Sunday, January 02, 2011

2010 and 2011

There is a New Year's meme that has been around for a few years, but I've never done it. Jennifer reminded me of it this year, and I've decided to jump aboard. Even if I am a couple of days late.

1. What did you do in 2010 that you've never done before?

I had an unmedicated water birth. Last January, Colin was born at the Woman's Birth and Wellness Center in Chapel Hill, and it couldn't have been more perfect.

2. Did you keep your resolutions, and will you make more for this year?

I wouldn't really call it a resolution, but I did give up something significant in 2010. I quit drinking. Not counting my pregnancy, I'm coming up on a year anniversary of being dry and sober. I'm pretty proud of myself for that.

Other than that, I didn't make resolutions. I've never been a much of a resolution maker, although I tend to make changes in January. For instance, I didn't declare it a resolution, but six years ago, I stopped smoking in January. I think we are just in a mindset to make life changes at the beginning of the year, whether we call them resolutions or not.

This year, I'm calling them goals.
  • Oh to be cliche. My first goal is to lose the weight I've gained since Kevin and I got married. I would call it baby weight, but since the babies really didn't need all of those milkshakes, I've got to take the blame myself. I'm hoping for about 20 pounds, which is more than I've ever needed to lose in my life. On the one hand, it's a little daunting, but on the other hand, I'm kind of thinking, "It's only 20 pounds." We'll see.
  • Find a way to reinstate my yoga practice. Even if it's just once a week, I would really like to have Anasura yoga be part of my routine again.
  • Set up the office. Organize finances. Use the filing cabinet.
  • Have a play date set up for the boys once a week. Or at least, once every two weeks. This seems like it should be easy, but it's not. It requires planning and such, and I tend to suck at planning ahead right now.
  • Start practicing and writing again. Music, that is. My chops are so rusty I creak when I sit down at the piano.
  • Get involved in a Sunday School class.
  • Take the train to D.C. at least three times to visit Susan.
  • Bring my music collection into the 2000's.
  • Write a children's book with Mallory. 
  • Sew more.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

That would be me. Also, Kara welcomed Merin. We love baby Merin.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

No. A former classmate committed suicide, but I had lost touch with him years ago. Still, I wish I had the chance to tell him what a beautiful voice he had and that I was sorry that he was so unhappy.

5. What countries did you visit?

None. Kevin and Mallory went to Greece in December. He was speaking at a genetics conference, and then the two of them did some sightseeing in Athens together. The boys and I were going to go until we realized that the money tree we planted in the backyard had withered and died sometime in 2009.

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?

More time with Kevin.

7. What dates from 2010 will be etched upon your memory, and why?

January 24, the birth of Colin. 

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I think it's a toss up between the water birth and the whole no drinking thing. Just because I'm pretty sure I can't answer "birth" for all the questions because that will get annoying.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Letting my depression get the best of me and not seeking out help when I needed it. My physical well being suffered. My creativity suffered. My family suffered. I'm not going to let that happen again this year.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Oh my stars. When Colin was just two weeks old, I got shingles. It was one of the most painful things I have ever experienced. Of course, Dr. Google had told me that I probably had lymphoma, so I was actually really relieved to hear it was just shingles.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

I might change my mind if I gave it more thought, but what comes to mind right now is the Beatles Rockband game I got for Mallory when she graduated from middle school. It's something that we all enjoy doing as a family, and Christopher is learning all the words to Beatles tunes, which is a necessary part of his education.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

That would be Mallory, hands down. She is the most amazing teenager I've ever met. She is also the best big sister any kiddo could ever ask for. She's helpful, grateful, funny, creative, talented, smart, and changes diapers too.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

We had some serious issues with a contractor that some of our closest friends recommended. Aside from the contractor's behavior being appalling and downright frightening, when our friends stood up for him, I was crushed. I've tried not to let it be a friendship killer, but it's definitely wounded it. That breaks my heart.

14. Where did most of your money go?

What money? Kidding. We still have a roof over our heads and food on the table, so I'm grateful. Most of our money went to the kids. And the house. The never ending house projects.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Breastfeeding, natural childbirth, midwives. And, embarrassingly enough, Gymboree. I have a serious problem with needing to dress my boys in matching ensembles. It's ridiculous, but their sales really draw me in.

16. What song will always remind you of 2010?

"Tomorrow's Now Today" from the Music Together drum collection. It is what I sing while Colin is going to sleep, and it is now what Christopher requests as well for "bedtime music."

17. Compared to this time last year are you a) happier or sadder b) thinner or fatter c) richer or poorer?

I'm happier because my children multiply my happiness. I'm thinner, but only because I'm not 9 months pregnant. And I'm richer because I'm more satisfied with what I have.

