Well, another year is in the history books and a new one has begun…WOW – time just sails by in the blink of an eye! Here are my New Year’s Day reflections and a look forward…
2008 – Almost everyone I talk to mentions to some degree about how 2008 was a bad year for them. Even earlier in the year, before the economy and other issues started hitting everyone so hard, people were thinking it wasn’t one of their better years. For me personally, 2008 was a bland year — some good, some not so good, but I don’t have much that sticks out as being events that will make 2008 truly memorable in a good way!
In general, we watched the economy spiral out of control and slide into a recession, impacting every aspect of our lives. We watched history in the making as the first black President was elected into office – something that has already impacted and inspired many, but it is too early to determine what direction his Presidency will take and what, if any, lasting impact he’ll have on the world.
As for my personal reflections…it seems like just about everything in 2008 came with a double edged sword – good and bad all intertwined together resulting in mixed feelings and emotional conflict…
My health was on a wild roller coaster throughout much of the year. I spent several months forcing myself to do routine tasks and passing up things I would have enjoyed doing, but knew I just didn’t have the energy and ability to do. I finally changed doctors (absolutely nothing against the previous doc – I adored him – but I just needed a different approach) and several tests and medicine changes later, I got my life back!!! But, I’m not so sure I ever really snapped out of it emotionally and got back into the full swing of activities that I have so enjoyed in years past.
My career, as with everything, was full of mixed emotions. At the beginning of the year, I applied for a new position at work and got it! A major promotion for me and a whole new direction in what was a fairly steady career path. It was exciting, challenging and NEW – just what I needed!!! But, soon, the economy started taking its toll on all businesses and the impact and high stress level was intense and affected us all.
Movies — if you’ve read this blog much, you know I LOVE movies and go to the theater a LOT!!! But, since I only started this blog in August of 2007, there is no comparison to previous years to show that I actually saw a lot fewer movies than usual. This is because there weren’t a lot of movies that sparked much interest for me. It was a really “blah” year for movies! There were large gaps where I didn’t go see any movies at all! And most of the ones I did see didn’t touch me the way most movies do. In looking back over listings of all the movies released in 2008, I actually saw a very small percentage of them AND there are only three that stand out as being truly memorable for me:
My Mom had a hip replaced early in the year – it was a long and horrible ordeal and recovery, but she’s doing well and was even able to make the trip down here for the holidays!
In early December, my nephew and his wife announced they are having a baby – the baby will be the first to start a whole new generation in our family…what does that tell you about how spoiled this kid is going to be????
On December 19th, I lost my favorite Great Aunt! Aunt Betty was my Grandmother’s sister – the youngest of five brothers and sisters and the last to leave us. We were very close and I loved her dearly!
Facebook— I signed up for Facebook a few months ago just to have an account so I could be a fan of The Rant and didn’t think I would actually do anything with it…..well, it has turned out to be a lot of fun AND a way to connect to friends that I haven’t heard from in many years!!! I have connected to several friends I graduated from High School with, a couple other friends from school years, and even my first high school sweet heart!!! Some I have been in contact with through the years and this is just another way to stay in touch — some I haven’t heard from since we left high school and went our separate ways! It has been GREAT!!!
Communities In Schools – We had another highly successful fundraiser – the 3rd Annual Benefit Gala for Children! It was a wonderful event! The economy hurt us and we didn’t raise as much as last year, but we raised more than I was expecting when we started seeing the economic impacts on the community!!! Our Executive Director left to take a job with Lee County Schools and our Program Coordinator left to attend Law School — all right at the height of Gala planning!!! But, we found replacements and the Gala and all the regular programs went on without a hitch!
2009 – So, what do I think 2009 may have in store for me? I hope it will bring more positive excitement – be less bland – and give me a ton of things to write about in my annual Christmas letter to family and friends!!! Some of the things I hope to do to make 2009 a great year for me, personally, are:
- Get myself back on track – snap out of it and get back to a point where I am an active participant in my own personal life! I vow to take on a “take care of me first” attitude! Not that I plan to become selfish at the expense of all my other interests and obligations, but I really need to focus on my physical and personal well being this year — find a way to stop worrying so deeply about the things I have little or no control over and stop holding back on doing things for myself because it might mean I won’t have the time or money to do things that are more of a benefit to others (even though that also brings me a lot of personal joy – I just need to find a better balance of the two)! I’m good at telling others to do it, but really bad about doing it for myself! That has to change! I have already taken a few steps in that direction over the past couple of months or so:
- I purchased a membership at Natural Balance and I now have a routine monthly appointment rotating massages and facials to pamper myself and relieve stress.
- I booked a trip to Hawaii in the spring – 4 days and 3 nights on Oahu with two of my dearest friends! I don’t know why, but this took a lot of soul searching and personal justification before I finally just decided to do it — it wasn’t all that expensive and it isn’t like I’m gonna be gone for a long time — it should have been a no-brainer….
- I WILL PAINT THE INSIDE OF MY HOUSE!!!! This has been on my “to do” project list since I bought my house in December 2003. I have put it off and done other projects every year!! I am still looking at white walls in every room in the house — I am still avoiding putting too many pictures and other decorations on the walls because I plan to paint “soon” — I am sitting here five years later still putting it at the top of the “to do” list in the same priority position it has been knocked out of for the past five years!!! This is the year of painting!!!
- I will eat out less and cook more…I used to love to cook and was a good cook!! But, I do it so infrequently over the past couple of years that I find I’m losing my touch – things I have cooked from instinct and memory for years just don’t turn out the same anymore! I need to get back into the habit of cooking and get that skill back!
- I hope the New York Yankees have a banner year and they win the World Series!!!
- I hope that the economy turns around and gets strong again!
- I hope this time next year everyone is saying what a great year it was for them!
- I hope I have a long list of wonderful memories to account for in my New Year’s Day post on January 1, 2010!!!
I wish everyone a happy, healthy, prosperous new year!