Thursday, January 2, 2014

Looking Back 2013

Ah, the fresh start is on its way...

Yesterday I made it back from my December hiatus. Yes, I'm a few days late when it comes to when you are "supposed to" look back on the previous year and look forward to the next, but I don't see that a day or two makes a difference.

Today I read through my posts from 2013, which took me quite a while - I wrote 160 times last year, blowing out my goal of every third day. Were they all fantastic? Um, no. But I did have some that I really felt proud of.

We said goodbye to Madison's hematologist.

We were snowbound for three days with three feet of snow and I shared some of what we did to stave off cabin fever.

I got overconfident and had a huge Pinterest fail trying to dye Easter eggs.

I had my 100th post and reflected on why I started writing to begin with.

I was jealous of Madison after a day of clothes shopping.

I met the most condescending mom in the world.

I forced Madison into swimming lessons and then Adam tried taking both girls to the pool alone.

I shared a very emotional piece (that was picked up by multiple sites) about losing Reagan's twin.

I realized that our need to compare means that sometimes Facebook is the enemy.

Madison cast us in all her favorite movies and I thought my role (and Reagan's role) was very telling.

I had some thoughts about secrets that moms keep.

2013 was a year of two toddlers and the end of the baby days. I think that when I look back on the girls combined, I experienced every toddler behavior, from the early phases to the late ones over the course of the year.

2013 was a year of incredible growth for me as a writer. I was published on other sites, bigger sites, and offered incredible opportunities. I attended a conference where I learned how to work with companies and brands, and how to successfully align myself. I created a logo and grew my online presence on social media from 50 to 650+ Facebook fans (not including "pages" who don't count). Whether or not Facebook is blogger friendly (it isn't), that kind of growth is something I am proud of.

2013 was the year I found my blogging tribe, which allowed me to gain confidence and enable growth. Much like the support I receive from my online mom's groups, they answered my questions, respected my contributions to conversation, and gave me a sounding board.

2013 was the year I made my transition from teacher to stay at home mom official and permanent. I gave official notice, registered Madison for preschool, and started the school year as a mom, not a a teacher.

Those are some big things. I can't imagine that 2014 will top it, but I've already got a few things in the works.

As for last year's resolutions...well, I can't say I had huge success. I invested time and effort in my blog, and I refused to make excuses, but I still wasn't great at reclaiming my body, time for myself, or the effort to make sure I was as taken care of as the rest of the family.

But I read a wonderful piece from one of my tribe (seriously, she wins the award for most amazing cheerleader for all of us) about moms, particularly moms of young children, getting "exemption" from resolution makings. The children and their needs are constantly changing, thus their roles as mothers are constantly changing, and there's not much we can resolve to do but adapt.

And that feels like a pass to me.

Of course, I still have some goals, and I'll share them tomorrow. Because a 50% success rate is something I think I can top!
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