Bye Bye 2013!

I’m jumping on the retrospection bandwagon!

It’s been months since I’ve blogged (more about that later) and, while 2013 has been good to me, there is a lot about the past year that I’m looking forward to moving on from. I don’t often take enough time to slow down and appreciate what I have, or properly heal from what has hurt. The end of the year is as good a time as any to start.

The lows:
– Looking back, losing my job with the Fringe was much more of a shock to my system than I thought it was at the time. The lack of stability and purpose was overwhelming at first. Thanks to the support of my family, friends, and peers, I have a positive outlook on what lies ahead.
– While there are others that certainly have more cause to complain than I do, 2013 was a rough year for my health. It seems like I barely went two weeks without being slowed down by a new ailment. My migraines got worse, I threw my back out, I had bronchitis for a month, and multiple colds. While none of this is life threatening, it certainly was demoralizing and exhausting.
– After almost a year of not even attempting to see the girls, nor paying child support, my ex-husband started court proceedings to have his arrears obliterated and be granted unsupervised access to the children. Needless to say this is a financial and emotional stress that I wasn’t expecting and that has taken me a while to wrap my brain around. We are nowhere near close to finishing these proceedings, so I am determined to approach this process in 2014 with positivity and strength.

The highs:
– I joined a gym, and ran three races (Resolution Run 5k, Race Weekend 2k, and Army Run 5k.)
– I got my first dog! Every day since we became the guardian family for Canadian Doodles’ Leo, I feel blessed. He brings me so much joy, and sloppy kisses, and warm feet.
– I watched as my family/friends Jared and Claire tie the knot in a beautiful ceremony in Montreal. My heart was very full that day.
– I spent quality time with people I love. Cottage weekends with Trevor’s friends. Major party weekend with my sis and extended family. Canada Day shenanigans with my folks. Going to my first Comic-con with my beau, sister-in-law, and girls. Watching my girls’ first ballet recital. Holiday dinners with the in-laws. Too many other wonderful times to mention.
– I was a full-on teacher this year, working with students age 8 to 18+. I have loved every second teaching musical theatre at Orleans Young Players Theatre School, grade 9 integrated arts at Blyth Academy, and both my intro and directing classes at the University of Ottawa.
– It’s been a wonderful year artistically too. I directed The Last Drop for Salamander Theatre, started writing my own play (with thanks to Emily Pearlman and Steven Lafond), and am currently working on Groupe des deux’s Pop Fiction.
– I have formed an incredible bond with some amazing people this year, one that I know will last for years to come. I feel honored and blessed to be in their lives.
– My wonderful partner in all things, Trevor, and I have made it through another year together. I am eternally grateful for the care he shows me and my girls. I love him with all my heart.

Looking ahead:
– I totally let this blog die this year, and while I’m not ready to commit to a specific schedule (or style or topic for that matter), I do want to share my writing more this year.
– Sure, I ran three races. Sure I have a gym membership. But that didn’t stop me from gaining 15 pounds this year. So, yeah. This is cliché, but I want to lose weight in 2014.
– My friend Nadine recently posted that her goals (and I’m paraphrasing) were to accept her fears and work hard to be able to achieve the level of success she knows she’s capable of. Yep. Sounds about right for me too. My identity is not tied to my job, so it’s up to me to live up to the self I aspire to be.
– I will finish this play that I have started. And I will perform on stage again. In this play. Which is a one woman show. At the 2014 Ottawa Fringe Festival. Because I’ve already paid for it, and now I’m saying it publicly, so I have to follow through.

Happy New Year!
NJ

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