I know I already did my “looking back at shit-year” (I mean – 2011), but then I saw this meme at Pantalones del Fuego (I miss November, when we had a post a day – love this blog), and decided I can’t resist.
1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before? My own trial. That was the best. Something I had once looked at and thought “I can never do that . . . ” and then doubted why the hell I went to law school if I couldn’t handle the end-game? But then I had the trial, and it was awesome. I loved it. Cross examination (especially in a very casual venue where there had been no depositions, so I had no freaking clue what the witness was going to say!) was the scariest, and the most fun.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions and will you make more for next year? I kept some, I didn’t keep others. I am making more this year (post still to come), but am also carrying over at least one (weight loss) that I didn’t keep.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Not this year. But a baby is due in early February, and I’m excited about that.
4. Did anyone close to you die? No.
5. What places did you visit? New York City, Southbury, CT (my parents’ house – hardly counts), Jamaica, VT, Ocean City, MD, Virginia Beach, VA, Washington, D.C., Cape Cod, MA, Martha’s Vineyard, MA, Otis, MA. I think that’s it.
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011? Wow. I kind of have to come back to that. I was going to say some kind of career success, but I didn’t really lack career successes this year. No, I won’t stay at this job, but I don’t think it’s because I lacked successes. My first entry here was about a huge success, career-wise. It was thrilling and exciting and amazing. And it wasn’t the only instance. But still, my performance as a lawyer is not 100% about where I work. So, I guess, still, I will say that in 2012, I would like to have a job that I feel is a good fit. Where I can grow and learn and expand my skills and opportunities. That is what I did not have (for the most part) in 2011. (I would also like to have millions of dollars, so paying for college is not an ever-present stress. But this is about reality – not fantasy.)
7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched on your memory, and why? Sadly, 11/16 – because it was the day I was laid off. Maybe also August 27 – the day we were supposed to check into our beach house in the Outer Banks, and the day Hurricane Irene took our place. December 27 was pretty cool, because we took the girls to see Anything Goes on Broadway, and it was really amazing for all of us.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Oh, my trial was pretty cool. There were a few other work things. The play I produced was amazing. (Seriously . . . amazing.) David and I made an amazing Christmas season for our girls. Those things were good.
9. What was your biggest failure? I got fired. I didn’t read the signs clearly enough to get my ass out of there while it was still voluntary. I was lazy. There and at home. I didn’t lose my weight. I didn’t keep up with my laundry. I spent too much time on the computer – too much time watching t.v. (although, admittedly, that was only during the work freak out). Fail.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Well, other than my persistent bad foot – no. I don’t even think I had a cold. Oh – I had my first back pain of my life. When I first started running. Probably why I let myself give it less than my all for the rest of the year.
11. What was the best thing you bought? Oh my god. My iPad. I love it. More than I love myself, I think. (not really, but it is my very favorite possession). (The awesomeness was compounded by the fact that I WON !!! an iPad on the same day — so David and I both have one. Made me feel less selfish.) Second to that may be the tickets for Anything Goes. Juliette CRIED, she was so happy. She cried!
12. Where did most of your money go? That’s a tie between groceries and rent. Happy to say that the runner up is savings. Thank god.
13. What did you get really excited about? This is sad. I was so excited about my vacation. So excited. And it didn’t work out. Second runner up was the play. It was exciting, and fantastic. And it did work out.
14. Whose behavior merited celebration? My Lemon. She’s 15. She’s had a few ups and downs this year – and she’s been amazing. She has absorbed sadness and moved on. She had her first job. She learned and excelled at a new sport. She traveled alone. She’s been doing amazing with her grades —- working so very hard, and getting the pay off. She has been engaged with the family. She is fun to be with. She takes correction without explosion — I am proud.
[Mommy guilt forces me to say --- Mouse is awesome, too! I hope when she's a sophomore and tackling these same issues and changes and responsibilities I have the same to say about her. But Lemon is already dealing with increased independence and responsibility. And with that comes my delight at her making positive choices with less and less involvement from David and I.]
Runner up – my Ex. Because when he came here in August, he admitted that It Was All His Fault. (he was right.) (His behavior hasn’t stayed great, but only about money – not about our past.)
