The Future is Wide Open

The power is finally back on at work.

They haven’t brought our DNS servers back up yet, so I can’t get to our own websites, but I sure can get to the Internet. Heh.

It’s been a rather surreal couple of days due to the power outage. Yesterday and this morning were the peak of it of course, sitting here in a quiet, nearly empty, half-dark office, just … waiting. Waiting for updates, waiting for something to happen. Just waiting.

I’m not very good at waiting.

This morning at least, I got some reading done that I wouldn’t have gotten to otherwise. XML really is cool stuff. I’m looking forward to learning more and becoming proficient at creating XML documents.

There will be a fair amount of backlog to catch up on in the next few days, but for today, the company is being cool. They’re buying us lunch and we’re closing at 3pm. Despite the oddness of all this waiting, it’s been kind of nice to have a some days “off” for free.

Now if I could just stop coughing all night and soothe poor Vic’s teething pains so we could all get some sleep, that’d just be peachy.

I’m feeling a little shell-shocked today, as a matter of fact. A side effect of lack of sleep and the sudden arrival of the end of the year. This always seems to happen to me. After Christmas, I think there’s all this time before the New Year but there really isn’t. Then before I know it, it’s the 31st and I’m staring the change in the date in the face.

A lot of folks are writing “Year in Review” entries, and I’m somewhat feeling the need to do the same, though for the most part, I actualy have other things on my mind. A man was handing out flyers at BART this morning about patriotism and different definitions of what it means to be a patriot and how dissent with the current government’s stance isn’t anti-patriotic. There were some claims in the flyer that I thought were rather interesting. But I’m actually having some trouble putting together my thoughts coherently, so I guess it’ll wait for a later day.

Okay. So. 2003 in review.

Let’s see.

Most of this year for me, was about the continuing struggle to balance the demands of work with being a mom and trying to stay sane while juggling both committments. I mostly sat on the sideline and watched the development of the situation in Iraq with feelings of foreboding and helplessness. I’m still feeling a little bit uncomfortable about the fact that I’ve become so passive about what’s going on in the world. I feel as if it’s all so far above my head, far out of the reach of my meager hands.

I was sick a fair amount this year – different kinds of sick too, from stomach issues all the way through to the dreaded flu. Unfortunately, this means that my stack of PTO days is back where it was at the same time last year – meaning, non-existent. I really hate not having any vacation time.

The year kicked off with us recovering from the flu that we had while sequestered in a small apartment up in Lake Tahoe and proceeded with us going to see “The Two Towers” at long last, in the theater, with Vic. That worked out relatively well actually, though since I’ve seen the movie again on DVD, I’ve realized that I missed a bit by needing to walk around with the baby when he got restless.

April was a relatively busy month – we were sick, we saw my good friend Smita for a visit, I participated in WalkAmerica and Sabs got into cooking school. That last bit really changed the face of our lives for the last half of the year. Since May, it’s been all about trying to juggle my work schedule, Vic’s daycare schedule and Sabs’ class schedule. It’s all hope for the future though, a breath of hope that Sabs will be able to find a job that he likes.

Victor turned a year old in early May just before Sabs started school and his birthday ushered in a series of big changes for him, as well as for me. He started walking at 14 months, I was able to stop pumping shortly afterward and his verbal development began to kick into high gear not long after that as well. He also shifted from being a relatively easy baby to being a somewhat demanding toddler. We’ve struggled a lot with separation anxiety, tantrums and the overall battle of wills that tends to characterize the toddler period. People talk about the “terrible twos”, but really, that phase can begin long before age two as I’ve found out.

At the end of May, Vic and I were in a car accident, effectively undoing years of work on my part to be less of a freaker when being in a car either as a passenger or a would-be driver. Otherwise, the summer was relatively quiet, except for the big office move at work. There were other things that were eventful at work, a lot of people in my department left the company, a lot of projects came down the pipeline and in September we hired another Web Developer. It’s been nice to pow-wow with a true colleague again and overall it’s made some parts of work more interesting again.

In August, I went to the nurse-in in Berkeley with Aimee and was stunned by the number of people who turned up for it and the huge variety of strollers, slings and other baby carriers that I saw at the event. At the end of August, we started packing up to move to Walnut Creek. That move is still hanging over my head in many ways, even though the apartment has finally started to look homey and “ours”. I miss Berkeley every day and I have a lot of regrets about packing up our little family to make the move to save money.

Victor started daycare after the move and that was a really traumatic experience for all of us. The first daycare just did not work out. Thankfully we found N. relatively quickly and everything worked out beautifully after that. I still feel a little bit guilty though, about putting Victor through that 2 weeks of hell with daycare #1.

In October there was the recall election. I voted against the recall, but my views are apparently typical of the area of California that I live in, but not of the state at large. I’ve had to glumly accept the fact that The Terminator is now my governor and I’m still eyeing that whole situation carefully to gauge the repercussions.

Overall in the last year and a half I’ve become much more politically involved. I guess I feel like it’s one of the few ways that I can try to make my voice heard, try to make a difference, despite ballot scandals and mutterings that the electoral process in this country has been compromised.

Last month I tried to do NaNoWriMo and didn’t get much of anywhere with it. I wrote quite a lot but lacked time to transcribe in order to do a wordcount, so after my first official wordcount entry, I never made any more. I actually have no idea how many words I actually wrote, though I’m pretty sure it was over 10,000 given that I was able to knock out between 1500 and 3000 words a day based on that initial wordcount.

This last month of the year ushered in more sickness, more troubles with teething for Victor, lack of sleep for me, and at long last, the end of “The Lord of the Rings”. An event long anticipated, and now, sadly over. Just like the end of the movie, I feel all bittersweet about the end of the trilogy at the cinema, even though we should be getting the extended edition sometime next November.

At the end of this year, I have no particular resolutions to make, nothing specific that I’m aiming for. I feel like I’m sort of in holding pattern. We have a lot of things in the hopper to look forward to, but they’re all on hold until Sabs finishes school. I guess really, that’s all that I’m holding on for, a day in May when Sabs’ classes will be over and then a day in August when he completes his externship. Until then I’m just hanging on, doing what I have to, to get by.

After that, the future is wide open.