As 2016 ends and 2017 begins, we start to make our resolutions for the year to follow. What will we do differently? Should we make lifestyle changes? How can we make the new year our best yet?
For me, I’ve never been big into making resolutions. Mostly because I didn’t want to set a resolution and fail. I didn’t want to be disappointed with the end results of a resolution if I was not fully committed.
However, this year is different. The year 2016 has taught me a lesson I will hold close to my heart and practice each day in 2017.
The lesson: Thankfulness.
In August, we put our house up for sale. We listed on a Saturday and were contingent on Monday. In a few short days, here we were packing up our memories.
Our closing date finally arrived and there I found myself sitting across from a single mom. She told us a little about her children, but what she said next struck me. I cannot remember her exact words, but she told us how excited her son was to move into his first home. I will never forget the feelings I felt at that exact moment.
Even though I was sad, someone else was happy. My memories may have been ending, but somebody’s were beginning. All of a sudden, my feelings didn’t matter. What mattered was a 9-year-old boy was very excited to move into his new home.
This realization of thankfulness opened up a whole new outlook on life and motherhood for me.
I was thankful my son had a house to grow up in and a husband who shares parenthood responsibilities with me. But, I was mostly thankful as parents we were not struggling.
This realization also made me think about how hard motherhood can be. You are exhausted because the baby was up all night, short tempered because you have stubborn children who do not listen, or stir crazy from sitting at home all day with a toddler who asks a million questions a day. I’ve been there. We all have.
The single mother that day taught me to evaluate what is important in life.
Some parents are exhausted because they have really sick children and it takes every ounce of energy from them to help fight with them and fight for them. Some would love to have moments back when their kids are being curious and always testing boundaries, but uncertainties in life make these moments just memories. Then there are people who would love to be stir crazy with a toddler asking a million questions, but fertility issues, adoption laws, and even pregnancy complications rip them from this luxury.
Most days, we need to take a step back and realize just how lucky we truly are.
My son is a healthy, vibrant, curious, two-year-old boy who makes my heart so full.
For 2017, I need to focus on that. Focus on a life of thankfulness.
*This is dedicated to that single mother who did anything to make her children happy. Thank you for teaching me a valuable lesson to practice each day.*