. At least I was able to give my mum all the time she needed, without distraction. When it started to surface, I didn’t recognise the potential seriousness of the problem. (I notice I wrote about pain and discomfort on my trip to Leipzig, but presumed it to be due to stress.) So it continued to prod me, harder and harder, until I was forced to pay attention. I confess to being a little troubled that I have traipsed off to doctors on all sorts of pretexts in the past, when little or nothing was wrong, yet when something goes properly awry, I somehow managed to ignore it for months!

      1. If it makes you feel any better (do you believe in schadenfreude?) I had two emergency room visits that turned out to be for specious and non-existent problems. As a result, I might be afraid to go when something serious does come along simply because of my unfortunate history. Err on the side of check-it-out, if you want to stay on this side of the grave marker.

        1. It’s a risk, that you get branded a hypochondriac. But I learned from the gallstones experience and would definitely agree with you. The only downside is that 3 or 4 hours you have to give up to the ER/A&E process.

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