The sparkle of lights, decorations and holiday get togethers are behind us. The new year has arrived and with it, inevitably, new resolutions, or new “words” that we hope will define our 2018.
I never make resolutions or goals for a new year because I know myself too well. I might last a week, maybe even a month, but my motivation eventually disappears just like the tinsel and sparkle of December.
This year is different.
This new year I want to work on the “new me”. And not in the way you’re probably thinking.
Next month will be the third anniversary of the day we heard the words “Has anyone mentioned the ‘A’ word to you?” In reference to our then 20 month old nonverbal, aggressive, sensory seeking son.
In the years since our son’s autism was diagnosed I have poured. I’ve poured myself into Austin trying to help him make as much progress as quickly as possible. I thought if we just had the right therapies, the right diet, the right supplements, I could help Austin overcome his autism. There were almost no suggestions that I didn’t try. Anything to cure him, to help him to be as “normal” as possible.
Three years in and I’m exhausted. I’m drained and I wonder if I’ve obsessed so much over helping Austin that it has come at the expense of my two daughters and my husband.
I haven’t put the time that I should into friendships. I haven’t openly shared what we go through each and every day. I’ve pulled away from a lot of things and people, and in doing so, I’ve deprived myself of being a healthier place mentally, spiritually.
So for this new year, my resolve to be the new me is pretty simple.
I want to share more. Not just safely curled up writing behind the computer, but face to face. With the people I’m blessed to have in my life, the people who want to help.
I want to take time away from the chaos that is our home life and recharge.
I want to intentionally make time for dates with my husband. Not just sitting on the couch after the kids go to bed as has been our norm, but actually make the effort to leave our house and enjoy each other’s company.
I’m not perfect and I know I will fail at times with my resolutions. But my motivation this year doesn’t have anything to do with me. It has everything to do with the two sweet little girls, the one vulnerable little boy, and the hard-working police officer who so desperately need me to be at my best.
And so for them, I will be the new me.