This post is a departure from the subject of quilting. I started the writing, thinking it would be a private journaling just for me. Then I thought I should post it in an effort to keep myself accountable and engaged in the topic. I considered a brand new blog dedicated to the topic, but determined in the end that I haven’t posted about quilting too frequently and not that many people read my blog anyway (thank the Lord, since this post includes personal information that I really don’t want the whole world, or even my husband, to know), so what the heck. A new series, at least I hope I remain engaged enough to create a series, embedded in a quilting blog. Here goes.
The holidays are officially over. It is January 2, a time for reflection. I just read a friend’s blog, describing her tackling 12 different “somedays” over the past year and how one of her biggest accomplishments during the challenge has been determining that some wants are not backed by a desire strong enough to fire the effort required for their accomplishment. The joy, or at least freedom, comes from eliminating that want from her list without its actual accomplishment.
I dreamt the other night a recurring dream. I’m in college (at some advanced age), and finals have arrived. This time, unlike other times, I’m doing well and am prepared for finals in some of my classes, but not in all (the usual condition in this dream). I’ve discovered that one of my respected professors (a younger woman than I) is proctoring the final exam in one of my unattended classes. In an effort to retain her good opinion of me, I fess up that I’m not prepared for the final she is proctoring. She looks closely at me and asks me why I’m there at all if my heart is not in it. In my dream world I am stunned with the reality and wisdom of her question and the truth it reveals. In that moment, in dreamland, I begin to search for what I should be doing, realizing that it is past time for me to end the ongoing college loop. It is time to get serious; what will bring me joy?
I always love to sit in early January and reflect on my accomplishments of the past year and consider my plans for the coming year. This is normally a light-hearted and dreamy reflection. However, I’m feeling different about it this year. This coming year, I will turn 59, perilously close to 60. I weigh more than I ever have, perilously close to 200 pounds. I am in terrible shape, perilously near sedentary. I suffer from foot pain that makes me hobble. In short, I feel perilously close to a crippled old age.
From every respect, 2016 was a disastrous year for me physically. Otherwise? My quilting business has been a success. I have re-paid my substantial initial investment with a nice return to boot, having helped my customers finish nearly 1000 quilts since my launch in May 2013. I’ve spent good time with my adult children and granddaughters, even though we live on opposite sides of the country. My hubby and I are beginning to contemplate retirement, still several years off, and the adventures we will undertake (assuming I’m not old and crippled). I have embraced the idea that I am a “maker” and happiest when I am creating something with my own hands (or with the help of today’s technology as manifested in my amazing machines).
Where does that leave me for 2017 goals? I am in no mood to dream and be light-hearted about this. I may be at a turning point; I may have dreamt my college unprepared for finals dream for the last time; it may be my last chance to avoid an old and crippled future. That last bit is meant to be light-hearted. I am well aware that in 10 years, 59 will seem a wonderful, and young, age. Still, my focus for 2017, my only stated goals, will be those focused on health and are these: return to a normal weight, re-become a runner, become a yogi. That’s it. There is a niggling voice in my head that says I should also have relationship goals, if not business goals. But I am resolved that the best thing I can do for my relationships is to avoid the perilously close crippled old age I mentioned before. Does the thought of once again becoming a runner, becoming a yogi, controlling what goes into my mouth make me joyful in this moment? No. Am I willing to do the work to arrive on the other side, to reunite with the fit and healthy me? Yes, in this moment, and I pray yes in all the future moments of this adventure. Stay tuned to watch my progress toward these goals, because heaven knows, no one wants to watch failure! Gulp.