Q01

Describe a significant experience that has happened in the past year. How did it affect you? Are you grateful? Relieved? Resentful? Inspired?

Gashaw's death was definitely the most significant experience of my last year. I was a wreck. I truly loved the kid and was so incredibly shocked by the news. We had just come off such a high together at Carnival only 6 weeks earlier--he was so full of life (on that trip and just always), more so than anyone else I knew. That's what made his death so tragically ironic. Like most of my friends, I think his death was the first one of a peer's that we had to deal with. I had never once considered it before. He was going to be my friend for life and that had been well established. We were gonna travel together this Thanksgiving, we were gonna go to Carnival again in 2019, he was gonna be the life of the party at my wedding, my kids were gonna fall in love with Uncle Gash just like all kids who met him. He was meant to be there with me every step of the way. What was it like having all those experiences wiped from the realm of possibility in one instant? I still have no words to describe it. I certainly can't say that I'm grateful for the experience. I'd give anything in the world to have him back. But there was positivity to come out of his passing. The community of friends and family that he had indirectly connected for so many years finally came together. There was more laughing and smiling and teasing during his "funeral week" than I ever could have imagined. It was his bright energy shining through us, even in the darkest of times. I want to remember that energy and carry it with me. It can be a way of honoring him. Never being afraid to see hello, always talking to the person in the room whose not talking to anyone else, putting friends first. There's too many lessons to list. But they are and were very valuable lessons. So while I can't say I'm grateful, I can say that I learned a lot of those lessons about life, love, happiness and whatever other cheesy shit is ultimately most important. So there's that.

The most salient experience is my grandfather's death - partially because it happened so recently, but also because I came to realize that he meant quite a lot to me in spite of his somewhat traditional outlook on life. I think his death affected me more deeply than I expected even though I knew his health was rapidly declining and that meant his death was imminent. 1. It gave me a little more perspective on life... what it means to make the most of your years, because life is ultimately finite. 2. My parents are every bit as human as I am- I think I looked up to them as revered authority figures, but they cry too, are vulnerable, and can feel pain like I do. They too need to be comforted in the way that they comforted me when I was a child. 3. To love deeply is painful, to feel loss in the pit of your stomach reveals the depth of your love.

moving - what a big year of moving away from my core life experiences. So far so good!

As much as I don't want to give him significance, I had a relationship for 6-7 months of the last year. That was significant. I'm still healing from the fallout. I'm angry (actually, as I write these very words, I don't feel angry, but that changes from day to day), but ultimately I learned a lot and I'm happy it happened as it did. I don't want to date anymore for the time being, but I do in the longrun. I'm both more and less cynical about relationships. I have a better idea of myself, I learned things I didn't know.

The love of my life proposed to me on Christmas Eve, 2016 (the first night of Chanukkah!). He sang "Hooked on a Feeling" and pulled me up to dance with him in the middle of the song, in front of his extended family and friends. On the last line of the song, he got down on one knee and pulled a ring out of his back pocket. I was shocked and overcome with emotions, screaming and nodding and crying all at once as the family went nutso. His dad got the whole thing on camera! Obviously this has been a huge change, but I am so excited and blessed to be planning my wedding and my future with this wonderful, sweet, loving man by my side <3 <3 <3

I'm resentful and quite clearly still hurt over the fact that who I thought was THE ONE, the love of my life, who I could trust forever with anything decided to leave me and couldn't even bother to let me know he was leaving. I was me who had to beg and ask and beg to get something out of him. This is what lack of trust does to a relationship and what my rose-glasses made me overlook. Was I too optimistic? Yes. Did I think I could change him and make the trust between us grow? Yes. Did he trust me? No, because he is deeply hurt over something I'll never understand, something I'll never know about. Reality came to check on us, and the result was that we weren't all that. I put all my hopes on dreams on the boat and it sank, I then spend half my saving to go and look for answers, but there weren't any more that what he had already told me. We fought and we were both resentful about each other actions. I think he could never forgive me for having a past, for my past mistakes and that fact that I wasn't born on the day I met him. He because of his inability to trust shit, less alone me, and that fact that I kept a stupid secret from him for (what I thought was) our well-being and my sanity. After moving put with him at the end of January, we broke up on June 20th, tho it took me shy of 4 months to accept the break up. I'm not the master of forgiveness I wish I was. I fear next time I venture out on a relationship I will be the one to have trust issues. So, short answer, my hot passionate, but short lived relationship with my ex. It affected me deeply. I'm grateful we lived it. I'm still resentful. It left me with zero inspiration to move on and I'm not yet relieved that it is over (tho gladly there are some thing I don't have to deal with anymore, lie judgement). I went "all in" and it left me broken, more broken than I had ever been.

I wouldn't pin this as a single experience, but more as a growing realization. While I am definitely grateful to have the opportunity to test the big waters of academia, I'm not sure at all that it's for me. This summer, sitting in my office day after day, struggling over classes and conference presentations, and collaborative research (minus the actual collaboration) left me feeling anxious and stressed to a point I couldn't have fathomed. I buzzed through my anxiety meds in no time, felt like I was perpetually on the edge of a panic attack, and struggled with nightmares and insomnia. Never, for one moment, did I feel like I was doing enough, or giving enough, or involved enough. Bali was a haven, although even then, emails came in that *absolutely HAD* to be answered in the next 24 hours. If nothing else, Bali gave me the excuse that I was on an island and didn't have the resources to respond quickly. More importantly, the slower pace of life reminded me that quality is in how I spend each day, not in how I *justify* a year of my time to a panel of administrators. Is this what life looks like, if I continue down this path? Because I don't think I want this.

Tom went to the ER on his 59th birthday. The day started with me putting daffodils on the table with a birthday card and him waking up to a beautiful sunshine day. By two in the morning the next day we learned he most likely had an infection. As we sought answers over the coming weeks we soon learned that he had Stage 4 Liver Cancer which metastasized throughout his abdomen. I left work and became his 24 in-home hospice caregiver. I am grateful to have a life in which I was able pause and take off time to care for Tom and be by his side through his sickness, decline, and the hours leading up to and after his death. I am grateful for those who "showed up" to care for Tom's caregiver (me), helping me to find serenity away from the insanity of his dysfunctional family. I learned that having family (7 siblings) doesn't mean people will show up (they didn't until after he had already passed). That people, even friends, may not, sometimes cannot "show up" as they are confronted with mortality in their own way. I am grateful for the many gifts of the senses: colors, shadows, whispers, sour, gentle, wet, fragrance -- perhaps this especially so as these seemed so strongly connected to memories for Tom and it was maybe the last sense he responded. As we drove home from the hospital after receiving his diagnosis the world appeared as if in technicolor - every sense was heightened and despite the news of Tom's imminent death the world is fully alive in every moment, with or without us. I am grateful for the experience of Death and Life as both beautiful and frightening, generous and unfair, smooth and violent. I am grateful to be alive, to have Tom in my life and home for 19years, and for peace and acceptance for the day when I will run out of moments.

Trumps election. I’m extremely confused and concerned.

Many significant events occurred in the past year. The most pressing of which has been our move to a new country ... a country that has a completely different language, culture, and just about everything else. I've had a hard time embracing the adventure of moving to a new country. This came as a surprise to myself I think one thing that has made it tough for me is the unknown aspect of how long we might stay. We became citizens, so the expectation of the country is that we are here for good. I think we both feel that won't be the case, but even the unknown time-frame has been a difficult mind hurdle for me. I know I need to embrace the change and accept all of what comes with that. There are many good things about living here and so I need to let go of the tightness in my chest and my heart to absorb the positive light that exists all around me. Knowing that life here is not permanent should help me relax but I've still had a hard time finding happiness and a new normal. It is coming slowly, I can see it creeping in, so that is good. This move has challenged me in many subtle and not so subtle ways that I did not anticipate or maybe I didn't think through what was to come as much as I should have. At some point I will be able to learn a lesson or many from this experience and all that has happened through and because of it.

I graduated from a nurse practitioner in women's health. I'm a mixture of grateful, relieved, inspired, excited, and scared. Women's health has been at the center of my goals since I started nursing in 2013 and it's kind of crazy and exciting and terrifying to finally reach those goals and realize my career dreams.

After years of writing in these boxes that my goal was to finish my undergraduate degree, I finally DID IT! It was fulfilling in some ways, but mostly anti-climactic. My life did not change overnight and I am still struggling to define my future career path. It was definitely a relief to finally have this monkey off my back, and I definitely feel lighter and more at ease. Unfortunately, this achievement also revealed to me that some close people in my life, namely Kendall, were not rooting for me as much I had hoped, and did not seem to care that I had finally crossed this finish line. I think I will ultimately be grateful that I saw her true colors before I invested more time and energy in our friendship, but I'm still just very sad about it.

I think the most significant experience of the last year has been our move. I'm much happier in Sacramento, I'm taking the bus places, I'm not exactly thriving at the moment, but I'm doing a lot better.

unexpectedly a friend let me stay with her, rent free. i'm still trying to sort divorce, mommy and daddy shit out. And this weird artist that i'm finally free to be. But she gets me and that something i've never known. i'm grateful grateful grateful

With multiple significant experiences this past year (a youngest child turning 18 and graduating from high school, the death's of a niece and a brother-in-law) it has been the 2016 presidential election and its aftermath which has impacted me more than I anticipated. It's been a hard realization that many in the country (including most of my own family) have such a different way of seeing the world than I do. It's felt like a continuous assault on many of my most cherished beliefs and values. It has skewed my view of my country, those in positions of leadership, and those who support them. I am still processing this.

A lot of experiences have affected me this year. One that comes to mind is the appearance of the opportunity to take my "side job" as a yoga teacher towards a business venture by owning / opening a studio. This forced me to think and experience very fast what I want to do, what I can do, my desires and plans in the near and further future. Deciding to let go for now of that opportunity and take smaller steps has been a big relief. Today, the Sunday following that decision, I feel a bit down as if lacking a big goal to work towards. But I also feel relieved to have the time to relax and enjoy the little things. To read, educate myself, and actually work towards going back to school in order to have the necessary knowledge before entering the world of fitness and health.

40 th Wedding Anniversary Attended Getting the Love You Want weekend with husband and left looking forward to 40 more years of marriage. Want to be more loving and less over protective with myself and my family.

This past year I was sick. I still don't really know what happened, or if it was all in my head and a combination of something funky and burnout, but as I sit here my heart essentially skips about every 4th beat. For months I was just fried and exhausted. All summer, I wasn't supposed to get my heart rate over 150, which meant no hiking, a little biking, a tiny bit of running, etc. It forced me to re-evalute some things and to put work aside a bit and focus on what I needed, but it also put me months behind at work. Time I can hardly afford to lose. I hope I can use what happened to help myself find some life balance, I realize that my job is exactly that, a job. I have really no friends, and my family is 1000 miles away. I need to work on creating a new family and actually trying to make friends.

My resolution last year was to forgive myself, truly and utterly, because in the eyes of G-d I was forgiven. My resolutions this year are twofold: 1) to be more clear with my decisions and thought processes (I tend to get shut up when I need to say emotional things) & 2) to work to go back to the days when I always answered how "how are you" with "fantastic" or "wonderful". In short, I want to be more joyful. In the last year, I've found my confidence in my self through teaching - confidence that I know what I am doing and am capable of learning.

I moved away from the town and home I've been living in since my parents died. It's been a while coming, but I finally reached a place, mentally, where living there was becoming actively harmful to my well being, rather than something I felt was necessary to experience. I don't know how to describe quite how I feel. I haven't been able to sell the house my parents and I lived in for most of my life, though I haven't really felt the desire to do so either. I feel trapped, though that may be too strong a word, between enshrining the house and disregarding the history that I feel is there. I don't know if I can say I'm relieved to no longer be living there, but more relieved in a sense that I don't feel the need to be there. Ultimately I feel that moving is a manifestation of a choice I'm ready to make: that I want to start looking forward, rather than backward, in making my decisions.

Although I hate to start off on such a negative note, I hope that it symbolizes my desire to put it in the past and move away from the pervasive negativity. Susi, Oli and Shane and the drama of the Macarthur Street house was easily the most significant experience that impacted me this year Last week the dentist told me that I’ve begun grinding my teeth in the last year to a pretty bad extent for a 28-year-old, and I think it’s only fair to blame a large chunk of that on Susi and Jess and everything that goes along with that nonsense. I’m resentful of everything that went down, the fact that I can’t live in the most beautiful house by the beach anymore, that my friends' group has awkward encounters when we’re both present, and overall for the pain and isolation I experienced. Though I take my share of responsibility, I think Susi has made it clear that she’s a bad friend and person and not somebody that would have been around in my life forever. She’s not worth the frustrated tears that I still want to shed, and Oli has proven himself time after time a complete coward for putting up with her shit. Shane isn’t even worth a mention, but there’s a reason for a single guy in his late thirties living in a share house and it’s not just his anger issues. So yeah, I’m still angry and resentful and sad. And I hope that it’s just another drop in the bucket of things in life that aren’t fair next year so that I can move forward. Onward and upward (to a place that Kleine Susi can’t reach).

This past year I competed in the Miss America Competition and won 2nd runner up. My two weeks spent at Miss America changed my life and taught me things about myself I didn’t know. I grew more as a person in those two weeks than I did over three years in college. I am incredibly grateful to have had the experience to represent NJ at Miss A. I was surrounded by 50 incredible women who truly inspired me to never settle but be thankful for what I have. My time there made me realize so much about myself. I became empowered in the fullest sense of the word. There is nothing more empowering than self confidence. I was worried it would have had a reversed effect but instead of seeing 50 incredible women and negatively comparing, I chose to embrace the fact that I was at Miss America because I was one of those women. I learned about true, genuine kindness and what it means to be the person I would look up to. I learned the value of life experiences, I learned how to deal with pressures I’ve never felt. I learned to really think big and for that I am incredibly grateful and totally inspired.

I finally picked up a job as a consultant. After I was laid off in mid 2015, I set up a DBA - paid for a license, opened a business bank account, ordered business cards, and set up the info that I was available on linkedin - and did a fair bit of low key local networking. There was NOTHING going on in 2015. The next year, I had some interviews and a nibble or two, but - nothing. Since late March 2017, though, I've been working two days a week at (former employer). Whew - two days a week and I'm wiped out. How did I do this four days a week for so long? (note - ten hour days, with a two hour commute). The money is better than I would have asked for, and very welcome, as we are helping one daughter with graduate school expenses (living expenses and travel only, not tuition) and supporting the youngest at home, and so far I've bought two cars (used) in the past 12 months, and we are going to Hawaii at the end of October for two weeks. So I'm - overall - grateful, but tired. A little worried that we are over our head with expenses - but so far things look okay and we are on track to sell the house and move next year as planned, if all goes well. We are getting the house cleaned and cleared, though slowly....I have hopes for the future. Without this job, we'd be further behind, and far more strapped for current expenses, and we couldn't be as much help for our daughter, who is doing amazingly well midway through her program, and she may soon be starting her own business with outside financing....wow. So - two fledglings out of the nest, and only one chick still here...progress.

A significant experience that has happened in my life in the past year, is the death of my beloved father. While he had Parkinson's disease for 16 years, and his decline was very difficult to watch, I am deeply mourning him. I was so close to him, and while he hadn't been "original Daddy" in a long time physically, he was still there mentally to impart his wisdom. He died 4 days after my daughter's bat mitzvah, and while could physically be there since he was bedridden in another city, he was able to give us a present of not dying right before the bat mitzvah, which was what we thought would happen the Monday before when he was moved to the last stage of hospice. Dad made a recovery and lived 9 days after being put in the last stage of hospice (normally 1-3 days). Nothing went wrong with the bat mitzvah it was perfect and I feel like his energy help it be perfect. Nothing went wrong. Nothing!!! With the bat mitzvah, I am relieved it is over, and proud of how well it turned out. Our daughter worked hard and did an excellent job. I have mixed feelings about his passing. Part of me is relieved that he is no longer suffering, but the other part of me just misses him. He wasn't fully living with advanced Parkinsons, and it went on for so long. We lived with years of what are we going to do if dad dies while we are on vacation or during another time that would have been challenging? He told us in the autobiography he dictated to my sister and me, that he felt his life happened in the order it was suppose to and he felt like something was looking out for him. I hope that continues wherever he is. In the mean time, 5778 I hope to be a year of completing mourning and coming to peace with his passing.

The Australian government announced new visa laws which impacted on my ability to find a new job and therefore to stay in the country. At first I was stoic, perhaps partly because I found out while on holiday in the USA and therefore it felt quite far off. But over the last few months it has affected me deeply, making me feel confused, resentful and frustrated. The result of my fruitless attempts to find work is that I had to bite the bullet and decide to return to the UK.

It's so funny how you can go from feeling so high to so low so fast. I didn't get hired back at my job. That was probably the best and worst summer of my life. I am in therapy because of it. I never thought I would need that. I feel really ashamed of myself. This is not the person I like to think of myself to be. I always strive to be the best. Now, I am not, and I don't know how to deal with it. I feel so sad. Not like a constant feeling, but I am not that same happy person I used to be. It makes me feel sad everyday and it consumes all of my thoughts.

A significant experience that happened is the election of Donald Trump as President of the USA. How bizarre & terribly scary to me. He runs his mouth off and is mean and hateful. I feel like our country is a joke to the world and bigots, racist, etc feel they have the right to act out their hate. As awful as this is, I have to wonder if this will push us (USA) to growth of being better people, despite him.

I completed my conversion to Judaism! After nearly a year and a half of study and preparation, I went before a (very friendly!) beit din to proclaim my commitment to my new faith, and then I immersed in the mikveh (ritual bath) to make it official. My parents and three dear friends were present as witnesses, along with my beloved rabbis.

On July 2 / 8 Tammuz, I married the love of my life. It's hard to express how this affected me, even several months later. My half-joking answer to the persistent query, "How's married life?" is "getting a joint bank account and not having to plan a wedding." But when I truly think back to that day, and the days preceding and following, I am so grateful for and inspired by the love and support felt from everyone in the room, in person and in spirit. So much travel, time, resources, energy - all in the name of our love. When I read this note again, God willing, the thank-you notes will be sent, the videos and photographs watched and shared, and our relationship will be as dynamic and strong as ever.

My mind goes straight to Trump. This country was rocked this year, by a wave of hate and ego and selfishness and pure stupidity and I feel ashamed to be a part of this country in this moment. I was rocked, too, by my own ignorance at how bigoted and violent this country is. The election of Trump and subsequent disasters (threats to healthcare, Muslim travel bans, deportations, Charlotesville, all the hurricanes, etc etc) have made me feel afraid and also incredibly privileged that I actually have little to be afraid of. I feel angry and I feel powerless.

I finished my post-graduate studies, and finished being the treasurer of my martial arts club. I am relieved about both of them, as they did require a lot of time and effort. I am more satisfied about my work on my studies, while grateful about the treasury work being handed on as I will no-longer be the only one who knows how to operate the club treasury role.

I went to Desert Trip, 3 days of concerts, in Indio, CA. I had tremendous trouble walking because my hamstrings had collapsed 6 months earlier, but I pushed thru because...the concerts! I had thought I'd be back to normal by the time the concert came around, but no such luck. I took a chance. My legs were in excruciating pain, I had to keep walking or stop and sit down for 10 minutes...but there was no place to sit walking in from the shuttles. So I just kept walking. I lost Kim once when she stopped to look at something, but we eventually reconnected - by chance - on the same bus back to the hotel. I'm glad I went, despite the difficulties. It was a fabulous trip!

My divorce. I never thought I'd end up divorced and it was an experience that although I knew it needed to happen, it was still very hard to deal with. But not in the ways I would have expected. I don't miss my ex, but I very much miss having a life partner. The experience also forced me to confront my faith in a way that I had not previously had to do. I had to reconcile how God would allow something that he loves and respects (marriage) come to an end. What did I do wrong? Was I disappointing God? Could I have done more? So many questions. But when I realized that I couldn't truly be my completely authentic self or fulfill whatever I feel to be my God-given purpose with that person as my partner, I felt the release and I was able to start my healing process.

Starting over. New country, city, job, friends... it was an emotional rollercoaster, but I have grown so much, and I still learning a lot about myself and life. I'm trying to do my best and be my best no matter the situation.

I don't feel like there has been a significant "event" in the past year, because it was all just a haze after leaving Yuya, but maybe there are two landmarks: 1. I have moved house from the supported accommodation in Akabane to Ekoda in Nov 2016. 2. After spending a summer (2017) in and out Greenpark, Yuya finally decided that "he doesn't need me" and decided to kick me out. He used his parents / his father for bullying me, and to kick me out till end of September. His mother helped me packing, otherwise I would not have been able to do it, but it is all now in boxes and stored in a friend's house. It was good to go though and touch my things that I have not seen in about 5 years... Overall, my experience of this year has been that of misery. When I moved here, there was renovations next door and noisy every day and I had to take Yuan for naps outside. I still have not recovered mentally from that time! I was overexhausted. Then it was cold and I was fighting to have gas heating installed and then I lost the internet because I have not been paying it. And problems with COOP - in November I had a cold before the move, and I haven't paid on time and they sent debt collectors to me. Then again in July, and they were bullying me, and I lost the ability to use this service. This was super stressful. So the problems with finances. Debts. Inability to get though the month. Always borrowing and paying back. Electricity switched off. Gas switched off... it has been so stressful. So I am guessing overwork with childcare, lack of sleep, has had me stretched to thin. And the financial problems have overwhelmed me. So overall I can say that this year has been my experience of significant ANXIETY...

O parto do Pedro. Foi maravilhoso, fico muito grata a Deus por ter me proporcionado essa experiência tão maravilhosa, tão intensa e tão inspiradora. Me sinto mais forte e abençoada.

I went away for a week of solitude to write. It was wonderful. I am grateful for the opportunity. However, it was extremely difficult to re-enter society.

I graduated in May, spent 3 months doing nothing, moved, found a job I liked and hated in August - a call center for a local-ish credit card, put in my 2 weeks, and started working with CHILDREN full time by October 31. I started in the 2 year old classroom, then it split and I went with the younger ones to 2A, started to see Preschool in the afternoons, and now I'm in Pre-k with a bit of each day in preschool. I really enjoy seeing the kids learn and grow and experience the world, but I've spent the last couple of days (Oct 2 - 4) feeling like I was in the wrong place and that it was time to move again and become more than I am now. That feeling is still lingering, but so is self doubt and the negative talk. Hoping this weekend will open my eyes and I'll move forward more confidently.

In the past year, politics has gone stark-raving mad. This is bad enough, but what it's done to my friends! Some of them are simply too sensitive to deal with this. This is not a criticism - many are dealing with health issues. This is so stressful for them. I am angry in more of a second-hand way. Other than being disappointed at the developments in general, I'm not directly affected (yet). I have so much going on in my life (mainly work) that I don't have time to dwell. But my friends' anguish comes through loud and clear. It's a helpless feeling. I don't know what to do, other than support them however I can.

This past year I signed up for and trained for my first marathon. I think I've learned so much about myself physically, mentally and emotionally. I'm extremely grateful for this experience and my body's capabilities of being able to run longer and harder distances. The "big day" is this weekend so I don't know what it'll feel like but through marathon training I've learned to focus not just on the runs but also on the recovery. It's important to listen to your body for the good and the bad. I think i'm hyper-tuned into what I'm feeling, which ultimately is a good thing.

I recently graduated from college with an Associate Degree. I didn't think that I would ever go back to school but I'm very happy I did. Although my degree wasn't necessarily in the field I plan to go into, I'm not worried about going back now for something I'm more passionate about. I'm happy it's over with but excited that the classes I will be taking will be more exciting and satisfying.

After the election, my house was in turmoil. My husband and I voted for different people and that became very personal. We have a child that identifies LGBTQ and Mr. Trump and his campaign left our child feeling vulnerable. When their dad voted the way he did, our child took it very personally, that they did not have their dad's love and support. Things continued deteriorating over the next month or so until just before Christmas. I told my husband that I had been thinking about asking for a divorce but was playing to wait until after Christmas. It wasn't like, "so honey, what do you think? " But in the middle of an argument. The tension had been very high. And just when we reached that breaking point, I said that I did not want to get divorced, at least not now. It was something we didn't have to rush into, we could always make the decision to do it, but I really didn't want to do it, maybe not ever. Then I had to open myself up to forgiveness. It had started to become a habit to feel bitterly about something he had said or done, and when those thoughts came up, I would stop and say no, I forgive you. I am not going to dwell on that. It was strangely freeing.

My Great Grandpa turned 95 which makes me feel really grateful and happy. Also my Grandpa took my family and I on a trip to Italy which was an amazing experience, which i am grateful for.

I recently got my PhD, which was something that last year, I said I wasn't sure I could actually finish. I am of course very grateful, to both myself for not giving up and my family and friends for believing in me. I am also relieved. It is a huge weight off my shoulders, although I still have to worry about finding a job. I also think this experience has made me a stronger person. I know what I am capable of if I put my mind to it, and I have a better tolerance for difficult times. As my one friend likes to put it, to get your PhD, you need "to go to Hell and back." I think that's a fairly accurate description of this past year.

Don't sweat the small stuff has been a way of life for me. I thought I was immune to being bothered by everyday -trivial problems. This year a trip to Hawaii pushed every boundary I had. It helped me see that looking for the small joys in the midst of problems gets you through. My 15 year old daughter and i decided to share a suitcase on our spring break trip to Hawaii. We crammed everything into the one suitcase and each just had a small carry on. We were running late and in a last second trip to check for tickets I failed to put the suitcase in the car. We got to the airport only to find we had no luggage...that meant no cute new swimwear, sun screen, snorkel equipment. The 8 hour plane ride to Hawaii being berated by my daughter was less than enjoyable. But hey no bid deal we can handle it. We met my sister in Hawaii and drove to our first escape, a walk to the volcano at night. We got there 10 minutes after they closed. Still, no big deal. The next day we had to run to town and get clothes and snorkel gear, while in the store someone hit our parked rental car. Four hours later we were still looking for a beach. No luck, the wind had picked up and so we drove to the other side of the island to our condo. The next day was perfect weather- we went to the white sand beach and played in the water and had a wonderful time (my daughter and sister did get caught in a rip tide and had to get help from the lifeguard even though I had warned them several times and explained how to get out.) about lunch time I realized my wallet was no where to be found, DAMN. It's ok I said don't sweat it. by now I was starting to wonder if I had pissed of Pele-god of the island - and wondered how to escape her wrath. When we got back to the condo the water pipes had broke next door so there was no water (just grateful we weren't flooded). The next day both my daughter and sister came down with a terrible cold and so we decided to drive to the Hilo side and see a bird refuge....we got there 15 mins after the last tour left. The entire day was spent in the car listening to the same 3 songs (chosen by my daughter) over and over and over. With only one day left I was determined to snorkel at my favorite spot, Captain Cooks, we decided to hike in - it is a vertical 3 mile hike- my daughter did not wear good shoes- like I told her to and got blisters, so I gave her mine. I got blisters. My sister, said, I have been having breathing problems so watch out for me down there- sent me in to a bit of a panic. I was so excited to spend the day there that everything else left my mind once I hit the water. After 15 minutes in my happiest place on earth, I look up and both my daughter and sister are sitting on a rock looking miserable. Needless to say I got out, cried to myself a bit and we hiked the 3 mile vertical trail back to the car. I felt defeated. When I got home and thought about the trip I was grateful that I had held it together and even enjoyed a sunset, pretty flowers, good food and 15 minutes in a beautiful place. I am going to have to make peace with Pele before I return, but I am grateful for her lessons in patience and small stuff.

The experiences that seem significant to me have a tendency to deal with loss. A little over a year ago, my mother-in-law died. Since I lost my own mother at the age of three, I have looked to other women to fill this void. Betty-Jo has been one of these mothers. However, I think the most "significant" experience may be when my daughter-in-law divorced my son. He did not want the divorce, but there really was no fixing the marriage. I felt like my family had been ripped away from me and that I would die from the grief her actions triggered. In one way, I was glad she was out of his life. However, their 3 year old daughter is now in the middle of the polarization and hurt that's been created. I resent the ex for how selfish she is and how she has taken so much from my son. Yet I am inspired at how my son is handling the divorce in a mature manner. This is an ongoing lesson that I never wanted to learn. It will be interesting how I interpret my "final grade".

All of a sudden, Canada became home. I've lived here for over 6 years and at some point in the past year, it became home for me. Something clicked with the new friends I've met...they crossed from acquaintances to true friends. If I were ever to leave, I now consider it to be a home I would miss. I'm thankful.

I finally started therapy. She has been a God send to me. I have so much to work on. I have so much to learn. I am still learning to live with the grief of my sons death by suicide due to depression the fall of 2015 and the fall out from that. So I am thankful for therapy and have hope to live with joy.

I biked and hiked the length of New Zealand with an ex. It was tough - I'm a terrible travel partner, and actually much prefer to travel alone. The problem is, I never do. I rely on other's people's initiative in order for me to go on a trip. I am grateful to the ex-girlfriend who took the initiative to make the trip happen and invite me along on it. I'm resentful at myself for ruining substantial parts of it for both of us with my terrible travel-partnerness, and I'm relieved that we will quite likely end up only remembering the best parts.

Beginning in late February, the wind began to blow and went on blowing through March, April and May. It became significant as we prayed about what it meant and we felt it was a metaphor for change. The winds of change. During those months we made some radical choices and decisions that will put us on a different track in the coming year and beyond. I am grateful that we are being led by the Spirit, and while that is often not precise or quick, it nevertheless feels right.

The marriage has ended -- was truly done years ago but now we are in the process of making it legal. I have (and still am) learning so much about me and who my true friends and family are. The winter played out with my siblings both treating me with contempt so I really am on my own. But I am sooooo tried of being Sad or having people say that to me. I want to live well and am working to take that into my hands as my highest priority.

I nearly died from sepsis after a diverticulitis flare-up. It made me angry at the fragility of the human body, and also made my ambitions to accomplish my professional goals sharper. Rather than give me some transcendent perspective, it anchored me forcefully in the here and now. I want to work harder, make myself better, and push on my limits more in every way.

I had Kieran just over 6 months ago. I've had a lot of feelings over it: awe, anxiety, resentment, anger, love and tons more. It has been a huge change and adjustment. I'm trying to figure out how to be a teacher, wife, mom, friend, and myself all at once. It's amazing that I can love something so much but still want to go back to the way things were.

This past year has marked the end of my hopes to have a child. Turning 44 was a real milestone for me, and the year has been one of heavy grief. It has taken all of my energy to survive this experience - and hasn't left much space for anything else in my life. Sometimes grief feels like too heavy a burden to bear, and sometimes it feels like a gift of insight, wisdom and strength.

The most significant event of the last year was certainly the birth of my son. It has changed my life in the obvious ways but also the experience of birth itself has changed my life. My marriage is profoundly impacted by the experience of birthing a child because my birth was very much a combining of both my husband and my own strengths. Having him there, cheering me on even at the most most difficult moments has given me such a sense of security in my marriage, for both his willingness to dig in when things are scary and his calm demeanor. That experience is part of why I am so comfortable following him to another country to live with our infant, despite not knowing anyone, the culture, the language - having him is enough to start with. Together we can build the rest of a life.

This year, I obtained enough stability to set goals I was unable to set previously, and to strive for things that will help me improve my life circumstances/income/life balance. I am grateful that my dedication to my job for the past 3 years has put me in a position where I can perhaps move on to a different role elsewhere doing work that better serves my needs and is less emotionally draining (no longer working in a crisis center). I am relieved that I am less worried about daily survival and more focused on improving and expanding my stability. I am resentful that it has taken this long to obtain stability and start to have a glimmer of hope for improvement. However, I am also inspired by my own commitment to hard work, and professional contact building that may help me finally make a big transition.

It was October 4, on this very day all I believed had been confirmed. I'm just scared now, for him, for what will happen from now on. I wish I could do something, but I realize we each have our own battles we needed to fight by ourselves. I just want him to know I am always here, no matter what. My love is unconditional. I just feel emotionally tired, like all my tears for this month have been shed.

Jamie moving to Berlin. I am very sad. It makes me realize on a very deep level how Maisie must have felt when Pete moved to the US. I with she was still alive so I could apologize.

Moving out has been a great experience. While bf and I don't have everything down pat, it's liberating to be in charge of my own space, not limited to a bedroom and be able to break out of my stressful cooking mindset.

Okay, I'm going to step outside the parameters and talk about something that happened just over a year ago. I got divorced after 30 years of marriage fourteen months ago. At first I was crushed, overwhelmed, scared, everything. It consumed my whole being. 30 years! My whole adult life was spent with this one person. I didn't know how to be myself. But now, 14 months later, I'm relieved. So completely relieved that the stress and anxiety around my marriage is done. Only I control my life, and my money now. So now I go forward, alone but surrounded by my adult kids, my brothers, sisters, and friends. I invent myself again; happier, more self assured than I really feel right now (but I'm getting there), and more at peace.

I got my dog Sky. I had no idea the love I could have for an animal. It's such an incredible bond. She tested me and my ego a lot in the beginning but I was patient while frustrated and it is paying off. She makes the house a home. She's the sweetest little being and its nice to have something to love so purely.

My uncle - my dad's brother - died this past summer. Wasn't a surprise but still hit me hard. It felt a lot like a "dress rehearsal" for when my dad dies. My wife had a jarring but valid concern after my uncle had been buried - that since my dad and uncle were very close and did a lot together socially and in the community that my dad's death might not be that far off. It's not a paralyzing fear but I still realize it'll hit me hard when it happens (same goes for when my mom dies too). I compared the experience with my uncle's death to how the NFL conference championship games are often a dress rehearsal for the TV network covering the next Super Bowl.

Babies. My husband and I began trying to have a baby in May. We've been through 5 cycles of not getting pregnant. We went to a fertility clinic in July and tests revealed that I have low AMH and my husband has low sperm morphology (google it). From what I understand, our chances of getting pregnant naturally are not great. And we most likely will not be able to afford IVF. We need to make another appointment with the clinic. We're definitely still trying. But also getting excited (at least I am) about foster to adopt. Overall, I'm sad about the prospect of never having a biological child. Meanwhile, one of my close friends is pregnant and due in October. I am a little jealous of how easily this friend got pregnant, but each person's life plays out differently. This is my life. In happier news, my brother and sister-in-law are fostering a baby. This baby has shown me how wonderful a non-biological baby can be. I feel hopeful that he will become a permanent part of our family in the next year or so. I also had surgery in February - a Nissen Fundoplication with hiatal hernia repair for my acid reflux. For the first time in my adult life, I'm off medication and acid reflux FREE!!!!!!!! I am so relieve, happy, and in awe. My husband and I got a cat last October. He is the highlight of our home - loved and adored like every pet should be. He fills me with happiness. Also, another close friend is getting married on Sunday. I don't really feel anything about that (other than happy for she and her soon-to-be husband). Lastly, Hurricane Harvey devastated the city of Houston with flooding in August. I wasn't personally impacted, but my aunt's home flooded and was totaled and the community as a whole is forever changed. It was and is heartbreaking. And the Cubs won the World Series (a HUGE deal to my husband). I know I was supposed to describe A significant experience, but it's been an eventful year.

Got my pugs!!!! They have changed my entire world! I love them to pieces and they are such a responsibility but it's worth it more and more each day that I get to spend with them. They've made our little family that much better.

I travelled the world with 75 other people. I love a lot of them dearly. I learned a lot. It propelled me along a path that I would have taken a lot longer to walk by myself. It was unforgettable. And it resulted in some extraordinary things. But it was not life-changing. Not in the way that other people expect it to have been. I am grateful for the life I have. It does not need to change. It's fine as-is.

Steven proposed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's pretty darn significant! Last year, I wrote that I met him and that everything would change. And it has. For one thing, on a superficial level; I'm like a 20 year old, showing off my ring, distracted all the time planning a wedding, looking for wedding dress, engaging my girlfriends in the planning of a lovely conventional wedding. Steven and I both want a do-over from our hippy weddings. Deeper, though, is the challenge to every independent fiber of my being that came from a deep wounding that I am essentially alone. Out of the blue, he says things like, "you are not alone." Steven constantly tells me he's never known anything like what we have. And how beautiful I am. It's healing to be together, to be fully seen and loved. We both value our maturity and skills. We are willing to tell each other what's true and stay current on the irritants so we can reboot every day. It allows the trust to grow and fosters deepening of connection. I have had very fearful days when I worry that I will not have enough personal space or freedom or concerns for what will happen to our health as we enter marriage as elders. But we talk, and I move through each fear with companionship - not by myself anymore. WOW! To find love EVER is one of the greatest gifts of life . But to find the best love we've ever known in our 60's verges on a miracle. I'm happier than I've ever been. And so is he.

There are so many experiences that happened this year I don't know where to begin. I got married, donated bone marrow to my dad, got pregnant, had a miscarriage, bought a house, watched my father die, and got pregnant again. It has all affected me, but I think that I have spent most of the last year overwhelmed and numb to it all. There was too much that happened in that 5 month period from October to February. Maybe the most significant was donating bone marrow. I flew home to Wisconsin one week after getting married and was there for a little over three weeks. It was a strange period in my life when I look back at it. My Dad was in the hospital. I spent my days sitting with him and my Mom, talking and hearing stories about their lives that they never shared before. At night I would bring my mom to my sister's house and then go back to the hospital and watch sports with my Dad. We watched the Cubs win the world series. We talked. I was trying to process my new status as a married woman, while also coping with the possibility of my Dad dying. Then the donation day came and it sapped away all my energy on top of the emotional roller coaster I was on. A few days after I flew back home Donald Drumpf won the election and it was just too much on top of everything else that I had been dealing with. I didn't have the energy to cope and I went into a deep depression for weeks. I couldn't even talk to my family or friends. I still haven't fully processed everything that I went through last fall, but I know that it had a big impact on me. I am so grateful for those weeks I got to spend with my parents. Even if it was in the hospital and pretty awful. We had some very frank and open discussions about life and what they wanted after death. I am grateful for the opportunity to help my Dad out in that way. Even now I feel like giving bone marrow wasn't enough, and I have to fight the guilt because I know that in the end it really wasn't enough to keep him alive. But at least I was able to do something. It isn't how I would have ideally liked to have spent the first month of my marriage, but I think it tested us in a way that has strengthen our relationship. We got married and immediately the world fell apart, but it has only brought us closer together.

Splitting up w Don. Trusting my intuition even when it was incredibly uncomfortable. Trusting what I cannot see. Surviving this old narcissistic wound that I have ignored for so long. Healing the trauma

Election of Donald Trump: I am frightened, energized, and motivated to connect with others and create a sense of community. Also very curious to see how things unfold.

Finally able to start rebuilding my body. Joined the Queer Gym and got committed to that. Hiking to Havasupai Falls - 45 miles in 42 hours. Such a beautiful place! I am so grateful for my body and it's ability to rebuild in this world energy.

I moved back to the capital city, which is a big move from the town I was living at. It has been pretty recent. I moved in with my partner, so it has been exciting and full of new learnings. I feel very grateful, comfortable, free at the same time, and really exctited about what this stage might bring for my personal growth as well as our relationship.

I bought a house this year. I am grateful for the opportunity and proud of my successes. I am also extremely stressed because there's so much work to do in the house to make it mine and I haven't even unpacked even though it's nearly been 6 months.

I retired in January upon moving to Fayetteville. I feel very grateful, relieved and inspired. I feel free of the ego associated with my career, no longer needing to prove myself. I now feel that I have time and can set priorities and personal goals. My focal areas are art, music, spirituality and family.

I had the great fortune to be able to go to Israel for the first time in my life. It was an amazing journey with 14 very special women who I have grown to know and love. I am grateful for the opportunity, but I am proud that I was strong enough to embark on this adventure even when the timing wasn't perfect. I couldn't really afford to, it was a long time away from my high school aged son. My marriage has fallen apart, there were so many excuses not to go. It would have been easier not to go. But I went and I loved it and I needed it to rejuvenate my soul.

Penelope Jane Heil was born on February 19, 2017! She has changed my world. I am a mom - my dream in life! She is such a blessing, but going back to work has been so hard. I constantly think that I am not good enough, as a mom, a wife, or a teacher. So becoming a working mom has been quite significant as well!

I went to Oregon to see the total solar eclipse with my children and grandchildren. It may be the only time in my life that I ever get to have this experience again. It was magical. But the life changing aspect of this trip was sleeping in a tent overnight. In my life, I have never done that and I realized how wonderful it was.

I broke my right fibula (ankle). I was no weight bearing for 2 months and 2 weeks in a boot. It threw me into a depression and a self pity party. It also made me start thinking about how to overcome these two enemies. No, I'm not grateful for missing all of summer - again - with a broken bone. But yes, I'm grateful for the attitude changes that came about. I'm relieved that I'm finally healed up. I resented missing summer, but I've put that aside. Inspired? Definitely. I've started a Bullet Journal after weeks and weeks of looking at other's journals I decided to just watch Ryder's video and do what was right for me. I've also made a plan for decluttering and organizing the den to be a calm place for me to write, journal, read and pray.

I would say the most significant experience last year was moving out of the townhouse to an apartment. That whole experience was awful in which I would not like to repeat. Yes I am Relieved that is over. Starting with getting the house ready for closing, which almost didnt happen. To moving my stuff from a bigger sq footage to a smaller one. I have too much stuff and I dont like to throw things away because I have to make decisions to do that. Paper is my biggest problem. Also I tried to do just about everything myself which was stupid. At first I had regrets of moving into an apartment. I haven't lived in one for sometime. I felt I was going backwards in my life. I thought I should be owning something given my age of 65. But the longer I have been in the apartment that feeling has gone away. Yes I did learn somethings about myself. Need to get more organized. Dont procrastinate. Ask people for help. They can only say no. Set goals and act on them. However, I am grateful for learning about a new area of Stl and people and making me downsize. I am happy that I moved here.

2017 - This last year I had a long extended period of doing very little. It kinda drove me crazy, but I really leaned in to appreciating it. It's currently faded as I work on Spinway and go back to productivity, but its lessons are renewed every so often when I get frustrated for being bored. I have a feeling that I'll have more practice with "nonproductive" time. It felt like FOREVER before that shifted. I'm so grateful to have moved through it for now.

My mother’s passing. I’m grieving, but differently to how it was when my father died 21 years ago. I guess cos I’m a real adult now at 45?! Just kidding, I’m still growing up. Mum's death has made me rethink my life and relationship with my children. When it’s too late, it is too late! I need to embrace my life and grab it with both hands rather than letting it be something that happens to me; I need to make it what I want it to be. I have all the power within me! ♥️

I met and fell in love with a wonderful man. I was forced to confr0nt my fears of loss and sense of vulnerability in order to let him in, to let myself love him. It has been a lot to absorb, a lot to feel, a lot to fear, and a lot to comprehend and figure out and allow myself to feel. It's been both exhausting and energizing. It fills me with tranquility at times and anxiety at times. I am amazed and tremendously grateful at our good fortune, my resilience, and his willingness to examine his life and consistently be supportive of us. I am very happy to be sharing my life with him.

Just this week, I accomplished my CC and CL awards with my Toastmaster group. It's odd that it doesn't feel more significant (emotionally) but if I look at the facts (started in 1994 with my first group and thee groups later - 23 years later) I'm finally achieving these accomplishments. It's really about breaking patterns and achieving a goal. Feeling grateful - definitely, Relieved, perhaps. Inspired - yes. To keep going and not let other things prevent me from accomplishing them.

Parker's birth! I can still recall that moment when we first heard her cry and both began crying ourselves. 9.5 months later, it's been a crazy journey and we are absolutely loving life with our sweet, little girl. She just began crawling this past weekend!

I miscarried our first attempt at starting a family at 6.5 weeks in January. It was incredibly traumatic, painful and took months to get over (although, of course, you're never truly over it). But since I'm a silver-lining type, it was definitely something that strengthened our marriage and brought us closer together. I'm now 20 weeks along with our second attempt and everything is going great, so I'm just thankful that we were able to try again successfully!

the election of donald trump and seeing the racism i grew up with in the south in the 1950’s and 1960’s spread across the country. I’m sad and horrified. I thought that by now we would all realize that if we can’t have a future of peace we will have no future.

I found out that I was pregnant, it really changed the vision for my future, mine and my boyfriends and cannot be happier at the moment. We were talking about having a baby for a year now so it was pretty much a milestone we both wanted to reach sooner or later and we are looking forward to that. It changed how I see myself, my past, my lovelife, my reationships and everything honestly... I am very grateful and I cannot wait to meet him.

I have trouble thinking of one particular experience. I think one of the largest was receiving news that a parent sent a letter to the principal about the positive impact I had on their son. Neither myself nor the principal never saw anyone do this before. It's arrogant of me, but I have it up on my wall along with other student drawings I've received. It inspires me to keep going if I ever have a bad day or if it feels like I don' t know what I'm teaching. During that same teaching gig I volenteered to be a ball jockey coach for their small season. I quickly learned on my feet the rules and expectations of my role... and got so good at it the kids did start to call me Coach. I dreamed about my uncle, sitting in the living room, hanging off every word I told him. I like to think that maybe it was him, because it was something he never did with me a lot in real life and because I have never dreamed of speaking with him again.

In March of 2017, I was diagnosed with MS. Initially I was almost on a high about it. I felt mentally strong, with a positive outlook. I think this was because I had been having symptoms for more than a year, and was happy to finally get a diagnosis. What I have learned since, is this is a complex, multi-faceted disease, that affects so many systems of my body and brain. It has been very difficult to get a handle on it, and especially, how I will cope with it. I want to be healthy again, but I am at my most unhealthy right now. I have kept my awareness about other peoples' suffering, and that has made me appreciative that I have good medical care and coverage, and my current disabilities are mild. But I'm afraid, particularly about the cognitive effects and the average reduction in life expectancy. I feel less in control, and I often don't know what to do.

Donald Trump was elected president. This has had a significant effect on my life. I have marched and written and protested. I am scared and upset by pretty much everything he has done.

The scooter accident showed me how quickly life could change. I am so very thankful that I survived! Very angry that I could not find out what happened. Last year Trump was elected --- I am angry with myself for not doing more -- I am scared by the climate that he represents

My most significant experience this past year has been swimming nearly daily in the NYC rec centers (the Chelsea rec center by my office and the St Johns rec center in BK). I hadn't regularly exercised in several years before about a year ago. I became motivated because I knew that exercise helps fertility and then I kept exercising because it's one of the most important things you can do when pregnant. I love the crush of humanity at the rec centers (in Chelsea mostly older Asian folks, at St Johns mostly older black folks). Sometimes we swim 5-6 to a lane! But it is such good exercise. And I never tire of it. My body looks beautiful and is strong and my mood is significantly improved.

My lover pelted me with his phone in a tiny renal car on Alceister Road, Standford-Upon-Avon. Awful. Bewildered, hurt, so scared I felt nauseous... I wanted to believe that it was an accident. I expected, then demanded an apology. When he refused, I picked up the hot box and threw it back at him with as much force as my trembling, PTSD self could muster. Retaliation. I broke up with him the instant I retaliated. (He must have known that I would. Heck, maybe that's why he did it.) That was April 3rd (two days after he told me he loved me for the first time). Six months have passed; I still miss him. To be suddenly hit like that reopened so many wounds and dashed my hopes about a safe relationship with a man.

I already suspect a lot of this year's answers are going to revolve around last year's election. The results of the election color everything. It's impossible to think of daily life in this country any other way anymore, other than in terms of what the election has wrought. I'm nearing the end of Doris Kearns Goodwin's book about Lincoln, and wondering if the country was any more divided leading up to the Civil War than it is today. I finished Hillary's new book recently, and I'm even more saddened that we don't have this smart, thoughtful, diplomatic, and wonky woman in charge. Overall, the only silver lining I can see about all of this is how much more engaged so many Americans are now. Of course, there's a bit of "too little too late" mixed in, since so many claimed they were "both equally bad," or figured their vote didn't count so they wouldn't bother (or they'd vote for Jill Stein), and they're now realizing that yes, every vote actually DOES matter, and there's no made-up email "scandal" in the world that could equal 45's level of bad... But I digress. I'm trying to focus on the future, making my monthly donations to Planned Parenthood and the ACLU, sending messages of thanks to my elected representatives (who, by and large, are champions for the things I believe in), staying educated rather than just listening to soundbites, and getting more involved in my community. So, though I am still devastated and scared for the country - particularly any population in it other than straight white men - I try to turn that into a fire that moves to me to act and fight back.

I was received into the Orthodox Church on Holy Saturday. It was beyond description. I am beyond grateful that I have come home.

I got engaged this part year and I would say I am incredibly grateful to have met such a special person who I am excited to spend my life with and nervous too because now the future feels very real and thats a scary thing so I am just trying to be excited every step of the way!

Moving into the back yard of Christine and Hugo's. They are kind, they know how to create community, with small daily bits of conversation and kindness. They don't dread other people. Somewhere I always want to be alone, and work or gorge myself. Here, I have to confront wanting to lock myself away and not see people. I feel I am learning to trust myself a little at a time. Can I be trusted, relied upon? Or will I choose my appetites over people? It is a question I have. I think I am learning to speak to the different parts of myself in this. I have also joined the Wellspring group, and I'm excited to see where it goes. I miss my Jewish community. I want to go home to my people for High Holidays. Rocky makes me question if my commitment to Judaism is all an act of consumption. But I don't believe that. There is more mystery than I understood. More complexity. And you can't just take the wisdom and leave the rest, that's not fair. But finding the places where my soul can rest is ongoing important work. I don't know if can rest here in this city, in this Jewish community, or not. But I can try.

Seeing the total solar eclipse in August was a wonderful experience. I've always been fascinated by celestial alignments and seeing this most dramatic of alignments made me feel awed spiritually and connected to the universe. With all the strife in the world politically and for people dealing with the fury of nature in this part of the world most recently, this brief but serene moment felt centering and it inspired me. It made me feel small in the world but that was OK. I was grateful to be able to experience it and help share the beauty of it with others.

This year I left an abusive dead-end relationship that I was stuck in, and I reconnected with the love of my life. I was scared to walk away, and I was also scared to get hurt again, but I knew I wanted to be happy and I wasn’t. I have never been more grateful in my life. My love inspires me to write again, and to live life full on with no hesitations. I am relieved that she still loved and wanted to be with me. Me and my best friend Nyia are also estranged due to her selfishness and her problems with her husband. As much as I love her the relationship became one-sided and toxic and she isn’t in a place to understand or process her fault in the situation. After what she said to me about me being a fucked up person I doubt we will ever be close again.

I let go of a friendship I was holding on to for all of the wrong reasons. I'm relieved and thankful to Chris for being by my side during the process because although it was necessary, it was also the most difficult thing I've ever done.

The most significant experience of the past year has been going to see a psychiatrist and finally readjusting my medication for anxiety/depression. Once that happened, I began to feel more like myself and felt myself begin to grow in most aspects of my life. I'm grateful I finally took the step to make that change, and even though I realize it's something I could have done years ago, I'm just glad I did it.

The devastation of the election of Donald trump.

Taking the trip to Alaska with my family. It was the first big trip we took after my mom's cancer diagnosis and healing. It was so great to be together and focus on the things which really matter.

I graduated from medical school and marched into my #1 choice of residency. This was a huge accomplishment for me, especially in the setting of always doubting my capabilities when it came to math and science. Being in residency however, has been terrifying and makes me doubt myself everyday. Do I resent it? Probably a little - I think this is what I love and want to do, but I also felt pressure to do it from a family, fiscal, ethical position.

My oldest daughter has started her senior year of high school. Over the summer she has grown so much and she is starting to step into her role as a young adult. Her self advocacy skills are skyrocketing right now, and while she has some learning challenges and is a bit behind her peers, she is making huge strides and I am so proud of her. I am seeing peeks into the woman she will become and it is both magical and awe-inspiring. I am so grateful (and relieved!) that she is taking her own steps towards independence. Her steadfast work inspires me.

This past year has been quite a blur, mostly joyous on a personal level. Raising my son is my number 1 priority above all else. But as for "significant experience" the election last November was sickening, and the outcome of white supremacy and cruelty from our federal government has been doubly so. I'm still appalled 10 months later that this happened. I'm sickened that there are people in my extended family who cheered for this outcome. It has affected my outlook and my optimism, but I haven't quite been able to muster the energy to contribute in any meaningful way. I'm simply resentful. I feel powerless.

The US election and what has come since have shattered me. The fact that Trump won an election and the horrible things that have risen to the surface of our country because of it make me ill. I have been surprised that our life has continued to go on like normal, but it's hard to feel relieved about that when I know so many others (immigrants, dreamers, transgender in the military, etc.) are living in fear.

I spent months preparing for and a month testing for my 3rd-degree black belt. Knowing this was coming inspired me all year to work on my material & to have an appreciative attitude for what I could easily take for granted--my good health in being able to do a demanding sport at age 65, my good fortune in having enough time to be able to train consistently, the privilege of having excellent teachers. I'm relieved that this is over but inspired to keep dedicating myself to my training & my dojo.

Donald Trump was elected President. So far, his presidency has not affected my life in the atrocious way that it has affected others'; however, everything he says and does is such an affront to who I am and what I want/think this country should be. I listen to the news and am continuously astonished by what he says and does. I know and worry for the day when I just shake my head and move on... it just feels like there are so many things he is attacking that I don't know where to start to help.

Well, Rob and I broke up last week. So that's pretty fucking significant. I was relieved, happy, sad, angry, bitter, depressed, hopeful. Pretty much every emotion cycled through my body in the past week. Happy because it did need to happen, and I wasn't going to end it because I wanted it so badly to work. Angry that he is so stubborn and close minded about the situation. Depressed because I remember how awesome it was when we met, and how I truly thought it was going to be forever. Pissed that I allowed someone to change how I viewed myself. Resentful that I put everything I had into a man who couldn't love me for who I am, and repeatedly told me I was ugly inside, stupid, not the girl he met, etc. Even though I accepted every aspect of his very effed up life. Inspired because now I get to enjoy life in my new state on my own. I can go hang out with friends, explore the hiking trails the way I want to. I can get back to loving myself, since he took that from me, and doing the things I enjoy the most.

My paternal grandmother passed away. It brought to the surface the great saddness in the separation to she and my father. I am grateful to this unleashing of issues, now I can acknowledge them and work to release thiem.

Living together with my boyfriend. At times it was a challenge but mostly I love it. I am grateful to have him in my life.

As wrong as this sounds, I am having a hard time thinking of a significant moment that happened this year. Maybe right now, because I'm feeling a wave of inspiration and trying to make moves to mold my life into what I want it to be.

This past year has been fairly flat. Brexit and the election of Trump created a lot of noise but overall, my life was not impacted except I got to see a number of people I know start using social media to demand others respect their opinions even as they ignored and belittled everyone who disagreed. Trolls ruled. And it sucked!

My time in the Insight BETR IOP program was pretty transformative. It seemed to help me put together all of the work I've done with Gretchen over the last ten years. I am very grateful to have been able to do it. I'm also nervous because now I have the responsibility to maintain all that I learned.

Our youngest daughter is a senior in high school. I am so very excited for her. Her senior year is going great and she is looking forward to a new chapter of life next fall. My husband and I are also looking forward to a new era and having a bit more freedom!

I finally decided to leave the most meaningful job I’ve ever had, which was tied closely to my identity. I realized I was burnt out beyond repair and in need of a life overhaul. I am still in the process of reinventing myself. I feel relieved and free and brave, and also vulnerable and scared and tired.

I have found freedom to be myself I feel happy and I am not just moving on I am moving forward

Trump was elected and I got my puppy, Hope. I am horrified, dismayed, disappointed and saddened by this election. At the same time I have seen so much community building and activism that I have renewed hope. Getting Hope has taught me how to love better, how to care for myself and the world more.

Recovered from a kidney transplant after nearly a year, I made it! I am ecstatic!

I got into the middle of a complex family dynamic (not my own) at a wedding I was in. And my role in what happened may have caused a permanent rift in one of my closest friendships. We did the initial work of mending it almost immediately, but she has gone back to having to sort through and live with her family dynamic on a daily basis, and I on the other hand kind of cleanly lifted out of it because I don't live in the same state. This geographic separation seems to have deepened our gulf even though both of us professed not to want to lose our relationship. She has stopped interacting with me on social media, even though we are still connected. I am still sorting out how this has affected me. Foremost, I feel like I acted with integrity and responded with compassion in the aftermath of our blowup--and, I think, even while it was happening. I completely accepted responsibility for my part in it and offered a real apology to the injured parties, without caveats. I am proud of that. Dealing with the long-term fallout has been a real exercise in radical acceptance for me: it's with me all the time, but I'm not struggling against the reality of the situation. I may be grieving the friendship, but not in a way that really is easily identifiable as grieving, if that makes sense. And I think the situation is pushing my personal growth in some ways. I hadn't had a confrontation like that in years. I'll be very interested to see where this whole situation is next year.

A significant experience was returning to work after having Lillie. It was an incredibly challenging experience because I was returning to something I knew so well but I was doing it as a totally different person. I still wish I would have taken the year off because it was one of the hardest experiences I have gone through. I always felt like I was failing and I just wish I had more time to really get to know my child. I also wonder if I would have done much better getting to know her? On the other end, daycare has been amazing for Lillie and it truly is her 2nd home. When I got to pick her up she is excited to see me but is happy to keep playing. I am excited that has a place that she feels so comfortable with. I just wish I had a similar place that I loved being during the work week.

Last year was a very meaningful year in many ways, although I cannot think of any really big things that happened to me personally. I was chair of the faculty committee at work. I applied for and received a leadership fellowship to move me in the direction of administrative work. I started teaching five classes per term to make extra money. It was by far the busiest year I had (although this year is proving to be even busier) but maintained an attitude of gratefulness. Grateful that I have a deep sense of purpose about the work that I do. Last year, I tried to savor life, this year I have savored my work. Now shall I talk about the devastating election and misery I felt at the election of Donald Trump...not yet.

I discovered I've got a heart condition. I collapsed whilst away and went to the Dr which resulted me being in hospital for 3 days. Initially I was scared and upset. Now I feel grateful I know what's wrong. I'm being looked after and it's given me a good opportunity to reflect where I am at and what I want to do with a clear focus that life is too short and to do the things that I want to do.

Visited Wyoming for the total solar eclipse. Seeing new parts of the country opened my mind up. The eclipse was like watching a miracle.

I lost my job that I had been at for 2.5 years. I really liked it however on the same day I was fired I got hired for two other gigs. I went thru feelings of sadness regret and irritation. But inevitably I felt it was as blessing.

I retired this year after 30 years of teaching. It was a huge decision and took many months to commit to doing it. I am grateful for all of the wonderful adults and teenagers I met and worked with over the years.

Cindy dying = Alissa Moving to Calabria = Michelle Being sick far away = Adrienne

Europe trip. Rekindled love if travel. Lucky to have seen cousins in Genoa. Got to enjoy beauty in Lake Como, culture in Prague area, family in Genoa and uniqueness in Venice.

The Trump Presidency. It has deeply shaken, saddened and pained me. It continues to pain me. It impacts me and my work every single day working with immigrant women who are afraid, anxious and feel increasingly isolated.

Against all expectations, Donald Trump was elected president. I think I'll remember that night for all of my life. It started out well enough, almost jubilant, because no one I knew could imagine anything other than a win for Clinton. I had a bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge, and was watching the returns on rabbit with friends. As the night wore one we all got quieter and quieter, the disbelief mounting as more and more states were called for him, until it there were just a few of us left watching, most of us openly weeping, myself included. I went to bed around two, before it was called. I just couldn't bear to hear it called, and I knew that there would be no way that I could sleep once that happened. Even though I knew what was coming, I still had a crazy hope that when I woke up the projections would be wrong, or that it was all a very vivid bad dream. I'm now filled with so much anger and despair all the time now. It's just under the surface, ready to come out at any moment.

My summer internship was a positive -- and even more, a valuable -- experience. I proved to myself that I was able to spend 3+ hours commuting for a job. (I don't want to do so for any more extended timeframe, but it was important that I was willing to invest that much time and inconvenience for an experience that I thought would be valuable. And it was.) The internship affected me positively overall, and even more so in retrospect. Every day was not necessarily exciting, fun, or even engaging. Some days were all of those things. Most days were at least engaging. I was able to easily deal with a modicum of monotony by knowing that the experience was helping me grow, establishing and developing personal and professional connections (mostly the latter), paying me a fair amount, and would be excellent on my résumé to help me find the right job in the future. Maybe someday I'll be my own boss, and run my own design company. I wonder how small or large it will be. I wonder how much I'll work at home. I wonder where I'll live! I'm grateful that I had the opportunity to work there. I could see myself working there again in the future. I'm relieved to be done with the long commute, and to be exploring some bigger ideas and concepts back in school. I'm reassured that this is a good professional field for me, and I'm confident that I'll continue to find success and fulfillment. It feels sort of corny to write these things, but it's just true, I guess. There's nothing wrong with having a plain old run-of-the-mill positive experience in professional growth.

I was out of work for six months before landing a job at a scrap yard. Being out of work for that long was emotionally draining and gave rise to a number of "I'm not good enough" or "what is wrong with me" thoughts. I know better about being patient and trusting the Universe to deliver me to the place where I am supposed to be, but walking the talk is always a difficult challenge. I would like not to experience the time distance between jobs as much as I did there again.

This past year I went to South Carolina to attend a school of the prophets. I am very grateful for the experience. It challenged and transformed me. I came back a new person. Before, I was confused and unsure of my calling. I came back sure of my calling.

The election of a fascist ignorant crazy president of the country. It has been completely overwhelming and traumatizing. I really don't know what will happen next. Will we be bombed by North Korea? Will he steal the next elections and become a dictator? His cronies are dismantling government agencies and funneling power and money to corporate leaders. It seems as though he'd like to roll back women's rights, people of color's rights, gay rights, Jewish rights, and trans rights. He's deporting mostly harmless undocumented people like crazy. Climate change has made natural disasters more extreme already and he has let Puerto Ricans suffer for the past week without any help at all. Last year at this time I was writing about how hopeless and terrified I felt about the state of the world. I had a sense that the worst was yet to come. And I still think that's true. But I think I have a much clearer feeling that I will not get to live a long life. That humans may not be able to survive as a species. But that we're going to bring about horrible things before then. I hate to be so negative, but given that American is becoming more fascist by the day and people are not out in the streets protesting, it's hard to expect much good to come from the next gerrymandered, fake-news intoxicated, and likely hacked election.

My Dad got diagnosed with Mantle Cell Lymphoma in April, after a dramatic spontaneous spleen rupture. The thought or prospect of potentially losing my Dad shook me to the core. It was a super tough Spring as a result. After some really fantastic medical care at Dartmouth and Dana Farber his doctors determined that he doesn't need intervention or treatment at this point, and he just goes in every four months for monitoring. That was a huge relief, and it makes me even more grateful for any time I have left with my Dad. I think the roughest part for me has been thinking about where I am in life and how I wish my life was more stable and that I had a partner and community here to lean on. I don't feel good thinking I could lose my father at this point in my life. I want to feel more stable and secure before that happens.

I was ordained as an interfaith minister. The process leading up to ordination was intense, hard, and worth it. I had to contemplate difficult questions and formulate my answers - a process that helped me to identify and articulate my deepest beliefs.

Well the election, right? It was a kick to soul for the country. It made me feel distant from America and from my family. It continues to be the worst consequences imaginable. But I do so how it has been a catalyst for action and activism and engagement. And I have tremendous gratitude to have a home with a chosen family to shelter with and rejuvenate my spirit.

I got married to my best friend in the San Juan National Forest with two of our best friends (respectively). It was a beautiful day and I felt a stronger connection than I would have expected on that day.

Being "forced" to find a new job. A little greatful to have gotten out of a bad job, but still sad and probably a little resentful that I was forced out of my home as a result. Feeling lucky to have ended up at a much better fitting position now.

I turned 60 years old. I am now officially in my last third, still feeling strong and healthy but like it's time to let a few things go, slow down a little.

Election of a terrible person as US President Blatant display of white supremacy in the Executive Branch Personal daily anxiety as a result

Dad's death was one of the most significant experiences of my life so far and certainly of the last year. I have gone through every emotion possible on this grieving journey. I was relieved after he died that he was no longer suffering. Followed by numb and disbelieving. Angry. I've been ratcheting down from crisis mode for quite some time. I'm starting to feel more like myself and more able to feel sad and in touch with my pain without being overwhelmed by it. I'm starting to feel strong because of traveling through this grief. I'm starting to appreciate - though I've been grateful all along - the strength of community that has seen me through.

Election night and the aftermath was the most significant experience of the year. Last summer, when Tyler expressed fear that Donald Trump would be president, and I told him that it could never happen. Even that morning when a student was reporting results from early states, I was fully confident that it wouldn’t happen. And the moment that I realized it could, I felt physically sick to my stomach. Like I think I dry heaved a bunch of times. It was a feeling of shock, disappoint, and fear that I have never felt before. The next morning in our mentor meeting, I saw all of the impact that the shock had on my friends and their emotional response made me realize what a significant moment it was. The affect on me personally has mostly been emotional, I guess. I certainly am giving more to charity and progressive causes, and find the work around inclusivity at school much more meaningful.

grandmothers hip replacement. heightened time with her and family, i am grateful and relieved and also poignant about the passage of time .

I got married. The wedding planning was insane and super stressful. Because the wedding was out in the middle of nowhere it ended up being so much more stressful to plan everything. Also in the middle of the process Eduardo was diagnosed with Tuberculosis, which was an additional stress during the process. I also had to be a lot more patient with him, while he was sick. The wedding was amazing, and I am so grateful for all the friends we both have and to our families. Also so grateful that I found the most amazing man in the world and the perfect person, who somehow loves me for exactly who I am.

This was a hard year. I had a big work project that was cancelled last minute. Not only I end up with nothing to do, I didn't earn enough money. it moved me. I needed to refocus and move forward. I am getting out of it. now, slowly. It was so challenging, it still is. But I learned that I cannot count on projects until I have signed a paper. I need to expect more from me, and less from others.

My mother is coming off a medication and it is altering her mindset. It's very difficult to be a caretaker. I'm one level I'm grateful for the opportunity to be of service and on the outer level it is completely new unchartered territory for which I am scared fearful and feeling inept.

This past year, my mother was diagnosed with a brain tumor. This diagnosis flipped me upside down-I think of my parents as immune to these struggles-no cancer, no injury, no major harm. I was terrified. It awoke an awareness in me that I could lose them and then the fear of what that loss would mean, how it would impact my life and my future, how it would crush my children the void that their tremendous loss would create. I am grateful for their love, their kindness and their patience. I am thankful that we are together to celebrate thanksgiving again this year, and most importantly, I regret that it took such a terrible illness to remind me of their importance in my life

Just one? This year was a big year for me professionally and personally. I changed jobs, traveled for a month around the world, and celebrated my 2-year anniversary with my partner. The most significant of all, though, has been traveling back in time through therapy and doing some hard emotional work around my teenage years. We carry our hurts deep in our psyche and, regardless of whether we've transformed ourselves outwardly, are still moving through the world with that imprint. In unearthing repressed emotions and letting them take shape until they move through me, I'm learning to see emotions not as bad or good, natural disasters that I cannot control. They can be powerful signals that can help me see myself and the environment I'm in more fully. My story today does not have to be frozen by my past, and for that, I am so grateful.

Married to my live Michal. My.most difficult yet fulfilling relationship ever.

A significant experience in the past year has been my transfer from a private institution of higher education to the public basic education system. I deeply regret having chosen the public basic education system over a well-known Roman Catholic university's senior high school on the basis of higher salary offer and the chance to return to my home city to be with my widowed mother. While my wounds over having been illegally dismissed have not yet healed, here I am having to face a very inefficient bureaucratic monolith muddled by mediocrity and often administered by unqualified and incompetent people. I have ostensibly lost weight [comments from my former colleagues about it are commonplace] despite the fact that I am eating better at home. I am seriously considering resigning from this current employment as soon as any offer comes along.

Getting over my back injury. I hit the 12 month mark since my surgery in July last year and was successfully able to get through a 12 hour military boot camp. I'm grateful I was able to get back up on my feet and look forward to the next milestone I can hit

I got divorced and moved back to my hometown. It was such a huge relief after years of pain.

My mother in law broke her ankle and that family closed ranks. It has shaken the very foundation of my marriage and has left me feeling shut out of that part of my husband's life, feeling like a mistress to the "first family", and resentful.

The last election made me see how conditional friendships are. Well, maybe those people really weren't friends. I saw how I was really nothing more than an audience member or part of their ideological echo chamber. I'm sad about it. I wish I hadn't invested energy or emotion in the people who left.

My wife returned after a three month stay in Japan. She had gone there to live in a low stress environment and recover from her depression and anxiety about the future. I really wasn't sure that she would return, but overall I'm glad she did. She brought with her a lot of wild ideas about needing to prepare for a global financial meltdown and a major earthquake which would turn the world into something like the Zombie apocalypse. These predictions came from "reliable" sources, so she said. Practically, my life became a lot easier, not having to deal with cooking, cleaning, shopping, etc. But my financial situation didn't improve much till very recently and her depression and anxiety returned. Our relationship has not grown more intimate, but has actually shrunken to a few daily and weekend encounters. I do not feel fully forgiven for past transgressions.

My son was born. I entered the pregnancy convinced I would opt for a planned c-section after two difficult births with my daughters. In the third trimester, around 30 weeks, a switch was flipped and I all of a sudden felt very empowered to try a vaginal birth. An induction at 38 weeks seemed like the writing was on the wall for a c-section, and my name was on the OR board for the day. At 10.00pm, after the induction starting at 8am, my body decided it was ready to push and I had the most fantastic and wonderful vaginal birth. I’m so grateful and inspired that I thought of even having another... but I don’t think we’re that crazy.

A significant experience that happened this past year was a promotion from an assistant to a coordinator in my job. I am grateful, but still a little stressed. It affected me in the sense that it has pushed me to think more and more about what I want from my career and my personal life. It challenges me everyday to work on my ultimate mission - to help to create a world of sustainability, health, happiness, and kindness for my friends and family. I feel lucky, appreciative and appreciated, honored, and grateful.

I found out I had cancer! It obviously affected in many different ways. Fortunately, it was found early and was very treatable. I was very grateful and inspired by the love, affection, and all support I received from family and friends.

On April 14 of this year, I learned that I passed the bar exam. Five days later, my husband asked for a divorce. At the time, I referred to this tumultuous month of my life (also my birthday month) as "Charles Dickens Themed" -- the best of times, the worst of times. I had worked so hard to pass that test. He was often gone while I studied, but I just assumed he was giving me space to work. I found out after I'd gotten my scores back that he was really just avoiding me. That hurt. It took me a month to move out of our home. I didn't yet have a job. (I still don't.) I felt scared and vulnerable and rejected. Leaving our marriage and our marital home without the security of employment and a paycheck felt like the scariest thing imaginable. Fortunately, I have dear friends who took me in and made me feel at home. It has been five months since I moved out (to the day, as I write this). I am grateful to my friends for their loving-kindness and for opening their home to me. I also, however, surprisingly relieved. I am decidedly less lonely living with my friends than I was in my marriage. I feel that perhaps my body and/or my subconscious knew that my husband no longer loved me, but I had not allowed my head or my heart to acknowledge that reality. I ached for love in my marriage, for attention, for his time. Despite the fact that I am now single, and thus still don't have that kind of time or attention, I am happier than I have been in ages. Being with the wrong person is so much lonelier than being alone. Glennon Doyle wrote that "every eviction is an opportunity." She is correct. I was evicted from my marriage, but I have found many so opportunities to be joyful on my own.

I have learned to set boundaries in my relationships - in my work relationships, siblings and family, with my partner, with my friends, and most importantly with my self. Also, I have come to the realization that I am motivated to find someone to share my life with. I feel relieved, resolute, and at peace.

This past summer, I traveled Europe with one of my best friends. It was amazing to see all of these places that I never thought I would be able to experience. However, I was oddly disappointed. I thought that I would return feeling dissatisfied with my life here. I thought that life in another country would somehow be better. I've come to learn that life in most places isn't much different. For a while I thought I wanted to teach abroad, but I now realize how important my work would be to children in the United States. Overall, I am grateful for the experience Adam and I shared together. And I'm glad our trip shifted my perspective in a way that I wasn't expecting.

Son Zachariah was confirmed healed of Crohn's disease on Tue, September 26. We were informed by his wife, Stephanie, while we were driving from Spokane airport to Omak, WA. Larry said "turn around!", so I turned around, and there along the side of the road was a chapel. We went inside and got on our knees, wept and thanked God for His grace and mercy on our son and family. He is a God of miracles!

I voluntarily resigned from a very stressful job, in a very racist environment without another lined up, with absolutely no regrets; bold but best decision for me. I was inspired to know that I'm an adult, making difficult decisions, but for the first time in a long time, putting myself first. The peace inside: amazing

Got married! The ceremony was lovely but it was not as significant as the strength of our growing intimacy. Choosing to get married and adjusting to life together is so much more significant. I know him so much better now than last year, and feel so transparent with him. It feels natural and obvious to be together, and we don't act much differently than we did before. I do like having the traditional relationship title that is given the respect elsewhere that is equivalent to our private dynamic. I like that I have a partner for financial decisions, house stuff & health stuff. I like having a ring and other symbols. In the present I feel at peace.

I found out that my older brother was a monster. He raped my niece from the time she was 8 until 14. I am honestly still devastated. I'm still trying to navigate it all. I'm resentful of my mother that raised a psychopath and that still has her head in the clouds.

Probably the most significant experience for me was the 2016 election where Donald Trump was voted president. It made me so very aware of values and how they can hurt or help people. I am striving so hard to balance energy and compassion, to not hate everyone who didn't vote or who voted for Donald Trump. I am trying to be engaged without going insane, and to do what is necessary without endangering my family. I am trying every day to be more aware of the paths that other people are walking in every direction.

I made three quilts this year...one for Evan, Joce and now Jack’s. They have all come out well but it is Jack’s I am most proud of because it is the first one made all on my own without a class...although, Kirk was a godsend helping me figure out the size of squares I needed to cut from fat quarters. Quilting is not easy for me...the math and the technical challenges are often exhausting but the precision and my increasing skill makes me peaceful. I haven’t felt like this since my calligraphy practice days filling pages of graph paper with italic script. I am proud of my work. I am grateful to the patient teachers at the quiltshop. I am sensing an increase in my self confidence as I move from rank beginner to a consciously competent quilter. This is something I have wanted to be able to do for almost 40 years. Now that I am retired, my time can be spent on learning and perfecting this skill.

This year I took a much larger role in supporting my family, especially my younger siblings. At times it was very difficult, scary, and painful. Other times it was annoying, and other times it was incredible to share the trust and joy of a closer relationship to them. I am deeply grateful that I have been called upon to support my younger siblings and that they view me as someone that can help them through hard times and who will love them no matter what. I am also incredibly proud of them for taking ownership over their lives and reaching out to ask for help.

The headline this year has been my entry into doing standup comedy. It's opened a new universe to me and given me some of the things that were missing in my life—camaraderie, goals, the accountability of showing up to get results (laughter). It's helped my identify my voice and what's important to me through what I choose to tell jokes about, and what I choose not to tell jokes about. It's shown me the depth of some of my friendships by the warm supportive people who've shown up, sometimes more than once. It's demonstrated my husband's belief in me in that he is putting no expectation on me to make money, and he tells me to keep going. And I'm a little bit good—and working on getting better. I don't know where this chapter of my life is going, but I'm so incredibly grateful to live in NYC where a woman of almost fifty can find a stage to share her point of view on stage any night of the week.

Therepy. It's been incredibly hard to give voice to all the things that have happened, and all the things and emotions I struggle with. Talking about it all has made it more real, and has forced me to think about the impact to who I am. Am I grateful, absolutely, this has been a long and interesting journey, it's helping me to not only change the way I think and feel about myself, but how I am as a person and a parent. I'm going to be sad when this process comes to an end, but I will be, and already am happier, more stable, REALLY resilient, and I feel like for the first time in my life I may actually be winning my battle with depression and anxiety. I stand taller, and I feel more at peace,

My son enlisted. He deploys after college graduation. I was terror struck. His MOS (job) is one of the more dangerous ones. I was angry at people wbose actions led to this. Furious. Murderous. Then, two weeks later Trump said we are going BACK into Afghanistan. My terror skyrocketed. I am proud of him, he says if everyone said "not my son" who would fight injustice such as gay people being tossed off buildings? Acid thrown in women's faces? Human trafficking? Terrorists? It has always been his dream. I hoped after college he would be enticed by a salary and seek adventure on weekends. He is already a firman, federal first responder and EMT...so he WAS contributing. I am a slight bit excited he will get to see the world. I sent him all over it, but would be fun for him to see more. Praying for a safe deployment. And that I don't have my 4th heart attack.

This year has been crazy. 2 significant things happened to me. the first was getting sick. I think overall I'm grateful because I realized just how important being well is. I think I took for granted being well (apart from my mental health). Having constant migraines since March has really opened my eyes to issues with healthcare and just how difficult a persons life can be when they aren't well. I've not been able to walk short distances, go to work, eat, or even grocery shop. Event though it has been a long road and I'm still experiencing these migraines I think I'm much more perceptive about illness and how that really does affect every facet of someones life. The whole situation with partner completely breaking my heart and trust has been significant. Currently I'm resentful. I should've left and just been done with the situation 2 months ago. But I'm here and we are in therapy and I'm doing my best to not hate them but it's difficult because I'm so significantly unhappy.

This past year was rich in traveling - a trip to Australia this past September, a 51/2 week trip in Malaysia, Thailand (where I celebrated my 65th birthday snorkeling in Ko Lanta) and Cambodia, a visit to Paris and France with my daughter Naomi for two weeks, followed by another three weeks spent with my family, a visit to Gibsons, BC and Seattle, to spend some time with Naomi, and a trip to Hawaii with our cousins Doug and Mary. And, repeated trips to LA to see our two grandsons as well as several trips to Chicago to see Naomi and our family. This embarrassment of riches hit me in a variety of ways. Gratefulness for the opportunity and means to travel. Frustration at having my life so fragmented - I am a person who needs a lot of processing. Inspired by the beauty and richness of our world, curious and excited about learning about other cultures, enjoying meeting strangers and sharing experiences with husband, family and friends. Resentful that I do not have the time to process my experiences because they are coming to fast and furious and angry that I am struggling with ongoing health issues that make it impossible for me to enjy and then move back into my everyday life enriched and productive.

