Year In Review: 2015

1.What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?

I was proposed to on a dark and stormy night and I accepted!

engagement

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I probably did, but I don’t remember what they were. If I think about the most obvious resolutions I could’ve made, I definitely didn’t keep them. I was a total flake on a lot of things this year.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Anne and Gleb welcomed baby Aurora, who is gorgeous and who already has a selfie pout to die for!

4. Did anyone close to you die?

No.

5. What countries did you visit?

None, I took a huge pay cut when I switched jobs and spent a lot of the year housebound as a result.

We did have an excellent holiday in Queensland and a lovely long weekend in the Blue Mountains.

light

6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you lacked in 2015?

Good deeds, not just good intentions.

7. What dates from 2015 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

June 25th. B and I went up to a lookout after a heavy storm and he proposed and I refused to let him get down on one knee because the ground was sopping wet!

Afterwards we called all our loved ones and went home to his parents’ place and I got to see his dad in a sleeping cap, tehehe!

engage

July 21st. We went on an epic date night that culminated in a surprise Ryan Adams gig. The show was so good that I did something I’d never done before and scoured Gumtree until I found tickets for his gig the next night as well, which was just as amazing!

ryan

October 5th. We spend the morning of my birthday watching the sun rise over Waverley Cemetary, one of my favourite places.

waverly

waverly2

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

It wasn’t a really big year for achievements. I spent a lot of the year running at about 60% energy and feel like I probably spent more time stressing about what I wasn’t achieving than I did actually doing anything about it.

did pass my first psychology subject though. I’m kinda amazed I had the time and energy.

uni

9. What was your biggest failure?

Knowing there were lifestyle choices affecting my mood and productivity and not doing anything about them.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Uh, I have, count ’em, three chronic illnesses so…(interesting point my GP cheerfully told me: with that many chronic illnesses you can get all kinds of mental and diet plan rebates, so yay, I guess?)

I also fell in a hole this horse dug:

louis

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Hehe! Snoopy!

IMG_8656

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?

My bud, Stevie, who’s life changed incredibly this year on so many fronts and they handled all of it with such calm and dignity.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled?

We live in violent times. In homes, in acts of terror or war. It was hard to escape tragedy this year.

14. Where did most of your money go?

car

It’s been a long time since I’ve owned a car and apparently I have a thing for small, blue second-hand cars.

It’s been excellent for my weird work shifts and catching up on podcasts.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

The second night of Ryan Adams!

(I may have even dressed like him)

ryanII

16. What song will always remind you of 2015?

Oh god. Ok, it’s Harley and Rose by the Black Sorrows, shut up.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: (a) happier or sadder? (b) thinner or fatter? (c) richer or poorer?

(a) Probably about the same. I’m stressed, but not anxious.

(b) Fatter.

(c) Richer! Thank you new role at work!

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Celebrating the wins.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Social media. That’s probably a rant for another day, but nothing affected my mood more, negatively, than social media.

20. How did you spend Christmas?

We went to my parents’ farm with all my siblings and their husbands and kids!

21. Did you fall in love in 2015?

I didn’t, because I already loved a man.

My ideas about love changed in 2015.

It’s not about overwhelming passion all the time, it’s about kindness and being a supportive partner and making a decision together that this is something we would like to turn into a marriage. It’s a considered decision to choose a person and work to make them comfortable and secure in your life.

22. What was your favourite TV program?

It definitely was not Keeping Up With The Kardashians.

Yes, it definitely was.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

No-one. I actually reestablished a relationship recently that I thought was irretrievable and it was quite a powerful thing to do and I actually look forward to having aspects of that relationship back in my life.

How can I not like a person who refers to me as Morticia Addams?

24. What was the best book you read?

mybrill

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

Jason Isbell, hands down.

I was driving home from work at about 2:00am a few weeks ago and I heard one of his songs and had to pull over, it was so emotional.

And this never happens to me, but it turns out he’s touring soon and I got us excellent tickets.

26. What did you want and get?

A car.

A second dog.

A new job!

27. What did you want and not get?

A house. I really, really wanted to buy a house this year and it didn’t happen.

Then I wanted to rent a new house and that didn’t happen either.

2016, maybe we will move!

28. What was your favourite film of this year?

Black Mass! It ticked all my movie boxes: mob, Boston accents, scary dudes.

29. What one thing made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

B.

30. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2015?

Epic Kollection of Klothes With Kim Kardashian’s Face on Them.

31. What kept you sane? 

All of my medication? No, it was B. He’s very good at being like, “Whoa. Nope, reel it in and see how small the problem really is”.

32. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

I don’t think I had any great celebrity crushes this year, which is very unusual for me.

