Saturday, December 30, 2017

word of the year... Change

little snips of fabric create a picture with a message
It is a very important decision each year, the choice of a "word of the year"

It becomes a focus, a working framework, a way of learning and viewing the world. It will crop up over and over all year. Lessons will be presented, growth occurs. I've done this for many years and am always surprised at what surfaces for me.

Seldom what I expected when choosing the word.
So for this year... my word is change

I considered "learn" but learning is just a small aspect of the greater concept of change.

After writing to my friend Eliza, I understood myself better, which is often the case. Somehow in the writing, or  talking to, a friend,  I find out what I think, how I feel...what's important.

I used to think I liked change. I realized I like variety,  not change. 

I wrote to her:
"I like to know what's coming and follow a routine of my choosing.
Random change is unsettling, causing constant learning and decision making to cope. I do not like it. My friend June wrote that the Chinese symbol for change is the same as opportunity. I need to focus more on the opportunity aspect of it.
After all the changes that started when Cole passed, I seem unable to even pick out lunch.
 I hope to explore better coping skills for change... so that must become my word.

 Learning will ride along side like an assistant

Decisions are not always marked with lights and an arrow around them saying, "PICK ME!" We make decisions, big and small and live with the consequences. Maybe we learn for the future but usually we just accept the changes that come with them.  

 Drew and I still torment ourselves over the decision to move here. One day, on our lovely porch in Maryland, Drew said he felt he was holding his breath, waiting to start life.

That day we started our journey to figure out how to live life not just hold on. Thrive not survive.

We both feel regret about the move but now must live with it. We knew something had to change but what? We took action.

I moved for health but now I am panting all the time, and swollen, and in pain. I have large black bags under both eyes. I feel worse. I don't fit in. We are spending so much on the move and this large pretty house has a broken dishwasher they won't fix, a broken cabinet door, expanses of flooring I can't clean, a rocking toilet in the master bath and is so close to neighbors Milo can't relax. Daily I find broken and lost items I cared about in these anonymous brown boxes. More traffic, and more ice to cope with.

It's not home.

I woke saying we have to stop going over the decision, to admit it may have been a mistake or not, we took action to try to better our lives, and need to commit. I need to find peace with the changes.
"Let yourself Soar" made for Hoffman Challenge (I used their fabric for her hair) 
(the quilt was made for the Hoffman challenge one year, and is lovely full of metallic threads, sheers, painting, piece work and applique, with a personal message. It was rejected even though I won a prize for the quilt the year before)

No doubt the universe will hit me hard with lessons this year. I remember the year I chose release and ended up releasing more than I suspected I would.

My fear of change must be overcome by a desire for growth

This song keeps running through my mind...
the words...
"Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changin' ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?
Oh, I don't know
Well, I've been afraid of changin'

But time makes you bolder...children get older
And I'm getting older, too, so...

I like this new young thing's words
follow your arrow wherever it points

This one was written for graduates, but I hope to be a graduate of life and it applies to me too
lyrics: you got this! you are one in a million so move ahead with confidence you got this!

Thank you for walking this journey of life alongside me. 
Love to all this new year with it's fresh starts,
We got this

linking to: 

  Free motion by the River Tuesdays   
Our World Tuesday to do Tuesday 

design wall Mondays at smallquiltsanddollquilts
Main Crush Monday
the mop link party mondays
sew can do mondays

 scrap happy Saturdays
sewcanshe Saturdays 


  1. What a great word, and a great post. It is interesting how our attitudes effect our feeling about things. I hope it gets easier and better for you, coping with this move. Hug to you and yours!

  2. Oh, LeeAnna, my heart goes out to you! Believe in yourself and Drew and your choices. Change can be good. Focus on the light!

    :) Linda

  3. I was really struck by the idea that opportunity and change are synonymous. HMMM! Food for thought. I hope things smooth out and that you begin to feel healthier. Coping with change is hard for us humans! Hugs!

