It's probably a little early for the year-end tally of events that have defined 2011 for me, but the song that this title is from, "Season of Love" from the musical RENT has been bouncing around in my head for awhile, so I figured I'd get in early on wrapping up the year that was 2011.
For those that know me well and are in regular contact with me, electronically or otherwise, know that I have plenty to bitch and moan about from 2011, but bitching and moaning never accomplishes anything except leading to more bitching and moaning, so I'm not going to do that.
Here, in no particular order, are the top 10 things I'm grateful for from 2011:
1) Finishing grad school & actually graduating.
2) Finding a job I love in a field that I love; it's so true that when you love what you do for a living, you'll never work a day in your life. I know that feeling for the first time ever.
3) My skin cancer was "only" basal cell carcinoma. On Monday of this week my dermatologist took another biopsy of something on my back and he was not reassuring when he told me his initial impressions. His office called today saying the pathology was benign. I can't remember the last time I felt such a sense of relief.
4) Outside of my own cancer scare, there were no major tragedies, (outside of the issue with my husband, which I'll get to later) medical emergencies, or deaths in my family. My maternal grandparents are around for another Christmas, which, at their ages is pushing the life-expectancy envelope. And I'm thankful for that.
5) Going to the Super Bowl in February & watching the Packers win it all. This is not on the list purely for football reasons; traveling to North Texas and staying at the Great Wolf Lodge was one of the best experiences I've ever had with my family & the entire group from Packers Fan Tours which came to feel like family.
6) I fall more in love with Apollo everyday. Of course I love Angel too, but my relationship with my dogs has always been closer than with my cats. There were times during the past year where I thought I'd never feel about Apollo the way I felt about Peanut & I was right: I don't feel the same way about Apollo as I did about Peanut, but that's pretty normal and it's ok. Parents love all their children, at least good parents do, but it's ok to love them in different ways.
7) My husband has been sober since July 28, 2011. This was not an easy year for our marriage, and that's putting it incredibly kindly. However, I married a man of integrity and I knew he was buried in there somewhere. That man is showing more and more of himself. The wounds of the last couple of years will not heal overnight, but they will heal. They've already begun healing.
8) I'm one more class closer to being able to begin my internship as a Substance Abuse Counselor; 2 down, 3 to go. I'm very excited about my professional signature being: Kristine K. Sack, LPC-IT, SAC-IT, and eventually Kristine K. Sack, LPC, SAC. And from there it will be Dr. Kristine K. Sack, PhD, LPC, SAC.
9) Spending Labor Day Weekend with some of the most kick-ass chicks I know (minus 2).
10) My friends, both local and far away, who have supported me, loved me, let me cry when I needed to and kicked my ass when I needed them to.
How do you measure a year? How about love?