The high today in Kansas City will be 9 degrees. Not the low, the high.
A year ago, Brooke and I sat down for dinner at a small, local restaurant in Palm City, FL. We called Florida home for a little over a year. 13 months to be exact.
It never once dipped to 9 degrees in those 13 months.
During this dinner, like we all do during the turn of each calendar year, we talked about goals, plans, dreams.
We were smack dab in the middle of a storm. Not a literal one, but a life storm.
Confusion, chaos, frustration, missed expectations, second-guesses. More questions than answers. More doubt than certainty. More pain than joy.
The plans from the year before were unraveling before our eyes. Our marriage was at a delicate spot.
With tears in our eyes, we discussed the hurt. The sadness. The void.
But we also started to realize that the several years leading up to this painful one were marked with more comfort and status quo than anything else.
Without realizing it, we had started living life on autopilot. Cruise control.
With a life lived on autopilot, we lacked the extreme highs but also protected ourselves from the extreme lows.
This wasn’t deliberate of course. Rather, it was a slow burn. A gradual shift. A movement more like a glacier than a wave.
Even though it was painful, we began to be aware that we were feeling again. We had allowed our hearts to grow cold for years but now we felt deep emotion.
The emotion was stinging and painful, but at least we were feeling it.
Though hard, we were alive. And that was significant.
We were no longer merely existing, we were living. And daring greatly.
It was during this dinner when we acknowledged that we’d rather be sailing on the sea, turbulent as it may be, than watching someone else’s ship from the shore.
2014 for us, we said, was going to be our “year of hope.”
Not hope for perfection, comfort or ease. Although I’d love a big dose of those things. But rather a hope for adventure, joy, purpose and significance.
A few short months later, we moved back home. To Kansas City. I took a new job, a great job that I enjoy. We bought a new, old house. Things started to take shape. Circumstances started to change. The winds died down a bit, but we are still sailing.
I have huge dreams for 2015. Written goals, best year ever, all those things. I’ve read a ton of blog posts about efficiency, maximizing my time, getting my body in better shape.
All of that is great. But I know the storm will come again. The winds will rise up. The ship will get off course. Salt water will sting our eyes and burn our lips.
And in that moment, because it’s coming, I’m choosing hope.
Maybe more than a hundred tips and tricks for a better year, perhaps you need to declare 2015 to be your “year of hope”.
Because it’s going to be ours again too.
Where are you hopeful heading in these early days of 2015?