My private shame is that a small broken piece of me was grateful that Hillary lost. There was so much transparent misogyny in both the primaries and the run-up to the election, and people STILL. WILL NOT. ACKNOWLEDGE IT. People hated Hillary, and they wanted her to fail, and I wondered whether, no matter what kind of job she did, it would set us back for years, decades, centuries, years of her being dragged through the mud, blocked at every turn, berated for every concession she had to make… I worried she WOULD make a mistake, because of course every president is bound to make a mistake, and we would all be undone. At the same time, I was ruined by Trump's win, I would've shat on a parade of Bernie or Bust folks if given the opportunity… we somehow arrived at a place where every road seemed like a bad road. But the Hillary road would have been GOOD if people'd let it be. I did get excited and tried to get Kate to let me go to the polling place and vote for her if she got stuck at work. It was a moment and then the moment was gone and it was really almost never a moment because they wouldn't let it be, for women. Anyway don't tell the Feds. Kate managed to get away from work and I fell asleep in one world and woke up just in time to be carried into another. Also it was my fault because I wanted the Cubs to win. Also because the second I set foot in San Diego a few days before the election it felt hallucinatory, like walking around in an acid trip, and that hasn't really dissipated, and I should have known. Also I just bled, I bled and bled and had period after period whenever I saw Trump on TV. The warning signs are there, were there, have been there.

There are just so many. Many people are calling 2017 a "trash fire" year. Every time you think it's the lowest point...it gets lower. Donald Trump is actually the President - and continues to be despite everything that has gone horribly and terribly wrong in his few months in office. Then in September of this year (just September) there have been three massive hurricanes and two major earthquakes. It kinda feels like the end of the world. Between the nation being in such a terrible place, mother nature trying to shake us off, and just this general sense of foreboding...yeah. I'm gonna be happy if I get to do this next year - it might be the start of the Hunger Games and I'll be on the run.

This year I traveled by myself across the world! I went to Greece and navigated through international airports met up with Ben! I pushed myself SO far out of my comfort zone and I am so proud of myself! I got to see things that I have only dreamed out seeing and made amazing things happen for myself. I am grateful that I got to do this, and it has helped me become more confident in myself. This year I am going to go Israel, I have plans for Paris and Scotland and even possibly Argentina! Taking this trip allowed me to see that the whole world is open to me, I just have to try.

The one thing that pops up is Trump's election as president. It has changed me and not for the better. I used to be more engaged with current events, but now I ignore them more since they make me angry. Trump has the qualities of the "Ugly American" that I abhor: rude, ignorant, loud, boorish, selfish, immature. I question how someone could go into business with him, or even return a phone call from him, let alone vote for him to be president. He is so obviously corrupt, so obviously ruled by money, it saddens me. Being angry and sad is not a good state to be in.

I am grateful Trump got elected . The Democrats have come out so strongly against any religion and Biblical values ,most Republicans were like them except in talk , which was proved to be only talk by their current actions . It's still going to be a battle , but at least we have a chance .

I finally left a job that was killing me, mentally and emotionally. I was so fearful of leaving something that I was familiar with but eventually couldn't stand working somewhere where I couldn't live up to my potential. My new job has allowed me to blossom into the leader I always hoped to become. I get to go to work every day and do something that I love while making a difference in my community. I feel like my contributions are worthwhile (for the most part) and wish I'd had the courage to leave my old job much sooner.

There is a new kid at school that I've made really good friends with, and the year before, the new kids were kind of annoying. I'm super thankful, because it felt really good to make friends with him, and I think it is a friendship that I will really enjoy.

Marina moved out of the apartment and we didn't talk for months. Now I don't feel resentful. I'm so happy we are talking again. I still feel sad and like a part of me is back there, where we still lived together and where we were so close that it I suppose it became unbearable. Instead of understanding all the aspects of it I've healed by letting it go and moving on but that doesn't feel completely comfortable to me though it also doesn't feel wrong.

Having a very bad birth experience, a premature and sick baby who was operated on. Being by myself and having to be responsible for this new life, needing support and not having it. Needing to lean on my mother and then having her disappear after a stroke. It shook me to my foundation but I found the strength to battle on through. It made me determined. I pumped breast milk for threee entire months so that my baby would get the best nutrition she could until she could latch on. When she finally did it was excruciating. I stuck with it even then. My husband started back at work and we've seen little of him since, so I have done 90% of raising her with no family or help nearby. I have sent messages to my mother and photos of the baby everyday day to help her be motivated to get better. I have done my best. I am proud of what I have achieved and hopeful that things will always get better. It's made me realise for the first time really, that things can go wrong. But that you can't fall apart, you have to fight and stay positive. One thing that I read recently was that self pity makes things worse, there is always someone worse off than you and no one wants to hear how bad you've got it because they're going through things too. If we all complain about our lot then life becomes an eternal pissing contest. This stuck with me. I want to be more positive too

A significant event: the election. It threw me into a giant depression. The cause: Donald J Trump. He is trying to divide this country and bring back racism in a big way. It is incredibly disheartening that I voted for a woman I didn't even LIKE or TRUST, I can't stand Hillary. And we lost (which I blame COMPLETELY on her arrogance and laziness), we get the worst president the US has ever had to offer. He's not well read, has a narcissistic disorder, and could be a complete sociopath. He cares for NOTHING but himself, and when the media conflicts with his sometimes "fabricated facts", he calls them "fake news." It's BULLSHIT. I have gone up on my antidepressants and can NOT see an end to this hell on earth.

I had surgery, meant to stop severe pain. I was hopeful. And it helped - but not completely. Then I spent months trying, with my doctor, to find the way to finally end it. It has been a rollercoaster of anxiety and struggle and regaining and then losing hope. I'm simultaneously optimistic that I'm at the end of the tunnel and frightened it'll never end. I can't wait to start life post-pain. I hope it comes.

I gave birth to my first child. It was beautiful and the most physically demanding experience of my life. I am so grateful to have had a smooth delivery and to have a healthy baby. It was challenging (and continues to be hard at times) to become a mother just over a year after my own mother died. It makes me sad that my daughter will never know her grandmother and there is a real hole where my mother is missing. I hope to be able to bring my mother to life for my daughter by telling her stories about my mom.

On November 8, 2016, our country elected Donald Trump. There aren't many words adequate to explain the trajectory of that day in my head - from waking up hopeful and energetic to the long run I took that evening south along the lake. I'll always remember the picture I took at sunset that day. And I'll remember that as dark as that night was, the sun came up the next day - and it's kept coming up ever since. The follow-up to November 8 - besides every day from then on through the rest of my life, probably - would be January 21, 2017. The Women's March nationally, but particularly in Chicago, was like nothing else I've ever experienced. The amount of anger, frustration, and passion channeled into positive energy - what else could be a more fitting antidote to the hatred gripping so much of the rest of our country? The day after the election, on the phone with my mom, I remember thinking that none of the work felt worth it. I couldn't have been more wrong. This is exactly why it's worth it.

I had my second child. It made me much busier. I am greatful to have two health children.

I am re-writing my original answer to this question. When this first started I was VERY depressed. However, since then I had a HUGE epiphany. This leads to answering this question. This past year was all about my questioning of my own understanding of the world. This caused a great deal of distress. It started when at the beginning of the year when I was really excited about Bernie Sanders and then devastated by Donald Trump. The year continued with Rene using me as a glorified (unpaid) administrative assistant. Carol, micro-managing everything, and Bob questioning everything. Me, in the middle, thinking that it was me. They were right and I was wrong. I was resentful, depressed, and completely unmotivated. What happened to the girl of 2015 that knew what she wanted and where she was going...that girl was lost.

My niece was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder. As a licensed mental health specialist I was able to warn my sister and her husband that their daughter was suffering from a mental illness and not simply acting badly. It has strengthened my relationship with my sister in the long run, although she did not want to believe her daughter was mentally ill. Mental illness runs in our family. It destroyed our childhood, our parents ability to be there for us and eventually took my father's life. We are, to this day estranged from our brother and now his son who inherited the genetic disposition for drug use and alcoholism as part of dual diagnosis mental health illness. My sister's daughter becoming mentally ill now puts our brother and his sons struggles in a perspective closer to home for my sister and her husband. At this time we are pulling together as a family to support each other and support my niece who has a loving husband and two sons. We hope beyond reason that we can successfully help her weather the storm and remain intact--against the odds we have come to know so cruelly in our own young lives.

The most obvious experience that has happened in the past year was my mom's death. It was so sudden, yet an inevitability that I never wanted to think about. It's hard to comprehend because it just happened; I wasn't there, didn't see it happen, only came back to its occurrence. I have been coping surprisingly well over the past three months; I don't know what my state afterwards would have been if I had been there over the course of the 48 hours that everything happened. People tell me that it happened that way for a reason, and as much as I don't believe in things like that, I think it's the only explanation that brings me comfort. I don't know how I'm feeling; it's an adjustment. Some days I feel totally fine, other days I have a dream that everything is normal and I wake up sad, realizing what isn't. The stages of grief are fluid; I don't know where I am at some points. I have accepted it, but still little things like Yom Kippur bring me back to emotions I haven't felt so strongly in awhile. If there is a silver lining, it's that my family has never been closer, and I am able to be a bit more introspective about things with legitimacy.

I turned 50. Grateful to be alive considering I lost a 50 year old acquaintance and a 57 year old dear friend to cancer this year. However I am not quite where I envisioned I'd be at this point. It's a mixed bag. In some ways my reality quite surpasses my imagination. I have a powerful imagination nonetheless and I really spent quite a bit of time considering my station this year. I celebrated well and felt the bittersweetness of a life half over.

Moving to the place i am now. Moving from our parents home i grew up in was very hard thing. I didnt know till the 3rd day i had to move where i was going... i had an anxiety attack... i was freaking out so bad...my flesh just crawled every day...sleep was y escape...i knew the Lord would come thru...but not knowing was horrible... and of course the devil also played mind games with me. It is so strange that GOD can build a person faith in Him thru these kind of storms in life....but it really does... when i finally got to the new place, i felt the shift happen almost immediately... God came thru for me in ways i never thot... i have such peace... its awwesome!

The biggest and most profound experience I've had this year was getting a boyfriend. This is the first real, serious relationship I've had in my life. I've dated other men, but it never felt real/committed/permanent. This is the first time I've actually called a guy "my boyfriend" and can actually feel confident about it. I feel proud. I feel grateful, excited, and happy. I also feel a little scared and a little nervous, but in a good way. I've never experienced this before, so I know there will be bumps in the road, but so far I'm confidant about it. I know I'm going to learn a lot, and have a great time at the same time.

My partners cancer has recurred. This has devastated us both. I'm very very afraid that this will shorten Chers life.

Probably the most significant event in my life this year was when I broke up with my ex. I was 30 at the time, and we genuinely believed we'd spend the rest of our lives together. So I was utterly heart broken when we broke up. I broke it off, but nevertheless, I was left shattered into a million pieces. It took me a long time to mend myself, and in some way I think I'm still going through that process. Whilst it was the toughest time to get through, I'm grateful it happened. I was very unhappy towards the end of that relationship. Things were unravelling very quickly and messily (? - not sure if that's even a word). We were arguing a lot, and I began to question myself and my self-worth. It didn't take long for my self-confidence hit rock bottom. I kept on thinking it was somehow my fault that the relationship wasn't working. That it was my fault my ex didn't appreciate and value me. That I had to fix things, and that if I broke it off, it was because I had failed to make things work. It also hurt my ego that my ex clearly didn't love me as much as I loved him. Since the break-up, I've done a lot of soul-searching and self-loving. I've always dabbled in yoga and meditation, but I've now taken it up more consistently. I even signed up to a 10 day silent mediation centre, which definitely tapped into a part of me I'm still continuing to explore. It's taken me awhile, but I've also learnt to truly love and enjoy being single. I've also learnt to be grateful and appreciative of all that life provides, including family and friends who support you through thick and thin. I truly believe everything happens for a reason, so I'm ever so grateful for this experience as I may never have grown into the woman I am today otherwise. Who knows, I may have eventually come to discover all of this sometime much later in my life, but even so, I'm certain this experience has fast-tracked my development and growth (physically, mentally and spiritually) in a way I can't even begin to describe.

Towards the end of 2016, I felt the call to complete my 200 RYT training. I was overwhelmed by the prospect of doing so given the time and money that would be required, but I somehow knew that it would all work out. At this point, I have only one more 2-day training to complete and a paper to write and it has been a wonderful experience. The last training took me into the philosophy of yoga and the scriptural texts that accompany it. I LOVED IT! It has opened my heart and mind to move beyond the dogma of religion...I am choosing to move beyond being a "Martha" (Doer) and becoming more of a "Mary" (Be-er). I know that somehow this is preparing me for a greater purpose and I am learning to TRUST the process. And so it is with a heart full of gratitude and a spirit full of inspiration that I am moving into a new year.

This year has been a year of pain, fear, and loss. Last September 2016, I took a job as a paraeducator working with a 20 year old autistic student. I was hit in the face three times. It was culture shock for me having been raised in a peaceful home. He hot hard; I would black out and see stars. I dreaded coming to work. I wanted to quit several times, but I didn't because I wanted to be a mother and I needed the health benefits. In November, I got pregnant, which made it difficult to play a convincing male role in Fiddler on the Roof in December. Finally in June, my job ended with the school year. I was out of danger and could move on with my new life as a stay at home mom. Then on July 25, my husband fell on a ladder breaking four ribs and lacerating his liver. He had healed quite a bit by the evening of Friday, August 18, when we drove to the birth center. The following evening, we rushed across the street to the hospital. The baby was stuck. I hadn't eaten or slept. Pushed for a few more hours until her heart rate started decelerating. She was born by emergency C-section at 5:41 am on Sunday after 36 hours of labor. The second day at the hospital, our baby girl had a stroke and suffered significant losses in both hemispheres. We were devastated. She was rushed to the NICU. When I was discharged from the hospital, I simply moved into the NICU with her. On the ninth day, I hemorrhaged; blood poured out of me and I passed out within minutes. I was readmitted and nurses worked quickly to get all the clots out. Post-partum depression hit hard after this. I was too tired to even sing to my daughter. I insisted on antidepressants. We spent 20 days in the hospital. I had to give up on my dream of breastfeeding. Now it is Rosh Hoshannah and we are home. I'm feeling much much better, both emotionally and physically. I am grateful for the perspective this year has given me and relieved to have a break from the nightmare.

This past year I fell in love quickly, suddenly, stupidly, and knowingly of hurt. He broke my heart, quickly, cruelly, and truly. Then I broke anothers. Someone very pure and very special. Someone that I wish I could have loved. & I've loved a lot, I think. Many have loved me too. This time I learned the most from loosing it while I was leaving it. Here it is: -----You can love and accept yourself even though someone you love does not. ---You can feel sexy and beautiful in your flawed skin even though someone you love does not. You can want happiness for others even though you know you cannot give them happiness or receive their happiness. I am relieved and inspired but I am still sad. Sad to not be in their lives daily. No resentment. not good for the spine. Grateful I will be in time.

I turned 40. I was sad cause it was the first birthday without my mom and wondered what she would have said. I was grateful because after losing her and my cousin only a few years older than me I realize growing old is a privilege not everyone gets. Relieved it wasn't such a big deal and so happy I got to meet a giraffe and go upstate and see nature and drink wine with someone who loves me.

More physical pain. It’s restricted my activities and time with family. I’m grateful for the times I’ve felt good and been able to enjoy family and daily experiences.

I had a great 2 week vacation in Europe and would like to hopefully spend the summer again but longer. I was thinking about teaching English to earn an income while I am there.

That Dori was born. That is the first sognificant event that is oming to my mind. One of the hings that was really significant in that is that I felt I was intreduced to a whole new form and dwapth of love which I didnt knew before. This emence unconditional love to a creatire that was just now born. Preaty amazing feeling. More things that was significant in that ecwn was that I felt so much for Shany and in my wish to be with her in that, and jn general, it brought all the famil together and changed us from the moment he was born. As well, I started to think about the wish that I will have children.. it is even strange for me to wrote it here, black on white... but yes. While seeing this wounder and the love and the beauty of creation a human being I started to feel jn me thouse maternal feelings and wishing for it more... it came also with that mosy of my friemda feom home atarted to have babies .. and I know that when the time will be right for me it will happen. I was maybe feeling inspiered and longing for this, with all that it is indicating as well.. ike partnership, home, love :)

Well my business is doing well and I completed two triathlons and two solo performance shows. Alim grateful for these events. There were also two deaths in my family and the world events: Trump's election, two earthquakes and three hurricanes have left me shaken and helpless.

This year was very significant! When I last filled this out, I had just moved back to the USA from Australia. It had been about one month and I was so excited for what I thought would be a short period of unemployment. It ended up being six months of mostly not working, stressing, and feeling like a lost failure. Finally in March things turned around. I went to Palm Springs with Jordyn at the end of February and we both needed some life planning. I decided to do whole 30 in March and vowed to find a new life plan. Well in March I did do whole 30, which kicked off some weight loss that I'd wanted to happen. I also got my job! At the end of March I was offered my job at Literacy Trust and moved to New York two weeks later. I stayed with Jordyn for a week then sublet Fanny's place for two weeks. I found my apartment, moved in, bought a bunch of shit, and started my job. I then promptly brought Nina to New York, which was stressful. I also had my first little love affair post-heartbreak. It was really good for me. Really nice to feel wanted and desired again by someone who is very kind. Although it didn't work out, I appreciate Ryan's role in my life, and I feel that first mini-relationship was significant.

I was very naive and trusted to a stranger (Seumas) my whole sense of well-being by moving in with him after he said he'd support me while studying for boards. The experience was the worst experience I have had in quite a long time; he completely bait and switched me and tried to then claim that it was my fault. I am resentful for the experience. I am happy that I had met Michele Renninger who helped me through the darkness.

I am extremely grateful for my new job and my new colleagues. We have fun, we like each other, we are doing something new and fun, I'm learning a lot. I can't say enough good things about it. I'm also relieved because we need the income. Losing my job was definitely the best/worst thing to happen to me. I'm inspired because I've been meditating on a daily basis for nearly a year. The other significant event was my daughter's bat mitzvah in June which came off beautifully. Deep down I think it meant a lot to her.

I yielded to temptation 3 times and had thought I was stronger. It caused me to reflect, and understand that I need to resist being near the temptations until I can be strong enough to deal with them successfully.

This year, my daughter Lucy was born. She is the first child for Megan and I and it has been the most amazing experience of my life. There have been times where we have been more tired than I have ever been but holding Lucy is my arms is the best thing I could imagine. I am grateful for this experience, I am challenged by it and I am more full of love than I knew was possible.

I threw several tantrums on xmas out of jealousy when I attached meaning to my sister walking around in a towel when my boyfriend was present. I was rude to my family as away of directing attention back on to me. I was full of resentment and gave everyone the silent treatment or screamed at them and insulted them...my mom sisters brother boyfriend and his mom. I could t stand for ten to be happy if I was miserable. I feel guilty and ashamed. It affected me negatively bc I need to offer amends and idk what I can do to make it right.

Moved to Seattle. I'm sad to leave my friends, family and my puppy in Iowa behind but I'm excited for the new opportunities that the Seattle area has afforded me. I am inspired to become a part of this new to me Jewish Community.

The 2016 presidential election was so devastating. I didn't think it was possible we could be so stupid nor did o think it would actually happen this way. I didn't sleep at all that night and then we had trial that afternoon. I'm still resentful, sad, angry, but inspired to do good while disquiet about possibility of complacency runs rampant.

Writing my first album. I think it gave me a lot of perspective in terms of time. I thought it was going to take so much less time than it did. But also I think it gave me some artistic faith in myself. When I first went about writing it I was more interested in just putting something out to put something out, and i assumed that it wouldn't be great, or a true reflection of myself as an artist. Through the process of slowly writing the album I feel like I've uncovered a lot of things about myself as an artist. The album isn't out quite yet but Im done writing it and I'm honestly very proud. I didn't thing I was going to make something that i thought was truly meaningful but I did. Even if it's only listened to by a handful of people, I'm happy with it. And I think that's a really important thing as an artist

Oh wow. There's more than a few to choose from this year. I guess what I'm going through right now has to be up there. It started with signing up to the Fellowship program at the Centre for Sustainability Leadership, in large part due to dissatisfaction with the systems I work and engage and a desire to engage with the to instigate meaningful change. During our media and communications retreat I had a meltdown while reflecting on the concept of home. I looked back to my time in Northern Ireland, and all I saw was pain and suffering. There was pain and suffering, but that, of course, is less than 1%. I had an incredible, joy and love filled up-bringing, and if anything am grateful for the struggles of Northern Ireland which gave me a perspective of privilege that I would otherwise not have. How has it affected me? It started a shift that has changed everything. The narrative that I tell myself about our world has shifted. Previously I saw my role in the world as helping to inspire positive change in the every day, particularly the broken systems we all work within, but the narrative always maintained that civilisation would survive. I now believe that civilisation as we know it is dead. It's a slow death, but an inevitable one, and I've been breaking myself trying to withstand the avalanche. If I keep working myself this way, I'm going to be in a hospital bed or jaded when things get worse, when help is really needed. I want to prepare myself for that time, so that whenever things do get worse and opportunities for change open up, I am there to greet them with open arms and a warm smile. How does this feel? Relieving. On a scale I can barely describe. I feel spacious. Like the weight has been lifted from my shoulders. It will at times be back on my shoulders, of course. In those times I will be rested, and ready.

We bought our first house. Overjoyed. Overwhelmed. Exhale. Grounding. Putting down roots.

I met and began dating someone who I am seriously considering marrying. It's affected me in a very positive way in that it's forced me to deal with my life issues in a proactive way (because I now have someone in my life who requires me to be strong for her). I am very grateful for this, as it's helped me wake up to the fact that I've been missing so much about what's beautiful about life: connection, personal growth (in every way), going on our personal journeys, discovery, travel, etc...I actually am relieved because it's forced me to take on a direction, and I was missing that. So it's been inspriing.

Dad followed Mom to the hereafter and left me in charge

Koan fell apart, I lost my job as did Carl, we had to start from scratch and then we had a baby! And in between all that, there was Ben (and his mum, his mince pies, and the sorry end to his dad), and our office in Keynsham, and some shocking clients and some horribly sad family falling-out after Gina's 60th, and being asked to move to Cambridge, and every bloody possible expensive thing going wrong with the bloody car. Emmeline started Rainbows, we had to stop ballet lessons and haircuts (because we couldn't afford it), Ros started school, and Adam got married. We were, I was, devastated by the collapse of Koan. Gutted. Terrified. I was pleasantly surprised that we as a couple pulled together into a team, though, and although it was difficult,and Carl is arrogant and opinionated, we've started to come through the worst of it now, I think. I think we're stronger? We're definitely more broken. But, and this might seem odd, not broken in an awful way. We're like Japanese Kintsugi pottery - broken apart, jammed back together, and we've somehow created something tragic but beautiful with our jaggedy shards. Toby was probably what saved us from being really nasty to each other, although obviously my mental health was buggered after. We're both pretty clear that I can't get pregnant again. I do resent that. I'm not sure how Toby saved us - maybe actually we saved us, both of us are so stubborn. I definitely do not feel relieved, or comfortable. I'm glad we have more direction, but in no way do I feel fulfilled, or like I'm achieving any sort of potential. I'm hopeful that if we do end up in Cambridge,at least it might be an opportunity to create some sort of success story. I'd love to find somewhere to do the Montessori training,or actually qualify as a bus driver, or pilot, or *something*. I'm never doing enough. Nothing that happens ever seems to change that.

Donating my kidney. Extraordinarily grateful and thankful that I am in such great health and that I had an opportunity to share that with someone, who is doing well. Very,very appreciative of the wonderful family,friends, school, and shul communities that supported us all.

BF and I moved in together almost a year ago. It was a learning experience for both of us, because neither of us had lived with a romantic partner before and we were a little nervous about what extra pressures the change would put on us as a couple. It turned out really well. We've gotten better at talking through conflicts because more have come up (side effect of being roommates) and we've realized the importance of having actual dates, rather than counting any time we spend together as "quality time". I feel like living together has made us closer as a couple, and I'm excited to take the next steps together.

Bariatric surgery changed my life. Down 110 lbs. Diabetes gone sleep apnea gone high blood pressure gone

Business grew quiet.left me time to reflect. I read a lot and realised that the most important thing for me now is to live in today and to be present. If I had not had time to read a book and understand this, I would not have learnt something that I think is hugely important

In the year 5777, I became officially Jewish. After years of searching for an identity that felt real, I am at peace. It is a quiet contentment that, more than anything else, helps me be at peace with an inner self that I have long struggled against.

Well, if last year was the year of my mother's health issue, this year was A's. I was not surprised that he ended up in the hospital though I certainly was both relieved and resentful about everything to do with it. he does seem to be back on track now. I was and continue to be deeply grateful for his kids jumping in and helping. I don't know how I would have coped without. They continue to be a light in my life even though they are not my own children. I suppose I am inspired to cope better with my own health issues. That turns out to be hard because when caretaking, it's easy to see where the other person went wrong, but hard to not grab every opportunity to soothe yourself, and my self-soothers (I assume this is something generally true as well) are not particularly healthy. Yes, I need to address it, not just think about it, but that is very difficult given that it certain ways, the situation continues.

Taking the kids to the beach for the day showed me i am more than capable of caring for them by myself. it was a great day and they will remember it

I am always grateful for every waking moment and every opportunity that I have to live life to the fullest.

Having a second child has brought out my nurturing instinct, luckily! Every day watching her grow is a gift. Trying to balance her needs with those of my older child and myself (and my husband, from time to time) has forced me to be more creative and organised, so I am grateful for that. Resentful, of course, that I don't have much time for myself - but that's not because of the baby, that's because of the preschooler. And relieved that she's healthy. And inspired to have another!

I moved to London. I wanted to do it and I did. Thought it would give me greater perspective on the world and cultures. It did but in the end i was surprised at how similar things were in so many ways. People, especially in big cities are very much the same.

I got in a fight with my sister. It was a very negative event, and I held alot of anger for many months. I have since forgiven her and myself and will avoid all of it from now on. I think it did create a lot of growth however.

This is a tricky one. I feel all of the above quite honestly. I am grateful that I have had the opportunity to grow and learn in the past year. I'm grateful that I have had the opportunity to build a stronger relationship with my Rabbi this past year which was one of my goals last year. I am grateful that in the coming year I will be traveling to Israel. I feel resentful that I have learned that my children both have inherited the genetic disorders of anxiety and depression from both sides of our families. I have spent the better part of the last year beating myself up about my shortcomings as a mother. I have especially done this with my 20 year old son. There were so many missed opportunities that I can not get back because time cannot be taken back or retraced. I have beat myself up about instances where I was a selfish parent. At the same time I am grateful that I was able to celebrate 25 years of marriage to my best friend this past year. Our love has grown. He is more than I ever hoped for or imagined. I am also grateful for my new adventures in Jewish life. I am grateful for God's love.

My cat got hit by a truck, and took it like a tank!! She was into a full recovery in 3 months, and is back to being the reckless family member. On occasions she does sneeze, but its a big payoff to the alternative.

There are 2 experiences, the first a horrible low and the second a wondrous high. Number 1, of course, is the 2016 election. Every time I think I'm adjusting to all the crazy that is out there I remember thinking how millions of people voted not just for greed and selfishness, but for racism, misogyny, and abject stupidity. It no longer makes me want to cry, but I will never forget the feelings of hurt, betrayal, disappointment, and abject horror which made me curl up in a ball on the floor and weep the morning after the election. Number 2, of course, was my son's Bar Mitzvah. It was a beautiful weekend filled with family, his friends, our friends, and our amazing community. Every parent is proud of their child, and every Bar/Bat Mitzvah is amazing. I have no problem with saying that my child stood out, even among all the amazing kids out there. I truly wish that everyone in the world could feel how we felt that weekend.

There were several significant experiences. The that come to mind first is the death of a dear friend. It has made be sad, grateful for the time we had together, inspired to treasure the people in my life.

My mother passed away. In a lot of ways I am angry, a little bit resentful of God for taking her. I am hurting over it and at the same time I am grateful that she is no longer in pain.

A significant experience is that I finally forgot about checking to see if Windsor had e-mailed me or not. It's so good to not care so much now. I am grateful for this and relieved. At times I still feel resentful about what happened and I am curious if he is romantically with Margaret. I still associate him being in another relationship as a deficit with me. I'm also finally inspired to date though not really. I do realize I should. Another significant experience this year is that two ENL teachers have joined the Wilson staff. It's different to work with two other ENL teachers, to not be the only one. I'm glad that I am older now and wiser otherwise I'd be acting like my younger, insecure, jealous self. It is pretty intimidating that the younger ENL teacher is so talented and praised.

In this year i recieved a great attack. On my person and my free will.it has made me wont to fight even harder for what i believe in. And i am takeing it as an inspration to be more bold in my choices and more stonger than my advorcerys.

My grandfather died. i remembered that i saw him and he was hooked up to oxygen tanks and he couldn't walk. i came home from school on a Tuesday and i had soccer. i walked into my dads office and he had a blank look on his face. it was a face that a flight assistant made when something going on but they couldn't tell you. I hopped that what he was about to say had nothing to do with my papou. cause i loved him. so much. my dad looked at me and whispered under his breath, "your grandfather is probably not going to last through the night." for a second i couldn't hear anything. nothing mattered. i could hear my heart beating through my chest. i never felt something like this. i collapsed on the floor of my dads office. i have never cried so much in my life. what scared me more was my moms reaction. that was her dad. i came home and didn't go to soccer. i couldn't put a fake smile on my face and pretend everything was ok but know in the back of my head my grandfather was sick. very sick. and i ran downstairs and listen to Coldplays green eyes on vinyl. the feeling i had was a feeling of hopelessness i felt so open and so easy to manipulate. I've never seen my mom cry. cause she is the toughest prettiest woman i know and i wouldn't want to see her cry. i woke up in the morning to thumping down the stairs. it was a sound that sounded like someone who was dragging their feet i knew what was going to be said. i herd in the other room my moms body collapsing on the bed in the room next to me and her just letting everything out. everything. i fell out of my bed and had my back against the bed. and sobbed. my dad came in and picked me up in his arms and took me into the bedroom and i crawled next to her and repeated the words, "its gunna be ok."

Mt grandfather's surgery. Just because there was a high chance of death. It affected me greatly because I was always in constant worry (except when playing video games, so I did that a LOT) I am grateful that my grandfather survived, and extremely relieved when the doctors told us that he will be fine.

So its been a couple of weeks since I saw my dad, his old stupid boss is making him stay to finish a project and honestly I don't know how I'm supposed to feel, when I think about it makes me mad that he has to stay but then I get sad because I know he feels the same way.

I bonded with my friends and family, over the bad and good.

I went to London to have a family reunion and had so much. My family says that might have another one in 2020 in Florida. After London we went to Scotland visited there for five days and then went to Paris.

When I went on a fantastic trip to San Francisco It Changed me and made me more grateful to see some pore places in the city and it made me feel really lucky for what i have

Dad's death both hit me harder than expected and has been much less dramatic than his decline. We have been mourning him for many years, I know, but with the uncertainty of how our relationship might change with each phase of the dementia. I am now unpacking my grudges and unmet expectations (fair and unfair) as I look for the release of forgiveness. It is coming more quickly than I thought; he did the best he could, he loved us fiercely, he had untreated mental illness. But i feel keenly the loss around the "might have beens. "

This past year, I decided to leave college early and pursue a one-year Master's program at a different university. It was both an easy and a difficult decision: juxtaposing the feeling of never returning to a place I loved with the uncertainty and excitement of a new experience. The transition hasn't been easy - it's definitely been lonely and isolating at times, but I'm starting to find friends and find my way. I'm grateful to have had this opportunity, and I'm excited to see how the rest of this year plays out.

There is an event that was deeply healing for me and my daughters. I hosted a family gathering at my home for my younger sister, her new husband, and my two adult daughters and their children. My sister and I had been estranged for 20 years. Our birth family had imploded due to the chronic sexual abuse of my sisters and me when we were children. I am deeply grateful for our reconnection. My kids are happy. In three weeks we will gather in Tulsa at my niece's home, whom I have not seen in 20 years, for the next chapter of healing, friendship, and hopefully strengthening the family again. I'm anxious to see where this goes!

Daniel apologized for 22 months of bad behavior in May. I can't say just how much of a difference this has made. It's changed the whole tenor of our house and of our relationship. There are still problems, yes - and we're still dealing with the events that happened, the aftermath, the reactions that we each showed & the habits we gained. But the intent, on Daniel's side, is much less punitive towards me - it feels as if our foundation has been healed a little, and now we're dealing with aftermath and some surface stuff, whereas before it felt much more foundational. Hard to explain, but it seems as if my life - not just with Daniel, but all over - has changed for the better because I don't feel as if I have to always be on the alert to deal with something bad. And Michael - that's been significant. Good sex, someone who likes being with me, someone who thinks about things that would make me happy - pretty great. OK, we just got back from his 50th birthday weekend in Charlottesville, which was wonderful - bias alert. Still, all seems good and the relationship "feels" solid enough that I can relax into it.

After years of infertility, our daughter was born this June! She is 3 months old and PERFECT. A week after her very long labour and delivery I was readmitted to the hospital with postpartum preeclampsia, I'm mostly better now, but I am constantly reminding myself that it is OK to admit that I need and ask for help. I'm also inspired by how much my partner has stepped up to help and do what feels like everything around the house for me, for her, for us.

I was put into my postulancy for the priesthood. I still cannot believe it. So excited for this journey to see what God has in store for me.

I got a call from a headhunter for a job in NYC. I just may get this job. I am excited. But I am also a bit scared. I'm also tired.

The fucking fire happened this year. It caused me to lose myself. I am now building the life that I want because I am painfully aware of time that is fleeting.

I've experienced many significant events and changes this year. The very first however was saying goodbye to my previous home of 3.5 years, Frankfurt, and moving to beautiful Berlin. I think a number of factors attribute to me feeling home such as friend circle, job availability, living situation, location, etc. Frankfurt provided all of these things and so does Berlin. The transition was actually rather smooth and for that I am grateful. I do miss certain things however like very good friendships which must now survive over long distance, the opportunities provided by the large airport and central location but on the whole I am excitied and hopeful for the new possibilities this large city presents.

I gave my brother my kidney. I returned to work at Stanford. I am proud of both choices. Extremely. I feel the joy of those choices every single day.

Was made redundant and offered a new job, felt grateful and lucky to land In to a new job, but resentful that I'm still stuck in a dead end job. good things have come out of it and im working on changing the dead end side of things

I lost 50 pounds after I have a health scare from all the weight . I am grateful and scared because I have lost weight so many times before only to have my self getting back to the same old lousy and compulsive habits

I got married! (And also engaged, a few months before that.) I don't miss the planning, but I am a little sad that it's over. People keep asking if it feels different (it was only 3 weeks ago), but between mini-mooning and looking for a new place to live and all the Jewish holidays, it just feels like we moved on to the next things! But I'm excited for what the future brings and so far being married is great.

I left my job at Ford where i was very secure, making good money, etc, because i felt complacent and felt like God was calling me to something better. Came to NH and my grandmother passed, so i guess i am grateful for getting to spend some time with her.

I broke up with Kyle, at first it was a relief, then it hurt, then I tried to cover the pain but became so broken and barren inside that it began to negatively affect my outer world. So much so that I didn't even know where my next meal was coming from. It's now a Blessing as because of this broken Spirit I discovered the Path of The Zorah, I was actually saved and I am rebuilding both my outer and inner temple. :)

This year, I got laid off from a job due to internal politics. My boss betrayed me. I think that hurt more than anything, but I was relieved to leave that painful situation. I then went traveling for two months to clear my heard. It was exactly what the doctor ordered. I felt free and light and stress-free. Being back home feels wonderful, too. I think about if I could have avoided the experience I had. I don't think I could have. And, sometimes what feels like failure is, in actually, just learning.

Got pregnant! It was an incredible experience just to be pregnant...friends rallied around me, tons of love and positive attention. I felt special, less urgency (or none) to prove myself, felt I was doing something important event though I wasn't "doing" anything. Felt proud of my body. Amazed by it and by the process unfolding. Not so much excitement/anticipation for baby as excitement about being pregnant and watching fetus develop. SOOOO grateful to close friends for showing me love, for Dori and Andy supporting me and bringing me to their house, to all the support from friends after birth....could go on and on. Haven't even talked about Scott - who came into my life March 29 and was present nearly every day after. And that followed 7 months of email correspondance!

I have a GREAT new teacher and i have bin thinking about and how people think about it because my great uncle is dying it is very sad.

This year we took in Victor's mom when she got too sick to live alone. It was so challenging but there were sweet times too. Having her here in the early morning before work and on the weekends was pretty special. Things progressed pretty rapidly and she passed in February, and there has been a pretty significant hole in our lives ever since.

Greg Retired!!!!!!!!! No more rising at 3:45 a.m. No more commuting to Northern Virginia every day. It has been 4 weeks now. Everything is new. Everything is possible. Everything is the same, yet different for us. We have to reshape our lives. He needs to find something to do--something beyond little projects around the house--so he can create and enjoy. Currently, he is still enjoying an unstructured life, but, he does seem a little lonely when I get home. He has gone from spending his days with company of colleagues to being at home. When I sub, he's by himself for six hours. lol The first week, he would greet me in the driveway. Actually, as the month has passed, he has found things to do. He has thrown himself into creating our annual Spooky Town exhibit. I expect he'll find other projects to focus on in the coming weeks. However, I hope he will find something bigger, outside the house, that will engage him fully. He is so smart and so passionate, I'd prefer he not fritter his gifts away too much on smaller things. I am so glad for him/us. This is supposed to be our 'Golden Years.' And, right now at least, they look like they could turn out that way. Here's hoping.

There have been many significant experiences in the past year to choose from. However because I've moved on to forget about this quite often, I choose to focus on receiving the judgement of my DUI last year. The DUI was in July, so in the previous year, but I went to court in October and again in November. I was unable to drive for 90 days and also just in extremely high anxiety because of the situation. I was seeing a therapist at the time, and it also contributed to showing the relationship that I was in at the time as unsustainable. I feel grateful that the judgement was as easy as it was. I feel extremely grateful that it did not impede my ability to get a great job. That I was still able to go to Israel and out of the country in general. I also felt very relieved. I think the time without driving was very good for me. Though I do have to admit that I am guilty to have drank an drive after that, I think living in DC now has helped me avoid that. That hardship also left me feeling inspired to hustle hard to get my life back on track. I worked extremely hard in that period of time without transportation and was able to achieve a lot because of that inspiration from hardship, which has been my fuel continuously.

I took a break from my marriage. I moved myself and my daughter temporarily to my mother's house. I needed to reclaim myself, my way of thinking, reacting and feeling. I wanted to deeply care for my self. I'm not sure I got that much of it but I was able to glimpse what might be possible. We are now living together again. Our marriage is slowly and painstakingly improving. I struggle because I resent that the whole experience seemed to become a referendum on my husband and his behavior instead of me and my needs. I spend a lot of time having to be clear that it's my turn to get some of my needs met. I am grateful that the disruption did not seem to deeply affect my daughter

This summer I quit my job and spent five weeks "on sabbatical" before returning to school to pursue a Masters Degree. What I thought would be five weeks of relaxation and well-needed introspection ended up being five weeks of pretty intense isolation (none of my other friends were taking a break like I was). I felt lonely, disconnected and sad a lot of the time, and simultaneously, I was furious at myself for "wasting" what could have been time spent learning new skills, reading, improving myself, and exploring. The last week, I took a trip; on this trip, it was only during the periods I spent with other people that I felt recharged, inspired, and content. As someone who has always strongly identified as an introvert, it was challenging for me to realize the limits and dangers of my comfort in being alone, and ever since, it's remained a challenge for me to balance my automatic tendency toward solitude with what I feel is an increasing personal need for belonging, social engagement, love, and personal problem-solving with others and in groups. This Master's program I'm in at this point... it's both a perfect place and an overwhelming place to be maintaining this balance. I'm inspired, but anxious, and I know that I'm putting myself under a lot of pressure... to put this lesson to practice straight-away.

I started a new job in March. I've been grateful in so many ways--the job has much better benefits, salary, supervision, my commute was cut in half--but there's been a mourning period, too. I stopped being able to go to the gym that had become my de facto community, my coworker numbers shrunk drastically, and the nature of the job leaves me fairly exhausted at the end of the day. I guess I shouldn't be so hard on myself--it takes time to find balance in any new adventure, but I didn't expect a new set of problems to arise when I left the old job behind. The isolation and loneliness has been harder to overcome than the daily dull rage that I had become accustomed to in the old gig.

I traveled to Bali to a yoga retreat with a person a had only met online before. We instantly clicked and got along very well and I am now lucky to call that person a friend. Bali was a great experience otherwise too and left me inspired. So much so, that I started a yoga teacher training program myself too. Hopefully in a year I will be a certified yoga teacher.

Healing kurs. Öppnade många sinnen. Kontakt med guider och bortgågna Själv utveckling Medveten om andning eller icke existerande andning vid rädsla och ångest av övergivenhet.

Hillary's loss and its concordant exposure of sexism has affected me deeply. I have been grieving but i also grew up a lot. I made deep soul mate type friends. I changed how i am w my daughter. I am trying to open to kindness and to thechard conversations. And to fighting for myself and for tjose w less.

This year I started working formally. I has been a long journey (in my perspective of course), and honestly for the most part it has not been very rewarding, I have not been able to identify what I want to do for the rest of my life. However (!), I have found a safe place and the motivation to continue to thrive in other places different than my job. I have found solace and satisfaction in learning French with classes and Japanese through an app and some anime. I have also found satisfaction in working out. However tired or in a bad mood I may be, doing any of these instantly makes me have a better mood. I desire to leave my job as early as possible, and although that may not be as soon as I would like, I know that I can make it if I continue with the other parts of my life. I still miss my University years, but I can become satisfied with my life with exercise and learning something new.

I broke with my girlfriend. Maybe she was the love of my life... And she doesn't know that I failed her; I betrayed her loyalty. And for that reason I could not follow with our relationship... I couldn't do it because I think that if I did it, it means that something was wrong with our relationship, may be later this could be worse... Maybe the things are not the same anymore... For all of this I made this decision. Sometimes I feel relieved because I think in all the good things that had my relationship... Sometimes I feel that later we can be together because our love is real... But sometimes I feel resentful because I make a mistake. So I have to accept it and go ahead. For me, for her.

I am a 52 year old lesbian and I got married in my church. I have been a member of this denomination (Episcopal) since childhood. I never thought it would happen in my lifetime. It was the most amazing experience. My bride & I were surrounded by a church full of love and happiness, sharing our love and happiness.

I received smicha. It was the thing that I have been fighting for, studying for, preparing for, dreaming of for years. It actually happened, with is both miraculous and crazy. I'm grateful. I'm relieved that I am no longer in school. I am sad that I am no longer in school. I'm afraid of what is next and if I am able to live up to what this now means.

I slipped and fell at work and knocked myself out and tore up my shoulder. The accident happened Feb. 28 and it took 5 months to get cleared for the TBI and I didn't have surgery for my shoulder until Aug. 4. It's been a long road to walk but I am grateful for all the support I have had along the way. It has also been a catalyst for me to get healthy and live a more active lifestyle.

One year ago my family of four (+ dog) was homeless for 7 months, living in a tent in the woods of Central Oregon after moving here to have legal access to cannabis from Florida. Finding housing last November was a pivotal moment in our lives. We were incredibly relieved, and inspired to get back on our feet. Since then we've only gotten better. I'm working at a job I love and that pays higher than any other I've had. Things can only go up from here.

I did a church transfer. I was ready for something different besides my old church, and I asked my caregiver if I could try her church. I did and I ended up liking it a lot! I used to fall asleep during sermons, not anymore. Mom, dad, and I went on a short trip to Vegas. It wasn't fun at all, we were there for a wedding. I guess I learned that I really don't like going on trips with my family. Not that I haven't learnt that lesson already! Mom gave the cat back to me that I had for 6 months a couple years ago. The reason I gave him to them was because he's needy and demanding. If he doesn't get his way he goes absolutely crazy! He was getting on my nerves a lot yesterday because he kept meowing and not coming to me when I called. Re-learning that I'm really not a cat person! I need to decide what to do with him. 43Things relaunched in Feb. I liked the site at first, but the developers have pretty much abbandoned it and spam is taking over. I think I'm switching back to PopClogs, because I like some of the features better. Lavabit relaunched after 4 years of being shut down because of a legal case. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lavabit I followed the case extensively, and I'm now using it as my primary email provider. I went off Prednisone after being on it for 2 years starting in Jan 2015. I'm now 50 pounds overweight and miss the adrenalin response, but oh well. I joined https://gab.ai, which is a free speech alternative to Twitter, and is a 300 character platform. I like it better, but won't be getting rid of Twitter anytime soon. I have too many friends there.

I divorced my husband of 14 years this past year. I feel relieved ,self-aware, and self-confident. I am quite grateful!! There is uncertainty from the disconnection as we attempt to navigate from this new place of singleness, but since we were never really whole from the start, the path ahead has no less definition than the previous one.

Recently I felt very let down by a friend/business partner. Her decision not to share her partnership with another friend left me feeling hurt and alone. When I tried talking to her about it, I realized that she didn't get it and I also finally understood why while I liked our partnership, it really wasn't/isn't all that I am truly looking for in a business partner. I still hope to find the kind partner that I am looking for. So I am a bit relieved, a bit sad and a bit hopeful.

My husband was diagnosed with anxiety, which he thought he was having heart attacks. I am grateful as it helped him realize he needed to stop self-medicating with alcohol. I am relieved that it was not a heart issue. I was resentful, but trying to get over it, that it took three separate trips to the doctors to get him to this point. I have mixed feelings about it that he is experiencing what myself and our daughter have experienced, but been ridiculed by him in some ways, for having (Anxiety) I am inspired to keep on believing that God makes a way to healing for each of us, regardless of our self-destructive ways.

This year has been a lot of panic and catching up with my life, and scrambling to get things done. It really wore me out, and has driven home the idea that I cannot get behind on my schedules, and things have to be done on time or earlier. I also have learned that I can't do all I'm trying to do on my own.

A very significant experience in my life was have my astrology chart done because it explains so many things and why they've been happening things that I've just been out of my control and I try and try to make better .

We bought a house! It was completely unexpected (we didn't think we'd be able to) & has been a blessing in so many ways. We receive so much help from friends & family when we moved. The out-pouring of love and support shouldn't have been a surprise but everyone was so generous with their time. We are still overwhelmed with thankfulness.

My parents and moved into assisted living and though I made up that life would be easier, their care has continued to ramp up and I feel exhausted by all that I do for them. The biggest thing being going to Tucson in the dead of summer to get their house empty because they sold it. Going through box after box of assorted papers to sort into keep, shred or recycle was overwhelming physically, mentally, emotionally and psychically. And though I felt resentful, I was raised to have the values that this is the only way I can be during this time of my parents' decline. And, thank God they moved. All this would have been much harder had they not.

I ran my first half marathon and it was so much more amazing than I thought. So so grateful

I realized my best friend was not really a friend. Ali and I have been calling each other best friends for years, but it took moving 30 miles away and reality jolt from another friend to make me realize she was never really good for me. She was toxic, she talked me down, she lied. I watched her do her part in ruining her own marriage. Hell, even the Scott thing (last year's "significant experience": he ghosted and stopped talking to me, so I guess it's significant too to know that it's not "me being crazy" when I like a guy so much as I can tell they're just being shitty guys and it worries me); while meeting him she tried to bulldoze the conversation, and then when I told her I was sad she gave me a "meh, at least he didn't waste your time." Ummmm, yeah he did. He wasted a month of intense crushing. He acted interested then ignored me. And my "best friend" can't even be bothered to support me. All the Google chats were her wanting attention because she was bored at work. She wanted her needs met but ignored my comments or concerns about my own life. She came to Dallas ONCE and had to drag her goddamn kid along, acting all "oh, haha oh my son WHAT A MESS it's so hard to be a beautiful mom who does it all I can't miss a moment with my precious baby" instead of spending a few hours with her "best friend". And I only got that designation because Anita moved away and (I assume) got sick of her shit for a while. I should have known back when she insisted on staying in a goof-around band with my ex; not just an ex, but a guy I had to block from my life because he kept harassing me. I had to change my Facebook password because he was spying on me from my old login on his computer. Later she fucked that guy while he was newly married! So I am grateful. I'm grateful to Ryan and Mary for pointing out the lies and how Ali was mean to me and they hated seeing me get treated that way. I realized I don't have to have someone I label my best friend just to have one. I can have friends. I am still working on believing that people like me (my birthdays aren't helping there) but I'm okay without a "bestie." ----------- Also I went to MaxFunCon & am about to FINALLY visit NYC again. I've started taking real vacations as an adult and it's really nice to have that freedom.

I moved into a new home seeking more privacy and quiet. It mostly was what I wanted but it makes me question why my immediate environment is so important to me.

This year I got engaged. I was shocked and surprised and I think totally ready for it. I am completely in love with my partner and I am excited to start planning a wedding. I am also feeling a little nervous because I like to self-sabotage and second guess myself.

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One experience was my sister coming up to visit me and my family. It has been 5 years or so since she came to Wisconsin. I decided I was not going to expect anything or have to prove things. Knowing whatever I did I wasn't going to get compliments or positive feedback most likely. I did want to show her my life. It was rainy most of the time and even visiting the farmer's market where I always run into people, I didn't see anyone. She kept cutting me off when i talked, never asking about me, or blowing me off when i did try to share. I realized, i wanted to show her how great my life is but instead SHE showed ME how great my life is. ALl the love I have, who I am. I respected myself in a new way, and in some ways, have more compassion for her and what her limits are. Kinda sad but freeing at the same time.

Colin was in crisis. I was scared to death that he would die. That he would kill himself. If I'm being honest - and if not, what the hell am I doing? - I DID feel resentful. He has a good family who loves him, a comfortable home, an incredible mind and enormous talent, and he was inches away from graduating, What the hell did he have to feel so depressed about? Of course, that was the part of me that was just so weary of being on high alert. I was so sad that dad had died, but at least I didn't have to WORRY about his dying anymore, and then this. Of course, depression isn't about any of that. He didn't feel worthy of being alive, or maybe it wasn't worthiness, but something even deeper - he didn't feel life was worth it. He just couldn't see himself being in this world. The fact that he'd felt that way for years, and that we never knew it was like a punch in the gut. Ultimately, however, I am grateful - grateful for my good friend who talked to him for hours and told us what was at the immediate bottom of things, grateful for the doctor who figured out the right medication to help him, and grateful for my own internal resources that helped him get back. Also, very thankful to God. Thank you.

I went through a period where my depression was really intense and I went to some dark places. It really made me aware of how fragile mental health can be and how quickly things can change. I'm partially grateful it happened and also relived. However, I'm also resentful as I went on a new medication that caused me to re-gain a significant amount of weight, which I'm now trying to lose.

I graduated college this year. I can't tell right now whether it should even be considered significant since it is such a common right of passage. But I also should not have to qualify my achievements and compare myself to others. At the end of the day, I did work hard to finish school and it is something to be proud of, but I don't want my significant accomplishments to stop there, and that is what worries me.

My boyfriend of two years--and the man I thought I would marry--cheated on me, dumped me, and then married the other woman six months later without telling me about it. How did it affect me? I am angry, resentful, and still sad. I was angry at the universe (and him, of course) because I didn't know what I'd done to deserve this level of pain. I loved him so deeply, and even he admitted that I'd been the perfect girlfriend, and that we'd had a great relationship and there was nothing wrong with it. In the last few months, I have come to accept that this was for the best. My life has changed in ways that are both good and bad, but I know that if we'd stayed together, I would never have grown up in the ways I have this year. I wouldn't have gotten sober. I would have moved to a state where I wouldn't have the career opportunities that I do now. And I would be married to someone who doesn't share my views on love and commitment.

I finally moved out of the apartment I've been in for the last 3.5 years! The first and only place I've lived in, in this city. So many memories tied to it of various exes and some really hard times in my life - and some really good ones, to be fair. Started dating both my current partners there, found out a lot about myself, had meetings with Kelly to think about leaving the country, started buying some of my own furniture...but also bedbugs, and fleas, and bedbugs again, and just being far away from work. It was good, I liked it, but it was past time to leave. I have a new place that's *home* now and I'm so happy to be there making new memories.

A significant experience that happened in the past year was the presidential campaign and subsequent election, followed by the unending anxiety caused by this unworthy person being president of the United States. My disbelief at the outcome of the election was soon followed by sadness and outrage at his first actions, which was followed by more of the same as every day has uncovered yet another layer of his inability to relate to leaders of other nations in a dignified and level-headed way. Just yesterday he called N. Korea's leader "Rocket Man." He was laughed at in UN. His anti-immigration and anti-DACA policies are tearing families apart. All over the country people are fearful for many reasons. It is very hurtful to see what he is doing to our country. One good thing from it is that all over the country, people are becoming united in their demonstrations of resistance.

I received my Doctorate degree. I am grateful and relieved that I was able to attain this goal. It has definitely inspired me to encourage others to not only keep dreaming but to work on their goals.

Speaking based on the turn of events that have led me where I am right now, I can say that losing my romantic streak has helped me a lot. I was investing a lot of energy into things that weren't fueling me, making me happy or helping me grow. I'm okay with the past. I'm so much happier in the present. And I'm okay being strong, even if it means I have to be strong on my own. I'm grateful because I'm finally free.

My mother died. And yes, I was relieved. Now we are in the Days of Awe. As I have relived every moment of my mother's and my life together and every moment of her dying experience, I must now put it in the past and live in the present. I am overwhelmed by thoughts of the past to the extent that I am not living now - and certainly not joyfully. My greatest sin of the last year is to be brooding, sad, depressed about what WAS. I must stop this sin and live my life, giving love to myself and my family. My mother is dead. May she rest in peace .

I met a guy who has taught me the most incredible and insightful things imaginable ... I am so greatful because everyday I'm learning something new I'm Rossini my mind and I am who I am today because of it

I had a panic attack at work and although this year has been great, loads of weddings, and love, I realised that something has to give. I can't carry on this way, I'm finding everything so overwhelming.

I was broken up with by the person who I felt was the love of my life--the only person who I have ever shared my deepest secrets with. It was a shattering experience. Never before have I felt so hopeless, as if in a single instance my newly unfolding life and relationship vaporized. I lost my appetite for two weeks and had vivid, nightmarish dreams--I could hardly sleep. My hair literally fell out of my head uncontrollably, clumps were coming out when I was shampooing my hair. It was a major test of faith--I am glad that instead of running away I clang tighter. Faith is the only thing that got me through this sober--other paths were appealing but I stayed on the right side of the road, I'm not sure if other people understand all this; I don't even understand all this. I have mixed feelings about it. On one hand I am much stronger, and consider myself more mature when it comes to relationships. I learned an immense amount about myself, the world, and judaism. However I also feel jaded towards relationships. I am apprehensive to open myself up like that again. I hope every day that this experience will lead me to find the right person to share my life with.

I held my grandmother's hand when she transitioned from this life. That day, I looked at her and told her that I got her. When we curled up to sleep, I told her I'd go with her. When she died, I did. As in, I left my body with her, and walked her out to god. When I walked out of the room to the quiet sleeping house, all I could feel was the lightness and great expansion of relief. It's what I always imagined Christmas morning felt like. I am deeply grateful and humbled by the experience, and every day that goes by, I feel like I lose a small part of it back to the human beingness of the grind. I am inspired. I am not apathetic. And I feel connected to something greater.

Well, my mother died in April, and I was married in May, and Alliance 7 became stable over April/May. I don't know which item has had more impact on my psyche. Frankly I don't know where to start and so have postponed answering this question for way too long. Jeanne's death--my finding her in her chair in front of the TV--hit me hard that day but turned into a physical pain that has lasted for months, on and off. My intestines have been cramping with some kind of holding pattern, and I have not felt like exercising or enjoying life much. And being married has frightened me. I had no wish to be married, but I had "married' Lisa in my head a year ago and I noticed that Lisa's insecurities noticeably diminished, so when she pointed out the financial benefits (health care) and legal assurances (hospitalization) I thought that she would benefit from being married--she was always a bit of a cat on a hot tin roof, since her past with men had not been stellar, she assumed I was always one foot out the door, no matter what i said to the contrary. But then, once we were married--two weeks after I found Jeanne's body--I started to feel--very gradually--Suffocated...? Trapped...? Stagnant? Un-free? I dunno quite how to put it, and it is passing as we get used to how to handle being married, but it has been stressful dealing with this unexpected and undesired psychological effect of a contract and a ceremony. And lastly, at Cyrun, I would have thought that the release of Cyrun being on edge because of Engineering issues would be a relief, but instead it appears to be a massive shock to my undermind--lower layers of my sub-conscious who are so used to living on adrenaline that they don't know how to stop--and this, too, has had very negative effects. So, all told, I would the "significant experience" of this last year has been this perfect storm of traumatic events, even if all of them can be viewed from very positive perspectives. So it goes...

This year has been a year of changes! I started a new job, became an aunt, had my boyfriend move to town, and I moved out on my own. My job change wasn't not entirely intentional, however looking back I now see what a toxic position I was in. My new job has offered me new challenges and opportunities to progress my career. My manager and coworkers are actively engaged in my ideas and input, which is a positive change to my prior job. When I learned that Nikki was born, I wept tears of joy, but also sadness that I don't live closer to her. Nikki is such an amazing girl and I'm so excited to see her grow up. I am now thinking more about moving back home to the PNW to be closer to family. Having Josh move to town was a big change because we have been long distance for so long. I think it was initially difficult to adjust because now we have to be more honest about needing our alone time, but I now feel like we have hit a good rhythm and stride in our relationship and I'm excited to see where things go from here. And finally, my moving out on my one was one of the best decisions I have ever made for myself. While it was a difficult transition, I am so glad to have given myself the space and alone time that I needed and to have healthy boundaries from unhealthy friendships.

I changed jobs after losing my job. I am grateful that I found a new job. Relieved. Surprisingly I am not resentful but I miss the interaction with my former co-workers. I always felt like the company was playing musical chairs and soon, I would be left without a chair.

I don't want to jinx it because it is still new but I think I found a job that I really enjoy. I started working with a new team earlier this year as part of a joint project and they asked me to keep working with them in April on another project. In July, I was able to fully make the switch to their business unit and... I got to pick my new manager, who had already been mentoring me on the side. I'm still doing the same work as before but I'm also helping out with sales. Due to the culture of the company and to the personality of my manager, I have a lot more freedom to set the structure and activities of my day. I didn't know how great that would feel.

Vespers service in San Miniato al Monte, Florence, Italy. Very simple--plainsong sung by the monks and the lay congregation with no accompaniment. Climbing up the hill ("monte" isn't much of an overstatement) with my game leg was hard, but well worth it.

got married. super grateful and happy.

I can't believe the state of our country - from the 2016 election to Charlotteville - the lack of civility, progress and respect is maddening! I am motivated to stand up and speak up and not back down.

My only child graduated from high school this year. She ended up having a rough year. I really felt sad for her, this was supposed to be a great year. There was a lot of stress. Two classmates were killed in a tragic car accident in November. She had an additional algebra remediation class to complete, which I did for her out of desperation and anger. I'm relieved that she graduated and that it's over. I'm happy that she got her cosmetology license and a full time job in a salon upon graduation. I hope for a much better year going forward.

I turned 80 just a little less than a year ago. In some ways,the date meant very little. In another, I was officially an elderly person. My sense of a short ground time is not new, but it's heightened. Now, in a couple of weeks, I will be 81. Part of the experience was a party, hosted by my daughter and attended by a marvelous variety of friends. I treasure the conversations of that afternoon.

We purchased our first home! We actually did it. I feel SO unworthy, blessed and grateful. I can't believe it's ours, even now.

I bought an engagement ring for my girlfriend and plan on proposing to her in three weeks while on vacation. I'm 35 and this will be my first engagement. I'm not too nervous about any of it, actually. I feel like I'm at a place in my life where I'm ready to get married and she's definitely the person I want to spend the rest of my life with. It may have taken me awhile to get here but it feels really good to have arrived.

My mom died from stage 4 lung cancer. I feel devastated even months later. Hardest thing to integrate.

My husband and partner of close to 30 years asked me for a divorce. Only he didn't use that word and had no idea how to go about doing it! I felt retraumatized and very sad that he didn't want to work on the marriage. It reinforced for me that the worst thing I could imagine being alone, single in middle age was coming true. I was furious with him. Because he could ask for a divorce but had no ideas about how to go about getting one - I had to do the work once again! I was so shaken up that I told him that I couldn't even think about it until I could forgive him and not to make any contact with me and to get out of the house NOW!

Loosing my cousin and September 19th earthquake in Mexico. It affected me because i lost someone who i loved and i saw how much destruction in families violence can cause, i got inspired to never stop trying to change my world, to inspire people to do the same. Mexico´s earthquake was one of the most painful and also beautiful experiences I´ve ever lived, it gave me hope to see how much we care about each other, the people went out and helped day and night, it is one of the most amazing shows of solidarity and compassion i have ever witnessed, i am SO proud to be mexican.

I became super depressed last year and have not completely recovered as of end of September. I am sad my company didn't work out but also a little relieved. It was very hard and frustrating and i did learn a lot from it and made some new friends. I am ready to move on.

The most unexpected, significant experience of the year was leaving my job for a new one. My professional field is the same. The job is, technically, the same. But it is oh so very different. My old place of employment was toxic, with a manager who would snap at you or denigrate you one moment and, in the next, tell you how wonderful you were and how much she loved you. The new job is challenging. It's a home health care job and I am dealing with younger, sicker people. The company has experienced tremendous growth in the past year. In the three months I've been in the job, many of the old people have left. But many talented people have joined. There is excitement and great potential. But even if the potential doesn't play out, I'm thrilled to have taken the risk and made the change!

I bought a home in one of the most expensive cities in the world. It is a big apartment for the standard in the city but toni compared to an apartment in a not so pricey city. The property to me makes me feel proud, accomplished, reinforced my saving nature, etc. on the other hand it reminds me how fortunate I am, how many people struggle and still won't be offered this type of opportunity. So grateful.

I GOT A NEW JOBBBBBB!!! Inspired to become even more

Mom died

I worked temp for the first time in my life. I was making a lot less than before, which was great for my humility but hard on my spirit. I found myself disappointed at the lack of trust shown to people in temp positions. At Driscol, they shared some of their bounty, but as a temp, I never felt trusted, and it really affected my mood and how I felt about the work, like they might ask me to leave any moment. I took the bus and walked to work, and it just felt really desperate. In January, I found a great full time job 2 miles from my home completely by accident. Now I'm doing work I really enjoy, for a company that helps people like my son. I'm still making a lot less than before, but the trust I'm shown here and how I'm treated makes all the difference.

Trump got elected. I remember sitting away from the TV while the election results came in. I was stress-drawing. I felt sick when it was called for him. Rather than listen to his speech, I went into my office and played angry music. My brain needed a break from it. I was horrified. I still am.

I fell in love with Ben around this time last year. It was a surprise to open my marriage, to know other people, and then to actually fall in love with someone. I am so grateful to know Ben and to love him. I have less fear of what it means to love two people. I have less fear about not knowing about what or where things go with him.

I marched in the Denver Women's March on January 21, 2017 with two women friends. This inspired me to speak up more, and not to hide my opinion because it may not be popular. I re-learned that not speaking condones those actions/opinions that I do not agree with. However, I am still in a depressive funk that I have battled the entire year. I have tried to become inspired, and grateful, and relieved. However, it only seems that i resent myself. Practicing yoga, has taught me that I need to 'pause' and listen to my breath; asked myself: what is making my breath short/long/shallow, etc, and how can I react differently, and offer compassion and empathy? Somedays, I am inspired to change, or make a goal, and start. However, I seem only to be exhausted and play trivial games on my Nook to avoid facing frustration, or feelings of rejection. I have had some good days. Motivation seems to be lacking, even though when I am active, it makes me feel better. I am lonely and overwhelmed.

We got engaged and we bought a house! There's so much happiness and joy in our lives. It's been amazing. I'm so excited to see what the future has in store for us

The almost death of my son. It has inspired me to behave differently as a parent.

When my mom died in April, I experienced a powerful growth event, letting go of my anger and resentment that had kept me a permanent teen. I now miss my parents more than I'd ever dreamed.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year was I became a Savta for the first time to a beautiful baby boy. I am so grateful that our family is growing and expanding and everyone is healthy and happy

Before last year's 10Q (which I skipped, oops!), my parents helped me to buy a house. But I didn't move into it until October of 2016. It was very much a fixer-upper, and so I spent the entire summer working on it with them. I don't even have words to describe how grateful I am to my parents for the help they gave me. I lived with them for two years (way longer than expected) after separating from my son's father. They helped us both so much, and I'm so grateful they're in my son's life. If it hadn't been for their financial help with this house, I would never have been able to buy a place of my own... not for years and years. The mortgage payments are expensive for a single, working mom... but it beats rent payment by a million times.

I accepted a new job at FCA in Denver this year. It was an exceptionally unexpected opportunity that I immediately accepted without hesitation. It's funny how things work out and how a "trust your gut" instinct can change your life because had someone asked me before the job was on the table, "would you want to live in Denver?", my response would have been, "No.". Denver has been a pleasant surprise. Every day this city reminds me I made the right choice. The mountains are beautiful, the locals are friendly and the transplants are excited for new adventures. The culture continues to adapt new personalities and identities while the weather remains stunningly sunny. My colleagues are incredibly fun, intelligent, supportive and grounded and my new and renewed friendships have been a blessing. Overall, I'm exceptionally grateful I said "Yes!" to this opportunity and this city.

Spending 6 months in the cruise department. It made me realize that never again do I want to work at a job that has no meaning or value to me, and does not bring me closer to my personal goals. It was totally not worth it to sacrifice 6 months of my precious life for a company that in the end of the day doesn't really care. Bottom line emotion: resentment. Meeting Danny was a meaningful one as well. I guess the only comparable time I was in love with someone like that was high school - Chechko. It's the feeling of powerlessness that surprised me the most. The lack of control over the situation that leaves you utterly vulnerable and unable to defend yourself. And also knowing that the other person won't do it for you. Feeling? A mix between grateful for having met this person at all, and deep deep sadness for knowing that we could never be.

Taking a whole month holiday in December, going to Marroco with my brother. Going to Austria with Andy was very magical, the Hunderwasser spa was amazing, I was feeling flying. Going to Toulousse with my brothers was amazing. Going to Machupichu and Titicaca was fantastic. My mum coming to visit and being able to hug her and hang out with her here, just both of us.

The most significant experience of the past year (16-17) has been prolonged unemployment with no income from me and my husband. We've had to sign up for government benefits. We have been given charity and opportunities for it. I've had to take money from my IRA. This experience and the accompanying anxiety has affected me greatly - I am willing to sacrifice for my children. I am willing to bankrupt my future for my present. I am willing to do new and difficult work in order to provide for my family. I am not grateful - I had empathy before this situation. I am somewhat relieved that in a few short weeks we will be employed full-time (with benefits). I am EXTREMELY resentful, but more than that I am RESILIENT.

My father died in early June this year. It was a really traumatic experience and ever since then I have been dealing with my mother who is severely depressed, and my brother who is mentally ill. It has been really rough.

I got a psychiatric service dog, Bowie. She has COMPLETELY changed my life. She has taught me that sometimes you need to put others' needs before your own. A few weeks ago, I was having a panic attack about going to class. But Bowie was able to get out of my head and I was able to quickly cover from the attack and make it to class on time. In the 7 or so years I've suffered from panic attacks, I have been able to recover from a panic attack without taking a nap and missing whatever I was panicking about. So Bowie is truly amazing, and I am so lucky to have her as my partner.

Just one? Well, since most of the rest will be political... I gave myself permission to believe someone wants to be friends with me. An honest friendship, where I say the things I usually hold back and am not timid about sharing my affection and my insecurities. I don't know how it's been not even a year since that happened. I don't know how I lived so long without that friendship. My life...isn't perfect. Some days it is unspeakably hard. But having someone there who will listen, and who will talk, and share their other friends, and more... It is beautiful.

My wife and I finally resolved our outstanding financial issues. It is a relief to have that "Sword of Damocles" removed; but, it is a daily struggle to keep our finances in perspective. I find myself wanting to grab the brass ring again and again, instead of walking the narrow path to our financial destination.

I have recovered from a difficult spinal surgery with a year's worth of pain, disability and hard work in rehab. I am both grateful and relieved to find out that I could improve physically, and consequently, emotionally.

Definitely getting in and beginning law school. It has changed my life so much, new friends, change in thought about my old friends, stuff like that. I am so excited about what I'm learning and what the future holds. I am determined to be the best I can be and to do well.

This year I packed up my DC life and moved to Utah! I was able to spend more than four months job free--(thanks Tracy and James for the place to crash!) and really lived it up with my family. It was amazing to draw closer to each other, work to understand each other, and feel the support of each other. I am feeling so blessed and lead to the perfect growing experience. A year ago I could have never imagined this!

Trump became took the oath of office of President. The whole experience has been a disaster. My taking part in the Women's March in New York City was uplifting. I went to Alaska, a very big trip. I am so happy that Gloria asked me. She was so helpful and I had a wonderful time.

In many ways, it's difficult to pinpoint a particular experience. It seems like the past year left me unchanged and that there was nothing that stands out. That, of course, isn't true. I completed my junior year of college. I created memories and overcame challenges that I will spend the rest of my life looking back on. However when I think of something that has helped me I think my new dedication to meditation stands out. It wasn't a monumental experience, but it crept up on me. Now it has become part of my daily routine and I am able to use it to calm my mind as I push through my senior year. It's a little thing that has had a big impact on me.

My mother died, just under a month ago now. I'd been mostly estranged from her for the past thirteen years - she was a drug addict and had serious mental illness and was abusive as a child. A few months ago, a cousin contacted me to let me know my mom was in the hospital with cancer and they didn't think she had more than a couple years left. I reached out and called, and the change was like night and day - she was kind, loving, proud of me, excited for me having kids and for my wife, and called me her son (I'm trans and she was NOT good with it when I came out a couple years ago). Her condition progressed rapidly and she died within a couple months of me finding out - I ended up getting to go back home, but I arrived literally two days after she lost consciousness. I stayed by her bedside for hours each day until she died, and even then I left hospice about 20 minutes before she finally died. I had talked to her for a little over two hours that night - about how the kids were doing and about Col and her work and my work, and about the family and how my cousin, who I was staying with and loved dearly, had no idea how to cut potatoes the same size for boiling. The last thing I said to her was that I loved her and we were going to be okay, and that I hoped she waited for morning but she didn't need to, if she had to go in the night that we would be okay. And then I left, and she died twenty minutes later. I feel broken, even a month later, and at times I devolve into a sobbing mess, feeling guilty and angry and shocked. I can't believe it happened at all, much less how quickly her case spiraled, and I can't believe I wasn't there for her in the moments when she would have wanted me to be. I struggle with trying to find good memories amidst all the horrible abusive ones, and then I feel bad for feeling that way. And more and more I reflect on how I'm parenting my own kids, what things I do that my mother did (the few good things), and how I can avoid being like my mother. Mostly I just feel devastated, and still I'm not sure how to pick myself up and move on. I miss her and I never expected to.

My 5 year old nephew was diagnosed with brain cancer, had a long surgery to remove the tumor and is getting chemo. It had a profound effect on me, for several months I couldn't even think about it much less talk about it without bursting in tears.i am grateful that they were able to remove 99% of the tumor and it appears that radiation took care of the rest. However, it is disturbing to me that he still needs chemo, he is so little and frail. It breaks my heart knowing all the things he has to relearn, and the fear his family carries with them every minute of every day. But all in all I am inspired by Sethie, he is a trooper and for the most part his spirits are high. I can't even imagine facing this ordeal at his age and being so happy so much of the time.

After living in a house for 15 years that was falling apart and that we couldn't afford, we moved into a smaller, new home. For me, it was like a weight had been lifted. All the depression and stress I had been feeling was stripped away. My parents always told me that when they moved into a new home, they never looked back. It wasn't until this move that I understood what that meant.

Oh gosh, I'm not sure anything particularly significant happened to me in the whole of the last 12 months! So here are some things that made me feel all of these things: I'm grateful that Chris and I have been living together for just over a year and that we still brush our teeth together every morning and every night! We still get on and have fun and make each other laugh and compose songs and dance around the kitchen and snuggle, and it's really pretty great. (I guess this counts as something I'm relieved about as well...) I'm also grateful that I've shared in some lovely moments with people - Alex and Sam's wedding, my sister's new baby (another relief - a healthy little boy!) - and played in some great gigs, and I'm inspired to start being more active and involved in the music we play with Sol Samba. I'm kind of resentful about work maybe. I'm still in the same job and I'm still feeling stressed and anxious. But I've applied for several jobs over the past six months and I feel like I'm inching closer and closer to getting the right thing, so I guess I feel inspired about new opportunities. And I've started writing a blog, which at the moment is not for public consumption, but I'm pleased that I've been able to do something that inspires me to write.

I went to A-Camp, an adult wlw summer camp in Wisconsin. I felt at ease around others for the first time. Didn't have to hide anything. Whatever I wanted to do was alright. I made life-long friends and hope to go back.

My friendship circle shifted, and I learned my strength in standing up for what I believe in and standing alone. This experience has brought grief as I mourn who I thought my friend(s) are/were, disappointment as I learn who some of my friend(s) really is/are, and empowerment as I learn to live my self-respect rather than hustle for it from others.

The woman I fell for told me she loved me. It made my heart sing. Then she dumped me via text and I as heartbroken. Then she got back in touch and it made my mind explode. Then she told me she really did love me. Then finally just before Rosh she asked me to be her boyfriend. With an expiration date. January 2. And I accepted. I am more grateful than words to have her in my life. Her smile makes my heart grow every day.

I was promoted at work! It's a mixed bag. I'm not sure yet how I feel about being in management as opposed to doing more clinical work. I am completely astounded at the vote of confidence and the idea that I am good at my job, which is not a situation I have ever been in before making this career change. It's changing my relationship to money and to the amount of time that I work. And it's second shift, which impacts my social life a bit more than I would like. But overall, I think it's a good! And I am so, so grateful to be in this space -- to have useful work to do and to be able, most days, to actually do it.

I met a woman and fell for her pretty much immediately. Not on purpose, I fought it for a while. But from the moment I met her I honestly wanted to spend all of my time with her. She is insanely intelligent, so caring, quirky, and loving. She inspires me to get my act together, to think and try harder. It was a rough road, but it was worth the tough times. I am so grateful I found her. I feel very lucky.

Two Significant Things: 1) This summer, I attended the American Wilderness Leadership School 2017 Educator Workshop located at Granite Creek Ranch in Jackson, Wyoming. I learned about ecology, conservation, fracking, outdoor survival, archery, hunting and firearm safety. I challenged and stretched my beliefs, my physical strength, my mental focus, my math skills and even made a few friends in the process. Oh yeah, and I won 3rd place in the 3D archery competition and the award for Best New Shooter. (...me!) Thank you to the Tampa Bay Chapter of Safari Club International and to the teachers and educators around the country with whom I shared 9 days of high speed learning while off the grid. 2) What I learned from Hurricane Irma: • Beer tastes pretty bad when you're terrified • Bamboo absorbs a buttload of wind energy • BayNews9 weather folks became my comfort while we enacted this real life story of "The Three Little Pigs" • Cuban tree frogs gave the performance of their lives during the height of the storm (wish I had an audio file to share) • Our terra cotta house blocked and protected the Cuban laurel tree when the winds howled from the north • The Cuban laurel tree blocked and protected our claypot house when the winds blew from the south • Generators are louder than Harleys • My husband is a rockstar • 14-year-old Nina inherited Dave's brawn • 12-year-old Nigel still doesn't like to fold laundry, especially during a natural disaster • New appreciation for the word "recharge" • A single piece of ice can give so much pleasure when you are out of power for the fourth day in a row • My neighbor across the street, Sandy Coachran, is the Angel of Fuel • Art Levy makes better hot dogs than Dave Greenberg (crispier skin) • I never felt alone... • My whole state of Florida came together to prepare, protect and problem solve • One bromeliad nestled in the tree I was most worried about blossomed through the stormiest moments of Irma to give me fortitude and hope, and the biggest lesson of all: • Be grateful for Life each and every time - L'chaim! 💁🏻⛈💗

My father died in 1992, and it was at that time that my brothers and I learned a little bit about his time in the Navy during World War II, something neither he nor our mother hardly ever mentioned, and about which my brothers and I never were inclined to ask about. At least, *I* never did. The only memory I have from my childhood about his service was that he worked on a minesweeper and on one occasion helped to save people in shark-infested waters. After his death, we learned more of the story when my mother showed the priest the commendation my dad had received from the Department of the Navy. A ship caught fire and exploded while on its way to dump expired munitions into the waters just outside Boston Harbor. My dad helped to rescue fourteen men from the fiery waters (eleven of whom survived). Flash ahead to 2014, when on the 70th anniversary of the explosion, I searched online to see if there was any mention of it and the subsequent rescue operation. Surprisingly, I found an article about it published in a diving journal, a follow-up to a previous article about the incident. The follow-up piece was essentially written by the daughter of one of my dad's shipmates, who wanted to correct a few details of the first article, which was essentially composed with information from archived Navy records. The article mentioned my dad by name. So, I contacted the journal and was given the contact information of the daughter, and soon e-mailed her. I had hoped to speak with her father. For whatever reason, however, her response didn't come immediately. In fact, not for a couple of years. Finally, however, we exchanged a few e-mails and we were able to set up a time for me to call her father, who is virtually deaf and uses a voice-to-text device to assist with phone calls. We spoke for a little over a half-hour, and he gave praise to my father throughout, suggesting that he had personally rescued the fourteen men. I wish I had prepared some questions for him, but I hadn't known what to expect when I made the call. My brother had suggested a question for him, however. He told me that my dad's brother told him that my dad rejected the notion that he had "volunteered" for the duty for which he was commended, calling it "bullshit." When I asked "Teddy" about this, he said that my dad knew what had to be done and he did it. I guess that's a pretty long-winded preface to the questions posed here, but it seems necessary to me before I can answer the questions in a way that makes sense. My parents didn't share much about their "Lives Before Children." My father was a pretty strict, gruff disciplinarian type when I was a kid, which didn't quite foster much respect toward him at that time. He yelled at us a lot and threatened us a lot (albeit rarely following through with violence). I think this helped to foster my distrust for authority. however. As I grew older, my dad mellowed, as dads usually will, and his kindness for others (which was actually ongoing through my childhood) didn't go without my notice. The conversation I had with his shipmate was a certain small glimpse into my dad's past that I would never have known about had I not been compelled to seek out information. I'm grateful that I had the conversation, but I'm also somewhat angry with myself for not being as curious about my parents' histories (separate and collective) as I am now. There are so many questions that I have wanted to ask for so long, but never did. My brothers and I know so very little about both of my parents' lives that it drives me somewhat crazy. Of course, it doesn't help that my mother was also tight-lipped and terse when the past might have been discussed. Next month, I have a business trip scheduled in Boston. I have made plans to go to New York while I'm out that way to meet "Teddy" and talk a bit more about stuff. I'm inspired to shoot video of our discussion. I hope he's open to having it recorded.

