This is what I started with, a photo of two heads and two rocks in a pottery bowl:
This is where I ended up:
My nephew sent me a text with this quote in it on the morning I was waiting to have my port put in.
It was a reminder to me, that I was still alive, in spite of the battle I was entering. And it continues to remind me that I am still alive. I have, at times, taken that fact for granted, and have not appreciated the life I have.
It's a strange thing, though--let the life you take for granted be threatened and see how quickly your whole attitude toward your life can change.
Suddenly, I see love in my life. I see people who care and offer their own particular brand of support and encouragement. I always knew it was there, but now there is a new appreciation for the connections and the feeling of being somehow held up by the love and kindness of others.
And from somewhere, there comes a new motivation to live better and healthier, and to take care of things in my life that have been too long neglected.
I'm writing this post now on my laptop while sitting up in my bed and looking out on a bedroom that is closer to being a sanctuary than it has been in years. A shelf in the closet has been fixed and clothes that were once stacked all around the room are now hanging in the closet. Clutter is gone, bags of clothing that was too large have been brought to the goodwill store, furniture has been dusted, there is a new coverlet on the bed, and there is a new to me love seat on the side wall that is ready for sitting.
This was one of the things I wanted to do in the new year. There is still work to be done, but there has been a lot of progress made, and for that, I am grateful.
In writing that about there still being work to be done, I recognize a habit that needs to be broken. I have a strong tendency to look at what all I have not done, or how what I have done is not perfect (and in this case, not exactly pristine designer home quality improvement) and to bemoan that "failure," while forgetting all about appreciating (and celebrating) the progress I have made.
(Note to self: Notice and appreciate your progress first, then decide what else you want to do, or decide you have done all you really wanted to do. Stop making the undone things in your life out to be failures.)
It's weird. I'm in the middle of a major storm in my life and yet I feel more alive than I have felt in a very long time.