  4. I think just recognising that you are there now, so look for opportunities, is a good thing.
    I expect you are having a bit of culture shock, too. We lived 4mo in Minn. - a temporary placement for my husband. and it was a real culture shock to me - even though I grew up in Maine and had only moved to the UK a few years before. 4 mo wasn't enough to get over it. we were testing the waters about what might come about to live in America, because we had just been through a difficult patch here... but for us the things that happened during that time were things that showed us staying in the UK was where we needed to be. So sort of backward of what you are doing. But perhaps you could read up on culture shock and see what sorts of tips they give for dealing with it?
    Big Hugs and I know you will have a good New Year if you are looking for the opportunities and positives.

  5. Big hugs you you! Change is always difficult and moving half way across the country is rough. I like your outlook - to find the positive. I hope you are feeling better soon and that 2018 brings you peace and joy.

  6. Change is not easy--at my age even a new phone annoys me...when I should be grateful for it!! Moving away across the country is such a major change, too--definitely culture shock..
    I am so sorry you are not feeling "at home" in your new place...and that you are not feeling well...I hope in this New Year you will find comfort and "a place" in your new surroundings...such a culture shock for sure...hang in there and just put one foot in front of the other one day at a time.
    Blessings on you all for the New Year--hugsx3 Julierose

  7. Oh, LeeAnna, my heart goes out to you!
    Change is not easy especially for vintage children like us! i think you might be exhausted with all the changes and this time of year is also a drain on us. Yes you can!
    I love the stevie nicks song and have sung along with her once again. May golden words and music and opportunity refresh you in the new year. Breathe Deeply! aloha, sonja

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  9. I've ached for you ever since you lost Cole. But you got through that and found peace. It was a giant step. This is another one, but you three have each other. You also have so many friends, so keep writing and talking and we will all support you.

  10. I'm sorry this change has all been stressful. I hope things settle soon!

  11. Hi LeeAnna and Drew,
    Change! A perfect word for 2018!
    Keep blogging, talking, writing, sharing,
    Wishing you that this mountain of challenges will soon be reduced to a mole hill!

  12. My pop pop used to say the only constant in life was change. I understand how anxious you are these days. I'm just glad you are keeping open about what is going on inside of you because that allows you to learn to cope. My heart goes out to you. Wishing you peace and happiness in the coming year!

  13. Change is extremely hard for me, so it was good to start thinking of it as opportunity! Hope the adjustment gets easier for you day by day. We are all pulling for you!

  14. Oh, LeeAnna! I breaks my heart to know that you are feeling unsettled. For 2018, I wish you peace along with ways to cope with the change. Turn to your art and remember that we are your people. We're here for ya, Babe!!

  15. I like that with change is opportunity to learn. I can so relate how you feel like you are holding your breath, waiting for the next shoe to drop, feeling like you are existing in the universe, at times you feel like you are thrown through the waves, slammed up against the rocks then smashed down deep within those tumultuous waters, other times you feel like you are becalmed, floating, not moving. Sometimes we do not choose change, we are thrust within the whirlwind and have to adapt, learn and eventually embrace it, whether good or bad.

    You will adapt, you will learn, and you will thrive.

  16. I can hear the struggle, and I am hoping that writing this post helped you. I often find that just vocalizing my concerns is the first step to overcoming them. I don't know you well, but I would like to offer two quotes in case they might be meaningful for you: "You have been assigned this mountain to show others it can be moved." "The darkest nights produce the brightest stars." Praying for your peace and happiness through the change/opportunity.

  17. Your post and word of the year remind me of two quotes. The first is by Deepak Chopra: “All great changes are preceded by chaos.” The second is by author Dan Millman: "The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new." You and Drew are in the thick of making a big change which is messy and painful and necessary. You're strong and brave and will survive and enjoy better times ahead. Hang in there!

  18. Mary already said what I was thinking ... believe in yourselves and just take one day or even one hour at a time. Hug each other often and don't forget to breathe!

