Friday, 27 December 2013


"On the cusp of 2014 - a new year, the opening of a fresh chapter - I ponder my goals for the year. Why bother? I can hear your resounding scoffs. Lose weight, exercise more, learn something new, help others, blah, blah and more blah. Experts state that thirty-five percent of resolution makers will sadly break their goals before the end of January. Wow!  My thirty-six years of real estate business planning, however, are so intrinsically woven into my psyche that I find myself incapable of facing a new year without putting a goal or plan to paper.

For Christmas, one of my gifts from Matthew and Michelle was a Pandora snowflake. Since childhood, I have loved snowflakes. These winter crystal stars that drift gently from the sky are more than the "hexagonal plates" about which scientists clinically speak or the "accumulation" we all so dread. Take a moment and "smell the roses".  Peer through a magnifying glass and you will discover each magical delicate flake has a unique complex form and pattern. No two snowflakes are the same and therein lies their true beauty.

I was raised in a loving family who celebrated glorious traditions, stressed the importance of education and learning, ingrained in me that I could accomplish anything to which I set my mind, and adhered to a strong moral code. I do admit, though, that as I grew older I sensed in my Mother's behavioural messages a "what will the neighbours think" mentality. Perhaps that is the basis of the trait I like least in myself, my need to explain decisions, my need to make those decisions acceptable to others.  I endlessly explain our decision to move to Uxbridge rather than to remain in Thornhill or to move into downtown Toronto.  I feel the need explain my decision to retire from my real estate career rather than to stay in the profession until I was white-haired and bent over walking with a cane.  I find myself explaining my preference of the pool over the gym, Arizona now over Barbados, individual travel over guided tours or large cruise ships, golf over sailing......... I explain! I explain! I explain!

Enough, I now say. Henceforth, when the urge to explain overtakes me, I have decided to feel my snowflake charm, to use it as a talisman against insidious explanations.  I resolve to be like a snowflake. Unique!  Accept that each of us is different and thus, no explanations are required. I am ME!

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