I used to enjoy a good, drunken, raucous New Year’s party as much as the next person. But as soon as I married Arwyn, those days were over. I have since pretty much seen the New Year in alone every year, as she can not stay up that late.
What can I say about 2006? In many ways, believe it or not, it was an improvement over 2005. I began the year in a quagmire or debt and financial distress. 2007 begins with us still in debt, but finances are more manageable. It still wouldn’t take much of a reversal to wipe us out, but we’re maintaining. I’m putting 2.5x more into savings every month than I was a year ago.
Arwyn is on board with the finances at least in principle. She is still wildly impulsive with her spending but at least seems to see the wisdom in kicking free of payments.
I pretty much kicked smoking to the curb last year. I am now more smoke free for a longer time that at any time since I began smoking. However, I’m not sure I like the nicotine free me. I’m even more withdrawn and isolated into myself than I was before. I still feel the cravings and the draw towards the things. The gamble here is that I’ll have a future that is more worth living in than leaving behind. I have yet to fully redeem that promise.
My health has not improved so much, tho. My joints seem to be falling to pieces as my weight has begun creeping. Or maybe it just seems like I’m bigger because my mother-in-law has made more than one snide remark about my weight. So I have some work to do in that area.
Professionally, I’ve grown over the past year. This has translated partially towards making good financially but it also makes work a veritable safe haven for me. A place where I am respected and admired and listened to and liked; all the very things that are NOT a part of my life in my house with my spouse.
At home, I’ve enjoyed my kids this year more as they’ve gotten older. I haven’t spent as much time with them, but I think I’ve spent some good quality time with them. I found that when I’m alone with them I have less problems, and things are much more relaxed. We enjoy the simple things, like playing in the backyard, shelling and eating peanuts, or just taking out the garbage. I wish I had more constructive things for them to do as they get older because they have a lot of energy that needs to be used and challenged.
Okay, the marriage; this is one area where things have NOT improved. In fact, the deterioration has been more this year than any previous single year or maybe all previous years put together. Arwyn has spent a lot of the year sleeping more on the couch than in our bed. Her deciding to attend another church has been a huge wedge in one of the few remaining areas where we had agreement. Other than the children, there isn’t a lot that we share anymore. I still love her, but sometimes dislike her. I resent her lack of interest and investment in our relationship.
Honestly, I have no idea how you all can read this without getting suppressed!
07 – I’ve always considered 7 to be a lucky number. It’s certainly a Holy one. What kind of dreams and expectations should I take with me into 07? I’m usually not good with resolutions, as such, and usually eschew making them. But I do need to noodle out some sort of vision.
First off I have a couple of things to look forward to. One is that after a 3 year absence, I will make a return trip to Iowa with the boys. I’d rather Arwyn not come as she HATES the farm but it’s hard to imagine her not going. I also have my 25th class reunion which is actually being held at a time I’ll be able to attend. I graduated from a class of 56, so I knew everyone and look forward to seeing some of them again for the first time in 25 years. It’s good to have something to look forward to.
I’d like to continue the good things that are going with finances and the job and the kids. Yeah, something needs to be done about the marriage business. We need to decide what it is going to be between us and work towards that, one way or another. I’d like for things to grow, blossom and flourish the way we wanted when we first got married. But we both need to share in the same vision, similar to what we’re beginning to do with our finances.