Sunday, January 6, 2013


It seems that whether or not you intend to make 'resolutions' the beginning of a new year is a natural time to reflect and to look forward, all at the same time.  Having just passed my 58th birthday I recognize and appreciate the many wonderful people and experiences these 58 years encompass.  Reflection is something I do naturally - looking forward on the other hand is something that I find a bit more challenging.  We are at a time in our lives where there will be many changes and I am  looking forward to them while at the same time recognizing that there will be challenges that come with those changes.  The next couple of years will be exciting, adventurous and will bring a whole host of new experiences that will both enrich and challenge us.
The water colour painting above by Judi Motts Pedder is of one of my favourite places in the world.  The spit in Comox, on Vancouver Island, is where I spent my teenage years when the world seemed too much to handle, which really wasn't that often.  I don't get there as often as I would like but when I'm there I feel peace settling in all around me.  I can actually feel the salty air expand deep into my lungs as my muscles relax and the furrow leaves my brow.  There is always a breeze, always the sound of the waves washing up onto the shore, always the beautiful colours of the beach and the sea sky, always the feel of sand under your feet and always , always, the feeling that I'm home. If there was any one place in the world I would choose to go to comtemplate life it would be here.  So it seems fitting that I gaze at this picture, in lieu of being able to really be there, as I ponder what 2013 will bring my way.  I choose the word "bring" with intention for life will always have surprises for you no matter how well you think you have it all planned out.
So, my guiding word for 2013 is 'embrace'. 
While there are many definitions for the word 'embrace' my initial interpretation is in the most literal of senses.  I will continue to embrace my family and close friends, to appreciate all the love and laughter and support that they bring to my world, to pull them close and show them that I love them every chance I get.
Retirement has brought many changes to my world and with retirement sneaking up on my husband the changes will get bigger and hopefully, better.  The next couple of years will involve moving a couple of times and lots and lots of travel.  I intend to embrace all of the experiences and new acquaintances that come with these changes. 
My physical health has been suspect over the last couple of years and I am working hard to embrace some new practices in my life.  I have played around with yoga and meditation and this year I intend to embrace both fully including a yoga retreat next month.
We are all happy in life to embrace the moments that bring us joy.  We are less happy to embrace those moments that bring us pain.  Of course we'd all love a life with no pain but recognize that our joy would be less joyful without it.  While my life is good there are always moments or situations that bring out a side of me that I'm not always proud of and a side of me that I certainly don't embrace.  It is my intention this year to embrace all of me for I wouldn't be who I am without all facets of my personality.   I am a passionate person.  I am passionately happy.  I am passionately angry.  I am passionately curious and I am passionately emotional.  I love that I am passionate and will embrace this quality in both its positive and negative forms.

"Embrace who you are. You have been given every tool, every talent,
every trait you need to realize your destiny." 

This is a quote I have come across in various forms time and time again over the last few months and 2013 will be the year for me to embrace who I am.  I am hesitant, even at craft shows to say that I am an artist.  But, it's true.  I am.  I haven't been to art school and have no formal training.  I don't know how to sketch or paint or take photographs like a professional.  What I do have is a curious nature and an ability to enjoy trying new things.  In some of those trials I have found that I do have the ability to "create" and it's time to embrace this side of me as well.

I have taken on a creative project for 2013 and that project is me. I am on a quest to find out who I am and who I want to be as this new phase of my life continues.  The first few months of retirement have been quiet and I have enjoyed the opportunity to read, create, sleep, clean, cook and spend my days adjusting to having no schedule.  Mostly, it's been fun.  However, I have not yet fully embraced it and the time to do that has come.

  I will finish today's blog with a quote from the book that is a timely gift from a treasured friend, MEDITATIONS FROM THE MAT
for it seems to sum up all I intend to embrace in the coming year. . .

"A spiritual practice is one that brings us full circle -- not to a new self but, rather, back to the essence of our true selves.  Yoga is the practice of celebrating what is.  At the end of the hero's journey, he finds that he did not need to go anywhere, that all he sought was inside him all along.  Dorothy, having traveled across time and space to the land of Oz, and having struggled desperately to find her way back to Kansas, discovers that she could have gone home at any time.  In the end, she learns that her adventures have simply brought her to the point where she can believe this. 
It is the aim of all spiritual seeking to bring us home,
home to the understanding
 that we already have
 everything we need."

A New Year’s wish from Neil Gaiman that stands the test of time. All the best in the coming year!
Happy 2013 everyone!


  1. Roxanne, you are one of the good ones. Your family is lucky to have such a mindful mom/grandma/wife. Yoga has changed my life in the way you describe here. It is almost as good as being on the spit at Comox :) Lots of love and good wishes for this coming year as you embrace yourself in this new phase of your wonderful life! xo

  2. thank you so much for your kind words Rebecca. I am enjoying it all and it really is a journey of discovery for me. I married young, had my children young, went back to school after having 4 kids and then went straight to teaching. It was all terrific but incredibly busy. I am enjoying this new novelty called 'time'. thanks so much for reading, commenting and supporting. It means the world to me!