Suddenly I know what my word for 2014 will be.
The sudden realization of it made my eyes well up with tears just now. Because that is what I wish to spread more of in the world and it’s what I need to practice giving more of to myself as well.
This past year has not been an easy one – first there was Mom’s death, then Marcel’s heart attack, and then my broken foot – but it has been a year that has taught me that there are few things more worthy of spreading in the world than grace.
Grace is the woodpecker that arrived at the bird feeder moments after mom died reminding us that the world is still beautiful in the midst of pain.
Grace is the circle of friends who rallied around me to help pay for my trip to Lake Tahoe and Atlanta.
Grace is the food friends brought in our times of grief and illness.
Grace is that quiet moment in the woods when a deer stopped to look deeply into my eyes.
Grace is my daughters, giggling all night in a cheap hotel room, satisfied even though their friends hopped on planes to exotic destinations.
Grace is a picnic table and a bottle of wine at the edge of the lake while the sun set over the prairies.
Grace is accepting the quiet moment at Lake Louise with my post-surgery brother as enough, even though we both longed for more.
Grace is the many circles I have sat in and hosted – writing groups, leadership retreats, an artist retreat in a tiny border town, an international circle of women in Lake Tahoe, and a circle of grown-up campers at Lake Lanier.
Grace is late night swimming with a new circle of wild women friends.
Grace is hundreds of heart-opening conversations.
Grace is a quiet comment from a client that “your work changed me.”
Grace is getting up in the morning and forgiving the mistakes of yesterday.
Yes, 2014 will be a year of grace. Just like 2013 has been.