In retrospect, I believe that 2016 was so horribly bad for me that 2017 was actually pretty tolerable. I don’t mean to gloat, but if tonight was the finish line, I’d still have energy to go a little farther.
Considering I started the beginning of the year staring into an abyss of dark numbness, things went up from there. Not saying they stayed up, but they never dipped quite that low.
After my daughter was born, I suffered postpartum depression. I took medication that fogged my brain, but at least I could dig myself out when I found like I was falling into sadness, or irrational fears. I was able to ween myself off the medication and my work performance increased. I was generally happier.
I started working on my book again. I joined a book challenge on ChapterBuzz.com, edited and added new content to my book, I even won an award for it. By June the book had hit #1 on the website and stayed there for six months until I signed a publishing contract with Immortal Works Press. Apparent Power will be published later in 2018.
Family dynamics forced me out of a work situation I hated. While the job, flexibility, pay and the staff were amazing, I was unhappy with ONE of my bosses. My other boss was fair, consistent, and overall amazing at everything she did. She made my job feel valuable. When my daughter was sick in the hospital and my son struggled with a school arrangement (Side Rant: Why is afternoon preschool a thing for working parents?!!?) she took a temporary position. I could have found a way to make the situation work, but that one boss was enough to know it was not worth the stress. I later found out my favorite boss stayed in her new position. In this aspect, I know I made the right decision to leave when I did and I am right where I need to be.
My daughter has been admitted to the hospital three times, and a fourth we barely managed at home. She is a tiny one year old with a tiny airway. And while they cannot diagnose her with asthma, she has an reactive airway that closes every time she gets sick. I managed to keep myself together through all the hospital visits, having the first one be the worst. The moment they mentioned intubation is when I started to freak out. But she pulled through and did not need a breathing tube. I would have lost my mind. My heart hurts for my daughter. I know she is so little now and my hope is that she out grows it, but all i can think about is her not being able to play sports or struggling with her weight. I want her to still have every opportunity to be whatever she wants, without anything holding her back. A prayer of all mothers.
My son is growing like a weed. He’s so smart and such a sweet boy. He watches out for his baby sister. We have, regrettably let electronics be our babysitters in times of stress which then turned into a routine. When he goes back to school, things will change.
I aced 2 college Spanish classes and maintain a 3.88. It makes me sick knowing I am only 1/3 done with my Bachelors in English, but I am proud that I work my behind off and make good grades. I have back to back math coming up so I am sure that number might change.
Being a railraod wife is hard. It’s maybe hard being a wife in general. With the amount of stress the mister is under, I shoulder it and take on everything else so that he doesn’t have to fuss over the house, bills, kids, etc. The rule is, you wait until the 5 year mark before you quit your job. Well we are only at 4 years and here I am plugging away at home. Again, I know I am right where I am supposed to be. But faith is key, and smart financial planning. Side from the added stress of the RR, marriage in general isn’t always easy. You know when you ask old people what their secret is to a lasting marriage and they tell you “It wasn’t always easy. It takes a lot of work.” Well this year is what we’ll be referring to in thirty years when our grown children throw us our 40th wedding anniversary party. I’m glad to ring in the new year in a place that is significantly easier.
I almost forgot!!! I gained and lost 20 lbs this year!! I’m not overly proud about that, but I don’t plan to stop now that I have a handle on my life. I’ve started eating low-carb high-fat and it’s been working for me. I also looove leg day at the gym and found motivation to keep going. I just imagine someone slapping the junk food out of my hand before I can shove it in my face.
I have also reconnected with a few friends this year, held close the new ones I’ve made, said goodbye to a few others. Same with family. Miss my family so deeply. Maybe they’ll all make it for my birthday/ book release party. I hope everyone has a safe celebration this evening. Look for the good things, even if the coming year is real shitty. That’s my resolution for 2018.
Dacia M Arnold
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