I always experience this time of the year as a pause – a stepping stone between past and future where there is the space to be momentarily very much present in the here and now. I’m not a huge fan of the large public celebrations that sit just before and just after this week. But they do produce this wonderful suspension of “business as usual” that I enjoy so much.
Today I am reflecting on the year that was and I learned from it. My biggest lesson has been about the danger of assuming that what you have planned will come to pass. I spent much of the year with a sense of loss – no graduation ceremony to mark the end of my doctoral studies, no international travel to speak at conferences, the absence of the buzz I get from face-to-face teaching… I had no legitimate reason to expect that any of those things were going to – indeed SHOULD have – happened. What a difference it would have made to my year to come to an acceptance that all things were the way they were meant to be for me! I got there eventually….
I’m also setting intentions for the year to come. I know that there will be significant changes ahead for me. 2020 has taught me to not get too far ahead of myself in imaging how the future will unfold. I intend to hold my plans for the future lightly, and accept that what is, is what is, and there is joy to be had in what is happening right now. At the same time, it is my intention to step out once again on a strong and determined path to pursue a change agenda in maternity care, in small ways and in big ways. There is much to be done to make it better and many things I need to learn to be effective. I know the direction I want to head in even if the details are yet to be figured out.
I have thoroughly enjoyed sharing my thoughts with you – the reader of this blog – throughout the year. I hope you also get to enjoy a pause this week.