I more often than before can acknowledge the clear thinking, problem resolution skills I bring to work, perhaps less so to personal life. I'm grateful I can see the value of my knowledge, experience, and even sometimes inspired by the intelligence I manifest.

I wish I didn't have my head in this particular experience but it has been clouding my thoughts recently. Late 2016 (I remember because it was a night of Chanukah), I had a passionate conversation with a downstairs neighbor because he had been repeatedly banging on the wall to the stairwell everytime we ascended or descended. My kids were just 4 and not yet 2 years old yet, and so going up and down the stairs was a larger ordeal than it would have been, had I been on my own going up and down. The banging had become so aggressive, and my children were becoming so frightened to go up and down, that I rang the doorbell to ask the person on the other side of the wall to stop. I had a mama bear inside me, but I kept calm inspire of feeing quite angry on the inside. The person on the other side of the wall did not think my request for him to stop banging was reasonable, he felt the noise of us climbing up or down the stairs was unreasonable and he felt completely righteous in his decision to bang on the wall to get us to stop. I thought the experience was a single time thing. He never banged on the wall again, but in the past several months, he has continuously sent anonymous emails to my boss, my husband's boss, and to us directly, harassing us and insulting me personally. I didn't expect for these insults to affect me so deeply. I am digging deep to figure out how to not take the insults personally. He targets my accomplishments, my parenting, and claims that I have no value on my own without my husband's accomplishments. I am realizing that my own insecurities have been sparked quite profoundly by these insults and I'm working on trying to climb out of it and stay firm in my convictions about myself. I'm also struggling with how to combat these emails. There is a part of me that feels intensely angry, like I have these feelings of violence that I am shocked and a little unnerved by. I am wondering how to be a good citizen in the midst of this, how to model neighborly behavior to our community and to our children, and how to take care of myself.

Moving - I uprooted my life, albeit falling apart, in San Francisco, for a job that I knew I didn't want, in a city I didn't want to live in, for a reason that I knew would potentially haunt me. I am all these things; grateful, resentful, inspired, defeated, confused, lonely. It's the worst, and its hard to find the silver lining. I am searching for a job, after I quit the one I moved here for, and I feel like it all means nothing and it meant nothing to go through this transition, because I just want to get through it; not understand it.

My mother passed away in April after a very long illness - Alzheimer's. Relieved is one word that comes to mind, but only relieved that the pain is over for both her and my father. Well, not over, the pain will never truly go away. But at least he can get on with his life now.

My daughter was diagnosed with a panic disorder this month, and I just feel so helpless and scared and sad. Partially in empathy with her, and partially because my smart and once self-confident girl is in a well of darkness.

It has been a year of remembering Mom, who died just 3 days into this year. I have been fundamentally changed ny not speaking with her daily. But I found that her voice is always with me. On 9/11 this year, 10 days before Rosh Hashanah, I colored in her artwork around the yizkor poem "We Remember Them" and felt the culmination of the year's mourning, so I was ready for cutting my hair and shaving. I still miss her, but I now know I carry her inspiration with me -- always.

If I'm going to pick one it has to be the election. It was like a bomb went off in my life. It burst my bubble apart. I was almost catatonic for weeks. We refused to believe it had happened. We thought if we signed enough petitions and implored enough congresspeople, the whole thing would get reversed, erased like a bad dream. We were so naive. I mean, when I read my answers from last year, I was already pretty despondent about the pending election, but I believed Hilary would win. Even though I didn't like her at all, at least she was an actual politician. At least we would be able to limp along, I think that's what I was thinking, and selfishly, I might add. I didn't want to think about politics. I was grossed out by politics and wanted to go back to not thinking about it at all. If Hilary was elected we could all go back to pretending that everybody was doing their jobs and go back to the spice store and the nerdy dress shops and karaoke bars, and plan our next Halloween and a vacation in Bali, take a yoga teacher training, grow old in a privileged and sheltered way feeling really proud and protective of our choices. But then Trump got elected and every day got more outlandish than the one before it. I realized that you can't go around just expecting your freedom to be there and not do anything to protect it. The inevitable slide into authoritarianism was crystal clear to me; familiar and terrifying. It's been 10 months of one unbelievable day of news after another. Endless slime and surprisingly idiotic words issue from his mouth everytime he opens it.. I don't think that anything has affected me so deeply, or so activated the parts of me that were asleep. My bubble erupted. All the petty bullshit faded into the background. My lifelong concern with pleasing others, giving myself to others simply because they wanted some of me, feeling like I couldn't share my truth if it wasn't a nice truth, all that suddenly seemed so unimportant, and I realized that I was really enabling people to not evolve by not telling them what thoughts they were actually inspiring in me. Hiding the results, keeping the truth from them. To have an administration in the White House that is so nakedly evil means all bets are off. Pretending isn't really an option anymore. Everything we thought was sacred has been sacrificed. I used to think I had to strive to make more money and have nicer things, my worth was so tied up in arriving in some way that I could prove by making my life appear untouched by lack. But now it all seems ludicrous. It's an obvious lie. There are so many people with nothing. It's wrong to have too much. Because no matter how much you have you always want more anyway. To have myself shaken awake is the most important thing to have happen. But I'm not really planning very far into the future at this time.

I'll avoid grousing about the Orange Antichrist, because I'm sure he'll negatively dominate nearly every answer on 10Q this year, since he's the enemy of all introspective and compassionate people. Also, he's the enemy of imagination, and I want to celebrate the return of my faculties, which had gone into "manopausal" hibernation for the past 30 months or so. Honestly, tears used to wrench themselves from my eyes with frustration at my sudden inability to string a coherent and intelligent sentence together. So, the fog has lifted and the great world of language and ideas is at my fingertips again. In line with Question 1, I'm grateful, relieved and inspired. Also less than a month ago, my love and I moved into the biggest place I've ever lived. The flooding sunlight on the blond hardwood floors, the in-house library, and labyrinthine 70s-themed basement rooms have jump-started my dream life; racing cars, yearning orphans, magical cats, palm-lined seascapes spill from behind my eyelids.

I left the country for the first time, and I went without my family. I visited Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Italy and I have never been so grateful for an experience in my life. I know it's cheesy, but I truly did learn a lot about myself - I explored Venice for six hours, by myself, in rain and head pounding thunder. I sat by the lake in Lucerne letting my feet dangle over the swans, taking in the view of the alps over the water. Those are memories I will never forget about.

Donald Trump became president of the United States. No one saw this coming. I remember that night as I lay in bed and read the dismay and astonishment of the people that I perceived, I sensed and saw a gloom dark cloud shroud our reality, our universe. Because it wasn't just a man that come to power, it was a whole idea of darkness and hate that had made itself manifest in our world. The next morning, as I drove to work, I remember seeing the most beautiful sunrise and clear sky. The green trees and fresh air. The world is still beautiful, I thought. Hate cannot live in a place like this. Still, that week was one filled with despair and sadness for many. I heard women's voice crack at being wished a good day. "How can it be a good day?" She said. It's been only a few months since he took power. We're still here. Strong, determined, tired, but determined. Truth and beauty lives within us and the light shines from within, not without.

My mom started taking an interest in me after I graduated from college. I resent her for this. She had my entire life to care or be proud of me, and she chose to start as I was leaving home and starting my own life.

Stupid Americans voted Trump in.

I gave birth to our daughter in July. It affected me completely. She was born and it was like meeting a person who somehow was always here even though she had just arrived. It was as if it was always meant to be. I had heard of mothers and met mothers who regretted having children. I have witnessed women who didn't have their maternal instinct kick in. I was relieved that when she was born, it was like my whole world came together and I knew that if there was one good thing I could do in this world, it is being a mother to her. She is my everything.

On Christmas day 2016, one of my best friends of over 25 years was raped and murdered by a stranger. It was the kind of crime you tell yourself doesn't happen in real life, only on shows like Law and Order or in the movies. And yet, it happened. She missed her flight, she was missing and within 24 hours of our frantic searching for her, her body was found and her murderer was apprehended. Isn't it disgusting that there are things to be grateful for in that? I try to imagine if months had gone by without us knowing where she was. There is some solace in that. There is also solace in the fact that he plead guilty to her murder and her family and friends do not have to endure a trial. I have spent much of this year simply trying to accept that this horrendous event took place. At the same time, we are also still dealing with my husband's illness and the trauma that he almost died last year. He is still not fully recovered from that ordeal and truthfully neither am I. Last month, I was demoted at my job -- a job I have been dedicated to and by all accounts performed admirably in for over 14 years. I think the theme for the year is: Getting Kicked When You're Already Down. And yet, and yet....still so much to be grateful for. My husband is alive. I am alive. My MS has not flared up despite stress beyond I ever knew I would be called on to tolerate. I have learned beyond question that I am loved by many. Everything is so very hard. Life is incredibly hard. But I have a roof over my head and we are surviving. Despite everything we are surviving. I just wish we could do more than simply survive.

On September 15, I was affirmed a Jew in my synagogue and welcomed to the Tribe. It was a wonderful, inspiring evening... and I'm relieved it is over!

I looked at myself in the mirror which I hadn't since I had my daughter in 2015 and I realized how unhealthy I was. I am very grateful I did because it motivated me to exercise and eat healthier. Yay to mirrors lol. Unfortunately I accidentally broke the mirror but I'm still going and I can't wait to buy another and see the difference.

In May of this year I graduated with an undergrad business degree from the University of Miami, I traveled to Israel - my first time out of the country, I moved to Brickell and got an apartment, and I started a job at Temple Beth Am. I feel anxious about all the changes I'm going through and worried that I am going to have trouble reaching my full potential as a young professional in the business world. However, I'm also incredibly excited to have been thrown into to many adventures at once.

My PhD Graduation - Finally, I have made it. 9 months before my PhD defense, my anxiety and depression went back. It was one of my difficulties to go through in life. I still feel mixed about the time when I suddenly felt so incompetent and demotivated of what I wanted to achieve in life.

This past April, I traveled to London with my husband, who was there on business. I traveled with a cold that I thought was on the mend, but over the first two days of our trip, I became increasingly more sick. After walking across the street to the St. Thomas/Guys hospital emergency room, I was found to be sicker than I thought and ended up hospitalized with pneumonia. I spent two days as an inpatient receiving excellent care. When I was discharged and cleared for travel I spent one more night in the hotel before flying back to the States where I rested and recuperated for a few more weeks. It affected me in that I was surprised and troubled at how sick I had become and how seriously the doctors at the hospital took my illness. At 65, I still think of myself as strong, healthy, and resilient. Now, I had to accept that I was perhaps more vulnerable due to age, and might not bounce back as quickly as I might have in my youth. I am relieved that I did fully recover and grateful for the care I received. I am grateful that Walter was by my side every step of the way, caring, nurturing and advocating for me. I am grateful for my two beautiful adult children, Ben and Alexandra who spoke to me via Skype, made me feel so much better, even as I might have caused them worry at my being in the hospital.

Choosing to accept the job at Rollins and move to Florida. It gave me the opportunity to realize how important some relationships were in my life and also the opportunity to really think about what is important in life. The actual decision making process made me think critically about what I needed to be happy and how to listen to my gut. I am grateful for this opportunity, and professionally I know it was the right choice to make. It try not to regret the decision when I think about the way it has impacted my personal life (being away from Artie, my parents and friends) and hope that it has created space for love and appreciation in a new way.

This past year I went through Hurricane Irma with my family. It was a very scary experience. Everyone was very stressed and we had to hide in the closet at times because of huge shark-nados in the area. I am scared that another hurricane may come. I am gratful that we are ok.

There were two times in quick succession on the magic island. Both to Scattered Black and Whites and both made me feel grateful and inspired.

I returned to Israel in May. I celebrated my Bat Mitzvah Sheni at the Kotel with Women of the Wall. I led the service and leyned Torah to the best of my ability. It affected me because I was a women chanting and leyning while charedi women tried to stop me by screaming and blowing whistles. I am inspired to keep speaking for WOW and advocate for women in Israel and around the world to be able to pray on their custom at the Kotel. I am not resentful because everyone has their opinion.

This year I finally began paying down my student loans. I am so grateful. Paying the loans off was something I was incapable for so long, I was petrified with fear of what would happen when they came due because I simply did not have the money to make it work. Then this January I began paying them off, 5 months before I was obligated to. It was the best feeling in the world taking the debt and the power into my own hands and being in control of my finances. Instead of just scraping by and feeling relief, I felt great empowerment.

We have placed my mother in a Jewish Kosher Assisted living I am grateful and relieved that there exits these amazing resources , where she can be safe and have a productive social Jewish life

I am engaged to be married (7/9/17)! The person I am marrying and I both survived a pretty significant test of our relationship and I believe that I am with the person I want to be with for the rest of my life. I am the most happiest I have ever been with a person. And it is a healthy happiness in that I am sure about my expectations regarding what happiness I can expect from a relationship and finding someone with the same understanding makes it that much better. I am grateful in so many ways. I am not a young person and to find someone that wants to be in a relationship for the long term is pretty amazing in this day and time. I am grateful for someone who genuinely cares about me and that tries hard to work on having a healthy, loving, and respectful relationship.

I fell in love with my best friend. Well, the truth is I've been keeping my feelings for my best friend in check. I feel closer to him than anyone else in my life. Is it "in love? Or, is it love? I'm both joyous and saddened. Joyous that I'm connecting myself to my heart. I feel awake and alive. Saddened that my friend doesn't share the same fiery feeling I have. I'm working through my feelings. What does he do that makes my heart dance? Can my heart dance that way without him? Can my heart dance for someone else the way it dances for him?

My birthday! My 30th birthday was the most amazing birthday I have ever had. Nate took us to Disneyland and we got to stay in the Paradise Pier hotel. On my actual birthday we had breakfast at the hotel and I got to meet Stitch. I was so excited I thought I would die. Nate special ordered me a birthday cake that night at dinner with a chocolate Stitch on it. It was truly a magical birthday and I don't think anyone will ever be able to top it. Also Toby and I took our road trip to Denver in April. It was so much fun even though it was hellaciously stressful.

This is the first piece of clothing I bought for our baby. I bought it at Whole Foods before our baby existed. It was just such a perfect onesie for my husband, with the hops and the "midwesterner." I gave it to Kevin with my first positive pregnancy test 3 days before my 35th birthday. And the due date... the day before my dad's birthday! The excitement! The fear! After struggling with infertility, being given a 3% of conceiving on our own, we did it. Hooray! Less than a month later, I would learn that there was no baby. Anembryonic pregnancy. After struggling with infertility, I would be having a miscarriage. Grief is a strange thing. I respect Elizabeth Kubler-Ross's stages and their mercurial nature. Grief is equal parts learning to forget and demanding rememberance. It's teaching yourself to be strong and soft, tough and gentle. It's a garbage heap and the hope of rainbows. It takes your breath, your kindness, your energy, your gratitude, your ability to see goodness. It puts a microscope on your inadequacy. Grief takes the worst parts of being human and makes them a rich compost in which future seeds can thrive. It teaches lessons on memory and impermanence and hope and love and meaning. One can only feel deep sorrow if one feels. And what a miracle it is to feel. We get bereavement days off work to spend time mourning and celebrating the lives of loved ones. We don't get bereavement days to grieve the death of a child that was never born. Or the hope of a child who never really existed, even though you thought it did for 9 weeks. We don't really have a public space to talk about our miscarriages, about infertility, about wanting a child and about child loss. As my best friend and sister-in-law pointed out when she shared about her journey with secondary infertility, maybe I'm emboldened to speak out now, semi-publicly, because of the tiny boy growing inside me. Maybe it's because when I've opened up to the few people I have about my journey to become a mother, in general, not always, but usually, I hear about how they struggled too, about their miscarriage, their stillbirth, their baby loss, their child loss, about how they gave up after 3 rounds of IVF, how their baby only exists because of medicine and science, about how they finally conceived naturally, miraculously after years of not. I'm not alone. You're not alone. These are experiences 1 in 4 and 1 in 8 couple's experience. Why don't we talk about it? I had a miscarriage. I have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility. I also have a baby boy growing inside me now. It feels raw and hard to write this. It seems like I should just be grateful and forget. But I still remember clearly the pain that I felt when I read announcements, when I didn't know the stories of other couples, when my tunnel vision told me that I was alone. September 26th would have been my due date. I'm grateful for this day. It's a milestone. It's a day I've wanted to pass. And still, I'm grateful for this journey. I'm grateful for the women and men who have shared their stories with me these past two years, who shared their stories with me before so I knew I could reach out. Thank you for letting me know I'm not alone.

I recently returned from a solo 10 day trip to Seattle and the Olympic National Park. I was incredibly humbled and awed by the trip. it was one of those things that a lines just right. I received an amazing tattoo from an incredible artist, hiked, met up with long-term friends, and enjoyed amazing food at both notable and hole-in-the-wall places. I drove myself around and just generally enjoyed my own company while exploring. It was no small feat for me to take this trip and I am extremely grateful I got the opportunity.

Managed to get through back surgery. Grateful...no pain. Boys are on their way to self-sufficiency.

My husband and I welcomed the birth of our first child: a son, on January 14th. It was quite the year to start 2017! I was determined to have a natural birth, as both my mother and mother-in-law were forced to have cesarian sections with the births of all of their children for unforeseen circumstances. After having two close lose children at the time of birth, I was feeling anxious when my due date passed with no signs of labor. My husband and I went to a double feature movie on Friday the 13th at the Roxie Theatre near our home. We went home after the first film to take a short walk. When we arrived home, I realized that I had been having contractions, which were quickly becoming more intense. I told him I couldn’t go back to the theatre and that we should head to the hospital shortly. We checked in around 11pm, I had contractions all night and was finally dilated enough to start pushing at noon on Saturday. I asked the nurse how long women usually push for. She said some women only have to push three times; others push for 4 hours. I was hoping for the former. But, alas! Baby "No Name" arrived just over four hours later. Ha ha. I was able to have the birth with no pain medications, as I had hoped. The nursing staff was so supportive and helpful! The experience made me realize how truly amazing the human body is! Despite not having eaten since dinner (which I “lost” once I arrived at the hospital due to nausea!), somehow, we find the strength to continue on! They gave me a saline solution and oxygen mask toward then end to give me a “boost,” which helped! But, what an amazing experience. And, when he finally came out, I heard those first cries, and then they immediately put him on my chest…I think this memory will always bring tears to my eyes. How overwhelmed Sean and I both felt with emotion! I felt so relieved, elated, overwhelmed, proud, grateful. And, it has been a journey ever since. I am eternally grateful for this healthy little person in my life. He has brought so much joy.

It's weird, but I am feeling hung up on this question. "Significant experience"... It was all significant. And it was all just normal. Even breaking up with my ex - it seemed big at the time, but in actual fact, not that big a deal. It's just part of the overall fabric. I guess what stands out to me as more life-changing was my decision to break contact with my parents last November. It has not all been smooth sailing since then, and it has been very, VERY difficult to maintain that non-contact, especially since my mother is not one to observe boundaries, and with my brother's wedding making it so that they were hard to avoid. I still feel some guilt over not talking to my father. It's not like I can recall a "thing" that he did to hurt me. But also, he's been problematic in more subtle ways that are easy to forget, and I am sometimes/often reminded of these when I do spend time with him or talk to him. Maybe that "guilt" feeling is part of the good reason to avoid communication, at least just for now. My mom has always been the easy scapegoat, the easy target. It's easy for me to know that when I talk to her. Sometimes within minutes, I feel the urge to literally die. And that's clearly a bad thing. So as hard as it is to not pick up the phone, or to not do something that involves her, or to not just go along with her version of reality (and everyone else's, where parents are great and they definitely want the best for you and it's safe to talk to them), it's been satisfying to at least know that I am making my own best decision about this aspect of my life. I know that my choices are mine. I know they don't depend on "permission" or "approval" from an outside source that has "more" authority than I do. I am my own authority. I get to decide. That's the best feeling that I have gotten from this year. And it applies even when the decision is hard, and/or when it is inconvenient for other people. Maybe especially then. I am learning a lot. I now have the space to explore who I am, and to choose to be that person every day. To choose who and how I want to be, and continue to learn, to decide, to explore, and be a new person all the time, while at the same time, creating more solidity in my life. Even if, maybe at the very time of this writing, a lot of things do not seem solid, financially, I guess I am noticing that at least I am getting a slight bit more of emotional stability. And I would attribute it to not speaking to my parents, counter-intuitive as it sounds. Thank you to myself for making that choice <3

We moved to Nairobi for my husband's work almost 6 months ago. It was definitely time for a change, but it has been much more difficult to settle in than I thought it would be. We moved when my son was 10 months, and I was ready to start working again, and he is now 16 months and I am DEFINITELY ready to find work. I never thought it would be so hard to get a work permit. I have good days when I'm a superstar-networking superstar, and other days when I am just so tired of talking about myself and what I do, and what I want to do (pretty common for a accompanying spouse). I am thankful that we have an amazing nanny to take care of my son, but am also feeling a bit useless, I don't have a job, my toddler doesn't need me, what am I doing here? We talk about back up plans, and leaving, but we have JUST found an amazing apartment and are just starting to settle and find furniture and make a home, how could we just pick up and move again. I know I will find something, but I really don't know when.

Alice & the Kuna Farm - The timely passing of my mother-in-law brings closure and an emptiness to the farm. Whereas I was ready to move there and revitalize the place, I feel like it just isn't the same with them gone. I'm not drawn there the same as I was even a year earlier.

Several things happened -- I turned 60! One great experience is that I gave my testimony at our Women's Retreat. It was amazing! I let the spirit flow through me and created a perfect 10 min talk about commitment, my fear of that, and faith to overcome it. Thru it I saw how God have worked so perfectly in my life to bring me to this point. I'm so grateful and blessed.

My second grandchild was born. A beautiful little boy. There are many things that are meaningful about this event, but one that stands out is the Bris. I had never been to a bris. It was amazing to me to participate in such a personal ceremony that connected all there with our ancestors and the entire Jewish community.

My oldest son was diagnosed with high-functioning Autism. I feel like I'm still reeling from it, even though I was not surprised at the diagnosis. Initially I felt vindicated- after months of having others disregard my concerns I had proof that I was right! Now, most days we just get lost in the day-to-day tasks of living and taking care of two kids, but some days it hits me hard. I wonder what his life, and our life as a family, will look like: which of the plans, hopes, expectations are still possible and which will never happen. Will he make a true friend some day, will we be able to go on family vacations and have him actually enjoy it, will my kids ever play together, will he have his Bar Mitzvah, will he have a romantic partner? I think I'm just really sad, worried, and overwhelmed.

I quit my job. I am relieved because I knew that it was not a good place to be but I am also a bit sad since I miss my students and I miss my easy schedule. I also got a new job and I am inspired by how much I am learning. But also scared because it is taking too much of my time.

A significant experience from this past year was learning of the death of Michael Surnow—one of several people lost this year and someone I can vividly recall standing next to at the 2013 Birmingham Bike race. It put my life and the value of parents and family in perspective, as did my most recent visit of my grandmother as she both enjoyed our visit and used it as an opportunity to share some of what she's actually feeling in a way that she hasn't historically. These and a number of other moments that aren't coming to mind right at the moment (but that I should really given the time of day to think about) have put my life in perspective and therefore they've been the most inspiring and in turn important. Some smaller/subtler/quieter yet no less important moments, such as meeting a friend or future roommate for coffee have also had notable impacts on my year as they planted fond memories throughout the past 12 months.

My dad's death. It's still too early to have any kind of perspective on it. It's been three weeks since the funeral. I can't reconcile the image of him in that last week with the father I've known all my life. He was so weak, and so torn apart by Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. In those last few weeks Mom and I fed him and changed him and cared for him, with the help of many wonderful hospice folks. All of the hospice workers, and our CNA that stayed overnight at the house, were women of color. They are the ones doing the hard work. My dad was so fragile toward the end. When I think about feeding him various pureed dishes that I cooked, my heart just dissolves. He let us care for him with the same kindness and gentleness that he lived each day with. Mom and Dad have always been two sides of a coin. One easy going and gentle, and the other one a true survivor with the strength to do what was needed.

I took a job in a public institution that was a really bad fit for me. I spent a year in fight or flight trauma that I am just starting to come out of now. I am relieved that I found a better fit for myself. I also found a 'good for me' therapist for the first time in my life. I realize just how hard my life has been when I think about the fact that since Feb 2016, within a year and 7 months timespan, I have moved four times and had 3 different jobs. WOW! No wonder I am exhausted, depressed and feeling overwhelmed with beginning again as a full-time classroom teacher in a new school.

We bought a house! This is our second purchase, we own rentals. This is strapping us for cash so we re-financed our first purchase to pay off cc debt. I LOVE owning a beautiful piece of property, next to a creek. I am grateful that this purchase was possible. We did it with nothing! literally came up with $1900 to close! I am looking forward to making this place somewhere my heart loves to be.

My youngest son was contemplating suicide...it was through an odd series of events that I even noticed something was wrong. I was supposed to be going out, well anyway, thankfully I noticed and asked him if he was okay. He told me he was not and managed to convey how desperate he was feeling. To leave out a LOT of detail, he reached out for help and we were able to deal with his personal crisis. I am grateful every day, because I love him and he deserves to live a happy and fulfilled life.

The election. God, the election. I went to bed that night terrified about what might happen, thinking we might not all be here the next day. I started the next day by reading the results, getting out of bed, and heading to the November Project. I had just found out I was pregnant about a month or two earlier. I cried a few times during that workout. It was so bizarre. People were crying and hugging all over the stadium. At the end, taking the picture, someone next to me asked how I was doing and I was choked up and said "not great." But the sunrise was beautiful that morning and it was wonderful to be around like minded people, just sweating it out. Work was weird that day. I felt like someone was sitting on my chest for a few days. I felt like it was irresponsible of me to bring a child into the world. I felt like everything was inside out and upside down. Now I feel like maybe I was incredibly naive to not see that the ignorance and hatred he stirred up in people wasn't there all along, but at the same time I have also witnessed the Women's March, where SO many people were willing to stand up and say that they didn't believe in what he stood for. I also just refuse to believe that people are as hateful as maybe they can seem in a flash. I think most people are trying to do the best that they can. I am overall feeling unnerved about the state of the world, but maybe this is how most people in the world feel at all times throughout history, and I just happened to be born into a very privileged family, in a very privileged country, at a very privileged time, and was lucky enough not to feel it until now. I am a lot less anxious now than I was those first few weeks after the election. Still scared, still reminding myself that this is not normal, but overall okay.

I finished my MBA. Sad that it's over, glad to have the achievement, everyone focuses on the qualification, but it was never about that for me. I loved the learning experience & being back in class.

Though I technically didn't move in this past year, I don't think the full magnitude of the move hit me until this past year. I am relieved the first year is over because I feel like it can only get better from here. I was also promoted this week at work which felt incredible. I realized how far I had come since this point last year. I've grown so much, learned so much, loved so much, cried so much. I'm incredibly grateful. I also very proud of myself. I've worked hard and I know this past year won't be the hardest thing I work through and that I have many challenges ahead of me personally and professionally. But I have a confidence in myself that I do not feel like I have felt in a very long time. I want to remember this confidence. I want to bottle it up and give it to myself when I feel I am worthless.

I gave birth to my daughter. I was extremely grateful as I did not think it would even be possible to get pregnant given my mental condition. I was very relieved that she was born healthy and "normal" and that the entire pregnancy and delivery went so smoothly.The fact that I was able to deliver her healthy was really all that mattered to me at that point.

I finally managed to get divorced. This has been a big topic over the last couple of years, and it has made a huge difference to every aspect to my life. My mental health has improved, I have moved to a 2 bedroom apartment and I think things are getting back on track with Jones.

The election. It was a pretty significant blow to many of us to realize that there were enough disaffected, fearful, hateful people in the country to elect someone as unqualified and dangerous as Donald Trump (although it also appears he had a significant amount of help from Russia, which is a whole other problem). The months since have been full of upset, drama and stress as he and his administration have done their best to destroy our democracy, scare and divide us. I know that there is a silver lining in that people are getting better organized and more involved in politics and social justice issues, but a lot of the time I still just feel scared and sad.

I have avoided answering this question for the last 7 days because the significant experience of 2017 feels so overwhelming and difficult to face. I dated a woman for the first time in 2017 and while the first few months seemed to go better than any of my prior relationships, I quickly found myself overwhelmed and engaged in my anxious attachment struggle. And then things ended in flames with her cheating on me and me screaming at her at 4am. I am overwhelmed by this experience that led to me and Kyle and Sara Jaye no longer speaking with one another. Overall it's been quite overwhelming and heart-wrenching that at 30 years old I'm still capable of such erratic behavior. This has affected me in many ways. I think I've become less close with many friends, relying more on myself, my family, and a new romantic relationship than friendships I've relied on in the past. I've missed sharing my passing of my LICSW exam with one of my once-closest social work friends. There's been a lot of loss and not as much growth as I would have liked for myself.

The only thing that I can think of any significance that happened in the last year was the Eclipse. I had my 20th college reunion as well, which was pretty cool. I'm not sure how I really feel about either of them. They just happened. Maybe that's what is significant about last year, I didn't really make anything happen. It was like I rested. I need to take initiative and make things happen rather than just letting things happen.

I started to understand people in my life that I held a lot of resentment for as wounded beings or simply as humans who have made mistakes instead of as people who hurt me or failed me in some way. My mother and my ex husband are the main ones, and I really had to dig deep to shift my thinking, but I did it and it lifted a lot of pain and heaviness. I enjoy talking to my mother now, it's so great! And I don't feel like I'm on fire when I remember my ex husband anymore. I've also found that when I apply this thinking to people daily, I am so much more at peace.

I bought a house and got a dog! I am so happy to feel more settled in my life. My dog is my joy. I love him so much, and I love having my own house to be in charge of. I thought the task of owning a house would be a big deal, but it's not too bad! You save up money, and make repairs when you need them. I am grateful to my mom for having left me money for a down payment. She knew exactly what she was doing. I love you, mom.

I attempted suicide in January. This has completely changed my life because it has changed the way I think about living my life, and the toll that bipolar disorder takes on me. In some ways, I'm grateful for my attempt because it has shown me the darkest possible place, and I realize that I don't want to go there again. I think I am more determine than before to get better and deal with my problems instead of avoiding them.

This year, I brought Sigma AEPi to Pitt's campus! It is going so well so far!! I honestly love everyone in it. The term "sorority sister" has taken on a whole new meaning! I am so happy that the members are invested in it, and I only see us growing and strengthening in the future! Whenever we have an event or social, I look around and go "wow." Me sending a simple e-mail inquiring about SAEPi has brought me and all these girls together to bond, share values, and make the Jewish community a brighter place. I you dream it, you can believe it! All it takes is one person to make a difference in the world and people's lives. I can't wait to see where this amazing organization goes.

I gave birth to my first child, Maisie. It was an amazing experience! I'm so excited to be a mom to such a wonderful baby! It has inspired me to try to be the best mom I can be. I am so grateful that she is healthy and happy. Being a mom has changed everything. I'm so busy I can barely think straight, but I'm also really happy and have a sense of purpose I didn't have before.

My significant experience this past year was when my husband retired and we moved to a lovely, fun, walkable college town. It was hard work moving and getting settled in, but I am grateful for many reasons. I have met a lot of good people, and feel at home in the community, feel like I fit in. Also, I am fortunate to discover a program for emotional eating, that has plagued me for most of my life. I am inspired and grateful for what I have learned, and been able to put into practice. A third experience is that I realize how much I appreciate and the love the beauty of Judaism; the services and the prayers inspire and awe me. I connect with it on a very deep level.

I consolidated my credit card debt. This year was the first that I could admit to anyone else that I had hid my depression in ordering food and taking cabs to cry alone in the backseat. As Cady Heron described it, I had to suck out the poison. I had to face the (rightful) criticism from my parents, I had to siphon my income even further, and I had to cancel my crutches and rip them apart. When I saw how much money I saved in interest, I felt the first flicker of relief. That spark shined enough light for me to notice how many other skeletons were in the closet, and it has started me on a difficult but hopefully fulfilling path to conquering my bad habits.

The nodule on my lung continued to grow and its proximity to my heart necessitated a lung resection to determine if it was malignant. The surgeon told me the odds were great that I was looking at Stage 4 Colon Cancer or a brand new Lung Cancer. He was wrong. It was a ganuloma and I was immensely relieved. Dodged another bullet and celebrated Thanksgiving in style with Fred and the kids.

I got my brother back after years of not being close. I made an effort to go see him across the country. We are closer now than ever because I just listened to him. I learned about his life. I didn't ask to be validated because I had already done enough self validation.

My son Eli got married. It was a most wonderful event. I am grateful he found a woman to love. I am inspired by his devotion to her. I am relieved -- he was just shy of his 40th birthday when he got married!

Fall 2016 - Befriending a girl who would change my standards for who I thought I should be around, who touched me somehow and laid a foundation for self-love that I didn't know could exist. Grateful, surprised, blessed. November 2016/January 2017 - Donald Trump's election and inauguration. Pitying, frustrated, angry, hopeless at times. May 2017 - The end of a relationship that was wholly unhealthy. The realization that it had impacted me so negatively. Relief, but betrayal. Becoming wiser, but colder. May 2017 - Successfully forming a relationship with a therapist who appears to be genuinely acting in my best interests, and who is so helpful to have in my life. Hope, comfort, and the knowledge that I will always have someone here for me. Summer 2017 - Making a return to the world of theatre, in the chorus of Fiddler on the Roof. Nostalgic, grateful, inspired. Summer 2017 - Moving out of the apartment I shared with my ex-boyfriend, leaving that part of my life in the past, but also forming a new friendship from that experience. Frustration, but belonging and understanding. Bittersweet reflection. August 2017 - The end of an almost decade-long friendship. Disappointment, confusion, a little resentment. Guilt, but acceptance. August 2017 - The beginning of an emotionally healthy and stable romantic relationship with someone I wouldn't have ever expected. Appreciation, excitement, maturity, and love. August 2017 - The start of my internship and thus, my first foray into my field of study. Optimism and confidence.

I started testosterone at the end of February. It's been huge even though at the same time it also feels pretty normalized at this point. I've started trying to get people to use my pronouns and call me by my Hebrew name. I agonized about the decision to physically transition for a long time and when I first got on T had a few panic attacks about whether I was making the right decision. I was. I am. Now I'm on a full dose and made consultation appointments for top surgery and endometrial ablation and tubal ligation. It feels good. Transitioning is really difficult and complicated and emotional, but it feels good. It feels right.

Probably the most significant experience was meeting someone again and allowing myself to let another person in. Last October, I went to my best friends wedding. While there, I saw someone I hadn't seen in 10 years. We talked all night and it felt like I had known him forever. Meeting him again has made me change in so many wonderful, terrifying ways. He has shown me what love is and is supposed to be. He makes me want to be a better person. I feel so grateful and inspired by him. Last year, all of my answers were about him and now it seems like they will be again this year. Meeting my bashert and marrying him was the best thing that has happened to me.

Donald Trump winning the election has probably been the most significant event to happen to me and probably most of the nation, this year. It has had a profound affect in many ways. There are the actual ways, that he is changing laws and named a Supreme Court Justice and may get us into a War. But then there are the other ways, like degrading social discourse, bringing us down so very low...bringing in horrible people to our gov't. Allowing racism to be ok. Degrading the institutions that make our country great and masquerading it as patriotism. It is still hard to believe he won.

Meidän toinen lapsemme Iisa syntyi tammikuussa! On ollut ihana tutustua tähän tyttöön ja opetella elämään kahden lapsen arkea. Salilla käynnistä on myös muodostunut pysyvämpi osa elämää, ainakin viimeisen 1,5 vuoden osalta. Bändin epävarma olemassaolo välillä mietityttää. Ensimmäinen vuosi, kun tullut soitettua näin vähän. Heikki ja Eeva saivat vauvan, Sampo ja Elina saivat myös toisen vauvan. Ensimmäinen vuosi seinäjoella ja omassa kodissa karhuvuoressa. Täällä on ollut kyllä mukava asustella.

My parents celebrated their 62 wedding anniversary. It was significant not only because of the amount of years they've spent together but that they still love and support each other and laugh together. They are absolutely teaching me about compromise and unconditional love, which is something I've always had serious doubts about. Yes, I am inspired. And hopeful for my own prospects.

My Charles got married to his Dani, and I performed the ceremony! It was a wonderful day, happy, intimate, the important to him family there. Robert made a wonderful toast, as did Mike. The house is fuller now. There is another cat (troublesome to the two already calling it home). Showers are coordinated, small things are let go. I think Charles still has to learn budgeting, Dani can help here. I am grateful he's found his partner. I will be doubly-so when they find their house!

My parents both died Lots of mixed emotions

I would say that a significant experience that happened in the past year was moving in with Brandon and really taking the next step in our relationship. I feel that it affected me in a positive way as I felt like it was the next step. It also helps with the logistics and money saving that was kind of a nightmare when I had my own place, but never stayed there. I was definitely nervous and excited at the same time. I hope that this means we are moving in the same direction, and potentially when I read this next year we will be taking the next big step -- getting engaged. I am hopeful -- but also realize he is probably never going to be as clean as I want him to be, which means I have to get over it, haha.

Mike got sick this year. On top of everything else: the breakup last year, his artificial heart valve, his diabetes, his macular degeneration...he began complaining of a chronic cough in February that left him unable to sleep. Then he started coughing blood. Then he coughed up so much blood, he was hospitalized in March and given multiple transfusions. After days of tests, the doctors finally biopsied his lungs and we found out he had stage IV angiosarcoma, a rare cancer of the blood vessels. He had three weeks of inpatient chemotherapy in May, where it seemed pretty touch and go -- he lost 35 lbs, started looking jaundiced because his liver was responding to the chemotherapy, and he was completely overwhelmed, frustrated and pissed off (and no one could blame him for that). His treatments had to be delicately and strategically planned, due to all his other ailments. He was taken off his Warfarin because he was losing so much blood (my last count was 17 transfusions by June), which then put him at increased risk of clotting and stroke. We had to explain to him what was going on, what stage IV meant (he still didn't grasp that he wasn't going to be 'cured' but hopefully, the disease could be managed and his symptoms could abate so he could rest and have improved quality of life). The chemo started working almost immediately, and his cough diminished, he was able to sleep for the first time in weeks, and we all started feeling a bit more hopeful that stage IV didn't necessarily mean "imminent death". We all felt grateful once he started outpatient chemotherapy and he was able to go home, go back to church and hang out at the social club with his buddies again. Scans showed that the nodules in his lungs were getting reduced to half their size because of the chemotherapy. Fast forward to now: Mike's had five months of chemo and it had to be discontinued because he developed neurological side effects (numbness in his hands and feet, and terrible edema in his lower legs--they don't even feel human anymore; his legs feel like metal rods) that his oncologist worried could become permanent if he stayed on the paclitaxil (chemo). So he was supposed to take a six-week break before starting a new type of tx, but he developed a fever this past weekend and was taken to emerg, because any sort of infection could render him septic and he could die pretty quickly. He's started coughing up blood again and we fear that the cancer is worsening, so we're waiting for him to be transferred back to Princess Margaret as an inpatient so he can go back on chemotherapy (a different type than the paclitaxil). Hopefully, it works and buys us some more time. Mike is Dad #2. He's been in my life for 20 years now; and as much as he is the most unfiltered, inappropriate, dirty old man who jokes and teases incessantly, he's also generous, kind-hearted, thoughtful, self-effacing, and simply "what you see is what you get" in his presentation. I am grateful to live and work so close to hospital row because it's allowed me to be with him every day during his inpatient stays, with with him at every chemo appointment, chat with him and tell him about my life (which usually ends up with him giving me typical chauvenistic advice about my lackluster dating life with a book about "healing my inner child" and a bag of chips and a box of cheap chocolates (see? generous). We've spoken about his breakup from Mom, his fears around being sick and dying and out of control, and we joke about EVERYTHING. When we first got the awful news of his diagnosis, Michele had to leave the room to cry and talk with his oncologist, Dr. Bradbury (whom he calls Dr. Blueberry, Dr. Blackberry, etc.). I sat with him on the bed and said, "Well that's shitty, I'm sorry." He looked wistfully out the hospital window and said, "I should just walk out into traffic." I smiled at him and said, "Yeah, but knowing your luck, you'd survive and wind up in traction on top of all this other stuff, so let's just stick with the list of problems you have and not add anymore, ok?" I hate that he's had such a rough year, only to be topped off with a terrible, terminal diagnosis and treatments involving more suffering. I hate all of that, but it's also meant that he's spent more time in the city with me and we've gotten the opportunity to see each other on a daily basis. It's a gift, this time with him, and I'm extremely grateful for it. Hoping selfishly that he'll push through a bit further so we can have more time with him, but if it's not meant to be, then I can only pray that his remaining time is comfortable, pain-free, and has SOME quality to it, for him.

In the past year I became engaged to Rachel. I'm excited but a little scared at the same time. I love her and she loves me, maybe more than anyone in a long time. It makes me wonder if I deserve such love.

I've been going through a divorce - and it hasn't even started yet. It affected me deeply, and I am still dealing with the repercussions, deep-set emotions, guilt, sadness and anger on a near-daily basis. Sometimes I'll be thinking about something completely ordinary, unrelated, and then my chest will tighten like a vice. Memory upon memory, word upon word comes flashing back to me like it happened just yesterday. I suppose this is the grieving process. Everyone does it differently. Mine feels a little like dying, but mostly like rebuilding, and I hope that part continues.

My partner's elderly father had a stroke while he was in the hospital for an unrelated infection. I don't know if he's every going to recover enough to return home. My partner isn't even thirty yet, but his dad is in his nineties; his mom is in her sixties or seventies. This has made me think a lot about how when I'm old and not able to take care of myself I don't want the full burden of that to be on my partner. This relates to my already-present desire to convert to Judaism, because one of the many things being part of a Jewish community would mean is I'd have people I can support and who will support me when it's my turn to need care. I think overall it's left me feeling worried and powerless. I can't do anything to make my partner's dad better. I can't do anything to push back against time. Even if my father in law comes through this okay somehow, he's still a very old man who would be statistically unlikely to live another decade. My partner's going to face the loss of his only really dearly loved blood relative before he's forty, maybe before he's thirty, and there's nothing I can do.

The most emotionally challenging experience for me: Going on a trip to record audio about my father and to find out more about what kind of person he actually was. I went to see his ex-wife and daughter to talk to them about him - they're father and ex-husband - and even though I had talked about him with them before it felt more intense and focused. Hence the feelings were more condensed somehow. On the same trip I also saw a friend of my father's who offered another perspective on him. Even though it was interesting for me to listen to three different people and their experiences with him, it was not surprising at all but it all fit together. I had also interviewed my mother about my father a while ago and it all made sense. They were all very clearly talking about one person with specific characteristics that were showing clearly at the age of 20 and 30 and 40 and 50. Weirdly I had to discover that sometimes there's not more to discover about someone at some point and they're not a bottomless well of mystery but just one person with a pattern they keep repeating throughout their life. Which is what my father did and it made me wonder whether most people do that. Most probably don't change drastically at some point in their life. So if I would have to tell this story right now with the audio I collected I'd say what's most interesting and striking about it is not him, the charming and destructive person at the center of it, but how the people he had close ties to reacted to and dealt with him in the long run. They all had different kinds of scars and coping mechanisms. It's a story about how great one person's influence can be even if they aren't around for very long - my father wasn't in his respective wives' or daughters' or even friends' lives for very long, but he left a dent that affected their future relationships and way of looking at life drastically.

I got clean from drugs 6 months ago and I'm so relieved. I made a mess of my life last year and I'm lucky to be alive.

I dyed my hair red. That may seem silly and minuscule, but to me so much of my identity had been to linked to my blonde hair for so long that it felt like a revolution. And yes. I do find that people even treat me differently. Our culture is so obsessed with stereotypes that go with particular appearances we've all internalized these ideas without even realizing it.

living through my only daughter hating the first 6 weeks of college, and then just disliking it. went to spend Yom Kippur with her and had to go to the Dean of Freshman to be more proactive than Brown or the daughter were being. one because they don't seem in touch with the shy, abstemious population (and don't seem to care), and the other because she's just fresh out of a sheltered life. several feelings mixed in: started with resentful (towards Brown), pitiful (towards daughter), grateful it all went away, happy that she actually grew up with the experience.

This past month we were expecting a horrible hurricane, Irma. Although it caused a lot of destruction in other areas I got very lucky and the hurricane happened to move west. Our prayers were answered and we were all safe!

Jesus entered my heart! The moment I started going to Hillsong, Easter Sunday, my heart started softening and a few months later, Sunday 3rd of September, Jesus completely entered my heart and I got safed. I am grateful that I found my way to Jesus and can see the change in me and my life already. I'm excited to see what God has planed for me but I know it's going to be BIG! Thank you Jesus.

I was diagnosed with a brain tumor in August. It was the most terrifying few weeks of my life. Well, let's go back. The first diagnosis was early onset Alzheimer's (I'm 37 got God's sake) which was a much more terrifying diagnosis. I spent weeks writing letters to my kids for when they're older, drawing them pictures for now because they can't read yet, making videos of myself telling them I loved them, and crying A LOT (so many tissues). When it came back as a brain tumor, I was relieved because even if I die, at least it will be quick-ish, and they'd get my life insurance. And when it came back as benign, I felt a huge wave of gratitude towards life, my family, grass, blue skies, the magic of crickets, everything. While I would never voluntarily go through this experience again, it has made me appreciate life in a way that I am grateful for.

Last year, I answered this question that I had asked my girlfriend to marry me. This year, I moved to her country and we tied the knot. I'm amazed, grateful, happy... we are together, and we've already supported each other in rough moments, and that is an experience that I can only say that I treasure, and intend to continue to appreciate with each passing day.

I had my first surgery related to my transition from female to male. I have been waiting a long time to start the surgical journey having been taking testosterone for 5 years. On the 7th September 2017 I had a total hysterectomy. I've always wanted children, and this was weighing on my mind, but my dysphoria would never allow me to become pregnant. Carrying a child is a hallmark of womanhood and it just did not feel right for me. I still want children, but perhaps foster children when I am older. It depends on how my disability affects me. If it stays at a similar level to what it is now or if it continues declining. I am so happy that I have finally started my surgical journey into manhood. My nan informed me that 7th September is her dad's birthday. She said he would be very proud of me and I'm grateful that I had it on his birthday, hopefully with him looking down on me and supporting me. The only downside I've had so far is my bladder went into retention when I had the catheter first removed so I had to have another one put in. I'm hopeful that when it is taken out again on 3rd October that my bladder will behave!

My two-year-old nephew needed surgery in order to pull down one of his testicles. I've never been more worried about someone else's wellbeing in my life. Fortunately, all went well. He had to have his movements limited in the following weeks and it got him down, as he is a very lively child. Still, his recovery was largely uneventful (thanks to his ever watchful and loving parents) and he's back to his old self, filling the house with laughter.

I met someone who completely accepts and loves me for who I am and is neither intimidated by me nor wants to change me. I feel relieved, grateful, joyful and humbled.

I was on the verge of being sacked from my job, but was given a reprieve, a second chance. I am relieved, of course, but also confused.

UGH. It's been 10 months now, and I still can't fully wrap my mind around the fact that Donald Fucking Trump is president of the United States (#notmypresident). I am grateful that my husband and I don't have offspring to worry about, I resent every idiot who cast a vote for this OBVIOUS nutjob, and I don't envision feeling any relief until he has been cast out like the cancer he is.

The election of Trump was THE experience. It has changed my life. I am not relieved, not grateful and but I am inspired to action. But there was a moment...on election night - when I got a text from my mother, "Come tonight, I want to see a lady president elected with you." Alas, the night was night what we expected, but together we have been able to commiserate and strategize of how to resist.

My mother died. Reorganized all my priorities, what was important to me over all, etc. pushed me to take more authorial responsibility...to become, or accept, this matriarch thing. Also, related, turned 70 this week, and got willing to stand up for myself , kind of, in terms of how I spend my time. Anyhow, working on personal space, agency, no guilt.

As my first year in a new city, many significant experiences have come alongside the move. As I think through many of these experiences, I have felt grateful every time that I have gone through a difficult experience here that I was able to handle effectively and pretty independently. Times where I know I can call my supports, but ultimately, I am capable of navigating independently comes with growing pains, but ultimately leaves me grateful.

Tony almost killed himself and I had to take him to the emergency room 'cause his friend was too fucked up to do anything about it. I'm proud that I took him but I was reluctant because he had caused this himself and he's much older than me. I thought he would be a bit more put-together than he was. Im really glad he didn't die but I'm also really disappointed that he keeps perpetuating this behavior. He's been depressed for a while I guess but he deals with it in a really unhealthy way and, as someone who understands what depression is like, it makes me even more bummed that he can't snap out of it. I know it's easier said than done but it really isn't hard. We all know what we need to be happy, I guess some people just think its too hard. Anyway, I'm glad I could help and that he's still around. I just hope he's doing better.

My dear friend Abi died. We knew each other for exactly one year. He died on the same day we met. I feel so grateful to have know such a beautiful soul. He welcomed me like family. Both being from London and moving our lives to LA he was like the older brother I never had. I'm inspired to pursue my dreams even harder because of Abi. He always had a smile on his face and was the most positive person I knew in such a short space of time. I'm not hurt or upset anymore as every now and again he'll throw us a sign to let us know he's ok, we're ok and that everything always works out exactly as it is meant to.

I interned for Senator Sherrod Brown for seven weeks in his Washington D.C. office. This was one of the most monumental experiences I have ever had the opportunity to go through. It completely changed my mindset in what I want to do with my life. My goals now consist of working in D.C. again, but also being a United States Senator. I am so grateful for this experience, and I will cherish it forever.

I have been to Saint James Royal Palace. I felt special that evening.

My relationship ended. But the significance came after, when I found myself. I found what I enjoyed to do - being outdoors, hiking, exploring new places, listening to good music, relaxing, advocacy work, making a difference. I am grateful because I can be friends with him while also acknowledging that I am a better person being with myself.

i was in a 3-year relationship and along the way, i met someone from the past. However, things got worst and i decided to continue the 3-year relationship instead. What happened after that was truly a nightmare as that guy from the past kept haunting and stalking me all over which gave me the creeps. It was something that was not to be proud of, but instead, i take it as a lesson to always be faithful with this current guy as he has given me the best in different ways that i can ever imagine. It was resentful for me to even think about moving on with someone else even knowing how much i love that current man.

So much has happened this past year. Last year, I quit my job at Brandeis and committed to writing my book. It was a huge leap of fait that has reaped so many rewards. Jesse went to college. Sam started high school. Dave and I both turned 50. David Baker was diagnosed with brain cancer. Spouse lost her dad. I went on two writing retreats which gave me the focus, community and drive to finally write my book. Jesse was diagnosed with UC, underwent 3 surgeries, and is currently struggling to recover so that she can stay here for her first quarter of sophomore year. I am deeply grateful in so many ways. I am grateful, first and foremost, for the resources and ability to get Jesse the best medical care possible. For being able to, last year, be there for her at every turn, and, this year, to devote myself to helping her through this very hard year. For being able to stay here in Evanston for two weeks and help give her the best possible chance for staying at school. I am grateful for having the freedom to spend so much time with Jesse during this last year, mixing the hardships with so much joy, binge-watching Transparent and Friday Night Lights, lying in bed for hours with the Barronness of Toosletown over the summer, our new joyous puppy, getting to just be together for so much unstructured time. I am relieved for the freedom and resources we have. Relieved her condition had answer and a cure. This, coupled with David Baker's illness, has clarified on a whole new level, what matters to me. My ego and anxiety to "be something" has been drained and diffused. What I care about more and more is the purity of life -- spending time with the people I love and being there for them fully. In a very deep sense, these challenges have been the catalyst for peace in my life. They have put to rest my comparative mind and allowed me to do the thing I've never been able to do before: enjoy all the blessings of my life.

I was fired. At first, I felt terrible, like I had yet again let my family down and that I was no good. But the more distance I got from the experience, the more I realized I was miserable at that job. Our finances are suffering, but I am infinitely happier realizing that I need to do work that I am proud of, otherwise I feel inept.

Over the course of the past month or so, everything in my life has gone wrong. I met a man I thought was The One™️ and things were wonderful for two months and then he called it off because he wasn't ready to commit. My younger brother became violently psychotic and has attacked me twice. I am having issues at work and receiving no support from admin. I am tired and sad all the time and honestly I'm not sure what the point is.

The most significant thing that happened this year will have to be my job change. I am extremely grateful for this second chance to advance my career. I got multiple boosts during this move when I got this job through a headhunter and was approached by big tech companies like Amazon and Google at the same time. The Universe had practically sent me on this move with a magical carpet and the experience had been simply magical.

I somewhat purposefully became homeless and lived in my car for a month. It was a valuable learning experience and realigned my priorities rather quickly. If I didn't have a job I had to physically be at I would have wanted to keep going for a while, and likely will again in a future.

I'm afraid the failed election of our first female president and the election of a despicable idiot as president has rocked my world - and the whole world - this past year. I knew, the day after the election, that Trump being elected would take a grave emotional toll on the country - and on our family - and I'm afraid that has been the case. The only solace I can take is that people are engaging more thoughtfully and more deeply in understanding white privilege and the value of activism than I've ever witnessed in my lifetime.

This year, I made the decision to end my marriage. I'm still processing how it has affected me and there is still so much to learn but the feeling I have is one of peace and acceptance. It has changed me in so many more ways that I could count. Its taught me to be accountable to myself first and foremost and its inspired me to live my life for me - no one else. I'm grateful to God for showing me the signs which because a catalyst for change (the change I was craving and desperately needed). I'm grateful to the people that were put in my path before and during this time to help me grow and become a person that i'm proud of. I'm relieved to finally be stepping into my power and become someone consistent in every interaction (or at least working on it). For now, i'm not resentful. This may change as i'm only just begining the healing journey, but i'm filled with love, light and gratitude for what we had, who we are and who i've become over the last 8 years. I'm also incredibly inspired. I'm inspired to live my best life (thanks C1). I'm inspired to hold myself accountable and show up for myself. I'm inspired to be the best version of myself that I can be.

Opened up a social enterprise clothing boutique in SF union sq8are; I am grateful . Overwhelmed. Inspired and somewhat resentful of my lack of time

One of the most significant moments this year was the passing of Noah Arnold. I had only “flirted with death” before that moment, where the only time I had learned that someone died was with someone I barely had a relationship with, like a friends parent. But this was real, this was someone that I had truly known. I remember checking my phone after landing in Florida, in which I was visiting for the weekend, and all of a sudden my group chat from EIE blowing up. “Did you hear about Noah” “Check what Rabbi Sykes posted”. I quickly went onto my facebook and clicked on the notification. I read over the words in disbelief, as words like suicide and rest in peace popped out. My grandpa and brother were engaged in conversation and quickly got mad at me for not participating. I ran into the store trying to explain to my mom what happened, with tears in my eyes. Noah was one of the smartest people I have ever met, and it seemed unfair that nobody could witness his genius again. I was never the closest friend of his, but I really admired him from afar. He knew exactly how to make a group laugh, by shouting “Camel” or “Avodah Zara” and yet could completely engage in conversations about Torah and life that could blow your mind. He was only a tiny speck of my life, and I barely engaged with him after our trip to Israel, but once he was gone, damn, I realized his huge impact on my life. It bothered me how I couldn't see this when he was alive, and even more bothered me that I could never know my impact. His death shook my world up for a while, as I tried to figure the meaning of everything. I was scared every person in my life was going to be gone, and I would be alone. Little did I know this fear lead me to be alone. I am overall more aware of this situation but wish it never happened. I still get really sad from time to time when thinking about Noah, and hope some of the things I learned from him can keep him alive in some ways.

The election, of course. How could this not be the most significant thing? Everything about it is supremely awful.

I gave birth to David. My first son. It was amazing, and i'm so thankful and surprised and happy that he's a boy. He was a joy to deliver, though there was a scary moment or two. My sister in law helped me through it, along with my husband. Shortly after that she moved away, and that was super hard. I'm so resentful of her decision to move. So angry that she took my neices and nephew away from me and away from David.

So many! I applied and got accepted into Harvard. It's a completely new world, and divinity school or at least this one has a way of having you think about and sit with complexity.

This year, at the depth of my stress and sadness (and we are all stressed and sad under the current shadow of political catastrophe), with financial issues pressing down upon my spirit and painful shingles erupting across my skin, I launched a fundraising campaign for my not for profit on Facebook. My circle of friends and acquaintances and friends of acquaintances lifted my spirits and reaffirmed the importance of my work. In two weeks, they had donated enough to keep the doors open, and restored hope to many of us.

One significant experience that has happened in my past year was my summer job at Derby Academy. Because of my job, I was able to learn a few things about how life can kinda suck, but that it’s okay. My ‘summer’ really started off in April, when I received a job rejection letter from the camp that I had been going to every summer for the past six years. Ok. Recognizing that I need not only a source of income, but also something to do all summer, I apply for a job at Derby Summer Arts. I think to myself: both places are summer camps, and I’m doing this job with a group of really close friends. This can’t be that bad, it might even be great. I am woefully incorrect in this assumption. During the first week I not only come to the realization that I possess the ability to detest a seven year old with every fibre of my being, but also that I am only going to be paid $3.58 an hour for my troubles. This camp was not in any way similar to the one that I grew up going to, and because of this I found that I really hated my job. Everyone was very nice to me, and I made some great friendships with my fellow counselors, but I still found myself resenting waking up in the morning because of the day to come. As for how this experience has effected me, I would say that I am relieved it is over, and that I resent the fact that I ever had the misfortune to be any part of it.

1. Hurricane Harvey - affected me in ways I couldn't have imagined. One evening, I volunteered at a shelter and somehow the images and experience at that shelter became indelible and attracted me back there like a magnet. I became grateful for even the smallest things in my own life, while feeling a combination of sadness for those so devastated and inspired by those who gave so much of themselves. The faith that people had - especially those who lost so much - was a constant source of mystery and inspiration to me. The selfless way people from around the country gave of their time, energy and means was really a remarkable statement about the positivity of humanity.

Death of both parents. It affected me profoundly – great loss – reckoning – cooperating with and deepening my relationship with other family members

Injuring my knee, tearing my meniscus, and being out of work for 6 weeks. I was able to share the entire summer with both my girls. And that part was wonderful. The fact that only 2 people from my job acknowledged my absence was very painful

The disaster that was ECT at Sibley Hospital happened to me. It totally changed my outlook on my mental health treatment. It made me see that while I have always been compliant I haven't all done ALL that I could do to ensure my good mental health. I have begun to do more to put me in the driver's seat. It is sort of empowering to know that perhaps the medical professionals DO NOT have all the answers. That some of the answers lie within ME.

Getting my dream job. It made me realize my goals are realistic when everyone told me they weren't. I am so grateful. I am so inspired. I am so relieved it didn't work out because it was a very controlled environment that I didn't fit into. I now have much more freedom, money, and peace of mind. I learned I can do it on my own but I am still so grateful I had this experience because I learned a lot, met some really incredible people, and had the time of my life even if at times it was painful.

Holiday in Europe, spending time with my sister, dad and grandson. Recharged my batteries, enjoyed myself without being a carer.

My pilgrimage to Israel. It totally broke down all the barriers to my soul--shattered the layers of veneer that had built up over the years--I cried every day for 7 days, learned the healing power of sharing with others, realized the poisonous habits I had of too much CNN and not enough chanting. Used that trip as an elimination diet of sorts and very carefully and consciously added back in the people and activities that enliven me, not minimize me. I’m grateful and inspired.

My mamma having a heart attack earlier this year was a huge eye opening experience for me. And the fact that she is so far away from me. It is hard for me to take care of her from several states away. In one respect I was very resentful that my father or my brother would not step up to do anything. On another hand, I am grateful, that I had the means to drop everything & fly up to see her & take care of her. There is nothing more important in my life than my family. I would do anything for my mom or my family. I believe that this appreciation comes more as you age and you do not see is as much when you are younger.

I have separated from my husband and have my son about 70% of the time. It has been very difficult but I know it's the right decision. I miss my family unit and I miss holidays together. As I get further away from the relationship I realize that this should have happened many years ago so I am grateful for the clarity even though I wish it could have worked out.

I was promoted at work. I like the job itself but it's also come with a bunch of baggage that I can't stand. It's causing me to have to really reflect on myself, and who I'm going to be if I continue to do this work at this workplace. I'm not happy.

I changed jobs this year. I was conducting a semi-serious job search hoping to get something more creative and to remove myself from a stressful job where I didn't feel competent. I broadened my search after being notified that our company was facing layoffs and found something that seemed promising, when I received word that I was being laid off with 4 other people. Two days after being laid off I was hired as the assistant to the executive director at an historical and awe inspiring synagogue. I am extremely grateful and also surprised that I landed there. I never imagined that I would work at a synagogue and become so immersed in my religion.

I left my long time job for a new one out of my comfort zone. It allowed me to relieve myself of debt and live more comfortably. I'm very grateful for my job change

I finally got pregnant...with twins. I have felt incredibly grateful, especially after thinking that we wouldn't be able to have biological children without fertility assitance, and also completely overwhelmed with the responsibility of bringing not one but two people into the world.

renewed health through strict allergy testing/diet

Donald Trump was inaugurated president. It has caused me to lose faith in the American electorate and question the value of democracy. It also highlights how technology has adversely affected the ways people communicate and interact. While technology has brought many improvements in society, this is one place it has severely degraded it. I don't know if we can recover from this slide.

I got engaged! By this time next year I will be newly married. I'm a little worried that I am defining myself with relationships, since I feel like this question is most often answered by my relations to other people, but relationships are a big deal with me. I kind of never thought that I'd get to this point. I'm happy and afraid and excited and all the feelings. This is going to be my life! It does feel right. It feels comfortable. I'm excited, because he's such a great catch, but I'm scared that I'm not going to be enough, that this is all going to fall apart, that I'm not stable enough. But when will I ever be? I'm the most stable I've ever been, and it's partially because of him. I am so hopeful, hopeful that we can be there for each other for the rest of the foreseeable future, that we might really have something true and lasting. I want it. I want it to be that. I will do my best to make it be that.

My father passed away, my youngest daughter eloped, my closest brother moved out of state, my oldest daughter included me in her wedding plans and got married . Devasted, hurt, grateful. Hard year for me. CHANGE and life events. Still trying to keep my head above water.

I earned a promotion at work, the same year our children turned 2. It was a lot of work and balance, and leaning into my village. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to do work I care about and provide a model for them.

I graduated college last year. That seems pretty significant. I was definitely proud, but I was terrified. I wasn't (and still am not) ready for the real world. I'm bouncing internship to internship in the meantime, trying to get more experience so that next summer, I feel prepared to make a decision as to where I want to go to grad school. But I have no idea how to make a decision that will actually define the rest of my life. That idea is so daunting. And I know that I can always go back to school or change careers or what have you, but what I decide next year will be a significant decision nonetheless, and I'm the most indecisive person I know.

I married off my first child, my only daughter, Merav. It was a wedding I would have created myself were I getting married today. It was a huge community affair, so much love and support. I feel so grateful that she found her partner and that his family is wonderful and lives nearby and have welcomed us into their family. I felt a huge sense of relief when it was over, but also let down. Part of the joy was the fact that 17 people from my family came from the U.S. to celebrate with us. We've never had that many at any of our simchas in the 22 years we'd been in Israel.

We moved back to the beach! Omgosh! What a year it has been! I am sooooo relieved and content. This is our home. I'm forever grateful for this adventure known as my life. To God be the glory, for the things He has done!

One of the biggest experiences of the past year were moving in with and preparing to live with Jeff. We have been long distance the past 2 years, and 3 of our total 6 years. I knew it would be a big change to go from seeing each other a couple of times a month to every single day and sharing all of our space. Transitioning from living with Casey was a nightmare. Her emotional instability made me extremely anxious and I hated being around her by the end because she was so passive aggressive and rude. Towards the end of our roommate relationship I also adopted Bandit, our dog, from the pound, which added a lot of friction to our relationship. I don't regret it at all though because I love him so much and he brings Jeff and me so much happiness. Then I moved in with my parents for 2 months. I think that was really great for us, but also really challenging because I had even more stress there. I had less space and felt like I was infringing a lot. It was a relief to finally finish the school year and move Bandit and me to OKC. I left for Israel about 10 days after moving in together though, so that really just felt like a long visit. After I got back from my trip this summer and after Grace's wedding, I finally began to adjust to life in OKC. At first I was very lonely. I had almost nothing to do and I didn't know anyone but Jeff, who was very busy. Grace works in OKC a couple of times week, which has been wonderful because I get to see her so often. But it took starting grad school to feel more comfortable here. Jeff and I easily divided chores and have been very understanding about accommodating each other in our home. I think because we waited so long we're just so happy to be together that we don't get upset as easily. Overall it is wonderful. I absolutely love seeing him every day. I love sharing our things and blending our lives. Living together has been everything I had hoped for.

My husband was critically ill. I found it overwhelming and scary. I'm grateful he survived and somewhat worried about the future.

I’ve had my heart broken more than once, all in pretty awful manners. I was, and still am, devestated. I was blindsided and left without any explanation or closure. I was left with grief and an unending list of questions I would never get the answers to. These experiences, I would never with on anyone. The absolute pain and confusion and abandonment is probably the worst I have ever experienced. I have learned that I am strong, beautiful, and worthy of love. My heart breaks that my partner didn’t see those values in themselves and decided to flee instead of face the scary unknowns of vulnerability. I think of them daily, sending them love, wishing that one day I’ll find my closure.

It's hard to start this thing without jumping straight to the election. It was the most significant experience in my country and my personal life. It was traumatic. It is still traumatic. I want to be doing as much as possible to resist, and to help those more vulnerable than me, but it feels overwhelming. I am angry. I am afraid. Everything that's happened since last November has been tainted by this ongoing nightmare.

My year in France and Mexico - it's made me more comfortable in myself, more confident. I know what I like and what makes me happy. I have learnt to not put my efforts somewhere it won't be worth it. Enjoy nature. Don't do things you don't like. Take time. No pasa nada. Proud for having been so far away from home, family and friends and starting a new life for myself - it was surprisingly easy thanks to the people around me. Proud for having learnt a language. Sad it's over, more patience thanks to small, mad French kids. Seen beautiful things, met beautiful people. Very grateful to have had the experience. Inspired to travel more, return to Mexico.

The election. It was completely life-changing and devastating. To this day, almost a year later, I still cry when I think about it. (For example, reading HRC's dedication in "What Happened."

Relieved. Became a licensed architect. Between schooling and licensing exams, took 15 years to achieve the honor.

i got to go to israel which was the most incredible experience of my entire life. i got to travel withot my parents and be on my own in another country for a month.

Moving to Florida. So grateful. My life has taken such a wonderful direction--I am happier in general.

Lymphoma in remission. Relieved. Diagnosed with Parkinson's. I feel challenged.

I was published in an anthology, which I downplay of course, but it was really exciting to have something that I wasn't entirely in control of work out. I spent a lot of time lamenting my lack of drive coming panning out, and this was an instance of seeing an opportunity, taking a chance, and succeeding.

I've been going through a tough time at work recently. I just got a stable job in my desired field, but it isn't working out-- I essentially got "soft fired" in July, which has been a harrowing and humbling ongoing experience. But, I have reacted to it in a completely different way than I would have in the past. I'm trying to move forward any way that I can-- I've been writing cover letters and applications almost every day for three months (yes-- I know-- it's a long time and that in itself is disappointing, but I frankly can't spare the energy to acknowledge how disappointing it is). I just have to keep moving forward. I guess you could call me more "motivated."

I met Sharon. She has been an incredible addition to my life! This is the relationship I was looking for, and I'm incredibly happy and grateful!

As much as I don't want to give this more energy, there's one event that has had the most significant impact on all else: Trump's election. I've been lucky not to personally be threatened by these results, but I am deeply concerned about the health of our democracy. It is more than just concern about policy. It is concern about trust, about belief in facts and knowledge formation. It is concern about divisiveness and racial resentment. As I return to the classroom, I am finding myself unmoored. I am unsure of how to present intellectual pursuits, and uncertain about how much help I can offer my students.

i loved doing focus groups and listening to people.

I had a major job change in the last year and it has made me feel grateful, proud, challenged, inadequate, and nervous. I am grateful because I have the opportunity to work in an organization that I believe in and proud because everyday I am amazed by the work we do in our community. I feel challenged and inadequate because I don't always feel like that I have what I need to succeed - sometimes out of my own fears, but also because those that came before me were not always the best at documentation and planning. Nervous because I want so badly to do well, but worried that I am not enough.

Ellie's graduation. Appreciation. Wow. Gratitude. Amazement. Awe that at this time in life

Passing my kin exam and starting a full time job in my line of work! Feeling grateful and relieved. Every day I connect to the present moment that this life is a blessing and that it's a privelige to do the work that I do. I wear comfy clothes, listen to music, connect with people all day long, get to move, and create something that will help my clients improve their quality of life! Doesn't get much better than that

My dad died this year. The day before my birthday. I thought I would feel relieved that he is free and unencumbered by the body that penned in his fullness. He is so much more than what his body could do. The fact of his death draws a line in the sand to some of my unclosed, untied ends. Things I wanted but couldn't have are final now. There is no more. There is no fantasy that I can have them because he is living. He did not dance with me at my wedding. He can not tell me about himself growing up. He cannot tell me anything himself now. I get to keep the memories I have, hold onto the small pieces I do get to keep and protect them. And the rest of it I have to let go.

This year I went to Israel for the first. For ten days I fell in love that as a minority in the states to be a majority. It felt like I belong. To a person who has gone through bullying i felt a feeling I didn't feel before and that made me feel thankful for the state of Israel.

My baby Sadie Aviva was stillborn on 4/26/17. It was by far the saddest day of my life, and life since then has been very challenging. My naivete about pregnancy is shot. I still can't believe this happened. Sadie was in perfect health, and a fluke cord accident changed all that. The words "There is no heartbeat" will forever ring in my ears. I'm trying to see the bright side... having the opportunity to explain death to Eliana and have her get comfortable with the idea is a blessing. Having me be more compassionate with the losses that others have faced in their life is invaluable. And, this is just another opportunity for me to pick myself back up and keep moving on with life. (not move on from the grief, but moving in my life)

I started therapy...again. In a new country, with a new psychologist. It was a huge step for me in working through my issues. I'm grateful because every day I find another piece of my lost self.

In the past year, my husband and I celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary- I turned 70 years old, I retired from work, we traveled to the British Isles (a place we had never visited before, except for England) and we helped my son empty out his house and had into Kurds with two of his wonderful sons! However, the most significant experience that happened to me in the past year was the birth of my twin grandsons on July 11th (7/11 BTW), 2017! After many unhappy things, some of which caused me to feel hopeless, this incredible miracle helped restore my sense of joy! I always feel that bad things are either natural events or human made, however, this one special occasion made me feel like God sent his angels to give me a new perspective! All is closer to being right with the world!

I graduated high school and went to college. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to go to college and pursue a higher education, and not be in deep of debt as I'd thought I'd be because my parents set aside enough money to pay for the majority of my college. I'm relieved to be done with high school because I never felt accepted there and hope college is better.

So much has happened in the last year that I could easily label as "significant". I was ordained to the priesthood in December of Last year; I've dealt with issues that have ranged from benign to major since that point. However, all things being considered, I still remain deeply grateful and humbled by the call from God's people to serve in this capacity. I admit that it's called me to a deeper kind of love and life that makes me respond to others differently and react to their stories in a new way and in a way that speaks deeply to who I am and to who they are. It's a truly moving thing to know that you are changed and that you are different from who you used to be because others saw something in you that you didn't think possible.

I concepted and produced a seminar for the first time. Its success was strangely surprising and I felt very proud of myself.

Lost 8 pds in a workout group. Mixed feelings. It was hard to take time for myself and leave my family. It was time and work to lose the weight. But added mental weight.

This past year, I got engaged! It am so grateful to know that the love of the life will be with me for the rest of our lives, and I'm so excited for our married life together. By the time I see this next year, we'll have spent two months married together, so I'm curious to see how I'll be answering this question next year.

In May I had an internship in a class with children, age of 4. I already did a replacement in that same class, that went very well and I looked forward to do the internship. My promotor went sick a few days before the start of my internship, and I got a substitute. She hated me and told me I was arrogant, selfish and I wasn't able to become a teacher. She broke me, she broke my heart and my dream. I had no support, except for my friend, who I could tell everything and believed me. The director of the school didn't believe me. The only luck I had, was that my supervisor of college knew there was something wrong. She called me the day after I finished my internship and told me she would do everything to make me pass my internship. And she did. It's now easier again to believe in people.

I quit my job, sold my home and my car, and moved across the country to begin rabbinical school. While I still feel a bit dislocated and rootless--not helped by the fact that I still have no permanent home in NYC because closing on my apartment is taking forever--I also feel excited and thankful for a fresh start. "In New York you can be a new (wo)man..."

The most significant event that happened to me this year would be getting married to my husband. Planning it was a whirlwind but the day was wonderful and I wouldn't change it for anything. Leading up to the wedding I was getting a bit scared, nervous for what was coming. I know I"m probably not the only woman who feels this way leading up to her wedding, but it wasn't the easiest path. I didn't stray from my husband but I was making decisions that were not healthy and ultimately did create a shift and a change in our relationship. I continue to make a few stupid choices even after we got married (not the brightest crayon in the box, obviously) but I love my husband and I always will. He's wonderful in many ways, and like myself, has things we can work on to grow and make our relationship even better. It will be difficult, which I knew from the start, but I also know it will be worth it.

The orange asshole won. It has deeply affected me and made me question whether or not I belong in this country. It is unbelievable that so many Americans could support a person like this. I am filled with disgust.

A significant experience....It's difficult to think back over they year...I went from meditating every morning to not meditating at all....I feel like I am in the dark night of the soul....I knew I "should" continue my practice, and had some feelings about it, yet didn't have the energy or the will to do it. I clearly was not inspired, grateful or relieved. I was and am puzzled.

Losing my job began as only blessing. Now although I’m glad I’ll be a Rabbi, having chosen to go back to school again, I’m very anxious about where this year will lead and how we will afford it. My wife is not worried. But I am. I’m grateful and anxious.

This year. Oh my goodness this year. Since last rosh hashana I have (in order): Fallen deeper in love, gotten engaged, moved to Manhattan, went back on Prozac, was hired to a dream job, got married, dumped my therapist, mini mooned, made it through welcome week, restarted my Ashtanga practice. I am so wildly grateful for everything that I have been gifted this year, everything I have earned, everything I have accomplished. This year broke every record, i feel that I'm truly living my truth and my dream. I can't wait to see what happens next year-- personally. That said, the election of 45 has been painful, depressing, scary... it's as bad if not worse than I imagined. I so hope that there will be changes for the good next year in this realm but I can't imagine how that will come to be.

I was asked to cook at a Burning Man camp for 280 people. When I was initially asked, I immediately said no. My friends weren't going and I had always had this idea that I would go with my boyfriend so I completely dismissed it. When I was asked again, only a couple weeks before the event, it was clear that the Universe was nudging me to go. My schedule was pretty clear and my Assistant was keen to take over my work. I was terrified to go. I wouldn't be going with friends. I wouldn't have my car, a tried and tested safety net. I'd heard the elements can be difficult. It felt unsafe but something deep inside me said, "go". TO say that I'm grateful I went is an under statement. I came back light, determined, in awe, optimistic...It was truly a magical experience, stepping into my 31st year on this planet. There were some very dark moments on that trip. I was thrown lessons left, right and centre. But I kept moving through circumstance with a compass of what feels good. It's a beautiful place to navigate from. I learnt that amazing experience can happen anywhere if you stay open to them. I learnt that everything always works out so worry and stressless. I learnt that kindred spirits can be found many places in the right environments. I came back with a deep understanding that there are many soulmates on this globe for one another but timing and circumstance decide if it's the time or not.

I visited my cousin in Europe. It has been a lifelong dream to visit Europe. Something that I have imagined doing since I was a child. It was also so amazing to connect with my cousin. She has a sweet toddler and her mother (my aunt) died when she was young. I felt so happy to see her doing so well - I realized that I really want to be close to her and her son. Family is so important.

Donald Trump is president of the US. I think most people are still in shock. He is a hateful, horrible bully and I hope he is impeached. I had the slimmest hope that he would become a regular republican president but he did not. I thought he would let others run the government but he did not. I am disgusted, embarrassed, confused, shocked on a daily basis by what he says and tweets. It depresses me that so many voted for him. I pray for the world's safety as he is currently in a childish exchange of insults with Kim Jung Il who has built missiles that can hit us and is developing more nuclear capabilities. Our president calls him "Rocket Man" like a 7th grader would. God help us, please.

I came into myself. I'm 28 years old, and it has only been in the past year that I truly developed into an individual. Since I was fifteen, I have always been half of a whole. During the brief time periods where I wasn't in a relationship, I fell into a deep depression and engaged in risky behaviors to fill the empty void inside me, until I found another relationship to throw myself into. This past year, I've come into my own. I identified what MY interests are, what I like to do, what I want to do -- and what I DON'T want to do. I travel, I earned my yoga teacher certification, I earned my PHR certification, I have been an awesome dog and cat mom, I have done things that scared me, I have done things that have exhilarated me. I have learned to be alone without being lonely, to feel as though I fill up space, and that space matters. That doesn't mean I always feel comfortable and secure. There are always moments of doubt, shadows of insecurity. But what I have learned over the last year is -- that's life. It goes up, it goes down, but most importantly, it goes on. When it is horrible, I know that is will not be horrible forever, and that is what keeps me moving forward, whereas before I would be stuck in a holding pattern, scared to try anything for fear of making it worse. But now, I am no longer afraid, even when I feel scared temporarily -- because I know it will pass. Nothing is better than feeling whole. And you really just can't beat that with a stick.

I found my birth mother. I'm incredibly grateful that I still had the email address that I registered with those adoptee websites 13 years ago. It hasn't changed me, but I feel more free.

I have lost my job and while I have time to find a new job, it is a very stressful time. I am relieved as I was under a lot of stress in my current role, but due to my age and level of experience it is difficult to find a job at the same salary level. The whole experience of looking for a job is a very challenging experience.

Most significantly, I have learned how to eat mindfully, which carries over into life. To not be haunted by food, denial or binge, is huge. I am relieved, grateful, inspired, hopeful for the future. In addition, I now have Mandalay and am making my way in the study of dressage. I have a horse to love.

