You know that saying “Do something today that your future self will thank you for.”? Well, 2022 Janice did a lot of things that 2023 Janice is thankful for and so I have decided to write her a letter. I think it is important that she knows how much she means to me and how much her choices have shaped who and where I am today. Here it goes…
Dear 2022 Self,
I want to thank you for all that you have done for me this year. 2022 was strange and exhausting and I know there were some moments where you wanted to give up, but you didn’t, and now here I am on the first day of 2023 looking at an abundance of opportunities and I owe it all to you.
Thank you for taking care of your mental health. You made brave choices to speak when it felt safe to do so and ask for help when you needed it. You took your medication every day, slept when you were tired, wrote when you felt compelled to, found ways to connect with others and did your best to cultivate compassion for your inner critic. I am still anxious and afraid a lot of the time but because of the work you have done, I know how to trust myself just a little bit more.
Thank you for being so committed to learning more about the world and how you fit into it. Thank you for reading so many books. Thank you for being curious and kind, for trying to be aware of your biases and judgements, and for asking questions and seeking answers. Because of your dedication to lifelong learning, I am in a better position to help myself and the people I care most about.
Thank you for the levity you brought to this past year. You worked hard to get out of your head and resisted the urge to worry what others think about you. You acted on your creative impulses and chose fun over fear more often than not. These choices have empowered me to see the world differently and they have made me a better wife, mother and friend.
Thank you for listening to your body and finding peace through rest. This year did not break your brain, at least not in the way you are afraid it did. You did not check out or give up. You needed time and space and you gave it to yourself and in doing that you learned that your worth does not lie in your accomplishments. I begin this new year with the wisdom that sometimes sitting in stillness and letting go is better than pushing through pain. This is, hands down, the most important lesson you have taught me this year.
One year ago you sat down and did something that all the former versions of us were afraid to do. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for starting this blog. Thank you for finding the courage to write and to open yourself up to people in way that was scary and vulnerable. You pushed through doubt and fear and you pursued this thing you felt called to do and I cannot express how happy I am that you did. You have touched people’s lives, made them laugh, forged new connections, strengthened existing bonds and created an impact in your own small way. I am so very proud of you.
And with that my friend, it is my honour to tell you that your work is done. You acted, each and every day, with me, your future self, in mind and now it is your turn to rest. There is no way to know exactly what will transpire over the next 365 sunrises and sunsets but thanks to the choices you made over the last 12 months, I feel ready for it. I welcome the changes, discomfort, sadness, hope, joy, love and everything else that 2023 has to bring. I promise you that I will continue to make choices that my future selves will thank me for. Rest easy. I’ve got it from here.
With love and gratitude,
ONE MORE THING…
I could not possibly look back on 2022 without acknowledging the incredible people in my life who have supported me. I am literally surrounded by exemplary human beings who go out of their way to make the world a better place. There is very rarely a day that goes by where I am not amazed by folks who make up the communities I am a part of.
Thank you to all of you who read my blog and gave me words of encouragement. You kept me going when I didn’t think I could or should.
Thank you to all of you who reached out and shared a piece of your story with me. You are my heroes and I hold each of you in a very special place in my heart.
Thank you to those who sent me coffee memes, mental health posts, and videos that made me laugh. Thank you for the lunches, the coffee dates and the late night talks. Thank you for your phone calls and text messages, the invites to yoga, spin and boxing classes, the walks, the runs (the kind you do with your feet not your butt), the book recommendations and for all the quiet, awkward moments where we didn’t know what to say and just sat in stillness. Every single one of these connections is a gift that makes me want to be a better person.
Thank you to the folks who thought about me, maybe even just once, over the last year. Your energy brought me strength and clarity.
And finally, to those of you who think you are not included in this inventory of gratitude, thank you for being humble and know that you are most definitely a part of my story. You give without expectation of anything in return, least of all recognition. I am grateful for you.
Friends, I raise my cup of coffee to you and offer a toast to the new year. Thank you for bringing Blind Enthusiasm into my life. Cheers!
♥️ Janice ♥️
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