where wildly different is perfectly normal
Reflection. Not just for a mountain lake.
Reflection. Not just for a mountain lake.

Reflection. Not just for a mountain lake.

On Facebook yesterday, Christina Katz put forth this challenge:

Just for one moment, before the clock ticks to 2013, I’d love it if all of you would spend time considering all the things you did RIGHT this year. And by right, I mean: right for you. I hope the choices you made all year helped make your life more joyful, productive and prosperous. And I hope you continue to make the best choices for your life in 2013! Happy New Year weekend, everyone. It’s going to be an awesome year! 🙂

And I say challenge, because that is what it is for me. I don’t often reflect upon what goes right, even when it’s painfully obvious that there is a lot there. It’s easier to see (and spin out of control over) the things that go wrong. Squeaky wheel and all that. So I took on this challenge and hoped for the best.

I wrote a book. People like it, it has been well received (more so than I could have ever hoped), and it is something of which I am proud. Carving out the time to write it was tough, and I anticipate that will never change. I’m always going to have kids/other commitments/life demanding I close the laptop and pay attention to it. But, by God, that book got written. With it under my belt, I’m excited about doing more writing.

The best decision of the year, made at the end of 2011, was to homeschool A. I can say without a doubt that THAT was something I did right this year. The decision, I mean. The actual homeschooling makes me think on an hourly basis that he’ll never learn enough to get a job earning enough to afford the therapist he’ll need to get over how badly I screwed him up. <pssst…this post is supposed to be things you did right!> But despite all my doubts, despite the challenges, this was the right thing to do.

We painted every room in the house, save one. This may not seem like something big enough to be on this list, but yeah, it is. The place looks brighter and cleaner and more like us. We even sucked it up and painted the kitchen cabinets (file under: Never Again). The final room, a bathroom, will be done next summer. It needs a new sink/vanity, and a new toilet would be a good idea, and that’s a lot more than we care to deal with right now.

I recognized that maybe I should get a handle on the intermittent insomnia. And I finally got my soul-sucking anxiety under control.

I announced to the world that I don’t brag about my gifted kid (though I am damned proud of him), and it blew up my blog. That was something I did right.

I have a proudly geeky son.

I picked up my flute again, and became a dedicated amateur with a professional background. My first wind ensemble concert in over a decade was sweet indeed. I missed it so, and am so so grateful to be playing again.

The upcoming year is the first in many for which I am excited. For whatever reason, I am optimistic and hopeful for the months ahead. Trust me, it’s been a long time coming; the last few years have sucked little green frogs. I have much I want and need to improve, and I actually feel that I can for a change. But tonight, I know I’ve done something right this year. Maybe not a whole lot, but enough.


  1. Lauren

    What an inspiring post – fantastic to focus on celebrating what went well during the past year, not what wasn’t good or what could happen only in the coming year. Congratulations on some wonderful achievements! And thanks for reminding us to celebrate our own successes too…

  2. It seems to me that a scale would put your Things Done Right and Things That Sucked Little Green Frogs pretty even. Maybe even tilting toward Writing A Book. My scale is tilting slightly towards the good, but barely moving from Eh, Another OK Year.

    1. Jen

      This next year I plan to focus a little more in The Things Done Right. I set up one of those good-things jars you see floating around Pinterest. A year from now I hope it’s overflowing.

  3. Pingback: That was the year that was 2012 | Sprite's Site

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