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Monday, December 20, 2010

Countdown to 2011

Believe it or not we are almost at the end of 2010. This is always the time when I like to take stock of things. How far have I come since 2009? What did this year bring? What do I think/hope/wish next year will bring?

I feel that 2010 was definitely better than 2009 which involved me working at a job I despised and uncomfortably pregnant with Little A until April when Little A was born and then I was pretty miserable for the rest of the year, suffering from postpartum anxiety and depression. The beginning of 2010 things improved significantly when I began school and they improved even more in May when my mat leave ended and Little A moved from being a baby to a toddler (whenever Adam and I see anyone with a small baby now, we feel like high-fiving each other just knowing we will never have to go through that first year again!) and I finally felt like I got some semblance of a life back.

Of course, 2010 has not been without its ups and downs. The biggest ones have been trying to manage parenthood and establish more functional parenting practices, particularly with Big A, along with trying not to get discouraged about my career situation. But on both these fronts, I'm feeling pretty optimistic right now. Things with Big A have definitely improved and my career seems to be moving forward in small, baby steps. [As an aside, the Chair of the Mt Sinai ethics board has requested a personal meeting with myself and Dr. M to discuss our research proposal. We are both puzzled by this request, which we find rather disconcerting, but are meeting with him tomorrow to find out what the issue is. Hopefully this meeting will at least determine whether or not our project is going to go ahead]. Still no word from anybody on whether I have a place to do my practicum, but at least I have contacted all the big players and it is under consideration.

I'm feeling pretty good about my lifestyle, so no resolutions in this area. My cardio has improved because of my regular use of my heart rate monitor and I'm doing some pretty tough workouts 4 days a week, and my strength is slowly improving, although I haven't made any more progress with my chin-ups. I am diligently doing all my core exercises to assist with rehabilitation of my pelvis and hamstring and things have definitely improved. I still have bad days, but even then, the pain isn't nearly as bad as it was prior to starting physiotherapy and my therapist is confident that we will soon be able to go down from weekly to biweekly sessions.

Since the "cleanse" I have been more conscious/careful about sodium and I have tried to get my protein from fish, eggs and beans more often and from meat and processed soy products less often (but I still love my veggie sausages!!) so I am comfortable with the state of my diet for the time being.

But I do have a few outstanding, albeit minor, health issues that I want dealt with in 2011. The first is with my feet. I thought that improving my biomechanics by fixing my pelvis would help improve the weight imbalances I have in my feet, but this has not been the case. I continue to be plagued with serious, recurrent blisters and sore, swollen toes from the problems with my gait. Not even double-socking, band aids, moleskin or vaseline helps very much. So tomorrow I have an appointment with the podiatrist that I saw when my foot problems developed during my pregnancy with Little A. I am really hoping he can help me because despite the discomfort, giving up physical activity IS NOT AN OPTION!

The other health issue I want addressed has to do with my eyes. In the past year, I have had 5 eye infections! I am particularly prone because I have very dry eyes...so dry it affects my vision...and because I wear soft, disposable contact lenses. I refuse to go back to wearing glasses because I look stupid in them but the situation is getting bad. I have actually booked laser surgery for myself twice...and then chickened out at the last minute both times. So finally, I've decided to see my eye doctor, whom I have not seen in well over a year, and get her take on things. If she thinks the surgery is a good idea, I think I will do it...at least I think I will.

So all things considered, I feel like life is moving in the right direction and while 2011 is bound to have some challenges, there are also bound to be some exciting developments. I don't routinely make resolutions, but I do have a few this year:

1. Resolve my foot/eye problems if possible

2. Stay positive about my career

3. Hug and kiss Big A more

I know the third one sounds strange but hear me out. I read over a lot of my blog entries from the past year and was reminded of all the times when physical affection diffused her tantrums or moodiness. Also, lately she seems to really be craving physical affection. The reality is, because we carry Little A around, we naturally give her more hugs and kisses because we are holding her in our arms. And Big A has noticed this. She is ALWAYS asking me if she can have a hug or kiss, but most of the time it's when I'm rushing by her trying to: (1) throw in laundry, (2) get the girls' breakfast ready, (3) make dinner, etc. So I am often telling her, "In a minute..." but then that minute never comes. If Adam throws Little A in the air, she wants to be thrown in the air. If I pull Little A on my lap to dry her off in her towel after the bath, Big A wants me to do the same thing with her. At first Adam and I were getting very frustrated with this, feeling like she just wants to be treated like a baby as older siblings often do when the younger one is getting more attention. But I have realized that whether or not this is the case, no one, in my opinion, can ever give their children too many hugs and kisses. So I am vowing to try and put down the laundry basket and give Big A all the hugs and kisses she wants in 2011.

What are your resolutions for 2011?