Looking back on 2015, I can say it has been an interesting year. In the grand scheme of things, I don’t suppose my year has been all that remarkable or unusual from most peoples’, but there were some standout moments — great ones, good ones, not so good ones. Sounds like life itself, doesn’t it?
I enjoy reviewing the past and then assessing where and how I am in the present. This helps me look ahead for the future. Here’s what comes to mind for me about 2015.
In January, I sailed off as a solo traveler on another Country Music Cruise and again had a wonderful time. I met and made some new friends, enjoyed different adventures, and relaxed while having fun.
In February, I attended my first International Tai Chi workshop which motivated me to attend a couple of more not long after. Overall, these and other experiences led to me increasing my commitment to my studies and practice of this ancient art and my service to our organization in keeping with its principles and philosophies.
Spring flew by with, unfortunately, a small car accident in May. Thankfully I wasn’t badly hurt, although it took a few months for my car to be repaired and returned. The weeks lead up to early June and my high school class’s 40th Reunion. I traveled up home to New Jersey and saw several friends I haven’t seen in a while even before I got to the reunion. It was a blast reconnecting and spending time with so many friends. I hope we don’t wait decades before seeing each other again.
Immediately after the reunion, I went to a big conference for work and was completely surprised to receive a wonderful honor from the association! There were a myriad of professional, work-related challenges and successes. I think overall, it was a period of personal growth for me in this field.
Somewhere in the midst of all this activity, I did a course of Euflexxa injections to help alleviate some of the pain in my arthritic right knee. I guess it’s good that I did so, because also in the first six months of the year, I developed a severe case of plantar fasciitis. I suffered tremendous heel pain when walking. This drastically affected my activity level and even made it painful and difficult for me to walk Nat and Pyxi. Collectively, our exercise and fitness regimens were off. Being stubborn and having experienced this condition before, I tried to gut it out and self-treat with exercises I remembered from years before. Unfortunately, nothing worked and I finally went to a foot specialist. I’m so glad that I did. He diagnosed that I not only had the fasciitis, but I’d also slightly torn the Achille’s tendon and the fascia. I had two plasma rich platelet treatments in that foot and spent time in a boot. Those alone were great, but I supplemented them by regular visits to an acupuncture physician. The modalities healed me and got me back on my feet without pain!
Unfortunately, my boat was not so easily treated. One of the engines blew and could not be repaired. I eventually bit the bullet and arranged financing to replace my power. (Now I just need the wind to lie down so I can actually get back out on the water and enjoy the boat again!)
The most difficult part of the year came in late summer. My darling Pyxi suffered a severe bladder infection and kidney damage. We couldn’t get her stabilized to the point where I could support her and help her maintain a good quality of life. She was wasting away and, in late September, we opted to take the humane action and help her go over the rainbow bridge. I still miss that sweet face and her quirky personality but her brother Nat and I are soldiering on.
My weight loss stalled and seesawed some over the year. With my foot injury, I was unable to work out, which only made things worse. I struggled with my eating disorder and food compulsions off and on. I stabilized soon after Pyxi’s death. This was helped by me getting involved in a terrific new-to-me exercise routine – rowing! I’m committed to this overall workout with its cardio benefits and strength training. Although my weight is pretty much the same, I’m transforming on the inside with more muscle and less fat. Mentally and emotionally, I also feel stronger. Each day that I successfully resist my eating disorder and take care of myself the way that I need to, is another building block on the foundation of a healthy, sane life of recovery.
I finished the year with a vacation with family and friends. The greatest gifts are not the ones wrapped in holiday paper. The love and support of these people is the most valuable thing imaginable and I am so grateful!
The last remaining hours of 2015 are ticking away and I’m looking forward to what I’d like to experience and achieve in 2016. I don’t make resolutions, but I have goals. I want to continue to take care of myself, break through the current weight loss plateau and achieve more physical recovery. I want to stay on track with my program and avoid any relapses into old, harmful, compulsive eating behavior.
I want to enjoy some wonderful trips. Particularly in the last four years, I’ve rekindled a deep love of travel and adventurous spirit. There are many experiences out there waiting for me to go and try them. I can’t wait!
Tai Chi continues to be important to me, and I will remain on my path of study and practice.
There are some fix-up projects at the house that I want to get done. I’ve put some of them off and they really deserve my attention and energy now.
Above all, I want to live a good, happy, authentic life. I want to be kinder – to myself as well as to others. I don’t want to take anything for granted, but seek to live in the moment with gratitude and full appreciation of my gifts and blessings.
I choose to do all within my power to make 2016 an amazing year!
Thank you, everyone for being here. I wish you all the best and hope that 2016 is an amazing year for each of you, too!