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Atonement in the Summer

I’m one of those people who views the new year as an opportunity to create goals and opportunities to try new things.  It’s a new year so a new beginning.  But this January, I realized, I didn’t quite do that.  Instead, over the winter, I was in a funk.  I’ve been in a strange place for about 9-12 months, but it wasn’t until recently that I discovered this low point.

That’s when I discovered that I needed to create a new beginning for myself.

After a few weeks of self inflection, I realized I had a bit of atonement to do.

atonement

Have you ever thought to yourself, wow – I really could have treated that person differently?  If you just said, “no,” you are either Mother Teresa or completely fooling yourself.  And if you answered the former, please, can you come visit me for a week and teach me your ways?  We all are human, make mistakes, say things out of turn and don’t filter things the way they sound in our heads.  It’s totally ok, just own your stuff.

For me, I have spent the last 33 years of my life apologizing for my lack of filter at times.  It sucks.  In my head I sound like Snow White with birds chirping all around me, but when it comes out of my mouth, I sound like Cruella De Vil and out to steal poor, innocent puppies.

The past almost year, though, my Cruella De Vil has been kicked up a notch and I think I may have actually been cast in the next Disney movie, playing myself – as the greatest villain of all time.

I truly believe we all have seasons in life, peaks and valleys.  I just hit one of those valleys where I thought it wasn’t that low, but until I started trying to climb out of it, it was then that I realized just how low it really was.  And when I started looking back on it, I realized how badly I treated those around me when I was in it.

My attitude was just negative.  I mean we’re talking looking at the world through muddy, brown glasses.  Forget La Vie en Rose – my life was far from rose-colored.

The worst part was that I had great things going for me.  It wasn’t like my health declined and I lost my job, and I could say that I had awful things occurring all around.  Sure, I had a few hiccups along the way, but nothing I could say was worthy of a valley.

That’s when I knew I owed it to those around me who continued to support and encourage me to get out of this funk and start making amends.

So this month, in July, I decided to take a brave stance and start anew.  It wasn’t January 1st when all those memories from the year before can be forgotten.  It wasn’t Yom Kippur where my Jewish friends take a day of Atonement and are cleansed of all their sins.  It was just a month for me to seek out all of my friends who stood by my side and tell them how much their support meant to me this past year.  I can apologize for my negative and at times toxic thoughts that may have affected them, and to atone for my behavior, and start over.

So to my readers,  let’s start over a bit.  I challenge myself to be helpful to you.  To be a resource for those going through long distance relationships, and to other moms of teenagers because there isn’t enough dialogue around this age group (I think there are many of us hiding in closets drinking from wine bottles).  Let’s help each other be a better version of ourselves than we were yesterday.

Are you going through a peak or a valley?  Have you had a difficult time apologizing to someone in the past?  Have you had to just own your stuff even when it hurt? Share your stories below!

 

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