I've never formally chosen a word to guide me, but I do have a tendency to fixate on one word (or quote) to motivate me and keep me smiling.
That being said, I suppose my word last year was "joy." On December 16th, 2010, I declared to my Facebook friends that my new favourite word was "joy" and I carried it with me throughout 2011. This quote appeared on my calendar in January and I felt that it was a friendly reminder. And I had ordered this print from Elise's shop that says:
"'It's very simple,' she thought. 'You wake up, you go, you do, you see, you put one foot in front of the other and along the way, you do your very best to enjoy it.'"
And that's just what I did.
But for the past few months, I've had a harder time than usual being joyful. I still look for joy everywhere and know that it can be found in the simplest things. I've just needed something else to hold on to. That's where this word comes in...
Just as joy can be found everywhere, so can hope. It was delivered to me in October when Cara sent me this poem. I felt it every day that I got out of bed and hung out with my kindergarteners. And I found it when I read Sisterhood Everlasting:
"You'll find your way... because you have the thing that so often wavered in me. You have faith. Not in God necessarily, but in the thing with feathers. You are brightness... You are hope. No matter how far down you get, you'll always have it."
I constantly remind myself that there's no way of knowing what's going to happen tomorrow, next year, or ten years from now. Keeping that in mind, how can I not have hope?
So, I'm not choosing one word for 2012. I'm choosing two. Because with hope, I can feel joy.