  19. The experts say (don't you hate "the experts" sometimes) that after a major life change (yes moving across the country is a major life change), you need to take a year to adjust before doing anything else. Believe in yourselves because you are both strong and brave. The breathing issues are undoubtedly related to altitude, so you need an "altitude" adjustment more than an attitude adjustment. And lookat the wonderful group of virtual friends who are cheering you on. You're right, you've got this.

  20. I agree with MissPat. My husband and I moved into our house a little over a year ago. There were many times of frustration, anger and regret for the house we left behind. But it was a move we needed to make. I missed my routines the most. I had to find a new normal and that was not easy. It has been a rough year, but I think we are finally getting adjusted. I know that you and Drew will also 'adjust' it will just take time.

  21. Oh LeeAnna-I feel your pain (and so appreciate your ability to write such beautiful prose). You've already made the first step for adjusting to this major life change-facing it all head on. "get out of my way obstacles- we have a life to live!". One Day At A Time. mary

  22. Change is a wonderful and powerful word, I am sure it will bring you challenges that you will embrace and use as a positive growth opportunity! I hope you will get better physically and you will feel more at home in your new place! A big hug!!

  23. With friends...we do got this! (horrible English!)
    I like change. I also like same. But change is more exciting and I can learn more.
    I'm here with you in this new year to see what comes and goes. I cannot wait to hear the new adventures of LeeAnna, Drew and Milo.

  24. To my fellow new's to a year of beautiful and wondrous change full of sparkle. Let's get together soon. 💖

  25. Lovely creations despite the changes you don't like ~ sending lots of healing hugs to you and your family ~ be gentle with your self as you begin to soar ~

    Wishing you a Happy New Year,
    A ShutterBug Explores
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

  26. Great post. Some of my favorite lyrics

  27. Change is indeed growth. Happy New Year.

  28. Best wishes with your word this year. Change certainly isn't easy. I have yet to decide on my word for this year. I am leaning towards sufficient. I don't pick a word to focus on every year but when I do I find it very helpful.

  29. "Change" is a courageous choice! Blessings to you as you live it each day of 2018!

  30. LeeAnna,
    Your pain is evident. Your hurting heart is clear. More importantly, your willingness to grow and change will get your through. Sometimes life is just hard - really hard. Sometimes it's due to life being life, other's decisions that affect us or our own decisions. hurts.

    I have found that as I respect my feelings, feel my feelings, and try to look for "signs of life", I can move forward. Sometimes, sometimes, my dear one, it takes time. More time than either of us wants to give.....

    I hear you.
    You are not alone.

  31. I really like your choice for your Word. There is a saying that I have heard before " The only thing constant in life is Change" We are constantly changing whether we realize it or not. I am sorry to hear that you are having a hard time with your move. A long time ago, I realized that I would never have my "Dream House" so I made my house into the "House of my Dreams". Maybe you can work towards that....
    My One Little Word for 2018 is PEACE! If interested, you can read about it here:
    Wishing you luck this coming year with your Word!!

  32. Change has always been difficult for me. My husband often tells me, and the kids, that going in one direction and realizing it may not be leading you in exactly the direction you want to go is a good thing. It means your not standing still, stagnant in one place and it also means that you are reevaluating yourself. For me and the kids, we always look at it as we did something wrong, or failed in some way. To him it means success in that there is opportunity for course correction. I often rely on his perspective as it helps me to stop being so hard on myself when I am not handling changes well. I wish you blessings in this new year. My word for this year ended up being a two-parter... No and Breathe.

  33. Beautiful word and post LeeAnna, that is one of my favorite songs by Stevie Nicks and I also really enjoyed the other 2 videos you chose. Best of luck to you and your husband, change is always hard for me also. Hugs!

  34. LeeAnna, you have chosen a good word for the year. You will find the inner strength to cope with change, though it may be hard at times. As you said, view change as an opportunity, seeing the more positive side of things. And unfortunately, the older we get the more set we are in processing things. Take your time, and give yourself the best at the moment. You're in my thoughts - take care.

  35. Changes are good sometimes. Don't be afraid to change you may lose something good but you may gain something better. Its good your fear of change overcome by a desire for growth.
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