Tuesday, December 11, 2012

2012 - The Year Personally

There's a lot to talk about as far as 2012 goes, so I thought I'd break it up into a few posts. I'm going to talk about what this year has been like for me personally here, then I'll have three more wrap up posts coming in the last few weeks of the year to come...the year in gardening, the year in music and the year in books.

It's funny how every year we start off the year saying that "THIS will be the year that is perfect and the absolute best and when everything changes." That's what I said at the beginning of 2012. And now that I'm actually thinking about 2012...yeah..what a year it's been. It's been full of change and probably the biggest year of my life to date. I've caught myself saying often throughout this year "this has been the worst year ever" though. It's easy to get caught up in a current moment and to not look at the bigger picture. But when you can step back and look at the bigger picture of things, things really are so good.

The not so good of the year is mostly related to work. But there's a lot of good there too. The bad comes in with my full time job. I work for a private psychiatric hospital and it's really hard doing that. I got into this field because I want to help people and working for a private hospital it becomes all about the almighty dollar. And as a result of that, politics. People become business. Everything becomes business and everything gets tied up in tons of strings and it can make one's job so overwhelming, dreadful and just exhausting on some days.

The bright side of things is that I got my counseling license this year finally and am now completely independent in my own private practice and business is decent. Not really busy, but busy enough to where it's a decent extra little income. It's something I've worked at for literally years. At least ten years at this point since I really knew EXACTLY what I wanted to do. And it's so nice that that day is finally here and I'm where I wanted to end up professionally.

On the family front, a lot has changed. Good and bad. The bad is my dad's health. The year started with him being hospitalized again due to pancreatitis and fluid on his lungs as a result of that and then numerous repeated hospitilazitions as a result of that stay. This is all because of his alcoholism. I could rant and rave for a novel's length here, but the bottom line is, it's been stressful. And you think he would learn to take care of himself after that...when the doctor says, take care of yourself or you could die, but he hasn't. So that continues to be a daily stressor.

The good is that I'm continuing to adjust to the new way things are. Because I've moved out of my mom's house after 31 years for the first time! I finally got my own place this year. I'm renting right now with the hopes of finding a place around where I'm renting to buy a house, but I truly do love the little apartment that I have. It's everything I could want in my own place and it feels like me. It was SO much harder for me to adjust than I ever thought it would be. I knew it would be rough living on my own at first, but didn't realize how rough. There were nights when I left my mom's to go back to my own house and just felt crushed and devastated and I didn't think things would ever feel normal again. But of course, as things always do, they've become the new normal and my little home feels like home now.

The reason I moved out finally is because this is the year after 31 years of life that I finally came out to my mom as a gay man. I came out to most of my friends as well. This has been the number one stressor on me for my entire life. I've talked about it to exhaustion so I'm not going to talk about it even more on here. But yeah, let's say it was by far the hardest thing I've ever done and the best thing I've ever done. And it's changed my life infinitely for the better. I couldn't ask for a better mom, a better sister, or a better set of friends. I've had nothing but support and I thank all of you for that and my family.

I came out finally because of Matt. I met Matt a little over two years ago and we started a long distance relationship. This year, we took it to the next level and moved in together to our little apartment in Mandeville and it's been wonderful living with him every day. You may have noticed that I've been more quiet about us around here lately and that's because we've decided that we're better off as friends. I'll leave the reasons unsaid on here because they're personal, but I can tell you it's nothing bad at all and he's one of my best friends and I suspect he always will be and we're still living together, just in separate spaces now. He still makes me smile every day, just for different reasons.

So that's my year in review! I really can NOT imagine 2013 topping 2012 and frankly, I don't think I want it too! But at the same time after looking at all that happened in 2012, I'm really interested in what all waits in 2013!


Beth F said...

What a year and what a great place to be in your life. You are headed for all things good.

Amanda said...

Definitely a roller coaster of a year! Even if you're not looking for 2013 to top 2012, I'm hoping many good things come for you in the upcoming year. :) And I'm glad that you and Matt were able to stay good friends despite circumstances. :)

Debi said...

