The New Year is just upon on us and for the last week or so I have been contemplating, as I do each year, where I am and where I wish to see my life go in 2007.
This past week has been an unusual week, as I have been pondering these thoughts, as my sister in law (my husbandâ€™s sister) who just turned 50 this past May, lost her battle, Friday, after a seven year battle fighting cancer.
Seven years ago, Martha was told she had a year and a half to live. Focused on all her reasons to live she decided not to tell her husband or her family the news; but instead chose to live her life and make the most out of it, while she lead her family and extended family to believe she was in remission.
For Martha that meant fighting her battle with cancer largely alone, to be here on earth for her husband and her then 9, 10 and 16 year old sons whom now have grown into young men at 16, 17 and 23; as they sat by her side when she took her last breath.
It was only this week, with her husband at her side, that she told him that she had outlived her diagnosis significantly.
As someone who has lost many family members in my life, I have come to a new understanding, with each loss, of the power of the time we have here to live each day and year to the fullest. Perhaps with Marthaâ€™s passing, during this holiday week, as I reflect on what lies ahead for me in my New Year, makes this even more poignant.
Often, I think it is easy in our materialistic, self-serving, instant gratification world, to forget that true satisfaction and peace for each of us comes from making a difference in the lives of others.
Being creative or artistic is a gift that is meant to serve others. It is a responsibility we have, for having been given the gift, to do something with our creativity and artistry that impacts others powerfully. By doing so, the world rewards us with abundance and we thrive (thatâ€™s how we know we are on the right path).
When I consider my own responsibilities, to use my gifts to make a difference in the lives of others, it has brought me to know what in 2007 I need to accomplish, or will strive to accomplish, to bring myself one step closer to furthering how much and how often I am able to help others through my creativity and artistry.
Some of those things I will work on in 2007 include:
â€¢ Extending myself to those who are trying new things and need the help I have to give.
â€¢ Teaching and learning simultaneously as often as possible-they work together and are more powerful to both the receiver and giver when together.
â€¢ Following paths that open to me in my life, using the influences of others I respect and admire, as the springboard for personal growth.
â€¢ Learning new ways to express my creativity, which will include learning how to become a jazz singer, developing workshops focusing on the development of creativity as a life pursuit and successfully building an arts ensemble that roots lie in teaching others how to live a creative life and thrive.
While I have no idea if I have a year and a half, seven years or many more left to live, I do know that I will work as hard as ever to embrace who I am and to develop the most potent ways possible that I can impact the lives of others in a positive, healthy and meaningful way.
I hope you will consider doing the same. Life is short. Make the most out of your 2007.