This post is in collaboration with Wescom Credit Union.
This past week was not easy. My son has been with other family and my fiancé was in Miami at a graduation. It was the first time I really felt what it’s like to live in an empty nest during the holidays. I threw myself quite the pity party until I got a random call from an old friend who wanted to catch up.
It was a much-needed conversation. I shared that my health was better, my son is in college, my relationship is great and that my business did well in its first year. Here I am in the middle of an epic woe-is-me fiesta, and I had nothing but great things to report.
When I hung up, it sunk in. I was not seeing all that I have to be thankful for. I was not seeing all of the light and beauty that surrounds me every day.
I moved a lot of mountains this year and I needed to feel proud of all that I accomplished. My son also did well his first semester in college and my fiancé was recently given a promotion. I needed to shift the mindset. The holidays are a time for reflection, giving back and celebration. And although it’s going to take me some time to get used to my new living situation, my cup is beautifully full.
Related: Women and finances
When my fiancé got home, we went out to dinner and stopped by the Riverside Festival of Lights to have a drink and see the decorations. He’d never been and I really needed a dose of holiday sparkle. We toasted to all of the blessings we had this year and all of the ones to come in 2019. As we snuggled up on a bench with our cups of hot cocoa, we talked about ways we can make this an amazing new chapter in our lives. As we shared ideas, we realized that we have not been on a vacation in a long time. We’ve traveled for family and work, but vacation? Nope. It hasn’t happened.
That’s definitely something we want to change. Following all of the tips I received from Wescom (a Southern California financial institution and Festival of Lights, Riverside sponsor) so far, I’m going to make this a reality by writing down my long-term and short-term goals once the holiday season is over. A very-needed vacation is top on the list. With the help of their financial advisors, I can and will wisely carve that out without sacrificing college payments, retirement funds and business costs.
In the meantime, I’m just going to enjoy the present and all of the light around me. So much to be grateful for.
If you’re in southern California and looking for some holiday sparkle and magic, I highly suggest you stop the Festival of Lights with your family. The festivities are happening until January 6th!