I know this is the time of year that everyone starts setting resolutions for themselves for the coming year. I don't believe in New Year's resolutions. I believe in setting small, achievable goals for yourself that get you to your dreams, whether it takes one year or one hundred. I'm just horrible at follow through. Being unemployed and without the ability to drive for the past three months has given me a lot of time to think. And to wallow in self-pity at times. I really do want to start changing some things in my life, though. I know it sounds horribly cliqued, but having exhausted all of my regular weekly on demand shows, I noticed they had stopped charging for The Biggest Loser episodes. I've always liked catching the marathons and watching people literally save their own lives. I do get annoyed when they start crying or saying they're going to quit. I just want to look and them and shout, "YOU choose to do this, YOU signed up for this ride and YOU knew what you were getting yourself into, so suck it up and get over it or leave!" I know its hard, and I know everyone has bad days, but I know that if I got an opportunity to be on the show, I would literally and metaphorically work my ass off. Pain I can deal with. After two surgeries on my leg, a steel plate and pins added, one pin removed and dealing with arthritis in my ankle at 29, I can deal. There's a part of me that wants to go running to the website and apply, but I don't know that I'm willing to leave my life for three months anymore. Two years ago, sure. Two years ago I was trying to go teach English in Japan, but now I'm not so sure. Which leads me to my first set of goals and dreams.
I want to lose weight, and be nicer to my body. I've already made the promise to myself that when I get a job, I'm signing up at a gym here, and I will use that membership. If the one I'm going to sign up at has any kind of an ad or friend finder board, the first thing I'm going to do is post that I need a workout buddy. We don't have to work out every single time together, but I need someone who also wants someone there to make them accountable. From infomation from their website they seem to have a pretty good support system in place. Granting that I didn't overlook any small print, you have free access to personal trainers, and while they're not open 24 hours a day, they are open seven days a week. This isn't one of those, "oh, bikini season is coming up, I need to tighten my abs!" kind of things. I haven't jumped on the scale lately, but I need to lose anywhere from 150-180 pounds. Its so scary and daunting, but I need to do this for me. I need to love myself enough to carry through with it as well. I've gotten so used to being taken as a joke, that I think I've started to look at myself as a bit of a joke, as well. Its not to the life or death point yet, as slovenly as I've let myself get, I'm not completly out of shape. I used to walk up to three miles a day to get to one of my old jobs. So I know I'm capable.
As much as I'd like to deny it, I guess I do have some daddy issues. My father always drilled into me that I come last, I have to take care of my mom, my brother, my grandma, those less fortunate, before I can think of myself. Anytime I talked about wanting something more than what I had for myself, I was told I was being selfish. And for someone who doesn't really want kids, I have a pretty strong "maternal" instinct. I want to take care of and be there for those I love. So I have to start making some changes in my life, or I might not be there to take care of folks. I've put myself last for so long, and I need to be selfish for a litte bit.
Not that I believe for a second that he actually feels this way, but on the shallow side, I'd like to be someone my boyfriend is proud to have walking beside him. I want my "in-laws" to be proud to have me in their life. I want my parents to be proud of me. Most of all, I want me to be proud of me. I don't want to be that sad fat girl that everyone sniggers at walking down the street anymore. I know that losing weight will not solve all of my problems, but I feel like if I can finally make an honest commitment to myself and stick with it, it will show me that I am more capable than I give myself credit for. I have short-sold myself for far too long, and its time to stop underestimating myself and prove to myself just how much I have to offer.
My second goal is to get my book edited, finalized, and out there for people to potentially buy. I don't need to be the next J.K. Rowlings, but one of my biggest dreams for a long time is to be a successful, published author. I started- and completed!- the first step by resolving to participate and win this year's NaNoWriMo contest. The deal is, starting November 1 you start writing a new, original novel. You can have an outline, storyline, brainstorming, characterizations, etc. drawn up before then, but you can't actually start writing until the first. The goal is to write 50,000 words by midnight on the 30th. You don't have to finish the novel, but to win you have to hit that mark. Well, I won. I finished my novel at something like quarter to five in the morning of the 29th. I was seriously behind for a while because I didn't actually start writing until the ninth. I not only hit my word count, but finished the first draft of the novel. I finished the challenge with a total of 52 thousand and some change words. And for finishing I got the best prize I think they could have bestowed to any of us. A free proof copy of the novel from Amazon and CreateSpace. You have until June or July to make use of the offer, which gives you a chance to clean it up and have it finalized before you redeem it. They'll send you a proof copy of your book in paperback form. Through CreateSpace you also have to opportunity to allow Amazon to sell your book. They'll put it out there so when someone searches for books in that genere or topic, yours will show up. Not a bad start to a get a writing career kicked off. So now I have to commit to myself to edit the book and get it ready to be published. Finishing my novel was the proudest day of my life. Even more so than graduating college. I graduated college for my family. I was the first one to either go or graduate, so I felt I had to finish for them. This is for me. This is my dream, and even if it never sells any more copies than the ones I'm going to buy for my parents, I don't care. Its my book, and knowing that I have actually written more opens the door for me to write another one. And you only get better with practice.
My last goal is a much more boring and serious one. And that is to get my credit cleaned up. I bruised it up pretty bad in college, so as soon as I have some gainful employment, I will be setting aside as much of every paycheck as I can, and when I've accumulated enough to pay something completely off, it will be done. I think about going shopping, updating my wardrobe (which really is pretty shabby at this point), catching up on book series I'm behind, getting a massage (I've never had one, and with all the stress of the past year, I could use one!), or the myriad other things I'd LIKE to do with my money, I NEED to get myself financially solid again. Grady and I want to buy a house. We want to go on vacation. His car is ten years old, at some point he's going to need a new one. So I am promising to myself, one bad debt at a time, to get myself back on the right track. It will suck not having new toys or clothes for a while, but the stress of that burden, and how it will feel to have it lifted, that will make it worth it.
I have three, what feel like lofty, goals to accomplish. They won't happen in the next year, well, the book will, but the other two are going to take dedication, work and perserverance, and I think by going through this process I will find myself, and my self worth again. There is nothing wrong in my life that I can't fix. Except for the job, I can't force someone to hire me, but I trust one will come. I have the power and the right to make my own little world a better place for me to be, and in return, it will allow me to take care of everyone else better. So here's to new life resolutions, and taking back the power to make them happen. Cheers!