Tuesday, January 9, 2018

My Word of 2017

This specific picture was taken by a guy I went to high school with, Matt Longmore, and he posted it on Instagram while he was a student at Oxford in 2016. Last January I asked him to send me the original, and it has hung on my refrigerator for 12 glorious months. 

Last January we moved into our spanking new apartment on January 1, ready for a new year, a fresh adventure, and an improved life. Then, consistent with the luck we had in 2016, we were all puking within 24 hours. I usually love goal-setting and planning for the future, but last January it wasn't on my radar. Then Chris looked across the bathroom at me and said, “2017’s word of the year is ‘healing.’” I had never chosen a word of the year before, but this had the simplicity that I needed right then. So “healing” it was.

I like to have visual anchors for my long-term goals, and the moment Chris suggested “healing,” I knew exactly what my reminder would be. Above is a picture of the Divinity School at Oxford. It was built between 1427 and 1483, which makes it (a medieval building! and) the oldest teaching hall and earliest examination hall at Oxford.

But if it looks familiar to you, as it did to me, you probably know it better as the hospital wing at Hogwarts.

All year, this picture was a calm, beautiful reminder that our home was a safe, even magical place to heal. We didn’t have skele-gro or Madam Pomfrey, but by going to therapy and exercising and being gentle and kind to each other, we were working magic in our home.

Like everyone, our healing processes are ongoing. This picture will stay up on the fridge, but it will be next to 2018’s visual anchor: a chocolate chip cookie recipe.

b perry

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