For the first time in many years I had someone to kiss at midnight, when New Year’s Eve turned into New Year’s Day. Greg and I were kid-free at a party hosted by one of his friends. As twelve o’clock neared, all the party-goers’ gloved hands held glasses with various drinkables, our faces red from the curious mix of cold and heat only a Northern outdoor fire in December can bring. With no TV to count down for us we relied on the phone of a teenager, as she was the only one who could quickly figure out how to access a clock app with seconds displayed. The rest of us older folks were busy with our toasting alcohol, you see.
“… four, three, two, ONE! Happy new year!” we shouted. Greg turned to me and we kissed and I wanted to hold the moment of the two of us feeling so grateful that 2014 brought us together, but then because I’m almost 40 and not 20 my next thought was, “All right, party’s over, I’m tired, let’s go home!”
Last night I almost hit publish on a recap of all the things I didn’t accomplish last year, having just read my list of what I hoped to accomplish in 2014. Yes, I got a job, but I didn’t lose weight (uh, I added about 10 pounds) and I didn’t dance more (my dancing partner Hildy pretty much broke up with me – I didn’t even know friends did that at my age!) and I read the fewest books in a year since I was two years old.
But despite my love of sarcasm and dry humor I am, at my core, an optimist, and couldn’t leave written what looked mostly negative on the outside.
I gained weight this year because my life is so full of time with happy people and experiences that my opportunities for exercise have shrunk. I do need to figure out how to eke out more time to get and stay fitter, but I am grateful for the desk job I had handed to me last February that offers much more stability than waiting tables and my part time business, even if it means my expanding behind is stuck to a chair five days a week. I’m overjoyed at Greg’s presence in my life, even though I know part of my gain is due to spending time with him instead of with the treadmill, and our joint adoration of all things food-related. How can I complain about all the fantastic meals I’ve shared with him since we met last April? (Ask me this question later this year when I’m faced with my 20 year high school reunion, though.)
Losing Hildy as a friend stung, mostly because the ease with which she stopped communicating with me made me feel like perhaps we weren’t as close of friends as I’d thought we were. But realizing a friend was of the fair-weather variety made me value the long-lasting and stable friendships I’ve had for 1, 5, 10, 20, 30 years.
I didn’t read much, which I do feel a tinge of regret over, but I also watched much less TV. While I do hope to get back in the reading habit in 2015 since I’ll be cutting way way way way back on my side business, I can’t feel badly that so many of my hours were spent experiencing MY life. My children, my friends, my job, my home, my boyfriend. Oh, and lots and lots of amazing food. See above about the weight gain.
One wish for 2015 is that it brings me clarity on the direction to take my (currently non-existent) career. Because, seriously, I need to make more money. Less practically, I want to feel like I’m at a job challenging enough for my skills.
I hope Greg and I keep the feeling of ease and comfort in our relationship even as we face the pressures of many (MANY!) kids and the tirades and whims of his ex, a woman who seems hell-bent on alienating me from Greg and their children. I could start an entirely new blog filled with just her texts and rants and call it, “My Boyfriend’s Ex is Worse than Your Boyfriend’s Ex.” Look for it. I’m glad my ex and I are much more amicable – I know that’s making things easier for our kids. I hope my kids can see how Greg and I act toward each other and learn about what a GOOD relationship looks like.
I want to watch my children continue to thrive. Despite their parents divorcing and having to change school districts they are not only doing well at school, they are, well, pretty much awesome. They’ve embraced the new school, they’re getting good grades and doing advanced work. The divorce was awful, but I am comforted when I see how much better they are doing now that they’re not living with parents who had so much stress in their lives.
And, okay, yeah, I want to lose weight.
Image by crly2 used under creative commons license.