“This year, my resolution is not to sneeze!” my husband announced minutes before midnight on New Year’s Eve. “And I bet I maintain my resolution longer than everyone!”
I couldn’t help but laugh at the absurdity of his statement, but I also wondered whether it was true. It’s insanely hard to break bad habits, overcome challenges and change in general.
Then, less than 3 minutes into 2014, I sneezed loud enough that it stopped a roomful of conversation and everyone erupted into laughter.
Good thing it hadn’t been my resolution, yikes.
It made me wonder whether I had made a dent on my goals last year. Truthfully, I couldn’t remember what I had promised myself at the start of 2013. The usual? To get more organized, eat healthier and spend more time with the people I love?
Rinse, wash, repeat?
As I’m rapidly approaching my late 30s, the years do tend to feel a little cyclical and it’s easy to fall into a routine. But you know what? I’ve decided that maybe that’s okay. Maybe that’s true comfort. Maybe, just maybe, I’ve gained the ability to be okay with who I am and how I live.
Maybe it’s okay that there’s a pile of clutter on the kitchen counter near the fridge no matter what I do to tame it. Maybe it’s okay to enjoy the heck out of a cup of coffee with entirely too much sugar. And maybe it’s okay that I solely use my running sneakers for walking my daughter to the bus stop. (Although some mornings it does feel like a race.)
Sure, there’s always room for improvement. And things would be a little boring without setting goals and personal challenges. But instead of swearing off ice cream, vowing to finish a marathon or planning to spend less time responding to emails — all of which I’d be doomed to fail — I think I’ll just try to do the best I can, embrace challenges when they arise and savor the moments that matter.
So this year you won’t find me pouring over magazines to “kick clutter to the curb” or joining a gym. You won’t find me depriving myself of the things I love or beating myself up for having to work. Or even making excuses.
This year I’ve decided to embrace me and everything that comes with it. My house that sometimes has popcorn kernels on the floor around the couch. My kids who are usually too loud at restaurants. And even my unorganized closet because I can’t possibly keep up with Pinterest.
You’ll find me lingering longer in pajamas on the weekends, holding hands with my husband while we’re walking our kids to the park, occasionally indulging in an overpriced calorie-laden dessert, and deciding to walk past a dryer full of clean clothes when it’s time to sit down and fire up the DVR.
Resolutions are great, but so is being comfortable in your own skin. Maybe we’re all okay just the way we are — flaws, weird habits and all.
For the record, my husband lasted an impressive 5 and a half days. Despite his most valiant efforts, he came to the conclusion that sneezing is sometimes inevitable.
So I’ll be the first to say, “Bless you.” Don’t change a thing.