My family and I had a very good year in 2008. We are very fortunate. Some things went well because Skip and I have worked hard and others because we are very, very lucky.
I'm not one to make New Year's resolutions other than to try and improve things in my life, rather, I prefer to reflect on the things for which I am grateful.
More than anything, I am grateful for the life I have. At the risk of jinxing myself:
I am grateful for my good health and have pledged to do everything I can to maintain it. I quit a 20 year smoking habit in 1991 and am now finally being successful in the attempt at losing the 30 pounds I gained since food started tasting so darned good.
I am grateful for my family, both by birth and acquired by my marriage to Skip. My sister and I are closer now than we have ever been, largely due to the contact we have on almost a daily basis through the Internet. Her family is a delight and nice people to be related to. Scooter is a joy, even as a typical 15 year-old, and I hope I have been a positive factor in his life. Skip is the husband I always dreamed of having. I wish it hadn't taken me so darned long to find him but I guess we're both the people we are because of the journeys that lead us to each other.
I am grateful for my friends, both long-time and those more recently introduced to my life. My long-time (notice I do not say 'old') are my anchors in this life. They have seen me through many, many epochs in my life: deaths of family members, demises of relationships, job changes, address changes, etc. My new friends have helped me make a smooth transition from the world of work to the world of leisure that is my retirement.
I am grateful for the time I now have to pursue the things that fill my life with joy and meaning. I lived my life kind of backwards dedicating the first years of my career solely to my career, sacrificing a satisfying personal life, and the last years when I finally married, I got to enjoy being involved in the raising of a child. I enjoyed the challenges my teaching career posed for me but now I am completely done with it. I do not miss the work or the students AT ALL. I do keep in touch with many of my former colleagues but my days are now filled with things that I want to do. For the most part, "if it's not fun, why do it?"is my credo.
I am grateful that I lived through the time when women were able to pursue equality with men and more people were finally being created more equally. It has been an exciting time and it contributed a lot to the kind of adult woman I became.
I am grateful that although both my parents had died by the time I was 13, that my step-mother adored me as much as I did her and without question continued to raise me, legally adopting me when I was 15. I was the beneficiary of the influence of all my parents and sure wish I could sit down with each one of them and my brother (who died at age 26 when I was 19) and thank them for the sacrifices they made for me and the faith they had in me.
There are lots of experiences and material ' things' I am grateful for but they pale in comparison to the above-mentioned points. I'll outline them another time.
I guess one thing I will try to do in 2009 (if you want to call it a resolution, fine) is to continue to have a positive outlook on life. So much of how things turn out depend on how one choses to play the 'hand' they are dealt.
Life is good.
Here's to a great 2009.