Sorry to break up the book discussion, but I just wanted to talk a little bit about years.
Years seem to have themes for me. I started noticing this in 2008, but I've realized that the trend goes back much farther than that.
2008 is what I refer to as "The year of depression." Because that's pretty much what I experienced for the entire year. After a huge disappointment earlier in the year that lingered for about 6 months, I then experienced a miscarriage in October that took me out for the rest of the year.
2009 is "The year of illness." I'm counting a bit of December, 2008 in this, when I was in the ER 4 times for kidney stones. Then I had several illnesses throughout the winter and early spring as a consequence of all the ER visits and medication. Then I got pregnant and became unbelievably sick for the rest of the year.
2010 was "The year of joy." I had Jane and the high didn't go away for 11 months. Jane is so wonderful and sweet and amazing and every month I was incredibly happy to have her in my life. Nothing brought me down.
Until 2011. The best way I can think to describe that year is, "The Crucible." 2011 was incredibly awful. I can't even really explain because I don't want to live through it again, but I'm still feeling a bit shell-shocked and numb. The best comparison I can think of is being ground into a fine powder, slowly and excruciatingly, over a period of 1 year, until you're nothing even close to resembling what you were before.
I was telling Michael about this in January, and he said, "You know what? 2012 is going to be the year of fun! I declare it to be the year of fun!" I am trying to not tell him that they years don't really show their true colors until it's too late, but his positivity is encouraging and when I told him that I wanted to go to Comic Con in July, he said, "Yes! You are going because this is the year of fun!" You have got to love someone like that in your life.
Pessimism notwithstanding, I am sort of getting hopeful. I think this might be a good year? Do I need to run and find some wood to knock on? I found myself today contemplating making a dinner. This is big. It has been so long since I've even felt motivated to do that, as opposed to just lethargically making food out of a sense of obligation (I do feed Jane. Most days).
Is this a sign of things to come? I hope, I hope, I hope, I hope, I hope.
Just as a note: here is my best guess at summarizing recent years:
2001: Year of Serendipity
2002: Not good
2003: One of the best years of my life
2004: "Just keep chugging"
2005: Chugging and getting better
2006: Year of Success
2007: Year of enjoying life
2008: Year of depression
2009: Year of illness
2010: Year of joy
2011: The Crucible