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Just Keep Moving....

Posted on the 09 April 2021 by Jkinyoun @jkinyoun

Just Keep Moving....

A family photo at the top and individual pictures on the exact day of someone’s birthday

 The spring brings flowers, showers, sunshine, new life and re-emerged beauty from the blandness of winter. It also brings a large swath of birthdays in my extended family. For me this timing seems to certify the reality of spring- the long empty winter has ended and the outdoor parties have begun. Turning a year older brings a newness that suggests possibility, room to grow, and fresh goals.

One of the ways we recognize these milestones in my family is with a calendar of photos from the previous year. Someone in the family designates themself as the person in charge- for many years this was my mother. Then, everybody sends that person their favorite pictures taken since the previous year. Traditionally this process took place in the fall because we presented the calendar to my grandmother in her nursing facility for Christmas. However, my grandmother passed away almost ten years ago and we have continued the tradition without her- because it creates such a piece of art for family historical records.

Since my grandmother passed away, the person in charge has changed a bit- I’ve done it a few times and some of my aunts volunteered. Every Christmas, the person in charge sends out an artistically arranged calendar for their kitchen/living room wall. Every day our favorite memories are displayed in front of us for nostalgia- to remember how lucky with are to have each other and the support of a wonderful family. It is also so that everybody knows exactly which day to send out birthday cards. I learned that putting someone’s picture on the little square that represents their birthday really does make a difference- the visual seems to prompt me to send a card. With just the words “Mom’s Birthday” it is easy for the eyes to gloss over the event that day- the picture makes it ostentatiously advertised each time I see it on the wall. With a photo reminder, I cannot forget that person’s birthday.

Every birthday, just like every New Year’s Eve, brings the possibility for change, for reflection and for possibility. I like my father’s advice- “Just keep moving, don’t stop.” This applies to when you are on a winning streak- perhaps collecting qualifying events for the next level of swimming championship, playing the piano for a scholarship, or running a 5K race. It’s easy to keep moving when things are going well. When things are hard it is even more important to keep moving- you don’t want to stay stuck in the place where things are hard. Finish something that is hard- move through it and bring it to completion. Then, try to take on a project that perhaps brings more success. But don’t stop moving. And while you are moving keep a point of inspiration in front of you- in my case the family calendar. Somehow-looking at those photos on my wall gives me the inspiration to keep moving- not just when things are going well.

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