Greeting 2022 with Gratitude and Peace

Are you standing strong or has the undertow of 2021 knocked you flat?

I dunno about you, but 2021 left me scratching my head, filled with a surreal sense of standing on a shore between the past and the future as I watched the continued shifting sands of reality  nearly knock me off my feet.

Like many, my first thought was ‘good riddance’ to the tsunami we called 2021. Falling asleep beside David as we welcomed the new year in behind our drooping eyelids while neighbors somewhere around the corner shot off fireworks, I questioned what was so horrible about 2021? What treasures could I uncover beneath the shifting sands to carry into the new year?

And as I dug deep I found Gratitude. So I said farewell to 2021 with thanks. 2021 was filled with a lot of goodness, despite everything else. And that’s what I’m bringing into 2022. Good thoughts. Appreciation. And Hope.

The start of 2021 introduced an old acquaintance, and for the third time in my life I defeated cancer. No lie, I was afraid. But I did not let my fear consume me. I forged on and found empowerment. A year later I can honestly say that I am kick ass and unstoppable!

Throughout the year, we said good bye to  loved ones—through death, through their moving away, and just life. But we also said hello to so many family and friends we got to meet for the first time, see for the first time in a long time, and just be around throughout summer days that brought a sense of security as we met outside and pandemic infections and death rates dropped.

In February, we lost David’s mom, and as heartbreaking as it was, we know she is at peace and not suffering anymore. And her death brought a lot of loved ones into our lives who we had lost touch with over the years.

Mom Phillips

I got to reconnect with my kin down south, including my grandmother of 96 years, and rellies we’ve not seen in decades. And I got to meet their children and children’s children and it was mindblowing.

Me and Mother, July 2021

We survived another year of the pandemic. We kept our jobs.

I released LOVE IN THE FOREST, Book 1 of the Earth and Sky series; signed the contract with Soul Mate Publishing for Book 2, LIFE IS FOR LIVING, and began writing Book 3, LOST IN YOUR RHYTHM.

Book 1 of the Earth and Sky Series released by Soul Mate Publishing!

I got accepted into a social work Master’s Program (then declined due to finances). But still, I GOT ACCEPTED INTO A MASTERS PROGRAM AT 58 YEARS OLD. Mind blowing.

My educational goals were not hindered by that decision, as I took a death midwifery training course, which was something I’ve wanted to do for more than a decade.

We got to kayak (which we did not get to do in 2020), drum, garden. We camped in our Forevermore a few times and had a blast.

Kayaking with my love on the Mohawk River.

We got to see STOMP! at the Stanley Theater in Utica, which was very cool, because my hero Jack Issa in LOST IN YOUR RHYTHM is a former THUMP! performer, so I got to see “him” in action.

STOMP! at the Stanley Theater!

We haven’t seen the kids since Thanksgiving, due to COVID exposures and their insistence to keep me safe. We will see one another in the new year, and that thought keeps me strong.

Not seeing them helped me understand myself a lot better, and helped me explore what it means to be a Pagan in a very Christian world. This year, without the kids, Solstice was our main holiday except for the awesome Christmas Eve celebration my sister holds each year. With just David and I focusing on Solstice, we found a sense of peace, hope, love, and stability. We acknowledged the one constant that we could hold on to in this crazy, ever-changing world that of late has been so filled with uncertainty. Faith. In each other, our spiritual path, and the promise of tomorrow that is kept with each rising sun.

As we move forward into 2022, I am filled with a sense of peace, hope, love, and most importantly, an understanding that as long as we stay focused on the positives that surround us, as long as we live honestly and kindly, we will be okay.

2022 will bring what we set our intentions for regardless of what happens. Peace is not found in an absence of strife, but in how we handle that strife.

I wish you a year filled with success, health, wealth, happiness, and above all, Peace.

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