I don’t usually make formal new year’s resolutions, but I do like to spend time at the end of the year reflecting on the outgoing year and thinking about what I want for the next year. I recently discovered REBERB10 — a website featuring daily prompts for reflection throughout the month of December. Here are a few of my answers — reflections on 2010 and looking forward to 2011.
December 8: Beautifully Different
I use big words and quote Polish dissident writers in everyday conversations without even thinking about it. (My friends tell me this is one of my unique traits.) I have a great smile.
December 17: Lesson Learned and December 24: Everything’s OK
In early October, I had a horrible weekend in my Vilnius apartment. I wanted to move out as soon as possible but I didn’t know where I could go. That Sunday morning, a new acquaintance at the International Church asked me how I was doing and I blurted out that I needed to move out of my apartment. She immediately invited me to come stay with her for two weeks while her husband was out of town. I am so glad that I accepted her offer — not only did I have a home for two weeks when I needed one, it was also the beginning of a good friendship. In that moment of asking for and accepting help, I realized that everything was going to be okay — and I learned the valuable lesson that sometimes I need to let go of my need to do everything myself and allow someone to help me.
December 22: Travel
Given that I am living in Lithuania, this may seem an obvious one, but this year featured three significant trips. 1) Krakow, Poland — this was on my list of must-see places and I loved the city. 2) Italy — Venice was amazing and the food was delicious. 3) Oxford/London – my first trip back to the UK since I lived there 20 years ago reminded me of how much I like the British.
In 2011, I am looking forward to a trip to Stockholm to attend the Baltic Studies Conference in Europe and visit a former professor. And who knows what other weekend trips might pop up along during the year!?
December 25: Photo
This photo of me with my niece and nephew at the beach was taken by my sister when I visited them last June. It represents two things that are important to me, but aren’t as much a part of my life as I would like. Although I am fascinated by the history of cold countries (here I am in snowy Lithuania, after all), I love the beach and warm climates. Even more, I love my niece and nephew. In 2011, I’m hoping for some beach time and looking forward to staying connected with my niece and nephew, despite being so far away.