Monday, December 31, 2012

Reflecting on 2012

It's time to reflect on 2012, and oh my, has a lot gone on.

When the year started, we were happily content in Sierra Vista, Arizona. We had no idea this year would go the way it had. I was midway through my eighth year at Buena and taking part in all things Common Core. Whew that was a big task! February came and went, but then March the world went topsy turvy. Mike's job became a question, and we decided that the annual stress of "will the contract be renewed" wasn't worth it any longer. So, we decided to move. This secret was one that we held close to us for the next four months. He got a job in California, and received confirmation the day after school got out. I searched for a job, but it's not that easy when you live out of state. I was lucky, though, and my current school agreed to interview me over the phone and then again, when I arrived in California. We thought about buying a house, and then renting a house, but when we discovered it would less expensive to buy, we found the perfect house online. I sent my aunt to check it out, and when she said it was nice (the model), we put in an offer. We bought a house sight unseen. A lot of people said that was crazy, but nothing we do is ever conventional. LOL! (We laugh now). Anyway, we moved in July, I secured my job, and we unpacked. With all of this stress came a few trips to the doctor...hives, hair falling out, lump in throat, etc. After all proper screening was done, we established I was healthy, just under a lot of stress. Oh well.

My school year started, an hour from my house. My children started their new school, and my husband started his job. All was going kind of as planned. Then the other shoe dropped. Mike hated his job, so, about two weeks ago, we decided that he was going to quit and go back to school. He wants to be a high school history teacher. This means that he's going to be a stay at home dad, full time student, and we will live off of my salary. As always, we are going to make it work. After all, we've been through worse...war, two reconstructive kidney surgeries, living in multiple states, etc. We will make it.

That being said, 2012 was an adventure. Good has come from it all. We are back in California with our family. Back where it all started, though, we are two hours north of our parents and home towns. Our kids in a top rated school in the state, and loving it. Our daughter was just accepted into GATE, which we've been waiting on since we came here, and our son is thriving in the new environment. They have even made quite a few friends. I'm enjoying my job and getting used to the drive. And my husband is finally happy.

For 2013, I look forward to a calmer year...I hope. I do have goals of writing, editing, possibly publishing. I haven't given up on that, but as you can see, I've been a little busy.

I hope you all had a wonderful year, and I wish you an even better one ahead of us.

Happy New Year! Let's ring it in with a smile!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Handling and Overcoming Stress

This last nine months have been stressful, to say the least. For those of you who don't know, my husband and I decided to move from Arizona to California last March. This meant finding new jobs, deciding where to live, buying a house, renting out our old house, and so much more. We made the move in July, but two weeks prior, I thought I had had enough. So much so that I broke out into hives (from head to toe). This was an extremely new concept for me. Anyway, they didn't last long, and we made the move to Northern California. My first Friday in town, I interviewed for my current job and crossed that task off the list. My husband had already nailed down his career change before we left.

Some might say, "be thankful for a job." I am, believe me; however, after 13 years of commuting less than 10 minutes to school, my new job is no less than an hour from my house. That took some adjusting. My kids started their new school, and love it. Of course, making new friends, learning new procedures, teachers, etc. took its toll on them as well, but they, too, have made the most of it. My husband is also settling into his new career nicely as well.

Anyway, now we are at the holidays. I really thought I had it all under control, but last month, the hives came back and my hair started falling out (I'm totally healthy - I had a blood workup after that). Everyone keeps saying the same thing..."take something off your plate." After a second bout of hives, I decided that their advice might be right. I am taking a break from teaching online and focusing on my full time job, teaching and being a mom. But even then, comes stress. In order to hold onto my CA teaching certificate, I needed to take the CBEST. Well, I took it yesterday and passed. I already feel a little bit better. I'm done Christmas shopping, and today I plan on tackling wrapping. We aren't spending Christmas at our house this year, so I don't have to worry about making it immaculate. There won't be any grocery shopping for Christmas dinner or Christmas Eve. All I need to worry about packing and driving to the inlaws. I'm taking it one day at a time. I only have two weeks left in the semester, and then we have two weeks off. I think I might actually survive.

As I reflect on all of this, I realize that we are never given more than we can handle, but that's a little subjective. I am overcoming all of the stress, and I'm finding ways to deal with it better. The one outlet I haven't tapped as much as I could is writing. So, that brings me to this post.

I'm not sure how many people actually read my blog, or what they are getting out of it, but I like to think that my blog is a sign that I'm not only human, but I'm normal. I can't be the only person in the universe who has had to deal with stressful times, and I'm not the only one who has overcome it. I hope that anyone who reads this particular post find comfort knowing that no one is perfect, and we will all make it through this thing called life.

Have a great week, if I don't get on here again til the weekend.

J

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Writer Hardship

It's taken me a year to attempt getting back into writing. I'm not sure why I haven't found my motivation, but it's not totally coming. So here's some background...

Last year I burnt out on seeking representation pretty hard. It was one of those moments of if I don't stop right now, I might say a bunch of stuff that will burn every bridge built and not built. I was angry. I was angry that there were authors getting requests and offers every day. It's not that I wasn't getting requests, because I was, but I never received any feedback at all. It was all too much. The one thing that kept me going was that I knew I wasn't the only one going through this. I wasn't alone, yet I was. I had writer "friends" going through the same thing, but they were online. No one in my physical world had any idea or understanding of what I was going through. For whatever reason, I chose not to share with anyone that I was writing, and being rejected. I was ashamed. By March, it became too much. I thought I would feel better and want to write once summer arrived, but it didn't (most likely because I was moving). Then I figured I would start writing once I got settled in. I tried, I really did, but now I sit down and am blocked.

Maybe I should write something new, but then what would that be?

Inspire me. I want to write.