Welcome to 2019, friends! Can you believe how quickly 2018 came to a close? I certainly can’t. There were so many things on my list to work on, finish up or create. Let me just be upfront and tell you… I didn’t get through half of them. And not for lack of trying, but for some reason 2018 was just a drudgy year.

Before we jump into that though, I want to share my “word for 2019” with you. Transparency. I want to bare parts of my heart, even when it is painful. Even when it’s confusing and most importantly when it is scaring me. The entire year of 2018 I battled with myself to “get it together” and be great. Worst idea ever. I needed help and I had no idea who to talk to or how to get from under myself. I found it hard to do absolutely anything but I smiled anyway. I’m not sure that was helpful. I needed to call my girls and ask for them to drop it all and come sit with me on the floor in the living room and just listen to me pour it out and sift through it. Together. If I learned nothing else in 2018, it’s that I can’t adequately help others if I’m untouchable. It’s time to celebrate the fact that your true friends will not only celebrate your harvest, they will help you PLANT it.

So in honor of my goal to be more transparent, let me share some of my 2018 battles.

  • January: Bone infection and major surgery that left me incapacitated for 3 months. If you know me, then you know that I abhor feeling weak and not being able to do for myself. Not only was I unable to even move by myself but I essentially had a catheter that went into my heart for daily injections of meds. If you bumped me the right way, that could have been it for me. Not to mention that my doctor is concerned that if I continue to have problems, the best route will be amputation. No thanks.
  • February: I announced that I would be writing a book to be released in 2019. Up to that point, I had completed a portion of my outline and had started on the first few chapters. I was constantly adding ideas and snippets to my draft. After the announcement? Nothing. Nada. Zip. I would open my computer and stare at the screen. I have always enjoyed writing and typically can pull something out with no issue. Not anymore. I have had writer’s block like you wouldn’t believe! I have slowly been crafting the new direction of the book but that has taken more time than I’d care to share. This has been one of the most humbling experiences because I feel like a failure.
  • March: I launched the podcast, fell right back into my crazy schedule, realized I’d gained a ton of weight (read that as I was HUGE) and was forced to re-evaluate some friendships. There is nothing harder or more painful than feeling like you are trying to balance life and someone is constantly poking you in the shoulder. Like their main goal is to see you come up short. In the end, I walked away from friendships that I had hoped would last forever but looking back I realize that the friendships had grown stale long before and we were all holding on for memories sake. Sometimes it’s best to care for someone enough to not call back and find out why they don’t want to be your friend. Clearly there is already enough on their plate. Give them the grace to focus on their preferred meal. It’s not personal. It’s growth.
  • April: Hit a rut mentally at my job and I haven’t gotten out of it yet. I love my job but I need something else. Been there before? I’m sure that you have. In honor of full disclosure, I struggled to find a job after Rob and I got married. It was the most draining and frustrating process I have ever endured. Being told over and over that you’re just not enough, you begin to believe the lie. Thankfully, I am reminded that God has provided above and beyond. With or without a paycheck. I’m good. Doesn’t mean that I’m not still looking for ways to change my employment trajectory though. So, if you’re hiring…hit your girl up! Lol
  • May-July: Began the groundwork for a huge project for AFGT and I figured that we were on the uptick and that I had gotten back into my groove. No such luck. I think that I became overwhelmed by how MUCH my vision involves. I’m a big picture person. I know how it is supposed to end but the steps to get it there bores me. I can’t lie. It does. Once I’ve made a decision that I want something done and I want to do it a certain way, that’s it. Miss me with the logistics. My team had to bring me back down to earth. That project is STILL waiting to be released and it frustrates me to no end that it’s not where it needs to be because I know what a blessing it would be to all of YOU. Silver lining? I was able to host my first dinner party for Rob’s birthday and it was a huge success! I had some ministry fails but quite a few marriage wins. I’ll take it.
  • August: Work was crazy. Let’s just leave it at that.
  • September: my favorite month. My anniversary month. I needed a break SO badly. But I actually did more that month than I typically allow. I reconnected with an old friend. Had professional pictures done. Had a few team meetings. Traveled for work. Stayed late at work. Took a tour of my dream house. Spent money on repairs. And to boot, I was in one of my best friend’s weddings on my anniversary! Not exactly a slow month.
  • October: I had what I thought was a pregnancy scare. Which was really just me being stressed out and throwing off my cycle. That was enough to get me to calm down though because there shall be NO more babies coming from this body! Lol
  • November: Family and Jack’s birthday were my main focus. I’ll also admit that I fell off my workout regimen. So I didn’t do as much on my to-do list as I had hoped but this month was actually one of the best months. Go figure!
  • December: I did quite a bit of traveling, tried to stay above water at work , half decorated my house (the tree was fab though!) failed at my Christmas Eve fete and took peeks at a gutted bathroom that I’m trying to get done by February 1st. Oh! I changed my eating habits too which has been life changing!

It’s a lot. Just looking at it makes me cringe. But can I share something with you? This is NOTHING compared to the constant feeling of heaviness, confusion and pain that I felt almost daily. And I could not shake it. Until in December my hubby and I made a huge decision (which I’ll share with you another day!) and I realized that I have to be intentional about getting back to me and focusing on what I know that God has called me to. It’s not easy but it is worthwhile. I deserve joy. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have to pursue it because I DO. I absolutely do.