I guess it’s time for the obligatory 2006 wrap-up post…
As a year, 2006 was kind of a personal rollercoaster, but I suppose most years are. Here’s a break-down of the good and bad highlights that leap to mind. Or at least the ones that I’d post about in a public blog. I’m sure that I’m forgetting some highlights, but at least it’s a start. If I think of more, I’ll add them later for posterity.
GOOD: Alexander! On March 28th, Alex was born and changed our lives forever. Every day with him has been an adventure. It’s amazing to watch this kid growing, learning, and developing into a sweet little human being. He really is an incredibly great kid.
BAD: Alexander’s operation. At just a few weeks old, Alex needed surgery. We spent a long awful night at Mass General, with just one cot for Liz and I to share, sleeping in shifts. That, and subsequent tests, have been the hardest part of parenting for me. Seeing my son in such discomfort was really rough.
GOOD: Alex’s Health. Despite early worries and aside from the above-mentioned surgery, Alex was a very healthy little boy in 2006. Hardly more than a sniffle. Liz and I were also fairly healthy, with nothing more serious than an occasional cold or stomach bug.
BAD: financial stress. For various reasons, 2006 was a difficult year for us financially. We barely managed to hold things together and keep ourselves fed, clothed, sheltered, daycare paid for, and bill collectors off our back. There wasn’t room for anything else. This was not a year for disposable income. I hate living so close to the edge, especially with a child to care for. It stresses me out. A lot.
GOOD: we have a financial plan, and barring major catastrophe, we should be in very good shape and relatively debt-free in just a few years.
BAD: My Aunt Leisa lost her struggle with cancer in December. She was good person with a great sense of humor, and will be deeply missed by her family and many friends.
GOOD: Many of our friends joined us in parenthood over the past year. Liza and Jill, Katrina and Ken (on the same day as our baby was born!), Meryl and Gary, Tex and Beth, Carrie and Dave, Dan and Kathy, and that’s just naming a few. 2006 was apparently the year for pumping out babies. Crazy!
BAD: On Christmas eve, our sweet cat Kali passed away. He was a really beautiful, loving, and good-natured little guy. I still can’t believe that he’s gone. We really miss him.
GOOD: Liz started a cool new job doing very interesting stuff for an organization that seems to really appreciate her. It looks like it’s going to be rewarding for her on lots of different levels. And if that wasn’t enough, this organization actually HELPS people!
GOOD: Career development. My job has been slowly evolving, with increased responsibilities and challenges. By rising to meet them, I think I’ve laid the groundwork for good things to happen in 2007. Only time will tell, but signs and portents indicate positive change.
So like I said… ups and downs. I often get frustrated and fixate on the bad, but really 2006 carried more than it’s share of blessings for our family. Losses too, certainly, but I suppose that’s part of living. Really, most of the “Bad” above (with the exception of the passing of loved ones) could have been so much worse. At the end of the year, I have an amazing wife and child. We have enough food, clothing, and shelter. We have our health. We have bright prospects for the future. All blessings, for which I'm profoundly thankful.
So bring on 2007 already.