2011 Recap

Now that we’ve all survived Christmas, and are relatively unscathed, its time of course to take a few moments to reflect on the past year and what’s to come. 2011 has been quite a year! I am finding it hard to believe we’re heading towards the very end of another year. Over the past year, my daughter was born, my son turned five years old, we’ve moved (a couple times). I left my job (terrifying). I’ve found new passions, lost others, and rediscovered some the old.

2011 has been a year for learning- learning things about myself, and learning what I’m capable of. I’ve always been the type of person to be self-confrontational and to face whatever I’m afraid of. Sometimes it might take longer than other times, but eventually, as long as it has nothing to do with spiders, I will face it. I did something I never would have imagined myself doing in the past- having Bella naturally. I actually had imagined doing that in the past- and thought I’d never be able to do something like that! I’ve talked in the past about how transformative this experience was and still is for me, and it will continue to be as it leads to some of my plans for this coming new year.

2011 has proved a time to realize my little guy, no matter how much I love him, will have time where he drives me Bat-Shit Crazy. (In case you’re not familiar with that term, its a description of how parents feel when they reach the point of going outside just to scream or to tear their own hair out in chunks.) Its also been a time for me to learn how to deal with it. Sometimes the only way I’ve been able to face it is to shout, to Time Out, to let that Bat Shit Crazy feeling have its turn. But other times its been a great opportunity to reflect on how to deal with the situation differently, thanks to some shiny new ideas from attachment parenting techniques, to find some compassion and redirection and solve the problems before they get to be a problem.

2012 is full of hope and optimism for me. I’m excited for some projects I’ve already been working on for a couple of weeks, and I’m looking forward to striving towards some new goals I have set out for myself. Because I don’t necessarily believe New Year’s Resolutions are effective or often even achievable, I’ve been working on forming these goals since the beginning of December, but am excited to work them more into my daily life with the freshness of the new year.

My biggest ‘umbrella’ goal I’ll be working on in 2012 is organization. Those who love me or know me well enough know I suck at planning and organizing. If you want me to put together a great menu for a special party, I’m your girl. If you want me to do something a normal adult might be capable of, such as scheduling my dog’s shots annually or knowing where I took off my shoes, or actually mailing the bills I just wrote checks for, you’ll need to look somewhere else. The amazing thing is I’ve gotten much better than I used to be. Before Jax was born, just getting out of the house was a struggle: I’d get out to the car before realizing I had no idea where my wallet was (I still lose my debit card a few times a year).

So this is the thing I’ve promised myself: no more chaotic moments of forgetting where I’ve put something, and no more ‘oh I meant to clean that’ or ‘that was due WHEN!?’ I’m fine as long as I have a system; my remotes never go missing as long as they are returned to the same place everytime. My shoes are always put away on a rack because that’s where I’ll look to find them. I’m the type of person that has to park in the same place whenever I go to the mall otherwise I won’t be able to find my car. And I’ve promised myself I’ll make those appointments, like bringing my dog to the vet on time. (Somewhere my sister in law, aka ‘our vet’, just did a happy dance of relief- finally she’ll make that appointment!, haha). I solved the bill issue (where I’d write the checks and forget to mail them), a long time ago by automating, but this year we’ll be taking a step further towards some bigger savings goals. I’m working on losing the baby weight consciously, with a system, instead of floundering unhappily day to day with the issue staying I’ll sign up for that doula course I’ve been wanting to take, and we’ll make some plans for our family, really mapping things out better for ourselves.

I plan on organizing everything to bring a sense of calm and order to our lives. Too many things in 2011 and before were full of ‘ups and downs’ and temporary fixes, so its wonderful to be feeling like we’re aiming towards a place of permanence and balance. And with that comes a time to purge the closets (moving and leaving the majority of your things two states away puts things into perspective for ‘needs’ vs ‘need to get rid of’). Overall, I’m hopeful and excited to see what 2012 will bring for me and my family.

What about your goals and hopes for the new year and beyond?