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  • Jaralyn Roberts

5 questions to consider in 2021

Updated: Jan 5


2020 has been a year of constantly living in the tension of grief and gratitude, of hope and hurt, of pain and peace. It has very well been a year that no one could have predicted. Black eyed peas couldn’t ensure it; the groundhog didn’t matter, nor did the farmer’s almanac- despite the rituals of good fortune, the idea of good weather or other psychological comforts, we didn’t see this coming. 2020 has accelerated growth and pushed resilience for all of us in ways that no other planned circumstances could have. 2020 has been relentless. It has been the hardest year of my life, especially considering the grief I carried coming into it and that combination has revealed so much to me about myself. It has allowed me to see truth, healing, and purpose in a whole new light… perfect vision.


2020 provided us with more time to think, to do things that maybe we never thought we had time for, to just be in ways we have never had the opportunity to be before. Even still with all the time and space, I often find myself struggling to really take care of myself…to create space for true self-care.


While there are areas in which I struggle, there are others in which I have thrived and experienced break through. In the beginning when stay at home orders were put in place, I found that I was doing and working more to prove that I was worthy. Worthy of my job, worthy of motherhood, worth of marriage, worthy of friendships… after a few weeks of this and reflection I realized this has been a pattern of behavior my whole life. I finally realized that my value doesn’t depend on my output. The work has been not only knowing this in my mind but believing it in my heart.


When I reflect on this past year, I think about all that I lost. The lost vacations, get-togethers, spending time with family and loved ones, the state fair, holidays, school, work settings, family, etc. Just so many things.


I carried the loss of my brother from months before 2020. I wonder how he would have handled this year and where he would have been. I can only imagine… I imagine this year would have been a little more fun and joyful with him around. Now I am adding the loss of my uncle (Jan 2020) and my grandma (Dec 31, 2020) on top of the loss of my brother to the context of who I am becoming.


I also think about all that I have gained this year… the family time, getting to know my daughter in new and fun ways, being with my husband all the time, perspective, deepening my faith and strengthening my walk with God. I have seen myself grow in ways unimaginable and I have let go of so much as well.


As we enter a new year, here are some questions I am asking myself:

· What/who do I need to let go of and leave in 2020?

· What did I learn and want to bring forth in 2021?

· Am I carrying any baggage with me? Are these things that I have the ability to put down?

· What limiting beliefs am I currently holding that is keeping me from experiencing the fullness of love, peace, and joy in my life?

· What am I looking forward to?


If I have learned nothing else in 2020 I have learned the importance of honoring the both/and – a healthy emotional life can’t exist when operating from either/or. While 2020 has not been what we planned or could hope, we do have control over how we respond. So as we enter this next year, I encourage you to not focus on a “new you” but instead imagine what it might look like to evolve from the “you” that has emerged through all of the challenges and joys of this year. You made it… you are here… Happy New Year!


Peace & Blessings,

Jaralyn Roberts

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