My wife created "an intervention" due to advice she received from some psychic nonsense and cased our marriage to break apart. True, I was intending to end the marriage within 6 months of that time, but i may not have and there was potential that we would have reconciled and had an even better marriage. But pretty much everything that went from that "intervention" brought out why i can't be with that woman anymore. so i am overwhelmed about the separation and the ensuing divorce but at the same time, i am so happy to not be beholden to a shrew and unstable person. another major discordant blow is the fact that my children will be stuck with her

As I saw this question, the first thing that came to mind was my decision to convert to Judaism. It was sitting quietly and writing before the Yom Kippur afternoon service that I realized deeply that these are my people, like Ruth I realized "your people will be my people, your God my God." It was such a moment of clarity. Later I would approach my Rabbi about what I needed to do. It meant giving up preaching and no longer staying betwixt and between. Both terrifying and liberating at the same time. I expected more grief, more feeling of loss but being so clear on where I am going, made it clear that it was time to let go of the past and put my whole self firmly into this new chapter of my life. I look forward to completing my conversion in 5778!

This year, I realized that I am 1-3 years away from retirement. And if things keep going the way they are, it's on the low side of that. Knowing that I have an option that doesn't involve worrying about being too old to hire is liberating.

I realize now that I will not find my b'sherit in this lifetime. I've had many cherished loves in this life, but not one that has sustained. I realize I'm not alone in this, and though grateful for the many joys I've shared, and love I've received; I'm saddened by the loss. In fact, though I have so much to be grateful for, I find myself unable to not be depressed and saddened by the growing disarray of not only my living situation, but of the horror and cruelty in so much of the world. Gross inequality, with no hope of alleviating or addressing inequities. Yes, I am grateful, but also Resentful, Dismayed, Angry and Horrified.

sigh. i sent my daughter to school wearing a "nasty woman" tshirt on tuesday november 8th with such hopes that possibilities were more open for women in the US. my husband and i watched TV with alarm as the votes were not as we thought they were going to be. it was an eery moment when the power went off on the television and we went to bed in shock that trump became president. we both did not sleep well. tossing turning. i woke up to go to my class at the Y. it has been the only time i could not finish a work out. another woman next to me was in tears. nothing helped.

A significant experience that happened in the past year occurred at work. I realized a co-worker was manipulative and just out for themselves. It may have caused me to align myself with the lesser of two evils.

Last year I went abroad for an internship. It got very hard at times, but as a result I'm a lot less naive now. Sometimes I am resentful about the whole thing, but deep down I know it was all a necessary life lesson.

I was called out of retirement to help my old company close a "problem project". When approached I was so vain to be "needed". While I will keep my word to help them with this project it has turned out to be much more time consuming than I ever expected.

My youngest daughter started Kindergarten this year and as a result I sensed a change in my relationship to motherhood. I have been a "baby mama" for so many years, the transition to being a mom of 2 school aged daughters feels different. It's freed space for me to focus on who I am aside from a mother and yet I also feel a sense of panic as I try to sort out what that means and what to do with myself. My role as a mother to babies fit and felt good. This new role is less clear and as a result, is more challenging.

I completed a year of recovery in SLAA! I am grateful, relieved, and inspired. My attitude and perspective is totally different. This recovery has changed everything. I have a new sense of spirituality and a new relationship with myself and God. I may not have been this happy in decades...

Last year, i had been chasing the dream job others want for me. Particularly my parents. They’ve always wanted me to become a Nurse and so i did. But then again finding the Job and getting a stable position isn’t a given to just anyone. You have to know someone who has a higher position in the government close enough to ask the Mayor/ Governor to give you a job. It affected my final decision greatly. Honestly, i felt betrayed because when i applied for a job at some hospital they called to notify me that i will already work at a specific month and then a few months had past , i didn’t get the call again. I asked why am i so Unlucky? I knocked on every door but those doors are still closed with too much lock on it to make sure i can’t go in. Finally i gave up and realized it wasn’t for me and i have accepted that w/o stress nor grudge whatsoever. That’s just how i deal with things. I don’t like hatred and holding grudges on/to something that’s not meant for me. I’m glad cause now i am on my verge to greatness. Following my own footsteps. Following my own lead. Finally a business owner.

Both my daughters had babies. I have many different feelings and it is very hard to explain. I love my grandchildren with all my heart but, I do wish they were born under different circumstances. I am also very proud of the job my children are doing raising their children, I have to say they are wonderful mothers.

Trump. That fucking election. Deeply feel the reality of what this means that our country is. Not grateful at all. The only bits of hope are people coming together and feeling like they can speak out. Still working through things, but I'm very angry and I'm not sure how to get out of it.

Donald Trump was elected president and politics have been upended in this country. It has made me very scared, nervous, frustrated and angry. I am fearful for what will happen to this country and for the entire world. I am fearful that climate change will be sped up and that planet earth will be irrevocably changed. I am worried that my health insurance won't be guaranteed.

So many answers. We moved from Montana to California. I was resentful but now I’m relieved. I’m also starting a new job tokorrow after being home with my kids for the past two years. I’m incredibly excited and inspired.

My baby boy went off the college. It was pretty big as it left me as an empty nester and with a husband who travels a lot for work my nest has really been empty. It’s been an interesting and sometimes uncomfortable experience being alone so often. I’m learning a lot about myself and can see how important having community is. It’s really not something Ive cultivated in my life — something I am now eager to do. So it has me thinking a lot about what I want and who I want to spend time with. I have hindsight on my side this time as my son was home this summer, we just dropped him off at school and my husband leaves to light fedora a week. So, part II needs to be different — last year was a little too lonely. I feel grateful for the opportunity to learn even more about myself — always a welcomed opportunity.

My partner and I got engaged, moved in together, and had our civil marriage ceremony on the same date everyone in his family has gotten married for the past 3 generations. In a month we'll have our Jewish ceremony and full celebration, but we've already started building our life together and looking forward to what comes after. I feel truly blessed to have found my bashert.

Breakup. Briefly resentful and disappointed; Grateful, relieved, inspired and empowered.

A significant experience that happened in this past year was saying yes in the moment and going to Amsterdam within 24 hours of saying yes to lead and facilitate the Young Happy minds train the trainers. I went as Yvonne could not fly and took a massive chance. The experience was a true reflection of what happens when I put myself in my stretch zone. This experience showed me what a great facilitator I am, even without any preparation. It really transformed my confidence as a facilitator which continues. It taught me to say Yes more, put myself in my stretch zone and trust in myself. Since I have really committed to facilitating more spaces and I am grateful to Yvonne for believing in me.

I got engaged! I got engaged March this year. Although we had discussed it, it was a surprise when it happened - my partner had been away for work for almost a month and arrived back just before our 5th anniversary. We decided to go away for the weekend to celebrate and to catch up. I was and am excited, its something I've wanted for along time. We've started to plan and are getting married next year. Its lovely planning it together, it's somethings positive to focus on. It has instigated deeper conversations about our life together and added even more colour to our relationship.

This year I learned that I don't have to be strong enough to handle everything myself. There is no shame in needing support. It is strength to admit you can't, nor are you built to take all life throws at you alone. I am so grateful that God saw me through one of the hardest growing periods of my life. I am learning to not only love myself, but to allow people to love me back by being there for me. It has truly been a blessing to find that peoole really will love the parts of you, that you don't love.

Discovering that I am missing a lot of things in my life. A lot of batch is going to different seminars, conferences and joing a lot of competitions while I stay inside my comfort zone. Especially when I was editing my resume, it's so bare and plain. Nothing special or noteworthy. I felt inspired yet regretful. I missed a lot of opportunities and wasted a lot of time not putting myself out there. Putting my instant gratification over future benefits.

The play. Put me on the path to acting. Im grateful.

I realized my purpose in life is to bring peace to the world. I now focus my actions and conversations towards that goal. I have decided to take on new projects in my life. I am currently working on bringing the possibility of relaxation and hapliness to parents through a community, both online and in person, dedicated to giving parents the tools and advice they need to live happy lives. I recently got a summer internship over the summer. Which turned into a part time job upon finishing the internship duration. Very happy and fortunate. Because I've been taking on so much in my life and bringing other people into wbat I'm doing, I have has numerous experiences that showed me that I am the only one stopping me from doing what I want and everyone is out to help me.

My youngest got engaged. It has brought up a lot of emotions for me. Happy. Sad. Etc.

I coached volleyball at my former school and was coaching the daughter of the middle school principal. I made the decision to put her on JV because she just wasn't at the varsity level. My decision infuriated her father who proceeded to harrass me and try to get me fired. It made for a miserable experience and a terrible season. I felt like I let down my players by letting the situation get to me. Ultimately though, I'm grateful for what happened because it was the catalyst for me leaving my former district and moving to Arizona where I now work for an incredible school district. I feel inspired every day by the administration, faculty, staff, and students.

Year in Israel!!! A confidence boost, a new place to love, so much learning, competence in conversation with Jews. I think more than I realize, the belief in myself that I can do a thing if it's a thing that needs to be done.

I went to Spain. I am extremely grateful for the ability to travel.

Going to grad school to study art therapy. It felt like such an overwhelming relief to figure out my career path. I loved (almost) every minute of it.

In the past year (or close to it), I attended Burning Man. As a result of my time there and a pivotal reiki session, my true nature as a more-sensitive-than-average person really sunk it and allowed me the freedom to take care of myself in a more intelligent and guilt-free way.

My mom had either seizures or TIA with declines. She has been on hospice since November. She lives with us, by my choosing. I never expected her to live to September. She continues to decline slowly. Excruciatingly slowly. It has affected every aspect of my life. I continue to work full time. My job has a certain flexibility and I am able to come home midday two days a week and help get her up and dressed. Hospice provides assistance the other 3 days. As she has declined and needed more and more assistance my ability to socialize and "have a life" has diminished. My life is work and then Mom. I am supremely disappointed in my family and many friends...but with my sister, I realize that she did not make this choice--to keep mom at home. She does not have the patience or capacity to walk this path. This has been my choice. I am grateful to my husband and to my dear friend, who is taking a break from her life to come and help me, so I can help mom. I could not do this alone. They are my sanctuary and support. I have not been able to participate in many things that I would like to do. But each day, I make this choice to care for Mom. It helps to know that it is my choice. There is nothing in the world and no way to prepare for the demands of being the primary caregiver. This is the antithesis of the popular culture of hiding from the old, from the sick, from those with memory loss, the incontinent. Handing them off to be cared for by others. But in doing so, we miss the lesson of the preciousness of life, that love remains, that we are capable of great things. There is NOTHING like taking care of a slowly dying parent to put into practice everything you know about mindfulness and being present. Learning over and over again that truly, you have no control and then coming to terms with that, and just letting go of how things should be and living with how things are. I am so ready to have my life back, to be free to go out and to make plans. I am so not ready to say the final goodbye. I am grateful that I have support to walk this path with my mother. I am glad that I can live my values to save a life is to save the whole world. I will not have regrets that I gave my mother this gift of loving kindness as she winds down this life and sets sail for the other side. These days, there are fewer times when I see the light in her eyes. She sleeps more and more. Before I turn out the light for the evening as we go through our goodnight routine, I tell her, "This is not the end of the book...it's just the end of the chapter. We will still be able to love across time and space." Ken yihe ratzon.

This past year, I went to Israel for the first time in my life. I am so grateful for that amazing experience. My trip to Israel inspired me, and really awakened me to become a person I haven't been in a while. The trip motivated me to work hard and not give up on things that I thought were hopeful. Being in my home country was such an amazing experience. It was indescribable the feeling of being surrounded by people like me. With the increasing waves of anti-Semitism following the election, Israel felt like an escape from the hate of America. I love Israel for so many reasons. It has reaffirmed my faith in God, in Judaism, and in people. I love Israel, and I feel so grateful that I had the chance of to go this past summer. I can't wait to return this summer, with the Diller fellowship. I am so unbelievably lucky.

About 4 months ago I discovered an alternative treatment that has changed my life! Though I still suffer from pain, depression and overwhelm, it's now decreased about 75%. After some very bad months through winter and spring, I'm now walking, eating better, cooking again and involved in (too) many projects, causes and activities. I am coping better with problems, such as my mother, her deterioration and her rages. I want everyone to try CBD oil (without THC, it doesn't get you high) used as an anti-inflammatory. I've been recommending it to all my friends and a number have started using it with good results. So grateful to feel better!

I graduated from Grad school. Initially, I was excited to graduate and start working in the social work field, but I'm still looking for a job...almost 5 months later. These last five months have left me more resentful and less secure and less confident than before. I never imagined it taking this long to find a job and it's really hurting me and my family financially. I am so eager to begin my work and continue learning in this field, but they definitely don't prepare you for this gap in grad school.

I left my husband of six years, partner of nearly ten years. It's been six months since I moved out, and it's been the most painful experience of my life. There has also been relief. There was no wrong doing, no adultery, but there was a lot of not taking responsibility for oneself. I love this person, but I wanted him to be someone he couldn't be. I realized I need to be in partnership with someone who is able to truly self reflect and look at himself, and not blame the world, or others, or me for his discontent. The pain has been so immense, I understand why people stay in unhappy marriages - this is not for the faint of heart. I'm not resentful - I've done a lot of personal work, which is how I arrived at the decision to leave the marriage and not blame my husband. He was not doing anything to me, he was depressed and struggling, and I couldn't rescue him, nor he me. I'm putting one foot in front of the other and taking responsibility for my own happiness and fulfillment. I'm inspired to connect with myself, discover more about who i am, what i love, and what i can contribute.

I got a new home on Rosh Hashanah. It is intimidating, but it is an auspicious day to have a new home. It has a yard. It is bigger than my old home and has wood floors. I just have to paint and move, which is intimidating. I am sure I will do it, and next year laugh at how much it has seamlessly blended into the passage of the year.

After many years of talking about it, I finally made the decision to go out on my own as a financial planner. I told my boss back in April about my plans. My last day was in July. I was became official with the state of Virginia on August 23rd of this year. I am so extraordinarily grateful that I finally had the courage to f0llow my dream. It has been exhilarating, and terrifying and satisfying all at the same time. I love being in control of my schedule and running a business the way I think it should be run. Though scary, it feels exactly like this is what I should be doing with my life.

I GRADUATED! Woah. Talk about uprooting a life! I'm proud of the accomplishment, but also, despite having a fellowship for the year, I still feel pretty lost and directionless. It's SO hard to narrow my focus of how I want to spend my days, and what I'm going to do to support myself, so I'm hoping this year brings some clarity in that realm.

We sold our home and moved half-way across the country as my husband took a new job. I gave up my job and left my community where I've lived for 23 years. School. Synagogue. Friends. Favorite shops. Easier access to kosher food. Familiar everything. I feel uprooted and unsettled. Angry and despondent. The Jewish schools here aren't nearly what they were at "home" and my kid's education is suffering as a result. The cost of living has turned out not to be less than expected but far more, which has me stressed and resentful. While I'm glad my spouse likes his new job, I feel that I've given up everything and am not getting anything in return.

I met my current partner, Jim, online and then in person, and very quickly (for me), fell in love with him! I am grateful, surprised, delighted, thrilled, anxious, anticipatory, humbled, hopeful, content, and curious to see what is coming next in our relationship. I am very conscious of trying to learn and grow and do things differently in this relationship than I ever have in the past -- to make this an intentional relationship full of love, desire and laughter.

I had a really terrible visit with my family. My mom and sister came and it was like having a two-headed monster who just wanted to stare at me. I knocked myself out planning trips for them and then doing the trips, and they didn't care. They just wanted to spend time with me. I was/am upset that I was not my best self during the visit, and that they were not the people I wanted them to be. At 32 I finally feel like my mom and sister are almost strangers. It brought me closer to my dad, briefly, but now I think I have a more objective view of all of us. Mostly it makes me sad.

I got married!!! This is my second marriage and this time I got it right! He makes me so very happy. We dated for two years before we said "I Do." I so look forward to spending the rest of my life with him....

I continue to persevere in this trust litigation. I am winning, thanks to God. I beleive that God made Asimou really scared of me. I am extremely grateful to God. I am neither relieved or inspired. I am resentful that the litigation is so time consuming.

The results of the election last November absolutely shook my world. It was the most uncomfortable realization to acknowledge the fact that certain people in our country think and act according to an outdated, uneducated, and bigoted way of thinking. Certain people I once respected I know longer respect, and other people who I still respect have been diminished in my eyes. Both of these are to my great disappointment. I've been trying to think of how (if?) I can forgive these people and find common ground with them, but at this point I don't believe I can with all of them.

I decided that as much as I love makeup it was not giving me what I was putting into it. I completely underestimated the effort I would have to put into being a freelancer while working part time in retail. So, I decided to retrain in marketing. Realising that I was under prepared and had not achieved what I wanted was difficult to accept, but for my own (and professional) sake I had to grow up. Just because I'm good at something doesn't mean I was suited to the environment in which I was working. I've learned that being realistic and resilient will enable me to be successful in the future.

"significant" to me is minor to most. I have hired someone to take care of my gardens. He did major grunt work - digging trenches and now he's going to take care of things I could do but rather not do at $35/hour. It's time to hire people to do for me. I need to rest my thumb.

I guess the most significant set of experiences have been related to political developments. Starting up IndivisibleShaker and @IndivisibleCLE, and learning about how much impact I can have by showing up, using social media and being involved, has been life-changing.

I parted ways with my best friend of 30 years. I was very angry and hurt. I am grateful for the pressure being gone. I am also relieved of the financial burden & responsibilities that weren't mine. I had become resentful of being lied to and taken advantage of. I've been inspired to move forward in life. I called this morning & left a message letting her know I have forgiven her and wish her nothing going but the best.

Financial insecurity is really wearing me out. I'm tired of worrying about money all of the time. I'm overwhelmed.

I found out my husband has a neurological disease which is progressive and for which there is no current treatment. I am grateful that we were fortunate enough to be accepted into a clinical trial I don't know if it is working, but it gives us all hope and for now, that is the best we can ask for.

Trump got elected. I am angry, annoyed, resentful, incredulous and hoping to create change.

My husband decided he doesn't want to be married to me anymore. This turned my world upside down! I am devastated, confused, vulnerable and lost. I know that I have to respect his decision since I don't want to live with someone who doesn't love . I have to find my inner-strength and make decisions that will affect my future. But then I think about getting married in the first place, I don't remember that being hard to decide. I didn't know anything then either. We moved far away from my family and I never looked back. So I have to find that young woman inside me and go from there.

I attended a session with Matt Kahn and it reinforced that the key to moving forward is to love whatever arises. And to feel things through our bodies. This technique brings up a few things that I think are so important in evolving as a species. First, when we have a conversation with our feelings, that takes away the scary, fear based stuff (Think of the Disney Movie, Inside Out) Secondly, you gain clarity about polarity. Things are good or bad, they are just energy. Nothing to fear. Finally, we are bodies on a spiritual journey. Our bodies have evolved and, through DNA, bring survival tactics and behaviors that served them when they were in lack, pain, struggle and scarcity. Now, we can objectively look at them and make new and different choices. I feel grateful, relieved, and find that answering this question has brought some clarity.

i watched/witnessed elise die. it impacted me tremendously. i am in awe of all of it. how her tiny body failed her. how her body was/is just a vessel. how we surrounded her with as much love as possible. to witness her pain, to try to ease it in some way. i am in total awe of how alex cared for her, what devotion and love. i am grateful i am relieved i am so sad and i am exhausted by the hugeness of the experience

Wow, so much. it is almost impossible to narrow this down. A year ago I was new to Tucson, in my first semester of my PhD program, living on my own 2500 miles from everyone and everything I ever knew, trying to form a new academic identity for my graduate studies. Since then I met the love of my life at a women's rally, moved in with her and out of the miserable non-home I was sharing with Al, grown my family to include a tortoise and 3 new cats (one of which we adopted together - shoutout Levar), got 3 new tattoos, largely made peace with my family (oh yeah, my mom moved very suddenly back to Scotland - there's another thing), began therapy, overcame my fear of pharmaceuticals and discovered the therapeutic self-care that medication can offer, and so much more. It's been a year, y'all - I'm not even touching the political spectrum. But to focus on one thing in particular, I just recently dropped out of that PhD program after accepting that a life in academia is absolutely not what I want. It was too far removed from actually making a difference in the community to feel meaningful or important to me. I was offered a full-time job with Emerge! to facilitate their Men's Education Program. I'll be working with men towards understanding domestic violence - both in terms of our accountability and the social parameters that lead us to abusive tactics. I start next friday! (9/29/17) I expect it is going to be incredibly challenging and emotional difficult at times, but I am extremely excited for this opportunity. It will be interesting to see if I am still doing the same job a year from now, and if I am enrolled in the MSW program at ASU as I've planned. All I know for sure right now is that I gambled big with a lot on the line, and I am learning how important that is. I have no regrets whatsoever, and I don't think I have ever been so happy. :)

A new company came to my small Ky city and I took a full time position for the first time in 5 years. I am grateful and relieved. My mental health is better and I am inspired by this opportunity. Even though I am financially sound, I will be able to put more money aside for the future. At 55, I have no idea how long I might be around at this point. Things move fast these days.

I know now that I have to break off with a man that I havee been seeing I moved out of my home. I love him, but he is childish and needy, and needs to be parented, in many ways like my ex hsband. I am glad to have come to this realization before I married him, but distressed that my old patterns continue.

I lost my sister-in-law months before she was turning 62 and retiring. My brother and she planned to move to Sarasota to be near us. I was shocked, saddened and even somewhat angry as it just did not seem fair.

2017 was a rather quiet year without any significant experience. Private and business life was calm. Its a bit "waiting for the divorce date in 2018". The long-distance relationship is stable but my gf is very emotional and there is a chance that she can not cope with this relationship for a longer time. This are still in motion and I expect some tranquillity only after 2018.

Question 1 and 4 are the same for me. Can I actually talk about anything other than the election? I don't know. I grew up watching women struggle for their rights, and as soon as I was able, I joined the feminist movement. I trusted that hard work and perseverance would eventually break the glass ceiling here. I saw Hillary Clinton as the tip of a spear on which I was part of the staff behind her, and I trusted that when she went through, so would I. Instead, I learned that the majority of white women, much less white men, don't trust the qualifications of even the most eminently qualified and best-informed candidate of a generation because she was female. I wept over that statistic for weeks. That men could be sexist didn't astonish me. That women don't really trust women to lead -- not even when they run against a pussy-grabber with no background in the field he is supposed to lead -- that devastates me now. What to do about it? No idea. I keep standing up for immigrant rights, women's' rights, civil rights for minority groups including Jews, and I won't ever stop. But how do we make women trust themselves to run things? How do we make men trust the women in their lives who exhibit discernment and good judgment? That I don't know. I am despairing. I cry often about this. I won't give up, but I cannot accept this verdict on the competency of women. Ha-Shem made Devorah judge over Israel. Women have led before. Women MUST lead now, as men seem to want to send us to war with no real prudence right now. They want to disrupt the social contract that activist Jewish women worked so hard to enact in this country. What are any of us to do? I pray. I weep. I pray some more.

I felt God nudging me to jump ship from Hamilton to Hogg. I wasn't unhappy, it began when I saw Jaime and Mary Katherine Breed at the Abydos conference. I had lunch with them and began wondering how fun it would be to plan with them. But that didn't pan out, but I really enjoy planning with Taryn Walley. Ms. Ryan from Ireland is very giving, buying us coffees etc. But she is doing her own thing. Hogg is Inter Baccalaureate so I'm learning a whole new framework, complete with jargon, for teaching. I see kids everyday, but I only have 4 classes! That's 116 kids compared to 169 from last year. Its so different. I also have to integrate reading into the mix. After I left, all these stresses I had at my old school were uncovered as I entered the family-like culture of the new school. I am glad I moved. God told me back in March when I was wondering, "Oh Lord, what should I do?" I heard distinctly, "You know what to do." I took that as don't stagnate where you perceive you are safe. Go and be challenged. Go and grow. That you Jesus.

This summer Kathleen and I visited Prague and Berlin, and made a point of visiting a number of Holocaust-related sites (Theresienstadt, Murdered Jews Memorial, Jewish Museum). I think the most moving parts were the individual family stories - ordinary people living normal (happy?) lives suddenly uprooted and murdered just for being who they were. It was sobering to have that juxtaposed with the neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville - left me worried for the future, and desirous of taking professional action: combatting ideas in my classroom and researching how Germans and Americans have chosen to monumentalize their past.

Campylobacter. Three weeks of bedrest. Side Effects that linger for weeks. I lost about 10% of my body weight, which I really don't mind. It bothered me at first but now see it as a reboot. I'm not sure I agree with the Health Department about how I caught it. But I'm not resentful of getting it. Just will be more careful.

The most significant experience I've had this year was the death of Alex. I don't think I've experienced anything as sad or as all encompassing as the suicide of my friend. It has touched every aspect of my life, and although it happened 4 months ago, I still think about her and her death at least every other day. At the time, her attempt and subsequent death took over my mind and body. I was acting out in anger and sadness towards those around me that didn't know my secret, and I wasn't able to sleep or do anything but think about her, the situation, and be depressed. I was emotionally exhausted all the time, and cried everyday. I also had to act in the most mature ways I've ever had to . . . by telling people what happened, comforting them, and reliving the news every time I did so. I had to think about the best way to deal with this experience, who to tell, when to tell them, how to tell them, what to do at all. I didn't know any answers, but just did what my gut and brain told me would be best. I think I did a pretty ok job at that. Alex's death made me feel death more vividly all around. I see the worthlessness and insignificance of life and every action taken in the world. Not that nothing matters, because it all matters in some way, but in the end, we will all die, and none of it will end up mattering. If we kill the earth and all of humanity ends, I don't think that's a problem, it's just the end. Is prolonging the end any better than nothingness? I think the experience has made me a happier person because no matter what happens to me, or what circumstances appear, I know they will end, and new circumstances will appear. Alex's death makes me see the long game clearer. Sometimes I think of a mundane detail in life and then think, "And Alex is dead." It pulls my attention back to how minuscule certain things are, but yet that life goes on and I still have to pick what shirt to wear or how to word an email or what to eat for dinner. I am so angry at Alex for what she did, and how she betrayed herself and everyone she knew, but I also cry because I can't imagine how much pain she must have been in to feel like there was no solution other than to end her life. I wish she didn't have to feel that pain, and in some ways I understand that she did what she thought she had to, no matter how delusional or wrong I think that act was. I'm glad she's not suffering anymore, but I also suffer way more because of the repercussions of that act. It's like a tiny tiny bit of her suffering was transferred to me, but I'm fine carrying that around.

I had a really wonderful connection with a guy that I had not felt in a really long time. It was very deep and I felt like I could fully be myself. Unfortunately it was long-distance and we did not make it in the end, I am still grateful for it. I am sad and hopeful and the same time because I hope I can find it again in the right time and place.

This year I got married it was beautiful and intense and it's imperfections reminded me how loved I was. I'm so grateful for every part of it for every little bit of everything that was the event. I am in awe of the life I have found for myself and super excited to have so many amazing lives touching mine. It's an amazing experience one I will never forget and a high point in a great life.

Donald Trump getting elected president and withdrawing from the Paris Climate Talks. I am concerned and so disappointed. I am concerned for all the National Monuments that are pricleless environemental treasures that will no longer be protected areas from development.

I switched up jobs for the better. I am relieved to be working in a healthier environment but have regrets about accepting a lowball offer. Time to amend this.

Not only did I move to Israel this year but I think most significantly I lived in Tzfat for two months. It was an experience I never expected for myself and I'm grateful for the opportunity. I learned a lot about Judaism and the religious lifestyle which I've never been a part of. I will never become religious but I'm so glad I had the chance to experience it and the beauty of Tzfat.

Immediately following the 5777 HHD’s, I was diagnosed with Mulitple Myeloma. I was sick with it while I led HHD worship and didn’t know it. This past year has been a journey through cancer treatment (sometimes really rough) to remission. My life is forever colored by my non-curable disease. I am at once relieved that I will soon get my life back, but always aware that I am a blood clot or re-emerging symptom away from peril. Nevertheless, I have learned much about myself having lived in an alternate universe. I learned to turn inward and return to my self; turn upward and more deeply connect to God; and turn outward serve my community with even more passion and compassion.

I had the privilege of taking a group of teens to Spain. They lived with families; so I didn't have them 24/7. It gave me a lot of alone time. Some of it I enjoyed, but some I wasted on Netflix. What I didn't do was try to make friends for the 3 weeks I was there. I didn't involve myself in community life like I would have when I was young. I felt old for the first time. I saw that people saw me as old as well (even though I'm only 55). I realized what a small world I live in now, how I'm reluctant to establish new relationships beyond my meager borders. I was grateful to get to know these things about myself at this stage in my life. I was sad about them too, maybe even a bit nostalgic. Given the opportunity, I won't let it happen again.

Traveling with my partner Ben (vacation road trip in California and to Seattle to move him in). I think we travel and work well together, and it showed me how strong our relationship is. I am really grateful to have him and to be able to grow together. It gives me a lot of hope to see us build a life together and solve problems properly when we both come from broken homes.

In April of 2016 I boarded a plane, bound for Mosul, Iraq to work in a field hospital... helping/nursing those injured in the crossfire between ISIS and ... the world. I am not sure that I have truly realized the impact of this experience on my life but what do I know for certain is that it I am forever changed... and the sequalae of this one month will echo on ... and on... and on... Nursing gravely injured Iraqis and Kurds - innocent bystanders in a war they don't agree with (i.e. Not ISIS supporters) - their limbs/organs decimated by morter blasts, sniper bullets, unrelenting infection.... And not only their bodies... their homes levelled. Not only a place of refuge but a building that housed their belongings, their memories... gone. And not only their homes. But... most significantly... often loved ones that lived within those walls. Killed. Or captured... only to be tortured/brainwashed by ISIS into carrying a weapon or wearing a bomb vest. Did this affect me? Absolutely. I am aghast at the destruction...cruelty... inhumanity... caused by the black poison of hate/intolerance. For this I still have no words. I am humbled and honoured to know people who stand to face this: doctors, nurses, surgeons, translators, support staff.... who answer hate with LOVE and a Heart that Serves, Hands that help Heal... I am grateful that I live in a safe place but angry at my fellow North American for living petty lives... fattened but the trivial pursuits of 'pleasure', 'excess' without a clue of how thin the veil of "safety" really is. I'm sick of the 'entitlement' of North America. I am certainly inspired to GO. To do more. To help elsewhere. As well as at home. To be a Light in Dark Places. For that is where my life's deepest longing meets the world's deepest need.

It's hard to narrow this to just one experience. However, I think that losing our beloved Bunny was so significant. This was the first time I was responsible for making the decision to euthanize a pet. It was such a heart-wrenching time, filled with a week of tears before finalizing the decision. However, there was a sense of relief, as I realized she was no longer suffering. There was guilt and regret, realizing that I had missed the signs of hyper-thyroidism. Most of all, there is appreciation for the role that pets play in our lives. Those furry little critters crawl into our hearts, offering unconditional love.

I helped organize the WFAN (Women Food & Ag Network) conference in Nebraska City in November of 2016. Although I played a minor role, I participated in monthly organizing meetings, provided produce for the meal, and lead one of the farm tours. This was the first conference I attended that was specifically for women farmers (I also later attended the National WISA conference in Oregon). It is sometimes easy to overlook the fact that most farming conferences are predominantly male when it comes to the presenters and participants. This has an effect on conference content and who speaks up at the conferences. At both WFAN and WISA, I felt a communal and collaborative spirit as well as specific topics to support the challenges I go through as a female farmer. I am incredibly grateful that communities value having conferences specifically for minority groups. It helps bring a new perspective and a safe space for those individuals. The energy of both of the conferences felt different than let's say PFI or NSAS conferences. I was inspired in a new way - in a way to promote value added products and relationship marketing, which I think could be a big support to Matt and my farming business. Matt does the production side well. I think I have other qualities that can aid outside of production, which are equally important both financially and emotionally.

I have now lived in Toronto for an entire year. This past year, in it's entirety has been a significant experience in my life. Exploring the city and making new friends. Making a new city in a different province a home. I am grateful for this experience. It has taught me so much. It has made Eric and I closer. It has made me treasure my friendships with my friends who are so supportive even though I don't see them as often. It has also opened me up to new friendships. I was resentful at first but now I am grateful. I am excited to move and experience new places in our future as well.

I went through depression for about 2 months I was close to finishing school in august and I was really excited to be done . Ready to start working making money. Well when I was close to graduating I end up losing a relationship that was 3 year , lost my best friend, lost my job and unfortunately my car had broken down. Yeah we can say everything came at once during the time I didn't have nobody nor a job I had realized WHO I WAS , WHO I AM , AND WHO I WANTED YO BE . Honestly I'm pretty glad all this happen it helped me to grow and learn more about myself what I needed to change to be able to succeed where I was heading

My father died. Since then my siblings and I have been going through the condo to split items up, donate, toss, ... I have felt at times sad at reminders of my parents and my loss while also feeling happy at funny moments we recalled.

This year, just two weeks ago, give or take, I emerged from the mikvah as a Jew. It, the moment itself, bursting through the waters, was significant in a way that I did not anticipate. The immediate journey to conversion had been a year-long process, although the spiritual journey had been much longer. The culmination of it shouldn't have come as a surprise. If you walk in the same direction for a year, arrival should be a foregone conclusion. I hadn't anticipated the emotional impact, perhaps because I tended to do a fairly muted version of 'emotion.' This was huge, this was significant, this was a life-changing event... I emerged with a new relationship to my community and to the world. And yet... there was also an emotional let down. The journey to conversion is over. What's the next journey?

One of my best friends died unexpectedly. I am so sad. It is hard to get over it. I was not family but still the loss is so real. She was just an astounding person, funny and sassy and fun. She loved me unconditionally. She loved my kids. If anyone was mean to me, even slightly, that person became her enemy. She was a hoot. We had a lot of plans, to travel and play with her grandson and on and on. I love you, LuLu!

I cannot get past this diagnosis, it has stopped me in my tracks. I have aged without intention. It is like a wicked fairy waved a wand over me and changed me inside and out. My mind is stuck, my body bloated and I am being carried away to a place that I have no desire to be. I am no longer a woman, I am invisible except in the mirror where I am huge.

Benjamin, my first grandchild, was born. Being a grandparent has been a profound experience. I am in love with this baby! Being with him I am truly "in the moment." His adorable little face, his smile, his giggle melt me. I can't stay away and have seen him nearly every week since he was born. This is so much better than being a first time parent because I know what to do and just love (nearly) every minute with him.

I lost my dog. It was one of the most heartbreaking experiences of my life. I had to make the decision. I still cry when I think about her sometimes. I just felt empty afterwards. I was so blessed to have her in my life. I don't think I could feel about another dog the way I felt about her. Despite that I am adopting another dog.

Recently a change in my job and the extreme stress it has put on me. I felt like I was going to break. I am surviving and feeling stronger. I am very good at my job and valued, but the extreme workload is not fair. I am looking at changing my plans for the next 6 years. I'm disappointed because I love what I do but it is too much for one person and I'm a responsible person that wants to stay on top of things. I'm a bit excited at what possibilities I might find and the freedom it could bring for me. I hope I don't chicken out!

The car accident happened on January 31st. At the time I was tired and stressed from work, feeling like I needed a break. Instead of going for professional development I decided to drive home instead. When the car hit me from behind I was so alarmed but had no idea how this would impact me. After seven months of not working and going only to therapy, I have returned to work but I am changed. I am still trying to understand this change. I am more accepting of my limitations and more patient with myself. I am not grateful for this event nor am I relieved. I simply accept it and try to move forward in my new skin, changed physically and altered mentally. Spiritually I am who I will be.

The election was a mess, Trump is awful and the country is more divided than ever. I have gone back and forth on whether the bubble I exist in is part of the problem, but my sense of justice insists we head toward freedom and love and away from the past. Grateful, relieved are not the words I would use. Potentially inspired in that we have more work to do.

Moving away and living by myself! That's been a great experience. I feel I made the right choice. Living by myself made appreciate more my family now that I dont see them as often and also value more all effort that my parents made to raise me now that I have to pay bills and clean after myself

I was given feedback by my employer that made me question whether I was any good at my position. I'm a highly-trained professional, in a life-and-death kind of field. I see people at their worst and try to help. And I was told, in a very passive and flat way, that I wasn't good. I felt enraged. I felt resentful of the individual delivering the feedback. And later I really questioned if I could do my job. I think I grew to push myself a little more and, after changing employers, am back to thinking that I can do this just as well as anyone else.

I started driving again. I drive a hand-controlled van and it's not easy to learn, but I did it and got back some independence. I was grateful to have the van, and inspired to do more. And then I had a crash. This threw me and although I wasn't that injured--I did break my sternum--I am now scared to get behind the wheel again. My husband can't drive much anymore, so it's on me. I'm a bit resentful of this. I'm always having to invent a new Brenda.

I became full-time tenure track faculty at Los Angeles Southwest College. I feel grateful for the opportunity. I get to use the skills I gained from my education in my position. I also get to work with other faculty and teach students. I’m also relieved. I no longer have to fill out countless job applications, go on interviews or wonder whether I will lose my job due to accreditation issues at my previous institution. At times, I do get a bit resentful because I wish I could take part in live (rather than watching recorded) webinars and conferences. Yet, there are times when I am truly inspired to go beyond expectations and really connect with students.

Retirement. Grateful and open to new adventures. Thanks

Living in St. Petersburg and then New York was my most significant experience, honestly. SPb rejuvenated me after a year of slow degradation, and New York gave me a whiff of a life that I want to lead. Both were difficult experiences that forced me to learn, to try, to focus, to be content with ambiguity. SPb was exactly what I needed -- the opportunity to be somewhere else and to do something new. The age-old melancholy of Russia gave to me new life and perspective on my problems, on history, on art, on the value of time. New York gave me that thrumming heartbeat and a different perspective, a different view of my future, the general future, on working with people. God, I want to go back to both. Beautiful places that are so incredibly important now.

I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. In December 2016, I started experiences really intense tingling and numbness that spread from my right foot to both feet and up my legs to up groin. I'd had tingling in my right foot and then my left toes on and off for a few years, but it had always been dismissed. I found a neurologist who did a spine MRI and a couple other tests, and I did NOT want to hear what the MRI results were. As far as I was concerned, the answer was either going to be bad news, or there was going to be nothing wrong, and then I'd have to continue to fight for someone to listen to me that I was actually experiencing these symptoms. That was the most shocking part when he called me, on inauguration day, to tell me that there was a lesion in my spine, and it was down to a malignant tumor, or multiple sclerosis. "Nothing wrong" was not an option. I joke now that when Donald Trump is being inaugurated President and that's not the worst thing about your day, something pretty freaking bad must have happened. Anyway, a week later, it had been determined that I did not have cancer, but I did have MS. Just like my father. My feelings come in waves, even now, 8 months later, and in stages too, almost like the stages of grief, but much more stretched out and with lots more stages and loops back, and periods where I'm just fine with it all. Sometimes it washes over me: I have MS. "Multiple sclerosis." It sounds so much more serious when you say the full thing instead of just the letters. And it is a shock, all over again, that I have it. Me. The person who I am, has a serious disease. I'm 35, and because I started feeling ill in college, and got a spinal tap that showed results indicate of MS at that time, at around age 20 or 21, they believe I've likely had it all this time. For 15 damn years, before anyone listened to me enough to catch it. Now, doctors are very kind and helpful, even for things not caused by the MS, like my connective tissue disorder which causes joint paint, or migraines. So I feel relieved, and grateful to the doctors who are helping me. I feel grateful toward the drug company (imagine!) who has been so helpful with teaching me how to inject their medication. I'm enraged at my body, and life, and medical misogyny. I'm resentful of the people who have distanced themselves from me because it makes them uncomfortable, mainly my lifelong best friend, Meredith, who stopped communicating with me as soon as I told her. I feel inspired by the other people I've met with MS, who live their lives and have fun and exercise and give me hope. And so overjoyed my girlfriend didn't consider it a reason not to meet me for the first time.

This one is easy, though it's more than one. In a span of 6 months, I got engaged, married and pregnant. Engaged and married I was so incredibly happy. I get to spend the rest of my life with the love of my life who had originally been a years-long crush and even longer friend! Pregnancy came as a surprise as we conceived pretty much immediately after the wedding. I wasn't ready for it to happen so fast and I was a bit resentful in the beginning but now I cannot wait for my own little smush!

When I was informed at my Mammography that because I had hit the 3 year mark of being cancer-free, I will now have fewer films taken. I felt grateful. I did not realize that thee 3 year mark had significance to it (any more significance than I feel each year has). There is a part of me that will hold my breath until I hear the 'all is clear' as well as get nervous from any unexplainable ache or pain..... But I AM A SURVIVOR and live each day with gratitude and joy!

I walked and cycled the Camino in Northern Spain. I didn't do it for religious or spiritual reasons but it was an experience I will remember for the rest of my life. It gave me a great sense of accomplishment and made me appreciate the ability of my body to keep going day after day, gaining in strength and ability. How did it make me feel? Joyful. I had a big grin on my face from day 1 and it returns whenever I think about the experience. I am grinning as I type this.

I travelled to NY, solo, for three weeks, for the first time, and in celebration of my 40th birthday. It reinvigorated me and inspired me, and reconnected me with parts of myself that I had lost touch with. Even though I'm still heavily in debt as a result, I'm profoundly grateful for the experience and to everyone who helped me along the way.

The presidential election outcome affected me significantly. While disheartened by the election outcome and current leadership in our already great nation, I have seen my rather historically conservative community take action in a progressive direction that make me hopeful. A grassroots, nonpartisan and very active group has formed and holds rallies, organizational and resistance meetings, voter registration drives, candidate forums etc, etc. on all manner of topics. And while I'm not a leader in this organization, when they hold a rally in the town square or in front of our US Congress person's office, I am there. And knowing there are so many in this traditionally conservative town/county who share progressive leanings inspires me and gives me hope.

I moved to New Jersey right before 5777. The most significant experience for me in 5777 was that for the first time, I was living outside of California. So many things changed. I was away from my family for the longest time I've ever been away from them. Everything was a new experience- driving, shopping, working, and eating were all different than what I was used to. I had to adjust my expectations to everything... The produce in the market is different, you have to pay to drive on the freeway, there is NO MEXICAN FOOD, and my job is huge. At first I had a hard time, being away from friends and family was difficult! Now, I'm thankful that I took this plunge. I've grown so much and feel like I could make a life for myself and Natalia out here on the east coast!

I am on dialysis, so there goes my hopes of travel. I have been off work since January. My frustrating year of unhealthyness started in the hospital over the Christmas. My stay lasted for just over three weeks. Great way to start the new year. First it was pneumonia, then kidney failure. Another year sick, short of money. Thankless job. I am very frustrated, disappointed 😔. I have been very lucky in love and am married to the most amazing, loving, supportive, inspiring husband. I have definitely been very 🍀 in 💖

Falling in Love was probably the most significant experience in the last year for me. Of course I'm tremendously grateful to have had this wonderful woman be part of my life. And then losing her was terribly sad. Although I understand her need for more spiritual and mental stimulation. Well it felt unfair that she wasn't able to be comfortable and relaxed in the environment here and there is a little resentment on my part as she felt it was my fault, I deeply appreciate the inspiration there for me to seriously improve my home as my home can get better and better until it is a welcoming place of beauty in every place you look.

The election left me a bit distressed however I've channeled that energy by attending several political meetings.

A project I started with my friends has changed the way I look at all the work I do. It has made me look to having an impact more and more in the work I do. I'm feeling more inspired to ensure that everything I do has a more lasting impact. Whether in my life and in the lives of others.

The experience itself wasn't particularly significant, but but the effects of it were. For the first time in years, I took a solo trip to Santa Barbara. The beach was lovely, but nearly everything that could go wrong, did. I had to change hotels ( picked the noisiest one!), got lost pretty much constantly, backed my rental car into a mailbox - and a friend's car!, missed my flight home by 3 minutes, and had a meltdown in the airport after Supershuttle caused me to miss my ride home. The funny thing is, though, that all those misadventures left me with an exhilarating feeling of resilience and confidence. Everything can go wrong - and it often does - and I can still take care of myself.

I aced my Masterthesis to my own surprise. It was not in line with the image of mediocracy I have of myself. Though it did cost me all my energy to pull this off as I was subsequently sick for months after. So in one hand I am inspired by the success and on the other I am learning that especially when I put my whole heart into something I need to give myself time to recover. And recharge!!

I got a puppy. It has been a great joy and a test of my patience, which is surprising since being an RN is a significant test of patience. I am incredibly grateful and through the difficulties I have not once regretted getting him. He brings me joy and shares his vulnerability with me, just as some of my patients do. In essence he restores my human compassion after long difficult days with people.

Being made redundant and losing another job a year later. It has made me question the motives of others, who you can trust in business (no one) and what I should be focusing on for my future career. Security and a job that doesn't impact so much on my home life is now more important to me than career fulfilment, although I know I will find that hard to let go of I have to remind myself that I have achieved so much. I also have to let the actions of my previous employer go - they criticism of me was not justified.

There has been no specific defining experience rather a shift in myself, an understanding of myself, a kindness and acceptance of how some past experiences have been sitting with me. I feel I have let go of something without having to define exactly what that something was. It feels good to be me just now, I feel strong and hopeful, a resilience.

An experience where I realized many things about myself: I am old, I can easily build up illusions that trick myself into living in a false reality, the stakes are set, the die is cast, I cannot complain, I have a roof over my head and food at will.

My significant experience was meeting Tango Husband. It was flirtatious, erotic, passionate, tumultuous, and healing. I'm grateful for having him in my life, and I miss him a great deal. I wish he could come back.

My old lover John died in a SNF. I was there most days for a month. I also tried to get his Court appointed conservator to let John die at home, but I wasn't able to negotiate that. I'm glad I spent John's last night with him, holding his hand. It was intensely intimate. I'm grateful that his current girlfriend came the next morning. I was devastated about how my proud friend lost control over his life because of the law. With $4M in assets, he should have died at home. I am grateful for the time I spent with him, and that I was able to draw him out of his crushing depression caused by being in essentially solitary confinement for months before I learned of his situtaiton. It was like being in a war zone to care for him there, begging for morphine and fighting for him. In the end, all I could give was myself. That may have been enough.

We moved back to Seattle this August and it stirred up a lot of different emotions. I was sad to leave Portland, and to abandon the summer/year of exploration that we had planned on. I was sad to leave the friends we had grown close to while there, and hurt and disappointed by lack of response I got from the people I thought I had been close to in graduate school. I was also scared of losing the things I had found living in Oregon: the independence from family, the sense of adult freedom, and the ease of getting out a doing fun things. The move itself was stressful. It was hard moving into a space we hadn't seen before and the unknown made the whole process harder I think. I was so, so anxious. I felt a huge pressure to get all moved in before my fellowship started. I wish I knew how to navigate this type of change with more equilibrium. Coming back to Seattle has felt good, like slipping back into a comfortable sweatshirt. We know this place: we have haunts, deep and personal internal maps, and the ability to navigate living life here. Our friends' excitement for our return has felt warm and reassuring. I am excited about the graduate school peers who have moved up here as well.

The Women's March was a worldwide protest on January 21, 2017, to advocate legislation and policies regarding human rights and I was there, in Washington D.C. Along with 40 of my fellow Unitarian Universalists, we took the 8-hour bus ride to participate in the most inspiring event of my life. What struck me most was not the speakers but the crowd. Not only was it massive, it was diverse. Fellow marchers were passionate, friendly and kind. Everyone we talked with felt that they needed to be there to express what kind of a nation we wanted to be. In light of our current administration, it was inspiring to be among people who felt that this was a time to raise their voices. There were so many that having a single march did not work. As we walked across the Mall (from near the Federal Triangle station to the Federal Center station), we saw a different march on each of the four streets we crossed. It was as if, somehow, like-minded people found each other and proceeded with the march on their own. We didn't need leaders -- we all led. I am so grateful to have been there. It was a moment in history that is now part of my history. And, I have found that, if my will starts to flag, I just look at my pictures from that day, and I am re-energized.

Decided to say yes to people I feel good around and no to people I dont or that I want a change in relationship with. I get along better with Craig now letting him know I could say no to our relationship because I didnt feel safe in it or saw the point of it.

I had to move back to NZ. I have mixed feelings, seeing parts of my family the way they are is depressing. I am grateful that my sister stepped in and helped me move back.

After looking at my answer from last year, I saw that it related to the demise of said relationship this year, which was sudden and very painful. I'm still sad and upset, and know that we will never have a friendship again. Also celebrated mine and my husbands 40th wedding anniversary with a big party, uncharacteristic for us. It was great getting family and friends together, even for that short period of time, then back to our less than satisfying normal.

Marilyn and then my grandmother died, in quick succession. Though many friends of mine have passed away, some of which affected me immensely, these deaths are the first familial deaths that hit me hard. These women were a part of me. Are a part of me. They were mother figures. My grandmother was the one person in my childhood who I felt loved me without any expectation or conditions. She was old, and in pain, and that's absolutely a comfort, but what will never hold any comfort is simply the fact that I will live the rest of my life not seeing her, not hearing her, not cuddling with her. I can't stand it. And I can't think of the future without her without weeping.

I have found some community ... after tremendous loss and heartbreak - I just keep going to various Jewish stuff meetings with different groups of people - different congregations - and I feel that I am finding a bit of "place".

In June I got what I thought would be a great job for the summer and fall. It was to be part-time in June, then full-time in July and August while someone was on maternity leave, then a potential for part-time in the fall (or even beyond). After less than 3 weeks I was "let go." He didn't say "fired," but I was fired. I had never been fired before. I was totally shocked, very confused, and extremely resentful at first. Last summer getting let go from SoCe Life was completely different than this. Interestingly, it really was for the best, I think. Not having the (very nice) paycheck has been hard, but other things this summer went so much better than they would have had I been working full time.

I got laid off in February. At age 52. This SUCKS. Don't let anyone tell you that ageism doesn't exist

My father in law has been in our care at our home. He has needed our care, but had been sent to a skilled nursing facility for several weeks. He is now home. What was inspiring was to see our family pull together and be by his side. Shabbat mornings we plaued Bingo with grandpa and my son would make everyone laugh, help those who needed it, and be grandpa's buddy. It was impressive to see an 18 year old give Shabbat mornings to Grandpa. I am also grateful to be able to see my husband take good care of his dad and be a role model for our children.

My adult stepdaughter moved back in with my husband and me this spring, as she starts up a new professional career in our local area. She lost her mother as a teen. I didn't meet her until after she left for college, and I never had the opportunity to be a mother to her. Now it's both a challenging situation, having an adult child move back home, and an opportunity to build a stronger relationship with her.

I was able to say the words and break up with my girlfriend of 10 years, who I'm still fond of but not as fond of in that way anymore. I mulled over it and rethought it and got advice on it for years, but just sat on the decision and let it eat at me for a loooong time. Years actually. I think my expectation was that breaking up would be the end, I'd never see her again, and I would be out on the street (or worse living back at home.) But now I'm so relieved that I did it. I am way less stressed without that baggage constantly weighing on my mind, and we are still good friends. My health has also improved a lot now that I'm not carrying around the secret. Looking forward to what the future holds now

I was elected to the community presidency and it has been ,ore than I bargained for. It is testing me in so many ways. Although I am committed to seeing my term through - damn, it's been hard so far. Looking for the pony in this.

In February I was driving to work when a 20-something idiot moron scumbag driving a Jaguar and going way too fast hit my car behind the right rear wheel, doing serious damage to my car and to my body. It has made this year very difficult. I have worked hard in physical therapy to reduce the pain I am still in.

Had a tough MBO review with Kira at RC and got an unexpectedly poor rating on a project that I worked hard at, and thought did quite well. As a result, I've distanced myself from the judgement and focused on what I can learn from the feedback, which is less about the success of the project and more about making sure that I manage perceptions actively.

Hopefully I can count a 10 month experience as an answer, because the last year was a pretty incredible one. I spent 10 months in Israel on Israel Government Fellows, and I am so happy and grateful for having made that decision. I know my way around Jerusalem more than most other places in the world, my Hebrew is better than at any time in my life, and I had countless enlightening experiences. I feel far more confident in my understanding of the many nuances of Israeli society and politics than before, even if my own opinions are less that fully defined. It feels amazing to have followed through on something I have wanted to so for so many years and for it to have been as meaningful and enjoyable of an experience as it was.

Not being depressed for three years in a row felt wonderful, and I feel tremendously grateful for my health and also somewhat grateful even to have gone through depression because it taught me so much. As I grow more confident of a healthy future, I am trying to figure out how to live more fully and with the compassion and care for others that I was shown. I'm also working on how to balance care for others with self care.

I cannot think of any truly significant experience that happened in the last year. I suppose going away completely by myself to Cozumel was pretty big. I've never travelled and been totally on my own. The trip was amazing and I recognized a lot of God's grace and his love for me in enjoying my time. I also realized I can travel and be alone and have a great time by myself. I told someone that I would not travel to Japan by myself but, writing this I think "Why not?" I could do it and have a great time doing it. I want to put that on my list of things to do - traverse Japan alone. Woohoo! After I learn some Japanese.

Argentina - Seeing the glaciers and what this truly means for our world.

A few weeks ago I was taken to the emergency room because I was behaving completely unlike myself. I had gaps in my memory and was behaving in a childlike state. I didn't know my name. I didn't remember I was married. After a day in the emergency room, a psych evaluation and two days of sleep - it was confirmed the reason for my mental breakdown was intense stress and sleep deprivation. After waking up and feeling incredibly horrified and embarrassed - I realized my own role in allowing stress to overwhelm my system and the impact almost ruin my career and - even worse - my marriage. I'm greatful for a wake up call that prompted healthier stress management and work life balance. I've completely changed my relationship with work and I'm forgiving myself for prioritizing work above my own health. And my marriage. I'm slowing unraveling the shame of the aftermath. And mostly, I'm so damn relieved that it was a one time thing that I can prevent in the future. I'm way more compassionate towards those who suffer from ongoing mental illness. And I'm ever greatful to a husband who understands all of this.

I walked away from a man I loved. I rarely hear my own footsteps walking away and as it turned out I liked that sound, strong woman sound. I am inspired to continue on my journey of self.

There were quite a few, but probably the most significant and the one I'm still mulling over in my head is getting into my first "relationship" after five years. It didn't last long, but I realized and learned so much about myself while doing it. I also realized that I will not tolerate the selfish, controlling behavior that once governed my past, and let him go at the right time as opposed to letting it fester. It left me with a lot of questions, like how I ended up in a similar situation to my ex, but confident that I could take care of myself and remain strong.

One significant experience was learning that not everyone deserves your energy and effort, it was such a hard realization that you can love someone so much and they can be not in the same place as you for mutual respect. It was hard. It hurt, but I realized at that point there was a meanness in them that I could not accept nor be associated with. I am grateful for the knowing them, and the time I had to spend with them, I honestly learned so much, I was instantly relieved after the culmination of altercation with words, it was over. There was no resentment, only lightness. I am inspired to always do better, and work hard to leave others better than when I found them.

My boss took a leave of absence, and I am his replacement. I knew it was coming, but it happened much sooner than I anticipated. I'm honored. I'm scared. I'm hopeful. I'm looking forward to his return, and hoping that my performance while he's gone will get me a better position than the one I had.

A week after my son turned 13, he got hit by a car. I got a voicemail from someone saying my son had been hurt, but no response when I called back, followed by by a call from a paramedic telling me he was taking my kid to the local trauma hospital. Apparently, my son did not notice an SUV coming when he was crossing the street. He had a good-sized bump on his head and was bleeding a lot, along with some road rash. Followed by "drive carefully..." Ha. I was oddly calm, focusing on getting to the hospital. I remembered how my mom had worried that our absent-minded professor of a kid would get hit by a car when we moved to a bigger city. I remembered thinking that I always expected to end up in the ER with my kid when he was a teen, but I thought it would be for his life-threatening food allergies. When I arrived, there he was, lying on a hospital bed uncontrollably shaking, with a large neck brace and bloody hair and blood pooling under his pillow. His first words were dripping with sarcasm (Me: are you ok? Him: um, yeeeeeeahhhhh), and I was relieved he didn't seem to have a brain injury. We waited a long time for a CT scan and I asked the doc if there were risks in waiting. My kid pipes up with "mom, they're not going to put the kid who has basically nothing wrong with him before the guy with the gunshot wound." The doc said that since he's able to process like that, he wasn't really worried. When he got back from the CT scan and all was OK, the doc wanted our son to walk around a bit before releasing him. I told him to watch out for his IV cord. His reply: Don't worry, I'm always aware of my surroundings. When we did not respond, he asked us why we didn't like his funny joke... Too soon, kid. Too soon. Our son ended up not having any lasting injuries, and hopefully he learned a lesson (don't walk in front of an SUV). The 15 minute ride to the hospital was the longest ride I've had in a long time. I am grateful that our family has most of its health, that my smart boy was OK, and that he will now pay much more attention. It was kind of hard on mom and dad for a few hours... Incidentally, the car accident happened the night of Trump's inauguration. I'm not sure what sort of bad karma led to the universe making sure we remembered the crappiest day of 2017.

I passed my Level 1 Sommeliers certification with the Court of Master Sommeliers! I'm grateful, happy, thrilled that my wife passed hers, too, and feel like I'm beginning to give back to one of my favorite hobbies!

This summer, my sister got married. By this time last year, I would've never guessed that I would be at her wedding in the summer. Even more so, I would've never guessed that I would be able to be happy for her with such a sudden life change. I found myself distant from all of the preparations--mostly because I live in a different town, but also because I wasn't quite sure if I was ready to be happy For her.In the end,It was a conscious decision to give my sister any and all of the joy that I had that day. In the end, it turns out that I always want to be happy for my sister—no matter what we've been through together and separately.

I experienced myself getting more comfortable in a leadership role. Shortly after the high holidays, I facilated a Wise Aging group at my synagogue. Even though I was well trained and well prepared, I was in an anxious sweat through the first couple of meetings. Gradually I became more comfortable, encouraged by the good attendance and active participation from among the group, comforted by the support of our rabbi, and empowered by positive feedback from group members. I grew "wiser" and more confident as the group explored their own aging through a Jewish lens. When I then had the opportunity to organize and facilitate a second series, I felt more pleased and excited than anxious.

Earlier this year I argued my first double-homicide case at the state supreme court level - not trying to proclaim my client's innocence, but trying to have him released after eighty years in prison instead of never. I lost with very little fanfare, and the experience will remain with me forever because of what I learned. For that I am inspired, grateful, and sad. A is a good person who killed two good people. We all wish the world was black-and-white - murderers bad, children good; rapists bad, doctors good; junkies bad, teachers good. It turns out it's simply not true. A is a deeply hurting man. What he did was horrible - children are left without parents, parents without children. There is no question that his actions were evil. He, however, is not. Representing him for two years, seeing his deep remorse transformed to a bright smile when we talk about animals and his family, learning who he is as a person - each visit to the prison showed me that he has the soul of a good man. Good and evil coexist in a tangled knot. Our desire to label, compartmentalize, and vilify people comes from a place of fear. If A is good, and he killed two good people, then where is the line between me and A? I am grateful to be a public defender, and to have had this experience - sitting on a bench by the BP4 site in Split Rock, watching the sun set over Lake Superior, grappling with how to rectify the deep pain of both A and his victims, grappling with how to fearlessly face the deep pain of a world without easy answers. This is what makes me angry about people who simply want to send everyone to prison and throw away the key: the lack of self-awareness, lack of compassion, lack of courage to face our darkest selves as humans and share what we find there. Reality is reality whether we like it or not, and there are no easy answers to pain. My friendship with MK might not survive this year. I'm so angry that he is settling for a life of creature comforts and a nice house and obligations that he has to fulfill, instead of truly, deeply, wildly, intentionally living. That makes me want to give up - that the man I love more than life itself is turning back into a person I've never met. But if this is my darkest self, I'm not going to shy away.

My husband has had some cardiac issues this year - beginning at the end of June. He has been in and out of the ER and admitted to the hospital twice. He has had four cardioversions and a cardiac ablation. We had to cancel some vacation plans in July, which I was sad about since I missed an event in my hometown that I had been looking forward to. I am relieved that we seem to have gotten the issue taken care of and that we live in a big city where excellent doctors and hospitals are very close by. It has made me treasure his company more than I already did and reminds me that life is fragile yet very tough. Even with a pulse of 165, he assures me that he feels "fine". Regardless, I am glad for the support of his family, and my family from a distance.

I think the whole last year has been a significant experience. I moved the previous year to a remote location on a lake. I had been drawn to quieting the noise of life and felt called to more introspection. This past year I have been feeling less called to that and have felt a significant pull to be more engaged in society, work and place. I am inspired by Spirits movement in my life and very grateful for the time I was allowed to listen to my heart

This past year I had the opportunity to watch my daughter turn one along with every milestone that came along in her first year of life. For me, this brought on constant emotions of gratefulness, excitement, awe, exhaustion, depression, feelings of inadequacy, judgment, and anxiety. Another significant experience - I've breastfed now for 14 months, something I didn't want to do at first has defined me as a mother, help shape my attachment to my daughter, and makes me feel incredible what my body was able to do to sustain life.

Trump's election. I'm very resentful that the election was stolen, after I & many others volunteered & donated for Bernie & Hillary. It has given me anxiety, anger & sadness, mostly for others affected by his evil policies & prejudice. I'm glad my family & most friends are working against him too.

This year's election was especially challenging for me. I felt especially certain that at this time, I'd be living in a world with a female president who respected and upheld beliefs and values that are important to me. I was shocked to see this not happen and still feel frustrated constantly at what this means for progress. I think I've had to work hard to temper my disillusionment and pessimism about this lack of progress and the values that a considerable amount of Americans hold. This is the first time I've caught myself thinking that maybe things aren't as good (very vague, I know) as I thought they were. But that seems very much like something my grandparents used to say, and I'm trying to stay young and fresh and excited about the world, but I think the November 2016 election made me a little crotchety and old.

If you would have told me that one day we would no longer speak to each other, I wouldn't have believed you. After all, you loved me like no other has loved me before you... or after you. If you wold have told me that you were going to choose her over me, I wouldn't have believed you. If you would have told me that you wouldn't answer my calls, that I would have to block you on every social media site, that I would cease to know your day-to-day activities, that we would no longer discuss our past or our futures, that we wouldn't laugh, joke, fight, or cry together – I never would have believed you. But now that it has become a reality, I see I didn't need you. I didn't need any of it. I go on. Somedays I still even laugh and joke and fight and cry. All without you. And though the divide between us grows larger and the confidence within me rebuilds, I will never cease to wonder... What are you doing now?

In the past year - a lot of things happened. Let's think - 2017 was year of somewhat poor health. Arguably, the most important thing that happened was that I got admitted to graduate school at Harvard. But it is sad that I would call it the most significant experience - since I am at Harvard now and it doesn't seem like a huge deal. Actually, I would say the most significant experience was the meditation retreat. It was one of the most intense and interesting experiences of my life. Sitting for ten days - the bouts of creativity and suffering - both physical and mental. I already do not remember a lot of it but I know it was the most significant experience of this year.

Alex and I took our first vacation together (without family, etc). Amsterdam and Iceland. It was a really fun time. There were some challenges initially - how to navigate the city, etc. (It still amazes me that 5 years in we still seem to have very frequent friction. I guess it's a product of who we are individually and together.) It was filled with a lot of joy, exploration, enjoyment. We could live in Amsterdam. Iceland - beautiful and strange. Happy to have visited, okay if we don't see it again.

I was laid off. At first I was absolutely elated, like a huge weight was lifted from my chest. It's like the dam in my head broke open and I was flooded with possibilities for the future. I felt like I could finally erase these lines I'd drawn for myself and I could start over. The problem was keeping that mindset.

Major fallout with a coworker. Completely changed my perspective on what perceived friendship is. I totally resent her presence. She is bringing out the worst in me as a person despite my attempts to handle disputes like an adult.

We had a baby! Antonia "Nina" Grace Tembi came into this world on July 7, 2017. It took about seven months for us to get pregnant and I started seeing an acupuncturist for fertility at month seven. Turns out we were already pregnant :) It has been a beautiful experience from pregnancy through birth. Clearly there have been obstacles as well like breastfeeding. That caused five weeks of stress and pain right afte Nina was born and I couldn't wrap my mind around how it was going to get better. I had raw, bloody nipples and supply issues. But around week six things improved dramatically and things have been largely stable and pleasant since. Nina requires constant love and problem solving, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I return back to work in a little over two weeks and I'm excited to be a working mom - what a privilege to have that title. I am inspired by moms in a new way and feel a kinship to them. I also feel inspired to be the best version of myself for my daughter to help her become a productive member of society. Zack and I are truly blessed to have this curly haired little one in our lives.

Between Rosh Hashanah and the secular new year, I applied for and landed a dream job. What started as relief to be finished with my old role -- one in which I had felt "done" for several months prior -- grew into celebration. In time, that bubble burst and self-doubt crept it. The experience have felt like waves of pride and terror, though they have relaxed into more a ripple, with less intense highs and lows. { new normal brings fear and joy }

Like most, the election. I was utterly distraught the day after, like my insides had been scooped out. I discovered that many I used to respect are actually racists and sexists. It made me think of my country in a completely different way. I lost contact with family members over it, and it has still not resolved. I organized a bus to DC for the Womens March, and that was an amazing experience I will never forget. I feel like I lost hope that day, and never got it back. I initially became involved, but got lost in a whirlwind of job/family/anxiety attacks. I feel bad, like I'm not doing enough. But also proud that I did what I did. I want to still explore what I could do in the future that is more "me" and less "politics." Right now, I am focusing on my well being and that was a very, very good choice this year.

Well, not so much significant-rather unexpected was the emergence of my wish to go on traveling. Initially, I started out thinking that the purpose of my traveling was finding a place to settle down. During my time in Uruguay this idea moved into the background. I wish now to continue traveling for a different reason. The act of "being on the road" confronts me inevitably with myself. There is no way of escaping behaviors, habits,qualities and addictions of the person that I am. I am forced to see my fears, my double standards, my insecurity,my inconclusive thinking as well as being enabled to practice more empathy, forgiveness and understanding towards myself. I am able to shed parts that are not helpful to my well-being and to my becoming more true to myself. Although this process oftentimes is not pleasant and I feel disoriented, disconnected to others and a bit depressed I am extremely grateful for the experience.

I went on a women's rejuvenation retreat. Exposed me to new spirituality and self care. Gave me new tools and I now make more time to incorporate these ideas into my daily life. Very grateful for this experience. I surely am inspired! I went with my cousin and we are closer because of that. I also was able to visit with two other cousins which was a bonus. .

I fell in love with an absolutely wonderful person and it totally shifted my priorities. I went from feeling aimless and dejected to proactively improving myself and thinking about my future. I am still surprised when remember how random it was that he and I met at the right time for us both.

Two things come to mind. The first, is the significance experience surrounding that relating to serious health issues and the job respectively. The second is taking on moving on - I think it's most significant, when reflecting. For the former, there is still a surrealness to the hospitalizations, surgery and entire illnesses. The impact and how 'serious' it all was - along with the implications. Both the emotional and physical. My friends that know, know. The nurses, the physicians, etc. in my life. And how fortunate I am am with those not blood related - but fr-amily. How it related to the job is something I'm still reflecting on at this point. I had the opportunity to go out on disability. [To end what was a main ingredient to destroying me. The emotional drain that led to a dangerous physiological impact including emergency heart surgery.] I didn't feel the urge to work and it's 'reward' really further. Yet, I felt 'obligated', expected, even challenged to get back what I was supposed to have - even though I wasn't sure I wanted it! (Explain that one!) For the latter, I've been trying to figure out why I went the route I did - to prove I could? did I see it as a symbol or strength? was it inherited - getting through trauma by surviving? Surviving/thriving? The processing, over the events, I think is having the greatest effect. I've a bit of it all - gratefulness, relief, resentment, inspiration - and am trying to figure it out and the impact of each. Regardless - at this stage I am both determined and open to seeking more. More answers, more paths, more joy. Pushing myself, giving permission and the like to go for the understanding and moving on, over pretending. Hopefully less worry of what 'others' think, process or project.

I had a fall at a baseball game that could have been really bad, but was only pretty bad. A man tripped and took me down the stairs with him. Cement stairs. I landed well, thankfully, it could have been my head or ribs that hit the stair edges instead of my shoulder and leg. I still have pain and some scars from it, but it could have been so much worse. It really made me feel grateful and lucky. It also made me realize how mundane things can be really dangerous if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time.

My mother died this year after 46 years of our tete a tete battling - sometimes voraciously raging- sometimes just nagging at each other's loose threads - and always always with the tension of not quite understanding each other - even if in flashes we desperately may have seemed to want that. I have been numb until this moment of writing. Not in the quintessential grieving way. Rather in the "I am a blank slate", fresh pallet, not knowing what this world will look like when I put down the package of our lifelong strain. Today I feel not relief but calm. I don't feel resentful or angry. It is as if I am holding an empty clear glass bowl waiting to see what liquid substance will color it full. To be able to see the tenor of our voice after her passing.

This past year my youngest son was finally allowed by his father to move in with me and his older brother. It was such a happy life changing event. We had all waited 7 years for this to happen and it was finally here! We are all extremely grateful for this to have happened and it has been a wonderful experience to have him here every day. It has changed my sons demeanor completely and he has returned to a happy confident fun loving teen.

This one's pretty obvious... I graduated from nursing school and got a job. I've been working on this for almost exactly four years. Pretty big deal for me. Am I grateful? Yeah, I'm pretty lucky. Especially as it pertains to having a job at this point. Most of my classmates do not. But I've been working at Regional for several years and all that time there really paid off. I'm definitely relieved. No more school. Ever. Or at least for a while. That grind got old years ago. Am I resentful? I mean, knowing me, if I give anything enough thought I'll probably find something to resent about it. At the moment I'm cool, though. And am I inspired? No. It's more than that. I'm #inspired. I'd like to dedicate this accomplishment to my life's number one inspiration: ME. But you know, in all seriousness, this is a seminal time in my life. Semin is everywhere. All over the place. Never experienced it in such abundance. I wish I had done this 5 years ago, but that wasn't me back then. So I suppose it makes sense to say that I wish it was me back then. But oh well. I worked to get somewhere important, and here I am. Now I get to be middle class by way of doing a job that isn't boring, pointless and soul crushing. In summation, I'm totes stoked on my current sitch and I'm ready to start doing the things I wanna do.

I met my boyfriend, and my world hasn't been quite the same since. I am so grateful. After my husband died, I stopped speaking to God for a long time - not only stopped speaking, I stopped listening. It's not that I stopped believing - I was just so sad and felt so disconnected that there was nothing left to say. And then life happened - I spent a long time on my own growth: personal, professional, physical. I let my attention to the spiritual lapse for a while. But then when I was ready, I started dating again. And I was more the version of myself that I always wanted to be - the one my husband saw inside of me when I hadn't even really seen it in myself - and I met a perfect fit. It felt like God sending me a peace offering.

The election. I still feel demoralized. For a long time, when I saw things dated before election day, I'd think, "that was back when we had hope." The marches afterwards were too little too late. Where was all the outrage before the election that this horrible person was even on the ballot? I'm worried the damage done will be irreversible, for civil rights, for the global environment, for millions of immigrants just trying to make a better life, for our sense of who we are as Americans. Is this the beginning of the end of our way of life?

In April, my job was eliminated when my service line was sold to a for-profit company. I expected to be able to find a job in a reasonably short period of time, but 5 months later, I have had about a dozen 1st interviews and a couple of 2nd interviews, but not been hired. COBRA cost takes 3 wks of my unemployment each month. This is not how I expected or hoped to spend my last 5 years before retirement. We can no longer enjoy eating out, visiting our kids or helping them finance visits to us. Disappointed in the life path diversion, but it has certainly been enlightening. I have learned to write details of what I have done professionally and what I am capable of, to support my applications and cover letters.

It's more the ongoing experience of travelling on my own, finally trying food i didn't eat the last 15 years. I'm grateful for all the support, inspired by some of the people i met and the conversations i had.

There have been a few: 1. Hillary Clinton did not win the election and it destroyed me. I still feel fundamentally broken. 2. I successfully defended my dissertation, but I am super bitter about how badly it went, that someone actually blamed me for electing Trump during it, and just trying not to relive it every couple of days. 3. I moved to Australia with James, and it could not have been at a better time. I feel rejuvenated here, even if I'm under a lot of job-hunting stress and constantly fighting off massive bouts of depression.

In December 2016, my mom accompanied me to Germany via plane. Prior to this trip, she absolutely despised everything German. She had hard feelings towards her mother, my grandmother, for abandoning her in favor of the country which tried to exterminate the global Jewish population. She was extremely claustrophobic, disallowing herself the ability to fly in a plane, board an elevator, or even use an escalator without fear of it breaking and...doing...something. This trip to Germany was huge. I used my leukemia and my mom's endless fear of my death to have her accompany me to visit grandmom. It was a very tough trip for us all I think, but it was critical to turning around our familial relationships for the better. The climax of this trip was our "refugee walk" as my mom calls it, which was actually intentional. My mom was extremely negative about everything and every person throughout the trip. Even the shower could not escape being cursed at for ruining my mother's life and contributing to the regrettable decision to ever go to "this fucking country" [of Germany]. We walked back a somewhat long way from grandmom's apartment, in December, to central Germany, with all of our luggage. I could not have imagined leaving my grandmother behind, knowing any moment, she may die. I was prepared to spend the rest of her living years there, me living in Germany until her death. That did not happen, but it added to the drama of me having to choose between leaving my grandmother behind despite her desperate wishes for us to stay, and or leaving my mother to fly back alone and be once again "abandoned in this fucking miserable country". I ultimately went with her, but not before ensuring that it was absolutely necessary for me to fly back. Our final taxi driver, spoke with my grandmother in German. I could understand that he was questioning why her family would leave her alone for the upcoming New Year holiday. I appreciated his sincerity in fighting for us to remain together, to the point of tears. My mother said it was none of his fucking business and that she chose to live in Germany. I saw that my mom was definitely right on that one point: my grandmom did choose repeatedly to spend her years in Koln, whether alone or with company. This is how she chooses to live, and it is not our responsibility to own up to her decisions. A lot of important things happened directly and indirectly from this trip. My mom began to see some nice things in and about Germany...one by one. She developed a better working relationship with her mother, to the point that she sees how its worth her mother's headaches today, to be able to remember them all tomorrow...and to know that she truly did her best, for the rest of her days. We met a lot of the people in my grandmother's life, spent time with them, and established lifelong relationships with them. My mother realized that she is free to mobilize about the world if she so becomes inclined. She contemplates music tours in the EU now, which is starkly in contrast to her previous attitude. She desires to go back to Germany now for a third time, alone, to go see her mother and play more gigs! It's a change I never, ever even contemplated prior to leukemia and my mom's unhealthy obsession with trying to immortalize me. It's a story of how we truly made the best from what initially seems to be the worst. I cannot be more grateful for all of the changes leukemia has brought into my life, by sheer attitude adjustment and really letting life be free.

Um, got cancer, got cured. Of course made me reflect on basically everything. Most of all made me calm down, not demand quite so much of myself, give myself permission to give in. So weirdly (perhaps) there was quite a lot of relief about getting a three-year month opt-out. A lot of happiness at reconnecting with old friends and bathing in the warmth of their love. And happiness to get through it all.

I was able to attend a summer swim camp in another state. The Head Coach was excellent and I was one of 13 other great assistant coaches. The HC addressed the camp and when finished asked if we (the other coaches) had anything else where I (in a loud voice) said to the group... "On The Count Of Three... Give Me A Clap... 1, 2, 3" And all 173 kids clapped and for a moment in time we were ONE TEAM. It was an amazing feeling, seeing all these random people come together as a team. The next morning after b-fast I did the same request where now all the kids wanted to do the clap. I then added... "On the count of three... give me a YEAH BABY... 1, 2, 3" They all yelled... YEAH BABY. And respectfully started laughing. It was SO FUN! to hear all those kids come together as a united front... becoming something bigger that themselves. We continued to do the clap and YEAH BABY the whole week and the kids kept laughing and looking... Look at this old guy yelling "YEAH BABY"

I don't know where to start. We've lived through so much sorrow and pain that it's felt like our life turned into a parody of a bad soap opera. Yes I'm resentful and angry and still so sad. This year will haunt me for a long time to come, but some days I can grasp hold of a sliver of hope and feel grateful for our blessings again.

I biked across the country this year with a charity organization raising money for MS. It changed my life and taught me really how strong I am both mentally and physically. It also made me never want to have a desk job again! I am so grateful for the tan lines, experience, friends, photos, muscles, and memories.

Returning to Italy for a few days and experiencing the spiritual attraction it has for me. I've visited there several times over the past 25 years and each time the pull is stronger. I find myself wanting to find all the old un-touristy Jewish sites that are off the beaten path; learn about them and study them in-depth. I wake up at night in tears dreaming of being in Italy.

This past October, almost a year ago, we went to Israel as a family. I loved it more than I even expected to. I loved seeing my kids connect to the country in ways that I only think is possible when you are physically there. It reignited my love of Israel, the land and it's people. It made me renewed to continue the conversation, the debate, the education about Israel amongst my peers and my community. Even if we don't agree - and many of us don't - I don't want to become - or watch others become - apathetic. I don't want Israel to become divorced from Judaism just because it's not easy.

My son got a divorce. I feel good that he is happy with his decision and now happier than he has been in a long while, but I am unhappy that now his son gets passed back and forth every week.

Buying a house! Relieved and exhausted.

My shul sold their building and is sharing space with another shul in a neighboring town with the intent to merge. We need a spiritual home and they need our vitality to stay open. Being an officer of the shul and heavily involved in the process, I was available to keep people thinking positively during this emotional and stressful time. We've come through the Torah processional and now the reality is here: we are a larger congregation in a smaller home and not in our home town. I didn't realize I had been keeping my feelings inside, at bay, in order to be available for others. Now I don't know how to deal with not feeling like I'm home.

The election of DT has been absolutely devastating to my anxiety. How did it affect me... Resentful? Yes. Surprised? Unfortunately not. I don't know how to handle a huge swath of humanity that can show up and support a man like this. It's absolutely nightmarish. I honestly don't think the US will recover. But in the shitstorm, it has inspired me to run for office...

The biggest event of the last year has to be the 2016 election. I was devastated. I should have made more calls, knocked on more doors. And the administration has been as awful as predicted. But I have joined with amazing women, and men, in the resistance fighting for equality and justice. I feel like I have more of a purpose now. I feel like I found my true friends. Would I give it up to get rid of this tyrant? Yes. But I'm glad we found each other, I'm glad I'm organizing and fighting. I'm inspired and exhausted and scared and protected.