Second runner up – my Firm. Because while I don’t have a job after 2/29 (Hooray for leap year!), they’ve been really decent about it. Complementary – not making excuses, generous (hello? bonus? we can thank THEM for Anything Goes!)
15. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? Fortunately, no one who lives in my house. But!! Just to make sure that all is right with the world – the Ex! He’s a liar and a fink! Maybe also my brother and his wife – they drive me insane. If I had to read one more email about why they wouldn’t come see Mouse as the lead in her last school play – when I didn’t even ASK them to come (it was their idea), I swear, my head was going to explode.
Also, kind of, my mother. But I guess I can leave that there. Because she can be here, she can be up there in the last question — I guess it’s just a mother type of relationship. But I don’t like it. And I don’t want it with my kids in the future.
16. What song will always remind you of 2011? Anything by Elbow (but especially Bones of You). Anything by Florence + the Machine [I'm obsessed with the new album!!]. Adele. Anything Goes (Cole Porter); You’re the Top (Cole Porter); Friendship (Cole Porter).
17. Compared to next year are you –
- Happier or Sadder? I think happier? Most of the changes this year have been for the better. The job transition IS for the better – the unknown and lack of definitiveness makes it a little scary, but I right now am nothing but optmistic.
- Fatter or thinner? The same right now. But I wanted to be thinner.
- Richer or poorer? Richer. But it’s short-lived, I’m almost-certain. I think.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of? Thinking about and planning my next-steps, career-wise. Not since the news that I’m laid off, but before. Also – laundry.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Sticking my head in the sand about what was happening in my department/career/firm/development. I think (because, really — the head in the sand resulted in several months of this salary — if I end up without employment at the end, I regret it. If I work it out seamlessly, then I don’t).
20. How did you spend Christmas? In Connecticut, like I spent the vast majority of my 39 Christmases. It was a good Christmas. I’m glad we went. David wasn’t thrilled about going, beforehand, but ended up also having a good time.
21. What was your favorite TV program(s)? American Horror Story (obsessed!!); Gilmore Girls; Mad Men (almost forgot it was this year . . . )
22. What were your favorite books of the year? A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan. The Game of Thrones Books (while they have many flaws, I became obsessed — do you notice the use of this term? Obsessed? I have *that kind* of personality, apparently). The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. I think that’s all – but that’s just what I read on the Pad – there may have been a couple of hard copy pursuits (what????)
23. What were your favorite films of the year? I loved Super 8. Midnight in Paris. Another Earth. Rosemary’s Baby (yeah, really — I may or may not have seen it in the past, but when I re-watched it with Lemon and David this year, I was enthralled and thought about it for days – it also created the background for my love of American Horror Story).
24. Did you fall in love? No. I was already in love. My husband, my daughters. I hope that I fall in love this year, with a new job.
25. What did you do for your birthday in 2011? Oh, this happened during my silent period. David and I went to Martha’s Vineyard for our birthdays (I’m 12/4, he’s 12/5). We had a fantastic weekend – amazing.
26. Did you make new friends this year? Technically – no. But I’ve strengthened existing friendships. And friendships that had just started to blossom last year became real this year.
27. What did you want and get? My weekend in the Vineyard. My iPad. Housecleaners (Oh my god, that should be first. Because the life changing aspect of that is HUGE.)
28. What did you want and not get? To be thinner. A new computer – mine is dying, and I thought that my typical end-of-year-bonus would allow me a $2,000 purchase to replace it – but alas, I was fired instead. I am still fortunate enough to get a bonus, but not enough for that. I also didn’t win the lottery, and I really, really wanted to.
29. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Having the security of knowing that I had a job come 3/1/12. Winning the lottery.
30. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? Um . . . I’m 39. How to look modern enough while acknowledging my age and still complementing a less-than-perfect body?
31. What kept you sane? My house/home/family. When things felt out of control, not knowing what was going to happen on the work front, just walking into my house gave me peace.
32. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? I’m 39.
33. What political issue stirred you the most? Gay marriage; bullying of gay teens.
34. Who did you miss? My sister. Sometimes, my daughters (they’re busy, I’m busy, they need me less, I know less about their lives). My friend Abigail in California.
35. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011. This question does not mesh with my personality.