Happy New Year! I am so excited to begin 2018 talking with you about love, life and happiness. This year we are going to dig even deeper. We are going to keep talking about how to find, cultivate and maintain healthy happy romantic relationships. But we are also going to talk more about what it takes to be happy with or without a significant other. I used to really hate when people said things like, “You won’t find love until you love yourself”, or “You should be able to be happy without romantic love.” I wrote these statements off as comments from the “haves” who couldn’t understand the lonely plight of the “have-nots”. But now I know there was and is some truth to those statements.
You see, life happens in seasons. As I write to you now on NYE I’m juggling a 14lb baby on my arm. My left arm is pecking away single handed-ly at the keys while my right shoulder gets more and more soaked with drool and spit-up. This is my season of drool, projectile poops, and sleepless nights. But it’s also my American Idol, Next Top Model, Obama phase. In short, my kid thinks I’m the most important person in every room. When I make my grand entrance equip with baggy stained t-shirt and last nights head scarf he gleams at me like I’m Angelina Jolie in an African orphanage. (Don’t be offended, my kids ½ African so I can say these things!) Anyway, he makes me feel important, like Obama important. And that makes me happy.
My Facebook status memories take me back to prior seasons. I think about kissing “almost bae” on New Year’s Eve. I think about dancing with my BFF back when Angels & Kings was still open on Chicago’s north side. I remember the excitement of nights deemed epic, the expectations of NYE, the way nothing ever happened as planned, yet somehow I still had so much fun. I wonder if I was as happy then as I am now reminiscing about those times.
That’s the tricky part about life happening in seasons. It’s really tough to enjoy the season you are in. In the fall we anticipate winter for the holiday season. Then winter comes and it’s so cold we can’t wait until summer. All the while Mariah’s Carey’s singing the best Christmas song ever, “All I Want for Christmas” and we are thinking about “almost bae” wishing he were “actual bae” or “husband bae”. It’s just tough to live in the moment and not postpone happiness. For me it was always, I’ll be happy when… I’ll be happy when I have a boyfriend. I’ll be happy when my boyfriend proposes. I’ll be happy when we have a kid. I’ll be happy when I lose my baby weight. I’m guilty. I’m going to tell you not to do this, and to just be happy right now, but I’m going to also admit that I’m guilty. I still do it sometimes, because it is tough to live in the moment. But it has also gotten a lot easier for me and I am a lot happier. So this year we are going to talk about that transition, and how you and I both can keep increasing our “right now happiness” regardless of what or who, we have or don’t have today.
Additionally, I really love when you, my readers, email me with post suggestions or questions. Some of my best post this year have come from readers asking me relationship questions. So, what do you want to know? Likewise, what do you want to share? What unique perspective do you have that you want to share with fellow readers in the Perspectives series?
2018 is going to be a great year, I’m proclaiming it now. It’s going to be a year of personal growth, cultivating love (especially self-love), and a year of happiness! As we enter 2018, I want to share with you:
10 quotes from 10 blog posts of 2017
10. We are the only ones that solely experience our lives and we are the only ones solely capable of making our lives happy. Be proud of the choices you make that bring you happiness and enjoy them without comparison, without explanation or apology. – How to Protect your Happiness this Holiday Season
9. Marriage is a 3-legged race with blindfolds. You have to learn to walk together in the same direction with immense communication. -Why Do People Say Marriage is So Hard?
8. In dating we must listen, to what is said and what isn’t said. And we must make sure we aren’t simply hearing what we hope to be hearing. -The Taboo Question: Is Purposeful Dating Still Okay
7. Healthy relationships give you more life, they rejuvenate you and add happiness not pain to your world. Healthy relationships feel like the first outdoor recess after a long winter. – If Not Love Then What: 6 Reasons Why I Married Him Other Than Love
6. God is not cupid. Cupid is not real! -3 Godly Reasons You’re Settling in Love
5. Nothing feels worse than the pain we inflict on ourselves, the forgiveness we don’t grant ourselves, the self-love we deny ourselves, and the beauty we fail to see in ourselves. – Disposable Love: The First Cut is the Deepest
4. The best way to find a happy, healthy relationship is to invest in yourself. To get a great partner, you’ve got to be great! All the years you spend investing in yourself will prepare you to receive great things. – Are you Fixing the Right Person? How Investing Too Much in Significant Others Can be Detrimental to Your Own Growth
3. Don’t be bitter if you feel love, declare love or have love declared to you without it resulting in the ultimate outcome you hope for. Move forward, and learn to say or listen for the stated or implicit “and” or “but” that follows the “I love you”. – When Should you Tell Someone you Love Them?
2. Believe that, despite your human imperfectness, or past mistakes, you have inner and outer beauty to share. It’s okay to know what you want and go after it. It is your divine right to love and be loved. – Is Fear your Biggest Barrier to Finding Love
1. “Choose wisely, date smart and have standards. It’s better to get married later to the right person, someone who is a true life partner, than to rush it and marry the wrong person.” – Dating Tips for Single Women from a New Mom
Happy New Year everyone!
With lots of love, – Nora Nur