I always find it weird when recaps of the year are done still during the month of December. I mean, the year’s not over yet! But now, firmly in 2011 territory, it is a good time to say bye-bye to 2010 in a very quick retrospective.
It’s always hard to judge how good a year was. It seems that every year I get to December thinking “good riddance,” but the truth is that there’s always a mixture of good and bad to each 12-month period. The past year, 2010, was no exception.
It was a hard year for me for reasons that normally do not make it into this blog but rather into my personal journal. It was trying at times, extremely challenging in ways that I simply do not want to deal with again if I have the choice, and simply draining. It was the year that I had to accept that I needed psychological help to deal with a number of issues, least of them the lingering grief over the death of my mother in 2009, and that was the kind of journey that you look back at and feel great you did it but also realize it felt your feet and hands bloodied and raw as you clawed your way up the mountain. To run with the metaphor, I’ve only reached a plateau, and I’ve still more of the cliff-face to climb in 2011, but hey, the view’s great from where I am now.
2010 was also the year I returned to school to pursue my degree in Nursing. Three semesters later, I am now just a week away from starting my last semester of Pre-Nursing classes with an eye towards the Fall, when G-d willing, I’ll be accepted into and start the Nursing program at FIU. Going back to university after an 8-year lapse has been easy at times and incredibly hard at others, mostly depending on the class. I’ve been extremely thankful and blessed with finding out my brain still works as well as it did 10 years ago when I was doing my first degree, but I have also had to accept that at 36, I am not a kid and need some extra time to study in order to make sure I retain whatever I am going over. There’s an element of this simply not being a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants degree as English was to me, but yeah, I just need time to study, plain and simple. That said, my comprehension of the science material I have been covering this year has been very good, which makes me glad, and frankly, proud of myself.
This was also the year where I finally took control of my physical health as well. During 2009 I went up to 360 pounds, the heaviest I have been in my life. I started 2010 around the 355 mark, and lost a little here and there but simply by chance, not by design or desire. After a lifetime of people telling me to lose some weight, and half a year of my therapist suggesting it would do me good as well, in August, when the Fall semester started, I decided to finally do it, and started going to the gym and watching what I ate. Over the last four months of 2010 I lost a total of 34 lbs (a total of 48 lbs lost since January). I wanted to end 2010 at 300, but I’m good with where I am now (even with the 2 lbs I gained over the holiday break!). This is the best I have felt in years, and once classes start next week I’m back to my weekly gym routine, so more weight will surely come off.
I don’t make resolutions, usually, but this year I decided to write down a few in my journal. Among them, to continue losing weight, at least 30 lbs in 2011, though more will certainly be welcomed. I also want to continue getting better physically, mentally and spiritually, all of which are a daily struggle and worth the fight and the results I achieve along the way. I want to write more, and of course, get into the Nursing program at FIU so I can be on my way to becoming a Nurse in a couple of years. Most importantly, I want to be a better person, a better man, and a better husband to my wife. And yes, I have some geeky/gamer resolutions as well, but I’ll go over those later on.
As I stand here, looking towards the vastness of 2011 ahead of me, I am choosing to feel good about it and welcome it, with all the challenges it is sure to bring, with open arms. I say “Bring it!” not as a bravado-filled taunt, but as a matter-of-fact statement. Whether I want it or not, 2011 will pass. It is up to me to be a willing passenger or let it trample me as it does. I’ve got my ticket. I’m getting in this bus. Let’s rock.