Reflections 

Hey Everyone & Welcome (or welcome back!) to Courage Unchained!

I hope this post finds everyone well, in good health & hope that you all had a very Merry Christmas! It’s that time of year again, the holidays, Christmas & New Years. It doesn’t feel possible that we’re here already. I had hoped to be more active here this year but as it turned out, life had different plans. This is a time to focus on blessings, to enjoy the love that the holidays bring, to reflect on the past year & to hope for the coming year. 

Going to be honest, I came into this year with a lot of uncertainty. There was something in my gut that I just couldn’t put my finger on, I was excited for this year but my insides were almost in knots & there was no clue why. Looking back, it makes sense. Maybe I should have tried praying the feelings away but perhaps it was also a warning. As the year comes to a close, I’m striving to try & find the good but struggling some days.

2022 was not an easy year. This year started out with me, my husband and my family being pretty sick. It was a battle for me as I didn’t feel like myself again for close to three months. My real estate career was just getting started & I was so excited but it felt like the “getting started” was taking much longer than hoped due to being sick. By the time normal returned, my little brother graduated high school & we took off on a graduation vacation. That was a good week & honestly, was probably the only time this year when I was 100% relaxed. Not too many weeks later, we had a family member claim that he was trying to start his life fresh. This was something we really wanted to see happen so he moved in with us for over two months so he could try to get on his feet. Sadly, that time was filled with unnecessary drama & strife that he brought into our home. In the end, he gave up & ran back to what felt comfortable. Which was certainly better for our stress levels but sad at the same time. Because I think we all know that sometimes in life, what you need to do for your life isn’t in your comfort zone in the beginning. During all this, other family members were sick as well but thank the Lord, they healed even though it took a while for them to feel normal again as well. By the time that wrapped up, I had gotten a second job and it was within weeks of our wedding anniversary. Before leaving for vacation, another train of events was about to start unfolding. Our trip was fun, even had family join us on the last two days of our adventure. It was fun minus the night we had to leave our cabin at 2 in the morning and go to a nice hotel due to a roach infestation at our cabin. It’s a bit laughable now but still makes me cringe just thinking about it. We got back home & settled back into work, enjoying the Fall & knowing the holidays were quickly approaching. A very close family member found out in late October that she had breast cancer, the minor surgery went well & she bounced back quickly. Only for them to find out she also has ovarian cancer a short time later. The surgery was long but she took it like a champ, with God’s grace & protection. Though we know there’s still a journey ahead in dealing with this, I’ve never been more proud of how hard she’s fighting & how determined she is to be an overcomer. Through it all, I’ve had such peace from God, as He continues to tell me that everything is going to be alright. Now here we are, post-Christmas, almost a New Year & my head is spinning. 

My word for the year was: Thrive. But regretfully, it was more like survive. This year has sadly been so very early similar to “the year we don’t speak of” (aka 2020). At least for us anyways. I don’t understand why all of this has happened and is happening. I don’t think I ever will. My faith has been the only thing that has gotten me through the year without being a mess some days. But, I believe God sometimes gives us more than we can handle on our own, so we can depend more on Him. He is unchanging, the same day after day. His love never fails & He never leaves. He has overcome this world. Even though it might not happen tomorrow or 3 months from now or maybe even 6 months from now, I believe restoration is coming. I pray 2023 is a bountiful year of healing for everyone in many ways. Truthfully, 2020 broke me, 2021 strengthened me, 2022 changed me. Now, I hope this time next year I can say 2023 healed us all. 

Things I’ve learned this year. Life is precious, don’t let days go by without saying “I love you”. ~ There are some things in life, that no matter how much you want them to be normal or how bad you want certain relationships to work, they’re never going to be healthy & they’re always going to be toxic. Even if it hurts, cut off communication & walk away. ~ Life is too short for drama. ~ Anything that costs you your peace is too expensive. ~ Life is meant to be lived to the fullest, money comes & goes, but you can’t get time back. ~ Chase your God-sized dreams because tomorrow waits for no one. ~ Trust God with all of your heart and lean not into your own understanding. ~ This too shall pass. 

I’m looking forward to new beginnings but am also once again very wary of anticipating the coming year. This time though, I will admit that the dread isn’t there. The heaviness isn’t there. And so, it is replaced with hope. Over the last couple of weeks, I have been pondering my word for 2023. The two words that keep coming up in my heart are healing/restoration. Using this word is a little hard for me as I think everyone has been hoping & praying for restoration after 2020. But, this will be my word for the coming year, restoration. This is something I will strive to pray for & hope for in 2023. I will strive to restore hope, to restore daily happiness, to restore the areas of my heart that were hurt this past year, to restore dreams & goals, to restore the areas of my health that could certainly use improving & so much more. 

Thank you all for sticking with me on this blog post as I do believe it is one of the longest I’ve done. My wish & prayer for you this coming year is that you live, that you love, that you let go of what’s hurting your soul & the people who are hurting you, that you have good health & happiness and that this year is a year where you see dreams come true! 

I’m eager to release the year 2022 & look forward to better things. Lord only knows what 2023 will bring, but I pray it’s a year far, far better than this one was. I look forward to sharing the journey with you all.

Happy New Year Everyone!!

Until next time……

Katie

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