I am not one for New Year's resolutions, but when 2014 began, and owing to a lot of work I had done in the self-improvement department, I set some objectives for myself. These goals spoke to my interest in bettering myself personally and professionally and, while ambitious, I thought if I met some, but not all of them, it would mark a good year. They were:
- Get a raise at work;
- Get a promotion at work;
- Date emotionally available women;
- Write something on my blog that receives 1,000 page views; and
- Display my photography publicly.
Well, I went 5 for 5. The raise and promotion went hand-in-hand, I went out with women who were emotionally available (and, yes, in fairness, a few who were not), wrote about Pumpkin (4,517 page views and counting!) and showed my photography at an art exhibit and received several nice compliments on my work.
I wish I felt better about these accomplishments, but I do not. I try to tell myself that work is its own reward. I have an unusual job that is tailor-made to my talents and work with gifted people who are as committed as I am to our clients' success. In dating, I focus on the process and not the outcome - that is, if I am open and honest, present and giving, and clear in what I want, need and offer, that that is all I can ask for - but it does not salve the quiet nights at home alone or the emptiness of not being able to share all the other good stuff going on in my life with someone who is invested in it, in me.
So while it is nice to have a complete stranger look at one of my photos, lean over to her boyfriend and say "ooh, that's a nice one," it means less knowing I do not have a someone of my own with whom to share those small moments. I love Pumpkin dearly and share how much she has enriched my life with people online and in real life, but she needs a "mom" who loves her as much as her "dad" does.
This is not to say I am not grateful for the things I have or the comfort my job affords me, but I earned those things - worked hard, put in extra time, and sure, got a few breaks along the way - but they did not magically fall into my lap. So, on the days that are not red letter, when the weight of my responsibilities at work or choices I have to make in my life feel like they are too much to bear, when, as a friend has said, you just need a hug, it is not an easy thing to open your front door and know none is forthcoming.
I did a lot of good work this year, was good to a lot of people, and had a lot of very interesting experiences; I just wish I could appreciate it instead of feeling like so much of it is meaningless without someone to share it with.