It is already next year in Samoa, Tonga, Kiribati, Australia, Japan, Singapore, and China (who has one time zone, and the entire country goes by what time it is in Beijing), so Happy New Year to those people. If this takes very long to write, it could well be 2018 for my friends in Europe when I finally finish. I hope I get done before then. I have a LOT to cover, and I’m still sorting my feelings about the year that – for me – everything changed in very big ways. Scratch that. From what I’m reading in mu social feeds, 2017 was way huge for so many of you. First, CONGRATS to the winner of the day planner. Now, let’s dig in.
In January, I met my #SocialRoadTrip friends in Austin for Barbecue, Brews, and a charitable event that ended up not happening because it was FREAKING COLD AND SLEETING. So we ate donuts (SO MANY DONUTS), wandered around town, had brunches, bar hopped, and had barbecue (Coopers was delicious). We laughed, and hugged, and became new friends. I slept on a pull-out couch that was the most-comfy I had ever been on, and I’m a connoisseur. The worst thing was that I had flown in from Denver, and during the trip, it was warmer where I had been than where I was. Well played, Texas. Hey Joel, where are our “I Survived Austin” Social Road Trip shirts *wink*? All the rest of you, hop in and join us for a chat sometime. We’d love to see you on one of the trips!
February was just a flurry of school. I took classes that strengthened my writing, editing, and publishing skills. I made some really great friends in my author-peers, and learned to take criticism of my work less personally. There’s a certain amount of liberation in finally understanding that someone didn’t like my word choice, but that has nothing to do with whether they like me or not. AND there’s a life lesson in that which I will teach in the coming weeks.
There’s another lesson in knowing vs. doing here, too, but I’m hoping it’s more obvious.
In March, via my journal, I start to see my self spiral into frustration, as I read White Hot Truth and realized I had become a self-help junkie. I mean bad. I had convinced that other people didn’t include me because I was immensely unlikeable and unworthy. I cried myself to sleep, driving down the road, or any time my thoughts had a minute to focus on me. Over and over, I see the words stuck, frustrated, not good enough, and others that make it clear that I was perpetually pissed at myself for not being a better human, not being on my yoga mat, thinking too much… I beat myself to hell, barely enjoying my 41st birthday, filled with my favorite ladies. I fixed it by buying another self-help book. Then another. Seriously, it was out of control. One day I ‘ll have a best friend again. Until then, I have you.
In May I had packed all of my possessions, put them in storage, and headed to Prague to visit St. Facetious and his amazing wife. As luck would have it, he was in the States during my visit. I got to get to know his wife, though, and cook her delicious foods. She in turn, took me to all of the best places in Prague. Two of her friends came in from Germany, and we hiked up to the vineyard on the hill, and then over to Prague Castle to see the faire and eat the best food. I bought some sexy brogues and even got to attend a diplomat’s dinner celebrating Georgian independence. It was a riot. I miss Europe. I will be back, so look out!
I arrived in Florida on August 12. Two weeks later, a friend came to visit, and I got to do my first real exploring with a pal from my 2nd home, Phoenix. We hit the Keys and spent 20 hours on a sailboat, snorkeling and sleeping. Then we headed for South Beach, and we swam in the Atlantic.
In September, Hurricane Irma hit. I am told I am an official Floridian because I survived my first hurricane. I’m not very okay with hurricanes, and my heart is split between Colorado and Arizona, and those feel like home so deep in my bones. With any luck, I’ll be heading back there soon.
In the beginning of November, I had an anxiety attack so bad that it put me into AFib, and it took me 4 days to get to the hospital after it started. Don’t do that, by the way. It’s not okay if your ticker is going more than 150 (and probably less) for long periods of time. Unless you’re this lady. Even if you have no other symptoms, get it checked.
At the end of November, I spent Friendsgiving in Orlando, swimming with dolphins, eating stone crab, and hanging out with some amazing framily.
I noticed that I have spent a lot of time being stressed out and hard on myself. This year, I over-worked and stomped on myself so hard, many of my dreams just got up and walked away. My heart broke over how mean we’ve all become to one another. I had a major cardiac issue. Now I live with anxiety, hopefully only for a short time. I mourned those I lost, and those my friends lost. And yet, I am so grateful, and that’s not blowing smoke or filler fluff.
Here are a few of my favorite things from the year (in no particular order):
- I found SUPERWOMAN Lilly Singh
- I started reading Martin’s Musings and The Context of Things
- Prince Harry is finally engaged. In related news, there’s still no explanation for my obsession with the British Monarchy.
- Alien: Covenant. I watched in a thousand-year-old building in Prague.
- Despicable Me 3
- Creating recipes
- Austin Social Road Trip
- Having my recipes published on CBS Local
- Dipping my toes in the Atlantic
- Loving the Alien (Bowie tribute band)
- Snorkeling on Sand Key
- Sleeping on a Sail Boat
- Tracksuit Wedding‘s new album
- Paint & Sip for my 41st Birthday
- Setting up the drum kit for Loving the Alien and Lights
- Loving the Alien playing Elway’s in the driving rain
- Playing with Hunter S. Dogson and Dixie Jane
- Every damn thing Stu Miller gets his hands on
- Laughing with my monkey nephew
- Working at the liquor store as the gift basket designer
- Meeting one of the best congenital cardiac teams in the country
- Finishing the work for my TESOL certificate
- Living next to the Atlantic Ocean, which is much warmer and less rocky than the opposite coast
- The best mole I’ve ever had was in a Mexican restaurant in Prague
- Beauty & The Beast
- My #SassyPants ladies’ group
- My Spork Life Bloggers Group (join in, if you want)
- Finally publishing my Kitchen book on Amazon
- And the football book
- and this video:
In 2018, my resolutions are to stop being so fucking hard on myself, and to open my eyes to what’s going on. It really makes a difference when I’m present.
What was great about your year?