Happy Belated New Year: Still Hoping for a Prosperous 2020!

“Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing towards what will be.” – Khalil Gibran

‘Twas the final day of the first month of 2020! How are you doing?!

I didn’t take a chance to share my reflections here, about the New Year and the End of the Decade…Admittedly, I haven’t been able to write in this space as often as I’d like to. But as noted in some previous posts, I do feel a sense of a “homepage” when I return to this website, especially after a long time. That’s how I felt today, and I thought I should post something….anything….I am reminded why I started this personal blog, now almost four years ago, as a form of self-empowerment, perhaps a sometimes much-needed ‘pick-me-up’… and more... still yet to be explored.. the mystery and excitement of the unwritten…

In a previous post, I talked about Reflections from a decade in DC, 10 years “livin’ the dream” in Washington, DC, which just happened to be this decade that just ended… I wrote about some of the challenges I went through, and reflected on what I was able to achieve…

This year, 2020, I hope to share more of the pieces that have remained in “draft” status for some time, and write more frequently, perhaps shorter posts. I also do plan to update and revamp this entire website including some of the pages involving more valuable content. I hope to take some time this coming summer for that. So please feel welcome to return to this space in the near future!

Here we are… now going into the second month of the decade and collectively we’ve had quite a rough start…

Since day 2 of 2020, the US almost started a war with Iran, a Ukrainian plane carrying 176 passengers was shot down, Australia endured terrible forest fires and continues to be on fire, more mass shootings in America, and we just lost one of the greatest sports stars in the world in a tragic accident, …so it hasn’t been the smoothest start…

At a personal level, I’ve had a rough start as well…though I was able to accomplish and partake in some important things this month, it wasn’t that “one thing”…that “one thing” that has consumed my entire life for nearly a decade…but more so the past few years… If you know me…you definitely know what that is!

I certainly wanted to be in a different place right now for my doctorate studies and academic career. I am still working on completing my first draft of my dissertation, managing several hurdles and setbacks from the past year since returning from fieldwork, while continuously facing the challenging task of navigating through a large data corpus. But I have at least begun to understand that dwelling on time lost, will lead to more loss of time. I’ve got to believe that 2020 will be the year that I finally become Dr. ETK, Godwilling, and whether or not I will make it in time to “get hooded” in the ceremony this May, the most important thing is that I will have produced a quality dissertation. One that I hope will contribute to existing scholarship, and add value to future policies…. because that’s the primary pursuit. That’s why I chose “the journey” over simply getting a PhD. As more time passes from my fieldwork, I still see value in what was completed and continue to use the “voices from the field” to maintain the necessary stamina. I have faith that I will see some light very soon...

And there is still time to turn things around, always and at all levels, and make this a promising year. There can be no silver linings when it comes to grief and loss of life, but gratitude on what we have and the reminder of making the most of every ‘opportunity,’ is important…

Certainly, I see the blessings, signs that God is indeed on my side, in spite of the challenges he presents me.... and when I thank Him, I am able to tell Him that “I understand.” To be able to do this, to be able to say “I understand,” even when I don’t quite understand, instead of “Why Me?,” is a major sign of “progress” and a recognition of my personal growth. We understand that we may never understand why we are chosen to endure certain obstacles, and this is essential in the acceptance of our reality, grounding us to our truths, and ensuring that our dreams are not fantasy, that they’re realistic enough to fight for….to contribute something for the human family while spending precious time away from the people we love…

Perhaps we never fully grasp why God or whatever divine force gives us certain challenges, but that simple knowledge of there being a “good reason” for the internal jihad is sufficient for one to keep treading forward, and keep fighting the enemy within.

There are moments when you want to press the rewind button and start all over… And in a way that is possible. In any moment in time. We can just “refresh” the page, and rewrite our stories…

I hope the first month of 2020 went well for you, and I remain hopeful for a prosperous new year, for myself, and for all of you….For more beautiful blessings to emerge in this new decade

So I’m going to hit “refresh”… and

Wish you all a very happy new year!

with peace, love, warmth, and blessings,

Your Elsa

Warrior KQueen

“You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.” – Margaret Thatcher

“If you fall behind, run faster. Never give up, never surrender, and rise up against the odds.” – Jesse Jackson

“Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” – Harriet Beecher Stowe

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