What 2010 Taught Me

As all of you know, 2010 has been quite the year for me. With medical insanity around every corner as well as personal tragedies, I sometimes wondered if I would survive the onslaught. At the turn of the year, I’m permitting myself to engage in a wee bit of introspection because as you know, I am never otherwise reflective

1. Though I knew I possessed emotional strength, the events of this year showed me a resilience I not only didn’t know I possessed, but I didn’t imagine existed in mere mortals. I amazed myself. And, yes, I said amazed.

2. My health can take a beating and I will recover, so I do not need to live in mortal fear of the next medical issue’s destructive impact.

3. Friendships might be even more complicated than romantic relationships.

4. I never regret following my heart. Now if only my brain had an off switch.

5. The things I thought I was good at are things I now KNOW I am good at. I have skills and talents that possess the ability to impact more than just myself in a positive way.

6. Laughter can transform, heal, and pretty much save sanity.

7. I can truly and completely fall to pieces and the only person needed to put myself back together is me.

8. If you view the actions of now as the story you will look back upon in years to come, it is sometimes easier to find your way through muddy waters. This year I have learned that when I get stuck, I need only ask myself, “How do I want to remember this moment?” and suddenly things become clear.

9. People, myself included, often hold back from going the extra mile for a “friend” because they believe that person would not do the same for them. I have come to realize that it is more about making sure you go the extra mile for those you know will do the same in return. It’s not about who isn’t going to do what. It’s about lavishing attention on those you want to be a part of your life. Making it about opening up your heart and giving freely feels much better.

10. A year full of Hard Things can also be the best year you have ever lived. 2010 has been that for me.

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About Jen

After acquiring a degree from Vassar College in psychology, I moved to Western Mass where I ran a peer mentoring network for disabled college students as well as activism and organizing around disability issues. I also conducted research on disabled women’s body image. An Upstate New York native, I eventually followed my heliotropic nature to the sun of Southern California. I divide my time between writing (disability fiction and essays) along with moderating San Diego Bisexual Forum which is one of the oldest groups of its kind in the country. In my off hours I can often be found in my neighborhood live music venue enjoying our local talent.

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