Dear 2018, You were the year I stopped breastfeeding my son, Bo. I’d never imagined nursing for 2 years and 10 months but I was proud and happy that I did. Our journey was ours and worked for us. We figured it out as we went along, together. I’ve learned with parenting that I feel most comfortable when I don’t try to impose expectations or arbitrary deadlines but just let things unfold naturally. You were the year I treated myself to yoga workshops, festivals, trips with girlfriends, and my first trip away with just Rick since Bo was born. It felt indulgent, it felt magical, it felt restorative and empowering. It was nice to return to many of the things I used to enjoy before becoming a mother. I felt fully ME again.
You were the year I prepared my body for another pregnancy. I worked hard to be healthy and strong and ready—and now here I am, 6 months pregnant for a second time. You were the year I found out we’d be having a girl—and I began to think about what that would mean, how I would parent two children, and what kind of future I want for them.
You were the year I realized that, now more than ever, silence is complacency— that defending the marginalized, the underprivileged, the voiceless, is necessary. I realized on a much deeper level how important it is to be respectful of other cultures, to be aware of the risks of appropriation as a white person—as a yoga teacher in the western world— and how I must strive to be genuine and inclusive, to educate the unaware, and to acknowledge my own past shortcomings as I aim to be better. I was reminded that what is right is not often what is easy— but we must always, ALWAYS strive for what is right.
While definitely not a new lesson, I was re-reminded that laughter is the best medicine, and that joy is possible, even when things are at their worst. And finally. I was reminded to surrender. To slow down when injured and run down. To listen. To learn. To breathe. I was reminded to love—myself, my family, my friends, my life, my journey, my body, my imperfections, the earth and everyone who inhabits it. Many thanks, 2018. Onward, with gratitude and love. Happy New Year to all my friends and family, near and far.