The Year to Connect

Jessica challenged me to think of a word for 2019. I’ve already been telling my team that “flexibility” is our word for 2019. We have numerous new initiatives that will require flexibility in the way we deliver training and in our design. In my personal life, however, I think I’m flexible enough. I can bend without breaking through the most challenging of times and stay grounded throughout.

This year I think my word will be “connect”. After last year’s long runs and the relocation to Michigan, I’ve felt more lonely than I’d like. This is a small town, so it’s a little hard to meet like-minded people. I’m making headway but it’s slower than usual. I want to reach out more. My vacations will be tribal, and my adventures will be more social.

I’ve signed up for a women’s writing retreat in Oregon this spring, and in the next couple of weeks I’m going to northern Michigan on a women’s retreat for snowshoeing, skiing and sipping hot chocolate by the fire. I hope to make some new friends. And, I’m sure I will sign up for the Wanderlust trips this year. I hear they are doing another Pictured Rocks backpack. I met a lot of new friends on last year’s adventures.

On New Year’s Day, I went to my friend Cheryl’s house for her annual soup party. Last year I only knew Cheryl. This year, I ran into a man that had gone to Pictured Rocks with us, a man I’d met at the Buddhist Sangha and my acupuncturist. I was so surprised to see them and especially to see them all in the same place. But it told me that my tribe is forming, and it’s only a matter of time before this wintry place feels like home.

Ashok was sniffing something out…..

We had our first big storm of the season last night. It was so fun to see Ashok bounding through the yard of snow up to her tummy first thing. All day she looked at me excitedly as if to remind me that it snowed last night. “Let’s go hiking, Momma! It snowed!” After doing my yoga, completing my fit camp circuit and shoveling my driveway, we took off for a walk on the pier.

A runner crunched by on the snowy road in a neon yellow shirt. Teenagers giggled while they broke icicles off the railing to toss into Lake Michigan. It looked weird for the lake to be unfrozen in January. By tomorrow morning, the sub-zero temperatures should begin to harden the water’s surface. I’m already excited to load up Ashok and head to a trail to experience the snowy quiet of a winter forest.

I have volunteered to do a podcast for Wanderlust. I’m working with the social media director to come up with topics. I’ve been wanting to try the format but did not want to do it on my own. I’d rather collaborate with somebody so we can all learn together. If I like it, I might think of adding a podcast to my Midlife Moments platform. Interviewing like-minded people or telling stories of Michigan might be fun. Either way, it would encourage me to get out and meet people and have adventures to share.

I am tired. I exercised strenuously today and shoveled a ton of snow. I’m grateful to be strong enough to do that and still enjoy the day. I made a wonderful sausage and lentil soup for dinner, and I’ve spent a relaxing evening reading a book called “The Living Great Lakes”. Michigan is truly a remarkable place. I am grateful to be here. It is a gift to have snow on the ground. I am committed to enjoying it. Like everything else, this, too, shall pass.

Good night, everybody. I’m sort of noodling getting out in the woods tomorrow night to see that lunar eclipse. Is anyone else doing that?

#getoffyourass #ywadedicate #puremichigan

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