The challenges of 2023


A belated Happy New Year to all my friends and followers. As we look forward to another year, what will 2023 bring for us?

For many it spells the misery of penny pinching. Not enough money for food, heating or holidays. We also face a year of unrest with strikes at home and wars abroad, especially in Ukraine. But what does it mean for you personally?

For me, it spells a number of challenges. Firstly, my husband and I have to face the declining health and mobility of my mother-in-law, who is now 92 years old. She has done very well to live independently up until this point but now we are seeing her more wobbly on her feet and more inclined to fall. She is also less inclined to feed herself properly. Fortunately, we live only ten minutes away and can assist fairly easily but of course, this impacts our time, especially that of my husband. What will the future mean for her? We can’t tell yet but we have to be prepared to assist and support to a greater degree in 2023.

We also have the wonderful challenge of a new grandson, born last November. Until now, he has spent his first couple of months in Portugal. His mother, Mafalda, is Portuguese and they have been living with her mother near Lisbon, so hands-on granny help. Much as we would love to provide the same level of support, my son, Adam and Mafalda’s flat is in London and we are over two hours away in Gloucestershire with the added complication of a dog – their flat isn’t dog friendly. Our grandson, Gerry or Gerard, is half English, half Portuguese, so I am challenging myself to learn Portuguese. Not the easiest of languages!

My writerly challenge is to finish the tribute book I am working on with others. It is a very special book about an Ethiopian lady, Jember Teferra, who, through her faith, saved thousands out of poverty. She died in 2021 and we are involved in bringing together all of her writings and editing them against the backdrop of a biography and photographs. The challenge is to get the book finished by Easter time.

What about after that? I am very interested in genealogy and want to write up my life’s story. I believe it has some unique aspects such as some eccentric characters, a childhood on a farm and a St Trinians-like school. I intend this to be just for the consumption of my two boys but still feel the challenge of being honest without offending those who have hurt or mistreated me. Another challenge.

What about you? Is this a year for retirement, a year with the challenge of elderly parents, a year of grandchildren or children or publishing your first book or learning a new skill? Whatever the challenge, we need to face the year with faith and hope. After all, there will never be another 2023.

About journojohnson

I qualified as a journalist in 2002 and after a period working as a freelance for Gloucester Media writing advertorials, interviews, articles and press releases I have gone on to write for lots of magazines and newspapers, both local and national. I write regularly for the Writers and Readers magazine but have also written for CPO's Inspire, the New Writer, Classic Ford, and Take a Break's My Favourite Recipes among many others. I published my first full-length historical novel. Waireka in 2018 and my romantic novella, Alpha Male in 2016. Both can be found on Amazon. Please follow the links on my book page.
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