2016: the old year

"And it has been one hell of a year. I have worn the seasons under my sleeves, on my thighs, running down my cheeks. This is what surviving looks like, my dear." - Michelle K.

2016 has been a wild year. so heartbreaking for so many. maybe the dark spots stand out when you think back on it. maybe you had a major life change this year and maybe have been struggling to adjust. 

new years' is always an exciting time. it’s a benchmark, a time to reflect and start over. we all need second chances.

2016 has had some high highs and low lows for me. some very exciting opportunities, goals achieved, making changes for the better. but there are also things that hurt now that also hurt in 2015. and will maybe still hurt in 2017. 

and the thing is, that’s okay.  

i’m not saying that i’ll just stay complacent and wallow in the pain, but i am saying that i’m not going to beat myself up or feel shame for the sadness. all this would do is make the suffering worse and i could let it swallow me. 

so instead i’m going to say thank you. thank you for being patient with me while i adjust, for accepting me as i am, for encouraging me every day. 

so many of you lovely readers and people in my life keep me going every day. and you guys make me want to be better. 

i want these wounds to heal. i want to love myself. it’s a daily challenge, but i wouldn’t be where i am today without you. 

it’s important, when reflecting on the past, to have grace on yourself. to be aware of your downfalls and be determined to let them make you stronger. to accept the wrong things done to you, and to use them as fuel to love others better. 

if you’ve been reading any of my blog posts, the one thing i hope i have expressed strongly enough is this: everyone suffers. everyone has insecurities and aches and sadness. some people more than others, yes, but i think that suffering is a gift. 

pain is like fire in a kiln that creates beautiful, useful art. suffering can give your life a purpose, but that purpose is up to you. 

my goal has always been to learn from the hurt. when someone breaks my heart, i work hard to never do that to someone else. to love with a fierceness that each human deserves. 

so if you’re feeling defeated at the end of a long, heavy year, take heart. this year could be the fuel that drives you into your purpose. this suffering could shape you into the person the world needs.

2017 will be a year of love. it has to be. we’ve all felt the weight of terrorism, hate, loss, and what we all need is a soft, gentle spirit to soothe the wounds. 

be that person, and those people will be drawn to you. change is possible. you’re not broken. we’re in this together.

love & courage,

Ashley


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12 comments:

  1. I changed jobs this year & it's been tough. Thinking I made the right choice for my piece of mind, only to discover that I'd find myself in a similar situation. At 39 yo I find myself still struggling to speak up for myself, always wanting to please others and not rock the boat. When I do rock the boat I tip the dang boat upside down! So my wish for 2017 is balance, courage & confidence for my life.

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that, I've been there and I know it sucks, I hope you find your voice and a better year next year, also if you ever want to talk or someone to listen to you, feel free to hit me up, I'm @bluecocoi on twitter.
      hope you have a lovely day.

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  2. 2016 has been a very particular year for me, i've let a lot of things go out through my skin, through my eyes, through my mouth and for the first time, through my hands, this year I allowed myself to feel more than ever and even if it was pain or hollow, feel it felt right ; as you wisely said, this year I started shaping who I am, who I want to be, this year I became aware of the fight I'm fighting and that made me a little stronger.
    I like to think 2016 was the seed and I'm sure we're gonna see fruits.

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  3. Life is a constant learning process, and more often than not, it's very difficult. There is so much to do, so much to say, and so much to think about that sometimes life itself feels overwhelming.

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  4. we're in this together. love that. can't thank you enough, Ashley. <3

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  5. I've heard that suffering is a gift, that we could not grow without it and I wonder if I will ever get that. I do feel like the tough times are like waves crashing on our shores, reshaping us. And they never stop.

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  6. This was a really lovely post, and we all have a purpose- there is a reason for everything that happens. Also I love Daughter's music, it's very calming.

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  7. 2016 has been an exhausting year for me. I began a huge project, and true to myself, when I feel overwhelmed or incapable, I've wanted to quit. However, I have stuck it out. Still a long way to go. Will see the completion in 2017.
    I was praying yesterday asking God to give me the motivation to live my life, to stop giving up on myself, and for yet another chance at something with a purpose.
    I have felt for the last several months as if I'm just merely existing in a hole with no way out. Feeling trapped is extremely frustrating and depressing, but I desperately want to change that.
    All I can do is trust.
    Thank you for your words. <3

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  8. oh, it's very important post for me. sorry, i can't make noise so precise as you, but i 'll try. that year was ... strange, i've found many people and get their support and i hope, i also was an aware and alive person. I belive new year will be better. Hope I’m ready, able to make my own, good year) thank you for your words and feelings.

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  9. Hello what a beautiful thing, the words that made me think, this year in my church is the year of love, that connection, that's exactly what I need to find my purpose this year, heal my wounds and this can only be possible by loving one another others.
    It's a year of great love for us, I'm from Brazil and I loved your blog, continue๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿ’•
    My name:Fernanda (It's an account of my father.)๐Ÿ˜‚

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  10. Nice post. Speaking about technologies. I found ideals VDR very convenient for my business. It keeps my data stored safely online.

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  11. I like reading such thngs very much and that is really great to read your lines.

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