It's raining as I write this, on the second day of the first month of a new year. Everything feels fresh and promising, while at the same time, there's a comfort to sitting here in my known space, my kids pottering around me, the cat licking herself, the chink of my husband's spoon against his cereal bowl…
It's a new year and a new beginning…and it's a comfortable, well-worn life, all at once. There's something truly beautiful about seeing the Old and the New sitting with each other, nodding across the way, eyes crinkling into smiles.
I haven't been here for a while, and it's been a busy, happy time. We have had so many adventures, exciting discoveries, disappointments, triumphs. In the meantime, life has sauntered and roared by…terrible and beautiful things have happened all around the world. I've watched, cried with grief and joy, laughed, and accepted.
A year ago, I was incredibly sick and impossibly sad. Today…my whole Self feels clear, aware, peaceful, mindful, joyful. At least, on most days. :)
Last year—the enormous and incredible 2012—was my year for getting better and staying better. Over the course of the year, my mantra became "BE BETTER."
I wrote it on a piece of paper early on, and stuck it to my wall
—where I have looked at it, thought it, lived it, every day since.
What does "Be Better" actually mean? Well, it has so many meanings. Wild and lovely layers of meaning.
It's not just about being, and staying healthy, although that is one huge, important aspect.
It's also about:
Doing good things. Doing mindful and caring things. Being compassionate and choosing kindness above all else. Choosing a path towards light and positivity, making choices that lift yourself and others up.
It also, for me, means being a vegan.
Being an animal advocate.
Being a pacifist.
Being a human rights defender.
Being an environmentalist.
Believing that the voiceless matter.
"Be Better," for my kids and husband, means all these things too. It also means that in our homeschooling path, we have chosen a type of learning that is sometimes labelled "natural learning," "child-led learning," and "unschooling." But for us, the way we homeschool is simply "Life." I used to worry about what homeschool label we fit under. Now, we just do. We read, we explore, and we create. We learn. Every day is different. Our homeschooling days feel organic, flowing, both simple and complicated, and they fit us perfectly.
So there you have it.
If you wanted to put us in a Box, a big BE BETTER box, this is what you'd find!
I guess my "Be Better" can be summed up by these three words:
1. Respect (always. Never stop for a second),
2. Love (always. Never stop for a second), and
Always. Never stop for a second!
It's that simple?
For me, it is.
And that means the title that's been waiting all this time to sit at the top of this space of mine
has finally arrived!
And I get a chance, on this brand new year, to reintroduce myself, make a new space,
and have a fresh beginning.
Where joy can bound out, along with my simple tales of the day, and pictures of cats, and snippets and beauty…
and I can share my BE BETTER with you…
with a smile this big
and hope this large
and love this kind
and peace flowing.
This is who I am. This is who we are.
It is so lovely to meet you!