There were definitely bright spots in 2012. It was sometimes hard to see them when the darkness loomed so large. The best moments definitely came in watching Kaelen grow and become his own little person. New teeth, new skills, outgrown clothes, developing personality - all amazing to see. He signed "eat" for the first time independently on 12/29, then signed it with gusto upon seeing cupcakes at our friends' house on New Year's Eve. Seeing Gene fall in love with our son and be a patient but strict parent has been wonderful. Introducing Kaelen to my grandparents and family in New England last spring gave me untold joy. Watching my brother grow into his role as uncle - gentle, loving, attentive, sometimes even awestruck - has been so touching. Marius came into our lives and we've been learning the ups and downs of parenting a teen. And hey, we survived the purported "Mayan Apocalypse"!
Gene and I both have high hopes for 2013. Here are some of my personal goals:
- I will manage my commitments better. I've said "yes" to too many things. For example, I'm thrilled to have hosted Marius and our lives have been enriched by having known him. I've realized that parenting someone else's teenager stretches my time and attention too thin (also, I don't have the patience or energy to debate, discuss, and defend my every statement). We've been asked to do it again and I declined. On the other hand, I've just agreed to join the planning committee to help start a barter community in Tacoma and I've also rejoined a French conversation group.
- I will make time for myself amongst all those obligations. As I often tell others, "You can't fill others' cups if your own is empty".
- I will refocus my blog. I started my blog out with great gusto. Must write all the things! My life has changed dramatically in the years since my first post. It's a lot of work to maintain a blog, and I'm thankful to you for reading it. I do this one for fun but sometimes it just feels like a burden and I get guilty for neglecting it. My initial goal was to write about the trials and tribulations of living sustainably in a city. I want to maintain and develop that general theme. I am going to spend some time thinking about what I want this blog to be and would greatly appreciate your input on it.