Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011: The Year of Rebirth

Looking back on 2011, I can see some tremendous strides that our little family has taken. While 2010 was a year of change and pain, 2011 was the rebirth of my soul, our lives and our home. It feels great to look back on the year and see all that was accomplished, and to know all of the pain and loss in 2010 was not in vain. I learned from the loss, have been soothing the hurt and have witnessed my girls blossom as I've never seen before. Here are a few highlights, since I was so woefully absent from blogging this year...

  • Sadie's Bragging Rights
    • Speech - Sadie has long suffered from a speech impediment, often making her hard to understand to even our closest family members. This year Sadie conquered the letter sounds "l" and made significant progress with her "r"s. 
    • Kindergarten - Sadie's social skills continue to grow as her speech develops. She's little-miss-know-everyone in the school and her silly personality brightens up almost every path she crosses. It's so hard to believe this funny little girl was once a screaming, drug withdrawn infant. 
    • "Perfect" Heart - well, as close as you can get to one when you've had TGA, at least. This year Dr. Allen took a good look at the ultrasound and declared her heart to be the most perfect TGA switch he's ever seen. She's in fantastic health, so much so that we get to skip next year's cardiology appointment!
  • Katie's Accomplishments
    • Social growth - While 2010 was a year of introversion and sadness for Katie, 2011 offered new friends and tons of fun with them. It's heartwarming to walk into stores and have kids come running up to her to say hi. She even has a boy that has a crush on her in her class (she politely turned his "Do you like me" note away and told him they could be friends). She's come so very far post-divorce, and gained an incredible amount of self-confidence this year. I hope we continue to see growth in that area in 2012!
    • Smarty Pants - she's getting great grades (all A's), and has really grown this fall and into winter with her 3rd grade teacher. Thank goodness for her revitalized love of learning!
    • Soccer Diva - She's finally found her stride in soccer. While she's not yet the very best kid on the field, she does try very, very hard and is gaining confidence and skill each season.
  • My Metamorphosis
    • Career Growth - at phenomenal speeds. I received a double promotion in May at Ironworks Consulting. As much as I loved the firm, I couldn't help but jump when Dominion Digital crossed my path and another bump up the ladder was dangled in front of me. DDIG, as Dominion is affectionately called, has more heart and soul than any other company I've encountered, and I've enjoyed spending the last couple of months reconnecting with my core needs and spending some time evaluating what I want to do when I grow up. The company is in a metamorphosis as well, and I can't feel that I am at the right place, at the right time. Another big change is on the horizon in terms of my career (as soon as within a month or two), and I'm very, very excited and optimistic.
    • The boyfriend. Yep, I had a boyfriend this year for five months. It was a learning experience, too - learning who I really am, what I really want in a relationship and such. And I figured out that I'm not ready for one quite yet. We had a blast together this summer with our kids and each other, and I rekindled my love for the water and learned how to just sit still and enjoy nature again thanks to him. I'm already planning my summer around how I can get the kids to the water, camping and outdoors more frequently! Anyway, the boyfriend was the first step in reclaiming my romantic life from the ruins left behind by divorce. I left the relationship feeling more confident, happier and healthier than I have in years.
    • I gained a brother! And there has not been a luckier sister-in-law than I on this earth. I'm thrilled for Kerinda's happiness, and absolutely adore Spencer. He's made my life and the girls lives better and was an amazing source of support this, and the last few, years. Kerinda and Spencer's wedding was amazing, and a fantastic time was had by all.
A few other events shaped (or enlivened) our lives this past year. Highlights include:
  • The earthquake of 2011, which literally rocked our world here in Richmond.
  • Hurricane Irene, and our fantastic neighbors we weathered it out with. I heart YellowRose.
  • The Japanese earthquake, tsunami and flooding, which we all watched with horror and tears. 
  • My final term on the CJSTUF board. I really enjoyed helping to get the nonprofit off the ground in previous years, though I admittedly had little time this year to devote to the charity in 2011 compared to previous years.
And with that long, drawn out post, I close the blog out for 2011. The new year offers so much promise for our family, we can't wait to see what it brings!!

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