I think turning thirty has been a big milestone in my life. I say this because it has been a bit of a mental awakening. I have struggled with self doubt all of my life as well as caring about the opinions of others. I feel like I am starting to shed both issues, On one hand I had to leave school and come to terms with finding a way to find a new identity but I've also discovered and returned to my own spiritual path. I care less about having a bunch of people around me and have been really working on cultivating the relationships I have, I think it all comes down to releasing my true self and that certain aspects of my personality and interests are never going to change, I no longer feel like I have to present an image.

I finally changed my legal name. It was one of the most exciting feelings I have ever had and was followed by the crushing disappointment of not getting to do the international UN internship I had been offered because of not being able to get new documentation in time.

This is hard to answer, but I am at the beginning of a big experience right now (moving up to Napa for a new job at a new company).

My boyfriend of the past year and I broke up. While it was happening, I was a fucking mess. My self-esteem was destroyed. I felt unloved & useless & disposable. Now that's been a week since the breakup, I feel grateful for the breakup. I realize there was a lot about the relationship that made me unhappy & unsatisfied. And now that I'm not in it anymore, I think I can go about living my life in a more meaningful way. Or perhaps more reckless. I also find meaning in recklessness.

Just over a year I got married Something that happened this year is my wife became pregnant with a girl. She is going to give birth any day now. I am very grateful that the pregnancy has been going smoothly. The doctors have had a lot of false positive tests that can be scary if you don't look at the actual risk percentages and approach it logically. I am inspired to help our little girl be the best she can be and be an awesome dad. To be honest I am a little blown away.

I guess the most eventful experience in the past year was the election and innauguration of Donald Trump. And, yes, this has affected me so deeply. I have not yet, referred to him as President. He is everything I find both tasteless and horrifying. I cannot believe he has been allowed to continue. I feel that the United States is no longer a democracy and, at times, actually consider leaving. I am 72, however, and unsure if I really start over somewhere else. Meanwhile, I do not watch ANY news. Sometimes, I watch the weather channel. I get little snippets or headlines on social media. That's it. I'm horrified by the rise, or uncovering of the white supramists, the racists and misogynists now operating with confidence in full view. I see cruelty performed with the permission of this administration. Each day a little of the world events trickles in, continuing to shock me. I no longer ask, "How far will it go?" Oh, this all sounds so negative. My world, however, remains sweet and beautiful. I make beautiful quilts, sewing daily. My garden, with pond and waterfall is a delight and a refuge for birds, squirrels, bees and butterflies. As I focus on these things, I am able to keep peace inside and try to porject it to the world.

First in time was getting married. I can't believe how much I can love and be pissed at the same person. Marriage has been wonderful, and it has also been a challenge; everything feels like it is such higher stakes, now that a marriage and a family is on the line.

My son went through the long ordeal of his drug abuse and arrest and finally went to Texas State Jail on April 4, 2017 for 2 years. It has taken an emotional and financial toll on me and he and his family. He has been locked up now 5 1/2 months. He got in a fight that they said he started and did 12 days in solitary confinement and 30 days with no commissary or recreation time, and 0ver 90 days without phone calls. But God has continued to answer prayers even through this seg experience for him. The solitary was cut short by 6 days and Commissary restrictions were cut short by several days. He has been moved to a 5 man cell with no phone privileges and only 2 hours of rec or tv a day, for an additional 90 days. The 90 days is supposed to be up Dec. 2nd and he will be returned to GP. I know this seg has not been easy on my son, but even he admitted it was probably for the good and probably is keeping him out of more trouble. It is definitely teaching him discipline which is a good thing and it is teaching him how to live on $35 every 2 weeks for commissary. He has been reading his bible more and writing letters to me often. I pray he is growing closer to God and that he will seriously rededicate his life to Him. The letters are great and I will be glad to hear his voice again. I pray his wife and sons will go visit him. I pray God will make a way for me to go visit him. Another thing that has happened was me allowing Rick to come back to my house from jail the second time. It was a totally wrong choice...I cannot even say it was a mistake because I knew I shouldn't have. I tried about a month to have a relationship with him but it never happened. After that we started sleeping in different beds. He has been just as horrible this time as he was the first time but it has not been quite as bad because I am not down with my hip now, but it has been hard. He has problems....mental and emotional problems as well as spiritual problems. He chooses to not treat me or his dad decent because he just does not care about anyone, including himself, I think. He does not contribute a penny to help around here and he tries to act like he runs the place. I am counting the days until he will be off parole in January 2018, just 3 1/2 months from now. I finally moved my big living room chair into my bedroom just to avoid him. He still tries to get in my face and irritate me, but things are better since I have a new male friend :} in my life. About 2 nights ago I anointed and prayed over a handkerchief and pinned it to the mattress under the mattress cover at about where his back lies and I am praying for his return to the Lord. He has not bothered me since I did that. Even if he is still here when he returns to God, because I know he will, I still want him to move out asap. The other thing that has happened was me becoming acquainted with Rodney. He was in jail with Wayne at Muleshoe and they became friends partly because he is from Winnsboro and I think that caused some sort of unspoken bond. They did bible studies together and I think Rodney may have helped him through some rough spots. Wayne had me look up legal stuff for Rodney a few times and showed pictures of me and the rest of his family to him. I prayed for him as well. Wayne and Rodney were both released on the same day and they both got back away from God and returned to drugs and in more trouble although in separate places. After they got out and I think after Wayne got arrested again, I looked for Rodney on Facebook and we started sending messages and texts to one another. This started on one of those night that I went and sat in Wal Mart parking lot just to get away from Rick. Somehow Rodney and I went from being acquaintances to being friends in a very short time. He is the one who moved things along and tried sexting with me but I was not comfortable with it and would not do it. He had an outstanding warrant from an old charge from 2015, I think, and knew he was about to get locked back up so I told him to be sure and put my address in his billfold so we could keep in touch. Then he closed his FB page and stopped using his phone but did finally get picked up and put back in jail. I had looked online from time to time that month after he dropped off the radar to see if he had been locked back up and I knew he had been in Odessa jail but had been moved. I just waited because when he was moved I wasn't sure where he was. Finally on July 21, 2017 I got a letter from him. I was not exactly surprised to get the letter but I was totally surprised at the contents of it. Rodney told me how he had been about to go crazy because he could not talk to me or hear from me in any way and how he was worried that I would not care anything about him or want to have anything to do with him anymore. At the end of the letter he said, "I love you." I was totally shocked but pleasantly. He was so understanding about my troubles with Rick and had been such an encouragement to me during the time we were FB friends and actually made me realize that I am a good woman and deserved better. Our conversations caused my self-esteem start to improve. Fast forward to now, just 2 months from the day I got the first letter....we have moved quickly to being a couple. It is crazy because of the age difference and because of the seriousness of his charges, but it happened naturally. We are so compatible and he is so thoughtful. We both believe God has brought us together. We build each other up and HE HAS NEVER ASKED ME FOR MONEY OR ANYTHING other than my letters and my love. He has definitely helped me with my self-esteem even more....he accepts me JUST THE WAY I AM...and he has helped me to finally get out under the control of Rick even though he is still living in my home. Rodney says I have helped him tremendously too and that I am the kind of woman he has searched for all of his adult life. And we are both sexually attracted to the other. We are writing each other a lot and talking on the phone some and we are reading and studying the bible and praying with each other. We both need each other and as odd a couple as we both admit we are, we have become soul mates. He actually proposed marriage to me on Sept. 4th and I said yes. We both admit that this is all crazy but that we know God brought us together. He wants us to have a ministry for God when he gets out. I do love him and I have no doubt that what he feels for me is true pure love as well. We are both praying for and believing for a miracle with his court cases so he can get out soon and we can be together. We are now just taking one day at a time, enjoying one another, and leaving it in God's hands to work everything out for us. I thought I would never have another connection and love with a man like this again and in so many ways he gets me and things are more real with him than my exes. I am happy again and I am so enjoying serving God with him and us both growing in the Lord. An added benefit to this love Rodney and I have found with one another is that finally after so long, I have become motivated to get on a diet and have begun to lose weight. I have been on low card for almost 2 months now. I started it 10 days after receiving that first letter from Rodney. With the help of the Lord I lost 22 pounds the first month and I have lost 6 pounds so far this 2nd month and still have 9 days to go in it. I had gained 30 pounds after my hip replacement in 2016 and I am about 1/2 pound from reaching that 1st goal to get back to the weight I was on the day I had my surgery. My next goal after that will be to lose another 15 pounds and get to 249.2. I have not been below 250 n over 15 years but now I have home of reaching that goal also. After that My next goal will be 230 which is where I was for many years after I had Wayne. My next goal after that is 211 which is how much I weighed when I met Rick 21 years ago. My final goal is a total of 100 pounds lost which will put me at 192.2. I do not want to go much lower than that because I want to keep a little fat and not as much loose skin. But for now I am thankful to God for what I have lost and I and just moving forward one day and one pound at a time. Finally I have hope again to lose the weight and I have hope again of having a good husband and serving God with him and being happy together. It has been hard adjusting to living on $1012 a month but God has continued to provide what I need and some extra from time to time...Thank you, Father for answering my prayers and for prayers you are answering and will answer. In Jesus' name! Amen!

I went on an education-focused, science-and-research-related expedition with an organization known as EarthWatch. I, along with several other teachers studied small breeds of owls in the Chiricahua Mountains in southeast Arizona. We got to hold and interact with them while collecting data. It was so amazing. I learned so much about ecosystems and ecology in general. I learned about owls, habitat, other species, and so much biology with which I was previously unfamiliar, given my chemistry-heat-and-biology-devoid background. I was impacted more than ever by the overwhelming looming presence of global warming. I learned how it is impacting the species we studied, but also how it impacts surrounding cultures of the area and the globe as a whole. I learned a lot about myself and my professional goals and visions. I learned that I'm capable and confident. I'm a good teacher. I have the skills necessary to pursue research in combination with a vision of education to go along with it.

My initial reaction: just one? I lost the friendship of my oldest friend, I built a new apartment for myself, and I ended (for real this time) my relationship with Kate. The outcome of Barry and me is just sad. The whole Hamilton fiasco, and tensions before then as well. Really don't see a remedy or repair-the only thing I can see doing is expressing my gratitude for the history of our friendship. The place I now live in is the result of many months of struggle...contractor driving me crazy, bugging me for money, not finishing on time or anywhere close. All sorts of grief, but now it's done! And the fun part ($$$) begins. Kate and me...yes well. We'll never ever be together again, which is ok. We're now "friends", which means that she's comfortable saying how lucky she is to be able to stay at my house for 3 days, then go off to see greg in Little River. I'm mostly ok with it. As long as I don't get blasted by JoAnna about it any more.

We transitioned to a new company and am very grateful for the experience here. I'm in a new position now and that is inspiring me to strive for more and be better at what I do.

In the past year. Hmm. Actually, the past year has been relatively quiet. The previous 6 years, not so much -- a significant death, a business failed, there was fallout from mental illness and self-medicating. I would say that this is the year where I have thinking about my life differently. I am moving away from setting expectations for how things will and should be, and moving towards working in my present life make decisions that are healthy and happy. It was an experience to figure that out, and I'm grateful that I have that perspective.

A significant experience that happened in the past year would be my parents getting divorced after 47 years of marriage. I felt relieved, in a way, that the tension between them (palpable whenever I -- and probably most people -- am around them) would end, but also concerned that this meant they would each be traveling through the world without a partner, as they continue to age and deal with illness, etc.

Donald Trump being elected President has really changed my state of mind. I am anxious frequently, and feel powerless and sometimes without hope for our community, city, and country. I am shocked and saddened by the anger and hatred that has surfaced since the election. I try to find the good stories, the people who are making a positive difference, while supporting causes such as the environment and racial justice more fervently. This is not where my focus was a year ago.

Met a new friend that had opened my eyes in so many ways. Experienced feelings that i never new even existed. While it has been one of the most exciting experiences in my life it has also caused me to feel at times sad, as it has meant that I've had to mislead the most important person in my life. Do I feel grateful ? Yes so very much in so many ways Resentful, no not at all. I feel blessed that ive been given this opportunity to meet someone who has opened my heart and mind in so many wonderful ways

Our son died by suicide the day before his 40th birthday. We had been planning a trip to surprise him for his birthday the next day... I spoke with him the very morning; I felt his pain and tried help him look at the good in his world. But deep in my heart I had fear that he was in danger. I should have acted differently... I should have said more... I should have told him we were coming... I know that this could have been prevented, and it is my fault. And I will never forgive myself or recover from this. I struggle every. single. day. Our lives are forever altered and diminished.

A significant experience that has happened in the last year is that I was baptized. This is something that has been on my mind for years and I finally did it. It's amazing that we gain the best when we hit our worst. It would have been really easy to have written something negative in this section, but I want to focus on something positive. It affected me by hopefully changing my life path. I have already gone through several seasons since I was baptized, but I hope I stick to the narrow path. It made me feel born again and allowed me to re-evaluate all aspects of my life. There is no way to tell what this will do in my future, but for now, I am saved and I know Jesus loves me.

It's hard to pick just one this year. From the election, to the natural disasters ravaging the country (and the world) to deaths of friends and friends of friends...this year has had so many incredible highs and lows. I think one of the most important, for me, was one that seems small and inconsequential in the scheme of things, but really brought home an essential truth. I have been with the same company for 11 years - and running by department single-handedly for 18 months. When it came time to fill the position above mine, I was 'allowed' to interview - but it was clear to me from the moment I walked in that it was a empty gesture. There hasn't been a single ounce of appreciation for the work I put in. And now I'm expected to bring the person they hired up to speed. If I fail, it will be my fault, if we succeed, it will be to his credit. I'm still processing this - its disheartening and has really hurt my self-esteem. But on the flip side, its made me realize the issue is not with me, but the organization. I'm currently giving myself some time to really think about what I want moving forward before seeking a better place to do it.

Terrified about the trump election, the state of the world, divisiveness and lack of kindness and reason. Learning how to step up and be seen, use my privilege to create noise and change.

Philippe. He taught me to stop allowing people to treat me like shit, and to take back my life and to take back control of my own narrative. I'm bruised, and scarred and scared from the experience, and by everything I see through the lens of that experience, and the trauma triggered by it, along with the trauma it created, but I'm changing my life. I'm taking it back, and claiming it as my own.

My mom had a series of unfortunate events that made her unable to take care of herself. She has had a history of keeping me at arms length. Although there is no doubt she loves me, she just wouldnt let me in. These events made her dependent. She let me in and told me she would never be that way again. Although its too early to know if that will be true, I am thankful for the opportunityt to show her I care.

After years and years and years (25 to be exact) of being an adjunct professor I have finally gotten a full time teaching position at a community college. In the three months I packed up the house I was living in and moved over 1000 miles and started the new job. I spent the last five years living in my mother's house, struggling to make end meet, and living in a very unhealthy environment. I still feel amazed that I have left that place, and that I am now free to be myself completely. I still feel like my heart is going to explode with joy as I start 5778 in a completely new place.

Turning 60 made me realize that there is an expiration date on my life . I decided to make some changes that I have always wanted to do, but kept putting off. This inspired me to live for the day and try to enjoy all life has to offer

I turned 40 and was diagnosed with end stage renal disease this year. I'm on the kidney transplant list. I'm still rather devastated by this. I fear extreme illness, disability, and premature death. I'm not ready for this. On the plus side, I'm not old enough to study Kabbalah.

I became the Executive Director of Bridges of Hope. It reenergized me in my work and has stretched me beyond where I thought I could go.

I married my soulmate. I didn't believe someone like than could exist; I hoped but didn't believe. They showed me how easy relationships can be and how much I had resigned myself to before them. We all get what we feel we deserve. I'm thankful I decided to love myself more and welcome abundance in my life.

I started smoking again. This is intricately tied to my last year's answer and a direct result. Also, Nathan lives here permanently, as does Ted. I don't have much alone time. Being an introvert, alone time is essential for me to recharge my mental and emotional energy. I would like to be ready to quit again.

The election of President Trump has caused me to feel displaced in my own country. His disrespect for the democratic process and his disregard of decency to one another has made me question what our country is all about. It has made me more aware of the inequalities that exist because of race and class. It has also made me a question my resolve to address the challenges of the day.

My father died in June. We weren't close, so I did not expect to be as effected by his death as I was. Losing him has made me view him differently, with more compassion, and I feel regret at not having tried harder to have a relationship with him when he was alive.

My Aunt was diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer and died 2.5 months later. I am grateful for the time spent with her and my cousins. It reminded me that time flies by too quickly. We must mend relationships when we have the opportunity and savor every moment that we have with loved ones and friends

I've had several significant experiences happen this past year--finishing my Masters, being diagnosed with an auto immune disease, getting hired and promoted at my new job, moving once again. There's been a lot! I think it has all made me a stronger, more adaptable person. The lichen sclerosus diagnosis is perhaps the most significant and has affected me the most however. I'm upset about it, scared, and feel a little helpless.

The election result made me sick to my stomach over and over again. More inportantly, it left me paralyzed to decide on where I would put my time and money in making the world a better place. Regretfully, along with general aging, I found myself giving into the adage - history repeats itself. Are we no better than the 5000 + years of history that demonstrate mankind to allow demigods to shape the world the way they wish to feel powerful. I continue to be sickened by the pace of weaponizing, discrimination and increase in weapon power.

Both of our children graduated from their respective schools (Elementary and Middle). Both were given awards, which was surprising, gratifying, and thought provoking for me. I'm grateful their hard work was recognized by their teachers. I was uncomfortable because so many kids who were deserving of being called out in their classes were not but was filled with pride for our children. I try not to be prideful and yet I know how difficult this past school year was for each of them; my son was bullied on a regular basis and my daughter has been battling daily anxiety. Being able to still focus on their work and have the successes they had was huge. And on the other hand I know everyone is dealing with things most of us don't know about and each kid on the stage with them had their own challenges and successes. So I feel a bit guilty that both of our kids were called out and recognized. And yet I know they needed it so I'm grateful their teachers chose to do it.

I continue to be grateful for this love. I thought I understood love and what it meant. I didn't have a clue. On a daily basis, I learn, grow and trust more. I'm finding that I don't always have to be in charge, I don't have to have the answers, I don't always have to look good, or even act like I know what I'm doing. I can be genuine. I can ask questions, doubt myself and say what I want. I have unconditional permission to be exactly who I am.

On December 7th I was diagnosed with Stage 2 Invasive Ductal Carcinoma of the left breast. The diagnosis was surreal - we get thyroid and heart disease in my family...but not CANCER. A big sadness was having to endure treatment while working with an unsupportive team. I wanted to know WHY? Why them? The amazing thing is, other people showed up. So many co-workers were kind and supportive. People raised money. I learned I am loved, really loved. I'm also still very afraid and alone, and afraid I'll always be alone. I've been forced to think a lot about how I'm going to live out the end of my life, where, and with whom. I see no clear picture. So I will focus on what I do know: Today I am a single woman who survived breast cancer. I have a daughter to raise and bills to pay. Today have a job to go to and friends to sit with at lunch. I am blessed.

The wedding made me exhausted. I was ashamed of Norma, of Sarah and Deborah. I felt like they all subtracted from my joy. The election has made me wary of Americans, and so, so sad. I can't believe this is the country I love and thought I was at home in. The new apartment has brought me such joy. I can't believe that we can have thsis life.

I got together with my boyfriend. I'm grateful for that every day.

The election of Donald Fucking Trump as Fucking President of the United States is by far the most significant thing that has impacted literally everything in everyone's life this year. I hate that this asshole has invaded my life. I've gained weight. I drink too much. I've lost friends. I've lost Lori. There are people I avoid. I'm afraid for the future. I'm worried that we may not live to even read these answers next September! He's trying to start a nuclear war with North Korea to prove that he's a big man and to divert attention from the Russia probe. I am so sad that 62 million Americans were taken in by him or thought that he wouldn't do so much harm and it wouldn't matter. How could they have been so blind?!?! It will take decades to repair the damage that he's doing to our planet, our system of government, our healthcare, our relationships, our collective psyche. I hate him. I hate everyone who voted for him. Damn right, I'm resentful! I'm also grateful because I am no fully woke! I am engaged in my representative government every. damn. day. I call my Congressman and Senators, plus several others. I go to rallies and marches. I'm aware of bills and votes that are coming up. I know what's going on. I will never again be complacent. Fuck Donald Fucking Trump and every fucking person who voted for him.

I went to Disneyworld. Usually I put something academic here, and academic things did happen this year. But since I can remember I've wanted to go to Disneyworld, see the castle, do the whole experience. And this year I did, with three close friends, I wonder what it would have been like to do it as a child. It made me think more about the sort of holidays I'd like to take my own children on.

There was significant upheaval at my church. People were treated poorly, conflicts were not handled well and much angst was felt. I made the decision to stop going to my place of worship where I've attended for over 15 years. Depending on the day I am angry, sad, relieved or hopeful for what lies ahead. Probably still more angry and sad about it at this point.

a business partnership ended in an unexpected ted manner, which rattled me for a while ... realized that in most instances of this sort you are basically on your own and that other people will handle things very differently to my own sense of what is correct or in fact normal ... in retrospect i guess the manner in which this partnership was ended was the issue and not the actual dissolution

I'm the last year, I stopped celebrating Christmas. My family had a very hard time with it. My brother was the hardest to deal with. Still is. It has made me resent him, for sure. But, we are slowly trying to work through it. It may not end up perfect, but it'll be positive in the end. I hope

I moved interstate to get a fresh start and put a reset on study and life. And as much I was not a fan of where I moved to in the beginning, I have made incredible friends, found a new perspective on life and happiness and have a newfound excitement about my future.

The first year that I did this 10Q, it led to a breakthrough in my situation that really helped me. Last year, reading through my answers, it felt like I was not giving it my best. So, this year, I really want to give it a go. Perhaps I will have a similar breakthrough. I have to say, that nothing particularly significant comes to mind, in the past year. Which, I know, is more a reflection of my outlook, than it is of a lack of significant events. My mother visited from abroad, my son began day school. At less than 2 years old, he already knows all of the letters and numbers, and has for several months, now. My partner and I get along remarkably well. All of these could be said to be significant, and they are, but nothing stands out as incredibly significant. The thing is, I think on some level I am marshalling internal resources to create and sustain a business. To learn how, not only not to be lazy, but to work very hard. I would like my son and my family not to have to worry about money. I would like to have a reasonable retirement. My strategy so far of waiting for luck to strike has not yet worked, and so working hard will have to do. If there is any significant experience that I have had, it has been that realization.

The most significant experience that has happened in the past year is my coming out to my entire family and social village. I came out to a select group of friends and my brother when I was 23 years old with the intention of eventually coming out in entirety. The plan did not carry out as expected. I re "closeted" myself and fell down into a tunnel of self destruction and disrespect. Moving away from home to Colorado and eventually North Carolina gave me the time to myself that I needed. Upon much self reflection I fell in love with myself. I was able to feel more accepted by myself with much less interest in the concern for acceptance by others. I fell in love! I fell in love with myself, my work and a beautiful blonde hair, blue eyed woman. I came out fully to my entire family and village April 20th, 2017 through a rough, but eye opening letter. I was accepted by most and came into the realization how important I am as a person and what my relationship means to each one of them. I could not be any more grateful. Definitely relieved with the cliche "wait off your shoulders" feeling. Note to self: never lose sight of the beauty within yourself. "You is kind, you is smart, you is important" - The Help

My son's wedding to a perfect match. I am grateful that they have each other to go into the future. I am inspired by their deep commitment and their outlook on life. I am content.

There were major staff cuts in my organisation and I didn't lose my job. It made me feel incredibly lucky and grateful.

Mon amoureuse est partie vivre en Israel. J'ai trouvé ce choix courageux et attrayant. Mais nos situations ne sont pas les mêmes. En tout cas cela a ouvert mes champs du possible...

I decided to stop taking my anxiety medication. I feel relieved and inspired. The first month off the medication was rocky. I was very emotional. It was like a whole new world, I had to learn how to feel certain emotions again. I didn't even realize the extent of the emotional block that the medication had cause me until I stopped taking them. I started feeling a wider arrange of emotions. I noticed that I was crying more easily. I missed crying. Happy crying and sad crying. It is such a great release. After the first month off the medication my moods started to regulate themselves again. And then I felt good for a while until about 6 months after stopping the medication. My anxiety started coming back and it was scaring me. I was having all sorts of self doubt and self sabotaging thoughts. I kept telling myself that I couldn't deal with it and that I should just go back on the medication. However, I'm slowly learning to cope with my anxiety in natural healthy ways. I've cut down my marijuana use A LOT, I'm learning to meditate, got into painting, started making new friends who are positive and supportive, trying to become more fit and eat better, spending more time outside and spending more time with my family. I still find that my anxiety gets the best of me at times. And I'll still have thought of self doubt and self sabotage. But I'm learning to work through these thoughts. I feel that going off the medication has really helped me take my life to the next level. I'm on a new path and I can't wait to see where it leads me. I'm even thinking about going back to school... and that thought used to terrify me.

Wow it's been a year. So many things have happened since this time last year. I have been to new countries, I have met many wonderful people, I have spent time admiring and appreciating nature, and often been so immersed in my present that I don't think anything of other parts of my life. This can be both good and bad. It is wonderful to feel so absorbed with what is happening each day that nothing else matters. Moments feel full, and I am all there. But it is not great for my relationships. My friends and family and partner who might not be there with me. I am neglectful and then I also miss people deeply when I think about it. But that's a bit of a rambly itro eh. Ok, so a significant event would be visiting the Amber fort in Jaipur India. It is a beautiful complex, holds so much history and culture, and the views are magical. It was entrancing for me, and really made me reflect on the vastness of the world, the way humans seek the natural beauties around us and build structures to be able to stare at them.

A significant experience. Well...the entirety of last year was significant. It was my first year out of college, my first year in a new place, my first year figuring out life as a kind-of-sort-of adult. And it was hard. It was really, really hard. For most of the year I was debilitatingly lonely. For a lot of the year, I kept myself numb - that is my coping mechanism after all. So...I have no desire to relive this past year. But I am grateful for it. It brought me to the point where I am now, where I am ready to confront myself, ready to listen to myself, and really listen.

Last year we had our first child. The actual birth was amazing. We used a surrogate who is our amazing hero and watching the birth and cutting the umbilical cord was so emotional. Then the hard part began and every day is a challenge but I wouldn't change it.

I almost fell in love. With someone who seemed genuine, sincere, independent, attractive and completely interested in me. When I discovered he had fabricated a very elaborate deception, possibly to keep me interested whilst he pursued some other options, it made me angry and seriously damaged my ability to trust other people or to believe that could happen later in life. However, because it blossomed and died within three months and before I was totally emotionally committed, at least I feel I escaped with my self-respect intact.

One of my very best friends died very suddenly after battling cancer. I thought he had beaten it and was in remission, but it came back with a vengeance and took his life within a week of being diagnosed with metastatic cancer. I barely had time to say goodbye. I feel so guilty because I feel I should have spent more time with him when I could. I know he loved me dearly and I loved him. But I thought we had more time and other priorities of mine got in the way- so I kept putting off seeing him and talking with him. I learned that life is indeed fleeting - especially as I age. I want to be much better about spending time with the people I love NOW - and not wait.

This past year, I quit my jobs and made a choice to go back to school. I realized that in order to make a bigger impact in my community, city, state, country or even the world, I had to go back to school. I am now again a broke college student but I feel inspired and want to take on the world. Yet at the same time, I feel incredibly out of my comfort zone. I am chasing my dreams and working towards staying motivated.

On July 19, I was arrested while protesting outside my senator’s office in DC. The experience was oddly liberating. It helped me see that I can push past fears and do something terrifying and survive.

My prayers were answered as my baby is back in my life. Not exactly in a positive way but we are both set free now. Our whole lives have changed and I am so thankful. We are both getting counceling, in a new home, new school, new job, new everything. Its hard reconnecting with the almost 5 year separation but God is healing and protecting us. I am relieved, grateful, inspired, ...overwhelmed, excited and there are no words I can use to express what God has and is doing for us.

My husband underwent an aitologeous stem cell transplant in February, to treat his Multiple myeloma. It was a scary and intense time. I am glad that we are past or and that he seems to have almost completely returned to himself. In some ways, it was a wonderful experience, allowing me to see and feel how much a cab depend on our children for help and support. I am grateful to be in the other side of this ordeal. News for our oncologist is very positive and, other than regular monitoring, I hope not to have to spend much energy in this disease

My husband broke his ankle and we were poor. I am grateful for how we learned about the love we have surrounding us. I am resentful for the money we didn't have and the struggles we continue to face because of it. I am inspired at how I am more willing and motivated to just up and help others.

Starting a new job. It's been a carwer change after a 3-year hiaturs from full -time employment. I have landed in a role that is the sweet spot between using muscles from my previous life while still learning a ton more. I now work with an incredible manager, supportive team, and clients who all work well with me. It's the perfect fit. Sometimes I think I'm really lucky, but then I remind myself I paid a whole lot in dues to get here.

Orange Graphix has been completely swamped. So while there was no single event, the experience of growing a business and the outpour of support has been amazing. And exhausting. But also, amazing.

I'm going to be so unoriginal...the election. It's thrown so much of what I thought I knew out the window. It's affected my job, too, as I teach. It's a continual struggle to deal with the repercussions and the commentary of the current administration.

A significant experience in the last year? Ugh, Trump winning the election. I'm definitely not grateful, but it's been eye opening and caused me to think hard about my place in the world.

I accepted the fact that I was suffering from anxiety and depression as a result of assault from a past relationship and harassment from within my community. It was lowest point in my life. I considered leaving my current relationship, and even suicide. I have been working with my doctor, a councillor and my partner to heal. I am grateful for all the support I've received, while at the same time terrified that I may never feel like myself again.

Changing careers. Last year I wrote of my excitement for my new teaching job. After the experience, and grief of losing my job and facing the reality of changing careers from the classroom to non-profit community development has forced me to deal with some real significant issues within myself and how I connect my work with my self-value. Dealing with the fact that I am no longer a teacher, and having to do that while also building a new family has re-awakened depression and anxiety within me. Finding ways to see, understand, and cope with this has forced me to see that there are things about myself that I need to work on that have little to do with outside influences. It is easy to say job loss, or divorce caused depression. The fact is that those stressful events show how vulnerable I am in my own self and they have given me the opportunity to re-imagine and revise the work that I do to help me be the person I want to be and that I am.

Going to Israel with Hirschman's- felt so connected to Israel and would consider giving my life, if I had to, for Israel, not US. Most significant was election and my getting politicized- still not doing enough!

Earning my Yoga Teacher Certification. It... didn't impact me as much as I'd projected. I thought I would find community. I did not. I am grateful... but I don't think the experience was as strong as it could have been. Over a year and it still haunts me. I have something so important to me but I am still frozen and lonely with it. Stuck in a snit, a rut, when I could be doing better for myself. And those around me.

My dog Franklin passed away. The day he passed, it all happened quickly. I didn't have time to say much and I was so devastated that I chose not to stay long after he was gone. I still remember the feeling of kissing his soft little ears. He was my bubba. It has been almost one year and sometimes I cry like it happened last week. I cannot imagine feeling that way about a dog again- but I hope I do, because to have that bond is an immeasurable amount of love. I am so very grateful that Franklin was in my life. He brought joy to so many others, his rescue story turned into lessons for students, and his company to me was warm, cozy, and snuggly. I still can't go down the street to the park that we used to go to, it's as if it is sacred ground. I wish I could have just one more day with him.

The most significant experience that came about what the severing of my best friendship I had for over 25 years. The circumstances which initially precipitated the erosion of this friendship were of mild import. Like most friendships that end abruptly, communication, understanding, care and empathy are all lost at the hands of pride of at least one or both parties. So I told my friend I needed space to think only intending to process the situation over a few weeks so I could articulate my feelings to a mesa member who has the EQ of a project manager but thinks his EQ is that of a Labrador Retriever. As I think back on my life, I have come to know that friendship is one of the most important elements to both happiness as well as hurt. The best of friends are the ones who you know your faults, and imperfections, and accept your sins against them. They have an open mind and heart to accept you; regardless of time. After all, is not time the true measure of friendship? However, time has a cruel since of humor. Those whom we consider friends in their most pure, infallible form, may not be as invested in us as we thought; they may hear but not truly understand you. The best way to examine friendships is through the lens of time. Time does not discriminate with gender, race, logic or emotion. Time’s only judgment is upon itself. This is why it is important to examine all of our friendships on a continual basis. People are influenced by a number of extraneous worldly factors- beauty, money, and power. None of them are eternal. While friendships are important, they are also frail. We must humble ourselves, our minds, and accept that there is much we do not understand. We must also accept the premise that most of these friendships will fail; they do not come from an understanding of humility, and grace. There is inspiration through Jesus who perfected my friendship to God. We can have this perfection if we humble ourselves confess our selfishness and allow the Truth to change us. As for my friend, there is always HOPE in humility to God. I have come to learn that I am not in the business of changing minds and hearts; I am not God. I am just a humble farmer scattering seed.

I got to travel the world a tonne the end of last year And this year I started uni It's been just getting better despite the downfalls I struggled emotionally earlier this year and went to headspace where tauna has helped me heaps-- psychologist And also I started Krav Maga and I love it I am so greatful because I was able to get over my emotional struggles more or less, and feel good -- happy even 😊 Things are looking up and I am so greatful for it

My family and I had a few difficult hurdles to deal with. 1) We had to decide to put our dog, Amber down. She was suffering from a autoimmune skin disease and it was unfair to her to allow her to suffer by continuing to treat what was really, not treatable. It was very difficult for me, for all of us, and for Coco, her sister. I did feel relieved. I felt relieved not to deal with her hairs all over the place, and I felt relieved Coco could be her truest self, which Amber did not allow her to be (it was not Amber's fault). Her death did inspire me to be a better dog owner to Coco and maybe future dogs. It made me realize that we are all dogs have and to be more conscious of their feelings. 2) My gram was in the hospital as she was septic. She survived thank God. It made me realize that family is all we have and nothing else matters. I am very grateful for her and for my family. We work(ed) as a team and continue to do so.

I gave birth to my second daughter, N. I was a little surprised to feel that I am just as broken-open, just as amazed by the whole experience as I was the first time. Being a mother of two children is is both an extraordinary gift and a cause for some ambivalence in me. Sometimes I feel trapped by the scale and intensity of the day-to-day obligation of caring for two kids. And while you know things, having had a child already, N. is so different from her sister, easy in places where her sister was hard, and challenging in places where our older daughter wasn't. I keep trying to pull back and out of it, to remember to enjoy what is a very short time, this baby-hood. Time is so strange as a mother: N. feels as though she's always been here, though five months at any other time is nothing. This, I can affirm: I am changed. This life-giving thing changes you.

My mom died. She passed away in January. It wasn't necessarily unexpected, but it was still very difficult. She was older (86), and in poor health. She was very depressed, and had decided she no longer wanted to live. She experienced a health crisis, and was hospitalized. She began to hemorrhage, and the decision was made by the family to put her in hospice care. Six days later, she passed. A flood of emotions for me, but in the end I can say it has taught me to live each day with purpose and gratitude, because you don't know what will happen, and I know I love my friends and family and they love me.

In July I was matched with a mentor to help me find a new job. For the first time in a long time I feel like I have someone on my side, that I am not dealing with this discouraging and frustrating situation all on my own. It feels like she is invested in my success, which is very rare in my life. I am grateful that she is willing to volunteer her time and energy to me. I tend to get easily discouraged, and her encouragement helps me keep going.

Relieved/resentful: getting fired from Community Solutions. It was a surprise and not a surprise at the same time. I knew I was doing a bad job but I also didn't know how to do a BETTER job. I resent the CS "family" for treating me the way they did, for totally ignoring me after the fact and for delivering me the news OVER the phone while Mary played dumb, which she obviously wasn't. At I'm SOOOOOOO relieved to be out of there, working for the City again (even with the craziness that is Karina...) and in a better environment for me. Grateful/inspired: we move to 25 Indian Road. SO grateful to have found this space, and excited to make it ours. We've grown a lot through the moving process-financials, lawyers, what is going/what is staying, how much I can(t) control myself to nag ben to pack, and I'm excited to see what happens next! (As I write, it's the night before and his office is still a total mess...) And inspired excited bursting with joy over Poppyseed. CAN'T WAIT TO MEET IT!!!!!!!!!

I have three significant experiences from this past year. Personally, the most significant experience was getting engaged to the love of my life, and planning out our wedding, and our lives together. I have never felt so appreciated, loved, or secure at any point in my life before, and I am so profoundly thankful that we found each other and that we're working so hard on ourselves and building our relationship. Professionally, I am starting my 3rd year of teaching. It's the first year that I am teaching a class that I taught the previous year, so I am so much steadier and confident about my teaching, and have to spend a lot less time just getting the basics together, because I can build on what I did last year. I can correct my mistakes, and do it better this year. I feel like I am suddenly a lot more competent as a teacher, and am feeling re-invigorated in my career. Finally, I broke out of my shell a little and volunteered as a cabin counselor at Camp Quest NW, and it has basically changed my life. I am thoroughly inspired by the young people I met, and honored to have been a part of their experience. I also found a band of people who are really my tribe, including some female friends close to my age who I can maintain friendships with because the live nearby. I'm currently making plans with them and extending myself in a way I don't usually do. I think I will go back every year, and be involved in planning the rest of the year as long as I can.

I got married to my girlfriend of three years. I'm now in the longest romantic relationship I've ever had. I'm amazed that I didn't drive her away or leave her over boredom. It's still an adjustment for me. If we can make it together for the next two years or so, then I think we'll stay together for the rest of our lives. I am happy and relieved about that. I don't want to grow old alone.

My yoga teacher training was a powerful growth experience for me. It gave me the mental clarity and peace of mind to understand my desire to have a child and to start to let go of my fear of doing it on my own. It also brought me into a community of people, in yoga and acro yoga, who bring enormous richness to my life. It is a loving, playful, creative group of people. I feel I am become simultaneously stronger and kinder. Strong when I need to be. Strong to protect others. And kinder - always possible to be kinder. Cultivating that like a muscle.

This past year my Grandfather passed away. It was not an easy, quick death. Rather, he lingered, was in pain, and was not coherent at the end. Living 400 miles away from my family made it difficult to cope with such a dramatic loss. Since the age of 13, he was my only grandparent. While he did re-marry when I was 17, she is still alive, the fall out that happened between our families was atrocious. However, it made me realize just how tightly knit the women of my family are. As a, furious, group were are fearsome. We all have different talents, but our collective passion for our family is at once, awe-inspiring and terrifying. The loss of my grandpa has left a whole in my life, that just can't be filled. While, I know, I will be able to live without him, there are certain times when the missing has been quite keen. Losing him made me face one of my worst fears and changed the way I approach life and relationships (of all kinds). I am not eloquent with my words, but not having any grandparents in my life anymore makes me realize what a wealth of information my grandfather was and how much love he always gave to me. His immeasurable, demonstrable, love is what I miss the most.

I successfully completed 10 months of chemotherapy. I am delighted and stronger in many ways as a result. Certainly I am grateful and relieved but surprisingly, I also feel a little upside down. I was diagnosed 18 years ago; cancer has been part of my persona for a very long time. Not like I want to have cancer but who am I without it?

The significant experience was vacationing with our daughter, grandchildren all of her husband's family. We didn't have as much time with the kids as we had hoped, but what we did do was wonderful. The ship was enjoyable and relaxing with too much food. We would have enjoyed different ports than we had seen on our last cruise, but we managed to enjoy that, too. I continue to enjoy cruising more than Stephen. I like unpacking once and being taken from place to place. I would prefer to spend more time in the various stops. I loved doing thing and talking with our daughter & the kids. Living so far away, we miss their experiences and opinions. They are real people now.

I had an email disagreement and I did not over react. I stayed present with the issues and requested a face to face meeting. I was not judgmental and we came to an amazing and mutually gratifying resolution.

I’m happy that I traveled to Israel and that i got out of my comfort zone, that I made real friends and that I enjoyed my time with my brother and that I proved myself that everything is possible and that is necessary to work for it if you want to get it, I have set goals for my life and I’m more decided to make my dreams come true.

In this past year, I have achieved a lot, both academically and athletically, but something I'm especially proud of is being able to win the league with a good friend of mine. Finishing 3rd place overall, and first in league. Other than coming out on top and working really hard for something that I've wanted for a while, this year was just stressful. All I was focused on was succeeding in everything I did.

I collaborated with another mediator in planning and executing a workshop series on having difficult conversations and dialogue. This all came out of the angst of and reactions to the 2016 election. This is the first time I've planned a workshop series collaborative and from scratch. It was well received and folks found it very useful for their lives. I was helping people improve their relationships with others who were important to them. I felt honored, gratified, proud, energized, and inspired to do more.

My dear husband died ten months ago. During the last 11 years of our marriage, he was profoundly handicapped, both mentally and physically. He could not be left alone. I was fortunate to be able to continue working and to be financially able to keep him at home and hire caregivers for him. I am relieved that he went before me, because I made sure he got the care he needed. There is a huge hole in my life, though, a hole that I am filling with as much work as I can do. It's funny, I used to see people with disabled children/spouses/relatives and think what a burden they must carry. It's true, but the other side of it is that you love them. Disability does not change the fundamental essence of the person--they still need love, give love, and inspire love.

Very ill, hospitalized twice due to cardiovascular issues, chronic back and hip pain. Treated for Hep C and cured was very angry toward G-d and anyone unfortunate enough to be near me. I'm surprisingly grateful that I have seemed to have weathered this. Hopefully I will be less reactionary and more mindful.

This year Blake and I got married! People ask me if I feel different and while it's true that our everyday life is the same, it does feel different in other ways. Going through the planning process together was intense, and it brought out the best and worst in our family and community. In the end it just made me all the more grateful to have found a partner willing to engage in the hard work of life together. The wedding itself was a completely magical experience, full of meaning, joy, and so so much love. <3

I am feeling incredibly grateful. I received a life-changing scholarship that will allow me to earn my library degree at the best program in the country free of charge. I feel as if my path has been scattered with rose petals. I will strive to tread with respect and gratitude for the beauty and fragility of this space I have entered.

Donald Trump won the U.S. presidential election. I was distraught. I was disgusted. While it was happening I felt sick to my stomach and could not eat. He has already taken actions that will have lasting negative consequences for a generation or more, like his Supreme Court nomination. I fear for the impact on my family, but mostly for my three year old daughter. It is she and her peers who will bare the brunt of this disaster.

Mi suspensión en Diciembre. Este evento me mantiene culpable y resentido en cierta medida. En esta semana decidí enfrentar el asunto pues todo el año he tenido emociones atoradas que ya me están dañando.

I mean, Donald Trump was elected President of these United States. Which stinks. It made me feel angry and helpless and guilty and resentful, and then, eventually, motivated. I am going to be an activist. I am going to continue to hold the taste in my mouth and keep going in an attempt to make America great for the first time, to make it walk its talk if possible. I am going to fight for my friends and for strangers. I started doing that this year. I'll do more next year.

My kid went off to college. He'd never been away from home, not camp, nothing. There were good reasons to worry but not panic. He did great! Got lost often. Made mistakes, but we talk almost every day, every other day about something substantive - he grew up more in that one year than I'd ever seen. There is even more of him to love. A year later, I'm relieved and proud. Also, I'm very grateful.

Last November, Pam and I went to a conference of the Institute for Southern Jewish Life in Natchez. It was held in the Temple where my some of my ancestors had belonged. I saw a picture of one of them (in a Purim costume) on the wall. He looked like me. The feelings I discovered at conference (which included a Shabbat service inspired to reconnect with the Judaism that I was born into, but not raised in. We took an Introduction to Judaism course, and today I attended Rosh Hashanah services for the very first time.

This year, I had to get a mastectomy and hysterectomy. I am so grateful that although I have BRCA2 gene that I was given the opportunity to prevent cancer. Not many get that choice. I feel fortunate that I did and that's what carried me through the recovery.

My daughter took me to Ireland. She just wanted for us to go before it was impossible to go for many reasons. I am grateful for a loving and caring child. She is gracious and kind and I adore her.

Let's face the facts, there are two significant events: 1. My daughter has a strange semi undiagnosed lump (or lumps) on her neck. Dealing with this means lots of doctors visits, scary medical procedures and gratitude. As of right now, we have every reason to believe she will be fine, this I am incredibly grateful that she's not actually sick. I am also so appreciative of the kind doctors who have helped. Not to mention the amazing nurses and awesome day of hospital visit people. We are also soooooo lucky that medical bills are not an issue and we can just focus on getting the care she need. Watching her wake up from the anesthesia was a wonderful moment. So we still have the take your meds battle, but I am relieved that all will be well. 2. My first first author paper was published!! It was a huge lift and I am so glad it all worked out.

Our director retired. As time went on, our office became so beaten down. Now she's gone. We can laugh, we can be ourselves, other offices want to work with us again. I am all the emotions listed above. Grateful her reign has ended. Relieved that we don't have to pretend anymore.resentful.of the fact that she betrayed our tryst, ducked the life out of us, manipulated us, and lied to us. People left because of her. Inspired now because I am tedpectrd, I can speak up and not be slapped (figuatuvely) all feel the same. I am applying for a higher position, as I feel free to be me! Confident.

Election of donald trump! Resentful, and scared to death that he is so stupid

Within ten days both my wife's and my son's cars were totaled. I am grateful that neither of them were at all hurt. I am disappointed with the insurance settlements and lateness of their payments, but relieved that the incidents only hurt us financially and not physically.

I finished the second draft of my novel. I'm grateful to have finished it; I'm disappointed that there's so much work left to do! But I am going to keep working on it.

Active in caring for my Mother. I'm glad for the extra time to enjoy and spoil her.

I met someone, and dated long-distance for a few months. It turned out to not be a good relationship. I was very disappointed and sad when it didn't turn out to be good, but at the same time I was equipped with experience and a support network that helped me get through the sadness much easier and faster than in the past.

The divorce process and how I went to "divorce school" in LA County and put in over 100 hours of work. I actually feel all four emotions--grateful, definitely relieved, and inspired, but also resentful...because, well, I'm human. I resented him for putting me through this and I resented myself for choosing to marry him. I'm in the process of fully letting go of the resent, which isn't easy, but it's completely necessary so I can experience total freedom from him. I made the decision to unfollow him on all social media and not contact him for the next year. I did enough work trying to *not* upset him during the divorce process, and I had to constantly balance my compassion for him while never backing down from what I wanted. And now that he is GONE from LA, I will not give him anymore of my emotional real estate. Not my time, not my energy, not my emotions. I don't wish him harm. I just don't want him in my life anymore. I want to fully SHED him from my life. And I must say, it feels truly empowering to set these new boundaries and finally begin to live my life on my own terms.

I made Manager at work. I have really learned from being a supervisor how to communicate and not micro-manage. I feel the challanges I have met have helped me grow and I actuallly look forward to being even more of an example and leader for my team.

The disastrous election. I've never been very politically active, but when the results of that presidential election unfolded, I felt an overwhelming sense of near-hopelessness. The *minute* I heard about the Women's March the day after inauguration day, I KNEW I was going. And I did -- didn't know a soul with me, but that was fine -- I made a lot of new friends! The whole experience was a highlight of my life. I felt a kinship with everyone there, and a sense of empowerment was in the air. There was NO violence whatsoever; folks were kind and helpful. I've remained more politically active since, as well. I've attended some local meetings, I've called my congressmen -- something I have never really done much. So even in light of the disaster currently residing in our White House, I have hope that the next elections will have a different outcome. And that bigotry, racism, misogyny, and "white supremacy" will soon become a thing of the past.

In August, we traveled to Oregon to see the total solar eclipse. Austin, Sagan, Rory, Pitter, Gran, Josh, and I were all in Salem for the event, and it was the coolersf, weirdest, most memorable thing of the year. I'm so glad we got to see it together.

This year has been all about my baby. Last year was all about being pregnant. Together they make up such a significant portion of my memory that I'm overwhelmed sometimes. I've never had such fullness in my heart before or such fear. Before baby, I felt this emptiness. This loneliness that I recognized as the space where my mom used to be. That space is so full now. I'm grateful to my mother this year bc I had an idea of how much she loved me in her life, but I had no real way to comprehend it. This year I found out how much my mom loved me and it inspires me to love my baby even more.

I think I've started hitting dark, emotional rock bottoms, where my alcoholism and drug abuse really tangibly ruin things in my life. Whether that was breaking up with Emma in what was probably the worst weekend of my life, or fucking up on assignments really clearly because I chose to get drunk, or spending a month blasted on heroin, or shitting on the floor (twice, on two separate occasions), it's definitely impossible for me to pretend that I'm just a casual user–even to people who don't know about addiction. I feel empty, hollow, and weak, though, because I don't think that I'll really find a way out of this.

I decided to leave the Progressive congregation I had attended for 9 years here in Budapest, Hungary. In fact, I had been contemplating the decision for years because, as a lay leader and a person, I had had conflicts with the rabbi. Finally, a relatively minor problem affecting a friend of mine tipped the scale. I wrote an official letter of resignation to the board, and a short frank letter to the rabbi in which I told her how I see her and what I think the problem is. In the course of that, I got even more convinced of how very much I dislike hypocrites and pretentious people. I left and went to a more traditional congregation because I had friends there. Naturally, I was afraid. But I managed to more or less find my place in the new congregation... Also, there's the advantage that I have since been learning a few things of Judaism outside the Progressive movement. I'm still committed to Reform because of its egalitarianism and other things, though. Another thing is that, over the past few months, I developed a close relationship with a gay man - not for the first time - and, in the course of this, I received an even clearer picture of myself and of what kind of relationships I tend to prefer; always with people who reject intimacy. I'm now trying hard to accept and create a larger distance between us, to severe myself from him as a sole emotional resource. I am also planning to make an effort to do this on a more general level, too, with the help of my therapist. To tell the truth, at the moment, I am completely at a loss as to how to do this thing which is downright impossible to me. And it is so frightening I don't like to think about it, in fact, I don't know what to think. I don't know any other way to "operate" as a person, I am disinterested in relationships that are not like that. I don't have significant experiences any more, I have the feeling that everything goes round and round in the same circle. It's bitter and desperate. (Now it occurs to me that it was nice to be in Vienna with him. But it was with him, too.)

We moved out of Coventry and to Saratoga Springs, NY. I lived in many different places and states, but this is the first time I felt "right" here...at home...belonging. I have a great view of Saratoga Lake, found some money making opportunities and learned that no matter how far down you go, you can always come back up!

Many of the big changes and events this year centered around my daughters. My older daughter had her bat mitzvah last November and it was an amazing, memorable occasion. Both of my daughters changed schools this year (middle school, high school), and the time changes allowed me to go back to work full-time. It's been a year filled with changes and new experiences, and change can be hard sometimes. But I'm so proud of the young women that my children are turning into and the independence they're achieving. Sometimes I long for the days when they were little, but I love talking and learning with these new young adults.

the biggest: my mother's steep decline and passing in the nursing home (at age 93) where she didn't want to be. still trying to reconcile the guilt, the relief, and the new family dynamic with my brothers now that the holidays are on the horizon. it will be the first thanksgiving and christmas that have not been hijacked by family obligation.

Sam went off to college this fall. I am so proud of all he has accomplished so far and excited to watch him grow and explore his newly found independence.

I met a guy and have started a relationship. We live in different cities and so it's a slow build. It is such a mix of emotions, from; excitement and butterflies, comfort and companionship, to; nervousness and anxiety, frustration and fear. Some days I feel that I would rather be single again than feel the way I do being with him. Other days I feel that I owe it to myself to make it work.

My significant other and I decided to not have children. We have made a plan to inform his parents who are very hopeful and inquire often about grandchildren. We also discussed steps for permanent nonhormonal birth control. I am EXTREMELY grateful to my significant other for being open to discussing alternative options other than hormonal birth control. I am also very grateful and relieved that we are on the same page about the decision in the first place. This was not an easy decision by any means.

I had cancer, and now I don't. A second "scare" and biopsy in June. Now I get to take hormones-yes! I have grown my private practice into something ! The agency work is declining and transyouth are now significant IN MY WORK-YEA!

Well, it's gotta be the election of Donald Trump. I'm dismayed that this can happen in a modern era and scared for the future of our country and the world. I'm also honestly shutting myself off from the news recently. I feel like I need to care for myself, my husband, my kids, and my family in general. I want to make a difference in the ways that I can.

Going down to Louisiana after Peter died made me think deeply about loss and connection and the way that we know each other and don't know each other. I felt taken out of my life and set into a surreal place with people I didn't know and had to depend on. I felt deep deep grief for the way that I had let myself do less than I could have. I wish I had known him better for the good things--his work and his friends, but also for the deeply disfunctional aspects of his life. I wish I could have helped him. I feel deep regret and also a deeper understanding of how there is no future in which we will work out our salvation, the moment is now, as James Baldwin said.

One significant experience was seeing Donald Trump elected president. The last 9 months have been scary to say the least. Huge doses of nationalism and barely veiled racism. I worry for the future...this president has opened the doors for the hateful, racist, greedy, selfish, ignorant populations of the US to come into the mainstream. We are heading down a dark path. I am left frightened. Another significant experience was finally taking a canoe trip down one of the MN water trails with my boy. Nothing life changing, but significant none the less as we will both remember it fondly.

Almost a year ago, I decided to resign from the first school I taught at. It was so scary and I still shiver when I cross people on the street who look like my superiors, but I am so glad I did it. I ended up on a school where I felt appreciated and supported. I stopped having regular panic attacks and enjoyed going to work. When I add the school I work at right now to the comparison, where even class management feels easy, I see that I have grown so much since last year.

Significant - Elle's health and move to CT. The daily issues with pain and emotional well being or lack thereof. Her panic attack while I was out of town, frantic phone calls from a hotel room (me) while she took herself to the ER. The gracious and loving empathy and willingness to take her in shown by my college roommate at a stressful time in her life. And the ultimate decision by my daughter to quit her job, come home and seek exceptional medical care. She was right about her body after 14 months of doctors telling her nothing was wrong - surgery confirmed that and we are all so grateful and relieved.

I went to Europe in August. I borrowed money to make it happen, and I was completely present while there. I didn't worry about money, or school, or the future. I just walked streets, ate good food, slept in hotels and hostels, drank coffee and practiced speaking other languages. I got to hang out with Marine's family and friends. I got to play with babies. I got to be useful and helpful and I got to dance the night away with a longtime friend who I adore and respect so deeply. I took care of myself. I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity, and I am trying to ride the high of that experience as long as I can.

Deterioration of spouses health over past year. Has obviously had a negative effect on both our lives and I hate to admit feeling somewhat resentful.

I started out thinking that I didn't have anything significant in the past year, but I have- I started seeing a therapist. She has been an amazing force for good in my life. She has helped me figure out why I feel certain ways about things. She has helped me find ways to resolve those feelings. I'm relieved in a way. I look forward to seeing her. But it's also hard. She has challenged me to change.

It has to be the combination of Trump being elected and the dog's dinner that the Tories are making of BREXIT. I'm usually a glass half full kind of person but it's hard to see how things can get better in the short term and the long term damage is unmeasurable. World War III anyone?

I went to VONA! I didn't expect it to change me as profoundly as it did, and now I have a renewed sense of wanting to write more, write better, and write more freely. I didn't realize I needed love in the ways that it gave me, and I didn't realize how much of myself I had to hide to be able to survive every day.

Beginning on New Year's Day 2017, I set new boundaries in my relationships, both with individuals and with institutions or organizations that had left me feeling bullied or manipulated and used. I had become aware that in many relationships, I was being told, not asked, sometimes bullied, sometimes pushed around, and often interrupted or dismissed while still expected to serve and submit. I realized that in my conversations with friends and acquaintances, I was often asked (i.e. told) to "do" something, but rarely asked how I "am." I was seen as a valuable and useful resource, but not really seen. So, on New Year's Day, I created new boundaries and distance between myself and the people or organizations treating me carelessly. I went away for a spa weekend by myself, I took long walks and listened to audio books, I enjoyed bubble baths, I nurtured relationships with supportive friends and family, I re-evaluated the organizations that have historically received my loyalty and support in terms of time and money, I curled up on the couch to read good books, I cooked delicious meals, I hosted friends and family in my home, I worked to make my space beautiful and comforting, and I silently and deliberately said 'no' to many people and things. I held my ground. I spent more time alone. I spent more time in silence. The results have been amazing. Once again, I can hear the only two voices that matter - my voice and God's voice. I didn't realize how many voices were drowning out His voice and mine until I silenced the negative voices by holding my ground and saying 'no.' "Ahhh, Peace. Spirit. Calm. Safety. Direction. Growth. Love. Hello, old friends. I've missed you." I created space in my life for what my soul really needs. I am relieved. I am grateful. I am inspired. I am whole.

Casting off the house in WA was an ordeal! I can see how I changed throughout the year in response to it. First miserable and unbelieving, bombastic, even. Then increased desperation as months went by. Then betrayed as it became clear my own rental manager was in on it. It was frightening to close down the bank account July first, thought I would arrested. Then it was months of handling creditors calls and mail. The steps were outrageous, the place is sold as is, then the lender makes requirements the day they should be signing! Was that three or four buyer offers before it stuck? Maybe I finally developed a bit of a thicker skin. This would be a good outcome. Maybe some confidence from simply not losing the house...it was that close. That seems like relief more than confidence. So, lessons? MUST keep cash aside if there is a rental involved. Can't be hand to mouth on the big items. Did I have the right agent? She was pretty mild, as she is. Would want more of fighter, think. So our huge plan to move to SC is rolling along. The next month wil tell the tale!

I'm still trying to rollerskate and improve my skills enough to make the roller derby team. It has been a really rough year. I've seen many new bootcampers join and pass to fresh meat. A few have even passed to the team. It gets both heart-breaking and inspiring depending on my mood. It doesn't matter that everyone is "so impressed" that I've stuck with it this long. I don't think they understand just how horrible I am at it, and how much of a derby turtle I truly am. I will have been trying for two years in four days. I have not yet passed a single skill. Not one! When I went to Rollercon I was really surprised at how many people admit to starting out as or feeling like turtles as well. Some of the self-proclaimed turtles aren't really turtles, they passed just fine, and that bit bothers me. Quite a lot! Maybe it took them six months, but when I think of a turtle, I think of people like myself who struggle with EVERY skill. Non-stop. Those people without a chance when they begin. I'm tired of feeling like I'm never enough.

This experience actually happened just a couple of days ago. My wife was at my daughter-in-law's house overnight since you would do some early morning childcare. I woke in the middle of the night to a sound in the lower level. The sound repeated. I was as sure as I could be that somebody was actually in my house. Adrenaline surged my heart felt for a moment like it would beat out of my chest. I found my pistol, put the clip in and chambered around. I slowed my breathing per my past training. What went through my mind is I was prepared to potentially kill someone. While it turned out that no one was there, that thought disturbed me through the night although I would not have changed that thought. I only thought retrospectively about the fact that I might be killed or injured myself. I realized that I'd had an encounter with my dark side. I believe we all have a dark side, is buried through a number of layers, largely are humanity. It is something that I believe rest inside all of us in a very deep place within. Days later, I would've done the same thing. I would not have waited to be a helpless victim. If my wife had been there, absolutely, without any doubt I would've taken the same action.

Nine months ago I realized I was an addict. The addiction isn't important, but it has taken me on a journey of self discovery and self acceptance. There are some days I wish I never started this journey. I've had tears, frustration, anger, sorrow, self-doubt. But I've also had celebrations, connections, self-realization. Today I celebrate 152 days of sobriety. I had to accept my faults in order to grow.

Met a very kind, very kind physician who I admire and respect very much. He helped me figure out a solution for my stage fright, which has become worse over the last few years; I am very grateful for him and for his genuine caring. I continue to find ways to express my creativity through theater - I am very grateful for this!

So many this year, still learning my new role as wife, the affects is it is getting better. I'm grateful sometimes resentful. I am getting this new role as application administrator. I feel inspired and grateful for the growth. I have been frustrated and just crazy and the amount of work. I am getting or wrapping my head around my mama decline in health and vitality. I am sadden and selfish as I want her to live forever. Grateful that God keeps blessing us with each day I have with her.

Travelling to Morrocco with my 23 year old son who is now 2 years sober. It had it's challenging moments, but mostly I loved spending time together again and seeing him reconnect with our family and others.

I got help to get better after a traumatic experience. Not all the people arround me understood what was happening, some of them thoght I was exagerating things, that the pain and anxiety were too much compared to the experience I was describing. Truth be told, I never really told anyone the whole truth, but I did ask for help... and so I ended up telling bits and pieces to different people... a little to this friend, some to my therapist, a larger portion to my SO... I realized that what I was feeling... that overwhelming collection of helplessness, frustration, self-hatred, and some other extras... what I was feeling was just too much for me (or anyone) to handle. So I asked for help. One friend heard about the first thing on my list, my therapist about the next two, another friend helped me with number four, and my SO heard about most, but focused on supporting me through the process of healing myself and learning to live again, rather than actively working things out with me. All of them helped me, all of them became a part in the foundations of my newly found sense of self... but none of that would have been possible if I hadn't asked for help.

My son graduated from college. I am certainly grateful! He is happily ensconced in a new job that he loves. He needs a little more support before he's fully launched, but I feel like he is well on his way.

Start working in a great place.

Perhaps the most significant experience of the past year has been the presidential election, inauguration, and administration. It has changed my family, hurt millions of people, and caused me serious anxiety. I am angry, defeated, and often feel hopeless. I am always hungry to find my place in the revolution. And we will rebel.

The most significant experience in this past year happened just recently. It was when I learned to stand my ground and not concede to manipulation and intimidation through sophisticated words. Without giving too much away, I found myself in a situation that made me feel morally conflicted, but ultimately, I recognized that I was the one being cheated in the end and that in our professional lives, business is business and I have to stop taking things so personally and being so weak. With the help of many loved ones, many of whom came to my aid in surprise, I was able to strongarm myself with positive thoughts to get through these trying times and I finally have closure to enjoy the next chapter. I'm still trying to remedy my feelings of fear and doubt but I know all of that will come in due time.

Well, I got married, so that's a biggie. Wow. I got married. Weird to say. I both knew and didn't know this time last year that'd be happening. I am certainly grateful, certainly relieved. The wedding itself was... literally everything I could have dreamed. They say most people don't remember theirs, but I feel like I remember everything, and Michael's happiness that night was... I got married. A new chapter started. An identity changed. So there's that.

I opened a coffeeshop with a partner. Within 6 months our partnership failed. I regret not trying harder to make it work. I am also relieved of the stress the situation was causing and grateful I have been able to manage and grow the business on my own. I am inspired to continue building a community space.

The most significant experience I had in the last year was the depressive episodes with both of my children. Both of them were struggling at the same time, and it was very tough on me. At the time, I was anxious and confused about what to do. Today, I am very grateful that both of them are doing much better. Daniel is now working as a teacher. Rachel has weaned herself off of almost all her medications for her headaches and anxiety, and is now pregnant and due in March. Speaking of pregnancy, that is another big experience that has impacted me. Rachel and Felipe told us she was pregnant, and I am very excited about being a grandparent. I imagine it will be one of life's great joys for me. A third signficant experience for me was our name change at Joyn. The event was super cool as we built 100 prosthetic hands for land mine victims around the world. The new name better reflects who we are and our passion about changing the way America thinks about money. The presentation where I spoke to 300+ individuals was a ton of fun, and gave me the confidence about speaking to larger groups in the future.

This year we welcomed another baby to our family. I always wanted two children but when it came time to consider a second child I spent a long time considering whether it was really a good idea. Raising a small child has taken such a tole on our lives and as he has gotten older we have seen the light at the end of the tunnel. No we have a six week old and we are back in survival mode. I feel very happy that I have completed the pregnancy which was difficult at times and that I have a healthy baby. But I oscillate between wishing for him to grow up so we can have some of our sanity back and wanting to enjoy this last chance to have a baby.

We decided to pack up and move all the way across the state. All in the span of about two months - including working, finding new jobs, putting our house on the market, buying, and selling. The initial talks started in May, I interviewed for the new job in June, house went on the market July 6, and we were settled in our new house on August 27. It was a whirlwind. I'm glad we chose to move because we were barely surviving where we were living and now we can breathe easier, both financially and emotionally.

My dad died this past April, early April. A part of me feels relief that he was no longer in pain and prolonging the inevitable ... another part is still in mourning. I find it most difficult at the most random times. Such as when the school year started and I came to realize that this was a time of year when I'd talk to him most often as a touchstone. He played a bigger role in my life than I'd realized. I'm grateful to have had him for the time I did. It's living in the time after that I'm still adjusting to.

Getting promoted. I am grateful and proud of myself.

I suffered vertigo for a week. I felt totally out of sorts, out of control. It seemed frightening that something like that could happen, and I sometimes still feel that I have remnants. It makes me feel vulnerable, when normally you feel protected and in control. It was frightening and makes me appreciate life more.

This year my wife and I celebrated our 5 yr wedding anniversary. We decided to celebrate a few months earlier by summiting Mt Shasta. Closer to our actual anniversary we went out to dinner and I need to clear my conscious on a few things that were bugging me. I realized that we (my wife and I) weren't talking as much. As a family we were strong but as a couple, I thought we were struggling. I decided to talk to her about this during dinner which probably wasn't the best time given we had a few drinks already but the conversation was necessary. She responded well and acknowledged the challenges that we were facing. Since then, we've had more conversations and dedicated more time to each other. I'm happy :)

We got pregnant! I am so grateful, excited, and cautiously optimistic. At time of writing this answer, eight weeks.

Speaking at the memorial service for two friends within a five day period. The death of two close friends, just a year after we lost another, has made me think more about mortality and loss than I have in a long time. I was grateful to have the opportunity to participate, but resentful that these friends are gone way too soon. The only relief is that all three fought painful battles with cancer and that they are now at peace... It's an almost worn out cliche', but, truly, make every day count and never sweat the small stuff.

My uncle died, but it was two weeks before anyone knew. Important to maintain connections and live your true self.

I traveled outside of the U.S. for the first time, to London and Paris. I have a love / hate relationship with travel right now. While I love seeing new things, I hate the hassle of getting there, preparing, etc. However, in balance, I'm very happy I made the trip. I think we tried to see everything in one trip, and were exhausted because of it. Hopefully I'll get back to both places, and now will have seen the far-flung sites. I'm grateful I went, and inspired to go again, though this time to spend more time relaxing.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year is that I graduated from USC! There are so many feelings around this. I am grateful, relieved, resentful, inspired, and so much more. I am so grateful I got to attend and graduate from my dream school. I can't believe I did it. I couldn't have done it without the help of so many people- especially my mom. My procrastination never improved unfortunately- I'm shocked that with that I was still able to graduate cum laude haha. But really; I remember touring USC after my junior year of high school and being angry with my mom that she was making me look there- I would NEVER get in, it was a waste of time, and I remember being so explicit with her that we were wasting a full day in CA by touring the school. I said I'd look but not apply- and then after touring it, they sold me. I just HAD to apply. But it's weird because I REALLY didn't think I'd get in...so now looking back, what made me apply anyway? I am SO proud of myself for having the confidence to apply anyway, even if that meant being rejected. So many people don't apply cause they think they'll have no shot. What if that was me? My life would be so different I can't even comprehend. Everything would be different. Clearly this was meant to happen, in God's plan. USC is so amazing and it never lost it's amazingness on me. I graduated from the #1 film school in the entire world. Even if I don't want to do film, I'll always cherish my degree as I have learned so much and don't regret any minute of it. I am proud of myself for taking advantage of as many opportunities as I could have. The many internships I had, the set time, joining a professional fraternity and having an AMAZING pledging experience, being an RA for 2 years, living off campus for one year, being in student government, being a Wellness Advocate, going to meetings with the Deans to make the school a better place, football games and tailgating, going to events. I took advantage of so much more than I did in high school. I am also relieved I graduated. I am relieved I'm done with papers (though I want to go back to school haha). I am resentful of how much school I missed. But I'm not resentful of my illness because it shaped me. I accept it- it really has made me the person I am and I'm not resentful of that. But I'm resentful of not feeling well enough to do more readings, to pay attention more in class. I am so inspired by having graduated- I am so inspired to keep learning- to keep questioning. I have some of the most amazing memories from college, of Professor Steve Ross telling me to question everything, of my film and buddhism class, of DKA, of RA training. I am left with some really special friends- I am a better person. I can't believe it's over, but I believe the best is yet to come. I will live in the present.

This January, my wife and I attended the Women's March in DC. It was incredible -- but I find myself struggling now, so many months later, to feel again that hope and elation that uplifted me then. It seems silly to worry about war or the decline of our nation, the desctruction of our future .. But so many accounts of such time periods include recollections along the lines of "we had no idea that everything was changing."

My semester at Watson in Boulder was a significant experience. The social pressure of living and learning in close quarters with 20 people was difficult to manage. I felt like I had to balance my desire to be understood and liked with doing what I really wanted and staying true to myself. In the end I think I was able to do both, and the relationships I developed and my overall experience benefited tremendously. I am now even more aware that it's not likely that I'll walk into a room and have people immediately get me, but that I still need to stick to doing my thing and the friendships will come.

The Trump election terrifies me. Maybe this time next year things will be better. Maybe they will be worse. But one way or another, because of Trump I'll have no insurance in 2018--and that's not a good position for a Marfan sufferer with Hashimoto's to be in. I just hope we're not at war with North Korea.

Probably the most significant thing for me to have happen is Kaylee breaking up with me and ending our relationship. It happened on or about November 14th of 2016. We had bought a ring, we were making plans to live in SLC, I had even transferred to SLC, and then she pumped the breaks and ended it all. I was distraught for several weeks as I thought it would have been a great. I remember walking around Price in the cold, on the verge of tears, and writing depressing poetry. Coming off my other relationships and my doubts about being able to love someone, this relationship proved that I could and it hurt my heart. Probably the worst part of this entire saga was that I returned to live with my parents due to my transfer to the SLC office. I was so depressed that I was an absolute mess. I gained 20+lbs, I didn't socially interact with other people, and I was depressed and sometimes a bit suicidal. It was hard and it has still been hard over the last little while. Sometime has offered some perspective and I realize that I was making a mistake. I really liked Kaylee and I thought she was amazing but I think I may have been too close to her to see some of the problems such as her own need to create problems and also drama. Had we stuck it out, I'm not sure how long it would lasted. So I've decided that the heart break I did suffer for a few weeks was better than the devastation that would have come from a divorce. The best thing I learned from this experience is that I can love and I can dedicated myself to a partner which is huge for me coming off other issues which have come up in my life. I look forward to my next healthy and durable relationship.

This happened a little over a year ago, but I started my first full-time job after graduate school. At the beginning I felt extremely relieved, and today I still feel very fortunate to have a job in my field where I am pushed to learn new skills and am surrounded by supportive coworkers. Still, I've just had my 1-year anniversary and I'm wondering what people do once they enter the full-time world. How long do you stay at one job? When do you know it's time to leave? I'm not ready for that yet but my boss rightfully pushes me to think about next career moves. I feel scared to lose the sense of stability and familiarity that I've only recently gained, but also a little anxious for something new.

I have allowed myself to truly fall in love with someone this past year. Up until now, when in intimate relationships I always kept one foot on the ground. I never "fully" committed my heart because I was so used to the idea of the person bailing or it not working out. In letting go of the fear of rejection or failure in my present relationship I have gained a great sense of peace, calm, joy. I live in the moment more and feel more secure with giving my love to another person.

We finally moved back to New Mexico after nearly a decade in Los Angeles. It was really hard to move away from such a great job and friends. My heart wasn't 100% in the decision and I became depressed about 6 months before our departure. I was unemployed for 6 months after our arrival to NM. I'm grateful for that time and recognize the privilege I have to be supported for that duration. It was what my soul needed to heal the depression and stress from the move.

This year Dad and I went on a trip to Badlands NP, Mt. Rushmore, Yellowstone NP, and Grand Tetons NP. Our world is so amazingly awesome in spite of the political messes we make. It was even more meaningful to have this experience after the disappointment of a failed adventure 2 years ago when a trip turned out to be not accessible for me ( I travel using a wheelchair) and we had to end the trip prematurely.

I moved to Brussels. I think it was a good idea. I'm grateful to have again had an opportunity to live in another country. I'm resentful though, that I'm a low-paid intern - that despite all my education and skills this was the best thing I could find; that Brussels is a city, like so many others, that thrives on the backs of unpaid and low-paid work, expecting gratitude in return. I've learned a lot from this experience - mostly about my own capacities. I now know I can work a 9-6 office job, supporting myself, if not financially then in a practical sense. But I also see the limitations of this lifestyle - how exhausted I feel, how disconnected I am from my workplace and its aims, how much I would prefer to be working in something creative or outdoors.

I have decided to transition this year. I came to the realization that I needed to live the rest of my life as a man. It felt like a huge relief, and I am grateful that I was able to make that choice, and that the process these days, living in a progressive area, is pretty easy. My partner, friends and family are supportive, and I'm happy.

I had a miscarrige in March. I thought I was strong enough to not let it affect me but it has. It's devestated me. I'm not sad that I lost a baby that wasn't viable. I am sad that I haven't gotten preganant again and everyone keeps asking me if we are trying. I hate that fucking question. Also two of my best friends are pregnant right now and while I am happy for them I can't help but being sad for me. I hate that this is consuming me. Everyone say's "It will happen when you relax" it's not that at all, it happens for people when they finally give up....

I had to change employment and that was a big deal. I was working for the school system as a Para and I really liked the child I was working with and I had great supervisors, but the work was extremely hard on my health. And some of the other kids were not so kind and it took a hard toll on my health until finally I had to make the decision to stop working without having a backup plan. It was really scary putting our family into a financial situation that I knew would be hurting us, especially when we had so many hopes and dreams. And then I went through a manic phase because of my insecurity of not having a job and spent a lot of our credit money and put us in even a worse situation. But, this eventually pushed me to extend myself to try outside things such as being more active in the public to try and bring peer support to Lawrence and through this a job found me at Bert Nash as a peer support specialist, something I didn't even think I was looking for. I didn't even know if I could do it, but thought that I had to try and it has been a very rewarding job. I really like my position and I have a very supportive atmosphere here and hope that this will be something that I can do for the long term and can feel good about while raising Katherine and paying off all the debt that I incurred while over the period of being off of work.

We sold our home of nearly 20 years and significantly downsized. It has been a fantastic experience. We are so much less burdened by our surroundings, and are surprised at how much we DON'T miss our old life. We ended up getting rid of about 80% of our stuff via an estate sale (after the kids took what they wanted, of course), and don't really miss any of it.

I changed jobs and started focusing on my health. It affected me by getting some of my time back, learning that my body can do more than I give it credit for, and allowed me to grow as a Counselor. I am so grateful and motivated. I feel like I can get to a place where my physical appearance matches the healing on my outside.

Two months ago, there was a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville to protest the removal of Confederate statues. It's 2017. White supremacists and neo-Nazis are still rallying. They still have a voice and a platform. And the president couldn't see clear to denounce their actions. So my husband and I decided to go back to church. It was the first time in many years that we had been to church – the first time we've been to church in the five years that we've been together. And we've been every week since. I'm not sure where I am as far as believing in God. I'm not sure how much I trust religion. But I believe in community and I believe in justice. And I believe we need to do more as far as a community to bring justice.

My wonderful, beautiful, kind, funny, loving, stylish remarkable mom passed away from complications related to treatment of her cancer. It is hard to describe how it affected me because I'm in the middle of it. I feel like I'm wondering around in a fog. All of the feelings you listed - I have them all. Grateful. I'm insanely grateful that I had the luck to have the most wonderful mom in the world. While she was not perfect, she was incredibly special - and it's not just me saying that. She made everyone she came into contact with feel special. I'm grateful that I was able to spend a lot of time w her over the past two years. I'm grateful I was able to tell her how much I loved her. I'm grateful for every moment. I'm grateful that I have her example to pull from for so many situations on how to act with kindness, humor, class, thoughtfulness, grace... I'm grateful for the family she's given me. I'm grateful for the love and support of my friends during this time. I'm grateful for her friends and the memories they share, allowing me to continue to get to know my mom. I'm relieved. I'm relieved she does not have to suffer anymore. I'd much rather have her here, but I'm glad she does not have to be in pain or sad or dependent. I'm resentful - but I am pushing that away. I'm mad that I don't get more time with her. I'm resentful that I didn't have more one on one time with her for both of our fear of hurting my dad's feelings. I'm resentful I didn't learn more from her when she was here. I'm resentful that I didn't get to make her a grandmother or that she didn't get to see me as the woman I want to be - and she didn't get to see me in a happy adult relationship. I'm resentful for every experience I have that I think she would love to be a part of, and of course I would love to share with her. And yes - I'm so inspired. She was much stronger than I ever gave her credit for - and endlessly positive. Even though her formative years were challenging - she never felt bad for herself. In her sickest days, she always had dignity and never wanted anyone to feel sorry for her. She always showed concern for others. She was so good at loving.

Looking back, this year seems dominated by medical stuff. Grandma continues to decline. Will she still be around come 10Q next year? I know where smart money goes. What does that mean for us? Well, more time helping out Gramma, past that, to the end -- we won't know that until the time comes. That is always the way. Kris got hit with the Diabetes diagnosis, and we've dealt with that pretty well. Doing the right things, pulling the right numbers. I think we could up our game, some working out especially for Kris, but a positive thing overall. You know, if a diabetes can be said to be good. And I started using a testosterone gel, which, in retrospect, I have probably needed for a decade. It's like the best anti-depressant ever, with better side effects. It's only misguided pride that kept me from doing this a year ago. It's made life easier, I don't hit the low-lows with the regularity I had been, though it doesn't solve all my problems. We'll see how it helps me deal with a tough year coming up.

My husband and I went on "the trip of a lifetime" this summer. We traveled all over. We started in the Netherlands, went to Israel, (which I will do over and over and over again), on to Rome for a week long class teaching AP World History, back to the Netherlands and then on to Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, back up through France, Belgium and into the Netherlands again. We "bought" a car. Rented it really, and it was so fun to be with Rob in the car, spending time, arguing over the GPS. What a great experience. We dropped of the car and then flew to England, spent some time with family and then back to the Netherlands and Edam, the first place we ever stayed on our first trip. It was an inspiring year. I want to move, I want to live, I want to go on all kinds of adventures like this.

My wife converted to Judaism. In some ways I am relieved that we now have the same baseline to go off of from a religious perspective. In other ways, this gives me a fresh start to becoming a practicing Jew again in our reform synagogue. I look forward to shaping our lives/children's lives to be an active part of the Jewish community.

Wow. The very first thing that came to my mind was the Writer's Workshop in San Miguel de Allende. Had I not gone to that, had I not met Lori Horvitz, had I not gone to Katharine Webber's class on The Unreliable Narrator, I never would have started this book. This book has saved my life. It has given me purpose, passion and drive. It has occupied my thoughts and my hours. This book has, in many ways, made the divorce more real because it has created intimacy and distance from the two fucked-up protagonists. Which brings me to the fact that the divorce was finalized on August 2 of this year, and yet it was not the first thing that came to mind. I feel grateful and inspired to have found my voice.

