Looking back from this side of the new year, I can’t say I’m sorry to see the end of 2013.
Early in the year, we thought my Dad was dying of congestive heart failure and I spent months silently grieving that I would loose him. It turns out his pacemaker wasn’t working as it should, but it took a perforated bowel, a lifeflight helicopter ride and weeks in the ICU for someone to figure it out. He’s got a replacement pacemaker and is doing drastically better now.
This year also saw the loss of my Great Aunt and my Brother in Law. There’s been death and grieving, with a whopping helping of worry.
But the thing that’s drastically changed my life this year is Fibromyalgia. I’ve been dealing with it since maybe November 2012, but it snuck up on me. I’ve had sciatic nerve pain for years, but then it started to change. Things got worse, I would push through it, and it would be better for a time. Eventually I got to the point where I had more bad days in a week than good days and I finally sought a doctor’s help. In August I got an official diagnosis and started a drug trial (for which I feel certain I was on the placebo). Thankfully the drug trial is finally done now and I’ve begun a treatment course that (so far) seems to be working.
I’m learning that a diagnosis like this can drastically change your life. I used to be able to commit to things, but now I can’t predict what level of focus, energy or pain I’ll have from one day to the next. To say it’s required a bit of adjustment would be the understatement of the century. I used to define my worth as a human being by how productive I was. I would gleefully check off my to do list and when someone asked “What did you do today?” I could rattle off a mile-long list and feel accomplished. I’ve had to shift my priorities, my self-image, and my expectations. But I have to admit that I really miss work. I’m hoping for the best with this drug therapy so that I can have creative thought again and enough energy to produce new designs.
The constant thread this year (and probably the only thing that’s kept me sane), is my Year of Making. I’ll be posting in detail later this week about how it went, but having this photo project, having one thing every day that I COULD accomplish without much effort, helped me immensely. Even on a day when I couldn’t put on a bra, or put away the clean dishes, at least I could take a photograph that would be one more brick in the great wall of a completed daily photo project.
And in the past few days a whole slew of new people have joined me for 2014’s #YearOfMaking. Frankly, it’s kind of exploded. There are people doing it who I’ve never met. I’ve been looking at the twitter and IG feeds for the hashtag and I’m in awe.
So looking forward, I have some goals for 2014 in addition to doing the Year of Making again. Some of them are carryovers from last year that I didn’t get to do, but there are some new ones too:
1. Make my own cheese
2. Learn to play the guitar
3. Make a soufflé
4. Try free motion machine quilting
5. Write more letters
When all the shit started falling down, it was hard to know what to say online. Trying to determine what should and shouldn’t be public knowledge is difficult in this time of eternal information. That worry really made this blog a last priority, and I’ve missed the connection I had because of it. I have to spend some time rebuilding my online friend network and reconnecting with the people I’ve missed over the last year. So bear with me.
I love you guys and am thankful every day for the support of this fantastic knitting community. Let’s start a discussion. What are your goals this year? What do you want to accomplish?