2004 is coming to an end in the next couple of days and as I look back I am trying to reflect on some of the positive things that have happened - may as well get a jump start on my NEW POSITIVE attitude for 2005, right?
2004 was the first year of my marriage. As promised it was rocky. I’ve heard that the first year is the hardest of all the years. We got through relatively unscathed. Upon returning from a trip to Tom’s friend Jennifer’s wedding Tom told me he had ordered a bunch of “marriage” books online. I, of course, did not believe him and assumed he was making fun of my addiction to “self help” books. He wasn’t joking – we came home to a book called “Good Marriage” – I read it (and am rather doubtful that Tom will ever turn a page in that book J). The first two chapters pertained to the first year of marriage, chapter 1: Creating a partnership while maintaining autonomy and chapter 2: Separating from the Family of Origin.
This book came at a great time… after reading those two chapters I recognized the turning point that we were coming to with our first year anniversary just around the corner. I felt that we had done a pretty decent job of creating a partnership while maintaining autonomy, but the separation from the family of origin really hit home. I realized that I wasn’t fully embracing my role as wife while moving away from my role as daughter. I was still attached to that role – and still am. I enjoy my relationship with my parents and have lived under their safe umbrella for 28 years before marrying Tom – particularly the umbrella of my father’s support and guidance. I realized that I was still depending on that quite a bit and therefore in a way stealing some of Tom’s power in our relationship and of all things handing it to my dad. Over the course of the last couple of months I have consciously tried to turn to Tom more and more for the things that I would normally talk to my dad about. Now I would be lying if I said I won’t go to my dad anymore, but I am trying to discuss things with Tom first and have us make decisions together and bring my dad in if we both agree that we need outside support in something. So far I think I’m doing okay here! J
We purchased a house this year as well. Dad purchased 50% of the condo and we used that money to purchase a town home exactly one block away. We purchased the house before it was finished being built and were able to pick out a lot of the interior finishes. We are pleased with the final result, and though I had my reservations about living in a town home I really do love it! Turns out it was a great investment – town homes in our area are now selling for $55k more than we paid for ours. We deliberated a lot about whether or not we really wanted to be strapped with a home mortgage. The condo mortgage payment was so low it was comparable to rent, but a mortgage payment to purchase a home in the city is over DOUBLE what we paid for the condo. We were nervous, but felt that we would soon be priced out of the area and wouldn’t be able to purchase something at all. Looks like we were right.
I finished enough tests to get me to a fully qualified DNOS position and to get the stipend from the home office. I got my title and my raise. I still need to take a couple more tests to maintain the title and the raise. I have the Series 10 on my plate in January/February and I’m supposed to get the Series 65 by June 2005. I’m still working to wiggle my way out of this role and move more into a support / Client Relations Center role. It is public that I want to move on. Tammy has assured me that they are looking for someone to replace me. I think it will take some finagling and I will need to be the main person while the second person finishes up with their testing and training, but I’m seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Part of my goals for the beginning of 2005 is to come up with an end date as to how long I’m willing to hang in there before I chose to go elsewhere for employment.
Tom was laid off from K2 the week of Thanksgiving. I’m still amazed at how well I handled that news. Tom had already been starting his job search to move on from K2 and hopefully the bike business and I think this has just put him in a more urgent situation. Unfortunately year-end isn’t the best time to look for a job, but he has been making contacts and networking so he can jump right in at the New Year. He got 2 weeks notice and 4 weeks severance – we are coming up against the end of that severance at the end of the week and I am a bit nervous about making ends meet on unemployment, but we’ve got some money saved up and we should be fine. I know he won’t be unemployed forever and hopefully he will be able to break into the cooking gadget market. We have decided that this is not worthy of a move – Tom will continue to look for employment in Seattle and I will hang in there here as long as I need to.
We were going to wait until 2005 to see an RE, but I got fed up with not being monitored by my OBGYN so I contacted Dr. Hicock at the end of November and was able to get in to see him right away due to a cancellation he had. We just completed our first round of treatment with him – unfortunately without success. I would like to be more aggressive in 2005, but am awaiting a call back to see if he is on board. 2004 presented many struggles for me, for Tom and for our marriage around my infertility. My whole life (well since I first started thinking about the prospect of having my own children) I’ve assumed that getting pregnant would be a challenge – my mom had trouble and I’ve never had regular cycles. I started working toward this at the beginning of 2003 – just trying to be physically as ready as I could be – little did I know that it was my emotional stability I should have been working on. J I’m excited to – try to – wipe the slate clean and move on. Part of my desire to adjust my attitude in a more positive direction is that in looking back over the past year I see that my struggle with infertility has sent me down an even greater spiral of negativity. It has affected my relationship with Tom, my relationships with my friends and even my relationship with myself. I don’t want it to rule my life anymore. Over this past year I have felt cheated, like a failure, like my life will never take shape, hopeless, alone, abandoned, afraid, frustrated, angry, disappointed and mostly sad. I’ve felt like my life isn’t really amounting to much and now I can’t even bring life into this world. I’m hoping to have a more positive outlook in 2005 and to drop the pity party and start making changes to the life I keep saying I hate – which is a bit of an exaggeration on most days.
All in all life is good… I won’t lie and tell you that there isn’t a gaping hole in my heart where a child belongs.. but I’m going to try to deal with it in a more positive light in the coming year.