Swapping out this year's day planner for the next, I marveled at all the things I had said I wanted in January that had come to fruition. Then I saw my intention scribbled across the top of page one––faith and trust.
"Jeez, did I get what I asked for," I somewhat painfully laughed to myself, "Next year, I need to set an easier intention!"
Early in the year, as I was debating faith with a wise elder, she paused and said, "Maybe faith is trusting grace."
It was like a truth bomb exploded in the coffee shop where we sat. The word that had been following me around finally came into focus.
A different wise elder and self-proclaimed atheist stood at the pulpit of my church, referring to God only as the word grace the Sunday before.
A week before that, I officially dropped the "self-love coach" title from my byline and replaced it with "self-grace coaching and healing."
The universe had my attention.
One of the more challenging years of my life; my own wise words from last year's New Year's essay mocked me as I sojourned from one painful growth point to the next.
"It's the simple but hardly ever easy process of showing up, doing the next indicated action, and trusting something bigger than myself by letting go of the results."
So I leaned into grace the best I could, grateful for her wide girth as I flailed between her borders.
By summer, ease of life came over me and, with it, some naivety. Surely, the tough bits were behind me, and I learned enough about faith for one year.
Alas, there were still a few unfinished growth opportunities ahead.
As the second year of school started, everything in my body resisted returning to Miami for class. I didn't know why but knew I had to trust it. I sent a letter and withdrew from the program.
Next, I was called to choose myself in a deeper way than I ever had before. I walked away from a kind, clever, funny, tall man who, for reasons unclear to me, could not show up in the relationship. My heart hurts when I think of him.
As the winter solstice arrives, I am no clearer on how I will get the skills I want or find the romantic relationship I desire. But after a year, chock-full of evidence that it will all work out in a way I could never imagine, I know my job is to not worry about the how.
To be honest, some days, that's easier than others.
But then grace shows up in unexpected ways. Like yesterday, when I got in my car, Spotify spontaneously started playing "Like a Diamond" by Tom Petty. I heard these lyrics for what felt like the first time:
So this is me, praying to grace and hoping she's real.
And also setting an intention to experience more JOY in the upcoming year ;)