Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Here's to 2010

the year that was not quite as bad as the one before. I'm not going to be sorry to see it go, though it was much better than 2009. In 2010, I learned about loss, about family, about love, and about myself.

This year, I lost my Aunt Joan. She was my grandmother, and I think about her often. My Aunt Anna Marie lost her mother, who was another grandmother-figure to me, and another strong, wonderful woman. I miss them both, and will do my best to honor their memories. We lost so many other family members that one of my hopes for 2011 is that it will be the year nobody dies.

In 2010, I learned what it's like to enjoy your job and to contribute in a real way to a company's success. Conversely, I learned what it's like to be told you're no longer contributing, and to handle professional adversity with professionalism and class (mostly, anyway).

This year, I reminded myself how strong I am and trained and raised money and walked in the SGK 3 Day for the Cure. It's still one of the best things I have ever done, ever, and is likely to remain high on the list. I didn't honestly think I could walk as far as I did, or that I would be as moved as I was to participate in such a huge, joyful event. It turns out, sometimes my body doesn't fail me.

2010 was a year of love. I spent more time with my Jersey friends and my family than I have in a long time, and I have made some amazing new friends who I am honored to know so well. I put as much love out into the world as I could, and have had so much love returned to me.

I learned that I can push myself hard and that I can do amazing things. I also learned that when I push myself too hard, I make myself sick and miserable and that nobody benefits from that. So for this next year, I'm going to concentrate on making time for myself, to do the things I do for me. Blogging is on that list, and so is cooking. I can count the number of home-cooked meals I have eaten this month on one hand. That's not healthy or fun.

What 2010 wasn't a year of was time or balance or rest. It ended up being a year of frantic running and squeezing time for me and the practical bits of living (like laundry and vacuuming) in around everything else. I gave so much of myself and my time that I didn't have any of me left for me. So I'm working on deciding between two themes for 2011, either peace or balance. I could use more of both in my life.

So here's to a 2011 with more blogging (some of it might be interesting), more relaxing, more real food, more enjoying the moments I'm in, and just as much love (can't start slacking now). Here's to a 2011 with less insane schedules, no major losses, and much less drama.

In Review:
--Phew, 2010 was a bad time to be part of our family. We had a lot of losses.
--2010 definitely = love. Much love. So hey, mission accomplished.
--2011=? Either peace or balance. We'll see which speaks to me more over the next few days.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

I love Christmas. It's my favorite time of the year. I love the magic, and the glow that everything has, and that for one small part of the year, people are willing to give and to create joy for others. But here it is, two weeks before Christmas, I'm not feeling it. I'm not ready. I have looked within myself to find that inner child who glories in the lights and the songs and the giving and you know what? She seems to be sleeping. Or maybe she wandered off.

I don't know quite why it is, but I am just not thrilled for Christmas. The house isn't decorated yet, we don't have a tree, and I haven't done any of my shopping yet. I'm not humming carols, I'm not baking cookies, I'm not bullying other people into enjoying the season.

Maybe it's because I'm tired. I feel as though I've spent the entire year running, filling every spare moment of my time. I have been better about saying no sometimes, but my free time is still packed full. I keep telling myself it's only a few more weeks, and then things will calm down. But that never actually happens. I'm starting to realize that there is no calm. And I take a day off every now and then and spend the day in bed lounging. But that never-finished to do list keeps niggling in the back of my mind.

Maybe it's because I enjoyed Thanksgiving so much. The day with my family at the parents' place was great, and Second Thanksgiving here was a lot of fun. We finally finished most of the leftovers (which I loved) and I got to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, which is something I love. Goodness knows I have so much to be thankful for, and that I remember it every day.

Maybe it's because I got demoted at work. Last week, I was called into the HR office and told that I was no longer qualified for my job, and that it was being phased out of our social media strategy. I'm back to answering phones, working in the Customer Service department. I lost the first job I've ever actually liked, and there's no chance of my being able to do anything similar to it. I'm good at customer service, and that's where my company plans to use me. So hey, I'm not unemployed. I'm not even making any less money. But I hate customer service. And I hate feeling like I've taken such a step backwards in the company.

Maybe it's because things with Jim still aren't great. I talked to him in October and told him what I need, want, and won't compromise on in the future (marriage, children, and a fair division of housework). I told him he has a whole year to figure out what his goals are (for us and in general), and then we can discuss whether those are compatible or not. But I have this feeling in the pit of my stomach that he is going to decide he's not prepared to discuss marriage and children as a definite (i'm not saying we need to be married in a year or anything, but i need to know that jim is okay with it and it will happen. same with kids. i am by no means ready yet, but when i am, i don't want to find out that jim can't stand the thought of having children). It feels like I'm spending the next several months trying not to say goodbye, which isn't fair to Jim. He has plenty of time to do some soul-searching, and he may yet surprise me. I am certainly hoping he is.

So I don't know if any one of these things, or a combination of all of them is keeping me from getting in to Christmas this year. But really, if we were to skip it all together this year, I'd be okay with it. I'm really hoping that I'll get into the groove next week, when we get a tree, finish the decorating (we'll start this week) and I do the grocery shopping for Christmas dinner. We'll see. Here's hoping that you're ready and waiting for Christmas morning, with better spirits than I can scrape up.