2009: What a year.

30 December 2009

When trying to reflect on this past year and all that has happened, it’s hard to believe that it’s only been one year.  That so much was packed into just 12 months.  There’s been so much that I’m hoping that as I try to highlight some of the things that happened this year I won’t forget too many of them!  (I won’t be able to get them in chronologically… but I’ll attempt to do my best.)

It started out in a not-so-good place. I was seeing a psychiatrist for my anxiety and depression — the majority of which was caused/provoked by my job.  However, my doctor prescribed me some great pills and they truly did help.  I had to get over my own personal stigmas regarding antidepressants and because of that I was able to start getting better.

I moved. I decided that though I did love my roommates, I needed a new place.  So I left Evanston and returned to Chicago (not all that far really — about a 10-15 minute drive).  The kittens and I packed up and found ourselves in a little garden apartment in Lakeview.  Since then I’ve gotten to pretty up the place, and I must say (when it’s clean) it looks good.

I got serious about my writing.  I’m pretty sure I started my Stanford writing course this year.  I realized that online courses are hard because I don’t have the same accountability that comes with a physical classroom.  Through that and then also attending a Summer Writers Conference at Northwestern University I was not only able to improve my craft but meet some great writers.  My friend Dani got accepted into NU and then continued on encouraging me to pursue an MFA.

I met some bloggers.  And I got really drunk.  But I found some best friends. I finally attended my first meet up — Rachel’s birthday.  It was a grand time, and I got smashed.  But from there I ended up attending the 20SB meet up, and then BlogHer (which really was more like a mini-20sb meet up).  It is truly, truly hard to believe I’ve only known these people for half a year.  They seem so fused into my life that I don’t think I spend a day without talking to/hearing from one of them — and I definitely don’t spend a day without thinking of them.

I quit my job. It was a big risk, because I didn’t have anything lined up, but it was one that needed to happen.

My mom and I got tattoos together. Yep.  Talk about some bonding.  She got a daisy on her back, and I got a hummingbird (from her Gibson Hummingbird guitar) on my ankle.

My brother got divorced. Then he eloped. And now he’s separated. Not a day goes by I don’t wish the best for my brother.  I just wish he’d wait for it to come, and not just keep settling.

My band played 3 shows. Which hey, for something I’d just joined the summer before and is still in the beginning phases, that’s pretty big.  We’ve been able to get a great group of regulars to come out to practice and perform together.  We ended the year in a good place, and I’m excited to see what’s in store for this next year.

I got to go “on tour” with my favorite band. I continued my friendships with various Mucca Pazza members and met a whole bunch more.  But that trip to Wisconsin was awesome.  Just thinking about it makes me want to hug everyone.

I met a couple of absolutely amazing musicians and sort of fell in love. What can I say, Gretta and Jack from My Gold Mask are just awesome.  I pretty much only went to their shows and MP shows this year.  And for good reason — they are AMAZING.  Both as musicians and just as stellar people.

My love came to visit me. And put on a show for the city of Chicago.  Oh Jermaine….  Can’t Flight of the Conchords take permanent residence in Chicago?  Mennogirl and I sat 5th row of the show and geeked out the entire time.

Others finally found out about my love affair with Nintendo. Brand About Town was super awesome and extended a last minute invitation for me to join them at the BlogHer Nintendo Enthusiast dinner.  It was an amazing gesture and I’m still grateful.  Then Rachel asked me to co-host a BAT Nintendo Enthusiast Wii Fit Plus Party.  And it was awesome.

I found a job that was almost too good to be true — and they hired me! I was walking by a toy store I didn’t even know was there, and saw the help wanted sign… I came back the next day and applied.  Now I work there!  It’s OMG TOYS every day.

I went on a lot of dates.  A lot. So yeah, I had ups and downs this year when it came to guys.  I got hurt, I forgave, I met more boys… and well, just dated around.  And then two days ago one of them asked me out.  So…. I’ve got a boyfriend now. (Decided that I maybe have moved too quickly… but am trusting myself in stepping back and labeling myself as single yet dating again.)

There’s still a lot more I’m sure I’m forgetting.  I don’t mean to.  There was a lot this year.  I’m still meeting wonderful new friends (both online and in person).  I’ve slacked on my writing, but won’t neglect it too long.  I’m also hoping to apply for my Masters in Zoology as well (if I can get my act together by the end of February).

2009 did indeed have its share of hardships… but overall it was just jam packed with awesomeness.  A big thanks to all of those who have been a part of it!

  • Bobby The Builder

    So looking back at it now. Was stepping back the the boyfriend a good idea?

    • He was tremendously sweet. But no matter how nice the other person is, no matter how good they treat you… You can’t force a relationship. Something just didn’t feel right. I’m sorry that it hurt him. I wish he would have been willing to fight for it more and that he stuck around. Because if nothing else, I think he would have been an amazing friend. But I guess it was all or nothing for him.

  • Ben

    Any tips you can give on overcoming medication stigma? I think I do need it, but everything about it makes me uneasy.

    • 1) Find a psychiatrist you like/trust/tolerate. They’re freaking expensive, which sucks balls and never makes it any easier to see them. But they’ll be able to help you find a medication that’ll work for you.
      2) You get to try the pills before actually getting a subscription. Of course, this means you’re starting your hit-and-miss adventure in figuring out which medication will work for you. Prescribing antidepressants isn’t an exact science. So it may take a while to find a pill that is perfect for you. I was lucky that it was my first set.
      3) They work. They truly truly work. And they don’t do that whole personality change like I thought it would. I was still me. I was just able to deal with the day and not break down all the time.
      4) More people are on them than you know. Okay, so I hate over medicating and taking pills when other things could work too… but I was shocked at how many of my friends had taken some sort of antidepressant or anti-anxiety pill. And the group mentality does sort of work, and it didn’t make me feel so bad or different to be on a mood enhancing pill.

      …. I might write more on this Ben.. I’ll keep you posted. But feel free to email me in the meantime with any more questions.

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