I know IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m later than most with my 2008 reflections, but we were preparing to transplant our lives 2500 miles away when everyone else was posting their Ã¢â‚¬ËœEnd of 2008Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ posts, so I wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t ready. Now that things are a bit more settled, I wanted to get something down before life is once again swept into full steam and I forget to take a moment to reflect.
The last Sunday morning before we left Ohio, the speaker at my church started the sermon with a list of why 2008 as a nation and as a global village has been a year full of crazy high highs and low lows. Looking around it has seemed extreme, hasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t it? 2008, for me, was a year full of really difficult, heart-wrenching leaps of faith. The small, private kind that are hard to see from the outside looking in. There was a lot of saying goodbye and letting go to be done and IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m still not quite sure IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been successful, but I guess that kind of confirmation only comes with time.
Stepping into 2009 I feel like IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve fallen asleep and awakened in someone elseÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s house. Circumstances are less than comfortable and nothing is where I would put it if given the chance. In many ways I feel like I have to relearn how to have confidence all over again. However, despite the wind and the cold (well, usually itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s windy and cold where I am) I always find myself very hopeful and excited this time of year. The days start to slowly get longer, and I feel somehow the cosmic slate has been swept clean. I am determined to let that feeling overtake the overwhelming sense of being lost I felt on December 31st. So far, so good. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m making progress.
Although, I want to avoid sounding trite, I have to say IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been extremely grateful this year for the people that I love. Having known leaner, lonelier years, I know just how lucky I am to have relationships that arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t the pretty kindÃ¢â‚¬¦they arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t always comfortable and they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t always feel good. In my experience, it is pretty easy to find people who will be nice to you, call you every once in a while to schedule a lunch date, and then go on their way attending to their own life. It is a bit harder to find people who are brave enough to fight with you and explain to you just how full of shit you are when you deserve to be told you are full of shit. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t get me wrong, I also like it when they are nice to me, and they are very, very nice to me.
And then there is my husband who has the most beautiful spirit I have ever encountered in another human. I had my first conversation with him New Years Eve of 2004 so NYE 2008 marked four years of friendship for us. He is strong and kind, patient and understanding, loyal and painfully honest. This year we got to know each other so much better and I feel like my love and respect for him has grown exponentially. Who knew it would just keep getting better? I feel like I was single long enough to know that I could make it on my own just fine, but I think that just makes me all the more glad to have him around. There are moments when this year would have been a lot more painful if it werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t for him. He has my back whether I deserve it or not and I love him so much for that.
You are wonderful, baby. HereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s to starting our 5th year together (IN CALIFORNIA!!!) :)
Below IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve put together a slideshow of some of my favorite photos from the year. It was a lot of fun to look back through the 400 GB of photos I took this year and it was really hard to narrow them down to a five-minute slideshow. Even though Project: 365 turned into Project: 200-something, I am still glad that I gave it a shot and as a result I took a lot more photos of my life. I hope to do an even better job this year. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll seeÃ¢â‚¬¦