Hello, luvs. 🙂 I’m writing to you this evening surrounded by library books and back issues of Victoria magazine and Christmas cds and flickering candles. A hot cup of sweet orange tea is brewing as I huddle under a quilt and heating pad to keep warm. It’s a wonderfully cozy night. The sort of night I hope to have many of in the months and years to come.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking since I got home from my travels. I learned a lot of things on these trips, not the least of which was that somehow I had well and truly become a workaholic. In my attempts to get out of debt, pay mounting medical bills, and meet unnecessarily lofty expectations I had for myself, I had taken on one full-time job and four part-time jobs. To do it all I was getting 4-5 hours sleep a night and working myself silly.
Needless to say, when my brother Ryan sent me a ticket to fly to Amsterdam to spend Christmas and New Year’s with my family, I cried. 🙂 I was so happy, but also exhausted, worn out, utterly done in. All I wanted to do was sleep, stare out the window and wander aimlessly doing anything but work. So I did.
I enjoyed every bloomin’ moment of that trip: blizzards, long walks in the icy dunes, eating my siblings’ delish homemade food, visits over foamy coffee, playing Settlers of Catan, watching old movies, meeting new and old friends for good ol’ chats, and wandering the streets of the Netherlands and Germany. It was wonderful.
When a dear friend gave me a plane ticket for Australia the day after I got home, I cried again. 🙂 I could hardly believe such kindness.
By then I was starting to perk up. After a couple of weeks on my Aussie friends’ farms eating fresh eggs and fruit, going for walks and getting lots of sleep, I could think about work again without cringing, and felt my creativity and enthusiasm coming back. Instead of plotting out jobs, assignments and goals, I realized how much I missed reading good stories, listening to new music, watch great movies, just sitting and watching the sunset, going to bed early, taking walks, spending leisurely time with dear ones. I wanted to live beautifully again.
Instead of a To-Do List, I started writing a Dream List – the one I told you about here earlier this week. It wasn’t so much about what I want to accomplish, but more how I want my life to look, feel, and be. I don’t want to be a workaholic. I don’t want to be constantly worrying about finances and debt. I DO want to live a happy, peaceful life with people I love and who love me back, with enough to meet my needs and share with others.
Now I’m back home in Washington, learning how to live what’s in my heart. I’ve thought long and hard through my priorities and responsibilities, and a lot of things have been shifted into the “Not Now” and “Maybe Never But That’s OK” piles. I’ve looked at my budget and figured out ways to cut costs so I don’t have to work so much.
And I’m happy because the things in the Important Pile, really are. 🙂
What is one thing you do each day that makes you happy?