Do you remember back in the day, oh, maybe 20 years ago, when people wrote their annual Christmas letter and inserted it into their Christmas cards? It was basically a year of bragging placed onto a sheet of 8 1/2" x 11" paper. For those not in the know, it would go something like:
Hello from the Braverman family. Gosh, the year has flown by. Margaret got a 4.0 for the past three semesters, and in AP classes to boot! David was MVP of his football team, and scored the touchdown that one states. I got a promotion at work, and my lovely wife Helga learned how to knit and quilt.
Okay, I'm being unfair. The letters were much longer than that. Seriously, though, they were as braggy as ever. I am sorry to say that I wrote a similar letter a year or two in a row, before I became a mother and realized how self-centered those letters were.
Imagine if we all wrote our year in review Christmas letter, but wrote it honestly -- no b.s. Without divulging anyone else's personal information (meaning this will be all about me), here's my version of the honest (or to be fair, sarcastic and negative) Christmas letter...
Greetings from the Domestic Goddess!
I hope that this letter finds you well, and that you are enjoying the holiday season. Things are copacetic here, I guess, though sleep's been hard to come by. It seems that the minute I get my house in order, WHAM, it gets shitted up again. There are dust bunnies in every corner, unmatched socks in clean-clothes hampers, and specks of sugar in the raw in random spots in the house (I know because my bare feet feel the sugar every night).
Anyway, it's been a wild ride for us here. I spent the first half of the year with a horrible ringing ear (tinnitus) that was wrongly diagnosed as Meniere's Disease, and it went so haywire by Father's Day that I questioned my ability to live with it, only to later find out that it was due to hormonal fluctuations and that I was (wait for it) in menopause. At 41. Er.
I gained a few pounds, lost a few friends, and found myself in a shit storm or two. While I don't miss the lost friends or the shit storms, I do wish I could lose the pounds.
I haven't worked out at all this year, and I can say with assurance that I've let it all go to pot. Will I resolve to go back to the gym for 2012, like all the other morons (read it "Moe-rons" like CamDiaz says in the movie, Bad Teacher), only to fall off the wagon within a week or two? Probably. But saying that would be self-defeating.
I had to call the cops for help twice, both times because wacky moms (different ones) don't understand that money doesn't buy one the right to act without restraint, and that you can't pull over, get out of your car and yell at someone, or call and harass them on the phone, without having to suffer corrective consequences.
Oh, I almost forgot. I got a ticket for talking on the cellphone while driving from work to pick up lunch this summer. That was a fun $100+ ticket. I am such an a-hole because I know better. Lord, what was I thinking? I also got a parking ticket for being 2 minutes over the meter in Montclair. Again, my fault for not feeding the meter.
There was the horrible Hurricane Irene that blew through and flooded out my friends' homes and businesses, and then a snowstorm hit a month later, in October. Let me see, do we still think global warming is either a myth, or a good thing? Carbon footprints are everywhere, and those trips to the mall (STOP GOING ALREADY) doesn't help anybody or anything. Shop local, and buy American! Our economy needs you to show some loyalty to the craftsmen and independent store owners of our country. I'm a liberal and I'm writing that. You know it must be bad, if I'm writing that.
I'd love to list some major accomplishments, but I just can't. The well is tapped...
The good news is that I've stopped reading those self-help books that make people (temporarily) restructure their lives, like The Secret, because the fact of the matter is that I know what I need to do to get things done, successfully, and I don't need another New Age guru making millions off of his repackaged, repetitive message to understand that. Same holds for diet and exercise trends. If I don't do what I need to do, it's my own damn fault.
We had a fun summer, me, W and the kids. We visited LBI, and the Grand Cascades Lodge, and Rhode Island. I didn't get tan, try as I might, so I ended up trying a self-tanner. I was a blotchy mess.
This fall, I got to go with my mom, dad, and son, to Disney, and it was truly magical. We stayed in a gorgeous room on the beach, the weather was perfect if not a bit on the hot side, and attended the Not So Scary Halloween party. Raise the roof, baby.
And now, here we are again. It's almost Christmas. I don't have a Christmas tree yet, but the grill of my car has a wreath with a red bow on it. Festive-ish?
2011 has been nothing to write home about, try as I might. Hopefully next year's letter will read more like a good bio. And to put the kibosh on what ALF says will be the end of the world, I will send it out the day after the world ends, on 12/21/12.