Wednesday, April 1, 2009

But Seriously Folks...

A lot has happened to me in the past year or so.

I finished my first year of MBA classes. I lost five pounds. I moved twice. I taught Panther to sit, lay, and stay. I got engaged. I got my hours cut at work. I failed at job searching. I went on a ride-along with the cop. I bought new tires for my car. I hit 500 posts on my blog. I bought a new laptop. I spent one full year at Police Wives Online. I faced two deaths in my family and one in the cop’s. I planned an entire wedding. I fought with my father. I grew closer to my mother. And I single-handedly kept Lean Cuisine’s out of stock at the grocery store. All without buying one single pair of jeans.

It is ridiculous how fast life has moved these past few years, and at the risk of making this post sound like an elementary school end-of-year paper, I’m going to tell you…

The Top 10 Things I’ve Learned in the Past Year

10. Dog poop in the house, no matter how small it is, can stink up an entire room for hours, even if it is removed right away.
9. A good jeweler will offer to clean any jewelry you have on while you look around their store, even if you didn’t buy any of it from them.
8. Using a crystal candy dish that clangs loudly when opened deters people from eating all your candy.
7. Getting an MBA has nothing to do with your ability to learn everything from your business classes. It has everything to do with the ability to afford a degree and not die of boredom while pursuing it.
6. No matter how much a father spends time with his daughter, he will never understand the utility of a great pair of pumps or the significance of a wedding dress. Thank God for moms.
5. You cannot worry about people who hate you. Even if you fix the reason they hate you, they will find another. And if they hate you no matter how much time has passed, it is really that they hate themselves. To forgive is one of the hardest things a person can do, especially to forgive yourself.
4. A real friend is not defined by how much time you spend with them, but by how confident you are that they will know when they are needed the most.
3. Watching my wonderful, fun-loving fiancĂ© go into “cop mode” is the most hilarious thing I have ever witnessed in my entire life – giving proof to the phrase “If you think cops are scary, you should meet their wives.”
2. Sympathy for a widow is not just an emotion anymore. It is a cause for action and for love. It is a shared feeling of loss and grief and weakness. It is a call for solidarity. It is a reminder of what I have and should not take for granted.
1. When you open yourself up to experiences that are beyond your control, that scare you, or that make you remember your own mortality – when you do things that test you, that you may fail at, or that make you think in ways you never had before – when you try something that was not planned or that you thought would be too hard – THAT is when you really learn something about yourself. For me, I found strength I never knew I had.

I know, I know. I got all philosophical on you, but it’s definitely been a long and interesting year for me. The past few weeks have seemed especially exhausting, but I find strength in knowing I am loved.

Note to Self: “When you get to the end of all the light you know and it's time to step into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing that one of two things shall happen: either you will be given something solid to stand on, or you will be taught how to fly.” - Edward Teller


SarahM said...

im glad u are being reflective .
and thank for the post. im still freaking out. but ill make it.

the Grit said...

Hi MJ,

On the dog poop issue, I think you are feeding the wrong food. Ours mess in the house frequently, and I never smell it. Of course, it could be possible that decades of smoking has ruined my sense of smell, so perhaps you should take the habit up?

the Grit

Anonymous said...

I love the quote at the end of your post. So true! Wonderful post, my dear.

pure evyl said...

I worry more about the people that actually like me.

Scott said...

You can get all philosophical on me, anytime--your list is wonderful!

Now I know why I've always wanted to work in a jewelry store (aside from the fact that I'd be surrounded by women)--I can polish your jewelry, on your person, and get away with it!

I also love the one about the glass candy dish--but that never kept me from eating it all, as a kid, and still doesn't! I'm 43-- yet every time I visit my parents' house, they have to hide most of the candy!

Maki said...

Aww I love this post, MJ!!!

How many of us really reflect on ourselves and make the list of the things we've learned past year? I can say that I haven't..

Well, it's going to be another great year for you - your wedding is getting closer!!!


Franco said...

omg I know life is so ughhh quick, it seems like i graduated highschool just yesterday, ugh,

monica said...

great post - really makes one get all reflective and thoughtfull.. noone should never take anything ( or anyone) for granted.

colbymarshall said...

good post, love. It is truly amazing how much can happen in one year.

MJ said...

Sarah - Glad to know you'll get through.

Grit - Nah. I'll take the smell of poo over smoke any day.

KM - Thanks!

PE - LOL. Yes, there must definitely be something wrong.

Scott - Glad you liked it!

Maki - I know! The date is definitely sneaking up on me!

Franco - I still remember high school graduation like it was yesterday... and college graduation... ugh.

Monica - Agreed.

CM - No kidding.