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Goodbye to 2016, the Year of No Fear

My year started with a celebration: 25 years of extra life. I didn’t say anything except quiet wishes to my friend (sister) who was with me one horrible night in early January. We are both thriving now, but it took a while, at least for me.

Then, I had a long flight for work, one I’d been sweating. Like Guinness, I don’t travel well and lose my bubbles. But when your boss shows confidence in you by sending you places, you say yes. Meeting with writers is fun for me. They feed you cheesecake and regale you with stories. All I have to do is get on the damn plane.

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We went to my thirtieth high school reunion in May, which was nice, low key, and I felt very fat. I thought that red dress would be roomier, but it wasn’t. More on my inexplicable weight gain from eating cookies below. %*$&%*! As you can see in the pic below, I’m half in love with my friend Di, who is mentioned in my book. She is a gifted artist and so full of the same warmth, moxie, and wisdom. Plus, she is rocking some serious braids. I wish she lived next door.

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I threw a surprise party for my darling husband, Sam. He had no idea what was coming and it blew him away. Maybe my favorite moment of the year, watching him walk in and see us. This whole marriage thing is pretty cool.img_1968

Sam–a French prof–decided it would be great to take students to Paris. Sure, you do that. Okay, so I managed to get on that plane again (thank you, Delta, for the amazing service). I went to France because when your husband turns 50 in Paris, you get on the damn plane to meet him there. We had an amazing time. The butter!!!

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I flew three more times after that. My fear of travel is now gone. It happened gradually until one travel day, as I strapped myself in the seat, I thought, “Oh this again.” No big deal. I ditched the tranquilizers and now just listen to music and knit. I’ll go anywhere. Except on a boat. Or a prop plane. Hate those.

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My childhood friend got hitched and I love her and her family. I rediscovered that warm fuzzy of seeing someone again and remembering deep bonds and memories. Here are some flowers from her big day.fullsizerender-003

This year, I rediscovered food. It’s weird, but food tastes good again after 25 years of not caring (and being thin). What happened? Were my tastebuds released from jail? Long story too long, I gained 15 pounds. I’m so startled not to fit in most of my clothes that I’ve upped my running. Love handles on me are not okay!

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Part III. August. As you get older, lifting weights becomes more important. Plus, I couldn’t open a jar of pickles, so I signed up with a trainer. On good days and bad days, M kicks my butt and I always feel better afterwards. (I’m not James Corden, btw)mgid-ao-image-mtv-com-207885It all seemed to be going okay, until…do I have to say it?

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On November 9, the fear came rushing back. The embodiment of my nightmares will be in office. How did that happen? I feel sick just seeing his face or hearing him talk–and I’m so so so angry. You can’t tell this broad to move on or accept the outcome. It runs too deep for many of us. I like that people think differently but this election was different–and not in a way that celebrates our differences.

It would be easy to stay indoors and sleep through the next four years. I’ve thought about it. What a waste, though. We can be a community of survivors, right? I will start by bidding au revoir to 2016. You’ve put us through a lot and I’m grateful for the lessons. Maybe not grateful in a gratitude way, but I get why things happened and how I can learn from them. But did you have to kill Prince, George Michael, Carrie Fisher, and David Bowie?

Sam and I are ending the year with a nasty bug that has left us bed-ridden and watching The Sopranos. We will recover from all upsets, sinus, stomach or the caustic Orange kind, and 2017 will be about badassery and La Resistance. Stay tuned.

 

Whining

6 Days Until I Can Stop Watching Television Forever

seal_of_the_president_of_the_united_states-svgThis past January, fueled by caffeine and post-flight euphoria, I promised a group of writers that I would pen 10 craft-related blog posts this year on this site. Well, kids, I’ve done this, partially on this site and partially on another–my daytime professional one. If you check my twitter posts, you will find them. Given my prolific blogging elsewhere, I figured I would burn out fast writing in two different places. You have to have separation between church and state.

Here, I will post more about my life as a person (new and different). Maybe as a writer and a wife and a New Yorker and a reader. Also a little about being a shameless seeker of cookies, Gwen Stefani/Blake Shelton updates, cheap yarn that doesn’t look cheap, and recipes I will never use. Maybe I’ll mention that I can’t turn away from election coverage and am looking forward to finally turning off the TV on 11/9.

Everything seems to have stopped until I can vote. I didn’t volunteer but I donated $$$, bought merchandise and have watched more television than is healthy. I had to procure a mouth guard from my dentist. Perhaps, there is some nervous candy bar consumption as well.  I have two 1/2 written books on hold. My normal TV watching has suffered, as in I’m no longer caught up with the Housewives or Grey’s. The apartment needs Swiffering and there are emails to answer. Stacks of puzzles to do, books to read, summer clothes to pack away, makeup to put on my face, and sweaters to bring out. And there’s my wonderful husband who, with his own insane schedule, gets take-out dinner because I am too preoccupied to shop (he does 80% of cooking). I make up for this by ironing clothes because you can do this and watch TV. That said, I do my job and make it to the gym.

For now, I’m frozen until the verdict is in. Who else is feeling this way?

Oh, and just because, I am reading two engrossing must-read books–but slowly because of TV crack-heroin-poison:

The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont

Can I Go Now? The Life of Sue Mengers, Hollywood’s First Superagent by Brian Kellow

Oh wait, never mind all of the above except for the book recommendations. I am way too privileged to complain.