Let's be real, 2011. There's no two ways about it-- you've sort of been a bitch. I'm actually kind of impressed and fascinated by the level of "shitty" you have achieved! Oh, don't misunderstand-- you've had some really good moments too. I've had some good times with friends, fun adventures with the kids, and been truly impressed with the way a community can activate to help and support one of its own. So it wasn't a complete loss, but man, it got close.
Ladies and Gentlemen, 2011: A tragedy
1. In February, I had to leave a job with a family that I love, because the father had fewer hours at work and was going to be home much more. Thus, he could get the girls off to school himself. While I still saw them occasionally, it was with much less frequency. (On the positive side, I got to start that job again this November! I didn't know that would happen in February, of course, so it still sucked-- but I'm very glad to be back!)
2. In April, my wonderful boss (Clover and Neptune's mother) was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. She began intensive chemotherapy treatments in May, and had a stem cell transplant in September. It was a long, hard path for everyone-- her especially, of course-- and I'm so delighted that she is cancer free and slowly recovering from her treatments. She won't feel at 100% for months and months yet, but she has kicked cancer's ass quite thoroughly, and we're all thrilled.
3. My parents, who would have been married 31 years, had their divorced finalised in June. No surprise, of course-- they'd been separated for a year, and divorce proceedings were, well, proceeding. But still sad, of course.
4. Just as A was finally bouncing back from her stem cell transplant, my grandmother was hospitalised and diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. This was a tough blow-- we had always been close, and I have many fond memories for summers and Christmases spent at her home in Montana. She and my grandfather visited us wherever we lived, and she was one of the kindest, most generous people I have ever known. She passed away on December 20th, at the age of 91.
I'm starting 2012 with the fervent (and desperate?) belief and hope that it will be a good, joyful, successful year for us all.
Welcome to a new beginning!