Going to the Sherlock Convention last year, making many good memorys and reminded me that experiences are worth more than pocessions. I'm grateful for the chance, but aslo wish I had met with more friends who were also at the convention. I know how I'd do it differently another time.

In February 2017, I got a literary agent!! This inspired me to work at my dream of becoming a children's book author. It also really affirmed my talent externally, which I think I needed at the time -- someone from the outside to validate my worth and acknowledge the kind of contributions I could make to this field. From browsing my answers from last year, I don't even think that I was admitting to myself that I wanted to write books this time last year. It's so cool to see how far I've come! In related news, Dan and I finished our lesbian fairy tale picture book, and we're waiting to hear from publishers about that. Alex and I also moved in together into the cutest nugget apartment, and I couldn't be happier or more grateful for the life we've created together. He's my rock and my biggest cheerleader and he makes me laugh more than anyone else.

I launched Poli-Anna, the first time I put something significant that is my OWN IDEA out into my community. I'm grateful and relieved because I want to do a lot more of this and in a way it was like ripping off the band-aid. I am also excited and fearful about keeping it going and stepping it into the next phase.

Alex and I married. I am, and it seems like we both are, really happy and almost happier everyday. We know we have each other to trust and protect, and we both really enjoy that life and responsibility. Additionally, there is a huge sense of relief that the actual wedding is passed....let attention on it and me in my normal conversations makes my life significantly easier. I am beyond happy to be with her and to join her family

Saying Goodbye to David Miller ז״ל My dear cousin, David Drew Miller ז״ל passed away the Saturday following Thanksgiving after a short and aggressive battle with cancer. When he decided to stop treatment and start hospice, my mom and I helped move him from Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia to his home in Richmond, Virginia knowing that our eventual departure would mean saying goodbye. A few hours before we left, David and I sat chatting in his bed with many, many more laughs than tears. I got to share my surreal premonition about adopting a son and naming him Miller. To leave worry behind him, I promised him that I understood my role in keeping our family close and connected as he and my mom always did, and their parents, my Grammy Ida and Great Uncle Marvin, always did. At one point he looked at me and as if he just realized something. He did. “Ah s***, Mol” he said. “I’m not going to be at your wedding.” I held his hand “Yes you will” I said. “We will all carry you there with us” I asked him what song we should play in his honor. “Sound of Silence” he said, without a second of hesitation. We did bring him there. Andrew and I drank from his kiddush cup under the chuppah. As I drank I locked eyes with his daughters, Megan and Leah to share David’s presence in the sanctity of that moment. And when our DJ played Sound of Silence after the horah and before the first course, our family held one another on the dance floor and let the music, the moment, and his memory entirely wash over us.

We went to Cuba! It all started with a conversation in the kitchen while making dinner, one of us mentioned wanting to go to Cuba. The others chiming in with agreement. Much agonizing later, we did it. I am so grateful we got to go, grateful I had the opportunity to learn more in a flurry beforehand, and got to talk with people while there. I felt such a strong connection with the culture and w/individuals we met, and that surprised me a little - it was a deeper emotional experience than I'd imagined. It inspired me to do more travel, reminding me that the connections in the outer world really do enrich my inner life so much.

My business partner bailed on the business and our friendship. I'm deeply hurt. I feel betrayed. It's also really destroyed my motivation and what sense of direction I had. It took me out of action for about 3 months for healing. It cost several thousand dollars in legal fees to get a separation letter pulled together. As I write this, still no felt sense of direction. No real motivation to do much of anything. Feel very burnt out.

Yeah, so the election happened. I am shaken to my core, terrified, furious. I bounce between desperate, hopeful, cynical, disconnected, grieving.

On November 8, 2016, we lost an election. I remember even at 9 pm, even at 10 pm, even at 1 am, thinking - there's just no way we'll lose the whole thing. Texting Laura to confirm there was a path, even without the states we'd lost already. Like there was just no way Hillary Clinton doesn't become president, right? How did it affect me, you ask - how do I feel? Hillary Clinton isn't president. It means not just that the world is a darker, more dangerous place - and that we've validated that indeed, white Midwesterners are racist assholes, as it were - but my life is different too. That part makes me feel selfish - it's unfair to be upset for myself when DREAMers face deportation and trans people can't serve in the military and 30 million people might lose their healthcare - but it sucks. The life I thought I'd have right now just - isn't. It won't ever be. And now I've got to reckon with who I've become and decide if it was worth it. This is the worst. I mean it's truly terrible - the feeling that maybe you just trifled away the last five years doing something that never meant anything. And look - I know that this matters to the people who are involved at the micro level. I know that people are better for their involvement in the campaign. I know that volunteers are empowered and interns have a dream and I especially know that my organizers are better rounded, more accepting people because they were part of this. But damn, I gave a lot to this thing and it crushed me. It took my heart and forced me to go numb in order to survive the experience and then reinforced that position by ending in a loss. I want to feel something again. I want to feel inspired and buoyed and mostly I want to have faith in something. My gut feeling has been gone for a long time now, and I miss it - that quiet, steady confidence that this is right, damned be the critics. I want back what November 8 took from me.

I had mono last summer from May through September. Then, just when I was starting to get better, I got it again and felt like shit from February until June. I didn't know you could even have a recurring case of mono! It was a real eye-opener, and I learned a lot. I have new-found respect for those with chronic illness. Sometimes, I need to cut myself off from world events and external problems because I can get too worked up and it literally makes me sick. I now know to listen to my body and give it what it needs—rest, exercise, sleep, clean food, more rest. It's not selfish to do what's best for me. Physical health and mental health and spiritual health are all the same thing. I've learned to accept help. I've learned to say no.

I started college this year-only a few months ago. I thought it would be really hard for me socially, but I've never been happier than I am now. I think that this is really the right place for me and the issue before wasn't me, but my environment. I am very relieved to finally be living instead of just surviving.

Going to Seattle to visit a friend. it was a great time to bond with her and her 13 niece but it also taught me that when you meet new people you want to go slow and easy. It takes time to be comfortable with new people and everyone goes at a different pace. I was at first resentful that their was some miscommunication but now I am grateful since this showed me more about myself.

I've had an awakening to live a little more artistically and creativily. It's been a year of letting go of perceptions of who I've been and refining myself and overall when this has happened in the past it opens doors to new paths in life. The odd thing it's been in the mist of much financial struggle. Funny how that works. Yin and yang.

Sitting in an AirBnB with my team in Mexico City right now, it's hard not to have my thoughts be overwhelmed by the past few days' events. Surviving the earthquake, walking through a decimated city, witnessing the heartbreak and devastation first hand. It's certainly an event that marks this year. I am profoundly grateful to be alive. After that, everything else feels trivial. Yes, I returned to IDEO. That feels big and important and I am much happier for it. But it's a job, you know? It's not life or death. I was with people on Tuesday who can't return to their homes. Our Uber driver this morning can't get his son the medicine he needs. I saw piles of rubble where buildings once were, with unknown people trapped beneath. Jobs are important, but they're not life.

While not the first significant experience that came to mind, I choose to focus on moving in with my partner, because I'd rather think about something positive, and let the rest go. Even with how eventful this process has been, with several apartment repair discoveries, new furniture not assembling quite right, painting bookcases, a shower leak, and the morning I spilling cold coffee everywhere, it's also been wonderful. We fit; we are handling things together, and that's everything I could have asked for. I'm so glad we didn't rush into this, and I'm glad we're here now.

I think that the most significant event has not been a singular thing, but rather something gradually happening over time, and that has been the fact that I have almost religiously stuck to a work out routine to stay healthy. It's almost as if I have cemented into my head that I need to do this- I don't doubt it, it doesn't take much to motivate me to work out, and I do it 6-7 days a week, every week. But the funny thing is is that I can't tell if this has made me more insecure. I expected to feel more confident about myself, and to feel healthier. I certainly do feel healthier and more mobile and agile. And I guess I sometimes do feel more confident. But there are other times when I look in the mirror and still think I'm chunky or obese. Which is really absurd. 5 years ago going into college, I weighed 215. Now, I weight 172 lbs. I know that I'm not fat and I know I'm in much better shape, but I can't get myself to fully feel that way. I still resent myself at times for what I think I should be. Overall, I'm glad that I've decided to be healthy and that I have stuck to it. Sometimes, though, I wish that I would just let myself feel more comfortable in the body I have.

What comes to mind first is really transformations of the mind. More and more this year I have been accepting what is and learning more about how much I can do without running myself into the ground. I still have a lot to learn, but I made a considerable amount of progress this year.

I experienced the bottom of my barrel. I was in a horrible place and I realized that I was becoming an alcoholic. I was drinking almost every single day. And a lot of those days I was going to bed with a good buzz on. Of course this was affecting my productivity in the evenings, and my next day at work. I was missing work, coming in late, and generally not doing a good job. I lack trust and am super good at disconnecting from people so I haven't really told anyone this. I've made jokes about leaning on the bottle too much, but I haven't been completely open and honest with anyone. Except for myself. I'm 16 days without alcohol. I'm not sure if I will quit completely. I enjoyed life when I could have a drink here or there. But I'm not sure I want to risk going back to the dark days. I want more from my life. I want to build a business. Alcohol doesn't want me to.

I guess my experience must be Morgan, my ex, cheating on me. It was so sudden and unpredictable... I don't look back wondering what I could do better, but rather I look back and wonder why I didn't end it sooner on my own terms. She really took advantage of me and hardly provided anything for herself or for me. Living together was unimaginably hard for me since she did not work. She only stayed home and played video games. For six months I struggled to make ends meet, living paycheck to paycheck for the first time in my adult life. Never again. I've learned my lesson and will not repeat the mistakes of my past. No longer will I be taken advantage of without some modicum of benefit for myself. No more parasites.

I became ill and I had to make the decision to leave my job. It has affected my self esteem in many ways, especially at first. The decision left me with a teeeible sense of uncertainty and I felt like a failure because I and the doctors have been unable to get my illness under predictable control. Also, I felt resentful when I would go through a particularly bad spell, and I was left too drained to do much of anything. I am grateful now, as my attention has shifted away from myself as a teacher (my job) and I am able to embrace other aspects of who I am...and spend more time with my grown children and granddaughter. My inspiration is to brace every day with joy and count my blessings for the gifts in my life.

One significant experience from this past year is starting college. I am so grateful to go to such a great school with awesome people. I'm constantly reminded of how lucky I am to be here when I walk to class and around campus and see how beautiful it is. The transition isn't particularly easy, especially during the High Holidays, but I know it will get easier as it goes.

I ran away from a sad situation it made my life even worse i made so many wrong choices and am so unhappy right now i do not know how to fix it

The most significant experience of this year was the birth of my first granddaughter! It was amazing!! She is amazing!! And I was lucky enough to be there when she was born! I am also blessed enough to live so close to her that I get to see her almost daily and be a big part of her life. I am so grateful and am enjoying every moment with her! How truly blessed and grateful I am! Another significant event was the loss of my very good friend, Cindy. It was sad and difficult watching her die of cancer. It has been a horrible loss for me and has left a gabbing hole in my heart. I miss her terribly. She was the one I did so much with and it has left me at a real loss. It was the circle of life - my granddaughter was born on June 2nd and my friend passed away on June 9th, one week later. I am grateful she had been in my life and I am grateful for my granddaughter.

I left the safety of a corporate job with a significant pay check to start my own business. I was terrified at first, when I am willing to admit it. I feel like a new man and energized by my passions and new found freedom. Sure, I still worry about the income from time to time. However, all signs are pointing to a fruitful and fulfilling future on my own.

I fell in love...with public transportation. Something about learning to navigate each city without the reliance upon the comfortability of Lyft & Uber began to really resonate. I realized it was a metaphor for my greater life. I found happiness and fulfillment when I tried new things, and they worked. Or, they didn't work, and I learned. Public transportation has become a way for me to learn a city in a way that the above ground routes don't quite foster. It's something I am very proud of, and I hope it continues to represent a greater theme of exploration of the uncomfortable in my life.

Over the last year I became closer friends with several people. These friendships over the year continued to overwhelm me with gratitude as I knew that I had many people constantly supporting and loving me. It has been a difficult transition since the end of last semester, as most of these people graduated and moved to different parts of the country and other stopped speaking to me. Coming back to school without those who I had learned to count on was and continues to be difficult, but I am relieved and happy that though my friends who graduated are no longer here physically, they all stay in touch and I can still count on them.

Terra came into our life in the winter of 2017. Our relationship developed into something more and it the three of us started having mutual feelings. After honest conversations, Tina and I decided to open our marriage and hearts and started dating Terra. This experience has taught each of us so much about ourselves, what we want, what we need, how to be honest with communication (all the time), putting words to feelings and to look deep within when struggling with issues of fear, jealousy or inadequacy. I'm so grateful for this experience and that Tina and I trust and honor each other to invite a third person into our life in a way we had never expected. I feel a sense of relief that, with Terra, we will have a more realistic chance of getting our individual needs met.

The Most significant universally was, of course, the election; it has been a shattering experience, upending what in retrospect must have been complacency about what is in the heads of countless people; who knew? Significant, on a less grand level, was the birth of Liam in May; he's a darling smiler and the joy he gives makes for hope that normal life can also go in tandem with upheavals... Being appalled at our new and dismal Anti-people politics and joyful over the New baby vie inside of me...how long can A person sustain the bitterness before The joy comes along and--at least for a Time-- washes over? For that I am grateful; for the other, I am puzzled, hurt, with a feeling of 'this was Not supposed to be!'

pulled my back out, and it ended up being a pinched nerve that caused my Left foot to go numb. After 2 Epidurals in my back, the second one took. I had to go to PT. It was awful not being able to walk much without my foot going numb. I am so grateful the second epidural worked.

I turned 30 and I'm ok with it. As women we are forced fee this idea of by 30 if you're not married and have children then no one is gonna want you. I moved to May at 27 and made it my own by 30. I've gained more confidence then ever before, and I look damn good while doing it. Turning 30 has affected me in a postive way. I want people to change the views of what they think a woman in her 30's is supposed to look like, act like, or even if she's in a relationship or not. I'm so excited for what the future has in store for me.

Well the most obvious is the election of Donald Trump. I was shocked, I think along with pretty much everyone I know. The day immediately after the election, weary from watching election returns all night I got on a train to NYC to go to a meeting for work. While on the train, I got to talking to the man sitting next to me. He felt the same as I did-- a mixture of shock and concern for our country. I remember his explanation clearly, though--"There's a lot of anger out there." While I agreed with him, I'm not sure I fully understood this until this past summer seeing the videos and photographs of the white men in khakis and white shirts chanting "Jews will not replace us' and holding signs about how "Jews are descended from Satan". It's horrifying how angry people are and how they need to place blame for all the things that aren't going right on groups of people who are different from them-- Latinos, Blacks, muslims, immigrants, Jews, women,... It's truly troubling times we're in and I'm afraid while trying to find hope in the large groups, really masses of people who feel the same way.

The birth of my daughter - and I am so thankful! All we went through, infertility and miscarriage, with her possibly having a lung tumor or a heart or brain malformation.. and with the pregnancy - the Hyperemesis, her being breech, losing my job... Mikayla Anne is the best thing to ever happen to me!!!

My panic attacks finally went away. I mean I am cured. Something happened and they just vanished. Their leaving concurred with my starting to learn Norwegian so I wonder if there is a connection. I am grateful. I am 33 and I am just now experiencing life without a constant daily overlay of panic and anxiety. It's like being reborn.

Turning 60. It doesn't get more significant than that. Or does it? Is it really so different from 58 or 59, or even 61 or 62? It's not really, but then again it is. We're taught to measure our lives by decade milestones and 60 is perhaps the most significant of all as it marks the undeniable arrival of becoming old. I know that I'm not not yet old. I still feel pretty young at 60. But it's undeniable that I am now getting old and, regardless of how I feel, the world sees me as starting the downward slide of life, becoming less relevant, less vital. Wait, wait, I want to cry. I'm far from done yet. There's still so much I want to do...I have to do. That song that's been in my head every Rosh Hashana for as long as I can remember — "At last for those who die with all their music in them" —is reaching its crescendo, the chorus swelling, the drums beating louder awaiting the final cymbals' clang ...or will it be the small, dull plink of the last key of the piano, no foot pressing down the pedal to preserve the sound? I must vow to make the most of the next 20 or 30 years, wasting not a moment.

I don't think it's one significant experience for me this time. Everything this year has been so amazing. Lots of healing events that came through travel, daily missions to the store, biking in the heat, selling comics, and other stuff like that has helped me become more comfortable with myself and others.

Losing Meme was one of the most painful things I've ever experienced. I felt (and to some extent still feel) regret having not talked to her or seen her more. There's so much I wish I could say to her, so much I wish that we could've done. Since her death, I've been trying not to place blame on myself and to use my pain for good. I've tried channeling my grief into my agoraphobia recovery, using her as a guiding light through this struggle.

Being part of the search process for our lead pastor... it has been an amazing adventure. Challenging at times, but full of uncovering new things about our community, myself and my faith, and doing all of that with a group of acquaintances who have now become family. So, so grateful to have been part of this process (and relieved we are now at the end of it!).

I had many significant experiences last year. 1. I lost my job with Holiday through a reduction in force. It was devastating and personal. 2. I broke up with Kevin when I found out he had been cheating on me and discovered what a narcissist he is. Also devastating since our relationship had stabilized. 3. Jake, somewhat unexpectedly, moved out to live with Ashley. Devastating only in that he felt he had to lie to me about it until it was a done deal. All of these things felt horrible at the time. I was very resentful of the job loss as it seemed very targeted and created a trust concern for me. Working in this economy is very employer driven and challenging when it comes to building professional relationships. I really value loyalty in my life. Where is there a healthy place for than in work? As for the relationship thing, I have shown another not great choice to the door. I don't seem to be able to control the timing of these things, but I am glad to have the personal strength to make these choices. I hope I get better at choosing. Jake, where do I start. Why lie? All kids leave. Don't be passive aggressive. Don't lie, Don't be unreliable. I am so proud of how he is in the world, but so devasted and saddened by how he treats me. 4. I started a new job in January with Providence. Although very burnt and very reluctant to drink the koolaid, I really like it here. They really seem to like me and recognize my strengths and there are paths of upward mobility for me. For this outcome from #1, I am grateful.

My son Jake had his Bar Mitzvah in September! It was AMAZING! Jake is beginning to find his voice as an adult- starting to take more responsibility and beautifully interacting in front of a group. He song led the service and showed his depth and love of Judaism. It made me proud and so happy! I am grateful that he is my son and that he took this experience so seriously and learned and taught and shared! I am SO relieved it is now over - but the reward of his event is that he is showing how amazing he can be! I hope I remember the day for a long time!

We moved to chihuahua. It was a lot harder than I thought. To be far away from family and friends. My kids are still small so a little help is always useful. I tried to do everything by myself as if I was left alone at the middle of the desert. I wept as I hadn't for a long time. I felt useless and hopeless.

Well, the glaringly obvious catastrophic meteor strike of an answer is the results of the 2016 election. It feels like longer ago, but I think it was actually "in the past year." It has not directly affected me in a material way, yet, but I have been living with a sort of constant background horror and anxiety ever since.

My partner got into remission from cancer. For this I am truly grateful but this is only the beginning. She is on an uphill journey to health and the system really struggled with catering to her needs. Be it medication or support. I am grateful she is better and yet resentful that she got sick. I had a contract role but it finished. I was grateful for the work and a bit annoyed that it finished.

I started a new job that is both exciting and scary. I am grateful for the opportunity and the chance Casey and Dan have given me. I am inspired to help small business and my family.

“Oh my gosh. I can’t believe it! Are you seeing this?! LOOK AT GOD” As the moon devoured the sun on August 21, 2017 to create totality, I found myself in its path. In the seconds that led up to those less than 3 minutes of total darkness, birds began singing their night songs, insects began coming alive with their summer night melodies, and I found myself in complete moment of profound-ness. As the darkness swept across the neighborhood, a swift, crisp wind began to blow through. I felt as though this wind was coming up from the Earth, coursing through my very soul-the essence of that I am- and connecting me to the heavens. This sensation was almost like the universe itself was taking my whole being and pointing it to the sky. As my mail-woman jumped out of her truck, she began yelling: “Oh my gosh. I can’t believe it! Are you seeing this?! LOOK AT GOD”. In that moment, my chakras exploded and became supercharged. I felt more connected to God, to Philip, to Liz, to every living thing. It WAS a true psychedelic experience and the most profound moment of my life. I hope to still draw inspiration from it.

Going to see Angles In America has left a big impression on me. Inspired me to create more, and made me feel alive and present in a way that's a bit hard to define. It moved me like nothing I've seen in a while.

A significant experience this past year is joining UBM as of January 9th, 2017. It was such a blessing to be laid off within 3 months from Funrise at the end of 2016. I told myself I would not accept a job just for the money - that I was looking for something deeper. I then thought hard about what I was looking for in my next gig -- and that was beyond the $...it was the PEOPLE. I then reached out to Howard, my former rep for Licensing Expo, because I had such an amazing time working with him and on the event I thought perhaps that would be a good fit...and it was!!! I am so happy here, which is important because you spend majority of your week at work! I never thought I'd work with such a talented, nice, encouraging group of people. It makes my overall life so much better because I am less stressed, less paranoid, and not as annoyed all the time! In turn has also helped my relationship with my boyfriend, mother, family and friends overall positive!

This year I met kevin. In June. I'm grateful, relieved and inspired. As we go into the Jewish new year I'm hopeful that he will join me on my Jewish journey. But I'm coming to terms with what it will mean if he doesn't. I'll still get the Jewish family I want but the support will be very different. That makes this new year extremely thought provoking for both of us.

I lost my father in May. I was defined by him, and I honestly don't know who I am without him. It has made me question everything about my life as it is right now; the brevity of life, the meaning of life, whether I'm living my life authentically ... the list goes on and on. I have a feeling that 2018 will be a year for personal changes in my life, although I don't know exactly how those will play out.

I'm going through a break up, turning 50 and the summer is almost over. i have not had a bout of depression like this in 10 years. I hope that this is a chance to work through some things and come out healthier, mentally, on the other side

Well - how do I begin? This year I was diagnosed with an aggressive, rare cancer, and I'm still in the middle of the experience. I had three operations this summer, and I am currently waiting to find out if I will require a fourth. My world has shrunk inwards. There are no longer years of holidays, family, and reviewing 10Qs. Instead, there is only today.

I can't say that I've had just one significant experience that has happened in the past year. I've had so many experiences that have changed my life. I continued to face prejudice, racial profiling, and touristic scams in a foreign country. These experiences has taught me to pick myself up and carry on with my head held high. Needless to say, I decided to stay in Russia because I have fallen in love with the people and the culture. Yes, there had been people who didn't treat me so well, but not all people are bad. I have met some of the kindest people here, and life is a lot better here than back in the U.S. where I was originally from. I went to Germany during the New Year holiday to meet a man that I had met online. I really wanted things to work out, but I ended up being hurt along the process. This experience has taught me to never destroy myself over a man who isn't worth anything. I joined a gym, and worked with a personal trainer. I saw amazing results, but I developed feelings for my trainer along the process. Needless to say, things didn't end very well. I've leaned that I shouldn't get too close to anyone and cross that boundary of letting my guard down for anyone, especially a man. I began to go to parties, nightclubs, and other social events out in the city, and I learned how to socialize for the very first time. I've met many interesting people, but I've also met a young man who was interested in me at first but then broke my heart. Because of so much heartache I have experienced this past year, I feel into a deep spiral of depression and slowly gained back all the weight I had lost before. I've also realized that my food addiction has gotten worse in the past year, and that I keep using food to numb my feelings. I went to Peru this summer, and met my dad's side of the family. I even went to Machu Picchu with my dad for the first time, and it was truly a magnificent experience. But I've noticed that my dad is getting old. It's a harsh reality that I'm still not ready to accept. But I guess the most significant experienced that has happened to me is when I turned 25. I know it's just a number, but I've realized that I'm also getting older and that life is way to short to be chasing after men who are no good for me or to wait around for other people to make me happy. I'm grateful for all of the life experiences - both good and bad - that have happened in the past year. With each life experience, I have learned a valuable lesson that came along with it.

There are so many different experiences I have had in the past year that have felt significant. One that has happened most recently, was that my ex boyfriend who was previously the love of my life, came out to me. I have truly believed even when we were broken up that he was the one. The person. The end of my looking and I had found him when I was 18. Turns out that's not even close to true. At first this was terribly difficult to process and understand or handle. At my core I am so happy that he knows himself. But I am terribly sad for myself. Reconciling those two experiences is hard. Each time we hang out, I get more acclimated to this new reality. I am grateful for our now soon to be never ending best friendship. I am sad for my loss, but I am hopeful in my heart that when I recover, I can find that new soul mate. That new person who will fill that now empty void? It is weird but I am grateful to live where my ex does so that we can build a new chapter of our lives together, even if it isn't what I thought it might be.

This has been a challenging year on many levels. A new boss who is terrible, a new working environment and the shift of all my close colleagues. OPATS is not the same and the leadership is just terrible. As a consequence, rather than seeing though my extension, I have been sunset and am intensely searching for the next thing. I am struggling a bit because there were some positions which seemed like such good fits and I was not even considered or was a finalist. At home its obvious that Tim is not going to follow thought with anything in relationship to Noah and just wants to be an observer. He hasn't been paying for things, doesn't help with getting to or picking him up from Pallotti. I went to a lawyer and he should be getting the divorce agreement today or tomorrow

Pat and I broke up in April. It shook me, threw me into a depression, but also made me take some necessary, healthy actions. I started going to therapy more consistently and starting taking medicine, which helped with the depression. (To be honest, I was depressed long before we broke up - the relationship ending was just the straw that broke the camels back) I became more in touch with my self - my natural inclinations, tendencies, and fears. I faced my emotions and realized that I'm okay on my own. I struggled with separation anxiety and I think that I finally addressed that. The break up forced me to find a new apartment and really look at my life on an individual scale, rather than in a relationship. I became more self-sufficient and calmer. Four months later, Pat and I are actually talking and spending time together again. I think that I needed to be on my own in order to be able to be a good partner (as cliche as that sounds). Now, I am extremely grateful for being in his life and view him as an individual, rather than using the relationship (and him) as a crutch. Overall, the experience was one of the most life changing things I've ever gone through. It was not easy in the slightest, but now that I'm on the other side, I'm grateful for the growth. If we didn't break up, I would have probably kept sliding and becoming more dependent and less mentally healthy. It could have become even more toxic, ruining any chances for future reconnection.

The trip to New Orleans. That city blew me away and I can’t wait to go back. I think a lot of the fun was the people I went with, we were all there to have a good time, but each on our own terms. I wish I ‘d gotten to see more of the city sorroundings. Maybe next time. I ‘m glad I stayed away from that awful sounding party street though, so to me the city is nothing but beautiful. I’m grateful to have a job that let’s me go halfway around the world just to listen to people talk at a conference.

Donald Trump got elected. I am neither grateful, nor relileved. I am inspired to work harder to minimize the impact of this disaster

My dad passed away on his 91st Birthday. I had many emotions..... sorrow at the top because while had dementia for the last 10 years he was still my guiding light and my hero. I'm all the emotions listed above as I was grateful that I had over 50 years with him, glad that he seemed to pass on his own terms, sad and relieved for my mom who took amazing care of him for a long time and did it with only love but now it's time for her to move forward. While it does t always look like it sometimes, I want to do better in his memory.

In the past year, I started a new job after being unemployed for 5 months. While many people would say they are grateful or excited about something like this, I'm actually resentful of it. I started a new job doing something very similar to my previous job, despite telling myself that I wasn't all that interested in doing something like that again. Unfortunately, I couldn't seem to be given a chance doing something else because my background proved that I was good at this one thing, soI was pigeonholed and couldn't seem to catch a break from anyone who thought I might be able to try and excel at something new.

My oldest daughter graduated high school and went to college. I wish we were closer, but doesn't every mom. I wish she was home sick. I wish she did not have mono. I feel like I do not have real connections with people and I feel like that my entire life. Just depressing to think about. I know O am better off than most people but can't help thinking I am missing out.

Getting a number in the NYC marathon. I've always been a runner, but a full marathon scared me. I have loved every second of training thus far and made some Amazing friends along the way. I'm grateful, relieved, and inspired.

I successfully advocated for myself to not get a hysterectomy for the past two years and finally found a doctor that could perform a more non-invasive test to give me answers as to whether I had cancer. I am grateful to the doctor, inspired by my ability to believe in myself, resentful that so many doctors didn't know what to do and mostly relieved that I didn't have cancer again. The moral, don't ever give up on your own best instincts when you know what is right for you! Find others who believe in you and draw strength and knowledge from them.

Our JCC received a bomb threat last winter, along with a lot of JCCs. This experience went on and on for about 4 months. Almost no day during that time was unaffected by this threat. If we weren't reviewing new procedures with staff, We were answering questions from our board or our preschool parents or our staff's parents, or We were responding to the FBI. There was almost zero chance that there would be an actual bomb, but it was still an existential threat. Some people envisioned our entire 150,000 sf facility reduced to rubble. If enough people were scared to come to the JCC, that would be far more damaging than a typical backpack bomb. During this time, only one community leader reached out to us - a rabbi who wanted "some scary stories" to add to his sermon. Pissed me off. And then saddened me. Couldn't they imagine what we were going through? What kind of "community" is this? And then the final indignity. The perpetrator of all this angst is an Israeli kid with a computer. Suddenly the air's out of this balloon - somehow it hadn't actually been a threat because of who was behind it. I disagree. People at my JCC were terrorized. People who were paying attention saw just how vulnerable we really all are.

I got a really amazing placement with my new advisor, Dr. C, all through some proactive work on my part. I changed my topic from circumcision risks and benefits educational pamphlet to something I've been wondering about: health care disparities for children in the foster care system. I am very grateful, relieved, and inspired, and I have been doubly happy that the placement, with the SF public health dept., has been going so swimmingly. Now I just need to finish up my paper, and get started with the study part of this research!

I made the decision that I want to be an elementary teacher. I have been flirting with the idea for awhile. I am now committed to the change even though I can't do it immediately. It has been hurting my insides knowing that I am not leaving as being a legacy. I have not done anything to really effect positive change in this messed up world. Becoming a teacher will be my opportunity to do something good to imprint the next generation in a positive way.

I finished my first year of grad school. This event deeply affected me emotionally and mentally. Emotionally, I struggled a lot, to find my feet, my confidence, my faith in my ability to produce quality work, it somehow forced me to confront my deepest insecurities. It also opened my mind to deeper and more reflective thinking about the world I live in, and how this world works and why. My perspective on my life and the world has forever been altered. I don't yet know exactly how to put my new knowledge into action but I am definitely a different thinker than I was before. I feel relieved to have finished one year, avoidant/anxious of this last year, sometimes inspired, and sometimes resentful. It's all a mixed bag of nuts.

I started a new job this past December and I am so grateful to get out of my old job. This environment has no stress and the job is really easy. I would read my old 10Q questions and year after year it would say that I wanted a new job and for various reasons I could not just quit my old one. I know I don't want to be in the corporate world ultimately but at least I don't feel stressed. I'm inspired to follow my heart and be true to myself and find my passion.

My youngest sister died in May. I am left with a much smaller family, just my brother and myself. I wasn't close to any of my family since I live on the other side of the country from all of them, but none the less, I do care about and miss them all. It is heartbreaking that we are almost all gone.

So much has happened in this past year that it's hard to pick just one. From getting my heartbroken to buying a house to being diagnosed with PCOS and T2DM. I guess the later was the most significant for it caused me to pause for a moment and evaluate my life style and food choices. I'll be honest I felt like a failure when I was diagnosed since I have a PhD in nutrition and should know better. However, after I collected myself together I was able to use my nutrition knowledge and have started to fight my diseases and am living healthier overall.

A few years ago, I was coldly fired from my job. I didn't necessarily love the work, but the firing was a part of a sequence of events that left me feeling low, unwanted and irrelevant. My relationship with my boss was rather abusive, but I'm like a moth to a flame for that. I picked myself up from the ground and started over, still floundering a bit for the next year, but I found a new job and tried to shake the looming feeling of being a total fraud. While contently working at my job, I received an email from a former colleague who started his own company and wanted me to join their team. I quickly jumped aboard, feeling completely terrified, yet excited. I am now a part of his team and have never been more empowered. No one thinks I'm a fraud. No one thinks I'm doing a bad job. In fact, they seem impressed with anything I do. I know these situations are always bound to change, but the whole situation was validating. It showed me that something wonderful and inspiring can come out of any situation, no matter how abusive or bleak.

Oh man, like six things come to mind. Nothing I quite want to "describe". 😄 Now that I'm through all of it, it seems like maybe nothing too remarkable, y'know? Just life. I mean, the bad parts at least; they weren't SO bad, perhaps. The good parts have been freakin' great though, totally remarkable! Let's go with that. I'm less insecure than ever before. I feel "a part of something", when it comes to my family & friends, & that's really all I want in life.

I'd have to say the most significant experience I've had over this past year was moving in with Rachel in January. It has affected me in many ways. I'm very grateful to have the experience. Though we've had an enormous amount of conflict I have learned a lot about her and about myself. Whether her and I stay together is a bit up in the air at this point, but I"m grateful nonetheless.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year would be getting in a small fight with my best friend and then shortly after we stopped being friends. This may seem like pointless, small, high school drama but to me it was more. It was such a significant part of my life because it did change a lot. Usually after a fight we would be friends again so fast, but this time we slowly grew apart. It was not the same and I was so sad over it but I knew I had to move on. I made a whole new group of friends and my life changed a lot since then. We are friends again now and still just as close but I wish things never changed. I loved life and how it used to be and I do not know what it is but everything has been feeling weird lately and I hate change. I miss being a free spirit and not having the stress of growing up. I do not like growing up and I think that is the problem. I do not want to grow up, it scares me. It is senior year it should be the funnest year of high school but as of now I have a bad feeling that I just can not shake. I just want everything to slow down and let me catch up to it. But I am still a positive person and i am going to make the best out of this and make life fun again and how it used to be.

The election of 45 affected me greatly. Each day brings out new horrors. I feel angry, afraid and depressed, not only just because of him, though he's terrible enough, but because of what it says about the citizens of this country. It feels like so much of the progress we've made could become undone. I fear for my children and grandchildren.

Moved back to home state. I did it for family but struggle with having to drop my life and leave

Hurricane Irma is the most recent and Significant experience that comes to mind. i am Grateful and Relieved. as the storm approached, we were apprehensive and experiencing PTSD from Andrew so many years ago. i was worried for my mom but more so for my nephews and my brother. i remember how Andrew aged my dad and i didn't want the same thing to happen to my brother. we were untouched and able to help so many people by offering them a house to stay and food to eat. i walked out the day after the storm and was brought to tears just hearing the birds sing. i have walked out each morning and been thankful for the song of the birds all around us. Life is Good.

The woman that hired me a couple of years ago for a job I was really not experienced to do, retired this year. I am very grateful that she brought me in and trained me - it got my foot in the door, which was something I needed. She gave me chance to do something great for my career, but in many ways she was also in my way. Since she has retired, all sorts of doors have been opening up for me regarding my true skills. In this sense, I am relieved that she retired. I can even say that working with her has been very inspiring to me as well.

I wasn't promoted, and the reason i wasn't promoted was because my supervisor was more interested in looking out for himself than he was in looking out for me. I have also done a bad job regarding my own self care. These experiences have made me realize that I should be more assertive and proactive about standing up for myself.

We got a record amount of rain from hurricane Harvey. 1 out of 3 people I know were flooded. The community I'm part of banded together to help out the people affected by doing rescues, sheltering and helping clean up. Serious life event. Crazy times we live in. I was proud of my community for everything they did. We really pulled together and worked to help those in need. We are truly blessed

Getting involved with Tom Northrop. Where to begin? Its like coming home again and again. Learning for certain, but also an actusluzing of all the work ive soent over the years. I guess i wasnt ready before..i become a better person via this relationship. I am able tobshare my greatest gifts and have them reveived. I experience great joy, and then share it with others. Its lije all rhe best parts of my marriage mixed with all of this new stuff. We will be grandparents together. We are partners in the teuest sensr. Thank you, Universe!

I have been deeply impacted by the disgrace of the presidential election and what seems to be a steady slide into authorianism. I have felt scared, overwhelmed, hopeless, enraged, awakened, engaged and have been more politically active than ever before. I feel grateful to feel joy and connection with my family/community even in the midst of big fear and sadness. I have been learning to practice returning to each moment and appreciating what is happening now versus what may happen in the future.

I met a wonderful person named Jenise Huffman. She is victim of an accident and suffers from seizures daily and is in a wheelchair. She never complains and has such a sweet spirit. She has been a daily inspiration to me.

There is no doubt it was the trip to India. This was not a tourist type trip. I lived with the families, shared many of their daily experiences. Unlike Korea and Japan, the people were extremely friendly and welcoming. We had very deep discussions and, I think because I was safe-I was leaving- some exposed some very private details of their lives. The philosophy is so different from the US and it enhanced the discussions. One of the most entertaining parts was the number of people who suggested they "liked my accent".

In February, I was having drinks with a colleague from a former employer. We hadn't seen in each other in quite some time, and so we spent several lovely hours catching up and talking about our lives and what might be next for each of us. She had reminded me of a time several years prior when she was facing whether to return to school to finish her BA. The program would require a little less than two years of her time, but she was concerned about how much work it would be, how much it would take her away from her family and one-year-old daughter. At the time, I asked her what she was doing two years ago, and asked her to reflect on how quickly two years pass by. I think that helped her make the decision to go back to school, and she even earned a master's degree to boot. it's good when, without realizing it, you can help people make critical decisions that free them to move forward with their lives. And it's good when that favor gets returned. Later that evening, I noted her tattoo sleeve, and told her how I had always wanted to have a sleeve of my own. She looked at me and said, without much energy, "Do it!" There was something deep about her imperative that freed me. I didn't really need permission from someone else, but the direct, bracing answer woke me up: stop dreaming about things. Just do them. So I did. I researched the online portfolios of local artists, found one that really resonated with me, and made an appointment. Seven months later, my sleeve is 70% complete, and it's more amazing and beautiful than I could have ever hoped. And. Getting a tattoo sleeve was, ultimately, giving myself permission to follow through on something that meant the world to me. And it required that I actually commit to doing it. That I commit to sharing my ideas, my hopes, my concepts. That I had to make myself vulnerable. What if the artist thought my ideas were stupid? What if he challenges me--who am I, after all, to have tattoos related to Buddhism when I am such a bad Buddhist? I have spent the past several decades learning how to not ever make myself vulnerable. Step one: don't share your deepest, most important truths with anyone, lest they mock you or turn those truths against you. And so my truths were mine alone, not to be shared. Sure, I told people I was Buddhist, but I rarely talked to them about why. About how Buddhism both demands personal responsibility while acknowledging that the world is out of our control. About the misalignment of who we are with reality, or, as John Rechy described in "City of Night," "the heart is made to yearn for what the world can't give." That compassion and kindness matter more than just about anything. And I haven't talked about how Buddhism has changed me...how it's helped me to become less anxious, more present, kinder, more compassionate. , The sleeve changes that. I am now literally wearing my heart on my sleeve.

I quit long-time mortgage lending job, semi-retired and moved back to the town I grew up in. Quiting my job was easy. I was truly relieved to finally be out of that business. That was a job I went into in the 1980's out of need for a paycheck. So I guess I never really enjoyed it. It was awesome to move back to my hometown. I honestly didn't think I would be back here to live. But now that I'm here, closer to family and some old friends, I really wouldn't want to be anywhere else. I live a simply life - a very fulfilling and happy life. I have a seasonal job that allows me to work in the winter and then I have the summer months off to play!!! I couldn't be happier.

The most significant experience that happened in the past year was moving to New York City. It has drastically impacted my entire way of life, mostly in good ways but there are some negatives as well. I am most definitely grateful to live in this city near my eldest sister Stacy, and I am grateful that I have the resources to be able to survive in this city that often eats people up and spits them out. I feel mostly inspired by the city, although I am still struggling to meet new people and establish local friends. New York City has a wealth of culture, but with all of these people, the city can be surprisingly isolating.

What to make of a year where nothing of seeming significance happened? I achieved some goals, but things stalled in their tracks. I don't really want to go further with most of them...been there, done that, t-shirt, etc. Last year I said turning 70 was the most significant event. Perhaps 71 was, too. It is not the years, per say, but the growing awareness of my mortality, and with it a restlessness to make the most of the best of the time remaining. My brain schemes and dreams while my body slows, my energy flags. I had pictured myself aging with grace. Ha! I am sputtering, wavering, still searching for that something more. Maybe that is what was significant in this last year.

I got married! I am the most grateful. We are a team and we were surrounded by all of our loving beating hearts in the redwoods to dance and love each other. I am inspired by our family. I am inspired by the joy of the process. I am home. My life is about us, now, not me, more than ever. And it's brilliant.

This past year, I gave birth to John and became a Mommy. It has affected me in so many ways. I think becoming his mom has taught me how to love in a less selfish way. It's no longer about me or my happiness, but about his wellbeing. The little things don't seem to matter anymore. I am so grateful for this experience! Being his mom is my favorite thing that I have ever done. I also think becoming a mom has strengthened my relationship with God and giving me a deeper understanding of His love for us. I've realized how out of control I am, and how He is the only One I can rely on.

Found out that I am BRCA2 positive (a cancer risk gene mutation that is more common among people of Ashkenazi Jewish descent) This prompted me to take some preventative measures in the past year. I am grateful to be able to find this out, and reduce risk of developing these cancers in the future.

I became comfortable with myself Started meditation My mantra LEAD WITH LOVE I AM Grateful

My mother died on January 8th. I feel grief for all the fragmentation in our family, much of which she caused. There was no coming together. As I struggle with my own issues with my children, I'm struck with an overwhelming sense of grieving, for all that is and isn't in our relationships. I wanted to heal what I saw as the sickness in my family of origin...bring up a new, loved, healthy generation. Maybe that was pure hubris. I also always hoped that my conflicted relationship with my mom would heal. What I was left with was the realization that the best I could hope for was to have no expectations, accept that she was who she was, and to generally come to our interactions needing to protect myself from her general nastiness. I try now to look back and acknowledge gratitude for what was positive, and honor her life, acknowledging that she had her own struggles, history, and strengths. At the same time, I need to honor my own feelings of lack, loss and grief, and move towards my future and how I want to craft my life as I age and move through this life.

Robert did move home and its working well - he is going to school, playing video games and really helping me out around the house. I am not getting an office in the n ew space which I am bummed about but hope that the cube will be isolating enough. Need to stay out of the office politics and not pick up the pieces for others.

My relationship with Caitlin is easily the biggest event. This is the first relationship I have been in since college, over four years ago. It's had many tumultuous moments, and I have definitely failed in many ways to be a good partner. There are times where I think our relationship is co-dependency and we should split apart. Then I realize that we actually care for each other and want to support the other's success, and that we are committed to communicating and creating fun experiences for the other. I feel grateful.

I got to watch my mom go through a stem cell transplant, which basically involves coming back to life after being nearly dead. Keith and I were in NY the first week she was home from the hospital, and it was amazing to see the transformation from a woman who did almost nothing but eat and sleep to someone who was recognizable as my mother. My mom has always been one of my heroes, but watching her go through the whole cancer experience has elevated her that much more. She's cancer free and stronger than ever.

We moved back to the U.S. after 4.5 years in Roma. While I am in many ways happy to be "home" where I understand the language and how things are done, I miss the lifestyle in Italy. I do not miss the insanity of people running into you and cars parking on the sidewalk, but I miss the food, the walking, the sights, and (some) people. I miss saying "I live in Roma." I miss speaking Italian. I am happy we own a beautiful home and are nearer to family and friends, but I am stressed about the current political climate and our assinine president.

The really big "experience" was the end of Mum's life and all that entailed. Support from her place of care, but Hospice giving advice that felt wrong. I had to advocate. One true friend helped me make decisions (Xtian.) Then when Comfort Measures were implemented, about 4 days late, everything happened fast. I did everything I needed to do. Made sure Harmony had a last chance to talk to her, made sure Daddy went to visit. I saw that Daddy had not preplanned beyond the cemetery. We had a meeting with McGann Hay on Monday night to do so, and Mum passed on Tuesday. Wrote obit, eulogy & baked. Family poured in and the support was amazing. Relieved, Grateful, and oddly Profoundly Sad.

The most significant experience this year was the birth of our grandson. How fortunate I am to be able to see my daughter become a mother! Our little guy is healthy and has every advantage. It is so wonderful that our girls enjoy having us in their lives. When all is said and done, even a fulfilling career can't top the love of those important to us. Holding our little guy for the first time on Rosh Hashanah- that has been the best blessing of all!

This year I fell in love, for the first time in a very long time. It was short-lived and ended bitterly, but I am still glad that it happened. I still find it so hard to make myself vulnerable and open myself up to potential pain, embarrassment or rejection, but I managed to do that this year and I don't regret it. I have spent much of my adult life carving out a life of my own and learning to be independent; and more recently I have begun to crave the opposite, and find it hard to cultivate a sense of openness and create space for others in my life. This year has been an important step forward in that, and I hope that I can continue to work towards that vulnerability in the coming year.

I published my latest book, The Imagination Gap. I'm proud of it - feel as if I wrote something, am talking about something that has real value, new insight. Of course, like so many other projects, including previous books, I haven't been able to capitalize on the opportunity as fully as I would have liked. I haven't been able to make the time, or spend the resources. I continue to wonder what I might have been able to achieve if I could get more out of each project, or book, where I have done work I believe is valuable.

I started school for my CPA which has been an enlightening experience. I'm learning a lot about myself as a person and I'm also, naturally, learning a lot about accounting as a profession. I never considered accounting as a field of study, much less thought I'd enjoy it as much as I do. It's strange to finally understand the concept of truly loving your work, after so long thinking 'well this is probably as good as it gets'.

I had my first job interview in over 10 years! Actually much longer for that. To be completely honest it was my real first job interview and I was terrified. Then I did it and it was totally awesome! I nailed it😎And ended up getting 2 job offers and getting the one I wanted. It made me realize how much I have grown and that others see me differently then I do myself. It also was an eye opener to inspire me to take chances! I heard this guy talking about coping with rejection! This was after my interviews but it made so much sense when he said the fear of rejection caused him to miss so much and to not grow and move forward. I want to grow and move forward and to try new things. So I am working on getting over the fear of rejection 😜

We celebrated our grandsons first birthdays & even had a backyard wedding. Grateful for walking my daughter down the aisle (so to speak, actually the side lawn , so to speak too ) Relieved that despite all my fears and apprehensions all went well surrounded by family & friends.

Not so much an event but a process. My friendships and my significant relationships are reduced greatly over the past year. This has forced me to look at myself as an individual who I am and am I comfortable in myself and with myself and what do I want. I have had to spend a lot of time by myself doing things by myself being alone with myself . What I have found is that I am capable of this which is something I have feared my entire life, I have cried over the thought of being alone. I have struggled with attachment my entire life I am working at this it is a difficult process but I am more and more comfortable with this and find myself liking the idea of being by myself being in my own home being OK with my own thoughts and my own company. It's not a matter of being grateful or resentful it's a matter of still having questions inside of me I am still looking for something significant something bigger than myself that I can invest my energy in, this is a work in progress and I don't have an answer quite yet. Looking at last year's answer the jewelry box being stolen and house being broken into, it's a violation you don't ever get over I still cry when I think about the lost jewelry and what it meant to me it's a matter of attachment I know I have those people in my heart but somehow the material representation of them, being able to wear them on your body is something different I don't know about getting over it I don't know if I ever will the pain is a little bit less tears are still the same

The "significant experience" that affected all of us -- globally -- was the election of Donald J. Trump. I am grieved, horrified, apprehensive, and deeply embarrassed for my country. I still can't fathom it. I struggle to listen to other voices, to be open-minded, to be hopeful. But it's a mighty hard slog.

I admitted to my girlfriend and to my inner-most self that I am bi-sexual. For years I had struggled with my sexual identity, confused as to why I had attraction to both sexes. Many a night I lay awake and thought, "Why can't I just be clearly gay or straight?" Growing up in a very strict, episcopalian church that preached against the LGBT community, I refused to acknowledge any of my feelings and simply repressed. Now I realize that choosing to ignore a dilemma will simply make the challenge come back even stronger at a later date. I operated out of fear; loss of parents, loss of friends, loss of romantic involvements. Fear ran my life and as a result I was never truly able to become intimate with anyone. If I was unable to be honest with myself, how would I be able to be honest with another person? My girlfriend, who I love and who I am still with, made me realize that being myself was not only a huge turn on, but also required to live a productive and fearless existence. Sure, I haven't come out to my close friends or parents yet, but I do identify as Bi, and for me, that's enough right now. I can lay my head on the pillow every night knowing that I am honest with everyone in my life, including me.

This past year, I was lucky enough - and I truly mean lucky - to get to raft the Grand Canyon with 12 good friends from college. Spending two weeks rafting through the Canyon renewed my spirit in ways I did not anticipate. The Grand Canyon and its hundreds of adjoining secluded side canyons and creeks are profoundly beautiful. That wilderness where I went two weeks without seeing a manmade object other than those brought in by rafting groups and airplanes was awe-inspiring. Not awe inspiring in a meek sense of the word, but awe inspiring in the true sense. I felt closer to God, calmer in myself, more connected to my friends, and more thankful for my life and the fair Earth we live on than I had felt ever before. The trip was a joy. I am so thankful for collateral ways it has shaped my life - bringing me closer to friends, motivating me to get in better physical shape, and renewing my interest in environmental activism. The trip in itself, however, is a great gift I will treasure for the rest of my life.

I lost my virginity this year. It was fumbling, took multiple tries and I cried so much the first time we tried that we had to stop. I was so scared about what this meant for me and how it would make me different - impure or weak willed. I wanted to wait until I was married but I sacrificed that for the person I loved because I know they love me completely (and had waited four and a half years). In the end I can celebrate our love. Feeling so deeply and eternally intertwined with my beloved has removed all my anxieties.

Our company went under at the end of 2016. Though I'm thankful that I was brought on as a contractor at the acquiring company, it pushed me to move my life forward and fight for a new opportunity.

There are several. I again was able to get the lead in a musical! It was a great experience which I truly enjoyed. I think it deepened my appreciation for the theater and the responsibility of performers to their audience. The experience of a total eclipse was inspirational. Experiencing it in the company of others only made it all the better. It was interesting that I thought I might become an eclipse chaser, but there's so much to see in the world, Karen brought me back to earth on that one, for which I'm grateful. Reviewing last years's Question One was a revelation and a bit sad. I still visit Dad every week when I'm in town, but looking at the level of lucidity then vs. now reminds me that dementia doesn't really improve. I am grateful that I have been keeping journal of my visits, though, which documents those most memorable moments.

There were several significant experiences. I went to Rockfest and to the Heartland Pride Festival. I met a lady there, Dani. We hung out for awhile, but it didn't quite work out. We got a car loan and bought the trailblazer, but the beetle and the amigo are both out for the count. I've been driving my brother Graydon's crappy ford with the broken door handles. I'm not complaining, just stating fact. I found the green that I was looking for finally. Only took two years. We are in the process of saving up for the downpayment for a Semi truck. I am feeling fearful but hopeful at the same time.

My Mama died. Heartbreak beyond words. I knew this was coming, and had thought a lot about what it might look and feel like - but nothing prepares you for watching your Mama die. And then after the intensity of watching and caring for her as she died, I have to get used to living in the world without a Mama. Who will tell me what kind of flowers are in my yard? Who do I call when my heart hurts? Watching death might be the most significant experience of my life. We sat at her bedside for 5 days as she faded away and were there as she took her last breath. During those 5 days, I changed her diapers, administered morphine, and cried and cried. I watched my dad's heart break. I watched him grieve with an ache that shook him. Watching him loose his wife and best friend was almost worse than loosing my Mama. How did it affect me ? It just changed me. I'm different now. I'm a girl without a Mama.

Bye to relationship feels freeing. Happy it's over. Happy inside for my puppy. Fulfilled having her in my life.

Running my first half marathon (the DC Rock and Roll half) was one of the proudest moments of my life this year. It was the culmination of so much determination, hard work, and support from my circle of friends doing the race with me. The rock and roll half/5k crew encouraged me and held me accountable. I am incredibly grateful for the experience of completing this physical FEAT in 26 degree weather. It was only a few years ago that I watched my first race (the St. Louis half marathon) and was in awe of all the runners. I never, ever imagined that I would be able to do what they did. And I mother fucking made it my new years resolution and DID THAT. I felt so inspired and physically/mentally tough as I kept my body moving through that race. I took in the views of my wonderful city, Washington D.C., and all of the funny/punny signs (which were so hilariously political - e.g., "If Trump can run, so can you!"). I felt so happily in my body even though by the end I was ready to literally shut down, ha. To cap it all off I got to feast with all of my best friends from high school to college. I could not have had more fun living my values (physical endurance, discipline, teamwork, resilience, and fun). I can't wait for my NEXT half - in less than 3 weeks! Look at me... I'm a muthafuckin runner!

The biggest thing that happened to me this past year is purchasing a house together with my daughter. I have to say, it was a very stressful experience and I did not know if we would be able to do it - and remodel the basement into my apartment. I am extremely grateful that it did work and that I will be able to complete the basement remodel into my "forever home". It gives me great peace of mind to know that as I age, my family will be nearby. I worry a bit because it has taken ALL of my money - and then some - to get this done, but overall, I am grateful. It is a beautiful home in a beautiful area - I look forward to exploring more!

Moving back to Australia I'm grateful for the work opportunity, for my friends and to spend more time with family. I'm resentful towards my boss who couldn't manage her business that lead to this decision, and I'm fearful that I've caged myself into an industry with nowhere to go in Australia

I had surgery, a craniotomy, to remove a small brain tumor that was not cancerous. The tumor was causing me great facial pain due to its position near the nerve. I am incredibly grateful that a medical resolution was possible, and they completed with no complications. I am alive! I am free of pain! The process of recovery was not something I could understand until I experienced it - the fatigue, and impact of drugs. Just took longer than I expected to get back to myself. And, in that recovery time, many things that I typically managed slipped past me. Financial things personally and at work. Still catching up. And, so so so grateful that I had the surgery!

My son was accepted into Med school and the University had a ceremony whereby the med students would have jackets put on them by the faculty and the parents could hear the students recite the Hippocratic Oath to the assembly. He worked very hard to get accepted and I was thrilled to be invited to watch him embark on his new adventure.

I slipped back into my eating disorder. It isn't as bad as it has been in the past but I'm still so upset that I let myself relapse. I can't even remember why I did it now. I think it was for an event that I didn't even end up going to financial problems. I regret it so much because I still haven't gone back to how well I was doing previously.

I converted. My reaction was different than I expected, less powerful. But when I'm at services or reading something Jewish-related, I can feel very connected to my people.

In the past year, I heard back from every single college I applied to, the first of which was my absolute number one school...which I didn't get into. I remember being completely distraught. I was sitting in the den with my mother at the time, watching TV, and I kept watching for five or ten minutes just hoping to ignore what I'd just read, and then I went right upstairs and took out my physics homework even though it was Christmas break and start working on it, because that had to be why I hadn't gotten in--because I hadn't worked hard enough, because I'd done things like watch television instead of work on my homework. Of course, three or four months later I heard back from Cornell, and now here I am, and I can't be more thankful that I didn't get into Yale.

My youngest granddaughter expressed that she felt it's important for us to spend time together. This warmed my heart.

My uncle passed away last year. Uncle Clancy battled a cancer diagnosis for years. There was a time when we were confident he had overcome the challenge and a time when we knew we should prepare for the worst. While I knew I needed to brace myself for his passing, I wasn't prepared for the torrent of emotions that flooded me for months. He was the sort of man that was both impossible to miss and easy to overlook. There was always a profound possession of awareness that seemed to inform Clancy's viewpoints, but he rarely shared them - at least not with me. His death sent shock waves throughout our family. It triggered and reopened old wounds that had never really closed. The Walsh family tended to them with obsequious and heartbreaking regularity. I'm not sure I can ever forgive some of them for it. Clancy was always the eye of that storm - relentlessly calm despite being the center of his own family's malevolence. Even so, I know how much it hurt him. I recall my mother and by association, my siblings, doing our best to convey our loyalties through unspoken behaviors. Even so, I deeply regret never telling him directly how much it pained me know that he was being mistreated by his brothers and sisters. By his Father. Sometimes I feel I played a hand in that by not being more forthcoming with my own compassion towards him. Death has a way of restructuring our priorities, albeit temporarily.It allows us to perceive the past and present with a different level of clarity, but it seems that more often than not we fail to learn from our observations in those moments. For my part, it compelled me to reevaluate my own relationship with death. I am grateful for that. On my desk at work is a small book, titled the "Little Book of Wisdom". My family holds the firm belief that every book requires an inscription, regardless of circumstance. The inscription for this particular book indicates that it was a Christmas gift given by us to our Uncle 15 years ago. Nearly every day, I open and read a few pages from it. It helps me remember my Uncle, and appreciate him. I'll always be grateful for that as well.

Well, I turned 50! I'm grateful to be alive and in good health. Something about 50 made me think about looking forward to what I want the next 50 years to look like. I wish I had done that for the previous 50 years, but, oh well. I guess I could say I'm inspired. Grateful. Relieved.

The election. Need I say more. It rocked my world and I don't know if I can live as carefree again. On the one hand, it has inspired me and led me to engage with others as passionate about fighting this rise of nationalism and neo-fascism. On the other hand, it has touched in me places of deep pessimism and despair about the human condition. I have felt much more anger every day this year than I have ever felt before and I grow more resentful about this difficult emotion. Sometimes the anger leads me to engage in important action but sometimes it just sits uncomfortably inside of me.

DT became president. I am not grateful. I am apprehensive. But yes I am inspired to more political activity myself when I am in the US and when I am at home.

I joined a band with a bunch of driven people and we're doing well; Crashing Atlas. This could be the chance I've been looking for to play music for a living. #inspired

I struggled with severe and debilitating anxiety for several months. It was the scariest thing I've ever experienced. I felt helpless, out of control and near death. I couldn't function as a wife or a mother. I couldn't eat nor sleep. I have since moved past it hopefully for good. I certainly have a much different understanding of mental illness and a much deeper love for my husband.

I sold my flat. Elated after a struggle trying to sell it.

In March, my beloved husband was diagnosed with non-obstructive azoospermia. I will not bear his child. I don't think I've even begun to understand the ways in which this has affected me. Unsurprisingly, I'm full of rage. Mostly however, I'm simply full of grief - for our the loss of our dream of biological parenthood and for this person who will never exist, who has haunted me these past few months. I often wonder if I will feel profound happiness again. That said, I am grateful that our marriage is thriving and can't imagine my life without him.

The moment I found out I was pregnant. It effected me in every way possible. I'm so grateful for this miracle that is growing in me!

I had to accept defeat, though I did an internship abroad. It felt delusional, but I am grateful I had that possibility. But I also had to learn to be brave. I found the courage to leave the person I had been with for 6 years because I no longer loved him and I didn't want to illude him. It was a tough moment and I felt like a horrible person. I learnt to love again this year and I learnt to accept new challenges, I learnt not to hold my feelings again, and I feel blessed for it.

I started NFTY & HS this year! Both are amazing. A fantastic summer with my last at Eisner, first leadership summit, Maccabi games, and last Squanto. JV soccer!

The election. Election night was so painful that I’ve only recently started being able to talk / think about it without getting very depressed. It affected the whole country. It’s affected my relationship with my mother. I still feel so betrayed by her support of Trump. No amount of me telling her how much it could hurt me or my marriage to David would get her to even listen to me. She insisted that I was ‘brainwashed’ by the mainstream media.

A three week trip from mid May to early June was very rewarding. There were three segments - I attended my 50th College reunion along with a pre-reunion. During these, I met or expanded significant relationships which have expanded my circle of close friends. It also allowed me and many others to help put our lives into a context of time. The second week was in Shenandoah National Park. I spent time with myself processing the reunion and figuring out what I wanted to do next. I focused on Spontaneity, Risk, Action and Discipline. (SRAD) Being more with those characteristics. I also saw some Oberlin and the Weisheimers who I hadn't seen since Marieka was in the womb. The third week was with Marieka and Kaila in Chicago. We shopped, saw a play, the museums, a woman's soccer game and just hung out. It was a special time. It reaffirmed my desire to spend time with them.

i realised that although so many people come and go in my life, and my people i mean who have come very close to my heart, no one can give solace quite like family. past year i realised my own importance in relationships, finally accepted that i have boundary issues and felt the relief that came with its acceptance. also realized i can loose weight, stick to diet, exercise and everything healthy, when it is the right time astrologically lol! Som things cant be fought, but that doesnt mean u wont try :)

Portland is significant. I challenged myself to be on my own, find a new way to love myself, laugh, be free of judgment and find my worth. I'm grateful I could do something like that. I'm proud for what I did and wish I even took more chances. I don't want to regret not trying things or live in fear. I also am proud of how I put myself out there w men. I guess if I step back I am a bit inspired and it's time to set some new challenges

Trump's election felt like it rocked our foundation. John was deeply disturbed. I was shocked and, perhaps, more resilient, but still feel like I've spent months reckoning with what it means about who this country is and what the work is that needs to be done to heal/change it. It's made me think a lot about the kind of citizens we want to be for the girls, too. Just totally soul-crushing and paradigm-shifting in so many ways.

I became a father again, which is an amazing experience. To have your heart grow to accommodate the love of two children is fascinating to live through. I am so grateful, albeit tired, to now have two sons instead of just one, and I'm delighted daily by how different my second son is from the first.

I wish I could say my significant experience was having my son, but the first thing that comes to mind is, "I guess, needing to call the police on my husband and restarting both of our lives separately." I am relieved, and in a way grateful for how things went. Had I ever managed the courage and gull to leave on my own, I wouldn't have been able to access the priority list for subsidized housing in a new city - and who knows what would have happened to myself and my son then. And likewise, the husband wouldn't have received as much of a reason to reconsider the frame of reference for his life.

Death. First Sage. Glen Sage, my mom and dad's best friend, who I've known since the day I was born, passed away. Then, my best friend at work, my work husband, my sweetheart, and someone that I might have married if there was no Prentice, Mike Turner, died suddenly. It has been the most difficult time of my life, other than when Bryce died. I haven't known if I would be able to go on sometimes. I haven't known how to keep moving forward. It's been rough. Every time I look at one of the trinkets on my desk that Mikey gave me, it gives me a longing heart to just hug him one more time. Every time I think of Sage and his silliness, or I go to a union activity, or I even just see a bald man, my heart breaks a little. I loved him so much. Life is so short. We aren't promised another day on this Earth. I plan to live this life to the fullest and love as completely as I can. I will do what I can to love everyone to the fullest and share that love in any way possible. I will spread love, not hate. I will fight for justice. I refuse to let haters bring me down. And I will keep flying.

My dad died 3 months ago. It was an 18 month decline with a rare cancer. I was with him the last 3 days of his life, and watching him suffer was agony. I had PTSD afterwards, unable to turn off the images of his thin, sunken, skeletal body that replayed on a loop in my mind. After some grief counseling I've made some progress towards releasing that trauma and letting him go. He was never that tightly bound to this world, the type of soul that longs to float away. We had music playing in his room and he passed away during "Blackbird" by the Beetles. "Take these sunken eyes and learn to see. All your life, you were only waiting for this moment to be free." Two months ago Hurricane Harvey flooded the building where we live and we are now homeless for 3-4 months as a result. This has meant a lot of quality time with Mom, staying with her in the now-too-big house, helping her sell Dad's tools and get the house ready to sell. Being together and grieving together is healing. In a year of grief and turmoil what remains is love. We have no home. I currently have no job as I've been forced to take a leave of absence during our exile. I now have no father. What I have is love. Loving husband, loving mother, loving friends, and a laser focus on what is important. Love.

I stopped hating my job. I still don't love it, but I think I just want a career change. I'm not even sure what/where/how but I think I'm in need of a big life change. This is also very scary because I turned 40 this year and I fear that it's too late for a big change like that. Luckily, I am reading all kinds of stories about people being happier about a career change late in life. Strange how this started out about me liking my job but turned out to be about a career change.

The Trump election. Over the past several years my eyes have been opened to the way capitalism, patriarchy, and white supremecy brutalize and crush people around the world. The Trump election was not so much a turning point as it was a concrete example of the crisis much of the world's population is going through. It's a crisis of meaning and value. I am trying to educate myself in how this crisis came about and what it means. I'm trying to establish what I value and how I can enact those values at a local level. I'm trying to understand what influence I have and how to use it. I am afraid and anxious, but that is a condition of living in this world at this time. I feel like I have less to lose, and am willing to sacrifice more. That is helping me to move foward and focus.

I changed my life this year. I have taken control of my health and it changes everything. I'm excited and inspired and I have goals. I'm confident that I can succeed, but sometimes I do feel some resent about foods I love making me miserable. It is what it is. I CAN DO THIS

We got a puppy. I am very grateful for her. I didn't want a puppy, and there are times I am resentful, but it is nice to be needed. And adored. I know my children love me, and I'm pretty sure my husband loves me, but neither adore me. Daisy is sweet, adorable and a pleasure to have around.

Where to start... I had major surgery to remove a large but - happily - benign tumour. However during the operation the surgeon found that I had extensive endometriosis. I'd always wondered whether I had this but there had been so many opportunities for its diagnosis and no hint that it was present... that I'd dismissed the idea. Turns out that this was a mistake. It explains so many things in my life, primarily infertility and just why a lot of stuff has felt like such a struggle. They say the average time to a diagnosis of endo is about nine years. I'm not sure whether mine was 25 years or about ten minutes. I feel immensely grateful for a wonderful surgeon and excellent medical team, and absolutely furious with myself for not pushing earlier to get this sorted out. The impact on my life has been catastrophic; I'm childless and have spent a lot of time beating myself up for being pathetic and lazy when I actually had a medical condition which could have been managed.

It would have to be the big blow out with Steven in August. He has such anger and hurt, but it came out with poison words and both Phil and I engaged with him. I wish we had just let him vent and taken the higher road. It was a terrible situation and made me very sad. For the sake of mom, we were able to get done what we needed to do, but I'm not hopeful at all of any kind of relationship with him in the future. Very sad and such wasted time, for sure.

I auditioned for a project I was really excited about - my first audition in at least 10 years. The process, from putting cover letter & resume together, to taking headshots, to the actual audition itself was exhilarating. The rejection was expected, but confirmed that I could never be a full time performer - I tried not to be disappointed, but of course I was mildly crushed. I am inspired to try and get more creativity and expression back into my life.

This past year I started college. It was obviously a drastic change in my life. A new city, new people, and I didn't have any of my friends from home to rely on. It's much harder to make friends than I thought, and the first two weeks were hard socially. But I'm grateful I have the opportunity to attend college, and that I'm finally starting to feel comfortable here. I'm still trying to find a place I fit in, but I'm working on it and making friends the best I can.

I am down to my last account to draw monthly money from. This should last a little over 3 years. It took several months to get everything straight. It is making me look at the life I am living and how am I going to support myself. Yes, I am grateful that I have a truly wonderful life. I am relieved because now I get to figure out what is truly important to me. There is nothing to resent. I am inspired to move forward.

I went and saw Hamilton with a good friend. She flew to Chicago to see it with me on my birthday. It wasn't a life changing experience, but it's significance was in the simplicity of having a fun evening with a friend and celebrating my birthday. So much of this past year has been defined by stress and chaos and burn out, having one evening where I didn't feel any of that was very significant in a positive way.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Haven't gotten to the grateful stage yet as just had surgery a few weeks ago. I've gone through different emotions but I'm feeling good overall about the way I'm handling this and it's already highlighted some valuable lessons that I've been learning

I started dating a girl and am conflicted if I want to be a relationship right now. The distance is complicated as are other things.

Shift is happening this year more so than in others - I have dedicated myself to exercising again after seeing my photos from my 50th birthday and seeing the weight I had gained. I am now down 15 pounds, stronger, healthier and happier. I don't know why I moved away from it or what the barriers were? I do know that menopause was a huge factor and I needed to up the exercise. I am thankful that I had a group of warriors that engaged in the process with me - we are all better for it and love the time we spend hiking every weekend and the classes we go to to keep mind body and soul centered and happy! This is a live long passion and journey that I must continue - in the words of Darwin, adapt or die!

A significant experience that has happened over this past year is the month I spent at Kutz camp. It affected me because it expanded my Jewish community to people across America, it made me love NFTY even more to the point where I want to run for regional board this winter, and it opened up the opportunity of going to Israel for my second semester of this school year. I am so grateful for this experience as it has shaped a lot of my current life.

I lost 25 pounds. And it has been the single most mind fuck I've ever experienced in my life. Am I grateful? Yes. Relieved? Yes. Inspired? Eh. Resentful. Yes. I'm so glad I lost the weight and grateful I went through the process. It has taught me so much, and as a result, I have more compassion for those going through the process. I understand how hard it is. Not just physically, but mentally and spiritually. The in and out of worrying about every single piece of food you put in your mouth and what it might do to you is exhausting. I've never wanted to NOT care about anything more in my life. I have wished often to go back to the way I was before I started this journey. That being said, I wouldn't want to be 25 pounds heavier, either. So it is a constant trade off. Enjoy the foods I love and make me feel alive? Enjoy the body I've worked so hard to create and makes me feel good about myself? Yep. Twisty mind fuck.

I have learned and Actually Put Into Practice that I don't need to be right all the time. i am relieved and grateful for this knowledge. It's taking a lot of pressure off of myself.This is not so much a significant single experience as realization that took a month or 6 weeks to arrive.

So very many things!! The two biggest things that happened to me gave me completely opposite feelings! However, the question said A significant thing, so I will follow the rules and only do one. In December, my boyfriend and I broke up. It was rough, but looking at my 10Q answers from last year, I shouldn't have been surprised. Ultimately, I'm relieved, but it's left me questioning a bunch more. Am I cut out for marriage? Will I get married? Am I going to have to settle? I am mad that he was the one to call it quits, and he cheated on me, which almost makes it worse. I know it's for the best, and I know that we are not meant for each other, but I really liked having someone. Maybe that answers most of my questions...

The most significant thing that happened this last year is Trump winning the presidency. I have so much fear now. Social constructs seem to be falling. People saying and doing horrible things to each other because of the color of their skin, who they love, where they're from, etc. I can't understand it. Intellectually I get it, people are angry because they are disenfranchised and want someone to blame. But I really can't understand hating someone you don't even know. I feel afraid to speak my beliefs. I feel afraid to protest. I just have so much fear. I've even considered getting a gun. I am so against people having handguns, but I'm worried that when society crashes we will have nothing with which to defend ourselves. I will have nothing to defend my family with. I've thought many times since November that preppers have the right idea. A quiet out of the way piece of land with a small house on it to retreat to, filled with provisions and supplies, so we can get away from the kook-asses that are out there right now. RG would be against it, calling it crazy and a waste of money. His theory is if society falls, do we really want to continue to exist in anarchy? Well, I certainly don't want to just lay down and die. A piece of property, maybe 30 acres, with a river/stream and some woods, a small house, solar with a generator, good sight lines, and the ability to get to it quickly. This is the idea of safety for me right now.

Seeing the migration of Sandhill Cranes in Indiana & the Trumpeter Swans & Snow Geese at the Middle Creek Reserve in PA were both so wonderful. They gave me hope that the natural world continues in its pacing through the seasons, even as humanity treads heavily on their turf.

I was diagnosed with adult ADHD. I am relieved and optimistic that there was a reason for my deficiencies and I have something named to overcome.

I am grateful for 10q from the start because sometimes life gives you too many significant life events at once to process. In the last year, I survived 2 car accidents, one of which left me with such a bad concussion I was on disability for 6 months and had to leave my vocation in the ICU for an outpatient clinic while waiting for my brain to heal. As hard as it is to say it, I am grateful for this experience in many ways. (Hey, life is suffering, right?) The concussion stole my intellect, my ability to work, my ability to tell a story, my ability to even go to the grocery store myself. It forced me to recon with my self worth: who the hell am I if I'm not productive? Is life worth living if you can't learn, contribute, help others? The experience completely inverted my life's values. Now that I am recovered, I still value my intellect, my work, my contributions to society and others. But I realize they do not define me. Having my ego forcibly exposed, torn away to bare all my insecurities - that has made me wiser. I hope it will make me a better nurse, partner, child, and eventual parent (g-d-willing). Meanwhile! My three best friends had their first born this year and they are all healthy and wonderful and brilliant and I would do anything for them. I moved to NYC and have so many close friendships here that fill me with joy. My boyfriend of 4 years proposed and although we are stressed planning the wedding, what an incredible gift to be planning our life together! We got a perfect fur baby Maui, an orange Siberian Forest cat that simply melts our hearts. And my fiancé is stressed, but he is doing what he loves and making a difference in this crazy world by working for the mayor of the most influential city in America. My life is absolutely charmed. I have my health, family, friendship, employment, and security.

How can I answer anything except the election of Donald Trump? Ugh. So, definitely not grateful or relieved. The only thing we really can do is turn it into something inspiring, right? Seeing people get involved, even get angry, get motivated to DO something has been inspiring. Seeing how this election has resulted in people banding together to get their voices heard. It's like protesting has been rediscovered as a legitimate form of expression. I see it in my students: an awareness of politics and a desire for social justice at a level beyond anything in my 20 years of teaching.

As much as i want to say something positive here, the truth is the most significant thing that has happened to me this year includes getting my heart broken, watching myself drown in a terribly unhealthy relationship, and ultimately becoming pregnant and getting an abortion. I was raised incredibly southern baptist so this true felt like a separating sin. I am both relieved and resentful. Relieved because i was not ready to have children, resentful because i wanted to make that choice in a more healthy manner with a partner that respected me. I'm also still grieving. Almost 5 months later and i wonder if i'll ever heal. Ironically, this is the first time I've written about it.

Kailey and Caroline left this year. After thinking about I realized it's not their abscence solely weighing on me but a sense of behindness and future hopelessness. I'm still tying to find a person whom I'm interested in and attracted to and who is crazy about me. I think I'd trade most anything for this. Maybe not my family, whom I'm glad to have.

A significant experience in the past year was the combination of turning 50 years old and getting surgery to address long-term ob/gyn problems by removing an ovary plus some very large cysts and having a uterine ablation. The surgery was long overdue. I had heavy bleeding and scary menstrual problems for years which depleted me and caused anemia. I had so many tests over the years and always found out the same: non-cancerous tumors, cysts, lumps, bumps. In each case, the fear and concern that it could be a fast-moving disease were palpable. I needed to take control but was scared about going into menopause quickly and also worried about the invasive surgery itself. It turned out the recovery was very challenging. It was like being postpartum. I was on bedrest and had bloating, weakening of muscles, quick hormonal changes, and an awful case of sciatica which caused agony. After recovery, I felt better than ever. I am now exercising, strong, regaining core strength and ready to face the next half of my life. I thought I felt neutral about turning 50 but in retrospect, I was very ambivalent. I plan to have a huge party when I turn 51.

I left my job at Oakes Management. It was a difficult decision, required letting go of a dream's unrealized potential. I felt guilt and regret about the failure to become a worker owned coop. I poured a lot into leaving the place a little better than i found it and so the staff would have all the information I had gathered. It was in the end liberating/ relieving (esp to text all my tenants that I was no longer the PM) but also sad.

The past year has been a chaotic time in politics. It was November 8, 2016, Election Night. I went into that night confident that we were breaking a glass ceiling. I knew Hillary Clinton was going to be the next President of the United States. But no. I was wrong. As the night went on, it became more clear that this was not going to be a close race. In fact, as the night went on, I had to remove myself from my living room where I was sitting with all of my friends. It was time to go into bed, alone, and watch the news and wallow in my own sorrows. Donald Trump was going to be the next President of the United States. Donald Trump is the current President of the United States. It wasn't easy to sink in. I was upset, distraught, embarrassed, and in denial. It wasn't fair. It wasn't even possible. As the days have gone by since that dreary/nightmareish election day, Donald Trump has threatened the legitimacy of the position of president. He has tried, and failed, three times to repeal Obamacare and take away millions of peoples health insurance that they depend on. We are on the brink of nuclear war with North Korea, and Trump finds it such a serious topic of conversation that he nicknamed Kim Jong Un "Rocket Man." How did we get here? I am currently reading Hillary Clinton's book, "What Happened," reliving the pain that I felt on November 8. It's a sad time for a lot of people right now. We'll be okay though, right?

Hurricane Irma - evacuating to Tampa and coming home to no power. Felt love of family, grace of those around me. Thankful, relieved that it is over. Fearful of another.

I finally launched my novel, Missing Tyler into the world. It was tremendous. A birthing experience. It took an amazing amount of work and then to watch the sales tick up, to finally be paid for my writing, was fantastic, humbling, incredible. The biggest feeling was the connection to my soul of finally being able to legitimately claim the title of author. I never realized how deeply I craved that. So many people were shocked that I'd written a book. It was like I'd revealed that underneath my Clark Kent exterior was Superman.

I completed my yoga teacher training in June! After a year of hard work, I was a bit burnt out on yoga and stopped practicing :( But, now in September, I'm jazzed up about it again. I'm doing more yoga and starting to put together systems to teach private yoga. Feeling inspired!

I finally started a new mosaic, an image of Cali, Rachel's dog. It turned out really well, although right at the end the grout made it look bad, so I had to paint the grout. I finally took Mom's advice and got back to work, and it feels really good. However I still have a lot of insecurities to work through. A close second would be sticking with meditation for something like 4 months now. That feels really good and it is helping me so much to stay grounded.

Since the most recent stolen election in the US, I have come to realize that only grassroots organizing will turn the tide now. Only with completely full and open hearts can we achieve a complete transformation of the human condition. It has been said that the next Buddha will be a collective. That collective is emerging now in many forms. May our heart inspired actions lead to a truly restorative and regenerative future.

Our store's volume was downgraded, and the entire chain did away with full-time sales people. I was downgraded to a part-time position. This means I no longer get vacation time or sick time, and I have to use my meager retirement account to pay for health insurance. This makes me increasingly worried about being able to maintain my healthcare relationships, obtain my medications, and deal with any expensive emergencies.

