Monday, January 4, 2010

It's the most horrible time of the year

Am I the only one who finds the first week back after New Year's the bleakest of them all? The festivities are over, we're all trudging back to the normal routine, the winter weather is suddenly no longer charming, and we're all realizing that the egg nog and candies have indeed had their effect on our waistlines. Right now my den has become "De-Holiday-ication Central," complete with a 7" desiccated Douglas Fir and more bags of discounted holiday paraphernalia than I care to admit to. And through it all, I just keep nibbling on the leftover gingerbread men and red, green and silver chocolate kisses.

The day before we left for Christmas weekend, December 23rd, I had my prescription for migraine medicine filled at our local pharmacy. I just picked it up yesterday. They had messed it up, billing it incorrectly and giving the incorrect amount of pills. It took 2 hours this morning to sort it out.

The weather outside is frightful, no? We don't even have it that bad compared to the rest of the region; we're in the 20s with flurries. My recollection is that this same time last year we were having days in which the temperature stayed sub-zero around the clock. Still, the clouds won't break and it's making things a bit dreary.

Just yesterday, my oldest daughter, a high school sophomore, brought me a note from her orchestra conductor. The note came home two weeks ago, of course, but I was just getting it on January 3rd. The message? She needs to perform her solo piece with accompaniment at a school recital in a week. There are two catches: she's not ready to perform it...and I'm her accompanist. I hadn't even looked at the music until I saw the note. Eep.

The laundry is piled up in the basement, the kitchen is a mess, the baby is turning 5 months old this week and I STILL have not sent out birth announcements. I've been trying to hang window treatments in the den and in the nursery for months to no avail and we're still trying to solve the problem of sweating windows throughout the house (maybe it's an unknown setting on the humidifier we had installed in March?).

My birthday is coming up in 3 weeks and I'm feeling old. And fat. And tired.

And yet...

In each of these annoyances, isn't there a blessing?

I have a home, one I have wanted for years. The first home my husband and I have ever shared, even though we were married for three years before having one home we called "ours." More than that, it is more than I could have ever dreamed I would have. Plenty of space, lots of comfy corners, and beautiful wildlife that visit every day.

We have a driveway that needs to be cleared if we want to drive out of the house. But we have a car and a driveway and places to go in the car.

We have clothing to put on our backs to keep us warm. More than we need, in fact. We should donate some of our less-used coats and sweaters to a charity. Especially at this cold time of year.

I have health insurance with prescription coverage. And I can afford the co-pay. Yes, I could bitch all day about how broken the system is when it takes so long to get the medicine I need. But five years ago, I was suffering without the medicine, dealing with migraine pain with overdoses of OTC pain medicines because I didn't have sufficient insurance coverage. I'm definitely better off than I was five years ago.

About a year ago, I got a piano for free through our community's freecycle. Because of this, I have been able to enjoy making music in my more dismal moments. Sure, I've got to practice my head off in order to perform with my daughter in a week, but it's a simple pleasure that doesn't present itself often. It's a pleasure I wouldn't have at all if someone else hadn't given their piano to me.

We had a wonderful gift-giving season, full of family time and plentiful provisions. Food was flowing, and the smiles were all around. The gifts were spot-on and I went out today donning all new clothing. Clothing that fit around my broad belly. My broad belly that really isn't that broad, but I'd like to believe that I should have my 25-year-old body back despite my lack of discipline.

There, now. I think I've gotten my head screwed back on straight-like. A new year full of blessings.


Heather said...

Great perspective. Happy new year to you and yours!

Heather T said...

Happy New Year to you, Heather!