Birthday Reflections, 2011

Each year I like to look back over the previous year, and then set goals for the coming year. Many people do this on Jan 1st; I prefer to do it on my birthday. I often refine the accomplishments and goals until my new year, Samhain, but the bulk of the work is done on or around my birthday. I also like to do a tarot reading (and other’s readings of me are ALWAYS welcomed).

Last year’s reading was . . . interesting. I didn’t share it at the time, but will do so a little later so you can see what I think about it, and how accurate it was.

This year’s reading is also interesting, although for different reasons. The World covers me, Judgement crosses me, The Moon is passing away, and The Magician is my final outcome. Along the way, my goal is the Two of Pentacles, my foundation is the Queen of Wands, and the Eight of Pentacles is an approaching influence. My self is the Five of Wands, my environment is the Two of Swords, and my hopes & fears are embodies by the Three of Cups. I note with particular interest that the Two of Swords was my final outcome last year, so I’m still finishing that energy and the new reading’s energy is overlapping a bit.

J. noted that the 2s make sense as I am merging my life with his, and we’re making a lot of yes/no decisions as a part of that merging. I think that is a very insightful reading and will see how it plays out.

What have I accomplished this last year? My first reaction was, not much. But I always say that, so I’ve learned to dig a little deeper. (Btw: I’ve been doing this exercise, and I have the notes to prove it, since 1996. Yay for written documentation.)

  1. Updated Facing North to a better format with more categories and a much better behind-the-scenes functionality.
  2. Found more reviewers for FN, and better ones at that, making the number of reviews I had to do much (much) fewer and increasing the quality at the same time.
  3. Achieved my savings goal.
  4. Traveled, a LOT. (Las Vegas, Sumter, NYC, Philadelphia, Miami Beach, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Ashland.)
  5. Wrote my will, and Living Will.
  6. Spent more time on playing. This is actually an annual goal — I do NOT spend enough time on play for the sake of play. I’m just kind of bad at it. So I’ve been working to incorporate more playtime into my life.
  7. Completed a needlepoint project.
  8. Expanded our cooking repertoire by approximately 50%. We were a little stuck in a rut with our meals, so I’ve actively been seeking out recipes and choosing new things to cook each week. We’ve had some spectacular failures, but by and large have added significant;y to our household cookbook.
  9. I’ve made an effort to be a more authentic person at the office. This has been extremely difficult at times because of politics and a truly poor manager; but I feel I’ve managed to be myself, be honest, and be valuable.
  10. I’ve returned to Muay Thai — this needs to be read to the sound of a loud flourish. I barely made it (my first class was on Sept 1st), but I succeeded. It’s been 6 years since I injured myself and fell into my decline in health. I’m finally climbing back out.
  11. I’ve done the work that enabled me to climb out of my shell still further; overcoming my native shyness and introverted personality has been difficult, but I feel I’ve done a very good job. I have more friends than I did a year ago, and I think they are good friends.
  12. I gained four pounds of muscle mass.
  13. I sold a story to SageWoman (“Keep Walking”) which was published earlier in 2011; I’ve sold four articles to Llewellyn annuals which will publish in 2013.
  14. I restarted the Art of Ritual class, and we have a GREAT bunch of students.
  15. Got engaged. Now, this one is funny, because usually if it shows up on a list of accomplishments, there’s a whole lot of snickering that can happen. In my case, I needed to do a lot of internal work to come to understand that I *did* want to make a very public commitment in a very traditional manner. Then I had to do the work to come to understand how to tell J. that I’d made this decision. (It was made far easier by J. which is one of the truths of my life.)

What remains on my list, year after year? Losing weight. This last year was especially depressing since I actually GAINED 36 pounds, despite eating healthier and exercising a lot more than I did PC (pre-cancer). I refuse to give in to despair, I *am* healthier than I was, and I am able to do so much more. The tire will come off the middle, I just haven’t found the right combination that does it. (Before you ask, counting calories is not sufficient, I’ve been doing that for 6 months and haven’t lost weight; exercise is also not sufficient. I’m also pretty sure I’m not allergic to anything. I’m struggling with the ugly trifecta of being over 40, in menopause, and on tamoxifen. )

For the coming year, here’s what I plan on achieving:

  • Lose weight (ideally, 60 pounds by March) in a manner that is sustainable throughout the rest of my life.
  • Exercise daily, a mix of Muay Thai, Pilates, walking and stretching.
  • Fully fund my 401(k) and IRA.
  • Pay down the mortgage significantly.
  • Handmake all holiday cards and gifts.
  • Plan, with J., a wedding ceremony and day that reflects us in all of our strange glory while still being a huge amount of fun for all who participate.
  • PLAY.
  • Finish another needlepoint project. (The one I completed last year took 12+ years to finish.)
  • Organize and compile scrap books.
  • Convert as much of my files to softcopy as possible.
  • Inventory our books (we merged our books, so now its a bit of a mess).
  • Finish updating and rating music inventory.
  • Start composting (vermiculture) and install water barrels.
  • Pass the SPHR (in November, I believe)

That’s enough to get me started. I’ve come to accept that I don’t achieve every goal, but I always achieve more than I expected, so it pretty much always works out.

Wait, let me state this more clearly: I am proud of my accomplishments. I have had a successful year and am please with myself.

3 thoughts on “Birthday Reflections, 2011

  1. Pingback: » Blog Archive » A Year In Review (2012)

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