It’s the last night of the year, and I’m spending it like I spent nearly all my other nights – here at home with Troy, my four babies all safely asleep down the hall. And I’m happy with that…my life is good.
Really, I’m finishing the year off well. Alyssa spent the day here making sure the children didn’t do anything egregious, and Troy and I spent the day at the sports bar watching UFC 207. I’d been looking forward to it, since I always like doing that and this time was Rowdy’s comeback fight and I was gunning for her to win her belt back. It would have been great, except Ronda lost! She wasn’t even competitive – whatever she’s been doing for the 13 months since she fought last, it doesn’t seem to have been learning from her mistakes in the last fight, because this one was similar. She looked in absolutely amazing shape, but she got in the octagon and was basically a punching bag for forty seconds until the ref called the fight. It was definitely not what I was expecting. Not what anyone was expecting – I think even the people who tipped that she would lose didn’t expect her to lose like that. Honestly, it was just a miserable fight to watch and kind of a shitty way to end the card. Shitty way to end a career too, and it’s pretty hard to imagine Ronda coming back now. I feel really bad for her – she’s had a phenomenal career, but knowing what I know about her I think she’s going to have a hard time seeing past another loss. Still, the men’s bantamweight title fight that was on before (Cruz/Garbrandt, with Garbrandt taking the belt) went for five rounds and was amazing to watch, so that kind of made up for it.
We came home and collected Alyssa and the children and went out for tea. Just to La Porchetta, but it was pretty good and nice to be eating out for a change. We then drove Alyssa to her place and then brought all the children home, all of them getting progressively louder and sillier as they became more and more overtired!
Well, apart from Nicholai, who is just embarrassed by everything everyone else does and spent his time in the car kind of hunched over pretending we didn’t exist.
It’s kind of amazing to think that another year is over. Time…I don’t even know what to say. I think it was a good year in lots of ways though, and I’m hopeful for the next year for all of us. I want the children to grow and thrive, I want Troy and I to keep growing and to always love each other the way we do now. I want to grow too…I want to be brave and strong and always open to learning more and being who I really am.
What did you do in 2016 that you’d never done before?
Did you keep you New Year’s Resolutions and will you make more for next year?
I didn’t make any for this year. For next year I resolve to floss my teeth and keep my Cozi calendar up to date.
Did anyone close to you give birth?
Lee had Leila.
Did anyone close to you die?
What countries did you visit?
None, although I have booked tickets to go back to Indonesia in January!
What would you like to have in 2017 that you lacked in 2016?
I wouldn’t say we lacked money exactly, but I would have liked to have had more. I’m hoping that next year I’m able to do a little bit of CRT work and earn some extra.
What date(s) from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
No specific dates. I can hardly remember events from this year, let alone dates.
What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Becoming a real teacher! I finally did the project and completed the requirements to become a fully registered teacher instead of a provisional one.
What was your biggest failure?
My health, and not being successful at making the changes I need to improve it. (In other words, I’m still fat and eat crap)
Did you suffer illness or injury?
Well, I added liver disease to my list of ailments. But apart from all the chronic problems, I didn’t really get sick that much at all.
What was the best thing you bought?
The new van. It’s not the Jeep I was going to get (and that’s a disappointment for this year!) but we had to be practical and it’s a good car for our family.
Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Emma’s. She has just grown and matured so much this year, and made a wonderful transition to high school and being a teenager. I am so proud of her.
Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Humanity as a whole – Trump winning the US election and what that says about the majority’s values and beliefs shattered me.
Where did most of your money go?
Food – I can’t believe how much the children eat. The new car cost a bit, and we had to get a new hot water system, which set us back. Christmas and my upcoming trip to Indonesia have not been cheap either.
What did you get really, really excited about?
Becoming a real teacher. It doesn’t really change anything about my day to day work life, but the fact that I actually did it was huge for me.
What song will always remind you of 2016?
Lima Monyet Lompat, which if Five Little Monkeys in Indonesian. This is the song that the preps and 1s did at assembly as part of my teacher project.
Compared to this time last year are you:
-happier or sadder? Maybe happier. My bipolar and depression have been really pretty stable all year, and I’m happy about that.
-thinner or fatter? Marginally thinner. Still fat. Blah.
-richer or poorer? Mostly about the same I think. Possibly a bit poorer, just because of Christmas/ Indonesia.
What do you wish you’d done more of?
What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying. Although frankly I don’t know if this is even possible for me!
How will you be spending Christmas?
We woke up at six, opened presents, I had a nap, went to lunch at the Yarra Glen pub, came home and played with gifts. It was lovely.
Did you fall in love in 2016?
With knitting socks? Does that count?
How many one night stands?
As always, no!
What was your favourite tv program?
I enjoyed the new seasons we had of Game of Thrones and Walking Dead. I watched a whole lot of Dance Moms and Toddlers and Tiaras and Traffic Cops on youtube. Troy and I bought a box set of al the UFC bouts from 2015 and every Saturday night we watched MMA, which I loved.
Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No. I don’t think I hate anyone – no bitter nemesis for me at the moment.
What was the best book you read?
I read 130 books this year, so there were quite a few in there that I thought were excellent. Hyperbole and a Half, by Allie Brosch was mostly comics with some writing, but I loved that so much. I Am Rebecca, and Being Magdalene, by Fleur Beale were really good, and My Life with the Liars, by Caela Carter, was another book about girls in a cult that I loved. A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the aftermath of tragedy by Sue Klebold (the mother of one of the Columbine high school shooters) was absolutely gut wrenching, probably the book that made the biggest impact on me all year.
What was your greatest musical discovery?
Do I ever make any musical discoveries? Alyssa showed me a bunch of Indonesian pop songs, which was entertaining and made for some great classes, perhaps that’s it.
What did you want and get?
My full teacher registration. I worked for it, and I’m really proud of it.
What did you want and not get?
A Jeep! I was going to get one, we were waiting for the Trailhawk to be released, but then the van broke down and the mechanic said it was probably the beginning of a long slide towards death, so I was sensible and let go of the Jeep for a new van.
What was your favourite film of this year?
I don’t think I have one really. I have discovered that I now enjoy watching creepy movies on dvd while I’m knitting, although I have to do it by myself during the day because Troy doesn’t like them!
What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
It was Christmas day, so I’ve already answered that. I turned 39, which means I am going to be 40 next year, a fact that I am yet to accept.
What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I had been able to take control of my health and improve that the way I wanted to.
How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2016?
Um…yeah, fat person not wanting to be noticed. Hand knitted socks.
What kept you sane?
Which celebrity/ public figure did you fancy the most?
What political issue stirred you the most?
The US election was everywhere, and for something that has no real bearing on my life I found it extremely upsetting.
Who did you miss?
No one really – I think I am lucky to have the people I love right here with me.
Who was the best new person you met?
Soren’s teacher, Kylie. She’s lovely, and was a great teacher for him this year, so I’m glad she has entered our lives. She’s going to be Jericho’s teacher next year.
Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2017.
Not a life lesson, but the words I tattooed on my arm came to mind again and again this year. Beautiful wonderful. It’s worth searching for, and holding onto when you find it.