Exercise Is Good For EveryoneJanuary 3, 2024
Timeless Treasure – Chateau Chic January 2024January 3, 2024
With a new year, there’s always times of reflection and times of looking forward. We stop to ponder the year that passed and ready our hearts for the upcoming year that we have yet to meet.
The problem with looking forward is that we can only look at what we think the year will look like. But when we look back, we see all the things we never knew were heading our way.
“This year has been such a year of loss” one friend recently said of 2023. That short sentence spoke more than many paragraphs. A year that feels like loss after loss, the piling on of things forever gone. Not all loss is bad, but loss always changes “the way things were.” And part of grieving loss is grieving the life we once lived.
Sometimes we didn’t notice all the good when we were living it, but when certain people and places are gone, we see the them for what they were – a gift to us while they were a part of our lives. Some losses are natural – children moving away, changing jobs and schools, seasons coming to an end. We knew the end would come, but weren’t quite ready to recognize what the end meant.
It’s a change of “the way things were.”
Barbra Streisand said it like this “memories light the corners of my mind. Misty watercolor memories of the way we were….. Can it be that it was all so simple then? Or has time re-written every line?”
Funny how that feels. When we look back, it sometimes feels like a simpler, easier time. But if we are honest, it wasn’t simple when we were living it. We never go through a day and say “well, that was a beautiful, simple, easy day.” I’m more likely to talk about how busy my day was, how crowded our schedule feels or the overwhelming press of all the things.
But there’s a beauty and simplicity in the day-to-day if we stop to look. Today was one of those days. Church in the morning, a home-cooked lunch, all our family here, and a quiet afternoon leading into a night spent watching “The Sound of Music.” Mostly quiet, mostly good, and it took me sitting down to write this article to think about the simplicity of today.
It was beautiful and simple and if anything ever changed would be one of the “good old days.” Instead, I’m looking at it as “a good day today.”
It takes some effort to recognize the good and not focus on all the other things. I’ve spoken of this before – seeing the good in every day. But it’s a message worth repeating. Taking joy in each day. It’s one of the ways we redeem the time and don’t waste each day. To be honest, it would be easier to talk about the eight loads of clothes we washed today or the back porch that still needs to be cleaned off or presents still left unwrapped (we are still waiting on Christmas while I’m writing this article). We had a visit from a friend this afternoon, and still managed to squeeze in an afternoon nap.
The Sunday afternoon chores simply meant we had a busy week and lots of people in and out of this house. So we washed clothes, straightened the house and caught up on just a little bit of much-needed rest. Nothing special, but so wonderful.
When I look back at this time together, I want to remember the way today felt. A simple kind of beauty that felt warm with life.
I’m looking into this new year, and I feel hopeful. That even if it would be a year of loss, even the loss means that we had something worth losing. To never experience loss would mean to never have anyone or anything worth losing. I know what I think this year will bring, but I’m ready for whatever might come.
These are the good days and I want to recognize that I’m living in what I’ll one day look back and miss.
So look forward and glance back, but take joy in each day. You’ll only live this day once.