Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: A Year In Review

It is December 31st, 2012. Looking back, as we tend to do during this time, I realize it has been quite the year. I'd say this has been one of my better years, but like any cycle of 365 days, it had its ups and downs.

I lost 30+ lbs though the dedicated fervor of kickboxing once or twice a week in South Philly. Sadly, this was the 30 lbs I lost during my stint with fat class which I lost, gained back and ultimately lost. Point is, I'm healthier and much more into fitness than I used to be. I started running at Temple's indoor track. I started running outside, to the art museum steps and along the river. I'm going to call about a new kickboxing/martial arts studio in my work neighborhood to see their rates and if they're too high I'm taking up dance fitness for a month.

I lost a gallbladder and experienced my very first serious surgery in my life. I got to spend 5 days in a hospital and get rid of an organ that had caused me a lot of pain in 2011 into 2012. I've been healthier and happier ever since and my employee discount/insurance made the financial aspect of my stay and surgery a miracle.

I somehow made it through the worst semester in my entire academic life. I had a horrendously tough J School class that made me cry as I went home each night due to the pressure and the assignments and the expectations. While this class destroyed my 4.0 GPA by 8 tenths of a point, I look back and realize that an A- isn't that bad considering I missed 3 weeks due to surgery/recovery and half the time I had no idea what I was doing. I think that class made me a stronger person but it came dangerously close to breaking me.

I lost a good friend, someone who I considered one of my best friends. I think both of us may have changed from when we were last together and that change was too hard to bear. I'm still struggling with it because I miss my friend, but much like the ebb and flow of the tide, friends ebb and flow in and out of your life. I'm always going to want to fix what is broken but I know it is probably beyond repair.

I may have lost one of my best friends, but I also gained a new friend. While covering an assignment for a school project, I met a fantastic young woman who shares similar interests as I and we have had a blast hanging out. The trick to maintaining this friendship will be managing our crazy schedules but as I have not hung out with her since before Thanksgiving, I still feel like it was yesterday and our friendship is great and will grow in 2013.

I almost had to move out of my apartment and had a nervous breakdown because of it. I was so upset that I accidentally dropped an egg out of my fridge which somehow led to all my eggs falling out of the fridge and cracking on my floor. That led to me sobbing uncontrollably on my kitchen floor. Alas, I learned the power of negotiation after a rent raise and won the negotiation. I'm terrified to negotiate and tend to take what is given to me but this experience taught me what wonderful benefits you will receive if you try. I may move sometime in the summer to a bigger place, but for now I can stay snug in my little apartment on top of a pizza shop in Center City.

I went though a very difficult period of time when I was depressed for months and couldn't figure out why. I suspected it was due to work stuff, but I wasn't sure. I was a sad, angry, pathetic excuse for a worker. I got called out for it and told to seek help and that in and of itself was a wake up call. I became very close with a few select co-workers to the point I'd consider them as family. I started journaling again which proved to be helpful and I worked things out a bit on my own. I realized that my attitude wasn't a solo in a bubble thing and that many of my co-workers were going though similar ruts. The dynamic of our work community has changed and not for the better and I'm not the only person that realizes that. This isn't the same place it was 1 or 2 years ago and I hope changes will be made to build it back up to the powerhouse of a community it used to be.

I had always dreamed of falling in love around the Holidays. I think I've wanted a holiday romance for years and years. After months and months of online dating, awkward dates, year long crushes on guys who didn't care if I lived or died, single desperation, I finally fell into what I had been looking for. I randomly reconnected with an old high school friend in a very platonic situation and somehow at the same time we were shot by Cupid and realized there was more there. We had both given up on "love" and were focused on our own lives but bumped into each other in the process. Much to my surprise I will be entering 2013 with my heart belonging to someone else and their heart belonging to me. It is an exciting feeling.

In 2012, I got to go to a college friend's amazing wedding which turned into a pretty sweet reunion. I rented a car for the first time. I flew for the first time since Nicaragua to visit a friend in North Carolina. I spent my birthday with my close friends and even got my name on the Phillies Jumbotron. I met Cliff Lee, a Phillies pitcher and through my job that I complain about sometimes, scored baseline seats TWICE for free. I found my "Cheers" bar and visit there often. (They have great wings). I had a successful fall semester in J School and some unique opportunities in that field have been flying by my way. I lost a dear Sister of the Holy Redeemer friend who is in a much better peaceful place now.

It has been an up and down year. My new friend says she likes to enter the new year being "the best version of herself." I tend to be the best version of a drunken mess each New Years Eve, so I decided to try something different. Tonight I will be participating in a New Years Eve Bikram Yoga class and vegetarian potluck/non-alcoholic toast. Naturally, I'll have a travel mug of champagne ready for the walk home, but I'm going to ring in 2013 in downward dog, sweaty and healthy. I can't say the same for New Years Day because that is bound to be full of day drinking and Mummers, but hey...its that transition to midnight that counts.

My resolution for 2013 is to take more risks. This may seem crazy or stupid but I don't mean life-threatening risks. I play it safe all too often. I'm too scared to make major life changes. I'm too scared to fall in love. I'm too scared to fulfill my dream and do a stand-up comedy open mic night. I want to try new things this year. I want to travel as best I can on my limited mobility/time/budget. I want to take risks that will make 2013 one of the best years of my life.

Until next year...

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