I don’t entirely believe in fresh starts at the beginning of the year – time is a continuum. But it’s a good marker for making plans and reflecting, all the same.
Last year I had a resolution to average 40 active minutes per day, measured on a weekly basis. Except for when I was ill I managed this very well until the point where we got a dog. 2021 was very much the year of dog. The decision to get one, the waiting for the litter, watching the progress as the puppies grew, and then BAM, dog owners.
It’s been more work than I ever anticipated. I’ve become a bore with little else to talk about. But she’s making decent progress and life is starting to settle down again. Our main challenges are getting her to walk well on the lead, and stopping her from barking at everything. We’re slowly working through her food intolerances and figuring out what’s good for her and what isn’t. She’s a handful, but a worthwhile one.
The year petered out on a low. We’ve not done much since the start of the pandemic. We did get a break away this year in Great Yarmouth where my mum was living, but that was a little odd. We’ve done it semi regularly for years, this was the first time with a dog, and probably the last time as a whole as my mum lost her husband this year and will be moving back to the midlands, so the family won’t converge near her for holidays.
We had a plan to visit Jonny’s family in December which was damaged somewhat by the terrible news late in the year that Jonny’s grandad, Wilf, was hospitalised, followed by his demise. The break became overshadowed by the funeral that turned out to coincide with our booked time. I’d booked time off work for this and made it a long block to take me through December and into the new year. At the funeral (or so I believe) I contracted covid which dampened the restful period over Christmas. As I recovered, Jonny succumbed. I’m on track to be healthy again as we return to work. The poor dog hasn’t had a walk in weeks, we’re exercising her by making her run for individual bits of kibble and giving her the odd outing to the garden. As soon as I get a clear LFT I’ll be walking her – technically I could already but I’m trying to be more responsible than that.
On the work side I had good news this year. I did well in reviews and self assessment and secured a pay rise, shortly followed by successfully applying for a promotion. I have an odd mix of imposter syndrome and self confidence vying for my attention, along with intentions to upskill that rarely see fruition because of how busy I am.
There are obstacles in the way but another plan on a backburner is a move back to the midlands (Jonny keeps reminding me that for him it’s not “back”, he never lived there). I’d like to be closer to family and hobbies and potentially to friends. London is not massive but traversing it is difficult and I think it’s not where we want to be any more. The obstacles look like they may well go away, so we’re hopeful, although the stress of a house move is not entirely welcome.
With the ongoing pandemic, uncertainty over where we’ll live when, and the continuation of dog training, it’s hard to focus on goals that might be manageable. I’d like to get fitter and slimmer in the coming months, but the first aim is to shake the covid fully and then figure out where I stand. January often looks dark and gloomy, I’m glad the days are lengthening and looking forward to getting out a bit.
I’m not firming up any solid goals related to it, but I’d like to record a bit more here for accountability and to be able to look back in days to come. Once upon a time, before we were even forced to do everything remotely, LiveJournal was a lot like a social life. It meant that through socialising I effectively had a written record of my life. I’d like to recapture that written record, though I think the social side of things is scattered across Facebook, Twitter and Discord, or simply lost.