Proud of you

I recently listened to an episode from Pursuit with Purpose podcast, where Sunny Lenarduzzi shared that she writes herself a letter about how proud she is of herself and I thought it would be a great idea for me to do one especially with all the things I’ve done to pursue my dreams in public and private.

I highly recommend doing this for yourself before the year ends as a way to reflect on all you’ve accomplished this year. If you’ve made it through some really tough moments tell yourself you are proud and why. If you experienced many wonderful things this year, celebrate them. Being grateful is a beautiful way for you to end and begin a new year. 

While I normally don’t share journal entries, I am going to share my letter to myself here in hopes that you write yourself a letter by the end of the year as well.

So here goes…

Dear Maryann,
This has been a tough year of internal work. While you share many things on social media, there was so much more that you battled with in private. I want you to know that I am proud of all you’ve accomplished this year.

You have carved out time to do more physical activity and created a solid workout routine. This has resulted in losing some inches off your waistline and gaining some lean muscles. I know you’ve weighed yourself a few times and while you don’t like the number on the scale, you know that the number doesn’t define you. The goal is to keep your body moving and just getting to the gym. Can we also talk about how insane it is that you have actual knowledge of how to use the cardio machines and free weights!?!? Like that is something you thought you would never be able to do AND now you are doing it at least twice a week. Mind blowing.

Even with this increase in self care, you still had some hard mental health days and that’s ok. I am so proud of how you allowed yourself to feel your feelings even if it was hard. Having dark days no longer defines you or enables the harsh words from your inner critic.

It has been a difficult year of parenting a threeanger and teenagers, your house has had a lot of emotions and learning how to parent in these stages is not easy. You have doubted your parenting many times through the year but you have parented the best way you know how. These chapters in your kids lives is not easy to move through but you reached out to others who have experienced similar instances and utilized their advice. Remember that your kids are significantly more behaved than you ever were as a child and teen, so know that you are doing the best you can even if it feels like everything is going down the drain. Your children are healthy, well loved and fed. 

You and your family made the hard decision to not travel home for the holidays which was a very difficult decision. It is hard to disappoint family but you knew that financially you couldn’t afford and putting yourself in a financial hole is not something you are comfortable doing anymore. While it is difficult to place a boundary around financial, you stood your ground and did was best for your family right now. While you will miss seeing lots and lots of family next week, rest in the fact that you stayed within your comfortable budget and pray that your family will be able to visit next year.

You had the biggest miscommunication and arguments with relatives this year. This was probably one of the hardest events of the year for you. It was hard for you to swallow your pride to admit you were wrong and apologize but you did something that you were never taught to do and I am proud of you for that. Its not easy to be that vulnerable, hold space for other people’s feelings, and then move forward with new boundaries and understandings. Healing from very emotionally heated arguments aren’t easy and I know you had a lot of anxiety about it but you pushed through and made efforts to rebuild relationships anyways. 

This year you have also leaned into your faith and increased your time in serving others in your home church community. What people don’t always see is the amount of prep that goes into serving others in small or large events. You have pushed through your social anxiety and made many meaningful relationships with women. Which is something you thought you could never do. Who would have thought the girl who had all guy friends in high school would now have a tribe of women who support you. That is such a God thing and I am so proud of how you’ve embraced, listened, and unconditionally supported these women. It is impressive to witness.

Can we celebrate launching your blog and actually having people read it. I mean that was a huge fear you had and everything is going better than you expected. While this chapter in yourself is just starting, know that you have done some amazing things this year with stepping outside of your comfort zone.  I’m so proud of how you have become an advocate for the mental health community this year and putting your true feelings on the interwebs. Sharing those unedited feelings isn’t easy and you did it in the best way you knew how and this has helped so many people in the process.

Becoming a person who shares their life on the interwebs is not easy. There have been many battles with your inner critic about your abilities and capabilities BUT you still pushed through the negativity in your head and moved closer to your dreams and goals. This brings up the biggest feat you’ve begun – going back to school to become a life coach. With all that you are currently doing, I didn’t believe you would be able to pull it off and you have with so much grace. There have been many late nights and times when you had to miss out on events because you made your schoolwork a priority but those sacrifices allowed you to move closer and closer to an amazing way you will serve your community local and around the world. I cannot wait to see how you help those around you with all that you learn from this certification.

With all that is going on, you are still able to make your marriage a priority. You and Chris has really invested more time in your relationship and being creative with how you spend time together. Gym dates and just hanging out is your new favorite way to spend time with your forever partner. Who knew you could become even closer to him even after 20 years together. Proud of you guys.

I encourage you to reread this letter next year to remind yourself of all you’ve accomplished. 2019 was a hard hill to climb and you’ve handled it with grace and grit. Keep believing in yourself or at least pushing yourself through your fears because you are doing amazing. 

Blessings and love,
Me

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