Tuesday, January 01, 2013
:: In 2012 ::
The notion that this year in review is being written on the first day of the new year instead of the last day of the old year (one day late) speaks volumes. I am sitting atop an unusually made up bed trying to figure out what to make of 2012 as though there is a phrase, a feeling, or a thought that could sum it up. It was neither up nor down, nor anywhere in between. Neither hard nor easy. Almost from the beginning, it did seem to require that I live very much in the present, and to live very intentionally, without the excessiveness of actual plans. I am reminded of the quote that goes something like planning is essential, plans are useless. And now with the luxury of looking back I can set some order to what it was. Perhaps it's this planning in reverse, as though the year were all intentional, that puts me at ease at the beginning of each new year.
:: I had the pleasure of being in many, many cities besides Nashville in 2012: Sacramento, Palm Springs, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Colorado Springs, Denver, Spokane, Tampa, Kansas City, Houston, New York, Asheville
:: Most of it was for work. But it only felt like work in the preparation. Actually getting to the sharing, speaking, sewing, quilting and creating time with hundreds of women across the country felt nothing like work at all but more an undeserved privilege.
:: No matter where I went or for how long, I missed home.
:: I held other people's babies.
:: I reminisced a great deal on all of our own baby memories.
:: While it will never feel completely natural, I think I finally got the hang of being myself (only with more makeup) in front of the camera through my work with Janome and with Creativebug. I am very proud of both projects and so elated that both will be moving forward into 2013.
:: I uncovered and documented so many family handmade treasures with the help of my mom. In my own efforts have never felt more convicted or more honored to carry the tradition of creativity onto new generations in our family.
:: I thought a great deal about all the women in my life who have contributed to who I am: my Greek grandmother Eleni, my American grandmother Anna Ruth, my mother Mary Lynn, my sister Eleni. All such resilient, beautiful, strong, talented, loving and character-filled women. Even with my grandmothers having passed, I have never felt them more present in my soul than this year.
:: We rescued an abandon pup, and named him Cash. He is a wily, darling, spirited boy with very little self control which has cost much patience. Though patience has been paid back time after time with the "thank you" I see in his eyes each time he holds his long gaze on me as I rub his furry white chest. I adore him.
:: We planted, harvested and ate from our first vegetable garden.
:: My children found new categories of chores to argue over, see above.
:: I turned 40.
:: I felt strong.
:: I managed to cry a great deal.
:: My mother spent a month with me while receiving treatments here for her lymphoma. Everyone kept saying how hard that must be for me, and how I must be so exhausted helping her through that and so on. The only thing I ever felt was glad that I could help, and happy to have her near. I think she would agree when I say that I continually forgot why she was here, we would just visit like we normally do, trading our knitting, sewing, crochet, or embroidery project status thoughts, only with the addition of a visit to the hospital every afternoon.
:: My mother continued to be an amazing inspiration to me and countless others in her journey and I learned from her that you can accept an unwanted fate and be entirely optimistic in equal and harmonious doses. I learned that she, the one suffering, somehow offers more strength and encouragement to the rest of us, than any of us can offer to her.
:: I prayed for a year where this illness is not a bullet point.
:: I did not (and will not) lose hope.
:: I have never felt more required of me in a given year, but also realized how that is the whole purpose of living.
:: I hosted a gorgeous group of dear, kind, and thoughtful women for a memorable weekend of making with our own two hands and a bit of our hearts too. All in celebration of my third book that published just a few days before. I am so proud of both endeavors.
:: I was given gifts for no reason at all, and felt humbled and thankful for the generosity of others.
:: I fell in love with my husband. Dozens of times.
:: I ran 5 miles. All at once.
:: I learned to knit.
:: I kept a secret.
:: I knit the above sweater for our new BABY due in June.
:: We will know next week whether to add boy buttons or girl buttons to the sweater.
:: Yes, number 7.
Maybe all 2012 was, in reality, was the makings of 2013. The behind the scenes of new paths, new lives and new stories still penciled in rough draft. I sit here, slightly reaching around the swell of my belly to write this, looking out at a gray, damp day. But I think of the seeds underground. The plants out there freezing and lying dormant absorbing that necessary chill only to awaken anew when the time comes. I remember that they will do that without any help or plans from me, they will do it because they are created for it.
May 2013 bring you all of your heart's desires, even in the smallest doses. I hope that you will be given all that you need to feel comfort in what it is you are created for. Thank you for being here with me and allowing me to have a comfortable space to invest my thoughts. I look forward to sharing this year with you.
All my love, Anna Maria xoxoxo