Monday, January 08, 2007
The 23rd good thing about Lagos: Looking forward to a big lifestyle change that hopefully will help me keep my New Year's resolutions.
It's been a long time since I've written. The project my husband is working on has gone through some real stormy seas and it looks to me like the company may pull out of it. Brent thinks that it will take some time for them to actually do this -- and there's still a chance that they'll hang on and the economics may turn in their favor. We decided that it's too tenuous to sell the house now, but we want to get going on the full expatriate benefits package, which won't start until I move over there. So -- we've found someone to watch the house for us and I plan on going over there at the end of January for a couple of months. Brent just went back, but he is planning on coming back for meetings in Houston at least by the last week in January, and if my visa is ready, I'll be able to go back with him. I'll be in Lagos until the beginning of April, when my daughter is due to have her first child in Boston. I'll be with her as long as is helpful, and then I'll come back to Houston. I'll spend the end of April and May here, rehearsing with the Symphony Chorus for our European tour, which begins the last week of May. Hopefully by this time, we'll know if we should sell the house and make a more permanent move. It will be a better time to sell a house, anyway. So hopefully the house will do survive our absence okay, and it won't be a nightmare getting it in shape to sell after a few months of neglect. Anyway, my son in his blog listed some of his New Year's Resolutions, so I decided to do the same here. I'm looking ahead to some big changes in Lagos and realize that one has to go into life there with different expectations and a positive mindset to survive and be happy in a place where much of life is very challenging. 1. I feel the need to be more prayerful. I would especially like to be more consistent with a prayer and meditation time each morning. I really think this is important living in a place where you face some very real risks just with going about your daily activities. And because Lagos is a place with such chaos, starting each day with an activity inviting peace into my mind and heart will be really essential. 2. I want to live with a spiritual mindset where I can ask God in prayer to lead me each day to places where I can serve and do some good. With moving to a new place, there's always a big freeing up of time until you get sucked into new activities. When I leave the busy-ness and many commitments of my life here, it will allow me to be free to put my life in God's hands and let His Spirit help me discover how I should spend my time. 3. I'll be living in an apartment that, although very adequate, doesn't have many of the things that make my life easier in my home. So I realize that I need to resolve to let go of THINGS, and be happy with less and make do without many of the comforts and possessions that here in Houston I consider pretty much essential. Of course, it's easier knowing that at first I will just be there for 2+ months and then I'll be back to all my "stuff." It's not hard to camp out for that long. But I'm hoping I'll realize that I can live happily with many fewer possessions, and that knowledge will make it easier to do the down-sizing that will still need to be done if we end up selling the house and moving for a longer period of time. 4. Of course, each year I have the requisite dieting and exercise resolutions. I think living in Lagos will make this one much easier. Food is VERY expensive there and there's not all the appetizing options that are so tempting here in the US, so, although eating healthily will be more challenging, I think it will be easier to eat less. And the past few years I've developed some really healthy exercise practices that I know I'll continue there, even though the apartment exercise room is a pale substitute for the 24 hour Fitness club that I frequent here. But with fewer regular commitments, I'm sure I'll make time each day for exercise. Okay -- that's enough for now!