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I love the start of a new year. It's filled with such hope and excitement. That is after I overcome anxieties about what the future may bring, based on what I've experienced in the past. Setting personal goals in the midst of marriage and four special needs children has been quite challenging and defeating at times.
For over a month now, I've been reflecting back to when I was at my very best and how I can arrive there again. It was the year I started dating my husband. I was in my senior year of college. I was exercising daily. I was eating healthy. I was at my smallest size and truly felt beautiful inside and out. I was a live in nanny to one of the professors at the college I was attending full time.
Life was stressful no doubt. My sister was deathly ill with no recovery in sight. Preparations for my senior vocal recital were in full swing with endless practice and rehearsals on top of my regular class schedule. Then there was the fact that I was planning my wedding, while in the process of buying a home and furniture, with my future husband. Somehow I was able to achieve a balance with all that I was juggling. I attribute this to being my very best physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.
For over two weeks now, my husband, and I have been planning and preparing for the new year. He's watched first hand as I've been struggling with feelings of defeat as a spouse, mother, friend, teacher, and blogger, over and over again. He's as determined as I am to make things better, and help me be my very best this year.
We've discussed my feelings about myself, and why I may be feeling the way I do. Countless hours have been spent discussing and praying about changes to family routines and schedules, allowing consistent time for me to exercise, without interruption, in our home, and adequate time for learning time preparations and blogging each day. Meal plans and eating habits have even been part of our conversations. We've discussed future changes and repairs to our home, and how they can and will help me be my very best. (After all, when you spend all of your time at home, it's easy to judge yourself based on how your house looks, whether old or new, clean or dirty.) My husband has reminded me of the importance of simplifying and taking breaks to rejuvenate. Then we've both spoken about the many factors in our lives that are completely out of our control, and won't be changing any time soon.
Finally, we prayerfully put together a plan for our family to help me be my very best this year. This is not something I can do on my own. I definitely need the help and support of my husband and children. As we've carefully implemented multiple parts of the plan already, I've seen success like never before. This gives me so much hope and confidence that I CAN succeed at being my very best again. It may look completely different than it has in the past, but a new best isn't a horrible thing either!
Our plan consists of many parts, addressing the many roles I have at this time in my life. I will be breaking each one of them down into more detail in future posts, explaining their importance and positive effects. Parts of our plan have been in place and very consistent for days, months, and even years. Other parts are new and will definitely require me to grow. The combination of old and new, when done consistently and accurately, are a guaranteed recipe for success. It may seem odd for me to say this already, but there are no secrets in my plans. They have been tried and tested by many. It just takes courage to follow through. I figure if I share all of my plans, progress, and success with you, it's a way to hold myself accountable in the best way. And perhaps, you may want to join me in becoming your best self too!