My year end blog is a little late to the party, but when is that not the case?
I wanted to talk about all the things that happened this year, both good and bad but it was just...so much. And then I got a headache and I had to walk away for a bit. I came back and deleted it all and here we are again.
What can I say about 2020 that hasn't already been said in five million other posts online?
Nothing. I don't have the skill or eloquence to unpack this year for the world/country/state/community at large.
So I'll just stick to my personal life and hope it entertains and amuses you.
In other words, The Usual.
I moved last week.
I have officially been in my new residence for eight days.
We had to leave a day earlier than planned because the Midwest had a snow storm it wanted to bury us in.
I lost a whole day of packing.
Maybe that doesn't sound like that big of a deal. And it probably isn't for those of you who never waste time and always, always do what you're supposed to do and never piss around.
I am not that person.
Though I tried this time. I gave it an honest effort. I truly wanted this move to be the best move I've ever had. I wanted to be prepared and organized and ahead of schedule.
I can hear my friends laughing as they read this.
I severely overestimated my abilities.
Anyway, more help than I could possibly deserve showed up last Sunday and started loading the moving truck. Things were thrown into boxes never to be seen again. It was chaos and dog hair and anxiety.
And then some well-intentioned person packed my anxiety meds.
And the dog's tranquilizers.
I think I may have blacked out for a few minutes as I rage packed the bathroom.
And these amazing people just kept working--diligently, faithfully, sweetly.
People I don't even know that well came to help. My heart was well and truly touched.
Despite the chaos...which, let's be honest, the chaos was of my own making, I was able to closed out this year in the most beautiful place on earth.
Twelve months ago this wasn't even a thought in our minds. We began the year much the same as everyone else-- with foolish optimism. We celebrated Bear's 9th birthday at Chucky Cheese. Where children eat and run and play arcade games all at the same time. The place was packed with children and haggard looking adults. There were greasy fingerprints all over every visible surface. A man in a rat costume sang songs and people celebrated. It was a lawless time and bless our hearts, we had no idea how things would change.
As the the world took on a pandemic, we altered our plans and our lives to accommodate this new wave of chaos.
Cap was deemed essential and he continued to work.
I tried to focus on writing the most important book of my life to date while my day job went remote.
Bear's school was canceled for 2 weeks... which turned into the rest of the year.
Author events were rescheduled and then canceled.
Friends who were supposed to visit had to cancel.
I turned 37 and made 100 cupcakes for the party that never happened.
I finished that very important book despite working from home and homeschooling.
It was the month that I finished that book that Cap came home and said, "What if we move?"
Stupidly, I walked into his question blind, not realizing he was presenting a real idea and not a hypothetical. I hadn't slept in days trying to hit deadline. My hair was unwashed and I'm pretty sure I was wearing my pajamas backwards. I was so damn happy I had finished the book that I was riding that high for as long as I could. It never occurred to me that his question was real.
But it was real and as soon as I caught up to him, I was not onboard.
I was onboard for his business venture. I wanted that for him more than anything. Dual dreams was something we had discussed many times over. No one's dream would ever trump the other's. We had always agreed to balance the two as much as possible.
So when he was presented with the kind of opportunity that only comes along once in a lifetime I knew we had to take it.
But I wanted to be able to take it without having to relocate.
I loved my house. Still do.
It's cute and perfect and felt like home the first night there.
Cap understood and agreed that staying where we were made the most sense. He could still do all the businessy things from where we were.
But my motto for life and my author tagline is One More Adventure. That's not on accident. It's a theme in my stories and it's a reminder to me at all times to get ready. Because one more adventure is always right around the corner, whether you're ready for it or not.
Cap called me from work and told me to sit down.
He never calls me from work.
The opportunity had grown.
He now had the opportunity to not only buy into the business my father built when I was a child, but to move back to my home town.
See, 21 years ago my family moved. We left Rapid City for Iowa and it was a smart decision. But it wasn't an easy move. I missed the Hills everyday. I missed the weather and the people and the mountains. It hurt to visit because I could never stay.
And so we built a life in Iowa. I met and married the love of my life. Had his child. Learned and grew and bloomed where I'd been planted. 21 years in Iowa and I was content.
I planned on staying forever.
I never dared to dream I could go back.
It never occurred to me that my husband, my best friend, would buy the business my father sold decades before.
"Full circle" was a phrase I've used but never experienced in such a complete and shocking way.
And here we are.
One. More. Adventure.
I'm sitting at the dining room table looking out over a horizon of evergreen and the bluest sky I have ever seen.
I can't believe this is my life.
If I think about it too much I get weepy with gratitude.
My cup runneth the fuck over.
This year definitely didn't go as anyone planned. This is the first year since publishing that I haven't published a book. I wrote one, but it's not ready to be seen yet. And during the time I had hoped to write another one I was packing and looking for a place to live in a market that's the popular kid at the party. No kidding, I lost 3 rentals in less than 24 hours. Plus, finding a rental that takes dogs larger than 15 pounds was a trick. And we weren't leaving without Annie. That was nonnegotiable.
It was a year of unknown.
A year where memes became the universal way of coping.
A year with high emotions and big changes.
A year that was experienced by everyone very much alone and yet with everyone else.
In a world more connected than ever, we were also the most isolated we've ever been.
This year held both awful and amazing for me.
I don't know if I'll look back on 2020 with the contempt of so many others.
I think I'll look back on it with astonishment. So much happened in so little time. I felt like I spent this entire year flying by the seat of my pants.
And I didn't hate it.