Digging for Joy

“Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain…To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life not to deny my humanity but embrace it.” Kevyn Aucoin

Today, I decide to choose joy. 2020 was a tough year for almost everyone. Maybe except Amazon. I have spent a lot of the later part of 2020 beating myself up for not being motivated enough. Not accomplishing enough. Sitting too much. Watching too much TV. Not working on art enough. Not writing my blog enough. Really what I was telling myself was that I was not enough. Today, I am calling myself out on that. What I did do in 2020 was survive a really tough year, and that my friend, is enough.

Every year, I have a tradition of choosing a word to work on for the upcoming year. I start by looking back at my journals and searching for clues about what I would like to uncover more of in my life for 2021. An overwhelming theme seemed to be worry and fear from this past year. I certainly don’t want more of that for this upcoming one. I certainly do not want more fear of a virus, more worry over my health, or more sadness over not being able to see family and friends. Many of us, especially those of us who are immune-compromised, had a lonely year without friends and extended family. Do we want more of that? Absolutely not. What I want more than anything for 2021, is to rid myself of all of those negative feelings. What I want is happiness, connection, family but most of all, joy. I want more joy in my life.

I love the quote that I started with today. I believe life is about nothing but choices. However, they do not always come easily. We have to fight to choose things that will bring us what we want and will start to shift our focus on to the things in our life that we want and not those we don’t. If I continue to write in my journal about the things in my life that are lacking and not ideal, that will continue to be what I am aware of in my life. I spent some more time looking through my journal. I started to notice new things that were written in it. I started to look for successes. I continued to take part in two support groups over Zoom all year. I learned what Zoom was and how to use it. I learned to knit. I became better friends with certain people. We managed to spend much less and save much more. Our dog had a successful surgery. I spent Christmas with every member of our family, be it virtually.

When you switch your perspective on what you are looking for in your life. apparently you may find that you have had a year of joy, it just looks different than you anticipated last year when you set your sites on ease (I know. The universe was certainly testing me) I didn’t realize that what I would experience was joy through virtual community and strengthened health.

Even if nothing else was accomplished, it is more than enough to have survived this crazy pandemic year. Many did not, though through no fault of their own. We should celebrate and find the joy in just that fact. We overcame difficulties and are still here fighting to get back what we have lost. Whether it is through a vaccine, wearing a mask, or having some wine on Zoom with some friends or family to restore our sense of community.

Here’s to a wonderful upcoming year. Keep your eyes open for all that brings you joy. Even if you have to dig a bit for it. The painting I started with was the first painting I have done since last February. My joy-searching girl needed to be excavated from the chaotic colors that I started by slapping down trying to find what I was searching for. She still a managed to find her way out.

So will I and so will you. Thank you for continuing to follow me during this year.

Much joy,


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