Happy New Year! Walang (No) Forever! Vacation is Over! It’s a back-to-work Monday for most of us. I wish you all had a safe, happy and incredible New Year’s celebration. Start the year right and the next 365 days will be alright as well.
Another year had ended. Another chapter had closed. But before I finally set aside the book of 2015, I’d like to ascertain one last time that I’ll be able to carry its lessons not only in 2016 but for the rest of my life. Sharing to you the things I learned in 2015:
1. Perhaps the greatest lesson I’ve learned is that FAMILY will forever be FAMILY. It must always come first. Sometimes, it takes a great struggle before we appreciate it. When my brother-in-law passed away in October 2015, I suddenly felt being truly belonged to my husband’s family. I know it’s bizarre. Don’t get me wrong, I have always had a good relationship with my in-laws, it’s just that after that trial (death), I felt much closer to everybody. The tests of loss and grief I believe were necessary instruments to tighten our bonds. It will forever be a lesson for us to cherish the present moment and to celebrate as many occasions as possible with families because we will not live forever. Personally, I have realized so many things – things which I never thought I could actually do for them. Forgiveness, family ties, and love are some of the blessings which arose from his death. I wish we’d learn and realize all those in some other subtle way without losing a dear brother but who are we to question or even doubt God’s plans for him and for us.
2. A well-balanced life is good for the soul. Motherhood is only one of the many roles God has given me to play. Perhaps it’s a major one especially now that I have two adorable yet very demanding toddlers. That does not mean however that I should neglect my other roles. I should always remember that I am also a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend and most of all a servant of God. I should pay attention to all these roles as well because they are all part of who I am and who God wants me to be. I want to nail this motherhood thingy but I also want to be whole in accordance with God’s will and without my other roles especially as a servant of God, I know deep down that I can never be whole.
3. Blood may be thicker than water pero iba rin ang may maboteng pinagsamahan (but it’s also special when you shared good times together). I have but few good friends. I was never a magnet for friendships. I always end up in a small trusted circle. When I was younger, I would envy girls with a bunch of girlfriends but now that I know better, I can only be grateful that I have a handful yet true friends who love and support me just like a sister and brother would. My former boss once said (in my Despedida) that I am elusive. People always get an impression that I’m someone who is hard to figure out. Honestly, I think otherwise. I think I’m just happy and comfortable being around with people I have chosen to trust. I’m glad that I have forged timeless and boundless friendships with wonderful people. But I don’t want to push my luck too much. I know I need to take care of their friendships too.
4. Live positively by eliminating the negative people in your life. We hold the power to choose who earns a spot in our lives. We can choose who will stay and who needs to leave. There are people who need not be in our lives. Let go of them. I have tagged a few and guess what, in 2015 it was finally a 100% success. Maybe, I am really elusive. It may be because of what I’ve gone through childhood. I suffered from inferiority complex caused by some relatives. Because of that, I learned to shut doors, build walls and be indifferent. That way, I won’t get hurt by their opinions. I have already overcome that particular struggle. I still build walls and get cold whenever I see fitt as a defense mechanism which I’m not sure if I’m willing to lose. But through the years, I have also learned to open doors, build bridges and genuinely care.
5. There is joy in simplicity. I get amazed by how much happy memories I was able to make last year despite lacking millions of pesos. Happiness truly is a matter of perspective. Money helps but it is never about it alone. We’re not very rich but we had tons of happy memories last year and we do not intend to stop or slow down. In fact, we want blessings and celebrations to multiply. To start off, this February the whole family is scheduled to visit Baguio City. Grandeur is not equal to bliss. We can have a blissful living if our hearts passionately desire for it.
6. The saddest part about New Year is my loved ones getting older especially my parents and my kids. My mom just celebrated her 64th birthday and as a gift of gratitude, I promise her (and myself) that I will help her and my sister build their home. So help me God! This morning when I stepped outside our door to go to the office, I kissed my daughter goodbye and for the first time, she did not cry, follow me or try to stop me! Was I overjoyed? No, I was not. My daughter may be ready to be left by her mother but I will never be ready to leave my children. It actually hurts me a bit. For me, it means she’s already used to being left by her mother. The only way to win over this saddening thought is to pray to God and enjoy the life He blessed us with.
7. Faith is hard work. It’s not an overnight virtue. Nothing is. Despite the never-ending problems, inadequacies, and disappointments, I was happy last year. I cannot imagine how happy I could have been had I been closer to God. I feel like I’ve been missing a lot, so much of joys and blessings because I do not put God at the center of my life and relationships. I should work on it and make it my priority. It is never too late to put God first in everything we do. Sadly, past 2015 has not been so fruitful for my spirituality. Thank You, God, for forgiving me and embracing me again. Thank You for this chance (2016) You have given me to get closer to You.
How about you? What are the lessons 2015 has left/blessed you with? Do share your thoughts away. I believe that writing/sharing your lessons will double the chances of you remembering them by heart. We all need to learn from one another because just like what Groucho Marx said, “Learn from the mistakes of others. You can never live long enough to make them all by yourself.” Also, a genius once said, “Learning from your mistakes makes you a smart but learning from other people’s mistakes makes you a genius.”
Image from DeattoStock