One of my favorite blogs is http://www.simplemom.net/. I subscribe to its daily feed, and there rarely is a day where I'm not intrigued by what Tsh has to say. In one of her most recent posts, she encourages her readers to reflect on 2008 BEFORE setting 2009 goal's and resolutions. She brilliantly points out that "resolutions made in haste can be pointless, discouraging and depressing." She suggests setting yourself up for success by really thinking about what you want out of 2009 instead of just aimlessly naming lofty new year's vows. Here's my stab at her reflection questions.

1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year?

Greta Laine entered the world!

2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened?

I had a baby seven weeks prematurely.

3. What was an unexpected joy this past year?

I expected joy when Greta was born. What I didn't necessarily expect was that I'd fall in love with my husband all over again for different reasons than why I originally fell in love with him. He is now a father, the father of our child, and he is wonderful at it.

4. What was an unexpected obstacle?

I had high blood pressure prior to getting pregnant, so I decided to consult a high risk obstetrician to treat my condition along with the pregnancy. I knew that because of my pre-existing condition of hypertension, I was at a higher risk for developing preeclampsia. Through diet, exercise and medication, my doctors controlled my blood pressure throughout the pregnancy. However, eventually, around my 30th week, my blood pressure started to spike, and I started showing signed of preeclampsia. Despite all my efforts to fight it off, preeclampsia was not just knocking at my door; it was beating it down.

My original due date was August 19. I ended up on bedrest in the hospital on July 3. Greta was born July 6. Although I'd tried my best to dodge preeclampsia and to educate myself on the condition, I was never fully prepared for the what-ifs of it all. I knew about preeclampsia, and I knew its symptoms. I didn't fully realize how things would go down. I wasn't ready for my baby to be born early and to spend the first two weeks of her life in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit.

5. Pick three words to describe 2008.




6. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe your 2008 (don’t ask them; guess based on how you think your spouse sees you).




7. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe their 2008 (again, without asking).




8. What were the best books you read this year?

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

Your Pregnancy Week by Week by Glade B. Curtis

It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff by Peter Walsh

Belly Laughs: The Naked Truth about Pregnancy and Childbirth by Jenny McCarthy

9. With whom were your most valuable relationships?

Eric -- Poor guy had to deal with a crazy hormonal pregnant woman. God bless him.


Cara -- The girl offered so much support to me as a clueless pregnant girl AND as a clueless new mom. Words can never be enough to thank her!

10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?

I became a mother.

11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally?

My heart expanded two-fold when I had my daughter. I never knew I could love someone so much. At the same time, I never knew that it could hurt so badly to love someone so much, to worry so much about them.

12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually?

As cheesy as it sounds, I feel like having a baby made me feel more in love with life and more appreciative of the soulfulness and spirituality of people. Everything is so much more beautiful now that I see things through the eyes of a mother.

13. In what way(s) did you grow physically?

I grew a baby!

14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others?

I grew close to Eric, as we bonded over an experience that tested every aspect of our relationship. Expanding from two to three was challenging, but I feel that we passed with flying colors.

I grew close with several "mommy" friends of mine -- girls that were friends before but became even more invaluable once we shared the common bond of motherhood. Y'all know who you are -- THANK YOU THANK YOU! :-)

A couple days after Greta was born -- hormonally-charged, anxiety-ridden, dealing with the emotional pain of having a baby in the NICU and suffering from post-c-section aftermath -- in a moment where I felt like the world was falling apart, in walked my sister-in-law into my hospital room. As I sat there crying, she saved me from feeling so alone. I am forever grateful for her being there that day.

15. What was the most enjoyable area of managing your home?

I like to decorate.

16. What was your most challenging area of home management?

Keeping up with the laundry is a bitch. I don't mind washing it, but I hate putting it away.

17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year?

Surfing the Internet is like this big black hole where all my time seems to escape.

18. What was the best way you used your time this past year?

I rested when I needed to so I could grow a baby!

19. What was biggest thing you learned this past year?

Motherhood is the best thing I've ever done with my life.

20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2008 for you.

I could get flowery and wordy here, but in a nutshell, all my dreams came true in all my first moments with Greta -- the first time I felt her little body against my skin, the first time I heard her little cry, the first time I tried to nurse her, the night we brought her home, the first time she smiled at me...


2008 was a big year. I had a baby. I met the most beatiful girl in the entire world, and she is mine. We became a family.

I got cut to part-time at my job at the law firm. That sucked at the time, considering I was in my first trimester of pregnancy and there was no way I could go find another job while pregnant, because who wants to hire a woman who will be soon be taking a 3-month leave of absence? Being cut from full-time status resulted in discontinuation of health insurance. Dealing with this while pregnant was stressful, but we got through it. I'm proud of how we handled it.

Eric made partner at his law firm. I'm quite proud of him and all his hard work.

I developed friendships that I think are going to be life-lasting. And even if they're not, I'm still blessed to say those friendships have been a huge part of some very important chapters in my life. The impact of those friendships cannot be measured by any means or adequately described by words.

I feel like 2008 was the first year that depression didn't play a big part in my life. Having Greta is definitely my biggest "accomplishment" of 2008, but keeping depression at bay, especially while pregnant -- that was huge for me.

I've so much to be thankful for, this I know.


Me? A Mom? said...


thanks for being there for me too. Even though I've only known you since 2005, I feel like we've been friends for decades. That's what I'm talking about!