ELYSE-13 Guys, it's almost Christmas. What. The Heck. Just FYI, if you need me over the next 25 days, I’ll be somewhere watching Elf.

But seriously, we have one month left of 2015.

You started the year with a countdown full of hope, dreams and champagne. And with one month to go, I’ve been thinking about you. I’ve been thinking about how this year has been, for you.

Maybe 2015 has been the best year of your life. If so, more power to you boy/girlfriend (go ahead, choose your own adventure). Perhaps you found your person, held their hand and felt all the feels. Or you finally decided that nobody lets your dream sit in the corner, and you did something about it. Or you went on the type of trip that Instagram was created for, and everyone double tapped the heck out of your photos. Or you ran that Disney marathon with your best friends.

Maybe you were the Beyoncé of this year. And if so, may I pet your weave while you tell me how you did it? Just kidding (I think).

Now that you had such a year, with one month to go, please… Reflect. And keep reflecting. Find the person who encouraged the pants off you this year (not literally, unless you’re married, then hey-yo!). Write them a card. Send them a text. Buy them a coffee. Say thank you. Don’t let your thanksgiving stop with the turkey and sweet potato. Please, always say thank you.

Maybe for you, this year felt less like Beyoncé and more like Britney’s meltdown. Maybe you seriously considered turning in your adult badge, burning all your grown-up clothes, and shaving your head.

Sometimes, despite our prettiest mood boards and proudest mantras, life just pulls out some plot twists.

Maybe this year, life got you real good, with jabs and swings and kicks so intense, it landed you the ground. Maybe you’re on the ground right now, reading this, trying to catch your breath, with one hand on the white flag.

If your heart is aching right now, I get you. I’ve had moments like that myself this year. Where the stress of life becomes claustrophobic and loneliness feels like it will be your legacy. Where sleep seems so enticing until you get in bed, and your thoughts kidnap you until 4am. Where your hope feels like a memory and good days a distant dream.

But please, listen to me. Do not wave that white flag, not yet. Keep fighting. Stay.

Listen to the lesson that whispers stay when everything else screams run.

That’s the lesson I’ve had to learn this year. On the outside I was Olivia Pope’ing the heck out of life. But on the inside? I was falling apart.

I was keeping up appearances during the day. But the appearances were keeping me up at night.

And this time it wasn’t about running from the bright lights and the big city. This time it wasn’t about escaping the big, bad world. This time it was about staying.

Sometimes that decision to stay is the secret weapon to success. I think it’s in the whisper of stay, that home is found.

And yet in order to stay, I had to be known. Not followed and not friend-ed, known.

I had to wave my hand. I had to let people in. I had to admit that I couldn’t fix everything, that I couldn’t be the hero of my own story. I had to let Him heal my heart. I had to decide not to shut people out when they ask the second and third question.

I had to be ok when my tears were the response I couldn’t verbalise.

So yes, I know how tempting it can be to run. But darling, don’t wave that flag. Not yet. You still have fight in you. I know you do. If I got back up this year, in some of my darkest moments, so can you. You have one month left to stand up when others are lying down. You have one month left to smile in the midst of a storm. You have one month left to let people in. You have one month let to praise Him even when it doesn’t make sense just yet.

I don’t know what your year has been like, but I know you have one month left. I know we have one month left. And I guess I just wanted to remind you that it’s not over until that countdown get to 1, until the fireworks begin to crack, until the text messages roll in.

It's aint over till it's over. We have one month left of 2015.

Let's do this. Let’s make it the most wonderful time of the year.

Jude 1:2 "Relax, everything's going to be all right; rest, everything's coming together; open your hearts, love is on the way!"

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