I sat down to write this post, intending to share all of my successes (and a few failures, because keepin’ it real, yo) in chasing after my hopes and dreams for 2016. When the new year dawned, as always, I was full of big plans. Get in shape, and get my confidence back! Make progress on some of the big memory-keeping projects I have on the go! Read challenging stuff! Embrace a slower pace! Write a project off-blog! But when I looked over my – admittedly not that taxing – list of goals, I haven’t accomplished any of them. I haven’t even really got any progress to show for six months of the year.
I definitely don’t have my old confidence back. Before I got pregnant with Nugget, I was in the best shape I’d been in for quite some time. I had just blown my half marathon PR out of the water – twice – by thirteen minutes each time, cutting my time by twenty-six minutes (that’s two minutes per mile!) between my first and third 13.1s. I’d ridden in several long-distance bike races, climbed two Adirondack high peaks, and completed three Whole 30s. This year… I haven’t done anything like any of that. Instead, I’ve learned that my limitations are very different with a preschooler, a baby, and a high-pressure job, than they were when I was a stay-at-home-mom with one easygoing toddler. Who knew? I still want to get back to the same level of athletic performance that I was enjoying pre-Nugget, but I’m learning that the road there is going to be a little different. I do have some plans, but haven’t been able to set them in motion just yet – although I’m hoping that Nugget’s recent stretch of sleeping through the night will be our new normal, and that I can start getting up earlier to get some workouts in. More to come, I hope.
I also haven’t done the best job of memory-keeping. I think I’m doing a darn good job at memory-making, but the keeping part has been eluding me recently. I have always taken a step back in the summer, but when I made the goal I had a long winter stretching ahead of me, and I envisioned evenings spent working on Nugget’s baby book, catching up on some old family yearbooks, and getting a head start on our 2016 book. That hasn’t happened. Again, I have some plans on this front, and I hope to set them in motion soon. Starting with Nugget’s baby book, because it’s really quite shameful, the state it’s in. He’s a much-loved little guy, but the fact is, I was a lot more organized about memory-keeping for his sister.
As for my bookshelves, for awhile I was doing pretty well at reading diverse books and ticking categories off the Read Harder Challenge list, but I’ve sort of fallen off the wagon on both of those goals. And the Classics Club wagon rolled out of the station without me. I blame podcasts, and one in particular – Tea or Books? – which has exploded my TBR list with mid-century middlebrow British fiction. And you know what? I’m not even sorry. Although I do want to make a little more progress on the reading goals I set myself at the beginning of the year.
Embracing the slow might be the only one of my goals for the year that I can say I’ve actually done. And that’s mainly because there was nothing to do on that front, but get my arms around slowing down. Right now, I’m in a stage of life where my weekdays are very full and hectic, and I’ve pretty much had to simply buckle in for the ride. So I have been making an effort to slow down my weekends. It probably doesn’t seem that way, because we’re always on the go – I struggle to balance the need for rest with my desire to have ALL THE FAMILY FUN. But one thing that’s great about kids is they force you to slow down and appreciate the little moments. Ain’t nobody rushing them out of the sandbox.
I could probably use some of that sandbox time to work on my off-blog writing project, on which I have done exactly nothing, so the less said about that, the better.
As for my word for the year, for 2016 I chose HOME. At the time I picked it – or really, it picked me – we were preparing for another move. We downsized our house and moved into a townhome while we worked on answering some big questions about what living situation is right for our family. The first six months of the year, HOME has probably seemed a little absent from this space – and I know, I know, I said it was going to infuse my writing and my living this year. Well, my word might not be coming across in my writing, but it’s always on my mind. Answering those questions – what is a home, what does the concept of home mean for me – is still the over-arching theme of my year, even if I’ve held it a little closer than I meant to. When the time is right, when I feel ready, I’ll be here to talk about it.
How is your 2016 going?