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A 2023 Roundup


I have been thinking about 2023 coming to an end.  What a year it has been!  Not every minute has been easy – but, holy smokes.  I feel like I’ve done a lot.  I want to take some time to recount – not to brag or anything like it – but, to take stock.  I often tell my clients to do this – so, once again, I’m trying to follow my own advice.


This was a year of transitions.  I quit my full-time job (which had become part-time in 2022).  I cut the cord though.  I traveled.  This year I went to Spain, Malta, Portugal, Honduras, Colombia and Ecuador.  In the US, I went to Colorado, DC, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia.  For the holidays, I’m hitting the southern eastern coast – Georgia, Florida and North Carolina  I spent five months in Roatan, Honduras.  And – I became a scuba instructor.  I also was certified by the Handicapped Scuba Association to teach scuba to those with disabilities.  I certified fifteen people.  I completed over 350 dives.  I dove in Malta, Roatan, Galapagos and in a murky, cold quarry in Virginia.  I connected with a dive shop in DC and started teaching with them.  I more than doubled my therapy business and I planned and scheduled my first retreat. I have completed training and started offering couples counseling.  I also started this blog and my professional website. And, I had an incredible year!  I met amazing people.  I got to spend quality time traveling with my boyfriend.  I spent time with family and friends and saw DC in a new light.  Phew.  Seems like a lot. 


It has not all been easy.  I dealt with a lot of significant self-doubt.  I felt depressed.  I dealt with loss.  I dealt with drama (most of which I had very little interest in).  I isolated.  I practiced gratitude.  I got healthier, physically and mentally.  It has not been a perfect year.  Parts of it were definitely hard.  But, it has also been pretty incredible.

 

I have learned an awful lot this year. I’ve learned about myself. I’ve learned about others. I’ve started to understand more about the environment, ocean, fish, and behavior (fish and human). I’ve been excited by human capacity for learning and growth. I’ve been disappointed by the ways that people can be small, closed-minded and petty. I remembered the importance of being active and getting time outside.I’ve been rudely reminded of just how short and fragile life can be. I’ve learned


to slow down and breathe.  In some ways I’ve learned to be with myself.  I’ve also learned the importance of not staying by myself too long.  I.e., as much as I am introvert, I absolutely do need human interaction.  I’ve learned the joy of living and eating simply.  I’ve also learned the joy of not having to eat the same tired meal and going out to dinner.  I’ve seen people who seemingly have very little be beyond generous.  I’ve been reminded that people are wonderful and terrible and everything in between.  I’ve been reminded that cats are fantastic company, but can be complete assholes at 3 a.m. if you let them.  I’ve spent time with tiny and massive creatures and observed the grace in all of them.  I’ve been reminded of the delicateness of this earth, and started to grasp the magnitude of how much it hangs in the balance, waiting for humans to change their behavior.  Above all, perhaps most importantly, I’ve been reminded that there is balance in the world and absolute beauty all around us if only we choose to look. 



I wish you a warm and happy holiday season and a joyful 2024!  I have other blogs that I’ve been sitting on – which I expect I’ll be publishing before too long – but, I just wanted to finish the year with this post. Sometimes, it’s important to kick back and reflect on the time that has passed, the accomplishments, the challenges and a bit of gratitude for all that has transpired. 


The final picture was not taken by me, but by M. Eberle, who happened to be on my liveaboard in Galapagos. I'm hopeful that he does not mind me publishing his gorgeous photo.

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