It truly is amazing all that can happen in a year, isn't it?!!

I'm not sure that 2013 will be the year when you can say goodbye to your hospital job and just have a private practice, but I hope that you continue to move closer that. And I hope your Dad finally gets his act together. And I hope you continue to remain as close to that wonderful family of yours as you are. And I hope your friends are still always there to support you (you better know that I will ALWAYS be!!!). You have such a wonderful full life, my friend, and it makes me so happy that you find such joy in it. Hope 2013 brings you even more!!!!

Daphne said...

Sending you big hugs -- what a year! But huge transformations are happening, most of them good. Sometimes big change is really hard and scary (actually... most of the time it is) but then you look back and realize it was a really good thing. I am sorry about your dad, though. Hugs.

DesLily said...

You've had a busy year! I love that you are able to be yourself at long last..and more then happy you have a mom that loves her son even if he was afraid to expect it. You have a great family Chris. And knowing "you can always come home" makes the world of difference when you find your "own home".
I hope things continue to work for you and Matt, be it friends or more then friends...I will always be grateful to him for being the reason you are who you are to everyone and don't have to hide ever again.
love you baby boy.. I hope 2013 is even better for you!

Melanie said...

wow. I've been reading your blog, it seems forever, and yet i had not realized ALL this had happened this year. You've had a crazy time of it; hope next year you have 3 times as much good and 1/3 as much bad! Sending hugs too! :)

Chris said...

Beth, I hope so! Thanks :)

Amanda, Thanks so much!! Yeah, I'm glad we've been able to as well. It makes all the difference in the world. It's been a rough adjustment, but it's been good.

Debi, I don't think it'll be the year I can say goodbye to the hospital, but like you said...hopefully I can move CLOSER to that goal!! As for my dad, I've given up on him taking care of himself, lol..I can only manage how I react to it now. Thanks for continuing to be the best friend I could ask for Debs!

Daph, You are SO right...change is really hard but most of the time it is a good thing. Wise advice my friend...wise advice :)

Pat, It does make a big difference knowing I can always go home!! I really am lucky to have the family I do..you included :) And me and Matt will always be friends...and like you, I'm forever greatful to him for helping me through one of the roughest periods of my life and helping me be the person I can be now. He held my hand both literally and symbolically throughout the way. I hope 2013 is a good one for you too Mama!

Melanie, Aw, thanks so much!! It's amazing what can happen in a year, huh? LOL...I hope you have a really good year too next year!!

Jason Gignac said...

I'm sorry things ave not been ey this year. I'm glad you're still you're positive, optimistic self in spite of it all :)

Jason Gignac said...

Wow... I promise that last horribly typed mess was not a drunk comment...

Vasilly said...

What a year you've had! I love the last line of this post. I'm pretty curious too about what's in store for us in 2013. I hope it tops 2012.

Anonymous said...

Whew, what a year indeed! Despite all the bad, I love that you still remain positive and can see all of the good that happened (and is still happening), too. Here's wishing you all the best in 2013!!!

Susan said...

Oh Chris, I'm so sorry I didn't see this post until now. I missed it in the run up to Christmas, which is always more busy than I think it will be. I'm glad you linked back to it, so I could catch up on your news about you and Matt. I'm sorry, so very sorry it didn't work out, though relieved that you can stay friends. It's so difficult to go from long-distance to living together. That's how my husband and I did it too, in the beginning. So I can hope that because this didn't work out, that for each of you something better is coming :-)

It has been quite a year for you, and I think when you eventually look back (after say 5 years perspective, even 10) you will find it was a watershed year for you. What no one ever says is how difficult they can be, it's always 'oh it's so wonderful to change', well, it's not. It's difficult and as you know now, there is always a period of readjustment. You now know that you can change, and that is a skill that you will use and rely on in your life ahead. See? It does have good in it :-) I'm so glad you made it through to this point, Chris.

Hugs, and hope, truly hope 2013 is a year of happiness for you. And more reading!