2009: Onward and Upward

I’ve spent a lot of time over the past week trying to compose the perfect blog post to ring in the new year, with little success. I’m having a hard time striking the right tone.

2009 was, for me, a year defined by loss: we started with a few miscarriages under our belt. Then March brought the ectopic pregnancy. The year has come to a close with the possibility that we may not have children of our own. It’s not something I ever considered when we were planning “our future,” and it has devastated me.

It’s been a year of realizations. I spent most of 2009 reeling, readjusting, and then coming to grips with the fact that whole chunks of my life were “changed, changed utterly.” My future looks so different from what it looked like a year ago. I’ve been carrying around the version of life that includes staying at home with a brood of kids, dealing with teenage angst, and delighting in grandchildren for almost a decade, now. To suddenly be confronted with the stark reality of life as a childless couple, a career couple, as the most likely outcome frightens the piss out of me.

It was a tough year.

In contemplating this year, though, I know a few things for sure. First (biggest) is that I am absolutely blessed beyond measure to have my husband in my life. He is an amazing, wonderful man. Years have passed, and he is still on my mind as I fall asleep, and my first thought when I wake up. The support, encouragement, entertainment, and steadiness from my husband have kept me going more times that I could measure.

Another thing I know is that I will survive this. In a few years, I will look back on 2009 and honestly be able to say “that which did not kill me made me stronger.” Getting through the grief, dealing with the changes, and moving forward — I can do these things and I will. And I will be the better for accomplishing that trifecta.

“Used to think the changes
would only bring me sorrow.
But, the sorrow that I feel today
Will be my joy tomorrow.”

I’ve begun 2010 in ways I never would have expected a year ago: My husband is at a thrilling point in his career, and can only skyrocket from here. My ability to move, to manage, to support (a one-woman show!) has been instrumental in his achievements. I am so insanely proud of him; and I get to look at what he has accomplished and say “I helped!”

My own job is one I would neither have expected nor pursued if 2009 hadn’t gone the way it did. And I love what I do. I like finding a way for people to make a connection between known and unknown. And I like that I get to do it with what I love, literature. For the first time in my entire life I have a job I could work at happily for decades. That’s ridiculously exciting.

Back in college days, I happily swapped the dream of a graduate degree with that of raising kids. Although the renewal of my educational goals in 2010 is bittersweet, it is daily becoming more sweet than bitter. I love learning new things; I’m excited to go back to school. This is a dream I am delighted to revive.

Someday we’ll start talking about other ways to start a family. We haven’t given up on that hope. And, despite my firm belief that the obstacles presented in 2009 are insurmountable, Hubs has continued to gently disagree with me until I’ve started to realize he may have a point (patience of a saint, that one). Brangelina, look out!

Basically, the change in landscape and life-direction that the past year heralded, and my attempt to recover from it, will continue to shift from loss to gain. New opportunities have begun to crop up, new adventures are possible. Positives things have resulted from this year, and will continue to, as long as I (and we) keep the wheels turning.

“You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward.” -Rocky Balboa

2009 was a challenging year, all year. But, as Hubs says, “you made it; It’s done.” I’m no longer surviving, I survived. I have a new year, and a new decade to look forward to. This isn’t the first time in my life difficulty has morphed into possibility. My world is bigger, better, because of this year. And no matter where I am in ten years, whether I’m surrounded by suited colleagues or poopy diapers, I know I will look back at 2009 and think, “I’m the better for it.”

And my husband is decades worth of awesome.

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7 thoughts on “2009: Onward and Upward”

  1. 2010 started the same way 2009 ended for me, pretty f-ing shitty. But I just tell myself January didn't count, it seems to be working. “keep moving forward” right?

  2. Dealing with grief and yet looking forward and appreciating the good things – that's a tough challenge, in “life” as well as in writing about it. You're doing well, my friend!!!

  3. Our daughter, adopted at birth, is the joy of our life. While going through the adoption process, a social worker told us: “The child that is meant for you will come to you.” Sixteen years later, I think of those words and know she was right. Love has no bloodlines. Don't give up your dream.

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