Looking Back on 2008*

I really wanted to write this post last night, but the Hubster and I ended up having a late dinner and watching one of my all-time favourite movies together, The Legend of 1900. It’s a longer movie, and by the time it ended it was already after midnight… so I decided to postpone my reflection of 2008 until this morning. And so, here I am. Get ready, this will probably be a long post. :)

How is it even possible that we are already in 2009? Think about it… I still remember writing 1999 at the top of the page when I wrote out the date, and here we are a decade later. Unreal. This past year was really unlike any other I’ve ever experienced, and my life changed in several ways.

When January and February blew in, I was really unsure of my future, and it really affected my outlook on life. I was unhappy with my appearance and weight, and I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to be a teacher. I was terrified that I would not get in anywhere and that I’d be relegated to a mediocre retail position for the rest of my life. Thankfully I have a wonderful husband who talked me through my fears and supported me through all my ups and downs.

By March I was exhausted. I was working 3 jobs, volunteering, going to school full-time and trying to find time to spend with my Hubs. I was unbelievably stressed about grades / graduating and my impending teacher’s college acceptances or denials. The Hubster and I had hoped to take a vacation with my family in Florida, but at the last minute we were unable to go.

April was… well, exhausting. I finished all my final essays and exams and waited for my teacher’s college results. I applied to three schools, all (reasonably) geographically close to where we lived so that if I was not accepted to Hippie U, that I would not be a million miles away. The Hubster assured me that this would never happen… until it did. The first response I received was a “no”, but I had hope when the second response (to River City) was a “yes”. And then the rejection letter from Hippie U came… I still remember opening the letter in the hallway of our apartment and bursting into tears.

May was spent fighting Hippie U’s decision. I was ready to give up, but my Hubster pushed me to keep fighting–coming with me to meetings, drafting letters, phoning everyone under the sun. We tried everything… but by the end of May we were told that there was really no possibility of my being accepted there, and if I was, I would not hear until late July. I had no other choice but to accept the offer from River City U, four hours away. I also began looking for an apartment.

Everything changed in June. I graduated with an honours bachelors of arts with a History / English double major, and on the morning of my graduation a man from the registrar came to find me to tell me personally that I had been accepted into the program at Hippie U. He offered no explanation for the change of heart, but I didn’t care… I was going to stay with my Hubs!!! I flew through the acceptance requirements and that was that. In June I also began working as a strawberry girl with Lilac Dreamer, and made the decision to take control of my body. For a long time I was unhappy with the way that I looked, but I lacked the desire to do anything about it.So, finally, one morning before my birthday, I woke up, and decided to go for a run.

I kept running all through July and slowly built up my endurance. I started out not even being able to make it one lap around my track, but by September I was running 5km in 30 minutes. It’s all detailed in my exercise blog, which I’ll begin updating regularly again soon as I’m now on my “Florida diet”.

In August I began my “dress diet” for Peeah’s wedding and gave up chocolate. I have not eaten anything chocolate since August 22nd, and I feel great. I haven’t felt this good in years! I also started teacher’s college at the end of the month. I began the program with little enthusiasm, as I still wasn’t convinced that I wanted to teach. By the end of the first week I was in love with absolutely everything about the program.

September, October and November flew by. Teacher’s college consumed my life–in such a good way. I hated almost everything about my undergrad, with the exception of my first year, a German history course I took, and a few close friends I made. But I love teacher’s college. LOVE it. I enjoy my classes, the assignments are time-consuming, but easy and I have met amazing people. I am happy in what I am doing, and that feels so good. I also got my first real taste of teaching as I taught grade 10 applied English for 3 weeks in October. I now know without a shadow of a doubt that this is absolutely what I want to do.

December was, well… hectic. I don’t think I slept much during those first 2 weeks of the month. I had 10 assignments / presentations due in that period, as well as Peeah’s wedding. The dress diet was a huge success–from August to December I lost 11 pounds, and I could have actually had the dress taken in a bit because it went from being too tight to too loose. It was a great feeling. :) I finally got a few weeks of holidays from teacher’s college (my first since August) and the Hubster and I traveled to visit both our families. It was a great Christmas!

Look back, 2008 didn’t start well for me… but by June everything changed and life is wonderful. If anything, those trying months showed me once again just how amazing the Hubster is and just how much he loves me. He has stood by me and supported me through so much, and I love him so much for that!

Now then… last year I made several goals for this year… let’s see how I did with them!

1. 2008: Make a definite gym schedule with the Hubs and STICK TO IT. Ideally lose 10 pounds and increase endurance.
Ok, so the whole gym thing didn’t really work out–although the Hubster and I have been going together, just not as regularly as we should. However, I DID increase my endurance as I can now run 5km, and I lost ELEVEN pounds, so I actually exceeded my goal! YAYYYYY!!!
2009: Get my but to the gym at least twice a week, three times if I can manage it. Reach weight goal–7 lbs to go. Also, have a flatter stomach by Florida (March break).

2. 2008: Reduce chocolate intake. Eat better. Healthy food. Vive la fruit!!
I did reduce my chocolate intake… to nothing! Four months clean! I feel so much healthier as I now choose better options where I would have reached for some chocolate before.
2009: Continue replacing “bad” foods with better choices. Stop eating fast food where I can, and cut back on eating chips (my guilty pleasure…).

3. 2008: Work towards having a flatter stomach.
Well, losing the weight certainly helped with this department, but it still needs a lot of work.

2009: Work on toning stomach. Apparently I have abs under there somewhere. Find them. haha

4. 2008: Choose piano over Peggle [addictive computer game that I love].
Hahaha… unfortunately, this did not happen. You can click on the link and see how amaaaaazing it is! However, this year I am determined to do this. The Hubster just bought me two wonderful new piano books for Christmas, and I intend to learn them inside and out.

2009: Play piano at least 3 times a week. Learn one new song a week. Doable.

5. 2008: Continue to write in my blog, and do so often.
This started out with a bang, as I started telling the story of how the Hubster and I met. However, as life got busy, I began neglecting my blog. No more. I intend to finish Our Story by the end of January. Get ready!

2009: Write in my blog, and finish Our Story.

I’m pretty happy with the progress I’ve made… and to these goals, I’d like to add:

–Run a 5km race
–Be able to comfortably run 7 – 8km
–Graduate teacher’s college and find a job
–Read books that are not school books
–Bake a pie from scratch
–Stop keeping things just to keep them. Clean up and clean out.

So, that’s my list for 2009… and I’m really looking forward to it. This year will bring a lot of changes for the Hubster and I, as we will be purchasing our first vehicle, we’ll both finish school, move away from Senior’s City and start real jobs. It’s all so exciting… and I hope you’ll keep reading as we go through it–I’ll keep you posted! :)

Happy New Year!!

Much love,
Shop Girl*

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