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I Promise Me

Stones on the beach, Massachusetts, summer '09

When the calendar turned to January and the new year began, I chose a word which would guide me through the next three hundred and sixty five days: emerge. Personally, 2009 was a year of shame, procrastination, and fear, and this year I am determined to turn that around and build something good in my life. To emerge is to "appear, bud, come forth, materialize, start"; for me, it means rising from fear, from self-doubt, from excuses and negativity and distraction and becoming something far more beautiful and strong.

Part of this process means sorting out those things that are important from those that are not. What have I been focusing on that doesn't deserve my attention? To which things do I need to shift my energy? What qualities and values do I want to make an unchanging part of my life?

Perseverance, belief in myself and my dreams, trust, movement, leaps of faith - these are the things that I know I want to hold onto tightly. I want to risk more and fear less. I want to jump into the future and not look back, facing and overcoming each obstacle one at a time.

Every long journey begins with a single step. Today, I need to make choices, however small, that reflect the new life I have chosen. I need to make decisions as they come and try to not get stuck in a panic over whether I have made the right one. In each moment I resolve to do my best to create a life of which I am proud, and I will try my damnedest to neither compromise for others nor to make excuses.

Whew! I'm terrified. Now, where can I begin?

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