Friday, December 17, 2010

{ holiday memorandum } ~ austin area photographer

A few local radio shows have been reading their Christmas Letters on air lately and I felt compelled to write my own after listening to others recount their year of 2010. It was a big year of change and personal growth for me and I'd like to document it somehow, as I intend to do with more things in life and eventually compile a few books (so I am always saying....).

Friends, family, complete strangers, all of you readers mean a great deal to me and I share this letter with you because I hope that through my year you will find something to connect to, be encouraged by, feel moved, perhaps even inspired...a girl can hope.

2010 was a year that began with a heartbreak, my own. Though few knew, I rang in the new year with a giant crush that kind of crushed me. It was like the drama of high school that I never had. One I am grateful to say I moved beyond and learned a valuable lesson(s) from. Beginning the year in that manner inspired me to go on a cleanse and really meditate to achieve direction and purpose myself toward my goals. I am so thankful for the kick off of 2010, because it launched me into a year of exploration.

{ so long 2010 }

The first few months of this year were some of the best times in my life. In February I learned my heart could love and trust again, and my feet were swept right out from under me. At the same time I was falling in love, I was also making a connection with someone who would become one of the most important people in my life, the best friend I never thought I would find in Austin. Sunny, I love you and without you by my side this year would have been absolute misery. You really are a sunshine in my world! Your friendship carried me through the hurt and confusion of my relationship ending after such a brief but amazing time, thank you for the comic relief and voice of reason you were when I was all a muddle of emotion. Miss me while you are in Tahoe.

Spring brought changes in my job and what I thought was a big workload literally doubled and those few months and my summer were a blur of pure retail monotony. I was very excited about where I thought things were going, but that was a surprise I wasn't ready for and at the end of summer I was faced with searching for a new direction in my career path. The timing seemed to be right and I still believe it was, for all things happen when they are supposed to and reaction is key to a positive outcome. When I realized I was jobless and all the promising leads fell through, I formed a plan, carried it out with determination, and avoided eviction. I became a bartender and that has been my fall.

Through all this I took much criticism and have felt abandoned by some who once promised they would always be there for me, yet I learned my own strength, my drive to be a good mother and provide as much as I can, I learned to never give in and never stop believing in my dreams. Finding encouragement in books, friends, and even trials, I've changed for the better this year. I am more realistic, have thicker skin, I'm not afraid to be me, and not afraid to stand up. My dreams are more alive, I have a greater passion for life, my heart is more open, and I want to explore everything unknown. There are days when I feel like such a goof ball for the things I am curious about, but I see life as this adventure that I get to embark on and I want to squeeze every ounce of good from it. I want to be a lush for the circadian beauties that surround me.

Which brings me to my three biggest blessings in life, my girls.

Though my job as a bartender has it's drawbacks, it also has it's extreme perks. One thing I love is that I now have at least 2 full days a week with my girls and NO take-home-work that I have to get done on my days off. I just get to enjoy my girls. We have been to a few movies, gone hiking, taken pictures, gone out for treats, played dress up, had dance parties, found our favorite YouTube videos and quoted them into the ground...and more. These girls are the most incredible kids I've ever met and that's totally with my Mama-bias aside, they really are amazing. My girls are all caring and affectionate, fun and imaginative, witty and humorous. I consider myself a lucky person just to know them, and I am awed that I am their mother. They are my reason for everything.

Avery is in 6th grade and loving middle school. She is open and honest, we talk about awkward, funny, sensitive, and even gross things, we have trust. She is a creative girl with an interest in the world of drama. Hopefully she will grow out of her desire to live among piles of clothes and general squalor, I think I was once known for such messiness so there is a ray of light.

Masyn is in 1st grade, a gold star student. Continually she amazes me with her deep concentration and ambition to do well. She has been making new friends this year and each one she sees almost as a sister. I can't explain her warm nature because she wants to wear shorts and flip flops all year, but I do know where she gets that desire.

Evelyn is in Pre-School and she is learning letters and can write her full name! Evelyn has mastered the Voice Memo app on my iPhone and left me some brilliant gems that I treasure and listen to at least once week. The making up songs and snuggling are like reliving my own early years, I hope she always has this much affection in her life. I also hope there is someone out there who will understand her need for a comfy bed, lots of perfume, and extreme amounts of snuggling....because I know those people are hard to find.

As the last couple weeks of this year come into being, I'm forming my resolve and setting my gaze toward the year ahead and how I what grab hold of this life and drive it full speed.


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