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Bittersweet 2010

Although 2010 has been a particularly difficult year in some areas, I can never say that 2010 was a terrible year for me. This was the year of bittersweet. Last year at this time, this is where I was.

This year brought so much happiness and so much sadness, it is very difficult to love or hate the year gone by. Of course the highlight of this year for me was the birth of Babyice. On the 2nd of February at 19:34 I became a mother, technically not for the first time, but for real. On that day my life and priorities changed forever. With our baby came awe, adoration, love and frustration. I was fortunate to have a friend who was willing to help me through those first few weeks since I didn’t really have family that could. Thank you for your support and help, Cazpi. I am forever in your debt :). Being a parent is something to be experienced, it isn’t really something you can fathom from hearing about it or watching movies. I am extremely blessed and still look at my little miracle and wonder how I got so lucky.

So when do the presents come?

Babyice had a lovely first Christmas and got spoilt rotten. It sounds very cliched, but he is the light of my life. I just re-read my birth story and got all teary eyed thinking about it and reading the comments. It really was a wonderful period in my life, despite feeling overwhelmed and inadequate a lot of the time. The little guy still has me scratching my head, but a lot of the time he has me smiling and that is all that matters. The only complaint I have is that he is growing up SO fast. My little baby is already long gone and quickly heading into toddlerhood!

Of course the hardest part of this year was watching my grandfather slip away from us and eventually cross over to the other side. At the end of last year he was still going through chemo and we were still hopeful that he would survive for some time. Obviously this was not in God’s plan for him/us. Watching him die a little every single day was horrific. Each time I would see him he would be thinner, less able to speak, less coherent and less willing to live. Not being able to help him carry the burden, share his pain or take it away was so hard. I still feel guilty that he wasn’t at home when he passed away. It was one of his wishes and he died just days after being put in a frail care facility. We did not know how much longer he had left and my grandmother really could not care for him at home, despite having help. I hope in 2011 I can forgive myself for this, even though I am not really at fault. My grandfather was a wonderful man and left a gaping hole in our family. I really miss him.

The end of the year was tainted by another great loss. Our Evangelist and close family friend departed from this world on the 26th of December. I will always remember him for his outstanding character and compassion. Although he is gone from this world, he joins my grandfather and I am sure this will bring them both happiness as they were good friends.

Also this year My Evil Mother has started making progress towards bettering her life. I still keep her at a safe distance, but I am no longer cutting her out of my life completely. I hope she will continue in the right direction in 2011 and that she will be able to make changes that will make the family proud and less hesitant to have her in our lives.

With these big events in my life, the every day things that happened don’t really stand out. This year definitely left an impression on me and will always be remembered. Many things changed and in many ways I am better off and happier.

Work this year has not been spectacular. I was off for 6 months, which was incredibly awesome. I am so lucky that the company I work for allows 6 months maternity leave with full pay. Another blessing which I am grateful for. After returning from maternity leave I was moved to the portfolio I have been dreading for ages. The 31st of December is my last day working in this portfolio. It wasn’t nearly as bad as I anticipated, yet I look forward going back to my comfort zone. I think I have done well here, but not too well 😉

Rudi and I travelled to Johannesburg twice this year. On both occasions we went up for a weekend to attend a wedding. We attended Angel and Glugster‘s wedding at the end of July and Rudi’s cousin’s wedding early December. Rudi and I don’t travel much. Even when we were childless we didn’t invest much time and money in travel. We went to Hermanus for our honeymoon in 2007, we went to Knysna for a weekend not long after that. In 2009 we went to George for a weekend to meet Nellie and this year, Johannesburg. Twice. That sums up all the travelling and going away we’ve done in the almost 10 years we’ve been together. I doubt we’ll travel much soon or go away anywhere since it’s a lot more difficult now with Babyice. He gets unhappy travelling just 25 minutes into town in the car, I can’t imagine sticking him in the car for hours on end driving to our destination.

And just like that, 2010 is over. I wish you all a wonderful, beautiful, inspiring and prosperous 2011!