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2023 - Starting the year of with rest and ease

A few years ago, my husband (then fiancé) and I went to Mexico with his mom, Aunty, uncle, and cousin. They have timeshares at a resort and booked a reservation when it was available- 2nd week of January. There was nothing special about this time, and it just happened to be the time they had the best availability for the type of rooms we wanted. Unbeknownst to them, My husband and I were stressed out professionally- I was working at a top-tier law firm in NY, ridden with toxicity, office politics, colleagues who were better served as cast mates in the movie “mean girls” and of course,, a smidgen of racism and indignities. Hubby, on the other hand, was dealing with the craziness of the first year of residency at a hospital with the top 5 list of busiest emergency rooms in the nation. Yes, we were excited to get away and get some sun, but we didn’t think much of it because we were both going through alot professionally.

It turned out to be one of the most relaxing times in our lives. I went snorkeling for the first (and last) time, we went horseback riding and danced with fire dancers while eating deep-fried whole snappers on the beach and watching the sunset. We screamed our problems away into the ocean and took cute Snapchats for our followers.

It was amazing.

And I believe it set the pace for our year. We got married, traveled to Italy for our honeymoon, started working on having our family, and we both switched jobs and moved - I started working for the city as a special counsel on a project which was less stressful and toxic. Hubby transferred to a different hospital where he thrived.

It was then I made a vow that when we were somewhat situated in life, I would love to go on vacation every January as a way to start the year on a restful, playful note.

6 years and 2 kids later, we went for our first-ever family vacation in Montego Bay, Jamaica. And it was awesome. We slept in, ate and drank as much as we wanted, and then ate some more, floated in the lazy River, took long walks on the beach at sunset, sang karaoke while our kids passed out on the stroller, made friends, and so much more. I was intentional about doing things for myself, so I went to Pilates in the morning twice during my stay, had a much-needed 90-minute deep tissue massage, and hung out with a friend o just made. Hubby had some alone time and went sailing in the beautiful sea, played table tennis, and hung out at the local coffee shop. It was great.

I was intentional about not working while I was on vacation so I left my laptop behind (but brought my iPad just in case) and limited the time I spent on my phone. Hubby brought his laptop but used it only once; for 30 mins. This was the first time I completely felt unplugged on vacation since before starting law school. It was relaxing, fun, rejuvenating and everything a vacation should be.

Starting the year with a vacation sets the pace of the year for me. It reminded me to put myself first and continue doing the things that bring me the most joy - spending time with my family and enjoying the little moments.



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