Tuesday, April 12, 2016

On the eve of 46

Sometimes the start of my year -- and the reflections that come with it -- is New Years Eve, sometimes (as it is this year), it's the eve of my birthday. Tomorrow I turn 46. Closer to 50 than 40.

Last year, at the start of the new year, I did a similar exercise. Looking back, it felt appropriate to do it again now.

Accomplishments of 2015

1. Professionally, I rebranded 99% of my institution with a new name, new logo, new messaging, new look...all items on my check list completed within one year of the logo reveal.
2. In direct response to the the above hard work, I gained 20 pounds. Is that an accomplishment? I consider it akin to pregnant weight and I was grateful for every ounce of work that each pound represented.
3. Losing the 20 pounds within four months of the logo reveal and regaining (for the most part) healthy eating and exercise habits.
4. I continued to work on my mental health and face, head-on, the issues that have shaped me as an adult, and as a result my relationship with men.
5. While some friends have drifted away, I'm proud that I've managed to maintain the friendships and relationships that mean the most to me, regardless of the distance.
6. Growing my circle of friends in PA has been a huge game changer. While still not the "people" I had in Ithaca, I definitely feel like I have "people" here, outside of work.

Disappointments of 2015

1. Regardless of how proud I am that I did lose the weight and am more or less within five pounds of my August 2013 weight, I feel very stuck at this weight. When I get lower, it's a struggle. I need to learn -- and accept -- that my body is where it's supposed to be. And that's ok.
2. Not running enough, and then when I started up again, having an ankle injury that prevented me from running for more than three months. I missed the Travis Manion Foundation run in September and the Rocky Run in November. I see my times on TimeHop from three years ago and realize that I still have a long way to go to get back to where I once was.
3. As it was for last year, it is again for this year -- not blogging enough. Once I write something down, it's out of my head and the thoughts are quieted. I need to remember this as I'm playing a story or scenario or problem over and over in my head.

Three things I focused a majority of my energy on

1. My job
2. My dog
3. My health

Three things I intended to do but didn't

1. Accept my "happy" weight
2. Run a 5K
3. Take a sewing class
4. Take a real vacation

My game changers in 2015 -- unexpected outcomes that made things different for you

1. I continue to learn the needs and demands (and the rewards) of owning a challenging breed of dog; we have figured out a very comfortable routine and continue to make great strides in which one of us is the alpha (it changes daily).
2. Embracing my singleness. It doesn't mean that I've given up on finding someone, but I'm finally OK with just me.
3. I love having the FWB in my life but, after 13 years, the power has shifted and I'm now more important to him than he is to me. It doesn't mean that I don't care about him, but if things were to end, I know I would be okay without him.
4. One of my goals for 2015 was to open my Etsy shop and sew more. I realized that I don't like sewing for money. I much prefer sewing for people in my life. I certainly still sell some things, but making things en masse just isn't my thing. I have a stash of crayon rolls and table runners and other assorted things for our twice-yearly "Shopping Days" in the neighborhood (mini craft show) -- and that's enough. Taking the stress away from creating a shop and keeping the inventory up has made the sewing machine a stress reliever.

How do these reflections inform my intentions for 2016?

I can do anything I set my mind do and failure is never an option. The outcome might not be exactly according to plan, but I've learned to accept the unexpected outcome and see that ultimately it might be better that way.

What are my three words for 2016?
  • BETTER -- This will always be a life lesson for me. I don't have to be perfect, I just have to be better. In the words of John Steinbeck (East of Eden): "And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good."
  • ACCEPTANCE -- I've learned, and continue to learn, that accepting the outcome I didn't expect, is ok. I didn't fail, I just rewrote the ending.
  • STRENGTH -- Mentally, physically, emotionally, socially

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