“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.” ― T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets
I feel I should give you fair warning. We’re going through a lot of lasts these days as we ready ourselves for retirement. It finds me with rich memories that dampen my eyes and new questions that can’t be answered – yet. At times, it feels like I’m trying to keep my balance while on a rocking boat. I love the water but those waves remind you to steady your balance and that sometimes you need to let the waves carry you.
I’m giving you warning because I feel as if I’m repeating myself and talking too much about this part of our life. I don’t want to be that person but it’s taking up a lot of mental space these days. I’m trying to get a jump on the packing well in advance so we can be ready. So far, that’s the easy part. I’m also trying to focus more on being emotionally ready and that’s where it gets tricky.
We had a wonderful time over the holidays with family being in and out and allowing us to pivot our attention on being together. There is always a lot of laughter, too much food and satisfied exhaustion from staying on the go.
The decorations have been packed away and our house looks bare in comparison to its recent festive glow. The linens have been washed from our full house. The fridge still holds some leftovers daring me to do some creative cooking.
Getting ready for the next thing always starts with some cleaning up, some putting away, and some letting go.
I need toclean up my habits which perennially include drink more water, move more, and (this year) eat less.
I need to put away my attitude…the one that is full of sass and let go of my expectations of others.
I also want to remember to embrace what is before me. So far, I have a clear view of what is behind and only vague uncertainties about what is ahead. I can let it come or I can choose to welcome new possibilities. Embrace is the word that called out to me as a gentle guide for this season. It’s the posture I want to guide me to a new readiness. Arms wide open.