Way back (feels like forever ago) in 2019, I remember thinking about all the firsts and lasts that were happening. If I knew that at the end of 2021 I was still in the same house I’m not sure I would have coped. Its a good thing we don’t know the future. Yes, we might know parts of it, but we can’t predict what will transpire – who would have predicted Covid? Who would have predicted lockdowns, being jobless, facing homelessness? Not me, that is for sure.
As 2021 draws to a close, I have had 2 extra Christmases in my home than what I predicted. I don’t have the divorce papers in my hand yet, and I don’t have peace in that space. 2020 was certainly a downward spiral. I was lost, vulnerable, jobless during a pandemic, and at times soulless. My life was deconstructed to the nenth degree. Everything I knew. Marriage, myself, my family, my stability, my relationship with God. It was torn apart. Oh I lay bare so many times…. time where I could hardly face the next day. Days where I was consumed with anger, or sadness, or grief. By the end of 2020, I had every foundation rocked and I escaped bruised, battered and worn.
Walking into 2021 seemed to bring hope. And there was hope. I was wading through quicksand trying to find myself. Trying to align who I was with the actions I was taking. The who I was, who I wanted to be, and who I knew God wanted me to be were at war with each other. Now to be fair… I always gave myself 2-3 years to get myself together. I knew there would be work involved in healing. My goal was always to be healed and on life’s new trajectory by the time I was 50. Well, I have about 380 days to go or thereabouts…. and oh how gracious time is to us!
2021 has brought hope, and light, and a lot of change. From job changes, to housing sales and re-purchases, from marriage to babies… there has been a lot of change in my family. For me, its been like a long held sigh. Not a sigh of despair… but a sigh you relax into. One that at each step you see the ends, you embrace the closure of circumstances. Oh there have been times I have let myself down. Times I have stumbled and fallen. Times I have clung to a life raft… but there have been significant times of healing. Significant times where I could put the past to rest. Times I could forgive myself, where I could allow myself grace. There have been times of hard work, times of confusion, insecurity, trepidation. But most of all…. there has been this sense of moving forward. Not being stuck, but continually moving forward in who I am and in the circumstances.
2021 has seen a job surrounded by beautiful people. Ironically it is back at a place that held a lot of pain for me. I knew that God brought me back to heal those places that bled, and I’m so pleased he did. He has not only healed them, but placed a family around me. a place where friendships are old, but new, a place where people are genuine and lovely. I’m so thankful for that. He has placed me in a team that likes to have fun and is a good place to be. He has gifted me family. Children whose eyes have been opened to their father. Children who will come into bat for me. Children who have spent time renovating, giving me strength, holding me when I cried and encouraging me when I stumbled. Oh I am so thankful to God for wonderful children.
So as 2021 passes… I am thankful to God. For my family, for my job, for taking my hand and leading me through the year, for putting up with my impatience, for guiding my choices, and for healing so many parts of me. Last of all I’m so thankful for finance approval for my new place to live in 2022! What a way to end the year.
As I look forward to 2022, I know there will be times of hardship, there will be times I will be on my knees, but there is so much to look forward to. Firstly, the grandbaby coming in February. How can you not be excited about new life and a wonderful Mum and Dad for baby to be blessed by. I’m excited for moving, and all that comes with it. I’m excited for continued freedom and growth, and healing. I’m excited to go deeper with God, and to free up the space in my brain to soak in his presence, to linger with him.
In looking back, the last two years have been incredibly challenging. But I stand. I stand in God’s grace, in His love, and humbled by his compassion and forgiveness. I stand knowing I am loved by God, but also by family. I stand thankful for beautiful friends who have held my hand on this journey. I stand knowing that I am finding the me who was hidden for all these years. I stand knowing tomorrow will be better than yesterday. I stand knowing that I can move forward with strength and dignity. I stand thankful for my wonderful counsellor who has listened and inspired me to keep going. I stand looking forward, but being thankful for the hardships.
So thank you 2020 and 2021…. if I knew what you held I might have made different choices… but I’m so thankful for the future being somewhat a mystery and for the growth and strength that will come through it.
Happy New Year to everyone out there. May 2022 bring you strength, growth and contentment.