I would have to say that 2011 was a year of growth. I learned that I need to be able to grow and change, even if I don't always want to.
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Last year my husband, Andrew, lost his job a few days before Christmas. It came as a complete shock to both of us. We were still reveling in spending our first Christmas in our new home with our cats and dog and weren't sure what we were going to do with only one income since we now had a house payment to worry about. I was able to see what a strong man my husband is as he took a while to deal with the disappointment and then started figuring out what to do. I saw such a change in him from when he was job searching last, when he moved from Michigan to Indiana to be near me. He was more confident, more determined, and more motivated than he was before. He ended up getting a job at Vine and Table, which is a gourmet deli and wine store. He also made the decision to go back to school for a masters in IT.
You may be asking yourself, what does any of this have to do with you? And you're right. It doesn't much. I wasn't the one who lost my job. I wasn't the one who decided to go back to school. But both of those things forced me to realize how terrified I was, and still am, of change. I love tradition and really enjoy being able to do the same things over and over. With Andrew's life changing so drastically, I had to accept that change and learn that change can lead to growth, even if I didn't want it to. I was forced into change and growth and I couldn't be happier because, even though it's difficult, it shows me how strong I am, how strong Andrew is, and how strong we are as a couple.
Since then we've had some other major issues to deal with, but we've taken the approach that if we can get through that time than we can get through whatever else we're forced to deal with.
I'm not exactly sure what I want my word for 2012 to be. When I wrote about this prompt last year, the word I picked for 2011 was intention. As I put it then, "I would love to be more intentional with my time and energy, to deliberately think about what I want to do with my minutes because they quickly add up to hours, days, weeks, months, and years." I think my word for 2012 would have to be something along those same lines, though I feel bad choosing the same word two years in a row.
Maybe my word for this year will be challenge. I think it's time that I start to challenge myself to get out of my comfort zone, which I did a little bit this year by starting my Mary Kay business, but would like to continue by challenging myself physically, mentally, and creatively. With my desire for tradition I tend to get set in my ways, so challenge seems like a good word to help me continue the growth I've had this year.