Did you know that moving during the holiday season is incredibly stressful and expensive. I found that out this year. I still owe a gift to my mom.
At the beginning of December, I purchased a small condo (all that I could afford in this area), and moved from my toxic living environment where I was living with a roommate who was, well, toxic. And still owes me $3k, but I probably won’t ever see that money and ultimately that’s okay.
Around October, I realized that things had deteriorated to the point I needed to leave. I told myself that I’d like to have a larger down payment, so I would give myself until September 2020 to find a place.
I don’t remember what the inciting event was, but apparently around November, I was officially Fed Up with everything, and began looking at the retail listings in more earnest. I wish I had come to that conclusion before I put in a lot of effort (and my own money) to paint my previous living area when my landlord had new flooring installed. I had painted my room a lovely forest green that my landlord made me repaint white. The new floors are an ash-wood like tile so…not a lot of contrast there. The green looked a lot better but not my decision.
NaNoWriMo started around the time I found the place I ultimately ended up purchasing, and the only place that didn’t look like it would take a lot of work to fix up (things…I don’t know how to do, wouldn’t mind learning how to do, but wouldn’t be able to focus on writing if I had gone in that direction) that was still in my limited price range.
So I did not finish NaNoWriMo. In fact, I didn’t even get to the halfway point. I did get a good start on the story, and I will return to it, but only after I finish editing my first NaNoWriMo, and get that sent out to an agent. Every year I say I probably won’t participate in NaNoWriMo (because I lose two weeks due to a work event and the holidays) but nearly every year I still try. Not sure what that says about me.
On the day I was scheduled to sign, my boss also gave his two weeks notice, so I have new challenges and opportunities there I am hoping to rise and meet. Because of the transitional period, immediately followed by the holidays, today is the day I feel I really need to gird my loins.
The cats love the new living area. They seem more comfortable being on their own than when I was living with her roommate and her cat, who wasn’t a bully but liked to interject himself into their play and play rough with them–he was a sixteen pound ragdoll so he didn’t mean it, he was just a lot bigger than they were and didn’t always realize that. It’s just been gratifying to see Sayre, especially, come out of his shell and start playing again.
As most people do around this time, I’ve committed myself to become a better version of myself. There will be fewer tv binges and more reading, writing, and an attempt to make friends outside of work.
I actually doubled the books I read in 2019 compared to 2018, and I hope to do that again. I also accomplished reading more nonfiction books, something I haven’t done since college. I hope to continue that into the new year, as well as expanding into a genre I’ve tended to be skeptical of, self improvement.
My favorite fiction book of the 2019 was definitely The Goblin Emperor. I listened to the audio version of this, and though that didn’t give me a reference for the many and varied characters (and sometimes I did forget who was who, it was easy enough to remember via context), I do recommend this highly.
In an effort to make friends, I have also the local writer’s guild in a different chapter. The meeting time is actually easier for me to make, and I’m hoping to join the contests, submit to be in their anthology, etc.
I’m dedicating myself to also managing my emotions better. Instead of blocking off negative emotions with food or tv binges (or, worse, both), I’m going to really try to process them, feel them, and then let them go. Don’t worry, I won’t do that in this space here. 😉 But I have come to realize that my own mental blocks are caused by an unwillingness to process feelings and let them go, coupled with a lack of self discipline. I really hope to change both those things.