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2012 In Retrospect

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

At the beginning of the year, I wrote a blog splitting the year into two parts and making a goal for each - part 1 was "Year of the B.A.M.F" and part 2 was "Year of the M.I.L.F"

It is not lost on me that the first part involved very specific fitness goals (training for the Flying Pig and the Warrior Dash) and the second part just involved the much more general "losing the rest of this weight"

Thus it in no way surprises me that I succeeded at the first part (mostly), but the second half of the year fell far short of anything resembling M.I.L.F.-hood (well, the mate is forever telling me I'm a MILF to HIM, but he's got some special glasses or something and sees things I don't see - and he's awesome like that).

The thing is, I already knew as I wrote that blog that my life was going to take a drastic turn when I eventually left my job in the spring, even though I didn't have any idea specifically how that was going to go down or what the consequences would look like. I suspect, with the future that murky, I didn't want to put anything down in stone from the summer on because I didn't know what life was going to look like. That was both wise (I could never have imagined how things actually went down) and short-sighted. Because for me, if I don't have specifics to work for, I get easily distracted from the bigger picture.

That said, I really can't complain about 2012 (my mate would argue that, but he's still pulling out of generalized depression and is still mired in a job-hunt-from-hell that has him pretty discouraged and ready to put 2012 behind him).

For me, this has been a year not only of transition, but of transformation:

emoticon Trained for and completed the Flying Pig Marathon with my daughter.

emoticonLeft my soul-sucking job on my own terms.

emoticonStarted STNA (State Tested Nurses Aide) training the Monday after the marathon, passed with flying colors and passed the state test in June.

emoticonWent back to school, for the 2 year RN program at Cincinnati State

emoticon Went on two stellar trips over the summer, one a family outing including all 4 (if I include the daughter-in-lawless, which I do) of my kids to Origins Game Fair, and another meeting up with chosen family at Sirius Rising Festival, both of which rejuvenated me and (Sirius Rising in particular) gave me the "spiritual oomph" I needed to hit the job-finding trail when we got back.

emoticonStarted working at a job I LOVE, at a facility with a mission I can get behind (it's one of only 3 facilities like it in the entire country, focusing mostly on the needs of people struggling with Multiple Sclerosis, so the population is far younger on average than your usual nursing home population, and thus have pretty unique needs) and that actually appreciates it's employees (to the tune of $100 Kroger gift cards at both Thanksgiving and Christmas, and a REAL holiday party - not just a deli meat tray - which totally blew me away). I've gone from part time to full time to training new STNAs on my floor - not too shabby. :)

The not so stellar is two-fold - we are really struggling financially. The final blow there came yesterday - I had to cancel my gym membership. :( I knew it was coming, and had made myself a deal that if I worked out 3X a week through the month of December, I could reward myself with a Planet Fitness membership (which is far cheaper and is open 24 hours, thus making it theoretically easier to fit into my crazy schedule), and I did pretty well the first two weeks, but then I got hit with the first migraine I've had in about two years...and the following week my grandson was born, and getting to the gym fell way down on the priority list. *sighs* If I'm honest with myself, we can't afford Planet Fitness right now either, and honestly it's too far away for me to expect myself to do consistently. So, whereas I would have been emotionally devastated at the beginning of December to have to cancel (why I gave myself an extra month we couldn't afford), I'm now resigned to it. I can always go back when we get back on our feet again, and I really have NO excuse not to use the gym at school (which is included in my tuition, and thus essentially free). It's not the same (mostly jocks, smaller, I'll have to shower etc. when I get home), but it's there. And yeah, doing walking/wogging around my neighborhood is tougher in winter. But it's still possible, and I still find training for races the best motivator to get me moving, so I need to get back to that (have to get my inhaler prescription refilled first though - but now that I have insurance again, that's just a matter of calling my doctor and picking it up, which I intend to do by the end of this week, or as soon as he's back in the office anyway).

