Monday, January 02, 2012

Many a weary foot

I love New Year's celebrations. I love the feeling of starting fresh, of a clean slate (haha, get it?), of the almost religious idea of starting anew with no sins. But I also love the idea of a progression, of time and life moving forward and amassing new experiences every day.

As longtime friends and readers know, I reflect on the past year by being thankful for and celebrating "firsts". And 2011 had a lot of firsts for me!
  • Snowshoeing - I went several times and liked it so much that I bought myself snowshoes after Thanksgiving. Two trips already planned for January 2012.

  • Baking more than I have, ever - I think I baked more in 2011 than I have the rest of my life combined. In the process, I discovered that it's relaxing and that I'm quite good at it!

  • Visiting the Caribbean - Aside from the beautiful beaches and wonderful sailing weather in the British Virgin Islands and the amazing history of Puerto Rico, there were also many "firsts" for food from this trip: mofongo, plantain lasagna, conch ceviche, and Pusser's very excellent rum. Another "first" from the trip was the agonizing realization that I am either allergic (like Mi Hermana) to a sunscreen ingredient or (like La Otra Hermana) to the combination of sun and sweat.

  • Getting help for anxiety and depression - It took 14 years. What college counselors failed to observe and subsequent MSW therapists failed to point out, both a psychiatrist and a psychologist saw immediately. I'm grateful to everyone who was so supportive in 2011: from driving me to that first appointment, to recommending certain doctors, to calling to see if I was okay when first starting the medication regiment, to checking in every now and then since. It might take a long time to work through, but I think 2012 will build on a lot of the foundation laid in 2011.

  • Paddleboarding - This was the coolest accidental "first" ever - I thought I was going pedal-boating, which I've done before, and ended up trying something leisurely and fun.

  • Being pulled over by a police officer - In 16 years of driving, I'd never been pulled over!

  • Getting a traffic citation - In 16 years of speeding, I'd never gotten a ticket! Figures it'd happen in California...

  • Climbing a rock wall - Turns out, I liked it! It was definitely scary at points, but I managed to coach myself through the paralysis and finish.

  • Shopping on Black Friday ... on Thanksgiving - Mi Hermana and I have napped and gone shopping at 4am in the past, but this time we put the kiddos to bed, then drove to the outlet mall a little before midnight. When we got back to the house around 7am, we slept until 2pm. Living and learning... we might be too old for that now!

  • Running multiple 5Ks - I beat my own record of 2 per year. I ran 5 in 2011!

  • Driving a car onto the ferry - In 16 years of driving and 32 years of living in the Northwest, I've never 1) driven a car onto a ferry and 2) never done it alone. My God! The fare is exorbitant! But it was fun, since it was a first.
Here's to 2012, and all the new adventures it will bring!

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