Looking back, looking ahead for... a Bridgewater Soccer Mom

Yesterday's entry was bleak. I write today's blog while listening to NPR and drinking my coffee. NPR just went through the decade. A decade ago I lived in a different world - or, well, in a different country. I had a job I loved, but was in the middle of a year-long maternity leave. A decade ago I probably was thinking that it might be the year I would lose my Mom - and I did in July 2001. A decade ago I thought I had the best neighbors in the world - as the decade ends I have even more proof that if you are a good friend to others you'll never be lonely.

January 2010 will always be the month of doctors appointments. Looking back now I counted 20 in my planner. It started with an ER visit and my son's "stapled head". Two weeks later my husband ran over his foot with a truck. Yes, it is possible! That was also the day my son could claim he jumped out of a moving truck. At least he has something interesting to write on his college applications! "When I was 9 I jumped out of a moving truck". My husband's foot has recovered except for some lingering bruises. I'm still traumatized however by the thoughts that in a matter of a few seconds I could have been a widow.

We had many good times in 2010. My son won his first award in school and we spent a lot of time in my home town. My friends gathered together. I went to a wedding in New Hampshire and reconnected with people who were vital to my in my childhood. My daughter discovered she loves summer camp. She flew on an airplane alone - perhaps that was a step for me as a parent: letting go. We spent time with relatives on both sides of the Atlantic. I knit projects, read books, spent time with friends and drank too much wine. I spent time in a bikini (whether a woman of my stature belongs in a bikini is a matter of taste) on various beaches, my toes planted in the sand. I cheered my kids on... aloud and silently. They both made new friends. I did too... and we had lots of guests - as usual. This year I think we actually had 15 weeks of guests - including my Dad who was here for more than 8 weeks (and we had another guest from England during one of those weeks), my in-laws were with us for a total of 4.

I don't want 2010 to end because I am apprehensive about 2011. I have sick friends and relatives who will need a miracle to make it into 2012. I am worried about my 85 year old Dad. I am worried about myself. I've applied for several jobs this fall and I keep getting turned down - a dream job last week said I didn't make the 2nd interview. My kids need me less and less and I am looking for more and more. I want to lose weight - but I'm even scared to do that. Change is scary.

Then again, I have to admit I'm optimistic. What if 2011 is the year I get a dreamy job - one that lets me balance work and home life? And if I don't get that, what if 2011 is the year I take the bull by the horns and take the roadtrip I've been dreaming about for years starting in Vancouver and ending in San Diego visiting all my friends along the way? What if 2011 is the year my house suddenly becomes a bastion of neatness or my mind clear? What if I learn Spanish in 2011 or decide to do something drastically different - start a business, start a religion, start a country? The options seem endless.

But for now, I'm not done with 2010. I've got about 40 rounds on the arm of "the sweater" that I started in August of 2009. Finishing that by 2011 is an attainable goal. I might need some coffee in order to make it. And usually a coffee is best with friends. 2010 isn't over yet. Call me, I'll see if I can still fit you in for coffee this decade... before the ball drops.... there's still time!

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