see ya later, 2016

Today is my Jan 1. More than ready for a fresh start, I decided that I have full authority to start a new year earlier than what might be expected. I'm ready to put 2016, and all of the ups and downs (mostly downs), behind me. After the losses that occurred in 2015, I thought 2016 was the year of me. But those who have been privy to fertility treatment can understand when I say, 2015's resolution, to "do me", fell short when what I really did, was become a slave to this journey. So with great fondness I say, see ya later 2016, and welcome to the year of taking care of myself.

I decided to seek counseling in helping me cope with what's happened in this journey thus far, and help me to devise means by which I can handle future obstacles. I fell in love with this therapist -- she didn't sit there with a notepad and let me talk... she asked me questions and together we had a conversation. It was really nice to speak to someone removed from my journey, someone who can be so honest and frank with me... and blunt she was. Almost everything that she said resonated with me, but one comment sticks out in particular, especially as I say goodbye to 2016. Fertility is a part of my proverbial life pie. For me, this past year, this aspect of the pie was a great majority, more than 6/8 of the slices of my personal pie have been dominated by this journey. She pointed out that this is an important piece of my life, but should not be the overwhelming majority... and with that, came one of my many resolutions. I am going to work on shifting my mindset with all aspects of my life, but also work on making room for different pieces of my pie to play a larger role in my life.

Fresh off the heels of Christmas: a buttery, carb filled, wine induced weekend I spent with my husband's family, I once again realize the importance of family. Though I don't see them often, all expressed condolences and interest in our journey. My sister in law gave me one of the most thoughtful gifts I'd received -- from calming tea, to plush slippers, to a Henri Bendel eye mask, to home made lavender de-stressing salts, she too reminded me of the importance of relaxing. My mother in law gave me my favorite gift - a gift card to my nail salon that lasts me 6 months -- its the gift that keeps on giving. I was also in receipt of gift cards for two massages. Clearly well thought out, my husband's side of the family touched me in ways that made me realize how much they care. Best of all, in recognition of the break I need, my husband gifted us a trip to Italy in February. Aside from the gifts, the weekend was filled with laughter (mostly because I'm apparently horrible at pictionary), and familiar familial banter. As I was saying goodbye to my husband's aunt, she hugged me and wished me a better 2017, and reminded me that we are so deserving of a better year.

After the November loss, my body decided to have some fun -- I had a sinus infection, and then one of the worst stomach viruses I've ever experienced... because WHY not? So for a multitude of reasons, today was the first day I got back into spinning. Clipping into that bike and hearing my instructor Robin's words of wisdom (today is a good day to have a good day), I was immediately reenergized. When the song "fight song" came on, about 25 minutes into the ride, I started crying. That's my thing lately -- crying at random times. I guess this is all a part of the healing process. But it was cleansing, and I felt so great when I got off the bike. All the days I spent crying in bed are now a part of my past, and days spent doing things that make me feel great about myself, are what lay ahead.

My therapist made a very accurate point about my persona; I AM A CONTROL FREAK. I line up my books in size order, I organize my email box too often, I have anxiety on planes because I never understand what's happening, and I chose a profession where I am almost always in control. This journey has obviously been crushing for a multitude of reasons, but I am starting to realize a lot of the fear and anxiety are attached to the fact that this is not a scenario I can control. A new year represents the ability for a fresh start, and while my resolution list is long, shifting my mindset, as mentioned, is of top importance, and of course, accepting the fact that this journey is bigger than anything I can control... and I need to focus on what makes me happy, and continue to hope for the best.

So, 2016, you sucked, aside from the fact that both of my brothers married incredible girls I can now call sisters. But 2016, I bid you and your heartache adieu. I accept the challenges you threw my way; I thank you for making me stronger... but I look forward to a better, happier & healthier relationship with 2017.

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