Hi! Howya doin? So the year is all-but-over and I felt it necessary to pull myself away from New Years Party prep and take time to salute the year that was.
I have mixed feelings about the year, which has been a mixture of the good, the bad and the ugly. Part of me wants to say, "good riddance" and "may next year be better"; part of me feels slightly nostalgic and wants to cling onto the known. The first year with all of my kids at primary school; the last year with all of my kids at primary school. A big part of me is nervous for what the new year will bring.
I don't have A Word for it. Summing up my hopes into just one little Word is most likely beyond my editing skills. But if I could summarise my hopes for the year in such a fashion, it would be this hopeful word: BETTER. I just hope this year will be Better. That I will do Better. That Life will be Better. That the as-yet unsullied, unwritten-upon days to come will be filled with more laughter, more kind words, more gratitude, more love, more peace. Which will make for a year that is Better all round.
With less than 24 hours to go until the new year is upon us, here's my summary of The Year That Was...
In January we went camping, I stupidly went cold turkey off my meds and I built a lemonade stand. I love my lemonade stand; it's come in so handy this year.
In February I faced my fears and went to Miss Fabs' Marae Camp (it was liberating). More fears were faced when I panicked in the crowds at the Weetbix Kids tryathlon. Apart from that Feb was pretty uneventful.
In March I shared my journey with you, the Long and Winding road I've taken through the forests of depression and anxiety. I also broke out of my comfort zone and SEWED (with the help of a friend). My baby enrolled at school and I began the process of leaving the preschool parenting years behind forever *sniff*
April was very eventful, with two massive milestone birthdays in the family: Mr G turned 40 (and we threw him a fabulous fortieth) while Scrag turned five (and we threw him an epic carnival Party). I also travelled to Christchurch for the first time ever, and attended NZ's inaugural Bloggy Conference. April was huge.
In May we caught our breath, it was Mothers Day (with all the mixed emotions that brings) ; Scrag started school, ran his first Cross Country (and learned a big lesson about Falling); I also shared with you the story of when Hubby Played Hairdresser. Read it and giggle, seriously.
June was the month of The Grateful Project. I planned to blog every day focusing on gratitude. It was quite an amazing experience. I learnt that there is always, always something to be grateful for. And that gratitude is a powerful thing and my best weapon against depression and anxiety.
In July I went to Hawaii (as you you do) and threw Miss Fab a fab winter Ice Skating Party. I also discovered that SURPRISE! I'm dyslexic. Never would have guessed it. You might say that July was pretty eventful.
In August I began to get my head around my dyslexia and I shared with you the story of how that has impacted me. Before Mr G headed to England for a month (leaving me to sole-parent) we enjoyed our BEST EVER family theme night: a Cowboy Cookout with Truth or Dare. It was truly wonderful.
In September I got sick. Really sick. I ended up in hospital with suspected Guillain Barre syndrome. Our family was truly blessed by the love and support that poured out for us. It was amazing. The whole thing turned around so quickly that the doctors couldn't believe it. I know lots of people were praying. I was (and am) truly grateful.
In October after recovering from my illness, we headed to Taupo for a family holiday and revisited Turoa - the ski mountain where Mr G first imagined our two lads and a little girl. I worked hard on my Christmas book and self-published an updated second edition - a mammoth achievement. We also had a fabulous Family Horseriding Adventure.
In November Dash turned 11 and we celebrated with a fantastic Army Combat Party. The rest of the month was pretty much all about flogging my Christmas Book, although I did turn 44 myself and have some deep thoughts and revelations about Parenting.
By December I was done in. Exhausted from the year that was and needing to go back on meds, I've kept a pretty low blogging profile and only posted a couple of times. Most notable was my Guide to an Unstressy Christmas... advice which I followed myself as best I could.
Christmas was largely unstressy, even largely enjoyable despite the fact that I was feeling completely unChristmassy. Now it's all behind us, the presents have been opened, the gingerbread house munch upon, the trifle devoured... a new year is lurking around the corner.
Right now it's time for me to go and take down the almost-dead Christmas Tree, pack away the ornaments and set up for our New Years Eve Party.
I hope you have a good one, wherever you are, and that 2014 will be for you, in every way, BETTER... Happy almost-New Year to you and yours.
Much love from