Ah yes, time for the obligatory post about the past 12 months and how wonderful/awful they’ve been.  It seems that everyone tries to do something like this every year as January 1st looms ever closer, but as I sit down and think about everything that’s gone on over the past year, I can see why.  It’s nice to think back on everything and know that you can’t change it, so it doesn’t matter how good or bad it was, you can look at it with a unique perspective and see how the ripples of your actions have grown over time.  At least one thing in life is constant, and that’s time. It moves forward at the same speed no matter what it is you’re doing, but experiences can make you perceive it differently.  There were times that the days seemed to fly by faster than I could enjoy them, and days that crawled by agonizingly slowly, taunting me with each passing moment.

For the first 5 months of the year Keith and I were struggling through the process of building our first home.  We learned that people weren’t exaggerating when they always say that buying a home is one of the most stressful things you’ll do in life – and if you add to that the process of buying and then building it, you can just imagine where we were at for the 5 and a half months we dealt with it.  But it was during those times that I knew how much we really do belong together.  We fought more in those months than we had in the years of being together combined, but we always managed to come through it for the better.  Neither one of us would “win”, we just came to understand that the arguments were useless.  In the middle of such a hard time we didn’t need to be getting angry with each other, we needed to focus that attention elsewhere.  And in the end, doing so got the house built and us moved into it together.  And we’ve been making the house into a home ever since.  It’s amazing.

Right in the middle of moving my job made some major changes and the company began a massive project that would change the way everyone uses computers on a daily basis.  It has been a nightmare ever since.  Nobody will admit that the project was a mistake and that it’s failing miserably, and the users are suffering only slightly more than those of us in IT that are having to hear about it and try to fix it all.  The executives that made the decision have seen the problems and made sure they don’t get switched over to the new system, but they refuse to admit that it is not working out the way they’d planned for everyone else; admitting this would be admitting a mistake and they’d rather let the company and employees suffer rather than do that.  This has been a life lesson for me though, one I intend to take to heart and remember – there’s nothing wrong with making mistakes, but you have to be willing to admit them, learn from them, and move past them.  Acting like it never happened doesn’t make anything better.

I have spent more time with Keith’s parents this year than in past years, partially due to us living so much closer now.  They come visit us sometimes, but mostly we drive out to visit them and there is not a drop of complaint coming from me when stating that.  They’ve been nothing but amazing to me since first meeting me, but this past year has only shown it more.  They came to the house when we first moved in, though hesitant about the big step we’d taken together, and helped us hang ceiling fans.  Keith has pointed out to me that even his stoic father has come to care for me in his own way, a man that I feared meeting from the very beginning.  I was worried he’d hate me or never want to see me, but from the first time they invited me over he’s been awesome.  I research things about sports sometimes before going over to their house just so I can sit and talk to him while he watches whatever game happens to be on, usually prompting curious looks from Keith as though I’ve sprouted wings and a tail.  I don’t care for sports one bit, but his dad does and I’ll take whatever opportunities I can to try and bond.  Not that I have to luckily, but I still try.  He refers to us as “the boys” when asking about when we’re coming out next or what we’re up to, and that gives me warm fuzzies.  I called his mom to wish her a happy birthday just last week and she told me she loved me, catching me off guard and almost making me cry.  Keith swears she’s said it to me before, but I only remember her saying it to us as a pair when we were leaving to head home after a visit, never directly to me.  Maybe she has and I just don’t remember it, but hearing it from her over the phone made me really realize that they do care about me and that’s all I ever wanted from them.  The fact that they are so much fun to hang out with only makes it better.  My in-laws (as it were) are just wonderful.

As the year is closing I know that next year won’t bring about any drastic differences, but I’m ready for it all the same.  I make no big promises of change to come, or bid adieu to 2011 with rampant joy that it’s over with.  Time isn’t the enemy, it’s what you do with it that can cause frustrations.  I plan no big feats for this coming 12 months, but I do plan to make the most of them and have some fun along the way.  🙂