Good-bye and good riddance to 2013, not our finest or happiest year for sure. While that is not entirely true because there were high points such as college acceptances, enjoyable school shows and concerts and all the joy that children bring, there was a mighty low when my husband lost his job again. So here we sit, poised yet again at the start of the new year full of promise and opportunity. The only difference is that this year, I am not feeling it at all. This is the fourth year that we are in the same position without a job and to be honest, I have grown fearful of being optimistic. More to the point, based on our experiences over the past three plus years, I feel foolish being optimistic only to get my hopes up and then have them dashed yet again. To dream about a better job this time, one more stable and (dare I even say it out loud) one that actually pays well seems almost ridiculous. But, since the new year is all about fresh starts, resolutions and change, I have decided to adjust my unemployment battle-weary approach to the year ahead and embrace a new, fresh attitude.
This year, I say to hell with positivity (a word I detest even on a good day) and to being the 'bigger person' (my mom's mantra) all the time. Somewhere along the way in my journey these past four years, I got lost. Terribly cliche, no? Between this seemingly endless search for yet another job for my husband, the constant tumult of our lives as a result and the chaos I feel we have heaped on our children, I stopped being the 'me' I used to know. These days, I am filled with self-doubt and concern at our inability to turn this rotten financial situation around. I have been second-guessing my choices and I am in a state of perpetual stress.
So, though I am not a believer in resolutions for many reasons, I have written some goals for myself on Post-It notes so that I can carry them with me as constant reminders of staying the course. While I am hoping that 2014 brings lots of positive change for us, based on the past few years, I am even more cautiously optimistic than usual. I do know, however, that I am going to try to get a little bit of my old self back by not listening so fervently to what other people feel I should be doing but, rather, to do what I want to do even if that does not make me the 'bigger person' as often as my mom might like.
Happy New Year!