I know people are always saying “don’t look back, you’re not going that way,” but I think it’s a good idea to take stock of what went wrong (and right!) in the previous year so you can make the necessary changes – unless you are happily content, and in that case, what’s your secret?? Is it possible to be content and restless at the same time?
Anyway, if I could say one thing about 2015 it’s “thankful” … that it’s over!
I don’t think I’m alone in being grateful that 2015 has taken its final bow. It seems that 2015 was especially hard on a lot of people for all kinds of personal reasons, and this post was originally filled with all the ways 2015 sucked (Debbie Downer, much?), but I’m really trying to remain positive in 2016 to continue to help keep my depression at bay! I think that should include finding the nuggets of joy and gratitude from this past year, even when things seemed to be spiraling out of control.
So here are the highlights and lowlights of 2015 – may they inspire me towards a greater 2016!
Low: 2015 started with my uncle passing away after battling cancer for several years.
High: ??? I’m just going to let January go…
February, March, April, and May
Low: I have no idea where these months went – it appears I literally worked my life away.
High: I’m grateful to have a well-enough paying job that allows me, as a single woman in out-of-control-over-priced-Portland, to afford my own apartment and pay all my bills, including the unexpected ones.
Low: I was hit by a van while walking in a crosswalk. I haven’t talked about it yet because my claim is still open, and my elbow is still not healing properly. Also, when your body gets hit by a car, your insurance won’t pay for it. You have to pay out of pocket (or try to get your car insurance involved even though your car wasn’t involved!) then ask for reimbursement from the other guy’s insurance. It’s a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad system!
High: Getting hit made me realize how happy I am to be alive, and was a wake up call that I have more life to live — if only I can figure out what that looks like.
I honestly don’t remember July – I was probably high on “I’m so glad I’m alive!” juice. Doctor appointments, healing, probably took a couple long weekends… we’ll call July good.
High: Camping vacation with my parents! A very needed and enjoyable refresh!
High: One of my best friends got married – yaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!
Low: One of my cats started acting funny and I spent $850 to find out he had bladder stones and opted to try to treat with special (expensive) food instead of surgery.
High: Busy season at work again and still grateful to be employed!
Low: I turned another year older with nothing to show for it while everyone around me seemed to be getting married, buying houses, having babies, and traveling the world.
High: Still super happy to be alive and grateful for my life even if it’s not going the way I thought it would!
Low: My cat had to go back for another $850 vet appointment to find out that the special expensive food wasn’t working and I had to immediately choose between $2,000 major surgery or putting him to sleep… I chose the major surgery (and additional debt). His three weeks of recovery was pretty much the worst, most constantly stressful weeks of 2015, and I’m certain that my hair turned even greyer.
High: I’m thankful I was able to work from home, and take PTO, to take care of him. I’m also grateful that I live near my parents and my mom could help me at 6am when my cat got his cone-of-shame stuck on his teeth… she also brought me food. Thanks Mom!!
Low: it went by way too fast and I realized that I’d gained 20 pounds since June. Apparently just being happy to be alive does not keep the weight off.
High: My niece’s 2nd Birthday (she’s the cutest niece ever!) and two weeks of vacation to spend with family at Christmas, and end the year with lots and lots and lots and lots of glorious naps!
Final thoughts for 2015:
In writing (and rewriting) this post I realized how much I have to be grateful for even if the year was full of stress that I had no control over. Not being in control (or at least not know what’s going on) is also in and of itself a huge stress point for me, so I guess 2015 was a good lesson in letting go.
I’m still working on breaking down my goals for 2016, which I will share later, but for now I am reminded that I can make all the plans I want, but I am not ultimately in control. Goals and plans are good things, but we also need to be prepared to take a different path if needed.
God is still working on me, and for that I am extra grateful!
Did you have a good 2015? Have you set some goals you like to accomplish in 2016?