It seems an endless slog, 2008 does. It has, however, a very special place in my heart because it’s when my writing career, after 17 years of hard working and trying, came into a bit more focus and provided the very likeness of the thing I set out to create: The ability to write for many different publications on many different topics that interest me. I owe it mostly to the local paper and particularly to Mike Comeaux, one of the editors at the paper with whom I work-the finest editor I’ve had the pleasure of writing for. Because of the newspaper gig, I was able to talk my way into a few other gigs as well and even a few clients to boot. So, in that sense–the biggest sense–2008 was wonderful.
It was grand to watch Peanut grow into her 7th year on our planet and she’s doing so well, so wonderfully. She’s come a long way from just a year ago when, faced with Sofie’s departure, her best friend’s departure and a few other large changes, she wilted under the strain and became a “clinger” on to her mom. That has largely disappeared and she has combined a new sense of real independence and growth with a keen and logical mind, an incredible sense of mathematics and a delightful funny personality. I don’t know how many people have told me what an incredible thing it is to raise a child, but they’re all right. You just have to get open to the ride–and God knows, I wasn’t for a long time. I am now, though.
That also changed in 2008. I became more open to dad-hood. I simply demanded it of myself, to be honest. At once, I determined to work harder and more hours (as a writer) and still provide plenty of time for being “daddy” to my second grader and I’m proud to say both worked.
So–why a long slog? I’m asking you, not me. Well, I suppose if you measure 2008 in terms of the news, politics, elections, budgets, recessions, wars, and all the rest of it–well, it was a long and difficult slog. But of course, my point here is just the opposite: 2008 wasn’t about those things, though they certainly happened.
I made a determination to make some profound changes in my life and in my family’s life in 08 and I did. They were all for the better and so I think it’s just that. Of course, we’re all going to have to respond to the circumstances around us–jobs, money, all of that is a vital function of who we are and we need to pay attention to it. My family is no different than any other, we too have had to make some sacrifices and I expect there will be more. But, that’s not what 2008 was about. 2008, and I dare say 2009, 2010, etc. will be about this:
Creating a life for myself and my family that brings us closer together, honoring God, our values and our lives–while reaching out to create closer and better relationships with those around us.
Happy New Year indeed.