There were and are plenty of things I could write about, but the first thing that came to my very very tired mind tonight as I bullied myself into writing the sort of post I usually glaze over, was that my hair is longer than it was this time last year. Quite a bit actually. Sometimes, in the tedium of growing my hair and trying to keep it looking healthy, it has felt as if it's not growing at all. That I'm spending all this time pursuing something that's just not possible, and as far as poorly drawn metaphors go, that about sums up good portions of this year.
But whining is not attractive at the best of times, and even at the worst of times it's not really one of my defining characteristics, because no one ever achieved much whining, and I've always been an overachiever.
So here's a few things I actually achieved this year:
I started drawing again. I've talked about it and half heartedly tried to pretend I was making an effort, when in reality I wasn't doing much of anything. But this year I really did, and I was even brave enough to give some of it away to a friend who deserved something much more impressive, but who was properly appreciative of the effort and thus I love her to bits.
I started a training program for a Royal Australian and New Zealand medical college and got excellent reviews. I got referees to say wonderful things about me and make me cry (in the good way). And if I didn't pass my exam first go, that's ok, I can do it again.
I moved into my first house all on my own and not only survived, but enjoyed myself. I went to the beach after work and sat on the sand. I stopped and bought icecream just because I could. I stayed up to late and read crappy books to cure the insomnia. I got up too early and did yoga on my purple mat.
I came home to my beautiful family and never want to leave again. Though it would be nice to still be able to pop down to the beach after work, or to the top of the mountain. I'd still rather come home to a noisy house full of squabbles and laughter and hugs and tiny sunburned hands that grip my fingers and steal my pillow in the middle of the night. I sleep better here.
But in general , 2012 was far harder than I anticipated, and in ways I hadn't expected. It hasn't been so much about enjoying as surviving and it's not my favourite way to live. 2011 finished on such a high - home from Paris, a major life long dream fulfilled, succeeding at work, succeeding at home, loving my beautiful children and with dreams this year of saving for our first home together. And I think that has what has been hardest this year, not the long hours, though they have been longer than almost any other time I have worked, or the stress of Bingley's prolonged unemployment, or the financial difficulties, or my weight gain that has been enough that my beautiful clothes that I wore to Paris pinch and no longer drape as they're supposed to. No, what has been hardest of all is that it has seemed pointless to dream, for fear of disappointment, and with no tangible goals to work for, I have floundered.
So for 2013, my goals are these - to have goals again. To work for them, even if they are smaller than the dreams of a year ago, when circumstances were different. To feel beautiful again, and dress accordingly. To learn how to curl my hair in curls that last longer than the time it took to put them in. To pass my exam. To go on a holiday, booked and planned in advance, even if it's not as glamorous as Paris, and sit in the heat with Bingley with limp hair and drink mojitos in the sunset.
Sometimes, I forget I'm 31, and I want someone to swoop in and save me. To make me feel clever and fun and beautiful and to make it all easier for me. To not worry about money or learning or holding the steel that is pressed against a person's heart and controlling their fate. To wake up and worry only about doing my hair and making breakfast for the family and planning dinner and listening to homework. To still feel like there is magic and joy in the world.
But it's not my job or my study that takes that away, and no Disney Prince could ever give it to me either. And there are moments of magic still, when I make someone laugh, while taking away the fear of the procedure I'm doing. Of being thanked by the big burly security guard when I've given him the joint injection that means his arms work like they're supposed to. Or the little old lady who tears up when I am the first person to explain what it is that she's doing in hospital and why I'm doing what I'm doing. Who holds my hand with frail paper skin that buckles under my blade and bruises at a whisper.
Little old ladies always comment on my hair too. My beautiful long hair. I guess that's another thing I achieved: I have my old hair back.
|Sun setting on 2012|
PS I want to write about Christmas
PPS I want to write more this year. And not just because Liss told me to.