What A Difference A Year Makes

Yesterday was my birthday. I turned 38. This year, it wasn’t a painful birthday. There was no angst, no tears, no feelings of being ignored. Man, what a difference a year makes.

I like to stop every now and then and look back a year ago to where I was. It helps put things in perspective.


A year ago….

1) I was in a really turbulent relationship. It wasn’t the relationship I wanted, but I felt it was all I deserved. I tried to be okay with not having little things that were important to me. I kept working and working and working on the relationship. I’d break up with him, then take him back, then repeat the process. It was exhausting, and I was miserable, and I stayed in it because I was terrified of being alone. Mostly, I just didn’t think I could have a good relationship, so I should be happy with what I did have.

2) I was five pounds lighter, but my foot still ached every time I walked even a little over a mile. It was like a sharp spear of pain in my foot. (The one I broke.)

3) I just started writing a new book that I posted online called “Tunnel Vision”.

4) I’d been in my new house for just a few months.

5) I was still trying to figure out how to be strong in a relationship.

6) I was teaching summer classes at Kendall.


This year….


1) I’m engaged to a terrific guy who loves me and treats me well, and has all those ‘little’ qualities that are important to me. When I say ‘little qualities’ I actually mean qualities that are a big deal to me. He’s empathetic, kind, emotional, masculine, supportive, and loves me exactly as I am, even with the extra five pounds. I don’t have to work at the relationship because we’re a good match. We respect each other, cherish each other, support each other.

2) Okay. I was five pounds lighter. But I wasn’t happy then. I am now. And happiness is harder to achieve than losing weight. I’m back to working out now and ran a few miles last week. It’s taken over a year and a half for my foot to heal enough to handle this. But finally, after a year and a half, there’s no more pain in my foot.

3) I wrote THE END on “Tunnel Vision” last week. I also finished “Foodies Rush In” in November. I’m rewriting both novels and looking for an agent and publication. Next month, I hope to start on book #6.

4) I’ve been in my home for over a year. I love it. It’s the safest, nicest place I’ve ever lived, and now it’s a home to me, Kealoha, and my kiddos.

5) I’ve finally figured out how to be strong. Not just in a relationship (although Kealoha makes it easy) but in ALL my relationships. I’ve discovered that curious thing called ‘boundaries’. I should get a blue ribbon in therapy.

6) I finished my summer classes at Kendall and for the first time in over two years of nonstop constant working, I am taking a week-long vacation. It’s a staycation, because I’m staying home. I’m reading, writing, re-energizing.


My point is, that no matter where you are in your life right now, it helps to see where you’ve been. So much can happen in a year. Sure, I’m older and a little heavier now, and I still haven’t achieved all the things I want…but I’m happy.

I don’t know what’s going to happen this year, but I do know that Kealoha and I are getting married, I’m going to keep writing and trying to get published, I’m going to keep trying to improve on teaching and narrating, I’m going to hug and squeeze my kiddos as much as possible…and…well….so far, it looks like I’m going to keep on being happy.

Just a year. But, man, what a difference a year makes. And according to Dinah Washington...you don't even need a year. You just need twenty-four hours and your whole world can change. Let's hope for the better. :)