18. What do you wish you had done more of?


19. What do you wish you had done less of?


20. How did you spend Christmas?

At home with my boys. Mallory was with her mother until 5:00 this year, so it was just me and the boys. We got up to find what Santa brought and look in our stockings. Then we had French toast for breakfast, and Colin took a nap. The rest of the day was spent opening a present and then playing with that present for awhile. It was completely relaxing and wonderful. 

That evening, Mallory, Papa, and a man who works with Kevin came over. We had our traditional Polish meal and the rest of the present opening. Both boys were over the top excited, and I couldn't have had a more full heart watching them.

21. Did you fall in love in 2010?

Head over heels with baby Colin.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

Current TV program favorite was Sons of Anarchy, hands down. Kevin and I also watched The Wire finally though, and it was A.Mazing.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?

I don't like that word. I don't hate anyone. There are people that I wish were not in my life or that I hadn't met, but I don't hate them. To me, that implies that I wish ill will on them, and there is no one that I know who I would want harm to come to. 

24. What was the best book you read?

The Help, by Kathryn Stockett

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

There are a few here. I discovered that Amazon has mp3 downloads and always has some free stuff. Usually, the free stuff is something indie or new - something I haven't heard before. Working my way through the Amazon downloads, I found Arcade Fire, who I know isn't a new band, but they are new to me. Which is ridiculous. I used to read Paste from cover to cover and know everything that was coming out. Now, not so much. 

However, I'm pleased that I do have a few new musicians that I'm listening to this year. New to me in 2010 were:
Another musical discovery was Jack's Big Music Show. Children's TV at it's best. We love this show so very much in our house. And Andrew Bird as "Dr. Strings"? Freaking genius.

26. What did you want and get?

Control of my birth experience. A supportive and peaceful environment in which to give birth. A beautiful and healthy son in that birth experience.

27. What did you want and not get?

This is really pushing it, because overall, I'm completely and totally grateful and satisfied, but I guess I could say a minivan. A minivan really would make parts of my life much much easier. And would also seal my fate as the woman who will never ever ever be a rock star again.

28. What was your favorite film of 2010?

Babies. I love this documentary. I could watch it over and over again. I think it's fascinating.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I turned 37, and I celebrated by realizing that I had thought all last year that I was 37, so it didn't feel like I aged at all. Go, me! I also celebrated by having shingles. Which was a crappy way to celebrate.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

If I had stayed on top of my PPD and gotten help before things got bad instead of waiting. But hindsight truly is 20/20, and I'm not sure I knew I needed help before I got to where I got. That was a horrendous sentence. Me don't write so good sometimes.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2010?

Lacking. Seriously lacking. Although I was never so happy to see a trend come back in as I was when leggings hit the scene. Mock me if you will. My legs are the only skinny thing left on me right now. And leggings with BOOTS? Fashion heaven for me.

32. What kept you sane?


33. What political issue stirred you the most?

The Wake County school board had me pretty ruffled. They are driving our school district backwards instead of forwards, and I'm nervous about the consequences that will hold.

34. Who did you miss?

My momma. My daddy. My brother and his family. Susan. My grandparents. My NMD friends. My Chelsea pup. 


35. Who was the best new person you met?

I met a lot of cool people this year, and I don't think I can choose just one. I've been meeting more people in my neighborhood who I really like. 

The boys' new music teacher is really talented, and I'm glad I met her.

I've met some really nice local bloggers who I enjoy hanging out with even though I usually skip the evening meetings due to Colin only wanting MAMA when he wakes up a bazillion times in the evening.

There are a bunch of great people I met this year. I hope that is a trend that continues in 2011.

36. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.

I don't know that I learned this lesson in 2010, but I feel like I finally applied it.

Friends come and go like seasons. Just because a season passes doesn't mean that it wasn't important, that it didn't help you grow, and that you can't remember it fondly.

And along the same lines, friendships change. If you can't change with them, then you will continue losing friends instead of keeping people who you love in your life. I have really tried to put this into practice this year. 

With one friend in particular - she is very dear to me, and we used to see each other every day, then every week, then every month, but we still talked on the phone almost daily. This year, we went months without speaking. Nothing was wrong (that I know of), but we are in different stages of life. So be it. I still love her, and I'm just considering this a phase of the friendship rather than the end of it.

Coming from the master of bridge burning, this has been huge for me.

37. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

I gotta skip this one. I've been singing way too much "Here come the ABC's" this year to have any quotable lyrics for you. Maybe next year I can quote something that was written for grownups in the year 2011. Maybe.

So happy 2011 to you and yours. I'm looking forward to a wonderful year.