Intrepid Tales on Insulin

Type 1 life adventures

The Year of Indulgence

My friend Chel and I have a tradition, almost a decade long now, which is our alternative to the standard new-year resolution.  Rather than being fixated on rigid objectives, we opt for a single word to encapsulate what we hope the year will bring, and as the descriptor by which we intend to shape our lives or acknowledge where we are at and want to be.

It started as a one-word-for-all collective activity that generated much musing amongst our gang from about November.  As friends and lovers drifted in and out of the word circle, Chel and I continued with the tradition, but it has since morphed so that we now project our own word for our own story.

We are obliged to justify our words to each other with a paragraph or so on the aspects to which this banner will apply. We start reflecting in November about the year that has been, often realising only then how much the word really does summarise the year’s journey.  Then we start to think about what comes next.  There will generally be a trajectory of where we’ve come from, to where we intend to go (which sometimes does not get locked in until late January or even February).

We’ve had the Years of Transition, Exploration, Consolidation and Fruition, amongst others.  2013 is my Year of Indulgence.  Chel is Leaping.

For me indulgence points to the pampering I suppose I’d craved after the focus in previous years on getting diagnosed, the boring business of learning to manage and the general mission to become well. I knew from late December last year that I would be accepting a redundancy from my university and that this would give me room to indulge with time off to think about my next stage in life, to take overdue holidays and pursue my own creative and emotional aspects, rather than perpetually indulging the cerebral and the institutional.  I wanted to indulge fleeting or offbeat ideas by giving them the possibility to take shape.  Maybe even indulge a few fantasies here and there.  And I wanted to be unapologetically self-indulgent.

That last bit has been surprisingly difficult.  Not so much the self-indulgence but the unapologetic.  It’s amazing how much expectation there is from yourself and others to get back to work, to be a grown up, to be available, to put a deposit on a house, to not waste time and opportunities.  For the first couple of months I had to contend with redundancy life change guilt, like I had to justify my intentions and account for my investment in myself.  In a way I think the overtness of this self-indulgent blog and the hike project itself are about making my choices seem tangible.

In any case, the indulgence report card to date is pretty good: yoga retreat in Byron Bay, hiking and canoeing in Katherine, retreating into my own little world of doing not much balanced with oodles of positive and challenging activities including pilates, pottery, gardening, reading, studying (MEd) and walking.  Oh, and Chel has been doing lots of leaping.

Next year is too far ahead to project the next word with certainty.  There is still more indulgence to dish out.  But I’m tossing around the idea of 2014: The Year of Exposure. Now, when I say I’ll be exposing myself don’t get all hot and bothered expecting this site to cross into XXX territory…but I will be exposing myself to different ideas and things, and exposing me to you the reader.  With the hikes will come exposure to the natural elements and environments.  I will be exposed to risk.  I want to take interesting time-exposed photography. And by some point I hope this blog attains exposure to a community of regular readers.

But I’m still prepared to indulge other word considerations.

So that’s how it works.  Anyone have any ideas for themselves?

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12 comments on “The Year of Indulgence

  1. Eric Carlson
    25/08/2013

    Freedom is my word. I believe that we all have the ability to be free to live our lives as we dream. I work daily towards my dreams in hopes to inspire others to go live theirs.

    • njd1insulin
      25/08/2013

      Life with a George Michael soundtrack. Maybe my hike project needs a theme song. How many songs with ‘intrepid’ are out there, I wonder.

      Thanks for your word and your inspiration, Eric.

  2. inthedarkshadowofimagination
    16/09/2013

    peregrination. it’s for 2014, creeping into 2013…but stolen the mind already.

    • njd1insulin
      17/09/2013

      A most excellent choice. It might even have to become my 2014 backup word, kind of like a middle name.

      • Anonymous
        18/09/2013

        Thanks, and nice idea, but then always have been partial to middle names.

      • inthedarkshadowofimagination
        18/09/2013

        Made a typo and was rendered anonymous.

  3. tlohuis
    14/10/2013

    Wellness. I’m tired of being sick, which isn’t going to change, but I want to be able to get up out of this bed and have some kind of life, whatever that may look like.

    • njd1insulin
      15/10/2013

      Well then (pun intended) I reckon that’s a great one to guide you through. Even when you have those most crapola days it can help to have the big picture word to keep you going or reflect on (works for me). Thanks for sharing your word.

  4. inthedarkshadowofimagination
    12/11/2013

    Every alternate word harks back to peregrination, but liking walkabout a lot. Feeling the need to move, spiritually and physically, and it’s time to throw discombobulated, the ’13 interloper out.

    • njd1insulin
      13/11/2013

      Clarity from wandering about. Like it.

      Got to reevaluate mine. Don’t think exposure is right.

      • inthedarkshadowofimagination
        14/11/2013

        I like it. It says so much, more than I can write here, it is your blog.
        But what would life be without exposure?

  5. njd1insulin
    14/11/2013

    To be discussed…perhaps on the way to Little Desert sometime.

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