Thank you to Emily Sovich for this fabulous New Year’s post! May we all find our intentions.
I started taking yoga about a year ago, and every day (as soon as we were warmed up, but before we’d started the first real sequence) the teacher would prompt us to set an intention for the class. I liked being asked, but the truth is I was never very intentional about setting my intention. I just went with the first thought that popped into my head. Oddly enough, though, I had the same thought every day: Joy, I’d tell myself. I set an intention toward joy.
Looking back, it makes sense. A year ago, my husband had just come back from a series of long deployments. We hadn’t readjusted to life as a family; we’d barely readjusted to life in the United States. Not only that, but the girls were both in school. For the first time in my life, I was alone all day. I wasn’t doing very well, either. I wasn’t happy. I needed to reconnect with myself as myself — not as a wife, not as a mother — and I needed to redefine our family life, post-deployment.
A year later, everything’s better. As I struggled to find joy in physicality during yoga, I learned how to bring joy into my everyday life; and now, as my friends keep talking about setting their intentions for the new year, a new word keeps popping into my head during class. Pursue.
Like so many of the women I know, I set aside my independent ambitions when I had children. Being at the head of a family takes confidence and commitment, and when your children are young, when your husband’s deployed, or when you’re navigating life in a foreign country, it can take all the strength you have. For me, I gave so much of myself to my family that for a while I forgot there was anything else to want.
I’ve entered into a new phase of life though. My family is stable and whole, and I’ve rediscovered who I am on an independent level. My kids are older. My husband is home (at least for the time being). I have time to work, and I know what I want. If last year was transitional, then this is a year that calls for action. This is the year I’m going to pursue the dreams I’d almost forgotten, that heady mix of self and family. This is the year I’m going to draw closer to the life I want, to the person I am, and to the work I’ve always imagined.
What about you? What are your New Year’s intentions?
During her years as a military spouse, Emily Sovich has traveled through five continents and approximately thirty countries. She’s climbed the Great Wall of China, gone swimming with sharks in Australia, and ridden a camel around the pyramids in Egypt. She loves culture and adventure, but she’s happiest at home with a book in her hand, a child in her lap, and a cup of coffee on her bedside table.