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Gathering my Thoughts about 2014

As I gather my thoughts about the year 2014, I keep trying to come up with a word that describes my feelings about it.  I don't have the sense of wonder or joy about the year, in fact, I feel rather numb to the whole thing...

I retired this year from public education, something I truly loved doing yet the last three years of it were rough.  Rough from the public grinding down on the hard work I saw teachers doing day in and out.  I was so ready to leave yet, I wasn't ready, either.  I was so grateful to learn about the position with the University of Missouri, that allows me to be in the schools daily but not dealing with the public persona of education.  I still see many teachers working hard day in and out, but I feel a disconnect between my work and the public's opinion of public education.

I enjoyed a lovely vacation to Alaska to celebrate the retirement.  I got to piggyback on our daughter's presentation at a conference.  I was awed by the vast sky and land, the beautiful glaciers and wildlife.  However, instead of feeling like I accomplished something on my bucket list, I felt like need to come back.  Alaska is calling me back.  I think I still need to do a cruise to see the really beautiful glaciers and to experience the true size of the state.  

We have been in our new home for a year now!  During this year we were on our neighborhood's garden tour and the Christmas homes tour.  People were lovely about the house and garden.  A couple came to us during the Christmas tour and said such sweet things, kept coming back to me and asking me where did I get this and that, and later I found out they considered us their favorite home and I found out that they lived in Lafayette Square!  One of the most beautiful areas in Saint Louis!  I was so humbled by their genuine interest of our home.  Yet... (see the pattern?) none of my family or my husband's family saw our house, and my daughter and her husband aren't really into the Christmas decorating like I am.  I feel like I do it for me and make everyone else "do" it.  My poor son-in-law is always put to work on his Thanksgiving break hauling up the boxes of decorations.  Is it time to simplify?  

I am going to end this bleak essay by reflecting on some things that went right:  we had a bumper crop of tomatoes (my favorite veggie) and our 37th anniversary dinner was spectacular!  I am not saying that these were the only events of 2014 that I loved, because they weren't.  I am finding a pattern here that I need to address within my own self and it is probably obvious to others what it is, even if it's not obvious to me, yet.  Have no fear, I am up to the task!

In 2009 I focused on the word Happiness for the year.  I think it might be time to re-examine this concept, but I think I want to focus on JOY.  Finding my true joy and helping others find theirs.  

Would you like to comment?

  1. Happy New Year! Great reflection on your year! I think I've posted before how hard it is to leave a place you've called home for so long. I moved from KC to Omaha, almost 9 years ago and it took me a long time to feel like this was "home". Although I didn't retire (DARN), I did change careers, from one I'd had for 27 years to a brand new one. All of this in your 50's is just challenging. Here's to a wonderful 2015, may you find the joy and wonder! :)

  2. You have a wonderful decorating sense. Sounds as if you are pondering...we all do when we arrive at a certain age. My mother and I happily got out my grandmother's Christmas decorations until she was well past ninety. So I don't think your family worry about that bit...they'd probably be more likely to worry if you didn't want to decorate. "Do what makes you feel lovely" is the advice I once received so I'll pass it on. Happy 2015 to you and yours!

  3. Terri,
    I am now following you over here. Congrats on your retirement and congrats on your new home!! In reading this, I heard a lot of how i felt about 2014. When you get a chance, stop by my regular blog and read my post on My One Little Word for 2015 and i think you will see that you are not alone in how you feel!!

    Congrats on the garden and Home tour too!!


  4. I would worry more Sis, if you didn't want to decorate. I look forward to seeing the pictures you post of all that you do. I kinda live vicariously through you. I have never had the decorating sense you have, seasonal or other. It brings me joy knowing it makes you happy. If I lived close enough, you would never get rid of me HA!! But true. Keep doing the things that make you smile, because I am smiling with you!!


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