Saturday, January 1st, 2011 • 2 Comments on Happy New Year!
I thought January 1 was an appropriate time to check back in on my sadly neglected blog. Actually, I’ve meant to update things around here for weeks, but with baby’s first birthday and the holidays… well, yeah. It didn’t happen.
My brief summary of 2010 would be that it was the hardest, most difficult, most emotional, most exhausting year of my life. Hands down. I wasn’t at my physical or mental best for the first half of the year and I spent the second half of the year trying to regroup and find my balance. I was more successful in some ways than others. I can say I ended the year in a much better mental state than I started it, but honestly anything above being the sobbing puddle of weak, exhausted, lonely new mom I was on January 1, 2010 would have been an improvement. The best thing I can say about that time frame, pre-babysitter (and saying she saved my life is not much of an exaggeration), is that I survived it. I survived it. Can I get my cookie now?
Things got incrementally better, first with Ashleigh coming in to babysit 20ish hours, then with Patrick sleeping through the night pretty solidly by 3 months, then Jay coming home in May. The second half of the year is a blur of cookouts and holidays and catching up and reconnecting with friends and writing, editing and drinking coffee. In other words, the second half of the year appeared almost normal, with only the addition of a baby to mark the dramatic change that had happened in my life.
But as I wrote in November, change doesn’t come in an instant and sometimes can’t even be traced to a single day or week or month. While Jay’s homecoming marked the end of my tour of duty as a single mom, it wasn’t an overnight change from bad year to good year. It was a series of adjustments, finding my balance and my way in the quest for the life that I want. Here I am on January 1, still not quite sure how to measure the changes I’ve experienced or the things I’ve endured. In some ways, I’m bitter. In other ways, I’m grateful. I am who I am because of my experiences, yes? And I have to say, I like myself more today than I did a year ago today.
In the midst of the parenting alone and then coparenting with a partner who had been gone for 8 months, I had my work to keep me sane (or drive me even more insane, at times). I didn’t write nearly as much as I would have liked (ditto 2009, unfortunately), but I saw the publication of my first anthology and did some readings both here and in Portland to promote it, I compiled and submitted my second anthology and I signed contracts for two more anthologies. I kind of blink in shock when I realize that I managed all of that given the stress and time constraints I was under.
I wasted a fair amount of time in 2010 chasing daydreams and longing for things that weren’t meant to be. Illusions shattered, I am tired but grounded and determined at the start of 2011. I’m ready to start a new year focused on family, friends and my beloved writing. I’m also intent on maintaining both my balance and my peace, come what may.
Wishing you peace in 2011. And I promise to blog more, too.