2012 In Review

I’ve not been overly enthusiastic to write this post, or any post, for that matter. It’s not that this has been an awful year – it has and it hasn’t. It’s just life, and some years are more complicated than others. It also has something to do with more and more distance coming between me and the blogging world. I don’t really read blogs much anymore and then on two separate occasions this year I found silly (and wildly inaccurate) speculations made about me at GOMI. Since I haven’t participated in blogger forums in years and years now, it was a weird disconnect, to read about myself and my supposed motives here, as if they have any connection to that world whatsoever. Someone actually thought I’d written a post *in code* to another blogger.

I read that and was absolutely gobsmacked. It really hadn’t dawned on me that someone would think my blog served that sort of purpose. Maybe when I was in my early twenties, and was a bit of a misguided asshat in a miserable relationship at a miserable point in my life, I might have done such a thing, but to think that I’d do that now? Oy. You can’t win.

Even though I haven’t had a presence anywhere online of any consequence in at least five years, it was weird to learn that people were still gossiping about why it is that I don’t speak to a handful of bloggers anymore, or what really happened at my first wedding, or why I didn’t write in more detail about my postpartum depression diagnosis.

(For the record on the PPD? Two doctors and a psychiatrist specializing in PPD, who came recommended to me by my midwife, all diagnosed me with PPD. I just didn’t want to be one of those people who shared every single detail online, and I received treatment for quite some time, and that treatment included more support from our families and more rest for me. Jesus. Some of you really are just assholes.)

It’s true what they say: The stupid, mean stuff you do when you’re younger can follow you for years to come. So even though I have long put the “old me” out of mind, for some folks it’s always going to be 2002. Some of it is karma, to be sure, but some of it is just people with not enough to do.

But all of this got me to thinking about what my resolutions for the next year should be.

Health-wise, this is the first year I have none to speak of. Since doing The Ultimate Reset this summer, my health has changed dramatically. With holidays being the exception, I don’t eat much in the way of animal products, except for the occasional egg. It’s seemed to stave off the chronic stomach pains and bloating I’d always felt, and therefore was self-conscious about. You marry that with plenty of fruits, veggies and water, and it’s been the right combination for me. I have no idea how much I weigh but the dress I bought for Christmas Mass was a 10 and the last pair of jeans I bought was an 8, so there you go.

Once again I’m running the NOLA Half-Marathon and, in another feat I chalk up to the “vegan-ish” diet, I went from running 12-minute miles to 10:20-minute miles. It’s sort of amazing, and I never thought I’d be any faster than I was for all of those years. I’d definitely like to be practicing yoga more, though, and I need to figure that out, too.

Work is good. I’ve had a great opportunity open up for me at work, and it’s revived my spirits in a big way. I’m incredibly lucky to work where I do, and my goal is to be brave enough to fail. I’m doing work I love again, and with that comes the chance to challenge myself.

My family is wonderful. My husband is funny, kind and an amazing partner in parenting. I love my kid, and every single day is, well, not a holiday, but a reminder of how lucky I am that we found each other. I adore that girl, and think she’s about as amazing as they come.

So, really, when I thought long and hard about what I want to resolve to do this year, it’s this:

I want to not give a fuck what everyone thinks. 

When I look at the things that have held me back or hindered me, even gotten me into trouble, it’s my inability to stand on my own and be OK with who I am and the choices I make. I’m stymied by things I can’t literally control, and try too hard to please everyone. Whether it’s online miscreants who I hung out with in chat rooms eons ago or my colleagues or my parents or my neighbors and on and on and on. I’ve lived too long in this little space in my head that continually conjures up scenarios that are not based in anything other than my own insecurities. I’ve allowed that nearly every choice I make to be marred with what someone else will think of it. There are myriad reasons for this, but at 36, it’s just laziness on my part. It’s hard work to not care so damn much.

I don’t want to be insensitive or aggressive, but I’d like to be less of a coward. Thinking that everyone and anyone cares a lick of what I’m doing is incredibly self-involved, and it’s keeping me from being a better person. It’s actually making me worse, since trying to please everyone means you really please no one.

I read something not too long ago that didn’t resonate at first, but upon later thought, surely did: It’s none of my business what someone else thinks of me. Isn’t that the truth? It really isn’t my business. I can first do no harm, but mainly I just can’t make it so I’m everyone’s cup of tea and that’s their business, not mine.

Here’s to minding my own business in 2013…

(I’m skipping a whole host of questions that I don’t normally. Just the ones I feel like answering…)

1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before? Lord. Not much.

2. Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I did! I stretched and kept healthy habits. This year I want to read a book a week, give up all electronic equipment at least an hour before bed and see the above.

3. Did anyone close to you die? Yes. It was hard and sad in ways I wasn’t prepared for it to be.

4. What places did you visit? New Buffalo, San Diego, San Antonio, Pennsylvania and Athens, Ohio

5. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Work has been pretty awesome. But, really, keeping my sweet girl up and running and thriving feels like the trump card. Around August she truly stopped being a baby and went into Full-Blown Toddler and it’s been awesome to watch.

6. What was the best thing you bought? I hate the word “bought” in this context, but the best money we spent this year was Abigail’s nanny. That woman is a godsend and we’re blessed to have her in our lives.

7. Whose behavior merited celebration? Abigail. Honestly, it’s amazing watching a human being grow up right in front of your eyes.

8. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? As last year, I can’t take anyone harming and abusing kids. Just can’t.

9. Where did most of your money go? Mortgage, nanny, food.

10. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Abigail Grace. Forever and always.

11. What song will always remind you of 2011? “Some Nights” by Fun.

12. Compared to this time last year, are you:

a) happier or sadder? Happy, but a bit rough around the edges.

b) richer or poorer? Poorer in some ways, richer in others.

13. What do you wish you’d done more of? Reading and seeing live music. We’ve gotten so much better about date nights so this needs to be a priority.

14. What do you wish you’d done less of? See 2013’s resolution.

15. How did you spend Christmas in 2011? Family, in-town.

16. What was your favorite TV program?  Breaking Bad. Holy smokes. I love that show. And Homeland.

17. What was the best book you read? Oh man, there were a few. Definitely loved The Gift of Imperfection.

18. What was your favorite film of this year? Pitch Perfect was pretty sweet. We’re shit at seeing movies.

19. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? “It’s probably time to throw that away.”

20. What political issue stirred you the most? This election brought me joy, as did how it helped in identifying who The Crazies are.

21. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011. It’s probably nothing that a hot bath and a good night’s sleep can’t fix.