Now that it is on its way out, let's talk about 2011 for just a minute.
This was, in some ways, the worst year of my life. I am not sorry to see it go, because during it I lost someone who had begun to mean the world to me. And when you lose someone that important, you lose hopes and dreams for the future, and you feel angry and cheated in addition to feeling sad. It was and is a devastating loss that I feel every single day.
I also spent a lot of this year in agonizing neck and shoulder pain, cranky, and pregnant. I gained more weight this year than ever before and when all was said and done and baby was out, I had 50 pounds to lose.
But on the other hand, this year was among the best of my life as well.
I grew up a lot this year. Finally, at 38, I learned to let go of some things I will never be able to control or change. I also learned to be a little nicer to people, and more forgiving. I learned to let people know I appreciate them and realized that it's much more effective to be thankful for what people do than cranky about what they don't. I gave birth to my second child this year easily and at home and fell head over heels in love with her. I watched my first child grow from a baby into a young girl, watched her learn to walk and talk and laugh and pick flowers and hug trees and draw pictures and push toy trucks and delight at the Christmas tree and smile at her new baby sister. I helped turn this household into a happy and tightly knit family of four that has begun to put down roots and establish family traditions that we will continue year after year.
I am grateful that I have reconnected with some friends and family. And this year I also got to know a whole part of my family that I previously had not. I could not be happier that I am getting to know my sister better and that my girls have their Poppa Terry and more aunts they can count. Family has become more important to me than anything else and I am so honored to have so many wonderful people in mine.
After Freyja was born and I was recovered enough, I went on Weight Watchers and started running. I am working on changing some habits I developed out of sheer laziness. Now I write down what I eat and look up the nutritional information for everything before I eat it. I eat more fruits and vegetables as snacks than I ever did before. Even better, I don't eat "elevensies" or "second breakfast" anymore. I try to think about whether I am hungry before I just eat whatever is in front of me. I walk more. I run - and what's more impressive is that I like it! I make better choices and I have goals now. And as of today, I have a cute running hoodie and matching tights from Lulu Lemon that I am just dying to get outside in. I am hoping they keep me incentivized throughout the winter and to the other side of this weight loss.
And though I've accomplished so much, no one ever stops learning and growing. I still have a lot of hard work ahead of me. I have 27 pounds to my goal weight, which I know won't be easy to achieve but I will do it. As I turn 39, I want to be more considerate and more in tune with people and their needs. I would also like to learn to be more patient with people's imperfections (including my own) and more direct when I can no longer be patient. I would like to continue to reach out to my friends and loved ones, to cultivate and maintain the relationships I have built. Maybe I'm asking for miracles, but I want to find more time in every day so that I don't have to choose between getting work done and balancing the checkbook, between doing the dishes and taking a shower, doing all of those things and getting a good night's sleep or getting together with a friend. I'd like to learn to read people better, listen more carefully, remember dates and important events, and be less uptight than I have become. I want to laugh more, write more, rest more, and hold my husband's hand more.
So goodbye to you, 2011, and hello 2012. You are a clean slate with so much potential, like a brand new baby.