Bonne Année

Happy New Year.

Hello.

Felicitations.

Welcome to 2018.

So, I spent the month of December fighting off one germ after another…as did the rest of my household…so if you still haven’t gotten our Christmas card…many apologies…seriously, we were sick. I did the best I could under the circumstances, but I admit, if I could have mailed anything out on Christmas Day…it would have still gone out a day later…that’s how things were around here.

Other than prompts, I did not post very much in December. One reason…sick…but another reason was and is…I needed the time to rest. I have a lot of plans for 2018…which I will reveal in time here…but I needed the space and the time to ground into things.

Which brings me to my word of the year for 2018. I’ve known it since October…but I fought it until past Thanksgiving because I don’t like the way it initially sounds to my ear. I had to sit with it and delve into it to really want to allow it to enter into my psyche and into my world.

Settle in.

That’s my ‘word’ of the year.

When I was investigating and planning for 2018, ‘settle in’ came up pretty quickly. I don’t like the word ‘settle’. I don’t want to settle. I have spent a great deal of my life settling for less than I wanted in many arenas. The idea that I ‘should’ spend 2018 ‘settling’ grated on my nerves. It made me angry. I refused to look at it. I refused to accept it. I moved past that and tried to find other words…and nothing came. So I went on through the other things I was doing. At one point, I simply stopped thinking about, stopped fighting about it, stopped growling about it…and I did more work around things and let it go.

Settle in came back, again and again. Eventually, with a great deal of extraneous context, I started to allow settle in…in.

Settling in is NOT about settling for less. It is about…sinking into my world, into my life. Putting down roots. Drawing into the depths of me once again.

For eight years now, maybe, give or take, I have been held enthrall to the rites of fertility. I have had miscarriages. I have had my now five-year-old little golden child. I lost a child after we had our 5yo. I am still in grieving. However, with a newborn, into toddler, in the midst of my grief, in the midst of a chronic illness that became triggered and escalated during all the other things going on…I had to let go of keeping house, for the most part, and allow my teenager and partner to take over things. I am not saying I didn’t do anything, but what I did was vastly different from what I used to do. Now, I am slowly getting back into my homekeeping once again.

Uhm, let’s just say, not blaming my partner here, because we both trusted the teen-ager, even though we should have known better, or checked up on her more vigorously, I am in shock by how terrible things are. We have a basement—we have wooden shelves in the basement—this is where we keep party supplies, Easter décor, Halloween décor, Christmas decor—you get the idea…for Halloween in 2017—we were unable to find all of the boxes of decoration (it is our favorite time of year here)…for Christmas, we could not find even more boxes…half of the things that are my traditional pieces to have out…we have no clue where they are. Am I talking 2 and 3 inch big decorations? No. I am talking a 2ft tall cloth Santa mounted on wood so he stands alone. I am talking an 18-inch tall soft snowman that is our advent calendar. I am talking a roughly 18-inch tall Christmas tree made of dowelling and cloth and lace. Why are these things lost? Because we trusted the now 16yo to take boxes downstairs and put them away, unaided. She was 15 when we last trusted her to do this…and now…seriously…we can’t figure out where they are or what she did…and neither can she.

So, one thing that settling in (before I go off on a tirade about the teenager) this year will be for me is reclaiming my Domesticity. That means, filing through things, one space at a time. I will be purging, organizing, clearing, creating…taking this domicile from House to Home, to the best of my ability, as slowly as I need to go, based on my health and other circumstances.

For me it also means…settling into me once again…through pregnancy and grief and illness, I have lost my muchness..I need to get that back. That for me means art, reading, writing, knitting, poetry, walking…silence…rest…Yoga…delving into the Core that is me…and that Core does depend upon my environment being clean and clear, as much as possible…so again back to the Domesticity being regained and held…it means cooking again…it means sewing again…it means…more sleep…more stretching…more of what makes me me…and all of this with the rest of my family, especially my 5yo, holding on …and helping as much as they can.

This year, D (5yo) will be learning to read and write—he tells me – and everyone else – this…and not just because we are offering him an allowance of $1 a week to do so…although I am sure that is helping…math he can be quite clear on…especially when we are in a store and he wants to buy something…so we shall be settling in deeper into his education.

He has also agreed to work through LifeBook 2018 with me, especially after he heard there will be Yoga lessons. He loves Yoga. We’ll see if he takes to the art part as much as he used to when he was smaller. And this will be a settling in of our relationship, broadening it to a deeper level—which is always welcome.

So, there you go…my word of the year: Settle In…I haven’t made art around this word yet, beyond some initial sketching…so I will be posting that soon…erm…soon-ish….

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