One thing I quite like about this time of the year is that our news feeds are full of (mostly) happy posts of how people have had the “best year ever” – or if not, how they will make changes to make this year a better one.
For the first time, this year I am not following my fellow Facebook friends in making New Year’s resolutions. For sure, I have things I want to achieve this year; goals, aims and dreams, but I’m not setting time limits on them, because the last 5 years have taught me no matter how well you plan things, “shit” can block your path. This “shit” might be temporary, or it might take awhile to tackle. But these “shit” things often work for the good in the end; even if it’s just that you have learnt a lesson, or that it’s taught you to appreciate life.
In the past, my number one New Year’s resolution has been to “eat healthy.” This is normally ruined on day one or two of the new year when someone tempts me with some yummy food (which of course would be rude to refuse)! And then I remember the taste of chocolate or baking or crisps and, well, things go downhill from there.
In all seriousness though, I remember how my New Year’s resolution for 3 years in a row was to finish my degree. Each year, I started the semester super organized and prepared (and once I’d even done pre-study), only to later be told I needed some sort of surgery, or for a previous surgery to have caused me to need more. Of course you don’t all need to be constantly reminded of my hospital journey, as many of you have journeyed it with me… or you’ll have read about it a lot.
I have become very conscious that I talk a lot about my health, and I think this has sometimes confused those around me into thinking I am being negative. I have found, though, that because this is very much a part of who I am today, I am constantly reminded of it. I actually try to not mention my hospital life (especially in everyday conversation) and now that I am meeting new people in England it doesn’t even really factor into who I am. It’s an exciting prospect to be starting a new life, and while I’d like to just forget about the trauma I’ve been through, if I don’t acknowledge it and talk about it from time to time it will eat away at me.
So for now, my number one goal is to look after myself, and become settled properly back in the UK. Thanks to my wonderful family, I have been welcomed back with warm homes, food, brilliant festive occasions, a great job at World Vision, nannying work, and even a house next door for Elliot and I to move into when he arrives. So to say I have been spoilt and have landed on my feet whilst adjusting to this massive life change is an understatement. It is amazing how quickly things have fallen into place; now my goal for the next wee while is to make the most of this.
I have also just spent the last few days of 2014 with some great friends, reminding me to have fun and remember to be grateful. One of the best things I did last year was my keira365 challenge, where I took a photo each day of something I was grateful for. And from that challenge I really did learn that although everyday might not be good, there is something good in every day!
I also love reading everyone’s highlights of their past year! For me 2014 brought my first co-publication in a national medical journal, many wonderful adventures with friends, my bestie Sam coming back to NZ, my graduation, many great times with Heart Kids NZ, my engagement to my best friend and the love of my life, a trip to Perth, the news of Bobs and Scott having a baby early 2015, and of course my move to the UK.
I’m not denying that it’s also been one of the most difficult years of my life – it is just so easy to get bogged down in the negatives! Take last night for example. My first proper New Year’s Eve in London with my wonderful Kiwi friend Amelia. In true Keira fashion, it was totally unplanned but the night started off great! We had a great walk around the beautiful Covent Garden, a delicious Italian meal, the tastiest bottle of red wine I’ve had for a long time, and a five or so hour catch-up with many giggles. In spontaneous fashion, we then decided to watch the show Once
starring Ronan Keating (and oh boy was it good!)
However, before the performance, Amelia had been convinced that it was cheaper to buy a bottle of wine and unfortunately for her it went to her head/stomach far too quickly. She missed the whole second half of the performance, followed by a very sickly trip home! I have to say I certainly didn’t expect to be sitting outside the loos in a London train station eating chips I’d bought for Amelia but couldn’t convince her to eat on NYE – or that I’d be holding her hair back in an empty tube station… It was about 11pm when we got back to our hotel, and poor Amelia had definitely seen better days. She fell asleep on the bathroom floor and at this stage I concluded that our NYE night was definitely finished. Saying that, I still managed to watch the fireworks from our room looking over Hyde Park, whilst skyping Elliot at exactly midnight. I’m glad I rang Elliot, as he made me see the funny side to the situation, and I snapped out of thinking about how our night went “wrong”. In all reality, we still had a great time, and I was grateful to be warm and in bed for a good nights sleep. I woke up feeling great, with an energy boost to start the year off well. Whilst Amelia still wasn’t too positive about the evening, I’m sure when the alcohol wears off and given time she’ll see the funny side and laugh too. These memories are sometimes the best memories to have!
So along with looking after myself, I am going to make a conscious effort every day this year to remember the good things, even if everything at that time seems bleak. I know am immensely blessed with my life, and without sounding corny I am excited to see what God has in store for us this year! Recently I have had so many prayers answered, there have been many miracles that have happened, and it is a miracle that I am here to make new memories for 2015 – so let’s make it a good ‘un everyone!
Ahh, I have a lot of musings already and 24 hours of this year aren’t even up yet! Stay tuned for more posts in the near future (: