This year has been full of surprises. It has mostly flown by but in some places it has taken its sweet time. There have been birthdays, two road trips, one concert, one funeral in my personal realm. Worldwide, there have been many great people in the arts industry that we have lost and other highlights I cannot seem to recall right now.
Let’s take 2009 from the top.
The United States inaugurated our first “black” president on January 20th, just four days before my birthday.
I turned 22. I’m SO ready to celebrate my Golden Birthday, I don’t know why I love my birthday so much, it’s just my “thing” to cherish it.
Also during this month, Jay and I were learning how to be apart for weeks at a time as Jay began his first semester at the University of Iowa.
- The Super Bowl was being viewed by millions on TV. It was my first time even watching for more than 2 seconds and I gave an honest effort to understand what was happening.
- Winter stuck around and Jay and I continued to go back and forth between Iowa City and Cedar Falls.
- I flew by the seat of my pants and decided I couldn’t handle my melancholy lifestyle and living weekend-to-weekend and holding my breath, speeding down the interstate to kiss my true love… I decided to move to Iowa City.
- As of the first week of March, I was settled into the apartment that I’m sitting in now.
- My sister turned 18 and my brother turned 12 (on the 6th and 4th, respectively).
- Mid-month, Jay and I packed up our bags and drove all the way to Florida. It was phenomenal as I’d never been in the ocean before Jay taught me how to body surf!
- Jay turned 23 on the 19th, while we were still in Florida.
- I began establishing my career in nursing at Iowa City Rehab (I began in late March, but by the time my orientation was through, it was April).
- Jay and I fell into easy rhythm living together.
- Jay completed his first semester at the University. Good job, Handsome!
- Jay and I attend the wedding of one of my high school classmates, Whitney. Congratulations! Such a wonderful day!
- America loses Farrah Fawcett, Ed McMahon, and Michael Jackson.
- I will always remember watching Michael’s funeral on several flatscreen T.V.’s while getting a pedicure with my mother-in-love.
- On June 24, the community of Aplington-Parkersburg lost a foundational member: Coach Ed Thomas. I do not know if it’s my place to say much about this (as I never knew Ed) but I know that he is greatly missed and was a great mentor, especially to Jay.
- Also on June 24, Jay’s former classmate and friend, Mark Becker, was arrested and charged with murdering Ed Thomas. Again, I know this has deeply impacted Jay and I applaud him for being a true friend and being completely responsible with the newspaper reporters. Our thoughts are with the Beckers this Holiday Season.
- Jay and I got to visit our families a TON throughout the summer…
- One of the most fun visits was when Jay’s mom brought his niece and nephew (here on business from Florida) to come see us.
- We got through summer without a flood, which was awesome because Cedar Rapids/Iowa City got the worst of the flooding in 2008 and I was sure to be miserable if there were a repeat.
- Jay began his second semester at the University.
- America loses Patrick Swayze, famous for such films as Ghost and Dirty Dancing.
- Fall T.V. turns out to be fantastic, especially with Glee.
- Jay and I travel to Kentucky to see the Kings of Leon live.
- Soon after we get back from KY, we both come down with the flu (Jay got sick just one day before I so we were both miserable together).
- This was the first year that I did absolutely nothing for Halloween- did not carve pumpkins, no candy, no costumes… I was too busy with work! Boo…
- Jay and I celebrated one year together.
- We did not celebrate Thanksgiving– partly because of the lack of desire, partly because of timing/work schedules.
- I brought my little sister to Iowa City with me, hoping to propel her into a new pattern of living.
- I struggled with finding my Christmas cheer… Two Christmas trees and one broken car window later and I’ve found it.
- Both my paternal grandpa and maternal grandma were in and out of the hospital; both are in stable health now.
- Brittney Murphy dies at age 32. I’m skeptical of “natural causes” but we’ll see…
- I’ve learned to relinquish some of my ever-sought-after control in order to really enjoy the moment. It’s hard, and I have to check myself quite a bit but it’s worth the effort.
This has been quite a year but in all, I’m so glad to be exactly where I am. I am with people who love me, I have a secure job, I have my health. I have plenty more than other people and for that I am grateful. I plan to keep learning even more next year, and I hope to be more self-reflecting in 2010.
How will you all remember 2009?