33. What political issue stirred you the most?

The plight of refugees.

34. Who did you miss? 

All my friends. I was really, really absent this year and I really regret not being able to spend more time with people I was super close to.     

35. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.

Drop dead weights. And never skip your meds.

36. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year

“So cover me up and know you’re enough to use me for good…”

Cover Me Up – Jason Isbell.

So I Got Fat: A Tale of Deception and Redemption-ish.

From what I can best tell, this was the last full length photo of myself that I was prepared to post online:

IMG_8475

It was about three years ago and I’d just started to put weight back on after a period of terrible anxiety where I lost kilos and kilos by being too nervous to eat anything besides two pieces of toast each morning for months. I remember taking this photo in part because I was wondering if I was too fat to wear shorts that short.

No, you goose, you were fine.

B posted this photo of me online over the weekend. He didn’t ask if it was OK to do so because he didn’t know I’d spent the last three years meticulously making sure I only posted photos from the shoulder up and heavily filtered at that.

now

When I saw it, it didn’t bother me as much as I thought it would. There were things I didn’t love about it, I don’t know what I’m doing with my face, for example, and my shorts could definitely use a good hoist but it didn’t make me cringe enough that I wanted it taken down.

I thought about who I was hiding my weight from. People who knew me three years ago, but who hadn’t seen me since, seemed to be the answer. I thought about these people and why we hadn’t seen each other since and mostly it fell into two categories: they were people I drifted from, which is fine and happens all the time and is it no way related to what either party brought to the scale, or they were people who just weren’t good for me or me for them.

So why did I care if they saw a photo and realised I gained weight? Why didn’t I care about the thoughts of the people I’ve met face-to-face in the last two years since my thyroid destroyed itself and I started eating all of the things, plus dessert?

It’s because I’ve spent years imagining what people would think if they hadn’t seen me since 2012. Those ghost voices have been echoing in my head this whole time and all of them were taunting me. All of them thought I was a bad person who deserved to be fat and mocked for it.

The people who’ve met me since only know me like this and those who’ve become friends don’t seem to care what I weigh and those who might have certainly never said anything.

So I’m only hiding from people online, who probably don’t give a shit anyway.

I’ve started to lose some of the thyroid weight. Not huge amounts, four kilos so far in total and again, some of it through stress. I’ve made peace with weighing whatever I end up weighing when we get married because it’ll take me more than a year to get to where I need to be and there’s nothing I can do about that now.

One thing that has disappeared for the most part though, is the anxiety I used to have every day about tomorrow being the day I’d start to eat healthy or exercise. That anxiety lived with me for almost a decade and spoke to me hundreds of times a day. I started and it faded and it’s stayed that way, even when I don’t have perfect days and that’s worth so much more to me than curating photos of myself so when I’m old and grey(er) I can pretend I never got fat.

So yeah. All that’s left is a funny photo of me and Delilah on the red carpet and I’m OK with that.

Tap All Over This Big World.

Tonight I rang a woman called Megan. When she looked at her phone, perhaps when it was ringing or maybe later on, she would’ve seen a number she didn’t know.

When I reached her voicemail, I was slightly startled and hung up without leaving a message. I don’t know Megan, I thought the number I dialed was for someone else, a number I have called so many times I was shocked I had made a mistake.

I had to search through the depths of my email to find the number I needed, eventually uncovering an old resume I had proofed.

I didn’t know what reaction to anticipate, but I wasn’t nervous. So many years of history with someone inevitably means you’ve experienced them all at some point.

It was, more than anything, a relief. Intense, but a relief.

I spent seven years of my life with a person and it didn’t work out and neither of us were grown up enough to be able to make it work and when it ended, it did so with a bang, not a whimper.

There was an easy, familiar shorthand still there, a little patchy, some details fuzzy, but it was there.

He climbed a literal mountain and figured some stuff out, climbed back down and started to work on being happy. Being a better person, to himself and to others.

And I cried when he told me this, because when it went so wrong, it hurt because every time I looked at him, there was a small part there that was a confused, sweet kid, not a bad guy doing all of this on purpose and because I was so combative and determined to salvage whatever stakes I thought were at play and we fought more against each other than for the relationship.

Tonight we exchanged kind words and meant it and I realised I felt genuine happiness for him.

I didn’t set out today to close this chapter. I’d been thinking about his mother, who used to call me Gert and who’d seemed sincere about wanting to stay in touch, but I’d let it slide, it seemed too much and too invasive back then.

I wanted to send her a Christmas card this year and couldn’t find her address.

I didn’t mean to unpack this box of memories tonight, but I’m sincerely glad I did.