Happy New Year!

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Here we are: 2011! Wow. Can’t believe it but I think I say that every year. I have some of the same goals I want to accomplish this year and some new ones added to the list.
In the last year, I have learned that everyone is responsible for their own happiness. You cannot rely on your job, your significant other, your children, your parents, your friends, your education, or your hobbies to create happiness for you. YOU are the only one responsible for that. I have, for too long, allowed all of the other circumstances dictate my happiness. I allowed my situation or how someone treated me or what someone said to me influence my happiness that day, week, or month. My decision that I will carry forward with me this year is to make my own happiness every day. What others say to me or about me or what job I have or do not have or how my relationships are going or not going is not the reason to be happy or not. All I can be is myself, do the things I love, and contribute to the world around me in a positive manner. And so can you.
To move forward in life, you must actually take steps to move towards those goals you want. I used to be so good at this and I think once things got difficult, I stopped pushing. I just did the things that were easy to accomplish. But then there is no progression. Nobody gets anywhere doing things the easy way. Anyone who has achieved anything pushed themselves to get there. When I look back on my failures, I wonder if I gave up too easy. Should I have pushed longer or harder? I may never know but I don’t like living with the thought that maybe I could have done more or hung in there longer. So, this year, I am pushing to the limit!

I turned 30 in October. For some reason, that seems scary but in other ways, it’s just not that old. I think when you are in your 20’s, you think 30 is so old, and then you are supposed to “grow up” or something. But why? Why do we all think we should be in some particular ‘spot’ by the time we’re 30? I remember at the end of our senior year of high school, we made a video about where we saw ourselves in 5 or 10 years and almost everybody said they would be married with kids when they were 25 or 30. Some said they would be running their own companies. There was an array of situations but most spoke of having a family. I guess the American dream lives on in my generation but here I am, 30, unmarried and no kids. And I’m finding that is perfectly okay. There are many societies and cultures around the world that support the same notion as well. So again, I am deciding to be happy where I am and with what I have. I am grateful… I have a wonderful family and I have the world at my fingertips. I can do whatever I would like. I can go in any direction I want to. Being married with kids is not your ticket to everything. The world is ours for the taking. My brother has accomplished a substantial amount in his short 27 years, and he is not even close to being married or settling down. He has done so much for others as well. I hope in the next ten years, I can achieve what he has in the past five.

I must also make reference to my grandfather who left this world this past Wednesday around 1:45pm central time. He was very ready to go so, although it is sad, it feels right. And to speak to his life and all HE accomplished would be way too long for one blog. But in a nutshell, this man went to war for his country for 2 years, raised and provided for 5 children who have all become huge successes in their own communities and families, loved my Grandmother until the end, contributed largely to Dallas by building many, many homes for families throughout the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s, and always was the voice of reason – the patriarch of the family. The poor man had FOUR daughters….do you think he got many words in at the dinner table?? When Granddaddy spoke, you listened. He didn’t waste his breath on measly topics of conversation. What a man. I loved listening to his stories from the War, raising all those girls, dealing with the boys they brought home, and anything else he would offer his opinion on. So, here’s to Ed Miller! I am proud to call him Granddaddy.

I pray that you all had a wonderful holiday season. I found it to be relaxing and filling. I am in North Carolina one more week then I will begin my westward adventure with Annie! She is doing very well post-op and she and I will trek across the country to Arizona starting next Saturday, with a good hang-out session in Texas along the way.

Happy New Year!! May you find your own happiness each day no matter what your circumstances are or who is attempting to influence you either way!

Til next time…

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