Which of course leads into the other not-so-stellar - see, since I started working at the new job, the gym time has fallen off the radar, and I've gained back some weight. I am starting 2013 at 208 lbs. *shudders* My clothes don't fit, and I hate it (I'm terrified my scrub pants are going to split on me some night at work, though I don't think they're THAT tight yet, not really, but it's close enough to worry me). It's not a surprise - I mean, between school and working full time, I'm exhausted (and the semester that's starting next week is going to be worse for sleep - I have an 8:00 AM class 3 days a week, which is going to SUCK on days when I have to work until 11pm the night before - I'm working with the scheduling coordinate at work to minimize when that happens, but it'll happen at least once, and probably twice, a week no matter what we hammer out). I've also caught myself turning to food as comfort BECAUSE I'm so exhausted (the old "I had a rough night at work, I deserve ice cream" routine). And there is far more "alcohol to unwind before bed" going on than is probably healthy either.

SO, I'm looking at the coming year, realizing that I need a solid plan if I'm going to stop the upward creep I'm seeing on the scale, and get my health back under control (I've had a number of physical issues - including the current cold I'm dealing with that is also the first serious cold I've had in about 2 years - that, the more I think about it, the more I realize they are probably directly related to my declining fitness and increasing weight). I need to get healthy again. I need to NOT buy a larger size of clothing. I need the sense of accomplishment I feel when I achieve a new fitness goal. And I need the endorphin rush I get during working out to keep me happy, or the exhaustion I expect this semester is going to do me in.

And I need a plan soon.

Stay tuned - the semester starts next Monday. By some time next weekend, I'll have a goal blog posted to map things out for the coming year. I already know it will involve the American Heart Association Heartwalk on St. Patrick's Day (though I don't know that I'll try putting a team together again after the let-down of last year), and there's an MS run that resembles the Warrior Dash in July that I KNOW I'm going to do (and maybe get my co-workers involved in somehow, there's at least one STNA that is a fellow marathoner, and one of the LPNs gave me the Planet Fitness idea - dude is a BEAST, OMG those guns...seriously).

So, here we go 2013.
Bring it.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    2211 days ago
    WOW that sounds like an awesome place.... I wish there were more like that here. I know of one floor of a huge nursing home that is dedicated to 30-50 so thats not too bad. I worked in long term care for years and it is sad to see someone in their 20 or 30 grouped in with all these old people, some who have"gone there to die my dear". I think that your state is to be commended for this. GREAT and congrats on how well you are doing too!

    2212 days ago
    We're still here! Happy New Year to you and yours. I'm cheering for you!
    2225 days ago
    Last year was so challenging, on so many fronts, for lots of us. But is wasn't a total loss, which is one of the victories you can celebrate. You are doing something you love, and even though things are tight right now, they will get better. They WILL! You know what you need to do, and I know you have the gumption and desire to make it happen. I am so proud of you, and you know all your sparkfriends are behind you all the way.



    2228 days ago
  • 4CYNDI
    Change in life brings many unanticipated challenges and stress. I think you did great to get through a very tough and draining year. This year WILL be better. You will make it so, just like I will. I had a tough year and and up over my starting weight with Spark People. This means I'm at my heaviest since 2007. Sigh. Anyway love your blog and glad to hear from you.
    2236 days ago
  • MISSG180
    You are doing an amazing job of keeping it together, all things considered. I am inspired by you.

    Yeah, there are places that need improving. But you can only juggle so much. Keep up the good work!
    2236 days ago
    I absolutely love your comment that 2012 was not just a year of transition but of transformation. Wow! Will be waiting to read about plans for this year!
    2236 days ago
    EU, congrats on the good things. Maybe you should start a good news jar for 2013 like I see several people doing. You have a jar and slip a 1 liner of good news in it ever day then read on NYE 2013!
    2237 days ago
    Here's to a great 2013!
    2237 days ago
    I hope 2013 brings you great success in your health, fitness and other life goals. Good luck. Enjoy!
    2237 days ago
    I so agree on the whole needing a plan thing. I'm excited to see what you have in store!
    2237 days ago
    Here's to a happy and successful 2013! Great to see an update from you.
    2237 days ago
  • COOP9002
    Look's like you're ready for whatever is next. Nice job on 2012.
    2237 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    2237 days ago
    Wishing you the best in 2013.
    2237 days ago
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