Out with the old, in with the new

When I started this blog, I wanted to let go of things that were weighing me down. I’d just gotten an official diagnosis of MS, and I  was facing the uncertainty of my future with that unpredictable disease. I decided to try to cut down on stress by getting rid of clutter, working to get healthier, and trying not to worry so much. The idea was that the blog would keep me accountable to myself.

Over time, things evolved. I got rid of load after load of household clutter, though I still have far to go. I lost 20 pounds, started doing yoga, and gave up meat and dairy. I took a six-month leave of absence from work to travel around Europe with David and Quinland.

All this has given me a new perspective on life, and I have found myself re-thinking what “Lighten Up” – the blog and the phrase – means to me now.

My original definition of “Lighten Up” was based on weight. I wanted things to be less heavy. I wanted my material possessions to be reduced, my weight to go down, my mood to go up, my schedule to be less hectic. All of those things have happened, to some degree.

Now, I’m going to start looking at another facet of the word “lighten” – making things brighter. I’d like to shed light on the corners of my life, to see how I can continue to simplify it. I’d like to light a path to the future for my son, by sharing the things I believe about life and how to live it. I’d like to spread light in the world by seeking ways to serve others, instead of focusing so much on myself. I am sure that as the days go by, I’ll think of more examples!  I hope that each post in this blog will document some instance of “enlightening” myself or my world.

So that’s my new mission. Thanks for coming along for the ride; your comments are welcomed and appreciated more than you know!

Lighten Up!

light·en
v.tr.
1.  To make less heavy.
2.  To lessen the oppressiveness, trouble, or severity of.
3.  To relieve of cares or worries; gladden.
v.intr.
1.  To become less in weight.
2.  To become less oppressive, troublesome, or severe.
3.  To become cheerful.

lighten up (Informal)
To take matters less seriously: Everything will work out fine, so stop worrying and lighten up.