About a month ago, in August, my grandmother passed away. It had been sudden, yet expected. What had started out as pneumonia morphed into various ailments until she was in a coma. My father spent about a month with her before her passing and helped around the house. My sister went down to visit her as well, as was my grandmother’s wish. I, however, never got the invite. Nor did I want one. Since I was old enough to talk I had not gotten along with my grandmother, childishly nicknamed Mimi. On paper, she was an impressive woman. First female post master of Alaska, lung cancer and Katrina survivor, and stern Louisiana mother. But in person…I couldn’t stand her. She was obnoxiously loud and annoyingly self-centered, not to mention racist. One of my earliest memories with her consists of intense, red-faced, spit riddled yelling. She had invited me to play Operation and then blamed the buzzer going off on the iron supplements she was taking. Even my 6-year-old self could see through the lie and I wasn’t going to be played like a fool. What started as a simple impugnation turned into a board flipping argument that only ended when my mom had to forcibly remove me from the room. The next day we were slated to visit the Adam’s mansion in Quincy at her request. To retaliate further, I decided to eat my tickets on the way to the historical site. Piece by piece I slowly ate the hard, crunchy paper, washing it down with loathing and grape juice. Our relationship was always like two defensive featherweights, slowly circling each other, keeping our distance, and then throwing combinations intended to do damage. So, is it any surprise that standing over her coffin, I didn’t grieve for her. I never cried or asked why. In all honesty, I thought she treated my grandfather terribly, subjugating him to whatever she wanted. I was happy he was free from her tyranny. My grandfather can’t walk well so it has always been my job to give him an arm. Walking him down the church aisle was like a weird inversion of a wedding; a son giving away his grandfather to a dead bride. He braced against my arm while straining to fight tears. I still didn’t grieve for my grandmother, but my grandfather’s heavy eye lids being overrun tears elucidated something I hadn’t considered. I wasn’t there for the memory of my grandmother. I was there for him.

Started working at a new job. I am grateful, relieved, inspired, and still recovering from the psychological wear and tear of the last job. Yet, I am grateful for the friends I made, the experiences I had, and all that I learned.

I became Catholic. It was only a 26 year long journey to get there. I rediscovered God in a way that is more powerful than I could imagine. I am so grateful to have this new connection to the Lord and my family.

I am inspired to make some changes in my life. Last month I mentally told Los Angeles that it had 6 months to give me a reason to stay. I am seeking inspiration on where to go, or to stay. But there will no longer be a passively drifting through life here. Staying here will either be intentional, or I will find a new adventure.

My Prince and I had our relationship made official by drawing up ourtestaments and cohabitation contract. Not as romantic as getting married perhaps, but our own decision. The actual signing of the documents was not as impressive as having to draw up your will, having to consider living without the other, dying yourself... If it wasn't clear enough before, this experience has shown me how much I love this man, and how much he must love me. And how very much we are loved by our families and friends, as shown by the well-wishings and flowers we received in abundance!

I had transferred to a new team at work, using new technologies I were (at the time) unfamiliar with, and being nearly completely detached from my previous team. The transfer process was a bit complex: for the first 2 months or so, I worked in an ad-hoc team, creating a special project for the workplace. After those 2 months, I transferred to an existing team, replacing on of their members (who had been, for 2 months, filling my vacant position - a 'trade' of team-members, if you will). My thoughts on the experience are ambivalent: on the one hand, because I was taken off a project where I had nearly complete knowledge of the material and the technologies, and into a project where I had, well, the opposite, I was terrified (still a bit am; the 'special project' is in maintenance, currently by me alone) for a long time. Leaving behind a large amount of beloved co-workers and a lax work environment, to join a team and a department where I knew only a handful of people and the work situation was much more organized, was also quite a shock. On the other hand, joining the new project and the new team(s) has taught me a great deal of new technologies and ideas, and correct work practices - which I have been lacking previously (hopefully not lacking them yet) - and improved me as a person. Though I'm still more comfortable around my old team, I'm slowly getting to know the new department and its people, and hopefully we'll become closer in the future. So, in short: somewhat grateful, a bit resentful as well (I won't lie).

Last 2016, I went through a very painful breakup from a long-term relationship. It was very, very tough and it affected all aspects of my life. I experienced almost all possible emotions getting through it, with some ups and definitely a lot of downs. I felt completely lost. I probably hit my lowest points throughout, but this journey taught me how to love myself. Now I can say I'm doing way better. I'm slowly balancing how I live, getting my act together, and slowly moving on to bigger things.

I stayed here the whole summer and did not travel to Aotearoa New Zealand to escape the heat here and to keep up my kiwi connections. It has been hard. The heat is terrible and caused me minor health problems like heat rashes but after much searching and experimenting I found a great lotion for my skin. I was very disciplined about walking with the dog in the early hours and eating a later breakfast at home after my prayers. Several times I realised that my presence was helpful and even necessary. Reinforcing that I made the right decision to stay here. So I am both grateful and a bit resentful since Alon's work accident has meant a lot of extra work. (Though I am keeping in mind many if not most women do more and for longer than I - perspective)

I met residents living in a drug rehab who's story of abuse matched my own. I felt a mix of relieved and sympathetic

I quit my dance troupe. It was a HUGE relief. I realized that what I wanted and what they wanted were different. And as a result, I was getting all the work piled on me and zero cooperation from the group, which was making me incredibly resentful. In addition, one of the members was constantly bullying me, and as someone who has PTSD from bullying, that isn't acceptable. And even when I spoke up about it, everyone said I was reading things wrong, being too sensitive, etc. And finally not putting up with that shit anymore has been SUPER nice. And finally other people NOT in the troupe have seen it and have asked me why she acts that way towards me, so now I know, too, that it ISN'T me being sensitive, I have been gaslighted... AGAIN.

I found out that I had not received a pay rise or a bonus when other staff had. It was hurtful as I believe I do a good job (so do they) and yet was not appreciated. It amongst some other matters happening has made me question my purpose here.

I finally completed my conversion to Judaism. It took a lot of time (2.5+ years), but it was so worth the wait. I've felt for a long time that I was Jewish, but the work and study I've done, as well as the conversations I've shared with my Rabbi meant everything. And now I can enjoy 5778 as a full-fledged member of the tribe.

I was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma (skin cancer.) Chemo was painful and downright ugly. The dermatologist said that the therapeutic level of chemo was when my skin and underlying tissue looked like ground hamburger meat. It really made me scared about cancer in the rest of my body. I then had an ovarian cancer scare. It turned out not cancer but scar tissue/adhesions from my two c-sections and hysterectomy. They had grown around my colon and had my colon squashed and fused up against my left pelvic wall. It took them an hour to even find my ovary! I was, of course, relieved that it wasn't cancer. I do feel much better after the surgery, I didn't even realize that I had been feeling so poorly. My take-away from these experiences was a renewed sense of gratitude for being alive. The small things such as grocery shopping, lifting my 1 1/2 year old granddaughter, spending time with my family for even a few short minutes....they are all such tremendous gifts. These trials did bring into sharper focus my sense of my own mortality. I am inspired to do my best to be healthy and to actually spend my time on the important things.

I decided to have a baby on my own and after one unsuccessful IVF attempt I got a positive pregnancy result. I am very grateful and content as well as excited.

There have been 2 significant experiences in the last year. In January, we closed on our home! We are home owners! Well, we still owe $220,000 before we OWN it, but we own it. It's OUR HOUSE! I wish I could say it's our forever home, but as of now, I love it, and wile will be here for a while. I need to start some of my DIY home makeover ideas. The second experience... getting a positive pregnancy test. Then another, then 4 more. It was a rocky start. Thinking I was further along then getting bad news at the ultrasound... but everything turned out just fine and baby boy will be here in about 10 weeks.

John took his own life. I feel like his loss has left a hole in my life that I didn't know could exist. While I'm not sure it would have changed anything, I hope he knew how much people cared and how much he was loved. I can't help but wonder how long he carried this option within him. Did he over hear any of our conversations on the subject over the years? How many people conceal this level of pain?

I lost my partner, Nick. It's hard to even anticipate writing about without feeling flooded by emotions. It's been almost 10 months. I miss him. I still can't believe it happened, that he's gone. It feels impossible. I've said it enough times at this point, but I do believe the human brain can't comprehend gone–gone is outside of our experience. When I get flashes of recognition (similar to feeling like I can understand the size of the universe), knowing this doesn't make that realization any easier on my heart. The cadence the sadness hits me at has changed since December, but it feels the same. It hit me today as I was picking some angel cards. It made me wonder how it's possible that losing someone can create such a deep hurt. He was just a person. I am just a person. Who cares about us? And if no one cares, why bother allowing us to have so much pain. How is it possible that anything is so critical to my life that it can tear me apart in this way. And how the fact that it can must mean we're so tied together. I'd do anything to get him back. I'd give my own life. I was obsessed with finding a time machine, with thinking about how I could have saved him. Those thoughts have passed, at least in my conscious life. Now I have dreams where he doesn't love me anymore or where I know he's going to die and can't save him. Now I know I can't undo what happened, because I'm a different person–I can't go back to a time where my current self didn't exist. How could I be then with what I know now? Or maybe there's some cosmic rule that once enough things have happened in the world since the event, it would be too hard to undo. Sometimes I want to know why this happened. There is no answer that means anything to me. Strangely, I do feel less nihilistic though than I did before losing him. Maybe it's the power of the love I feel for him and the sadness I feel without him, the way nothing matters more than that, not even my own life. Or the love and support I've felt from other people. I have felt both the ferocity of my own life force burning, the way joy wants to cascade out of me in the same moment tears fill my eyes, and the way it is all meaningless without loving people. I have learned nothing matters as much as love. I'm not above it all–I have all the same challenges as I did before–but I do find it easier to come back to that. For that, sometimes stronger than I feel the shock and the horror, I feel gratitude.

Oh man there are a few whether it was court, school or classes. But the most significant is love. I discovered what it feels like to love someone and to be loved by someone (and I'm forty!). Jewel and I met because she was my best friends girlfriend. Her and hit it off right away. We would secretly hope that we would be able to talk throughout the week. When she wasn't around I thought about her and when she was on the phone I didn't want to hang up. Her and him finally broke up but we knew already that we were going to pursue one another. I finally told him and him and I broke up but her and I are still together and are madly in love. She is so funny, smart, joyful, kind, thought provoking, and so beautiful that her sexy meter is pegged at its greatest capacity. My first love and the only love I ever want. No matter how many letters I command to crawl across this screen their formation can't recreate the beauty she brings to my heart and soul. So in short, the most significant thing that happened this past year was the universe finally delivered in my dream girl.

Jemma and I both left our respective jobs to go travelling. It is long overdue and we are currently in the middle of it so haven't analysed it really. As usual we have put a lot of pressure on ourselves for it to be the best, butso far it has been amazing. I have been surprised that my feelings of anxiety have remained the same (not bad but there) even when I have 0 responsibility. Overall I am feeling this is a great opportunity to take time for myself and review my way of thinking and future plans. Hopefullly this will lead to a feeling of being inspired.

I was laid off from my first real job. It was terrifying, and stressful, and I wouldn't say that I'm ultimately grateful for it, but it has allowed me to reflect a lot on what I want to be devoting my time towards and inspired me to embrace instability and hold out for spectacular. Remember that you're an awesome person, and you'll always be able to land an average job, so have the courage to strive for extraordinary, even if it means feeling uncomfortable for a time. Also, you have to make yourself happy and not cave into familial pressures to conform to certain standards of success.

В мае умерла от онкологии сестра Марина - это было огромным потрясением. Я была уверена, что она победит болезнь. За месяц до похорон моей сестры у меня диагностировали рак также. Это событие очень изменило меня. Моя жизнь изменилась. Как будто кто-то поставил мою прежнюю жизнь на паузу и включил новую. Тяжелый период. Но я не злюсь. Напротив это сделало меня добрее. Мир стал красивее. Я все ждала благополучного периода, чтобы стать мамой. Дождалась. У меня не будет детей. Мне уже сделали одну операцию в августе. Скоро предстоит следующая операция, которая окончательно решит меня возможности родить ребенка. Но это не решает меня возможности стать мамой для приемных деток. Были и другие новости. У моего брата родился сын. Моя мама мечтала о внуках, и теперь она счастлива. Также я спасла очередную кошечку. Теперь она живет со мной. Очень радовалась тому, что ей не пришлось ампутировать лапу. Она хромает, но лапа осталась целой. У меня новая работа сначала этого года. Я ей очень довольна.

My dad passed away very suddenly from a heart attack. I'm heartbroken but relieved he didn't suffer. I miss his special spirit everyday.

Minor mental breakdown/psychotic episode. I did feel grateful and mystical about it - Grateful for my family being there, for my quick recovery, for understanding and supportive friends. I have felt embarrassed, shook up, and plenty more. I still feel just as lost as before it happened, I still wonder if I haven't addressed the triggers for the experience. I still wonder if it might happen again. I sort of miss the thrill the experience gave me. The intensity of emotions, strong feeling of helping the world, being useful. But if those feelings were fabricated in the first place, I suppose they aren't much use to the world anyway...

Going to Mammoth on a ski trip with my dad and brothers was really significant. It was the first time that we all got to hang out together as adults and truly want to be in each other's presence. There was no significant others or spouses, just us. We all wanted to be there and get along. The fact that we were all adults, we each knew that if anyone was treated badly then we could take care of ourselves and get yourself out of there. We could go stay at a hotel or rent a car and drive home. Knowing that we weren't stuck made us all get along and be on our best behavior. It was really fun to be able to relate on such a level. I felt closer than I ever have them.

I think it was March 11th when I realised my boyfriend has been lying to me compulsively, without remorse, consideration, or care. It was that one god-awful photo of her in that god-awful orange shirt, followed by the same women in a white nightie that looked identical to the one he'd bought me weeks earlier, that made the penny roll down and drop into place. Everything I had been too scared to believe was true - that I could love another human being like I did, they could love me back, that I really and truly had a future with this incredible human being, that I wasn't destined to be alone for the rest of my life - actually wasn't true. I was right to be distrustful. I want to scream at that girl in London and tell her to stop, but I'm screaming through the thick glass of history and she wouldn't hear. I'm tempted to write about this all over again, about the lies upon lies upon lies upon lies. The gas-lighting. The repeat offences. The complete inability to acknowledge the hurt he caused. And my disdain for myself and letting him back into my life. But it's been 6 months, and I need to put it behind me. How did it affect me? It tore me apart, from my insides to my outsides. I have never been disemboweled like this by anyone or anything. I had no idea that human beings had the capacity to be as horrible and cruel. So so cruel. I honestly thought I'd die of natural causes, the grief was so horrific. But I am going to be ok, because I have to be. I have extracted my revenge - I've told people around him about what happened, so that they now look at him in a different light (something that would pain his pride immensely), and I will never feel the way about him that I did. To have the love and adoration I gave that man taken away - what a punishment. He'll get that only once in his life and he destroyed it. Sucks to be you, Steven. And now I must close the vault for one last time, and move on, inch by inch.

This past year my boyfriend relapsed (after nearly 8 months of sobriety), ending our two year relationship. Initially, I was devastated and resentful. Nearly three months later, I am in the process of healing. I am taking steps each day to build my own inner peace and happiness. I am learning to let go of the things outside of my control and find joy in the present moment.

i ended my marriage. it was hard, and challenging, and immensely rewarding. i dreaded it, and was numbed and shut down leading up to the "conversation". afterwards- i found a deep sense of peace. and then joy, and laughter, and love for everything came flooding back into my life. i am so grateful!!

Over the summer, I went to Israel for the first time with my family. We're all Jewish, and have been wanted to visit Israel almost all our lives. We went with a group from our synagogue, and it was probably the most magical experience I've ever had. I remember when we arrived in Jerusalem, as we looked over the old city, thinking to myself, "all the times we've said 'next year in Jerusalem,' and now we're here". It was life-changing. Leading up to the trip, I remember being nervous, and unsure of the experience that I would have, but I'm so glad that we went. I'm not sure when I'll have another opportunity to go, and I'm not sure that it'll be with my family, so I'm unbelievably glad that we went. It was the most magical experience I've ever had.

My grandma passed away this year. It was my most significant death of my life yet I feel I have not mourned accordingly. The timing was terrible and perfect at the same time. It was her time and we all knew it was coming. She had been in hospice for 2 years. I think it will be many years until I fully come to terms with her passing. And reflect fully the importance and impact she had on my life. No one will ever love me as much as she did. No one will ever tell me they love me as many times as she did, and mean it. I hope I didn't disappoint her by not having a Jewish boyfriend during her life (or mine). I still haven't fully processed her story and her pain. What she went through and what she lost. I hope we were enough for her, to partially fill that huge hole in her holocaust heart. I am inspired to life the life she couldn't live. Free from fear. Free from hatred. Free from judgement. Free from emptiness. But full of love, family, gold jewelry, elegant clothing, perfectly combed hair and cheese-less pizza.

My job ended in July. It removed so much stress and anxiety from my life. I am so grateful and relieved every day that I wake up. Grateful because I am alive and I Now understand that gratefulness, acceptance, and love are the reason I'm here. Relieved because I no longer have to deal with the negativity of that department.

Every kid, teenager, adult, dreams of their owning their dream car. For a few years now I was one of those teenagers dreaming of owning my dream car. I knew what color I wanted, and how I would customize it once I had it. Then almost 2 weeks ago it happened. My family and I went to a few dealerships, we left each one with out a vehicle. Then we came to the final dealership of the day. We were all tired and ready to go home. We had a few obstacles come across and we were about to leave the dealership empty handed yet again. But I had a backup team consisting of my mother and my brother to convince my father to purchase this car I had been dreaming of for so many years. My father caved in and we started to file the paper work. I had been dreaming for about this moment for so long I almost didn't believe it was happening.There are no words to describe the feeling, I was getting my dream car. On September 9th, 2017, I finally got my Jeep Wrangler. Im so lucky and grateful to have loving parents.

Quit my job. Got a new one. Everything got better. Yay me!

I think the most significant experience of the last year has to be the election of Donald Trump. It affects me daily. Multiple times a day. I sit here now tearing up with frustration, anger, confusion, feelings of desperation. Everyday I wake up and I try, try really hard to not get to where I am right now, scared. Ultimately I pray and I reflect that society itself has been through some pretty terrible things, this too shall pass.

In the last year, I climbed Mt. Shlomo in the Negev Desert. It was a difficult experience, but a fulfilling and spiritual one as well. As a group (NFTY group), we did it together and talked about taking life in one moment at a time. It was very relaxing and inspring. I was so grateful for the opportunity to do this and learn from it. I was relieved when I got to the top because it took so much effort to get up. I loved it and would do it all over again.

In the past year, I experienced getting a promise ring from my dad who isn't my biological dad. I never really knew my biological dad yet he tries to get in touch with me. This has affected me in a way that now I feel like I'm beginning to understand what it means to have a dad and what that relationship is suppose to be like. I am grateful for this family taking in my family for the past 11 years and being there for us when our blood family wasn't. I'm grateful because although I don't have my mom anymore, I have someone who sort of took her place and we are now starting an interdependent relationship on trust on honesty. I'm relieved that I have someone in my corner holding me responsible and showing me what it truly means to be loved unconditionally. I'm not resentful at all. If anything, I am more concerned with my siblings not being happy for me and saying negative things because they did't receive a ring. I am inspired to do this for my kids when I get older and get married and establish a relationship that is deeply rooted in the love of Christ.

I have started actively participating in Judaism for the first time in my life. I finally discovered a place that sounded like a good fit for me and I actually took the step to get connected. This opened up a whole new world for me. It changed my concept of God and challenged me to look at judgements of others that I have held onto for a long time. It forced me to look at myself and question my identity, both current and desired. It has allowed me at times to become more vulnerable and more present. It has created space for exploration and the possibility of being more comfortable with myself and letting go. I have explored many different services in this time. I have discovered some of what I do and don't like and connect to and have regular ways to do that. I am learning the prayers and songs. I don't feel like a complete ignorant beginner anymore. When I show up there are people who recognize me and are happy to see me. Although I don't belong anywhere yet, I do belong somewhere. I feel welcome and I feel like I'm in the right place for the first time. I feel grateful, relieved, and inspired to continue learning more.

I left the home I spent two years creating in Korea and I moved to Madrid. I am grateful for my time in Korea. I learned so much about myself, about Korean culture, and about relating to other people. Korea taught me the importance of sharing and the importance of respect, though I'm sure I still don't understand those two qualities as deeply as Koreans do. I'm so sad to leave my home in Daegu. I made so many friends there whom I won't be able to see often. And now I'm once again floating in Madrid with no roots, struggling to figure out how to grow here. But there is hope. Now I have a foundation for building a new life in a new city. I'm looking forward to this next year.

A significant experience for me are key moments of being on the verge of breakup with my partner. It feels as though we are just cruising now and I cannot pick up my balls to end it. Soon we will get into an argument and it will occur. I'm bored, and it amazes me how you can love someone so much, then it can just fade away so fast. How do I know what type of person I can be compatible with long term, I thought I used to know and it would be obvious.

A complicated family situation that seemed hopeless turned into a win-win-win. I am so grateful. Maybe it won't stay fixed, but doomsday has been postponed.

I listened to my immigrant friend's story of how FGM was done to her as a child. As she explained it to me, it was as if she was coming to terms with the idea that this type of treatment is considered abnormal, with negative connotations here (in Europe). She told me there was only one girl she knew growing up that had not had it done to her. It changed my life, to have her trust me enough to tell me this. I feel burdened and grateful. I know I can't just keep going on in my life, as if nothing happened.

I realized that being on medications for ADHD, Anxiety and Depression was medically necessary for me, and that it was brave to admit this and pick up the phone and make the appointment. The anxiety and suicidal thoughts were becoming too much and I didn't want my husband, parents and especially my kids to have to pick up the pieces. I realized that I had so much to live for and it was worth fighting the battle every day! Going to that appointment was one of the toughest things I've had to do, and it was hard to work through all the questions and admitting my weaknesses and how chaotic my life had become, and how it was being a disservice to my family and to myself, and I deserved better. It's been three months, and I am already feeling so much better and have so much more hope, and I'm actually excited for the future! Yes, the anxiety and suicidal thoughts are still in the back of my mind, and I know they are things I will always need to fight against them for the rest of my life. But I can look back and see the progress, and now as a result, other health issues are being addressed, and while I know it will take time, I also have hope that I will be sleeping better and feeling better more and more each month!

I learned that my daughter is working in a highly risky and immoral industry. I was...am...crushed, disappointed, angry. She is 27, and even so, I wonder where I went wrong in raising her. Although the pain of this discovery is enormous, I have also looked back at her life and realized that she has put herself into risky situations since puberty. And this is not something that I ignored. I facilitated her entry into therapy, I listened to her, I did my best to help her find healthy outlets for her amazing spirit. I did the best I could. And in many ways, she is a wonderful, passionate woman. I pray that she will reflect on this most recent choice and decide to abandon it. Time will tell.

I had triple bypass open heart surgery! Made me appreciate my loved ones and life itself. I am grateful for the success and recovery of my surgery and recovery and good health. I am relieved and inspired to live life to the fullest and love my wife, family and friends.

A significant experience that happened to me in the past year is that my truck got totaled by a tree at my apartment complex. I wasn't in my truck when it happened, but i was upset to see my truck in that state. That truck was my second vehicle and i ended up in 3 accidents in it and every time the fault was on the other drivers. I was grateful i never been injured in those 3 accidents and really grateful i wasn't in my truck when it happened. I was resentful of the apartment management because they said it wasn't our fault that the tree fell, they said it was the "act of nature". But in all i am glad i didn't get hurt and that my truck kept me safe for a couple of years.

I suffer from depression, but with the exception of a couple of major depressions in my 20s, it's usually short, manageable episodes. Last winter was my first very dark winter living far north. The lack of sunlight triggered a terrible depression. I thought I was worthless and despised. I was on the verge of suicide. Then spring rolled around, the sun came back and I recognized that my thoughts had been delusions. Even though I'd been through crushing depression before, this was the first time I truly realized that this disease puts lies into your head. I'm overwhelmingly relieved and grateful that I survived, and that my kids made it through living with me. I'm armed with new wisdom and am prepared, with medication, for the dark winter that now approaches.

I had my daughter Zion Linnea. Finding out her sex and meeting her was the best surprise I've ever had. Not only is she adorable but she has an energy about her that reminds me of the preciousness of life. I'm so grateful for her especially as a buffer to the sadness and all consuming grief I was in the year prior when my son died. I hope to grow and learn so much from her and myself through raising her.

A lot of things happened to me last year. I was working in a place where i considered not so well since working there was so stressful due to competetive coworkers and not so good ceo. But i was able to enjoy it in my own ways. Havving good times with friends. But as i was having a good with constant circle of friends, i didnt realized i was neglecting the one i was really once closed with. We fought and argued a lot of times and just recently he ended it to the point of developing anger towards me which im basically responsible of. I didn't realized how important he is and the memories we shared before. Weve been a lot. But now its pretty too late. I am still trying though to reach for him and reconnect again, but am not getting any respond from him. So i dont know. I guess he's moving on already. And there is no one to blame but me why we are in this situation.

The election of Donald Trump. Personification of the devil. He poses an existential threat to the United States both internally and externally. His actions and words have terrified me and activated me politically for the first time in decades. His election plus the Republican majority in Congress, has frightened me and, although I hope I am wrong, feels like it could be like the beginning of Nazism in Germany around 1933-38. That's where he poses to the environment of the planet is also an existential one.

Death of a spouse is pretty significant. Freeing him from the grips of frontal lobe dementia lessens the pain. Grief is not nearly as overwhelming as I assumed it would be. Death changes everything, but after such a long time being a caregiver, death just seems like a release. I think I'm relieved that he isn't going through this anymore, but I miss him every day.

I lost my wallet. And some one brought it back to my house. It wasn't the act of losing it or getting it back it was me being able to accesses the situation keep my calm and embrace being ok with what I couldn't control and understanding that I'm human and I make mistakes . It depends on how I react to them that defines me. Money comes and goes . My person is something that's is a representation of me, myself and I and in the long run of my mother father friends family. Thank you god thank you life thank you higher powers for this feeling . And jose if your reading this next year. Your awesome. You did that 🙌🏽

Something significant that happened to me this past year is that I started college. I am somewhat grateful because I love the school and the people. I am uncertain about what I want to do about golf. There are a lot of cons and I don't know what i want top do about this out of fear of Michele. This is just unreasonable and I know that. I feel inspired I just am not acting on this passion that I have. I am extremely grateful to even be in a good school in the first place. I am excited to see where this path will lead me in regard to my future.

I quit drinking alcohol. It hasn't really changed my life in a massively significant way. Little ways - I've lost weight and probably saved money. I'm a bit sharper mentally. But there hasn't been a grand sweeping significant change in my life. I guess it was just one of many excuses getting in the way of what I want to do with my existence rather than the main thing. Quitting booze just made me a little bit happier, but not completely happy. I suppose complete happiness is a big ask.

I faced a bit of a crisis with an ongoing health condition. I essentially hit rock bottom and had to climb my way back. It made me more aware of my body, how I treat it, what goes in it and how I feel. In the end I was inspired to do more, do better, improve on me.

Starting a new job at Convoy has been one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life. When Kristen Forecki first asked me what it would take to lure me away from Napster, I told her it really came down to two things: 1) something I felt had a big impact and believed in, and 2) being surrounded by smart people I can learn and grow from and feel completely intimidated by (as the saying goes, you're only the sum of the average 5 people you hang out with"? I feel like I've gotten both of those things, and feel incredibly grateful - albeit terrified - of this opportunity. I'm scared of screwing up. Of disappointing people. Of not meeting expectations. And sometimes of trusting myself and my instincts. I'd like to work on spending less energy doubting myself and abilities, and pour more into focusing on making an impact and playing to my strengths.

I bought a new house. It left me exhausted but grateful, and fearing being along in a big house.

My sister got married, I traveled solo to Germany and Amsterdam, rediscovering my love for traveling, anonymity, adventure, and history. I dove deep into politics and an activist-oriented mindset. I got a cat, I fell in love. I found vulnerability again, and acceptance and admiration and softness and warmth. I am finding my voice, again, but bigger.

I was able to take the whole year off from traditional work and just be.

A huge experience that I experienced was coming out as a gay man. I was married to a woman in the past, divorced years ago. I never felt totally right. At the age of 50 had my first date with a man. We hit it off, and it has been the best relationship in my life. And we got married. This has impacted me in a positive way. I was able to be free enough to tell my siblings and close friends. This was a powerful life event. I'm only sorry I never explored this side of myself sooner and that I denied my true feelings all these years. I am grateful to my husband. For the life we are creating. Tonight was his first Jewish service besides a few Shabbat dinner and Passover Seder at a friend's home. He enjoyed it.

Over the course of the past year I have had several significant expereinces that range from traveling to Italy to graduating college. Graduation day was quite possibly the most bittersweet day of my life so far. I experienced a wide range of emotions from pride in myself for being the first member of my family on my fathers side to receive a college degree, to fear of what lies ahead, and sadness because I was moving on from the place that had become such a huge part of my life over the past four years. While i am dissapointed to not be there now I cannot be anything but grateful for the experiences that UMass has provided me and all of the amazing people I have met along the way.

The first thing came to mind was the election of the 45 president and how the next day students in our college were so frightened..it was eerily quiet. No smiles, lots of tears. I've never seen or experienced anything like it. For a time I was angry at the people that voted for him but it has motivated me to get involved by marching, volunteering and doing all i can to stop the political madness that has hit this country.

My father passed away after 93 years of life. He held the family together. When it was evident the end was near I couldn't believe it had come so quickly. I was grateful He was my father, he saved my life from what could have been an unpleasant childhood! He adopted me 💕 And loved me until his very last breathe.

That is two fold - I both graduated from college and started my first post-grad job. An ending closely followed by a beginning. I have so many feelings about this. I'm grateful to be done and to be moving onto a job that I hope to be fulfilling and exciting; I'm deeply sad because I'm ending multiple chapters of my life at once and don't totally feel ready; I'm inspired by those around me who are so excited to do impactful work alongside me. I am relieved to be finished with undergrad but incredibly scared to grow up. Physically, so much declines after you turn 30. The unknown of the future is really scary sometimes and stressful, but also so exciting and calming. I met a man who is truly incredible, but we're in different places geographically and emotionally. I keep thinking, "oh no, if it doesn't happen now it never well!" But then I remind myself that I'm so young and there's so much time. Things happen for a reason, whether we force them to or not.

I have recently moved to France. Not only is it my first time moving out of my parents' home, it's my first time moving to a different country! It's my first time in France, in general!! I was very nervous before coming, and on my first few days here, and missing my family and friends, worried about the language (which I don't speak that well yet). But I've been here over a week now and so far... everything's going well! I am grateful for this opportunity, because I definitely wouldn't have done this by myself if it wasn't for the university and the assistants programme. I'm looking forward to new experiences that this will bring!

My husband and I moved into our newly built inlaw apartment. Our daughter, son-in-law, and grandson moved into the main house. It brings me joy and relief. It was a great effort to make it happen.

The election and its fallout has defined the last year. No question. It makes me feel sad, angry, hopeless. It did inspire me to start a tiny contribution to the resistance, and I've started doing things here and there with the local Democrats. But it all seems like so little, against such a huge machine of eager and excited hate.

Being responsible for the youth leadership retreat has made me feel responsible and worthwhile, like I'm doing something good that benefits the world. It's made me feel useful, impactful, respected, needed and also optimistic about the future leaders. It's also made me pretty down that the space we're creating for their future is now in my own past.

Trump elected. Destroyed my faith in the majority of Americans being good people. Destroyed my faith in polls. I am appalled. I am SO resentful of everyone, especially Bernie Bernies, Libertarians, Hillary Haters who didn't do anything to help defeat this monster. Complicit. I realize this ain't spiritual, but it's honest answers to the question.

Midlife crisis which included near relapse into alcohol. I am grateful that it happened because it initiated great changes in my life. It has been difficult.

I visited Portland, Oregon and fell in love with the city. Someday, I hope I can move there and buy a three bedroom, two bath house. I felt inspired by the beauty of the city.

I finished 2 years of CPE residency with specialties is palliative and pediatric care. This experience of reflection and reviewing my practice allowed my to address my fears, my pain, and allowed me to grow as a person of faith.

I've started to recognize crazy quicker and dodge situations that seem like they could become intolerable. Admitting it is hard though, I twist it and think "this is me giving up, not stepping up" and it's not - it's be standing up for what I am willing to put up with. And it's ok to set boundaries, as unfamiliar as that is. I can do it!

New boss, grateful.

I packed up all of my stuff and moved to Portland, Oregon by myself. I mean, I was moving there for school anyway so that didn’t really matter but I was scared. I had never done something like this before and I don’t know why I decided to do it in the first place. I guess that I was just bored with life and wanted to see what else was out there. I am definitely grateful because I had the balls to do it but I’m also a little depressed, even a year later. I miss my friends and I feel like they are forgetting about me and that makes me so sad.

I had cataract surgery on my left eye in December 2016. I have always been afraid of anything affecting my eyesight and limiting my ability to see, to read, to experience sights and to play. The left eye was affected so much that it needed to be done. Now I am procrastinating on having the surgery on my right eye. My eyesight is not better as I also have astigmatism that affects the focus. I sometimes see double and periodically need to squint to focus while driving. Once done there is no going back to what it was and maybe no repairing (as my mother found out the hard way).

The most significant experiences: New York City. Wandering the city alone, feeling not alone at all, but liberated. Learning to be honest, and that I am capable of love, because of the best of friends (or maybe just who I am now). Being in New York has stripped me down to a new level of honesty, both with myself and with others (it's a journey, more than something I've just accomplished, and requires a struggle every day). I'm incredibly grateful for who this program and the summer have helped me to become, and I'm happy to be on this trajectory -- but it's caused a ton of anxiety about what is next. It sparked something wonderful in me, though, and I'm ok with exploring what that means --- sans answers. Donald Trump was elected, too, and I can't even begin to write about that right now. I'm learning a lot about strength.

The election. I still can't quite comprehend the reality of a Trump presidency and the implications this could have on the future of our country/world. The last 8 years seemed like a movement in the right direction in terms of empathy towards other people-especially in terms of race, sexuality and other diverse/minority communities. Instead, I think the election was a reminder of just how far we still have to go. Just how divided this nation is. To be honest, I'm scared. Instability, bigotry and ruthless self-interest are pushing a dangerous agenda for our country. I'm nervous to come back to this question next year.

I lost my grandmother this year. I was so grateful to have been prepared for it. While it was quite painful, it was not the indescribably more intense pain of losing a young person suddenly. I miss her terribly but her loss is so much softer than losing my ex boyfriend. Attending the funeral was such a cathartic experience though. I've been unable to attend the funerals of my other grandparents or even my ex. I got the closure I needed with the support of so many family members.

Anastasia died by suicide, and it shattered my brother's heart, and thus, mine. I still cry whenever I think about it, and I feel helpless when it comes to supporting him. So I do trivial things like buy him socks and bring him spaghetti, and hope these little acts ease his days a tiny bit. I thought time would heal my pain, which is nowhere close to his, but it's been 5 months and I realize I may need someone to talk to. I have an appointment set up with a grief counselor in a couple of weeks.

My friends group of girls, minus one, completely alienated me over a misunderstanding and miscommunication. There was a group trip I was disinvited from which started the whole thing. I felt a great deal of sadness, disbelief, distrust, and pain. I was never so blind sided in my life. After some time, a few of us discussed what happened and amends were made. Since then, I've seen the group twice. I haven't spoken to them much since those times, but I always tried to make an effort to show that i am still invested in the friendship - trying to make plans. It wasn't/isn't reciprocated, but they all still get together frequently (thank you snapchat). I tell myself that i shouldn't let it bother me, that I'm in a different place in my life than they are, but i cannot help but feel betrayed by them. I do feel resentment because i still don't have an explanation as to why they continue to block me out from gatherings even after they've apologized for what transpited and agreed that we all need to try harder. I'm at the point where i give up on finding out the answer, but i think about it almost every day. Losing one good friend is hard enough, i lost 5.

I won my first murder trial as the first chair attorney, saving a young man's life. I am now officially a murder attorney and have the respect of my colleagues. I am very grateful to be doing the work I dreamed of doing. I am relieved that we got the right verdict. I carry the inspiration from that win so that I remember the successes when the job seems hard.

I left my lover of 20 years and moved across the country. We just never "clicked" as partners. We are still best friends and speak at length with each other on the phone every few days. But I miss her. And I miss many things about the life I left. While I now live near my son and daughter-in-law, I only have one friend nearby. And now that I'm living alone for the first time in my long life, I'm tend to be lonely and, as a result, very depressed. On the other hand, I have taken on the greatest opportunity of my live--the chance to find myself, which is something I missed in my past life of "getting and spending," and trying to meet what I considered to be the expectations of others. I'm lucky to finally get to this phase of my life. Better late than never.

Attending the Women's March last January in Washington, DC has inspired me in low moments ever since, for the most part. Just seeing the wide variety of people in attendance buoyed me, and the memory of sheer number of people there helps me remember that I'm not alone in the fight against racism, anti-Semitism, narrow-mindedness, selfishness, cruelty and greed.

My son being diagnosed with Autism. It has changed our family life and the relationship with my spouse. I think for the better but totally stressful. I am grateful that things aren't worse. He is healthy and sweet and funny and hard.

I decided to resign from my job after nearly 8 years and a few states later. It helped to clear my mind, it was something I had been thinking about for a long time and it just became time. I was taking my stress out on my daughter and was not being present for her, bringing home work and taking it out on her. I also had a boss who I did not connect with, nor trust or look up to or respect, which is something I was not used to with my beloved company I worked for. Time had run its course and I ran out of patience and know my worth and also did not want to resent my situation, time to move on and make a change! I am both grateful and relieved for different reasons. Grateful for the experience and opportunities I was given and the money I made and was able to save so I was able to quit. Relieved because my daughter needed ME and the change is night and day! I am not sure about inspired, I need a jolt I am stuck deciding what move to make next.

Pregnant and got laid off

I resigned from my job of 4 years yesterday and have 3 months to find myself. I'm scared and relieved at the same time.

My girlfriend was diagnosed with cancer, she had surgery and recovered. Slowly. I'm grateful for our medical system and inspired by her determination to get back to "normal". I'm also relieved we found it in time.

The birth of my baby boy and getting to know him these past 5 months. Realizing I have capacity to do so much more than I had ever realized. So grateful. So lucky. So many blessings.

My son was diagnosed with albinism in March. Our whole family has been profoundly affected. First I felt grief -- for a long time, grief. It was hard to get comfortable with that sadness, because I am so aware that many parents deal with far more dire diagnoses, and I trust that he will have a good, long, and happy life, full of possibilities. Nonetheless, an unknown, possibly severe vision impairment and other, related challenges are not what one hopes for one's child. For weeks, maybe months, when I looked at him, instead of feeling joy and hope, I felt grief. Six months later, I am more able to see the special abilities and delights of his condition, at least now and then. His sensory compensation is magical. He is shockingly beautiful, with his white hair and porcelain skin. And I am changed: I am newly, very deeply aware of the ways our culture and our world are built on ableism, and what a struggle it is to be included and respected as a person with a disability. I am reminded daily that difference is a challenge, especially such visible difference. I am afraid for his safety as he grows and becomes more mobile. But I am grateful for what I've learned about boundaries, how I've learned to talk to strangers more clearly and in ways that protect my family better. I'm grateful for having my eyes opened to our culture's intense prejudices against the disabled. And of course I am grateful for the spectacular gift of being his mother. What a joy.

I found out my father's health has gotten worse and the specter of his passing has become more real and more immenent. This has made me anxious and reflective. Anxious because of the unknown status of his future; will he be with us for a couple of more weeks or several months or more? Reflective because I think of his life, what it means, and where am I with my life, what I've done, who have I touched. What difference have I made? How will I be remembered? Have I connected with enough people or deeply enough? May this next year be meaningful, may I make my time worthwhile, my contribution valuable. My connections more impactful.

I recently found out I had a brain tumor and had unexpected surgery that dramatically changed my plans for the end of summer and the start of fall. Luckily it was benign. It has made me slow down and evaluate what I want to do, especially as I don't have as much energy as I am used to. This annoys me, but also makes me more intentional. I am working to figure out how to keep this perspective as I regain more energy.

Here's the sad part; nothing immediately came to mind. And then something did. My cat Nomad was diagnosed with congestive heart failure about six weeks ago. I try to forget it. I don't want to remember that he is dying. He's only eight and he's only lived with me for five years. He showed up at my door one cold winter day, scrawny and matted. A black spot at the sliding glass door who ran away when I came to the door. For some reason, he kept coming back and made friends with my other cat Lyric. But he wouldn't make friends with me. He wouldn't, couldn't trust me. It took me 12 long weeks of putting out wet food morning and night for Nomad to trust me enough to let me touch him. A quick pet or a short scratch on the top of the head as he walked by me and then he would run away to the back of the yard out of reach hiding under a bush. Another four weeks before he decided to come in the house to stay. And now, I'm losing him. The cat who snuggles with me by grabbing my hand and pulling it to his chest has a rumbling in his chest because his breathing is labored. It is all I can do not to cry when I hear that rumbling. How does it affect me? I'm grateful I have the ability to care for him and make the end of his life as easy as possible but I'm so resentful that this cat who found a home and found love now has to die far too young. Maybe he'll be here next year when I get my answers and maybe he won't. But I will love him every day that I am lucky enough to have him with me.

In early December 2017, my 7 year old son and I got a dog. Not a dog, a puppy. He had been asking for a dog since he was 3 years old, and, to teach him the lesson that if he asks for something long enough, he'll get it (haha); I finally relented. Having a dog has affected me more than I realized. I love her more than I thought I would. She makes me madder than I thought she would. The two of them fight more than I thought they would. I did the math of getting a dog when he was still on the younger side of being able to help and care for the pooch in relation to knowing this dog will eventually die; and I didn't imagine I'll want to have a dog when I'm empty nesting. And now she's in our lives. And now I have to think about her death. Sometimes I do resent her presence, the extra burden of work she presents. And sometimes I just accept her as a member of the family. I'm more intensely confronted with my views as animals as less important beings than humans. I hate when my son mistreats her, because I see her as so vulnerable. I didn't imagine getting a dog would be so life-changing. But it is. She has changed our lives.

My grandson was born, and became my responsibility. I am grateful, because I love him. However, I am resentful that he is my responsibility. I will do anything to keep him safe, but am enraged that it has become my job.

I didn't get to do driving lessons. I passed the assessment, but they won't see me until I get state funding (they won't even let me know about any alternate funding options/ self pay). The disability services happened to be reorganized into unemployment services and had funding changed at the same time. My case workers there have been nothing but helpful and understanding. I am going into an appointment with my temp case worker tomorrow. I do not have a copy of the st david's order and am worried they won't send a copy to the case workers/ talk to me since it's been a year. The OT pretty much said to me all outher autistic people she sees have carers. They are not used to talking directly to a disabled person like me and have been very unhelpful. I am trying to not hate myself. I know I am doing everything in my power. However being in America, even in a city with public transportation, is very limiting when you don't know how to drive. I can't meet up with friends whenever. I can't look for jobs/ a life in other cities because I have no way to get around. This is something that idiot teenagers can do without help, so obviously I'm the one with a problem. I have been trying to make this work for two years. I have inadvertently put my life on hold to learn to drive. I know that this is not my fault. I have always done the best I can. When I was a little girl, no one took into consideration that the way males and females are socialized could effect how autism presents itself so I was not diagnosed until the summer I left for college. No one knew the way my brain was built was why I had a hard time learning to drive, so no one knew I needed special help. I fought hard to get the right diagnosis. At one point my mom, my biggest supporter, told me I was being a hypochondriac for bringing her article after article on this or that possible mental illness/ developmental issue. I've had to fight hard for every inch of support I've needed. I've often gone without support and have had to push forward, centimeter by centimeter, on my own. I know the fault isn't with me and that I'm doing everything I can. Without much forward momentum (and with living at home at thirty with two degrees) it is very hard to believe anything but this: I am the one who is wrong, I am beyond help. I waver between being very angry at the way things are stacked against people with disabilities and at being very angry with myself. At hating myself for the way I was born. I wish I could love myself more.

The loss of my sister affected me greatly. I'm still figuring it out what it all means to me...only 58 years old it's still hard to comprehend.

I didn't want to give an answer like this, I wanted to give a real answer to the question asked. But I don't feel like I've had significant experiences. Nothing rises above the momentary or has any lasting impact. I've changed, but in a gradual continuous way as hundreds of things happened, I don't know when it starts or stops. Things are different, but I didn't have an experience of them being different.

I went to Europe and Israel with my camp. It really changed my view of the Middle East and the rest of the world as well. Also by traveling with my friends I became much closer to them and had an amazing experience.

I moved to NYC! I feel blessed and inspired. I still haven’t figured everything out but I feel like I am in the right place to do it.

Quoth Michael, "Hold down the shift key, and the A key, and hold them both for awhile, and then you're done." This is not entirely fair. We got engaged this year, which was magical (for at least a week, before the AAAAAAA set back in.) I think the Trump election was about as horrible as my unexpected divorce from Dan. Yeah, we knew it was a possibility, but never thought it would happen like that. The healthcare bill passing the house while we were roaming around Charleston... I feel like this last year has mostly been one of shock. To end on a higher note: I also had that whole France trip with Joe and Janet and Rhonda and Andrea and the littles. The puppet show! The L'Orangerie! The food! The French concierge guy who helped himself to our wine and cut us breakfast cheese! The catacombs! The Belgian residency! Belgium in general! Antwerp! Janet pretending to be horses! It was an amazing time that already feels so far in the past. Also, I am still grateful for having my own room that entire trip, which is probably what kept Kaitlyn alive.

I had several major milestones in the past year. I turned sixty and hosted a marvelous party - with lots of help from my daughter - for a great group of friends. Very grateful to all who came and to my daughter for all her love and hard work. I attempted yet again to lose weight - went to two different major weight loss 'camps' - Destination Jumpstart in Moclips and Whistler Fitness Vacations. Gained 3 pounds - very disappoited, disspirited and resigned. I set myself a goal to walk in six 5 k walks before I turned 60 and I did it - but it was NOT a good idea. While successful, each one set me back several days in my fitness training schedule but at least I learned my limits and walking that long a distance without taking rests is not a good plan for me. I bought my own home for the first time AND I bought myself a Tesla Model S. Very happy, excited and proud of myself. Also volunteered in Greece running a medical clinic for Syrian refugees for 2 months. Fantastic experience and again proud of pushing myself outside my comfort zone on this one!!

I was appointed to the Washoe County Planning Commission. Despite my reservations about my capacity to serve given my diminishing cognitive skills, the process of applying, interviewing, and participating has shown me I still have something of value to contribute. I certainly am less functional than I used to be, but I am more open-minded and a better listener because of that. I have learned a great deal about myself and I hope to use my position to better organize my community. I have also learned a great deal about community planning,which is a bit embarrassing after 40 years as a professional planner.

I was able to provide significant financial assistance to my parents when they needed it most. This experience made me reflect on the thousands of moments my parents supported me financially even when they were struggling to make ends meet. I am grateful for the sacrifices they made for me - sacrifices that allowed me to attend a top university and graduate with a job that provides me with financial independence and stability. While I have nothing to give my parents that could possibly come close to life they've given me, I am privileged to have had the opportunity to express my gratitude with more than just words.

I claimed the vegan title. I am amazed at myself, I really didn't think I could do it! But here I am, fully vegan, and not even thinking twice about going back to being non-vegan. I've met wonderful people as a result, I've tried new foods, my cholesterol dropped 30 points, and I'm making a positive difference in the lives of so many animals. Of course, it's not all sunshine and rainbows. It's very hard to hear and see the cruelty all around me, in people I love, who aren't ready to change yet. But all in all, it's been amazing and I'm so proud of myself for doing it.

I signed up to become a Profit First Professional, and paid $4000 up front for it. I got really really excited, then anxiety ground it into the ground. I've wanted to give up on it a bunch. I'm now at the place of trying to keep studying it and following their suggestions, while also staying closely connected with my internal guidance.

I was diagnosed with leukemia. I was certainly in shock, and depressed. I didn't go through the "why me?" phase, but I did have a lot of different emotions: fear, anger, shock, depression, loneliness. Then, just as I thought that I was finally feeling empowered, I lost my dog, my family to a brain tumor. I honestly didn't think I could have felt lower than I did when I got my diagnosis, but now, it seems like my whole world has crumbled around me.

It's been an òdd year since Brenda died. The first 6 months were amazingly positive but the last 3 have a real struggle. Depression has hit hard. But the most significant event this year was very positive. I had a weekend away with my sister in June to see Alfie Boe and Michael Ball in concert in Lincoln Castle. We had the best weekend. We got on really well. The weather was great. We shopped, walked, went to the Cathedral and had a boat trip. The concert was amazing, and amazing atmosphere. Best seats in the house. I am so grateful, I felt connected to her. ... and I genuinely didn't care that she didn't like my tattoos!!

Attended the wedding of someone who was once one of my closest friends. It was a good time, and it was great to see him happy. But there's lots of cause for reflection, too. Some old friends I see regularly, some I don't. Some have stayed the same - and some of us continue to draw new friend groups that fit in with the old. But this friend is different - his current community - and the person he is within that community - is entirely different from the person who became my friend in high school. It's not a case of good or bad, grateful or resentful - it's just something that is.

My mother flew with me to Switzerland to attend her great-grandson's bar mitzvah and celebrate her 99th birthday! It was not an easy trip, as I had the responsibility of getting her there and helping her with every aspect of our visit. However, although it was difficult for her and she had to depend on me a lot, she amazed everyone there with her ability to "keep up" with all the activities. We also spent some very quality time, just taking a walk and talking, which we never do in our daily lives. I was so happy to see her enjoy the outdoors and relax. Back home she never seems very happy but on this trip, she seemed to really enjoy the experience. It will probably be her last trip, but I'm so glad she made it. I must say I'm relieved that she got through it and I'm also inspired by her strength to push herself to do something that meant so much to her.

There has been a lot of defining and redefining who I am in the past year. After deciding to move to Perth, live together with Rahul, and leaving the stability of my full-time job, I really had to grapple with the questions of "who I am", "what values do I bring" and "what kind of work do I want to give to the world?". Sometimes I am resentful that I have to be the one struggling with all of the questions at the same time, for having my life uprooted and my social system disbanded, but I quickly came to myself every time and I realized: - That I am grateful to be given the space to discover these questions and given the opportunity to take my time to answer them - That I am grateful to have Rahul as my partner, who has taken the commitment to support and stand beside me, even though I know it gets difficult for him too - That I am grateful to have this blank space to rewrite, recreate and redraw again my future by taking into account not just what's important to me, but what's important to both of us as a family. Specifically, I am grateful that we continue to fill up the year with memories: - Traveling to Sydney, Melbourne, Esperance, Scone and Malaysia again; around food, friends, and family. Rahul is my best partner in crime in all of these and I'm counting my lucky stars to have him in my life in all these moments. - My brother getting married and getting to know my new nephew. I'm grateful for getting to spend quality time with my parents, family and my nieces and nephews. I am grateful for being able to continue to have the flexibility and resources to spend the time with them despite my uncertainties around work and income. - Working hard and working through life goals that cement our commitment to each other. Like registering our relationship, finally submitting our visa application, and weathering through storms of our relationship even when things get difficult. In short, although it has been a tumultuous year, it was also a year of getting to know Rahul more as a partner and as we live together, a year of continuous discovery of the joy and surprises of finding out who we are as a person and who we are together, and I'm most grateful for Rahul for always making me smile, making me laugh and making me believe that we can make our dreams come true no matter how difficult.

I became homeless & lost 95% of my belongings due to a Brown Recluse Spider Bite on the side of my left foot. I wasn't found for 6 days & almost died & there were plenty of time's that I wished I were dead after losing my home of 20+ year & my job of 20+ years. I never lost my Faith in Yahweh though. I finally after over a year have an apartment that is being paid for by a homeless program and the PGE too while I wait on my Disability Hearing since September 2017, just glad I have a Lawyer for that.

The election of Donald Trump has caused much angst. It will take many generations to undo the damage Trump has caused- and it's only 8 months into term. History will make the Trump years as ones of hate, discord, shame, and lies. How did this experience affect me? Well my life really hasn't changed. However, the election of Donald Trump has instilled fear in millions of other people. Sad days ahead.

The election. I felt I was stuck in a nightmare that I couldn't wake up from and it still feels that way. It also made me go into distress labor, lasting for the next 5 days. I am so thankful that my baby was born healthy and totally oblivious to the shock and disbelief of the rest of the world and that I recovered rather quickly and easily from an emergency C. And so grateful that her beautiful presence in my life helped me from sinking into an ongoing depression about the state of the world.

I’ve had a multiple encounter in Family identity and growth and all that I’ve seen in this past year. The development of my mental and physical state has allowed myself the deep-in my roots with my marriage with my partner that has made a significant positive change in my life that is help support my growth as a man that I am

I started therapy and it has been both incredibly difficult and incredibly helpful. I am learning that it's okay to have and show emotions, even negative ones. I am learning to take better care of me and ask for what I need. I'm grateful I can do this work.

In February, I fell and broke my ankle. Because I live alone, I had to walk on my foot immediately. Somehow I was able to care for myself and my ankle continued to heal. I contacted friends and acquaintances, and found people to drive me everywhere I needed to go. As an independent person, I just asked and people came. It was interesting that I was able to let others take care of me. Because I kept "moving" my healing only took 6 weeks and I was back on my way. Another few months and the pain went away. Now my ankle is stronger because I kept moving and did not allow the break to overtake my life.

My husband was diagnosed with cancer. It has changed our lives and the focus of my time and investment of my energy. I am grateful in many different ways: for G-d's mercy, power, kindness, and provision just to start. I am relieved in having answers, direction, and hope. Inspired to strive for growth in advancing my faith. Resentful at times for the fight, the stress of an unknown future and the fears of loss and for life.

So really, the biggest thing that weighs me down is my daughter (the last kid) graduating from high school. I have been gearing up for an empty house, but she didn't get it together (for sometimes legit reasons) to enroll in college. That was kind of devastating for me. I like having her around, but I wanted to be done with the daily parenting stuff. It's not like, just because she is 18, I can turn it off. I support her, and am helping her with this current college search, but it's hard without the high school support. I try to look at it from her point of view, and that helps, but the stress is a lot for me. It's been hard to climb out of it all. I resent it I guess. It makes me think that I can't change.

Very recently my boyfriend and I uprooted our lives in New York and moved to Chicago. It's still too new to really make an assessments but on the surface I think this was great decision. Our apartment is probably 3 times the size of NY apartment and we're paying less. This move will also force me to make an effort to make friends which I think will be hard but will also be good for me. It's also cemented, to me, that I am the doer in the relationship. I've literally handled every aspect of our move, even parts that I didn't want to. I'm definitely more of the "adult" out of the two of us which I've always felt but this has really solidified that feeling for me. This has been a little frustrating and exhausting and I'm not entirely sure how to course correct this situation so that we share more in decision making and handling of important issues, but I continue to wear the mantle and grin and bear it. That has really been the only Me heat I've thing so far. So I hope we have an amazing experience in our new city.

A very significant experience in the past year was my conversation with Dad in Canada. In the context of our relationship, after so many years of difficulty, it was more wonderful than I can say to feel that so much pain and hurt had been addressed and that we could then move forward. I am grateful that Dad listened to me, heard me, recognized what I needed, and gave me what I needed so that we could move forward into what I hope is a healthier, happier relationship. Thinking about it now, I am somewhat resentful/upset that it took this long for the conversation to take place; however, at the time when it took place I felt nothing but gratitude and joy, so that's what I'm going to try to hang on to.

My daughter had surgery. Both my daughters are starting their senior years, high school and college. Excited to see what the future holds

This year I lost my beloved father. It reminded me that although he was 85, there is never enough time. It is important to do and be the person you want to be now. It reminded me of the importance of family ( siblings, kids, hubby) who were there to support and continue to be there. There were beautiful moments in his passing as he was surrounded by his grandkids and kids and escorted from this world in a manner that befit his life- with humor, a sweetness , a sadness and sureounded by those who loved him. I will forever hold a place in my heart for my dear dad

My Mom died. It makes me sad. It makes me treasure the time I had with her and for everything she did for me. It makes me treasure even more the things that I have with people in my life who are very significant.

I had a baby ! My whole life has been changed and my priorities reordered. I am beyond thankful for the amazing blessing of my son!

I married my long term partner after 10 happy years of dating. I didn't expect it to matter as much as it did. Of course I knew it would be a significant event in our lives together, but I assumed that being married wouldn't be that different than seriously dating for years, but it really is different. Her family is my family now and mine is hers. She and I already felt like family, but now we ARE family, and that's just different. It's like a way too on the nose metaphor turned into an actuality. The sign didn't really change but the signified did. I wish I did it years ago, but I thank Gd every day for this incredible woman.

This past year was full of traveling for me. I visited Ireland, Haiti, China (twice), the Grand Canyon, and Tampa Bay. Each and every time I travel, I learn something new about myself and the world. I am always so grateful that I have the privilege of being able to travel to so many places in my short 25 years of life. I've seen more places in the world than most of the people I know. Ireland was the first international trip that I plan on my own. It brought Emily and I so much closer and left us with so many memories and laughs. Getting a new job this year involved getting the chance to travel to China twice this last year. It truly is a whole different world over there, but the more I go, the more I like it. I love getting to learn the details of the culture. Tampa Bay and the Grand Canyon were both trips that were just me and Travis. And although these trips were here in the US, they meant more to me than I can put into words. Traveling with your best friend and significant other puts you in situations that you have not been in before and really shows you each other's true colors. Seeing him so happy at a Raiders game, was one of my favorite things. Hiking the Grand Canyon, riding in a hot air ballon, road tripping with out GPS or phone signal, getting high (legally) for the first time in my life on my 25th birthday on 4/20 - they are all memories that I am so so happy and grateful that I made them with him. Although each trip was different I would have to say that the Haiti trip affected me the most. It never fails that I forget what life is like in a developing country. The poverty hits me like a ton of bricks. I come back to the US more confused and challenged about how I live my life, why I am privileged to grow up where I did. But it also challenges me to use that privilege for good. I am now the sponsor of a little girl named Marielle. And I think about her everyday. I left a huge piece of my heart in Haiti and hope to go back again some day. The last year was full of learning experiences and memories and I am so thankful and grateful and inspired by them.

This year, I came out. It's weird, because this New Years was the time that I really decided I was going to do it. I was going to actually go on dates with women, and I was going to tell people I was bisexual, because clearly that's what I was. Clearly I couldn't be totally gay, because, dear god what took me so long, then? And I did it. I joined dating apps, I introduced myself to new coworkers as queer, I went on dates. I called my parents. Told my cousins. Got in a fight at a super Catholic wedding. I started dating Lisa, who is pretty and smart and shy, and who is doing this weird awkward coming out thing as an adult, too. And in all of this, I kinda hoped that people wouldn't ask me what took me so long, because I didn't know the answer. Almost as soon as I started dating Lisa, I knew I was not just attracted women, but attracted to only women. And I think I knew that, too, on some level. But I've gotten really wrapped up in conceptualizing myself as this person who knew a lot of things "on some level." And I've reworked my memories to fit this narrative of a person who was closeted, who was keeping a secret. And I was keeping secrets. This wasn't my first foray into lesbian dating, after all. I'd first set myself as bisexual on OkCupid--just to see--in...2012? 2013? Earlier? I'd been on a few dates, even. I used to write little coming out notes every year on National Coming Out Day. Except all those notes were confused. They were me coming out as questioning, and I wasn't ready to question in front of everyone I knew. In a lot of ways, I didn't feel like I was hiding. I didn't have a secret girlfriend. I wasn't secretly pining over anyone in particular. And when I made out with girls in college, that was definitely out in the open. It wasn't a secret at all. I'd known all the way back in high school that I didn't feel about boys the way a lot of my friends felt about boys, and I wasn't quiet about that. I talked about it. About how I didn't know the difference between attraction and friendship, platonic and romantic love. I knew I connected better with women, but I didn't have the context of reciprocation to explore any of those feelings, so I never understood them in a deeper way. I think if we're really going to divide my life into a before and after I knew I was attracted to women, it was St. Patty's Day 2014, when Liz wrote me a limerick and we kissed through a car window. It was all play on her part, but I floated all the way home. And I knew that it wasn't going anywhere, but I also knew that I *wanted* to go somewhere. And that was enough. But my life was such a disaster at that point. I was crying almost all day every day. That St. Patty's Day at the Squirrel Cage was probably the only day I left the house that week. After that I moved to a teeny tiny beach town, home of exactly zero young, single queer women. So I let that self-knowledge sit in the back of my mind. I stored it away for later. This year, though. This year I had the money and time to date. I had a job I wasn't ashamed of sharing out loud. I had short hair and a couple of flannels and why the hell not, at this point? And if the experience has been a little rough in places, that's okay. If calling the parents and telling them was really, unexpectedly hard, that's okay. If I still think about whether or not it was the right call to take communion at Kelly's wedding, that's okay too. I want to say I hope you're doing well, future me. I want to give examples of what I think I hope you've accomplished. Except I'm old enough now to know that you'll be one year older than me, and whatever I say is going to sound weird and wrong and potentially heartbreaking. So I just hope you're plugging along, being me and you and us, the parts that overlap and the parts that don't. And I hope you remember to be grateful for 2017, even though a lot of it was terrible and we have a monster for a president and there are hurricanes and earthquakes and nuclear weapons coming out of North Korea. Because 2017 hasn't been so very bad. Not for us, at least.

This year my 91 year old mother decided to move from the home she built with my father and move into a retirement facility. This process has been traumatic and has caused some health issues.We know that this is the best choice and that the housing market to sell my childhood home is an all time high. The problem is that she is over working and making herself sick. We are still in the midst of this but I see that it is the best solution. Still very hard for all of us.

I finally took an international trip and I did it by myself. It taught me a lot about myself and what I like to do. The trip itself was perfect for me -- just enough activity, just enough friends. I learned that I'm not a go-getter traveler and that I like my vacations to be a break. I'm relieved I finally took the leap and took a real vacation. I'm inspired to see more of the world. I'm a little bitter at the people with significant others who have people to see the world with.

the experience i had was that i decided to move to los angeles from seattle (still in progress). it has been an exciting if stressful time. exciting in that i will get to live by my family for the first time in 20+ years; stressful as far as job situation, moving logistics, and actually...living by my family for the first time in 20+ years. :D so far i'm grateful i have the opportunity to do this while maintaining my current work situation. i miss seattle, but i am meeting lots of great new people, and i am super optimistic about my future here in LA. p.s. somehow this question reminds me of the scene in kill bill where elle driver kills budd -- which is the biggest R you feel about never having dueled with the bride...relief...or regret?

A few weeks shy of my 26th birthday, I finally graduated from college. I didn't go to commencement, because my dad had just had surgery and my family couldn't make it. Instead I went out and got hammered with some MBA students who would later become dear friends. I downplayed my graduation at the time because I was a little embarrassed at how long it had taken me. But I'm really proud of what I accomplished, given that I've had chronic health problems since high school. Growing up, college and career success seemed inevitable. It's wound up being far more difficult than I anticipated and I have learned to celebrate the wins, no matter how small or delayed they seem, because it means that I'm moving forward.

I came to a deep and lasting forgiveness for my ex husband. Released resentment, fear, oppression. Choose to bless him, see him as on his divine path. Felt affection for him as for an old friend.

This past year I was involved in a traumatic car accident and it changed everything. I am fueled with gratefulness for every moment. I have renewed my faith and found new life. It was a rough experience and a lot of people have told me to not repeat myself to, not try to be a hero. But I have always wanted to stand up for what was right and I don't really know how not to be that way. I don't know if i would repeat the exact same situation the same way, but I will try to stand up to injustice when I can.

The moment I knew I had to return to be a camp counselor at Newman. Walking up the hill after Gadna, with Melissa, Lexie, and all my kids, when they started begging to walk AvoPath. I began arguing why it was too dangerous, and Melissa started playing "Wash Me Away." My girls joined in, singing up the hill, in a three part round. We stopped at the top of the hill, Lexie pointed out the sunset, and we stood around and sang and stood with our arms around each other in a circle. Melissa and Lexie and I were thrilled. We created an impromptu Priestly Blessing, covering our girls with our hands, then broke, and I began our bedtime rap. It was absolutely amazing, the kind of Jewish experience I could only wish for my girls. I have to keep imparting that experience on other girls, shaping their Jewish identity each day.

I was excited and proud to cast my vote for Hillary Clinton in the presidential election. The next morning, I was devastated when Trump was declared the winner. I was in a fog of fear, revulsion and despair and have had a very hard time coming to terms with this reality. Every day I see him do further damage to the office, to the country, and to the tradition and commitment to the values we have always stood for. I fear that the stench of this corrupt administration will follow us for years, and that each day the fabric of the nation is further rent. I am still devastated and disbelieving and wish more than anything to see him and his henchman removed from office.

My son was born in February. I could not have even begun to imagine how it has affected me. The whole world has changed, but also, everything's the same. The little things have surprised me the most – I cry at silly animal-parent videos, I smile at other babies and mothers wherever I go. At the same time, I'm also amazed at how lonely it feels to be a mother. Your friends stop calling, you're consumed with looking after a tiny human, and forget what it's like to look after yourself. You feel guilty at almost everything. I'm so grateful that he's happy and healthy, and wouldn't go back, even if I could. He's brought so much love into my life; he makes me want to be better.

I got a new job. It has been such a relief and I do feel grateful. Very hard to take a big salary cut and yet it is the best job I've ever had in other ways.

I started fostering dogs. It wasn't really on purpose; it just kind of happened. It has been a really good experience and also something I've found that I'm good at. It has given me a focus and a way to not fall too deeply into myself and my depression and get lost. It has given me project after project with the best reward--seeing the dogs find their perfect homes. I've learned that I can fully love an animal just as my own but still let it go, knowing that I helped it along the way and I'm just a stepping stone. I'm greatful that I've learned that my capacity for love isn't broken

I decided to separate from my husband. I am sad, disappointed but also relieved. I feel equal parts hopeful and despondent about my future.

The three year romantic relationship that I had with Bryan ended last month, pretty much a year from when he told me he loved me. It was over 10 years between my relationship with Bryan and the previous one. I feel even more broken and unattractive than I did before we started. Is it too much for me to have a person in my life where there is mutual love, mutual respect, mutual attraction, and mutual appreciation?

I closed down my business. I wasn't running it for a long time, just over a year and it had to be closed down. I feel relieved definitely but I also feel regret for the money I lost and disappointed with people. This experience led to loss of several relationships I deemed important.

I got married! I've been married for about 6 months now and even though certain moments are challenging, it's by far the best decision I've ever made. I feel so lucky to be married to a guy that inspires me and who works very hard to achieve his dreams. I thank the heavens for you my love.

Mom diagnosed with cancer. She had it removed and has completed Radiation. The future is bright. Mom and Dad received lots of support from us kids and grandkids. It made our close family closer and, again, reminded us what is important in life - Do what we can to help others. It helps us heal too. Just happens to be family, but we did the same for the hurricane victims, whatever we could do to help.

I moved. In fact, I moved four times. First, from my home with Korrie on Moss Drive into my faculty member' home-well at least most of my belongings moved there. I moved into Korrie's new apartment for what was supposed to be a six week temporary houseshare until I moved into my faculty member's home for seven months of housesitting. I was sad to be leaving my joint apartment with Korrie; that apartment was supposed to be our home while I completed my doctoral training. Until our separation. Leaving that home meant that we were leaving each other-even though I was moving into his new apartment temporarily. I was sad. And yet, I was excited about the idea of moving into my faculty members home. She lives in a nice neighborhood, with good sidewalks, and it's near the river. There would be a park just up the street for Bryson, and a coffee shop two blocks away for me. I imagined my time there would give me space to breathe and consider my next move post-divorce. To figure out where I wanted to live. How I wanted to move in the world as a single person again. But, after four weeks at Korrie's, I was notified that my faculty member was not going to be traveling due to injury/illness, and I needed to find a home. In fairness, she offered me the opportunity to move in with her and her husband temporarily, but that felt uncomfortable. However, the snafu was that I was also leaving for a month-long training opportunity in Washington DC in July; a trip that was to be preceded by a week of dog sitting and a week at my parent's house. So, I had two weeks to find a home. Oh, I was mad at first. Mad and resentful. I kicked myself for not making a more permanent plan. For trusting that the universe was giving me an opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and enjoy seven months free of rent. I was angry. I also felt desperate. My focus turned to looking at apartment complexes online and trying to figure out what I could afford and what I could qualify for. My credit score was crashing and burning as my (still) spouse stopped paying on our joint accounts. His preparation for us going bankrupt. At that point I was still paying on my accounts-except the medical bills that I could not afford- but it didn't matter. My credit score had dropped from over 740 points down to close to 400. I felt to despondent. How was I going to find a place to live in two weeks? Who would take me? And then I got the text from my friend Amanda that her friend's husband was considering renting his home. He hadn't lived in it for over two years, and the house had been empty for over a year. They were making the decision to rent or to sell. She asked if I would be interested, and gave me the address. I drove by immediately and love the look. I said I would like to meet the landlord, Rob. We met that afternoon and he showed me the inside of the house. I fell in love. A small sunny two bedroom, one-storey home with a large garden and a driveway. In a neighborhood in North Knoxville that I had previously looked at, where there were sidewalks and (as reported by Rob as he named them all) friendly neighbors. I told Rob on that visit that I wanted to move in. He reduced the rent by the $50 I asked him to, and offered to help with the lawn care. We agreed in June that I would move in August 15. We didn't sign a lease until July, but despite the lax paperwork I felt okay. Calm. Sure and thankful. I next moved from Korrie's apartment to a basement Airbnb with my aforementioned friend Amanda for a month while we attended a National Cancer Institute summer training program in Washington DC. I was so nervous to go to DC. To leave my dog with my parents. To be living out of yet another suitcase. But, wow, that month was one of the best experiences that happened to me this year. The training was excellent, yes, but the time I spent by myself in that apartment, hiking solo, going for walks, drinking coffee, swimming with Amanda, going to AA meetings and getting sober, was more impactful than I could've imagined. It was good for me to be gone from Knoxville. To know that I could be on my own. I could be sober. And that I could be happy. I could be happy alone. Upon my return from DC I returned to Korrie's apartment for 10 days. I was ready to leave. And yet, when time came to move I was nervous about being alone. At first, I asked him to spend the night. And then, I didn't want him to. I wanted to do it myself. That first week after unpacking, after my mum visited but before I got Bryson back, I lived alone. And I loved it. Since bringing Bryson home with me, I still love it. I feel calm here. All the time. I love our morning walk rituals, and our evening dinner and television. I love working in the screened-in back porch office, and seeing the light stream through the kitchen windows. I love that the space is decorated with my taste and my art. I love that I can walk around naked and not worry about what message I'm sending. Or not. I love my deep bathtub and my organized pantry. All the baking goods in glass jars. I love that it's mostly clean all the time. Very little clutter. And I love that I am sober here. I am active here. I am reflexive here. I am loving here. I am me here. After months of moving and uncertainty, I finally came home. I am home here.

My aunt died. She was deaf and blind and mentally handicapped. We communicated using sign language, which I learned in grade school, then college and then grad school. I became her guardian after my grandmother died; I was 33. From that time forward, my aunt came and spent holidays with me and my family. I was in the room when she died. I was sad and bereft, but also happy it was painless and that she had lived a full and mostly joyful life. I'm so grateful I knew her. She made me a better person. I'm now relieved of the responsibility of guardianship, but I miss her, particularly around the holidays. That said, her memorial and burial services brought together almost all her nieces and nephews and their families, and she would have loved that. She loved having the family all together. It brought her immense satisfaction to have our family gather together and she would have loved that we were.

It was very recent... I exploded at my friend... I had let so much built up because I have issues communicating... it was a scary experience... no one was hurt but it was an eye opener... I'm working very seriously now to work out my issues of esteem, trust, and communication.

I quit my job, and it was the most liberating experience Of my life. It was risky, but it made me realize how much more important my family and health was. I am in the process and starting my own small business. Although I have a long road ahead of me, I am 100% happy.

My husband died on Father's Day after a four-and-a-half year time with cancer. I am very sad. I am grateful that around six of his last 9 weeks were very good. I miss him. I'm overwhelmed by the additional responsibilities with paperwork and cars and things.

we moved from SC to Fla, huge Charleston to little Homosassa. We now have a large house with our own pool, but are much further from family. Katie and Dennis are so much closer and that has been great. I have had multiple problems finding good Drs. and missed a remicade treatment, which caused a health set back. I have had several health problems since the move, bursitis in the hip and groin for about 2 months, causing back and leg problems due to crooked walking. Had a big hurricane just miss us, but had gas shortages, no stores open. BUT, Charleston got it harder. I am feeling better and hope I have turned a corner. Estate sales are fun. Springs are gorgeous!

My son, Ben, got engaged and completed his masters, all in the same week. I am thrilled to see him so happy and so excited at the prospect of becoming a teacher of language arts. I am grateful that he appears to have found his life partner. I am grateful that I was able to pay for his grad school expenses. I also had a hip replacement and am grateful that it went well. Not thrilled that my left leg is now a half-inch shorter than it my right, but after watching friends struggle post surgery, I am very happy that I can walk at normal speed, pain free!

There are a few things I can think of that were fairly significant experiences and I know other questions will give me a chance to write about them, so I think I'm going to choose taking part in the Women's March in January as the one. It was billed as a chance to protest in favor of rights for women, but was more of an anti-Trump event, the day after his inauguration; taking part in it was significant because it made me feel like I was part of something much bigger than myself, as women (not just women, actually) all over the country and even the world took part. I felt inspired by the event, the speeches, the signs I saw and the hope we felt that day. That hope has diminished some for various reasons, but it was exciting and inspiring to be part of it in that moment.

a significant experience that i have had was meeting my current boyfriend. he’s changed me in ways that i can’t even begin to imagine. i am so grateful to have him in my life, and i hope that he continues to chance me postively.

This year I succeeded in getting my Condo association to agree to install individual water meters in our 55 unit Condo. The result has been that our Condo fee has gone down by $47 per month and we pay only for the water we use. It has also meant that we have been able to identify leaks promptly and remedy them. I believe that our water usage has probably gone down. I will find out next month. This whole effort has made me very happy because it has benefitted us all and enabled us to conserve our natural resources.

I got married this year, it was actually a difficult process, not the saying yes, that bit was easy! But you discover a lot about yourself and your husband in the lead up to the wedding. I realised my husband and I don't process information in the same way, let alone big organisational tasks. We argued more than we ever have before, and it was tough, but ultimately we came to a better understanding of each other and how we each like to work on projects. He needs a detailed to-do list, whereas to get to the place where a to-do list can be created I believe you need to look holistically at a project to understand how all the parts fit together. The wedding itself was a truly wonderful day, although my advice to any bride is not to have too many expectations, things will go wrong and it will still be ok, things went wrong on the day and it was still wonderful. Also, for me, it was so unhelpful for people to tell me that it would be the most amazing day of my life. It was, but being told to expect it made me question whether I was having 'the most amazing time of my life, ever'. Only when I stopped questioning did I relax and have the best time ever! Lastly, perfection can never be achieved. I have very high expectations of myself and others, and I guess I can be described as a perfectionist. In planning this wedding I have had to learn that perfection is not achievable. I am striving to be content with what I have and who I am, but it's really hard, it's a daily struggle.

I was in Saskatoon renting a shitty apartment, hating my job, feeling lost and my old friend, depression, paid me a visit. This time, instead of pretending it wasn't happening, I called my sister. She got on a bus, with her baby, and came to visit. My parents showed up the next day to pack my apartment. My friends showed up the next weekend and moved me back to Calgary. I am relieved to be back in the city that feels like home. It's been one year, almost to the day, since I moved back. It was a lesson in how fast a year can pass. I don't know if I lived up to my potential over the past year. It was definitely a tough one.

One of the most significant experiences was when I returned to my host family in Jogja, Indonesia after spending two months exploring other parts of Indonesia and learning the language. I felt so grateful for everything that they did for me when I stayed with them, and given my increased language experience, I was finally able to show my gratitude a bit more. For me it felt incredibly groundbreaking to be able to do this, but in retrospect I didn't really perceive that my family found me to be any different despite "being a bit fatter" and speaking Bahasa. This affirms how being able to express gratitude though a smile, through the way you act, through spending time with people, through just being present and kind, is very powerful. Having lived with many host families throughout the past few years, one of the biggest things I have struggled with is the feeling of guilt that occurs when people open up their homes and hearts to me and I feel like I cannot reciprocate. This memory is a beautiful reminder that instead of despairing that it is very unlikely that I will be able to return the favor in a similar way due to the price of plane tickets, immigration barriers, the fact that the programs I went on discouraged me from gifting, etc., I need to instead focus on my ability to fully engage with the people who house me, moment by moment, and express my gratitude in more subtle ways. Two of the things that my instructor, Micah, said that really stuck with me were: "when you travel, you always take way more than you will ever be able to give back," and "the biggest gift you can give someone is your time." I will probably never be able to live in someone else's home and not feel some form of guilt for using their resources and being somewhat burdensome, but at least I can channel this energy into something more positive and actively just be a good human and connect with them on as deep of a level as possible.

we have two new grandsons and a third grandchild on the way.. it has been amazing, inspiring to see the girls as mothers of two and exhausting as Tita but absolutely the best.

A good friend decided she wanted to drop if my life in s fairly dramatic way. At the start, I was sad, nervous, angry. In the past few weeks, I’ve become relieved and grateful that this change is happening. We’ll see what happens next.

I got a new job. It's been great. I am so grateful. I am grateful for my good luck. I am grateful for what Robyn has done to make it possible and the encouragement she has given me. I feel amazingly lucky to have this job. I so like the work I am doing and the people I work with.

I left active duty military after serving for over four years. I've found myself still abiding by regulations and standards even though they don't apply to me anymore. I forget that I'm allowed to paint my nails or to wear earrings. I'm happy to be able to see my family more and watch my kids grow. Even though I'm happy to be done with that part of my life, I miss it. I miss my friends and the culture and the feeling of doing something bigger than just myself. I will forever be grateful to the Army and what they've done and will do for me in the future.

This year I started a committed relationship for the first time since ending my engagement in 2013. It's wonderful and terrifying and beautiful and difficult. I'm so grateful for my partner and the love he gives me. I'm so proud of myself for finally being healthy enough to love someone again. I'm so relieved to know that my heart still works. I can't wait to see what the future brings.

I got a new job doing the kind of work that I love right out of school. It made me feel like all of my work was worth something, and that I was more than my failures. I was so greatful that my passion that I had been persuing for years got to be my job right after graduation.

I became godfather to Madison Cooper. I felt very honored. It inspires me to be a better person to set a good example.

My oldest grandson graduated from high school and I was able to see all the family and friends that helped him along the way. I live a thousand miles away. I was inspired by all the love for him we shared that day. It really does take a village today.

Graduated with my MSN and passed my A-GNP boards. I am so much more relaxed and happy. I am so grateful it it over! I am so ready to begin my new future.

