resolutions when you’re in the trenches

New Year, New Me! The declarations of millions wanting to change their lives, throw everything out Marie Kondo-style, and lose a trillion pounds rang out on 1/1/2019. Almost in unison, precisely at midnight. You may have had a few, too. Maybe they’re goals for you. Maybe drastic changes. Resolutions to change for the better are good, provided they are in an attainable and healthy context. If you are one of the thousands struggling with chronic disease or a mental health crisis such as anxiety or depression, it’s easy to be completely overwhelmed with guilt when we: A.) Don’t make any resolutions, blow it off, and continue to exist in our perpetually repetitive ways, or B.) Make a million handwritten resolutions (in our very favorite gel pen on beautiful stationary like those Instagram bloggers do) and fail. Each one of them. Be it fail completely or fail to meet the time requirement, we fail. Why does it have to be so black and white? Why do we feel like we have so much to make up for? Is it just the script that we have been made to feel that since we are sick, or sad, or scared, we somehow owe more just to be a functioning equal in society? This type of thinking is destructive and tears our already taxed mental health apart. Whether you’re currently struggling physically, you’re postpartum, or you’re a perfectly healthy individual just trying to make it in the world – you are under no obligations to anyone or anything to hold tight and succeed under these ‘resolutions’ that have no bearing on any time clock. We are ever changing, ever growing, ever receding. It helped my internal dialogue to picture my ‘view of self’ as a river in the seasons. In the summer and hardship, I may dry, pulling back in fear or uncertainty, trying to make decisions to direct my life one way. Or, in the winter/autumn months: months of growth and change – rising, rising, rising and ebbing to a flow that isn’t my own. But even in the middle of all this change and recession, I still ask you to look at the One who controls your seasons and time. Your ebb, flow, and tempo. Are the goals aligned with His own? Is your mission to drop ‘that nasty baby weight’ healthy for you holistically, mentally, physically? Is it worth ripping ourselves to shreds when we inevitably fail in the name of being human? Resolve to do a Bible Study every other day. Resolve to do a good deed not daily, but weekly. Resolve to make your coffee as you pray in the morning – God doesn’t forget us, we shouldn’t forget him either. Resolve to survive. Resolve to live.  We get up. We regain our balance. We put one foot in front of the other. And we try again. Happy New Year! May this year bring you peace and a renewed vigor to pursue your life’s passions. Life is too short.

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