If I were asked to sum up 2012 in one word, what leaps to mind immediately is “hard.” I’m reluctant to put that down in writing, because in the grand scheme, I have such an easy life. First world problems. But c’est la vie – it is what it is.
With that in mind, here are my answers to the annual questions, which I encourage you to answer for yourself, and share with me if you’re so moved – I’d love to hear what you have to say.
1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before?
Skinny dip in a quarry, get waaaaay too many mammograms, see Van Halen in concert (about damn time!), watch the sun set over Maine while drinking a G&T on the tallest point of the island, surrounded by lovely people, make ten dozen raviolis and recite Marc Antony’s “Friends, Romans, countrymen…” speech to a stellar group of friends, emcee an event with three world-class speakers, perform a quite lousy synchronized swimming routine on the lawn at Volunteer Park.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
My 2013 resolution is to take more risks. (Caveat: this does not mean I’ll be bungee jumping or skydiving anytime soon!)
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
YES! Beautiful Margot Louise Jacobs arrived in September.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, but the year ended with a series of horrific gun deaths which must lead to real change.
5. What countries did you visit?
I was within the borders of the USA all year long.
6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
A real date?
7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
September 15th – I was privileged to attend a glorious wedding in Maine; September 28th – I got clocked by a very large gate; November 4th – a trifecta of satisfying election outcomes; November 9th – I met someone in my “karass.”
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Leading with empathy, kindness and authenticity.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Leading with arrogance, annoyance and false humility.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Boy howdy. A l-a-r-g-e iron-and-wood gate fell and knocked me over, bruising a kidney, some ribs, and assorted limbs in the process. While it wasn’t ultimately serious, it was painful for a long time and it scared the bejeezus out of me.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Airline tickets to New York, Maine and Washington.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
The voters in Washington, Maryland and Maine.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
14. Where did most of your money go?
Living a good life.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Willow’s and Karen’s wedding(s). Pub trivia. The election. Future professional possibilities. An email string.
16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
Some Nights – Fun.; American Tune – Paul Simon
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Sadder, but I’m fairly certain that’s temporary
b) thinner or fatter? I think the same….
c) richer or poorer? Well, on paper it looks better….
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Spending time with the people that I love.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying about work.
20. How did you spend Christmas?
Christmas Eve with friends-who-are-family, eating fabulous food and flirting with the twin two-year-olds. Christmas Day with the fam at my little sis’s home on the family compound. I danced to “Living La Vida Loca” and there’s filmography that I pray never sees the light of day. My bro-in-law’s prime rib and mac and cheese makes me do crazy things.
21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
With the idea of someone….
22. What was your favorite TV program?
This year Parks & Rec made me laugh out loud most consistently, which is what I’m looking for in TV shows most of the time. But I’ve got to give props to The Colbert Report as well. The man is a genius.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Hate is a word that I reserve for icky foods and annoying music.
24. What was the best book you read?
I really liked Stephen King’s 11.22.63, Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle, Tia Obrecht’s The Tiger’s Wife, Maria Semple’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette and M.L. Stedman’s The Light Between Oceans. But my favorite was The Fault in our Stars by John Green.
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
26. What did you want and get?
A successful conference.
27. What did you want and not get?
A stress-free conference.
28. What was your favorite film of this year?
The Silver Linings Playbook and The Perks of Being a Wallflower, I think. It was a great year for film. Also, I saw Brief Encounter for the first time and loved it.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 41 in 2012 and had a series of celebrations with my amazing friends, including one memorable meal at The Pink Door.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?
Skirts and dresses.
32. What kept you sane?
My therapist, 200mg of Zen, exercise, writing, my amazing friends.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
My love for the Obamas is evergreen.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
Healthcare, gun control, education.
35. Who did you miss?
For the first time in 15 years, I did not get to see Fred over the summer, and it bummed me out.
36. Who was the best new person you met?
While we met many years ago, there was one person whom I became better acquainted with this year, and that’s been interesting, for sure.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.
I am my own worst critic.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Many’s the time I’ve been mistaken, and many times confused
And I’ve often felt forsaken, and certainly misused.
But it’s all right, it’s all right, I’m just weary to my bones
Still, you don’t expect to be bright and bon vivant
So far away from home.