2017 Year of Reflection
I started writing this post on Facebook, but then it quickly turned from a single post into a novel. Apparently, I like to be wordy, lol. So I decided to switch gears and move it over here.
We're nearing the end of the year and it's always a time of reflection. Earlier this month there was a list going around the book community. I witnessed as a bunch of authors listed their 25 accomplishments for the year and I instantly got down on myself.
I sent my husband text messages telling him how I just felt like a complete failure and I hadn't accomplished a single thing this year. I bawled and it was pretty ugly. But like the amazing man I know he is, he talked me off the ledge. He told me how incredibly strong of a person I am and although I've had an insanely hellish year I still came out the other side with a multitude of accomplishments.
One of my favorite quotes has always been comparison is the thief of joy. I get bogged down easily comparing myself to others, but that's not reality. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. they're all a mirage. We go on social media to get praise for all of the accomplishments we have and rarely do we share the ugly. And life can definitely be ugly more often than not.
This time last year was one of the lowest points in my life. I suffer from rosacea and unfortunately, it is 100% exacerbated by stress. When I lose control of my life and feel completely helpless that's when I have the most flare-ups. This time last year I completely lost my vision in one of my eyes because of my rosacea. I ended up being fired from my job because I needed time off to get my vision back. This was all the week before Christmas.
I was lost and I had the biggest case of mom guilt on my shoulders. I felt like an utter and complete failure. I didn't know it at the time, but losing that job was a blessing in disguise. It beyond stressed me out and my health was rapidly deteriorating because of it. It physically made me ill to get out of bed and think about going to work.
I'm not going to say I immediately jumped back and everything was good to go. Because that's not even close to the truth. Instead, I spent a lot of time feeling down on myself. I put all of this blame on my own shoulders and I did not feel an ounce of the holiday spirit last year. I couldn't force myself to pretend to be happy. I felt like I had taken a thousand steps back in life and there was no moving forward at that point.
But then I switched my focus. It wasn't all about me and I needed to stop pretending like it was the end of the world. I had a roof over my head, I had electricity, food on the table, and most of all I was surrounded by a world of support. A lot of people can't say the same. So I decided to switch gears and open myself up to possibility. I've always been a giving person and my dream has always been to affect others and make their lives better. But I've always focused on the financial and that was definitely not something in the realm of possibility for us.
Do you ever have a sign that throttles itself into your life so hard you get whiplash? That happened to me. I got this intense lightbulb moment when I was on Craigslist of all places and it completely changed my entire year. If you haven't been following my surrogacy journey, you can go back to the beginning and read from here. I won't make this post any longer than it needs to be, by going into all of those details. But I will tell you I did a lot this year. My author business might have taken a backseat, but I did release a novel and a short story in an anthology. I also built up a brand new beauty business, which by the way the awesome skincare products have helped my rosacea and no more antibiotics! I also expanded my formatting business.
On top of all of that, I got pregnant and it has been one of the hardest pregnancies of my life. My body has gone through a whirlwind of changes that were completely unexpected, but it's all worth it to me. Because I'm changing another couples life in a way that they could never do for themselves. I'm giving them a tremendous gift and it makes me so incredibly happy to know that I am able to do this for them.
So while I don't have a list of accomplishments like hitting the USA Today bestseller list, buying a home for my family, or making a six-figure annual income, I've hit accomplishments nonetheless. They're mine and not something that I need to compare to others. Because they're still completely meaningful. What are some of your accomplishments that you've made this year?