Lucky 13

An Open Letter to 2012

Dear 2012,


Where do I start?

First, I suppose I should start by saying that I never expected to be sitting at my computer blogging on New Year's Eve while I listen to people yell outside my window.

I mean, everyone knows how much I love both celebrations and new beginnings, so this night usually finds me dolled up in my trademark pinup style, toasting the evening with my standard NYE friends and bev.  Last year I got what I like to call "white girl wasted," which sure  sounds funny, but it made the next day good for nothing but taking down the Christmas decorations.

But lots of things are different this year. I vowed to make some sacrifices in 2012 and put aside some fun so I could accomplish things, for one.

I did that. And some of that sucked, but most of it was totally worth it. And I also got to do a LOT of unexpected celebrating this year . . . all year long.

Along those lines, I have the chance to finally make the legendary New Year's Day ride, which only happens once a year and I've missed 2 years in a row.  The ride will give me the chance to see everyone - I mean everyone - I cycled with from my old side of town, plus meet some new peeps. I also need to get my ass back on the bike.

As you and I both know, 2012, I can find an excuse to get dressed up and dance pretty much any night, but getting to experience the first day of a new year on my bike with some of my favorite people?

Well.  That's worth postponing the shenanigans.

2012, you have been a most incredible year.  By and large, you have been the best year of my life so far.  You brought me some amazing places, experiences and people.  I suppose you've taught me that "partying" and "celebrating" have nothing to do with beverages and bling and everything to do with your attitude and the people around you.

On the training and racing front, you saw me through a lot of great bike rides, like my second century (with a massive PR) and you brought me the cycling mentor who made that possible. You saw me complete my first crit and road races (and didn't laugh at me when I totally made an ass of myself).

You brought me a PR at the Sprint distance, where I met my goal of moving from Top 5 Athena to Top 5 Age Group. You brought me half marathon and 15k PR's.  And you brought me my 5th marathon in my 5th state, which I dubbed "El Cinco."

You also saw me incinerate my 2012 swim distance and sail by my 2012 run distance (although I was a little short on the cycling, despite all of it that I did early in the year.)

On the non-athletic side, you brought me my first term of grad school, academic awards I never anticipated, straight A's I certainly didn't expect, and a new job with an organization that really fits me.  You brought me new friends, and brought me closer to old friends, who adopted me into their families.

I know I am missing so much here, 2012; there is just so much good that you brought me.

You also brought me some really hard times. I lost a lot in 2012 (although nowhere near as much as I gained, and nowhere near as much as I lost during the "hard years.")  There were some academic and professional failures, like rejected research proposals. Although you brought me better medical insurance and the possibility that I may some day be able to retire or travel some day, you also brought me some additional burdens as I prepare for more diagnostic tests near my cancerversary.

Some people left my life that I never expected to be without, while some came into it that challenged me.  I had my share of personal rejections and  emotional stumbling blocks.
2012, you taught me so much about myself and about the people around me.

But, as wonderful as our relationship has been, it is time for you to go.

And, as much as I appreciated you, I do not mourn your passing.  I still have much to do, and the New Year - "Lucky '13" - awaits.

So I gratefully bid you adieu as I have the fortune to usher in yet another New Year - a year of more hard work, even more new experiences, and "40 good things."

I can't wait.


Your Biggest Fan

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