It’s safe to say that I have pretty high expectations for 2016.
When someone thinks about the definition of explore, its pretty typical for their mind to go straight to travel. Although they’re not wrong, the actual definition of explore is “to inquire into, discuss, examine or evaluate (an option or possibility).”
A lot happened at the end of 2015 that made me want to start over. In the effort of transparency, and because I’m not sure how many times I can repeat the same story, my grandmother isn’t doing well. Really neither of my grandmothers are doing well but my dad’s mom is definitely doing worse. So to make a long story short: I quit my job (thank god for freelance work), got rid of my apartment (not paying rent anymore is fine with me) and moved back home (oh god) to help my family as much as possible. I’m fortunate enough that my grandmother is doing better, and seeming to make a recovery, but I’d just rather spend as much time with her as possible right now.
The end of 2015 gave me a lot of perspective and really made me think about what’s most important in life. The one thing that kept coming back to me was my happiness. But what I needed to figure out was what was going to get me there? By the end of the year, I was so consumed within my own thoughts, that it was too easy to get lost…I wanted to be found.
With all of that being said, I wanted to pick a resolution that I could stick to and that would find me that happiness. I didn’t want something practical, like working out or eating right. I already do that enough. I wanted a challenge.
I chose to explore because I could somehow interpret it into every aspect of my life. I wanted to expand my life, in every aspect of the word. While I definitely want to explore from a geographical standpoint, and I’ve spent the last 18 days of 2016 doing so, I figured I could also explore myself and test my limits.
Caring for my grandmother (who is not an easy woman to deal with…the Italian/Ukrainian combination is lethal), and spending time with her, has given me such an unexpected amount of happiness. I tested myself when I decided to help her. I explored what it’s like to care for someone above yourself. When I called to tell her that I was coming home, she cried, told me how happy she was and how much she missed me (try not to forget I worked two hours away from her on a good day). And then I cried because I was so happy that she was happy. Everything happens for a reason and I explored when I took a leap of faith. I’m not a risk taker…but some people are just worth the risk.
I want to learn. I want to be the best possible version of myself. I want to figure out what really makes me tick. I want to fine-tune it. I want to find a direction with it.
I want to explore.
Here’s to 2016.