Donna-Ryan-headshot

Living with Joy

The New Year had arrived, and the day after the ball dropped in Times Square, we were packing the car and heading home. I made a resolution not to cry as I hugged my son, but I broke it.

This is now the reason I no longer make resolutions!

As our drive continued, the day became bright enough for me to open the new journal I got for Christmas. It included a section with questions geared to guide us to think of goals, hopes and dreams for the year.

Below the question were lines to be filled out for the answer with the words dream, hope and goal. Well, the answer to dream was a cinch, because I was sitting in our cramped car.  I dream of taking vacation trips in a huge Winnebago rather than travel in a Mazda sitting yoga-style for two days.

In answer to the word goal, I said I wanted to be enthusiastic and find something joyful on every day of my journey. I’m thinking of a long one – like 40 years from now.

Questions like these are dreams. Nothing in life is promised, no matter how much we want it to be.    Yes, they can come true with hard work and dedication, and we need to have goals and take steps toward them. We must always stay filled with hope, but we cannot crumble when the journey is met with obstacles or detours.

Joy is a powerful tool, especially when dealing with these obstacles or detours – or sad events like saying goodbye to my son. I remember the fun times we have had, and that makes me happy. My mantra for the year:  There are no good-byes that cannot be improved by joy. Even in the darkest times I will always try to remember the good things.

While I hope you do not experience many sad good-byes, if you do find yourself faced with some. I pray they will be brief. I hope you will take my advice. Remember the joy.

Each day is a new beginning.