Time for the second edition of The Friday 5, and the last one for 2012! This one’s going to be an emotional one for me, I think. Don’t forget to head over and link up with Friday 5, and leave a comment here and I’ll head over the check out your Friday 5!
1. Who stands out among people you met in 2012?
This is a tough one! First of all I’m not exactly a social butterfly anymore, so I don’t meet a whole lot of people. I guess I would say my boyfriend’s family, although I had met his brother before and I felt like I already knew them.
2. What new interest did you discover in 2012?
Ach, again, I’m seriously boring. I have used my stand mixer more in the last year than I ever have before, so we’re going to go with baking. I really need to start sky diving or alligator wrestling, or something.
3. In what ways was 2012 better than 2011?
The more appropriate question is how 2012 wasn’t better than 2011. 2011 may go down as the worst year of my life, but at the same time, it was the start of new beginnings for me.
In September 2011, my grandfather passed away. He was my person. My rock. My home when I had none. He was the only person that I could ever count on to be there for me when I needed him. 100%, every single time. Without getting all talk about my childhood on you, he raised me, and I pretty much feel like all of the good qualities that I have came from him. He was the only person whose opinion I ever really cared about. I never wanted to disappoint him.
Looking back, it may be that he was the reason that I had stayed in my marriage as long as I had. I didn’t want him to think I had failed. To admit to him, and maybe to myself, that I had let myself be treated in a way I shouldn’t have been for so very long. Maybe it was just a coincidence, but by the end of November 2011 my marriage of seven years was over.
In 2012, I’ve been learning to be me again. Who I am. Who I want to be. Reflections on which part of my marriage failing were my fault and trying to come up with an honest assessment of the mistakes that I made have been a huge part of 2012. It hasn’t been easy, but it is so much better than feeling like less of a person, as I did for much of 2011. 2012, for me, has been largely been about re-establishing how I feel about myself. After several years of having my self-esteem and self-worth hurt on a near daily basis, it’s been about re-developing my self-confidence. As we approach the end of 2012, I think I’m doing a pretty good job. There are still so many baby steps to take to get where I want to be – where the voice that I hear in my head when I look in the mirror says only nice things. 2012 has also been about taking care of all the practical things in my life that I wasn’t able to in my marriage. I am proud to say I am well on the way to being financially stable again – which has taken a year of hard work and recovery. So needless to say, 2012 has been a HUGE year for personal change and growth, and I’m pretty proud of how far I’ve come in a year.
I fell in love in 2012. It wasn’t expected. Admittedly, the timing wasn’t great. A long distance relationship while still recovering emotionally and financially from a divorce tested each and every single one of my insecurities. Several times. But with less than two weeks until the “long distance” drops off of my relationship with my boyfriend, I can say that it was worth it. I think I have found an honest, open, and loving relationship that is going to last. He makes me feel important, and he is so good to my girls. I think he recognizes, like I have come to, that a successful relationship isn’t about fairy tales, but instead work and commitment and putting your partner ahead of yourself. If it hadn’t been for 2011 (and the several years before that), I never would have been able to recognize what a great thing we have going.
So basically, while 2011 sucked, without it 2012 and all the growth and change would not have been possible. I can’t wait to see what 2013 brings!
4. What small, symbolic item might serve as a good souvenir for 2012?
My apartment key. It was one of the first things that I obtained on the road that I’ve been on this year. I feel so fortunate to be able to provide for my girls and give them a healthier and more loving environment than there were in before.
5. Many years from now, what song, when you hear it on the radio, will remind you most of 2012?
I was POSITIVE that I had given up on all notions of lasting love and marriage, and everything that goes with it, but turns out I was wrong. And I have a pretty awesome partner to thank for that.
The lyrics I could have written, but Taylor beat me to them:
I’ve been spending the last eight months
Thinking all love ever does is break and burn and end
But on a Wednesday in a cafe, I watched it begin again