Twenty-Eleven


New Year’s Day must be right around the corner judging by the high rotation of TV ads for debt consolidation and weight loss products. January must be Boxing Month for the good folks at Fitness Depot, Weight Watchers and gyms everywhere. I have been thinking of re-joining Weight Watcher for a while but I don’t want to do it in January. Smacks too much of pre-ordered failure.

(As an aside, my spell-checker is taking issue with the word “pre-order” which is leading me down a philosophical path of reflection on pre-ordering. This should be the neologism of the year, a completely made-up notion for the purpose of online marketing. Think about it. What does pre-order mean?  Before ordering. What is there before ordering? Not a whole lot. You order pizza because you want pizza. The order comes before the pizza but what comes before the order? The stomach grumble? The twinkle in the eye? Ordering is by definition an initiation of something. We only started pre-ordering stuff when Amazon thought it would be a good way of preventing potential clients from walking over to their nearest bookstore once the latest Harry Potter became available. Might as well wait for UPS, it’s been pre-ordered…)

Last year, I poached a retrospective from another blog. It’s a series of questions meant to make you go back on the year just over. They are superficial — what did you do on your birthday? — rather than life-changing but it’s very entertaining a year later. It’s like The Economist’s The World in… forecast issue. It’s always a good read when it comes out but not as much as it is a year later.

As it turned out, 2011 was The Year of the Twins. I spent the first 9 months of the year pregnant and the last 3 caring for two infants. And that sums it up! Here’s one question that makes me roll on the floor laughing:

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I was committed to losing those damned “last 10 pounds” but I put on 30 instead. I wanted to start hosting dinner parties for my adult friends, without kids. Instead I had an army of friends making me frozen dinners and bringing supper to my house. I wanted to take the children swimming and skating more often. Ha!Ha!Ha!Ha!Ha! *Wheeze* . I wanted to make more time for friends and family, instead I lost touch with people I care deeply about. I have only managed to keep close to my closest friends because they don’t take no for an answer and invite themselves over. It seems like the twins have made us even more insular than we already were.

Here’s another side-stitcher:

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Army Half Marathon. Getting out of bed at 5:00 am to run before work last spring.

ROAR! Getting out of bed at 4:45 to grab the first bus, getting off downtown and running 7.5 km at the crack of dawn in frigid weather before heading to work. It was cold, it was wet… and I have wonderful memories of it! Running will ruin your brain that way… This year, I hope to go for a walk. Once.

But I wasn’t laughing anymore when I started reflecting on this one:

13. What did you get really excited about?

We had twins and that was exciting but more like a slow burn. For sure, the birth was a lifetime high. But that must be, in my opinion, one of the saddest part of being constantly exhausted and busy: I don’t get excited about anything anymore. The grind of getting anything done gets the excitement factor out of things that should have been — or used to be — exciting. Like running my boss’ re-election campaign. Nothing is exciting anymore, it’s all in degrees of “exhausting”: somewhat, mildly, very, completely…

And maybe this will be my Twin-First-Year-Totally-Manageable-New-Year-Resolution: get excited about something. Change my outlook. Stop seeing things in degrees of exhaustion and start getting excited again! (I feel like I should add some exclamation marks here)!!!!!!!!

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