The election of Donald Trump has shaken me. I feel constantly exhausted by the continual hysteria. I'm an introvert, I get recharged by quiet - chaos exhausts me and this year has been continually chaotic. On the other hand, I had an extraordinary experience this summer - returning to sleepaway camp for the first time since being 17 in 1972. As the Director of Jewish Life and Learning, I found the summer extraordinarily recharging - which was especially important to me after the psychic chaos of the year.

I graduated from dental school in Omaha, NE and started practicing dentistry outside of Nashville, TN. It was a time years and years of hard work in the making. Blood, sweat, and tears (all literal) went into my becoming a dentist, and I knew that the transition from dental student to dentist was going to be another one of the toughest changes in my life. So I had so many emotions surrounding this change... Relief, gratification, inspiration, exhaustion, hopefulness, hopelessness, responsibility, fear, excitement... So many feelings.

This year my ex husband attacked me brutally. physically and emotionally I was shattered and could barely get out of bed, the depression was overwhelming. I am grateful that he is not in my life anymore. I am angry that he is still attempting to bully me through our precious children and yet I am hopeful for a better future. I look forward to next year being unmarried

I have begun to come to terms with how greatly the traumas of my youth and my clinical depression have negatively affected my life. I am incredibly resentful. I am, however, resolute that this year I will learn to work with those restrictions so that I may actually live instead of just surviving.

I experienced bullying at work while going through a series of deaths in my family. I learned that life doesn't keep. I've learned that now is the thing. I've learned that I really care about others. I've learned that trust is relative; but truth matters. I've learned that I'm worth more than I can currently imagine, and so are those around me. I've learned that I'm privileged. I've learned that I'm not the same. I'm craving focus and self-honesty in a different way. I've learned that I get to choose what I endure; and that by doing so, I teach my daughter the same practice. I've learned that I talk about me a lot; but I care more about you. I should ask more. Listen more. Love much more.

I was fired from my job with no warning. It affected everything - money, a trip to Hawaii, my self esteem, and even family planning. It gave me more time to spend with my son, and in the end I found a great job where I feel supported.

I went to a party in the desert recently, and I learned a lot about myself. I found myself codependantly relying on my loved ones and community, with unreasonable and uncommunicated expectations that they hold me and catch me when I am not doing well. I was bad at radical self reliance, and I'd like to get better. This resounds in my business decisions, financial planning, self care, and discipline/practice. I'm challenged by this new reality where I'm the one responsible for my wellbeing, and I take it seriously.

My wife and I celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary in August, and I went to my 50th college reunion in June. It is humbling and surreal to think back 54 years! I was surprised at the college reunion how very quickly my Sigma Chi brothers and I bonded back as if we had only left for summer break. One old pal and I have already planned to spend time together when he and his wife come down to Hilton Head. The even bigger deal was 50 years of marriage. It was dicey getting this planned as my wife seemed reticent over the extreme work and notable costs involved in bringing people from 12 states or so together. But it was worth it. The keynote was when my old Waiting Crew buddy showed up with his guitar and we repeated the serenade the 2 of us did 51 years ago when my then-fiance who graduated a year ahead of me came back for a visit. I am a hopeless romantic and many people cried during my over the top gesture of romantic love for Lezlie my sweet. She admitted in the end it was worth it all. We are battling some health issues now, but the glory of that special celebratory time can not be erased. I have that in my heart forever. 4 of my 5 groomsmen including best man all made it. Also, my 4 college Sigma Chis and I all married women we met on campus ... and we are ALL still together. That is a point of great pride.

I moved out of the 5 bedroom suburban home where I raised my now 24 year old son, had my professional psychotherapy practice, and watched my husband of 24 years pass away, and relocated to a 1554 square foot apartment in the city. I am indeed relieved to have the stress behind me. I am indeed grateful that I had the resources--both financial and professional--to facilitate this transition with very few sacrifices or compromises. I am exhausted by change and sadness about so many losses, though I recognize how fortunate I am that I still am safe, healthy, and sheltered. I am hopeful, but fearful, about having some better times ahead. I am longing for another chance at a loving relationship.

I began the year on a search for purpose, looking for deeper meaning in life and most importantly, a deeper understanding of the universe around me. As I worked through the year, each experience peeled away layers of my external facing mask, culminating in the ultimate discovery of what I'm meant to do. But how I'm meant to do it is still a mystery. I've come to learn finding ones purpose is only half the equation - implementing and living one's purpose each day is another step in the process.

Buying the house was probably the most significant thing that happened this year, or will happen this year. It was such a roller coaster of emotions from start to finish. Everything seemed great at first, but then there was the hiccup with them not being able to use my income to qualify us. All throughout the process I was expecting something to go wrong. And then, the day before the closing, when they called and said they were still waiting on some piece of paper that could delay the closing, that freaked me out. Even when we walked out of the closing with keys in hand, there was a certain amount of uncertainty. I'm just so glad to be done with it all. Even with a little bit of buyer's remorse, I think it was a good decision for our family, and I'm excited to continue living and enjoying this house.

Traveling to Europe: specifically Italy this summer was an extraordinary experience. Reconnecting with a precious friend in Venice was deeply moving. So much beauty, I had forgotten. How can I create more of that in my day to day life? I want to live for the joy of it, as I did in Italy. That's what I'm working on this year.

Election night was probably the most impactful and significant experience of this past year for me. I went into that night fully expecting it to end with the first woman president. Instead, I ended curled up in a fetal position on my bathroom floor, sobbing so hard I ran out of actual fluid tears to produce. In that moment, I realized how much America hated women. It wasn't a startling revelation, but the true depth of their hatred was never so crystal clear as that night. I don't think I've spent a day since then without some degree of fear.

Our son left town for college. I still am not sure of how to feel about this. Grateful, yes. Also worried?

Returning to the city I left a year ago. my relationship with Ben. (I am one week post break up as I write.) It affected me... by Allowing me to solidify my life after the dark period in boulder. I awakened into me. Stretched myself to expand into all corners of myself. I felt true joy, levity, and the aliveness that I am. I recreated friendships and started my private practice. Really...I learned surrender and the relief in letting go. I accepted a home. I let go of judgement of myself and easily accepted others with curiosity. I allowed myself to fully be my silly weird energetic self. I crossed the threshold of being my pain body. I am grateful. Immensely grateful for the friends and playtime and my adventures with ben. With ben I enjoyed him and us and our ease and playfulness. I liked who we were together. I believed in him and his capacity to do his personal growth work. We laughed and had electric chemistry that we couldn't pull away from. I am still grateful for having that time with him. A sweet balm after the dark days. I am not feeling inspired, as much as I am feeling emptied. In a good way, I believe Ben gave me a mirror for my joy and now I empty again so I can be filled up with myself fully. I am sad, but I am ok. I love him and I love who I am.

Hurt my foot running. Was resentful at first. Jealous of others who were not hurt and could still run. Since I could bike without pain, I did. Rediscovered my love of Mt Biking.

Well, I got sued. That wasn't fun. It definitely put me into a new level of adulthood. It was a reminder that life sure as hell is not fair, just like my mama always taught me. But to look on the bright side, it's finally over now, and my marriage survived (and perhaps has become even stronger, healthier, and happier than before all of this hell), and we have amazing family and friends, and life will carryon.

In January, my precious three year old Evelyn was diagnosed with POLG related mitochondrial depletion disease. It has been the most devastating year of my life but the worst is knowing that many worse years are to come. Her doctors say she will regress and eventually start having seizures and organ failure, and that this disease is incompatible with life in the long term. I can't live without her and I don't even know how to live with the knowledge that someday I may have to.

Donald Trump was elected president. I was hurt, horrified, mystified, shocked, disappointed,disgusted, sickened, ashamed, revolted... His election definetly makes me look at the United States in a way I never have, but I don't think the country has changed. It's more like the veil has been lifted and I'm seeing it and all of its ugliness. There is much good too, but I think that is more a people thing than country. I always thought we were the best country in the world and I was so proud to be American, but really since 9/11, as I've learned more of the seedier parts of our history, I doubt everything I've believed about America. As much as Barack Obama represented the America I believed we could be, his election seemed to give bigots permission to be openly and unapologetically racist. Hillary Clinton's almost successful bid for president gave mysogynists permission to"grab her by the pussy," to quote our commander-in-chief. I'm not angry or depressed anymore. I see things differently now and the United States has become very tiny in my worldview. And, I'm good with that. But I am proudly part of the resistance!

One of my best friends died. It affected me in a big way. It is still raw and I am very sad and I miss her.

I am grateful for many things in 2017. I was converted from a contractor to a full time employee - relief! I took a trip of a life time to Egypt and Jordan - amazing. The trip inspired me to get my financial house in order, so that I can travel more.

August 12 invasion by white supremacists. I am still reeling and trying to make sense of it. I'm broken.

Got my PhD from Leiden University!!!! It was the most special day of my 66 years of life. It was all about me. It started with a special lecture from one of my committee members (from Sweden), my defense, a general reception in the courtyard where my defense was held, and then dinner at a very up-scale restaurant. I got many gifts and well-wishes. I cannot express the joy at having achieved something incredibly difficult. And it was about hard work and perseverance not exceptional brains. And now I have to live up to the expectations confered with the title I have been awarded.

In the past year I lost my virginity to my best friend, it made me realize that how you trust and care about someone can change so dramatically in literally ten minutes. I'm so grateful that i got to experience this milestone in life with this specific person. it was a good choice.

I went to Israel through Honeymoon Israel and feel like that experience and the people I shared it with was life changing. I'm so thankful for spending time in that country that means so much to me and my family. The trip was amazing with all of the sights and sounds and smells. But the most significant part of it was the people, who are now family. This group is so open, supportive, and fun! I love them and know that they'll be friends for life.

I am going through a nasty divorce. I managed to find a way to connect, using compassion,with my ex-spouse, who was hell-being on destroying me. I think I found God inside me, or at least my inner spark. I will never let that bigger feeling get dimmed.

I decided to live. After years of channeling every ounce of my deteriorating energy into harming myself in any and every way I could, after years of starvation and loathing so deep and so complete that it once again culminated in nine days completely without food of any kind, after endless nights almost too long to endure as I prayed desperately for my heart to finally stop altogether, after finally coming to terms with this world and this life just not being for me, I chose to live. I decided that my darkness was too unbearable, and instead of ending my life I had to surrender to love, to help, to worthiness, to light, to existence. I decided that no matter the excruciating pain and emptiness that the path to finding myself would entail, I had to finally, finally, begin the journey. I had to choose the world, choose this life, and hold this new small seed of hope within my heart. I got up off the floor where I expected to die, I got on a plane, I cried and felt and trusted and hurt and loved, and I am so grateful. This is not to say that I am not still scared; sometimes I am so terrified I cannot breathe. Sometimes I still feel as though my chest is being crushed under the unfathomable weight of terror and silence, but nevertheless I am more grateful than words can ever express. And it is my work of this next year to cultivate that gratitude and grow its roots deep within my being, grounding me, making me safe, alive, and whole.

We got a dog named Izzy. She brings our family so much joy. I am surprised how much I enjoy having her and how she has made our family cozier. I am grateful for being able to provide a home for a dog and also that she provides us with unconditional love.

I climbed Mt Adams. I am super grateful. It wasn't something I was planning on doing. At first I wasn't sure I could even do it. I was proud of my accomplishment. It wasn't as hard as I had made it out to be. I was also amazed at the beauty of national parks in our own state. We are so fortunate to have a government that works to provide such beautiful parks. It did inspire me to want to explore our state even more!

my entire kivvun Jewish renewal experience was remarkable and inspiring.

I broke up with the man I loved more than I've ever loved any man. I thought I was going to marry him, but his mental health had deteriorated a lot over the past couple of years and it no longer felt safe to be with him. The first couple months were hard. Really hard. But once I got a bit of time away from him, I felt calmer, more grounded and lighter. My house is (mostly) clean, and I'm grateful to no longer be constantly accommodating him. I was really sad that he decided to go scorched earth on me and didn't want to continue a friendship. And that he has tried to talk smack to my friends and family about me. Fortunately they know and love me and have stuck by me. I'm excited to see what the future holds!

Wow...what a year! It is hard to choose which experience to pick. I think I will pick one that I am proud of. This year, during the summer, I had the opportunity to supervise MANY people. Although we had many ups and downs as a staff, there are a few staff that I am incredibly proud of due to their own self-growth. One of my counselors began his second summer where he left off the year before---he is incredibly warm and caring, but did not have a lot of self-confidence. Over the course of the summer, we worked together to both hone his counseling skills, as well as think about his own personal growth and journey. He mentored another counselor after I realized that I cannot be everything to everyone. He did this beautifully, and walked away from the summer feeling like a different person. I am so proud of him, and so thankful to have had the opportunity to both work with him and see the power of uplifting those around me. I am so inspired to follow him throughout his life, and to watch as others carry on in this manner. Saying goodbye to him was incredibly painful and sad, but I know that I will carry this experience with me wherever I go and throughout my professional life. Thank you, friend, for making me a better person and seeing how wonderful people can be!

At the very end of June I lost my job. I am far from grateful but I'm not surprised that it happened. I have been in a depression for months and doing my best to try to get back to where I feel I was months before that, although the depression stems from feelings and esteem. I hope that this dark moment serves as something positive when it finally clears. I am resentful towards my family for the lack of love and I am resentful towards myself for the coping mechanisms I've used in the ensuing years since issues began but I am trying to get to the point of forgiveness.

My older son's passions and efforts have been transparent and obvious to me as a parent. My younger son has been quite the opposite. To the point wher I felt it necessary to "push the baby out of the nest". I had to prepare myself for the possibility that he would severe any connection with my (us) as parents. Yet, I was convinced that this was proper and the best for all involved. He is now living on his own, working in local fast food and chasing his passion. In addition, he is now a joy to be around. He is content, almost happy, and even engages is the loving and testing type witty interplay that happens between people who trust the relationship between them. So, I am quite grateful that he has not cut off the relationship, but leans on it for support when (and only when) he sees the need for it.

Well I had a baby in January. I had no time for pain meds and had her quickly and naturally. It has been such a crazy several months being a mom and adjusting to this life. I couldn't imagine it any other way. I love my daughter and am looking forward to watching her grow!

My husband moved out in February of this year. Even though our 20 year marriage was barely hanging on by a thread, we agreed to get help and was only a few weeks away from beginning therapy. A few days after attending a required 2 day workshop (taught by our counselor) I received a text that read: "I'm not coming home tonight, I need some time by myself" I was angry, hurt, sad and resentful (leaving me with a 16 week old puppy.) Even though he was staying at a place less than 10 minutes away, I couldn't possibly see how being apart physically was going to foster feelings of understanding and connectedness. It took me months to get over the fact that we after 20+ years wouldn't be living together. I had to take each day as it came and really look at myself and how my limiting beliefs were standing between the situation and ultimately my happiness. Today we are still physically apart but much closer emotionally. I would have never had the strength to leave myself and I am now able to see how being apart kept has helped to keep us together.

My wife got pregnant, and we started the process of adoption. Pretty much simultaneously. The actual life changing part hasn't happened yet, but the process of moving in that direction already feels significant. Quite excited.

I graduated from college in May and so far everything has been falling into place pretty nicely. I got a job with the company I interned with at school in a sister office 30 minutes from home. I was finally able to buy myself the truck I’ve always wanted and my friendship with my group of friends from middle school & highschool is better than ever. Some things have changed, I stopped connecting with my friends from college a lot quicker then I expected which sucks because I spent the last four years of my life living with them. Also, my highschool sweetheart who I thought I would end up with for the rest of my life decided he was going to date someone else behind my back as things were finally in a good place again. I like to try to consider those last two things as blessings in disguise. We’ll see. All in all I’m grateful, excited, determined and ready to persevere.

I moved. So unexpected. Angry at first, but have embraced it. Embraced the process of making a home. Also met one of my husbands friends, who has become like a brother to me

So many! I moved to China! Absolutely grateful and inspired. it allowed me perspective and distance from the most toxic experience i seemed continally walking back into, took me out of my comfort zone and started the steps of getting my happy back!!

I fell in love for the first time. And realized my sexuality. It has changed my perspective on life in so many ways. The worst thing is that the person I fell in love with lives on the other side of the world and I had to go home. It was a wonderful and worthwhile experience while it lasted though and I don’t regret pursuing it as they helped me discover so many things about myself and grow in so many ways.

Alex and I bought our first house ever in July. This was huge and made me very joyful and ecstatic because it helped satisfy many needs of mine and my family, and even more wants of mine and my family.

My brother's suicide. I am angry, remorseful, grief-stricken, haunted. He passes through my mind every day. I wish I had known him. I wish he had told me something about his life. I wish he would have accepted my help.

In the past year I quit my long-time side-gig that was a source of great stress. Now I feel grateful to myself for making this change and relieved that I don't need to put myself into that situation anymore but also concerned for the future. What will it bring? How will I sustain myself financially? What is it that is still making me unhappy?

The election It's destroying the country and our democracy and making life much harder already for our most vulnerable. It's dampened my enthusiasm for my (govt) job. My mental health and sense of hope have taken real hits. Disastrous across the board.

we found out, when searching for mold in our house, that we had tons of termites. i was horrified, distressed and sickened.

This year has been crap. One of the worst years in a long time. So many issues with family, I could share many things. But, one of the most significant involves my oldest daughter and her husband. They were married two years ago and live in Seattle. We have only seen them once since then, when they visited us for a week. This past spring, we suddenly were hit with a negative credit rating and collection calls for several student loans that our daughter had taken out years ago. We've bailed her out of financial problems in the past, but this was something new. In trying to find out what was going on, her husband stepped in (all via instant messages) and said that he was handling all of their finances from now on. I tried dialoguing with him several times to assess the situation, but with each progressive communication, he became more closed and refused to share what was happening. Meanwhile, we paid the past due accounts and said that we couldn't do any more at this time due to our own financial issues. I had thought that would be it, but again we began to get collections calls. When I next broached the topic with my son-in-law he said that they would not be paying any of the loans my wife had co-signed on. So, in order to protect our credit rating, we suddenly had to come up with an extra $300 a month. There was no thank you from either of them, nor apology for letting things go and making our credit rating drop. On top of this, they both blocked us from their social media accounts, and we still are even now. So, my wife and I both feel that things will never be the same and that they have basically decided to write us out of their lives. Since this all happened, we have only heard from our daughter a few times and it has been mostly defensive. My wife finally contacted our daughter and said that she wanted to move beyond all of this, but their relationship has now devolved into talking about things like the news and the weather. After both of my parents had major issues with their parents, this just seems like more of them same. And we honestly have no idea why this has happened.

Just a year ago, I moved back to the place where I met my wife - this time bringing her and our son along with. Eight years ago the seed of our love was planted here, but we only stayed for a short time. Seven years since, we've been bouncing all over the world, finding ourselves in a different city, different digs, every year. But all of a sudden, we're no longer nomadic explorers following the whims of our individual dreams. We've become one, and are raising a family now. That initial seed that was planted eight years ago sprouted and has shot and climbed, swirling & twirling, echando raíces - wow that was fun for the two of us, but now our love has blossomed, and a new chapter is underway. This love has now been planted deep into the soil, and for the first time we must stand firm in order for our love to grow. Much like that family pillar tree that I met in the jungles on the Yunnan - Burmese/Myanmar border near Xishuangbanna...Our family must now root down for stability and climb as high as we can in the spot where we find ourselves, for it is the only way we will grow to be as majestic as those towering trees...

I auditioned for America's Got Talent. It gave me a sense of satisfaction because I know I followed my destiny! I'm very grateful. In one sense, I'm relieved it's over because it took a lot of time. On the other hand, I regret deeply that I did not progress at least one higher level. I am inspired because it is leading me to further opportunities to express myself in speeches.

The most significant thing that has happened to me has been a long time coming (since the last 10Q) yet still feels scary and unfamiliar, which is purchasing a home on my own and moving out of the home I've shared with my husband for 16 years. Even more significant will be the actual separation and then divorce, but this physical, geographical separation (cleaving . . .), setting up in a new place, getting over homesickness and trying to bond with my new home, feels like one of the biggest hurdles I've ever had to get over. I bought a "hard" house for some reason (I'm still trying to figure out myself on this one), so it isn't even just trying to get used to a new space. It is being in over my head with the challenges of a 112 year old house when I have very few "handy" skills, dealing with mice and squirrels, and plumbing issues, and no insulation, and windows that don't open, and rotting floor boards, and the other things you find out when you move into a neighborhood (barking dog--I mean constant, incessant, crazymaking barking dog; cat who poops in my garden; smells of garbage). I have moments when I look at my space and I see myself, freedom, hope, comfort. I have moments when I look at my space and feel desperately lonely, lost, and even despairing. It is a love/hate relationship, much like the one I have with myself right now. My house is me--broken, oversized, aging, charming, full of potential for neglect or for beauty.

In 2017 I lost 2 very special close friends- Irwin and Shapour. Each loss affected me deeper and harder thank I had anticipated. I've been working on acceptance of death as part of life for a long long time, and I've come a long way. However, I've noticed that I need more work Change is hard for me, and death is the ultimate change. It's made me realize how I need to detach more and more, and how I need to appreciate the present moment more and more because there's no knowing how long things last.

Got the job

After experiencing growing and deepening feelings for a friend over many months, I decided to take the plunge and explore the possibility of a polyamorous relationship with him - I have been monogamous all my life, most recently for over 5 years with my now-husband. My husband was extremely supportive, the now-boyfriend was interested, and other important people in my life have encouraged my pursuit of happiness as well. I am so grateful to have such an incredible support network, and so much love in my life. I'm relieved that I was able to change this aspect of my relationship with my husband in a way that, if anything, brought us closer together. I am however occasionally nervous about the prospect of sharing my relationship more broadly, e.g., with family members.

I started dating my sweetie! I feel... excited, hopeful, interested, intrigued and also very, very challenged. I'm not sure where the line is between "this is good and there are some hard things" and "this is nice but the hard things outweigh the great pieces." I'm feeling frustrated to not have the answer of "Does this end well?" I'm trying to reframe the question to: "Given that I want to be with this person right now, what can I do to make this work well right now?" Which is really different than "Do I want to be with him?"

Several significant events have happened. Difficult to chose one. My job was eliminated! Last year it was my obsession. Now it's gone! I'm so relieved. I'm inspired to make my life different-never to settle for that type of negative atmosphere again. I have more freedom to be creative. However it's also a bit disturbing how the void has filled so quickly with miscellaneous things. I'm being creative but still trying to make money which draws me away from creativity once more. My mother was diagnosed with bipolar and narcissistic personality disorder. I am also relieved. I've spent too much time trying to understand what the problem is. Now I have something clear.

Joan had surgery on her ankle in July. She went to recover at the cottage, and because I told her that it looked like she was dragging something behind her, she tried to turn around on her scooter and fell on her ankle. This resulted in excruciating pain that wouldn't go away. She was later diagnosed with Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), and we've discovered that there is no cure. She is in constant pain, constant increasingly awful pain. It exhausts her, makes her grumpy, makes her cry. Yet, she is so strong. I would have melted down - had a nervous breakdown if I would have been told you'll likely never get better. Yet, she continues to have a positive attitude, is going through PT, and it is getting better.

This has been a very strange year, professionally. ---I went back to work as a teacher for the first time in many decades just before the new year started, but was mistreated, disrespected, slandered, libeled and driven out of the job within 6 months. Even though I felt somewhat satisfied as a teacher (reaching students no one else had been able to reach, helping several complete their G.E.D.s, and moving others along who had been stalled,) and a teacher trainer (my co-teacher had never had education to be a teacher; she had been a vet, so she had said that she learned a lot from me), the attendance dwindled so much that we often only had 1 or 2 students for weeks at after Jan. 2., It was a complete waste of my time and skills to be there. I was relieved to be "laid off" in mid-February. ---Despite much effort, many applications and several interviews, I still haven't found a good place to put my skills, experience, knowledge and expertise to use. Why is that? ---I also haven't finished my fourth Volume in my sci-fi series even though it has been more than 3/4 finished for over a year. My urge to write has flown. ---I stopped doing my online conversational talk show about one year ago as well, due to technical problems (not mine; YouTube's) that took more than a month to resolve. By the time I could return to it, I didn't want to do that any longer, either. I feel guilty, as if I'm wasting my life. I have so much to offer and nowhere to offer it. What to do with myself, professionally, is the burning question of my 64th year on this planet. Hope I can figure that out.

Getting pregnant..it brought faith and appreciation for the small things more into my life.

One significant experience that has happened this past year was going on the Big Trip to Israel. Oh my gosh, it was amazing! This trip furthered my connections to Israel and Judaism. One of my favorite moments had to have been when we celebrated the first and last Shabbat at the Western Wall. By this point, we had made a full circle of the country, and we were preparing to return home. I will always remember that during that Friday night, my decision to become a rabbi became more solidified, and I will forever be grateful for this. This mainly happened when I walked through the crowd up to the Wall, and I sang the Sh'ma and V'ahavta to myself. After, I looked up at the Wall and up at the sky, and I just knew right then and there that my connection to Judaism and this Holy Land will only grow. Another point on the trip that I felt pretty connected was when we celebrated Shabbat services on Saturday Morning at HUC, because I may be looking into this school in my future.

I decided to finally get healthy. I started counting calories & moving. I received a Fitbit for Mother's Day so I try to walk at least 6500 steps per day.

My cat got cancer and died quite suddenly. It made me question lots if things like whether it is ethical or unethical to give her chemo, how to savor time when it is limited, how to mourn, how to sit with sadness, now to feel grateful for what you still have. At times I was surprised by how much sadness I felt and how much I didn't feel. So strange that it came and went in waves when the situation was so consistent.

One year and 11 days ago I had a new baby. We didn't plan to have two kids but he is a huge blessing to us. I feel like it affected me in many ways. We have less money and less time however we are settling into new routines as a family and we don't take any time together for granted. Now when I am home after work I only focus on the kids and home life. There's no time for work related stuff even if I wanted to! I'm grateful for our family the way it is. I am so grateful that I got to do the kid thing again. There are moments so unique and wonderful between a mama and a newborn or infant that I am so happy to have experienced again.

Found out I need surgery for something important but not life-threatening. I will be grateful it goes well. The process leading up to it has involved several doctors, lots of tests, etc, and has been something of a travail of dealing with the medical and health insurance establishments and the hassles that can involve. I am fortunate in that I have a decent healthcare plan from my job and I don't have financial concerns. I can only imagine what this process would be like for someone with poor or no coverage or financial worries. Which means I have viewed the efforts by the party in power in Washington to undo what progress has been made the last few years in this area with even more dismay than I normally would have. But I better not get started on that topic!

I went to Ghana to teach teachers. I thought the experience would be wonderful but it was so much more than I expected. On one level it was so much harder then I thought it would be. I have not had to think and write in academic language for a long time and suddenly I was writing and communication using terms I have not used in years. The poverty and lack of resources were much worse than I had imagined and so again I felt somewhat at a loss. But the work was so much more then the term wonderful can describe. Each day was a challenge I met and overcame. I stepped out way out of my comfort zone and found skills I didn't know I had. I made deep friendships and did something that really changed lives, changed me. I left wondering if I could handle the unknown and came back knowing that there is great personal growth in reaching past what you know to what lays just beyond. I can back a stronger me, someone who is ready to venture into the new great beyound.

when I moved to where I am today, I had to divide my dogs because you could only have one. I had the father and son. My cousin took the father to live with her. 7 months ago my cousin moved down the hall from me and now the father (Raku) of my dog Chalee, Raku live's down the hall from his son, my dog chalee. I get to babysit Raku when they go out and I take them both for walks. I know that only God could of worked this out. The decision to separate them was heartbreaking. I went through every emotion known to man. I am relieved the dogs are back together again. I am more so inspired with the way that God will move mountains to heal your heart.

I had a serious relationship with a wonderful man for the first time since my divorce. Although I have certainly dated and had sex since my marriage ended, I have not told another man (other than my ex-husband) that I loved him, until Steven. The relationship opened me up emotionally and physically. I am incredibly grateful to Steven for showing me how it feels to be adored, to be loved and to be cherished. Although I did end the relationship--when I realized we weren't right for each other--I will always remember Steven fondly for the growth the relationship provided me.

Got back with my boyfriend, made long distance work, and am planning to move in together - interstate. I suppose it's affecting what I'm planning after graduating university. I'm really happy, it's a bit crazy to be making such big decisions, but it makes me hopeful and positive about the future.

I finally got a full-time job!!! Since moving to GA in 2011, I'd only been able to find part-time work. I'd become so depressed and demotivated with my job search that I was mentally preparing to pack up and go back to NJ. They say there's a reason for everything and, while I don't really believe that, in this case I think it holds true. Most everything about this job merits having had to "wait" so long for it to come to me - the location/easy commute, pay/benefits/perks, plus I have my own office for the first time in my life and like my boss and coworkers. I am grateful and relieved. Now to get the rest of my life in order...

In the past year our country elected the wrong president. Now a horrible person is in charge of the White House, the country, the environment, and our safety. I'm so concerned and horrified. I've also realized that I have been a part of the problem with racism in our country. I have sat at a place of comfort and benefit, rather than acknowledging this wrong and righting it. I commit to doing something, anything, to making the world a better place. Every. Damn. Day.

This past year I joined my high school’s wrestling team. I had never done the sport before, or any organized sports team for that matter, so it was a pretty significant experience. I am so glad I joined. Not only did I learn something new, it made me gain confidence in my abilities.

I got a new job working for the metro. I love it. I worked for DPW for years. For 15 years. Never got any appreciation or promotion did not realize how unhappy I was until after I left and people see me now and they're like wow you look so much better you smile. I miss the people from DPW but I still see them once in a while everyone wants to leave. Thankful for the experience though because it's make me more resourceful and sometimes even more commanding

My rabbi recommended a parenting book called How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk. I bought it, read it, and it has been a life changer. My teenage daughter has been struggling for a long time with anger and sadness, and this book has helped me understand how to talk to her so she feels that her feelings are respected and that I'm not trying to "fix" her. I feel grateful that lines of communications have been opened a little between me and my precious beloved daughter. I'm hoping it will keep getting better.

My brother-in-law got married in Texas. I'll admit I was annoyed at being forced to go out to the middle of nowhere for the event, but of course I'd do it. Just as I'd help out and be there for the family. That's what family is for. And this event was the perfect reminder of who I am and who I want to be. By being somewhere where we had to be creative and put forth the effort, it brought to the forefront the resourcefulness and helpful instincts I want to represent me. I reveled in spending time with family, enjoyed the slow pace that wouldn't allow anything but mellowness, and appreciated the break from the hubbub of life at home.

Jonah had cancer. A rumor. At 2.5 years old. I will never be the same. My relationship with him, with Foster, wit Ethan... With our families, and tgenmedical community, and religion and god. All changed. Now he is cancer free and we are moving forward, but we are forever changed. I am older now. A little less idealistic. Pragmatic I guess you could say. My baby had cancer. And he really was a baby. That's just not something that should happen. And yet I'm acutely aware that as far as pediatric cancer goes, we are the lucky ones.

Ever since I was a child, writing has been my way to express myself. I have been blogging regularly since 2009, and was writing regularly before then. In the past several years, I was steadily writing one blog post per week. It didn't take any special effort; I just thought about it each week and every week I felt inspired by something new. Then, when the 2016 election happened, something broke inside, and I haven't written a thing since. It makes me feel sad. I wonder when I will feel inspired again, and when I will write again.

Obtaining a position with my current organization was a significant experience this past year. I have been with the organization for only four months now, but it has a large impact on me. I work in a great community of Toronto, one that I did not even know existed before this. From working in this community I have learned a lot about working with children, and about myself. I want to grow with this organization, but today I found out that I did not get the Coordinator position that I applied for. I am not resentful to the hiring team for their decision, though I do plan on meeting with them to discuss what I can do to further my experiences to become successful in the future.

I met my new granddaughter. I am very grateful and happy. She brings us so much joy. She has given me a new focus in life.

Events happened more than experiences and the events led to experiences. The event that I felt most traumatized by was the overdose death of my nephew. The experience was deciding to go to his funeral and staying with mom for the week. It's very difficult to give support to my brother and sister in law as they habitually push me away anyway. But I was able to provide solice to my mom and I'm glad I took the time to go. I am left with feelings of guilt and resentment. The event that was and will grow into a blessing was the birth of my grand daughter and my experience as a new grand ma. I am grateful and happy to love this new beautiful soul. I can tell she is an old soul in a new body and I think she will grow to be amazing. This will be a joy for both me and her grand dad. And it's fun to share the parenthood experience with my son and daughter in law.

There seemed to be a lot of painful endings in the past year. The most painful of all was getting laid off from the job that I loved. The situation leading up to it was awful. I saw something unjust happen and I spoke up about it. Being a thorn in their side, I was a problem that needed to be gotten rid of and that was what they did. Sometimes I think that I really should have taken them to court over it. But even through all of that heartache, the self worth issues, the crippling depression, and the rawness that I still feel every time I see something from my former agency....I am in a better place now. I earn $8 more an hour, my stress level has drastically decreased, things seem to be getting better. I haven't fully healed, and I am not sure that I ever will. While I don't understand if there is fate or destiny, part of me knows that this needed to happen. If I hadn't been forced to leave, I think that the job would have killed me. So I survived...and I am starting to thrive, hopefully that will continue, but at least I know, I am pretty damn resilient.

My old employer, the telecoms company, went bust and so I needed to look for a new job. It was a real bargain-basement operation, with very low pay and no benefits. I was looking half-heartedly for a while, and so it gave me the impetus to put a lot more effort into getting away from the place. I'd say that I'm relieved. It sucked, and I'm glad I left.

I became a mother! It's changed everything and I am so grateful for every sweet funny crazy moment with our Lula. She has also connected us to a larger community of wonderful people. Feeling it takes a village more and more and it feels great!

I got married in the last year and I feel grateful and blessed and also relieved the stress and pressure regarding finances is nearly over! We took a lot on but i wouldn't change it for the world! My now husband along with my mum and mother in law have encouraged and inspired me to change jobs and also take on a course to help me progress and grow further. For that I am so pleased.

Grateful, relieved, and inspired. After three carpenter-contractors and one architect flaked on (firstly) drawing up plans for and (secondly) building a deck to replace my old one (that was falling apart) I finally found someone to help draw the plans--and after five iterations the city accepted them and gave me the build permit (for a whopping $650!); I got back in touch with two old high school buddies, whom I hadn't seen for years, and it turns out they're both professional carpenters, who have agreed (after a years of begging--lol) to come up from Central California (Gilroy / Santa Cruz area) and build my deck to specs; I also got in touch with an old work connection to get lumber at cost!!! Additionally, I've recently taken up DIY / youtube carpentry as a new (but meaningful and useful) hobby---and I AM SO INSPIRED. I have lost my fear of cosmetic remodeling in my home--and I am gaining so much confidence, I'm considering joining the local carpenters' union. Also - I've been writing songs on my guitar a lot. :-) Music has become the most important thing. Had a huge yard sale. Got rid of 20 years worth of old stuff. Again, grateful, inspired. Saw the eclipse, and made some incredible new friends in Scio, Oregon. Love!

I have begun my internship and passed the NCC board. I am grateful that the exam is over, inspired to be seeing clients on my own.

The most notable experiences that happen thus far in 2017 was that my mother passed away at 56 years old from alcoholism on Feb 10, 2017. After many years of anticipating this outcome it was still gut wrenching to live through. Ultimately, my sister and I flew out to watch my mother fade away into the unknown of the other side. As painful as it was to watch someone die (in a very inhumane, long drawn out and painful way) it was undoubtedly cathartic. We were finally released from demons that haunted my mother through her alcoholism as well as the power she had over us to make us feel somehow responsible for it, unworthy and unloved. Alcoholics are great at blaming everyone else for their actions and this alone had caused a cascade of emotional pain and depression throughout my own life. On a positive note, my sister and I were also set free of her pitting us against each other which had previously caused deep, painful rifts in our relationship throughout the years. It forced us to deal with an insurmountable amount of pain together. (Operative word was: together). When you live through an experience like this it simply alters you. She was the only person that truly understood what it felt like and by default it made us see eye to eye on something. Living through this death helped my sister and I heal and moved us forward on the path of building a better relationship with one another. It's been 7 months since this all happened and I am truly thankful my sister and I are closer than we've been since childhood. That alone was worth experiencing the pain of losing our mother together.

Empty nest for the full year, for the first time. Hurrah! My husband and I are delighted to be alone in our home. Our two sons are both living in Los Angeles now, further away than we would like, but both living independently!! It was just about this time last year that our older son, our "failure to launch", moved out there to be near his brother. There have been a number of mini-crises, but he now has a full time job, and a shared apartment, and is starting to be financially self-sufficient. We are proud of him, and relieved. And, we have been enjoying just being a couple together, again, after all these years.

Late Feb 2017, I found out I had an ovarian tumor. At the time, I was told it was small. I was leaving in a week to help take care of my nana who lives across the country. Doctors said it was safe to leave and recheck the tumor in a few months. While away, I started feeling sick. After 2 months, I got checked again. The tumor had grown. It was now 4-5 inches. I started to feel anxious like I just wanted to deal with it. I was advised to hurry home. I saw a local OBGYN. I was told that it was pretty urgent to have my ovary and the tumor removed. They said my insurance would get back to me/them in one week. One week came and went. I called the doctor and unsurance; it turned out the staff did not send my claim through to insurance. I was concerned. When I asked the staff at the doctor why, they said that "elective hysterectomies (for trans men) are not urgent." I was shocked, angered, and upset. I explained that I had a tumor and asked if they read my file. I wish I could say this was the only time it happened, but several staff made this same mistake and it pushed back surgery one month. Now, I am two month post op and SO happy its over. I am so graetful for my partner, relieved the tumor was not cancerous, and am ready to be fully healed. I am patiently waiting.

I went to uni. I was frightened at first, but the university, the city, and the people have made me grow in so many ways as a person. When I came to Edinburgh I was scared and awkward and my brain was sluggish. I was basically still recovering from my rough High School years. Now I can hardly recognize myself from a year ago. Yes, I am still pretty awkward in many situations but I have achieved so much. I am doing excellently academically. I have a good relationship with some of the lecturers. I am working on things that I find interesting and I have never been more pro-active in my life. My friends are great and I have regained joy in my old hobbies. So many of the people that I work with day to day are incredibly brilliant and I feel intimidated by them when I talk to them, but I just try to learn as much as I can from them. I hope I can grow as much this year as I did last. If I keep this up one day I might be unstoppable.

Last year, my answer to this question was about starting to write a novel. At the time, it was a very exciting thing for me. After hitting a major conflict in the direction I was taking the novel, I ended up taking a break from writing for almost 11 months. I am back to writing again now, and am at about 30k words so far. But when I read the question this year, instead of immediately thinking of my own life, the only thing I could think was that Donald Trump was elected president. As I did not vote for him, this was an extremely disruptive event in the past year. But much more than the election itself, the massive shift to an ever more divided nation has been the most impactful on our lives, and not in a good way. I have disengaged in so much this past year, out of anger, disbelief, and frustration. I barely touch social media anymore because people are being so ugly. I cannot believe the reality that we have reached at this point in our development. It is incredibly sad to see so much hatred. It is because of this scenario, and the wider view of all the horrid things taking place across the globe, that I have a very somber outlook this year. Never in my 44 years have I felt such a lack of hope for the future. I know that everything that goes wrong can be fixed later, and I have some faith that “everything always works out”, but I see an awful lot of pain and suffering before we reach that eventuality. This will definitely be an overarching theme in my responses this year.

My mother fell while on vacation and broke her hip. She had to have surgery in Norway. This upended her life and made her more dependent than she ever has been as an adult. This upended my life when I dropped everything and went to Norway to be with her and went into care taker mode in every moment of my spare time after we got back. This challenged my sense of self and responsibility, and finding a balance between my needs and being supportive to her is difficult. It has brought up a lot of fear of becoming old, losing my independence, and having my life reduced to something confining and small. And more than that, the realization of just how much I love her and do not want to lose her.

Well just today this came to a close: I was pregnant, but I miscarried. Well, I haven't miscarried yet? I haven't bled yet. But there is no embryo in my uterus! It's been a rollercoaster of emotions. From surprise/worry at conception, to excitement/imagining the future as we accepted pregnancy, to surprise/relief/sadness/everything when we learned the pregnancy was not successful. I want to share this with people because miscarriage happens 30% of the time! That's huge! It's not at all uncommon. I've heard lots of people speak openly about having trouble conceiving, but I've never heard folks speak openly about miscarriage. I have miscarried! It's a thing!

I told my father the ways that he has hurt me and my family and I cut off contact with him. I feel relieved but I know that there is deep sadness and guilt below the surface. This is especially obvious since I have tumultuous dreams about my father on a regular basis.

My youngest son won a state championship race after focusing his efforts on achieving this goal, motivating his relay teammates, and working his hardest day in and day out. I am grateful that this experience occurred because it is the first time in 18 years that his level of effort, talent, motivation, leadership and sheer tenacity paid off with the accomplishment of his goal. I believe that it changed his outlook on life, his belief in himself and hard work, in his understanding of politics, and the benefit and extraordinary potential of teamwork. His behavior and work ethic have matured. I am grateful for the empowerment he feels. I am relieved that he is starting to understand his potential.

I would say cheating on my girlfriend...I feel terrible about it...all three times it's happened. I think I felt relief at first, escape, but then the sadness, regret, and shame all kicked in. It seems like I was so pent up that I had to do something about it. Perhaps it was just sexual tension, but I think it was also something deeper. Some sort of deep, fucked up desire that can never be quenched or resisted no matter how good my life or partner is. Perhaps that's very sad, but maybe that's how life is for everyone, they're just better at dealing with it than me. Either way, I now feel aimless, ambivalent, and a little resentful of my own flawed nature that would add more lies, more pain, more unhappiness to my life.

Fairly consistently practicing mindfulness - this has significantly decreased my anxiety and overall stress about life. I am very grateful for finding balance and taking control of my response to life events Meeting T- extremely grateful as it has given me great joy and happiness that I didn't think I would feel again.

After an intense spring of travel for filming, I collapsed with two neck hernias and severe burnout. I was stuck on the couch for almost two months. In the fall I discovered I lost all my passion for working hard. Nothing seems to matter any more. Being around specific people is the only thing that brings me pleasure, but my endurance for social interaction is limited. In general, I'm exhausted and cynical about everything. I'm very bored. I'm not sure what to make of this complete about face in my personality and professional identity. I'm trying to ride it out and not force myself to do things that are meaningless or abhorrent to me. Who knows how this will turn out?

I went to China. I got to know new friends from home and abroad. My favorite part was cycling atop the Fortifications of Xi’an, but the part that sticks with me is walking to the convenience store every day. After Oliver dropped me off and before class began I had a bit less than a half hour to myself. I needed to stock up on water bottles and try out the ice cream. Everyone knew I was American, and they liked that. I was not put on a pedestal, but I was respected and regarded. It felt nice. Everyone was forgiving of my lingual stumbling and appreciated what language I had. Later at the marketplace a girl who looked to be a little older than me handed me some tissues without a word on account of all of my sweat. It was not so much that it was scalding hot, it was more that it was constantly hot. Speaking of embarrassing bodily mishaps, it took me two weeks to realize that my host family’s toilet cannot handle toilet paper, and that I was supposed to discard of toilet paper in the trash can. It was so embarrassing when it clogged. My trip gave me confidence. It proved that I was capable of experience and showed me that I had inherent potential to experience, and that is worth so very much. I take my capacity to experience for granted, and my gratitude for both it and the trip cannot be understated. I miss my Chinese family. My motherly host mother, fatherly host father, and my brotherly host brother, Oliver. What hurts more is the thought that they might miss me. But we were all better from the experience.

I can think of nothing significant, good or bad, happening in 2017. Oh, forgot...did a lot of traveling including a 15 day cruise on the Baltic Sea. Wonderful trip with great memories.

I got pregnant, and am due any day now. I'm only beginning to comprehend how this affected me, but I'm a mix of excited and terrified as we approach getting to meet this new little person. I'm very thankful that it has been an uncomplicated pregnancy, though that doesn't mean it has been easy. I understand that I'm standing on the cusp of one of the biggest life-changing events there is, and it's an interesting liminal space to behold.

My husband and I started the process to adopt a child and start our family. This has been many, many years in the making, and we delayed starting it for several reasons. We were both scared to get started, but now that the initial stages have been completed, we're just bored! Until we hear back about a potential match from our agency, it seems there's nothing for us to do but wait. Thankfully, I'm sure the prize will be worth the wait.

This year, I got engaged to the love of my life! I am so excited to begin this new chapter in our life and get married! I am extremely grateful that I have found someone to share my life with!

I turned 50! Wow! I had a wonderful party with my friends, people came to dance, drink and have a good time, which is exactly what I wanted. And I have slowly lived into this moment of being 50 - being clearer about who I am, and who I am not and letting go of what I am not. Probably not going to win a Pulitzer, be a world-traveling journalist, weight 40 pounds less - so I can let go of all that, whew! that's a load off my shoulders. I am also living into the experience of not being as concerned with what other people think. It is so refreshing and liberating to not second guess every single decision. All that on top of the terrible year our country has had makes me feel renewed enough and energized enough to keep up the fight for freedom, equality, and justice!

My mom passed away earlier this year. It left me absolutely heath broken. She was my best friend. It felt like my whole world fell apart. She hadn't been sick and she was actually very young, only 43, and now my boyfriend and I are starting to plan a wedding and I don't even know how to do this with out her. I just want my mommy back.

My son moved and is now within 20 miles of where I live. He has previous lived in another part of the country. I'm looking forward to getting to know him better and he me. I really never thought he'd move from his home state so it was a surprise when his sister told me he was moving. He had said nothing. It will be fun to have him here and do things together that we've not been able to do for more than 20 years.

A significant experience was an argument I had with my father with regards to my attitude. As a young, well-educated, professional who has experienced success thus far in my career, I was overconfident, if not arrogant, when I started my business, and didn't heed the advice of many people. This January following a contentious phone call with my father in which I was not cooperating, he finally exploded and chewed me out for being arrogant. I deserved it -- the medicine tasted bitter but it was exactly what the patient needed.

My grandma's passing (12/8/2016) had an impact on me as she was one of a few significant people in my life. I'm not sure why or what triggers my memories of her. I catch myself reminiscing our shared past, and remembering specific questionable characteristics she embodied. For instance, being Korean during the Japanese occupation period in Korea, she has always been a bit controversial among her peers in that she would be an advocate for the Japanese people. Claiming that one of the best people she met were Japanese - specifically her neighbors in old time Korea. I admire her for that stance, not because it's so counter-cultural, but because she sincerely believed it. So unlike the characteristics of a collective culture, she was one to stand in her convictions. I dunno why, but it's a type of saving grace to me. Something that speaks to my disenchanted heart.

I had my knee injury at the beginning of the year, which led to two subsequent knee surgeries, 16 weeks of being on crutches, and 12 weeks of being in a brace. It's seven months later, and I'm still far from a full recovery. It completely shifted my perspective and reminded me to not take physical movement and the abilities of my body for granted. I learned, in a somewhat painful way, who in my community was going to be there to help me and who wasn't. It made me realize how important those connections are and those friends and relationships are that step up to help. It also made me think about those in other situations that wouldn't have been able to have the recovery I've had. Whether because of dire poverty, lack of healthcare, society's view of medical intervention, many people around the world would have just had to limp around for the rest of their lives. I'm very grateful.

Much as I want to talk about the 2016 election I'd like to focus as I go into Rosh Hashana on something positive. I got a residency! I'm enjoying it so far, about 3 months (not quite) in, and it was a stressful time applying and interviewing and waiting so I'm really relieved and grateful now. I started 10Q in 2015 when I was going back to school and I feel accomplished that I'm on the track I intended to be on professionally.

I experienced one perfect day performing in Norwich Catholic Cathedral with the Zemel choir in June. Good company, no grief from home. Really in the moment, sitting on a bus, not a care in the world chatting away to my friend. And performing was life-giving and a joy. I try to hang onto the way it felt but it's slipping away.

I discovered my hip implant was poisoning me. It had destroyed much of the soft and hard tissue around it - much, as I later learned, is permanent damage. On Jan 17th I had revision surgery. I've been recovering ever since. Three hip dislocations, several complications and at the end of the day they have to do another surgery that will leave me even less mobile. I lost my manager job during the early recovery, still upset about that, and have not been able to practice yoga - tricky since I'm a yoga teacher - for almost a year now. It's been hard. I heard from my lawyer today - I have to make a major decision about the lawsuit against the manufacturer - who has recently decided not to honour a previous settlement for this sort of thing. All in all, I'm resentful and still looking for the good that will come from this.

Es dificil contestar eso, han sido unos dias, semanas, quiza un par de meses de cambio. Leyendo mis respuestas del año pasado puedo ver con más perspectiva que cosas han cambiado. Una de ellas es que mi papá recientemente obtuvo trabajo, aunque no es la gran solucion a las cosas. Mi tia se fue este año, hace unos meses, que nos dejo apretados. Estuve llendo a terapia, y he poco a poco dejado de ser el pilar de mi familia, pero porsupuesto que eso no resuelve los problemas economicos. Hace un par de semanas que comence una relacion con Vero. Aun no se que siento, me confundo, unos dias estoy bien, otros estoy preocupado, estresado. Es muy pronto para saber mas. Ayer hubo un sismo en la ciudad de mexico. Obviamente eso también es una expreiencia que sucedio. En general? ahora mismo, mi experiencia es Vero, estoy feliz de haberla conocido, pero no se aun como me siento... más a futuro. Definitivamente es la persona mas interesante, y complicada que he conocido en mucho tiempo. No digo complicada como algo malo, lo digo porque es mucho mas de lo que aparenta. Lo digo porque su personalidad me intriga, me llama. La forma que ve el mundo, a los demas, su sentido del humor, de la moral. Tiene sentimientos hacia mi. Nos gustamos, nos llamamos, pero llevo demasiado poco tiempo para saber a que nivel o como, si es que pueden avanzar las cosas. Mi vida no es mala, pero mentiria si dijera que estoy 100 satisfecho con lo que tengo. Material, metas, espiritu.

Dan and I got married. I was thrilled beyond belief and relieved that we finally got married after 12 years.

My son's apartment in Florida was destroyed by a fire. I was grateful because it helped us start a new chapter of our lives. Renters' insurance mitigated our monetary losses and it allowed us to get our son the help he needs.

Trump was elected President, and that has been a disaster since day one. He's ripping so many people of their rights...rights in the workplace, rights to be in this country, rights to healthcare, personal rights for who we are all born to be. He jeopardizing our country's welfare on so many counts and threatening other countries in the process. The other significant experience was the cruise I took by myself. It was a lesson in being alone, a lesson in being happy and content with myself during my travels. I had to rally sometimes to participate...participate in my own life. I got myself to London to an exhibit at the Tate. I got myself on the dance floor by myself, only to be joined by someone. I had to confront myself and determine what I wanted to do at every turn: rest, eat, go on an excursion, talk to people, sit alone, etc. I succeeded on all fronts.

I had a close friend die. It was a tough experience because this person was also my business partner and it forced me to reflect on the business and to go a different route. She inspired me though and I am grateful to have had her in my life.

This past winter we had an abundance of rain after years of drought. I was so relieved and became very hopeful about having a summer free of wildfires. This was also the first summer in a few years that I had a partner to do things with. I planned numerous outdoor adventures for us over the summer, trying to access the quality of connection I had with the outdoors before the drought became an ongoing reality. I found that all the clinging I brought to the planning became a sort of control and that this got in the way of being nourished by our trips the way I had yearned for. I also found that I was clinging to the past rather than being willing to let go and find out what my relationship is to nature now.

As did many others, I drove several hours to be able to witness the total eclipse. I was with a good friend, and we found a lovely, quiet cemetery for the event. While waiting for the eclipse to start, we spent our time replacing flowers that had blown out of vases, and pulling a few weeds here and there. What was surprising to me was the difference between the 99% eclipse and the total eclipse. It was like we had entered a different world for those few minutes. The silence, the dimness, and the 360 degree soft red glow around the horizon were like nothing I had ever experienced. It felt very spiritual, and that feeling has stayed with me since then every time I think about it. I will be forever grateful to have this memory.

Breaking up with my ex boyfriend and learning that I am happier without him. This was such a significant experience because our relationship was constantly up and down and emotionally I couldn't handle it anymore. It inspired me to be my own person and do what I love without having to worry about what someone else thinks of my decisions.

I woke up one morning and I had tremendous difficultly walking. I went the route with medical professionals to discover the cause. It was related to a long established issue that had not given me any trouble for many decades. Then 6 weeks later I woke up again (happy to say) and I was able to walk again without pain and with greater mobility. I AM SO GRATEFUL!!! and Relived. I am more sensitive and appreciative of my ability to get around. I try not to worry about a return of this condition and choose to do as much as I can while I can, I will not feel sorry for myself and i will continue to participate in life.

I found anxiety medication that works. I am no longer suicidal. I am finally moving forward with my life. This isn't to say there aren't bad day, there are, but things are so, so much better. The medication balance is finally right. Now I plan to focus on therapy. And I have finally found a therapist that I think I can work with. This has changed everything. I no longer want to die. I can see a future again. I believe that I can change and grow and that my best years are not only behind me but ahead of me too. I am both immensely greatful and relived. I could not have gone on as I was, not and have had anything approaching a life worth living. During that stretch of time I got to learn the difference between living and alive. It is not a place I want to return to. And I am so greatful to modern medicine for the drugs, stacy for the support and for myself for not giving up even thought I really, really want to. I am inspired to keep working with meditation and with my therapist. I want to start seeing her either every other week or weekly for a few months to get some stuff nailed down. Want to be able to ask for a raise. I want to be a better person, less angry, better able to stand up for myself and others without ending up so full of rage that I just have to walk a way all together. I also want to care less about what other people think of me, and stop needing the approval of others so much. I need to be able internalize my own worth and ignore the opinions of others.

My mother died after 20 years with Alzheimer's. I was saddened but relieved, knowing it was such an unfair thing to have happened to her.

I learned that I am a grandmother and I'm very grateful. Unfortunately, I still have not met him. I have to wait for him and my son to agree to go to the next step and connect with each other before I can establish a relationship. I sold my house of 22 years and moved to a condo. I'm really glad about this. I feel quite relieved to have the transition behind me and to not have the risks of owning and caring for a house and yard hanging over my head.

So many to choose from. Mark left for college, after having had both his motorcycle and car stolen. Felix had his hysterectomy. Dorothe came home for a month, and we got to experience the eclipse. Ma and Pa bought an apartment at the retirement place. I wrecked my own car. Danny came out as trans also. I took 3 classes from Etienne in CST. I feel like these are all really significant. Each of them has been overwhelming in a different way. All of them have positive aspects, but all of them also have been challenging. I kind of feel weirdly floaty and sometimes like reality is just dissolving. Is there just one that stands out? no, I can't pull out one as more important or significant than any other.

In April I attended a service immersion trip to the Dominican Republic. The typical international service experience leaves travelers with a sense of worldliness and a new appreciation of the wealth they possess and the comfortable lives they lead. I did not have the typical service trip; I returned home and immediately yearned to return home. Although I am grateful for all of the privileges I enjoy in the United States, an envy for the simple contentment of the community I encountered in the Dominican Republic dwells within me. The words to describe this truly unique experience are elusive, so many people condemn my sentiments as illogical and ungrateful. These condemnations augment my envious sensations as I grow to realize that the developed word is a skeptical and unforgiving place. Many people deem any scarcity of material goods as poverty, but from this perceived poverty grows an emotional and spiritual opulence unknown to these people. My new ability to recognize the importance of this intangible wealth is an invaluable result of my service experience, and I am grateful for this experience. It also fostered new friendships while strengthening old ones; friendships are a vital part of building the wealth of people in poverty. Relationships are undervalued in societies drowning in “things,” so I cherish all opportunities I get to develop my relationships with others. The people I met in the Dominican Republic unknowingly exposed to me that my previous lifestyle and mindset prevented me from reaching my full potential as a human being; for this, I am infinitely thankful.

I quit working for an alcoholic pathological narcissist. Much, much, much happier doing what I do now for work. And the walking out on him during a drunk hissy fit felt great.

Having my heart broken by my ex and subsequently turning that pain around via therapy, yoga, and focusing on my own validation eventually led me to the most epically successful online dating run in history and introduced me to my current boyfriend. (Not that being in a relationship is always the "happy ending") I'm forever impressed with my own ability to overcome sadness, grief, fear, and turn it into growth. I wouldn't be the person I am today without that experience, as painful as it was. Being ok today with myself is more than I would have dared to ask for, but here I am holding that! My own resiliency inspires me and shows me that I can handle whatever life throws my way.

Nothing really springs to mind, but something did happen yesterday that took me by surprise. I had a call with one of my long-term freelance clients, for whom I'm building a new website to promote their holiday cottage. This work was commissioned in May, but I'm only just getting round to finishing it in September. I've had a busy summer and my free time is quite limited living with Fran because I want to spend quality time with her. I had very few free weekends and I don't always have the time or energy in the evenings after work. I was expecting this call to be an opportunity to demonstrate the progress I've made and get the site ready to go live. I was quite shocked when my client, Chris Goodall, said he wanted to abandon the project. He's not happy with the site. He couldn't get the booking system to work. It seemed incomplete. I tried to make my case that we weren't that far off being finished, but his mind seemed made up. He's still going to pay me, but it seems such a waste to quit now. This seemed out of character. I wonder what else might be going on in his life to have provoked this. Or is he really just disappointed in me? Have I let him down? I do feel guilty for taking so long and the WordPress theme I chose is a bit botched together with a slightly crappy user interface and documentation, but I was starting to feel happy with what I'd done. I may try to give it another go by email in the next few days when I send him the invoice. I'd like the opportunity to do a face-to-face demo. Some of his feedback seemed irrational, like the fact that the menus were in the wrong order - such an easy thing to fix! It knocked my confidence a bit. Talking it through with Fran helped me vent. But I've managed to recover my pep today with a good day working from home on my real job.

A lotta stuff went by but the best one would be Disney world.it was so awesome to go to.magic kingdom was great but Epcot was fun as well as animal kingdom.but the best one was Disneys Hollywood studios.with its Star Wars rides and cool shows and how awesome it looks it's the best park.but all of my vacations were awesome,but this was the best

Mary graduated and is in college now. It affected me by losing my financial benefits and she's not around to help around house. So I am more stressed. She however is thriving! She has a good job. Didn't seem to get homesick. Very happy at school and on her own. I am very proud of her!

I'm guessing a lot of people will lament the election of the orange one. It's been hard. Hard for my heart. Hard for my soul. When I was younger I used to say that the US was on its last breath as a world power. That we would fall just like the Romans in influence and respect. I didn't think I'd actually live to see it happen. It's distressing and scary. And very sad.

This past year, my first born son was 1 month old at this time. I was a new mom, a new wife in a new home. All of these new life changes affected me significantly. I was feeling lots of different emotions. I loved my new baby and was soaking up every minute of our time together. I had time off and trusted my students to run our organization smoothly in my absence. That felt good to disconnect from that responsibility but had all these new types of stress; lack of sleep, breast feeding demands, trouble getting help and attention from my partner. Over time, we got into a rhythm. We developed a schedule, went on dates, documented our sons experiences and leaned on family for help. Today we are joyful and getting ready to find out the gender of our next baby!

Became more active in a professional group I affiliated with. It inspired me to begin to fully develop my business purpose in several ways. Really starting to ramp up.

My daughter and family have been sharing a house with us for the past several years. Their space needs changed sooner than they had expected and, rather than talking with us as they tried to solve this, the first we learned of it was when they announced they were moving out and getting a different house two years ahead of schedule. I felt blindsided by their actions and felt forced into making decisions about housing before other pieces were in place. I felt frustrated, cranky, and just plain not ready. As I turned to God for help, these ideas helped me: God loves and cares for all of us and his provision for one person/family is never at the expense of another. If it was right for them to move, then not only would we not be hurt by this, but God would be adjusting our situation so all of us would be blessed. God's plans are sometimes different from ours, but they are always the best way forward, so it behooved me to listen and follow where God was leading me. We considered selling the house, but asked another family member if they were interested in sharing the house. To our surprise, they were interested and have since moved in. Our daughter is nearby and the changes have been very harmonious. Our housing situation blesses us and our other family members. While the situation was initially stressful, working through it has strengthened my relationship with God.

An individual was "elected" and now living in the White House "acting" as President of the U.S. This affected me in a very negative way. It became very stressful, that it affected my physical health and spiritual well-being. I am very resentful, especially in light of the fact that he did not win the popular vote and this is not how elections work in other countries. I have reduced my news watching to weekdays only. But I am participating in marches, rallies, signing petitions, calling my Senators, congressman and representatives, and writing political poetry.

Last June I won a fifth avenue theater award for lighting design, which is basically like the tonys but for high schools in Washington. It was one of the most amazing and rewarding experiences of my life because it validated my aspirations to become a lighting designer. I am so grateful that events have lined up in just the right way for this to have happened; I could never have done it without the help of so many people, and a bit of luck. It has propelled me to work even harder now to become even better.

We were told that grandma's pacemaker won't last more than a year and we're not going to do anything to change it. Visits to the hospital would make her dementia and mobility worse than they already are. I feel relieved because I wouldn't want to live her life and I don't think she enjoys it either. I feel selfish for being relieved but really it's because I wonder what other people think. And then I realize it doesn't matter at all what they think. We are doing the right thing for her.

I just cannot believe the unjust treatment I have received from the Education Department this year. I have had a 30 year career, and been respected by colleagues and families throughout the early childhood sector. I have had to endure bullying and brickwalling by the management strata. People who understand neither children nor teaching. As a result I have been all but blacklisted as a "loose cannon" (read : someone who speaks up for and acts on their beliefs) and now have little choice but to resign. This has on one hand led to deep dark depression, even suicidal thoughts. On the other hand, enforced time off work (stress leave) has given me space to rediscover my art and re-evaluate my life perspective.

I have experienced workplace competition and sabotage that I didn't know was possible - I though these things only happened in the movies. While it has torn me apart, and made for a stressful year, it has inspired me to really take a look at what I'm doing and take the steps to move on to something different.

I went on March of the Living in April which is where groups of jewish high school seniors from around the world come together to Aushwitz concentration camp to commemorate all of the victims of the holocaust and learn about the travesties that occurred. During my time in Poland I felt sick to my stomach every day as I heard stories of the suffering that the holocaust caused. I was (and still am) confused as to how something as severe as genocide can exist in this world. I shed enough tears to last a lifetime and experienced the greatest sorrow of my life thus far. But I also gained a deeper sense of pride and appreciation for my heritage while forming bonds with people I will always remember.

I moved from my city were I was born. It was wonderful, I would never imagine that!

The birth of my friend's baby Jude. I was in awe of her, her power, her husband, his commitment and presence, and how loving and supportive humans are. I was surprised at how quickly I loved the baby. I felt like I knew what I wanted: a family, a partner (or partners) that supported me in that way. I knew that I want to know my power. I imagined J being there with me and it being our baby. I imagined how great the support from R would be too. I felt a little sad a scared that it might not be possible with being poly but then I also felt like it might be even more possible. Either way I was amazed and inspired and more sure than ever that I want to be a mother.

Something significant that happened to me this year was moving to Chicago's loop from Andersonville. It's changed a lot of how I live my life. I ride the train, changed my schedule. I don't drive. I'm exercising more. It's been good. I don't like the neighborhood, but I like what it makes accessible. I think it'll be a good thing for me and dan for this next year. I don't like that it takes me so long to walk to the train.

i was deceived by a realtor that the renovation budget necessary to bring a house up to standard was only $20-30K. I bought the house and find myself needing to borrow $120K in order to do all that is needed for this house to be functional. i'm grateful that all circumstances led me to be on this journey of resilience, community, guts, faith, creativity, and collaboration. i'm finding out what kind of person I am and what i can create with very little resources. i'm left with a wonder of what I can accomplish with experience, determination, and bigger budgets.

Switching jobs after a lot of hesitation. It has been mostly a negative experience but I am grateful that I took the leap. I have learned a lot about myself and happy that I have drawn more conclusions in life. Switching employers gave me the schedule that has allowed me to do much more outside of work and inspire me to different levels. I hope to continue this and work towards my happiness in life throughout this new year.

Mom and I went to the Salem Animal Shelter to look at dogs and to figure out the the of dog we were interested in. Walking by all the cages, there was so many adorable animals. Then we came across the cutest black puppy and I just knew he was the one. He was so friendly and energetic. Mom ended up filling out the paper work, she couldn't not get him, she knew he was the one too. I was very relieved because I have been wanting a puppy for an extremely long time. It made me really excited and happy to have an amazing new puppy.

I learnt so many hidden things from the shulchon oruch though I just found out about it. It showed me more about rosh hashanah feast. I am very grateful as well as relieved and very much inspired

Our granddaughter Lucy was born on April 17. She was healthy and beautiful. It is amazing to have another generation to follow us in our lives here on earth. and seeing my son and Megan respond to this new phase of life is also a gift. I am so grateful to have this experience and it brings such joy to both Bill and me.

I was made a permanent employee at my firm. I am very grateful that I was given this chance to return to full time employment so that I could support my family and learn something new at the same time.

The death of my father was certainly the most impactful thing that happened to me this year. My reaction? Grateful. My sisters and I had the opportunity to not only provide him with everything he needed including love and support, but gave him the perfect goodbye. This was an incredible gift, not just for him, but for us as well. I do not for one moment take for granted how fortunate we all were to share this experience and to be with him as he transitioned and passed over. I will always remember guiding him out by singing Shabbat songs and making havdallah while although it had left his body, his neshama hovered in the room.

This year I successfully graduated from over two years of work on DBT (Dialectal Behavior Therapy). I am proud of the effort and my self-allowance for change. What I learned changed my perspective, introduced me to new approaches, and allowed me to have options beyond self sabotage. Plus I've met some wonderful positive people who have become friends.

This past year I started a new job leading an organization and we moved, and our daughter started at a new school. So much change. I think the significance of the change was at a macro level we seemingly added a design hand into our life by creating a space and import around family. Rather than having our family life fit into our existing world, we selected a home, a job, a school based on the future we wish to see the present we wish to have.

I met Michael and we started dating! It was the best thing I ever did for myself. I'm so grateful for everything he does for me and for the relationship we had. It wasn't easy at first, but I followed my heart and fought for it.

I got divorced. It was crushing and all consuming, a process that lasted several months. It affected my daughters greatly and we are still trying to make sense of what happened. We sold our family home and I bought the 3 of us a different home that was smaller and more affordable. He moved out and continued a relationship with his much younger girlfriend. I am at a point where I am happier all the time for myself that it's almost over, but fear it will take ,ugh longer for my daughters to heal from what he and his girlfriend did to our family.

I have been very focused on bringing my credit up and getting my house in order (both literally and figuratively). Things that have been such a mess in so many ways for so long are starting to shine. That light at the end of the tunnel is not a train! I don't have the house yet. But I will get there, I know I will...more importantly, I know I CAN. its not just that something will happen but that I by my own actions can make a dent in the situation. So many of the negative issues were completely out of my control. Not my choices not my mistakes. Which made me feel like I was just along for the ride no matter what I did. I feel, maybe for the first time, like I am making progress and not just surviving. I am finally starting to believe that hard work really does pay off. I am 48. I thought this was supposed to happen in your 30s! Lol!

How to choose just one? But I think the selection makes this a more managable, finite task, so: We got our first car just about a month ago. This in and of itself was a significant event, and I am grateful for how smoothly it went. However, I have some thing even more to appreciate about it. Shortly after we got the car the drivers seatbelt buckle broke. Then, the drivers seat got stuck in place. BH, these were both fixed, but in between I still had to use the car! This was possible because the drivers seat belt fit into the passenger's side buckle and because the seat got stuck in place where I could still fit. Accident? Not only don't think it was, I don't FEEL it was. And that is a gift beyond measure. To feel G-d's care, in an everyday way.

I broke my elbow this year. It's not that serious of an injury but it broke me out of the routine I had been in, and subsequently caused me to reexamine the ways that I define myself. I've felt a range of emotions. Initially I was really sad and isolated, then I was inspired to look for new aspects of myself to focus on. I'm grateful in many ways but also will be relieved to be back to my full self.

The ending of my marriage 6 years ago. It has had a profound effect on me and life in many ways not least of which is accepting that at time when couples can now reconnect with each other and enjoy all the work they put into creating beautiful children and a life together, I find myself on my own. I am grateful that I made it through all the pain and sorrow to a happier and more grounded place in my life. I don't know that I will ever be relieved. I am relieved that the worst of that experience is over. If I allow myself to go there I can feel resentment towards my ex-husband. I am inspired to create the next phase of my life, my new normal.

In the past year I have meet the love of my life, Debbie Kaltman. I consider myself to be fortunate to have found an individual that challenges me to be my best at all times. I am grateful that she loves me for who I am today and not anything else. I am so lucky and deserving to get to wake up to her everyday.

I battled breast cancer this year. It rocked my entire world. I had to take time off of work and away from my family for treatment. It made me very grateful for everything I have in my life. I have great insurance, I did no have to pay a dime out of pocket, you don't think about insurance until you really need to use it. I got paid for every minute I missed from work, my co-workers donated time off. I am now inspired to live in the moment, chase my dreams, something could come along and take you off of this earth, I don't want to have retreats.

Reconnecting with spouse after long stretch of distance. Angry about lost time. Relieved about feeling 'in love' again. Grateful there is time to make up for loss. What a gift true partnership can be.

Something significant that has happened in the last year is getting my driver's license. I am now able to have much more freedom than I ever had before. Even though both of my parents work full time, I am now able to join my friends at any time. This is very helpful for multiple reasons, such as the opportunity to do whatever I want at any time, like joining more clubs or shopping for whatever I need. I don't need to rely on my parents anymore.

The Go Ruck Constellation. Staying up all night. Running around suburbia with a backpack and seven other adults dressed in muted tones. Starting a fire with flint and steel. Getting sprayed in the face with pepper spray. I'm relieved I can still have an adventure and do things I didn't think I could.

My dad's death seems to be the only thing that really mattered this past year. It influenced my response to everything and colored every day. I feel some relief in losing the worry for him, but I know I would have gladly carried that emotion over losing him. I do have some wonder if I would be as motivated right now if he was still around. I think a part of me is also grateful that I no longer have the safety net that he represented.

I finally took my first trip outside of the USA, and it was to the poorest areas of India for 10 days then to some of a richests parts of London and Paris right after. I normally think of the world in terms of the USA but after that trip the world all of a sudden seemed unmanageably big. When I think of "everyone" I really think of people with western views, and need to change that. I felt a bit of shame in the poor areas of india because I knew I would be leaving their environment soon for someting I considered better. I hope they did not think I was just looking at them judging them. I was also inspired by the resilience of people to be happy in so many different environments.

The most significant thing to happen in this past year was the horrifyingly disappointing presidential election. Instead of having the most qualified candidate in recent memory, and a woman as well, be elected, we are all saddled with the giant flaming turd, the Twit in Chief, Trump. I have been wearing black every day, except when I don't leave the house, since November 9. It is my personal protest. I sometimes get a little tired of it, but then I remember why I am doing it. I feel like we are all living in some dystopian work of fiction, and I keep waiting for the horrors that seem inevitable to begin. Will this asshole take us into another war? Will the earth be bombed into insignificance? How can I put on a reasonably hopeful face so as not to discourage my daughter or my students, or make them afraid? And how do I shut out all the voices of people who think this shell of a person is doing anything but endangering us all while enriching himself and the rest of the kakistocracy at our expense? GAH! I'll say I'm resentful. And angry. And frightened. I feel like I'm swimming in a thick soup of unreality most of the time.

I lost a lot of friends because of situation where a promise was broken. People were scared, and sadly decisions were made that have been hard to bear. I feel closer to those around me though, and I feel like it taught me to be grateful for friendship and more sensitive to how I am treating people and myself.

Between September and July, I experienced the departure of a troubled and extremely difficult employee. By the time the departure was final, I had moved through so many emotions, stages of grief and spent so much time, that I felt exhausted, used, cynical and resigned. Happening during the same period as the trump election and aftermath increased those feelings and left me with a sense of helplessness. I no longer believe I can change the world or have it all, all those things 'they' tell us so we'll study, consume and work hard. I know there is an immense and nasty system that I am powerless against. It is wrong, unjust, and all my railing against it changes nothing. So instead of going to bed with a bottle of whiskey (as in the weeks after the election) I have sought to understand what I have learned, and put it to good use, right in my small circle of influence. My purpose is clear and I can navigate the troubles of the times, and my own, with helpful skills.

On August 17th, 2016 Dad passed away. There are responsibilities I never knew I had that immediately were thrust upon me and I feel angry and resentful. I know that he was doing the best that he could but he wasn't aware of the effects of his decisions & actions. Mom is still in shock and is just starting to grieve after a year of running his business. I think about him every day and it pains me to think that I won't hear his voice again...that's the hardest part.

Converted to Judaism and joined the Jewish people! I'm happy to have the process over with and I go into this new year a new Jew!

This past year, I went to India for five weeks. I learned a lot about myself on this trip. I felt uncomfortable in a city, which had never happened to me. I was a part of a collective culture, which made me wish for independence. I worked 72 hour weeks, and I learned that I could handle it. I also learned that I did not want to work this way. I learned that I am resilient - traveling alone, but also going to an emergency room alone. In a country I didn't know. I learned that I don't like to be the center of attention, which happened often because of my blonde hair. I learned where and how and when I crave space. I learned patience. I learned about a new level of hospitality. I learned that six degrees of separation is real and that people are generous and kind and want to help. I am grateful for this experience. It opened my eyes. It showed me new ways. It helped me learn limitations.

I discovered that my husband of 9 years (been together for 16 years) was having an emotional affair/secret friendship with another woman. He said that it was not physical, but I have no reason to believe him. This was the final straw in a serious of infidelitous behavior. All previous incidents were him dabbling online, responding to ads or placing them, but never with an actual person. This final time he had a relationship with someone that he kept secret from me, and she knew our names, our kids names, etc. It felt so much more violating than anything he had done previously. It was quite possibly the most painful experience of my adult life. It hurt. I became severely depressed and had to go on medication so that I could just get out of bed every day. In the beginning, I was hurt, overwhelmed, angry, resentful, sad, you name it. I read several books, I got into therapy, and a support group. I found help. I began to rethink everything in my life. EVERYTHING. I opened myself up to the idea of new ways of being in relationships. I have questioned the idea of marriage and monogamy. I have looked and am continuing to look deeper into myself. I am still guarded and cautious, but I am so relieved that this happened to me and to us. It opened my eyes. I was in some pretty serious denial about the state of our marriage, and about how I had approached our relationship. I have learned or am learning about boundaries, self respect, self worth, what I want out of life, and what I deserve. I have learned that I cannot trust him, no matter what he says or does. I've learned that I am strong and capable, and that I can do this. I can have the life I want, even if that means he and I are no longer married. I can handle this. It has really propelled me to recover the parts of myself that I lost in this relationship.

Surgery, cancer, chemo! Ovarian, stage one. I was empowered and curious and grew a lot in spite of being 66 yo. Iam more grateful, more aware, have better at self-care, have a strengthened belief in the kindness of strangers and the power of spiritual practice, and I am living a qualitatively better life, now, in spite of having lived a very qualitatively great life before. I am grateful for the experience and would not trade it for having had a surgery with a benign tumor. I also would not wish the experience on anyone else. I am inspired to make my story available to others...it is filled with love, kindness, support, miracles, and deep spiritual experiences.

I had two very significant experiences this year. We had Zion. She is incredible. A true gift that has me worrying every minute of every day and I don't want to admit that but it's tough. I'm not necessarily worried we're going to lose her, though I do constantly check to be sure she's breathing. But I just worry like I worry about all my kids and Kim and other things not as significant. I send out my own little form of a prayer to whomever good energy might be out there to just please keep them safe. It's a mantra. The second thing is getting hired on FOtB as Art Director. It's a huge thing for me. It's a steady job that I'm discovering I'll be good at it. I'm still getting my feet wet, but it's all very natural for me. I have some learning to do about the way certain things are always done. I am not typical in any sense so my first instinct to do something is almost alway different from the "norm". But I learn quickly and I know when to ask questions & when to keep my mouth shut and observe. I haven't had a proper job in about 15 years. One that I had to go to regularly and have a phone and a desk and all that stuff. I like it. I like this one anyway. It's a respected position and the people are very nice. More importantly, it's opened a door to a lot more work down the road. As a scenic artist, I don't get a lot of hours. And most want to just pay me through invoicing. This job has the full benefits and a steady paycheck. Kim won't have to worry about working until she feels like it. The downside is I don't get to see them much now. We'll figure out the balance.

Major Major Event...moved out and decided to leave my husband. It was a long time coming and probably should have happened years ago, but I was scared, afraid, stubborn, ashamed. I am so grateful I made the decision. I feel I got my life back, I am seeing so much more of my friends, many I hadn't spent a lot of time with in the past 10 years. I feel inspired to meet new people, explore my new neighborhood, try new things, go new places. Still getting used to being back on my own after 12 years, but my new mindset is to say YES!!! to everything. If a friend asks me to do something (coffee, dinner, drinks, weekend away), if I don't have a conflict, I say yes, even when I'd rather be home on the couch vegging. Say Yes!

A few days ago we celebrated the birth of our second child, a daughter this time. We waited a long time and worked very hard to get and stay pregnant with her and we are so unbelievably blessed.

Coming up against the fear that I was too old and unfit to make the hike up the Enchantments. I actually had to do as much work with this critical part of myself as I had to do with my body and mind to improve my lung capacity for the altitude shift, and my leg stength for the long days of hiking and carrying a bag pack and preparing to sleep in a tent for a week. I am SOOOO grateful that my daughter Liza, who was living with us at the time, absolutely became my coach , the voice of OF COURSE YOU CAN DO THIS. She got me running a mile a day- which I now love, strength training, and pulling up my arms and legs so that the experience was not only doable but life affirming. I had forgotten how much I loved camping and backpacking 30 years ago. The depth of solitude, sheer beauty and variety of flora and fauna was magical. Best of all I got to swim 3 times a day in a crystal clear glacial fed lake, yes it was very cold, but oh so inviting after sleeping on the hard ground or hiking all day in the 90 degree heat. I laid on my back and took in the magnificence scenery, snowy peaks, boulder fields. wild flower meadows and the deep sound of silence. I am forever changed i how I view myself, 58 years young with the capacity to continue to grow and learn and stretch into new adventures.

My grandmother died this year. I'm still in the morning period-- shiva is over, but it's been about three weeks and I'm still saying kaddish. Although I rarely spoke to her, she was my last living grandparent, and at 96 she cast a long shadow over my family. I kind of expected her to live forever, and while I've felt mostly numb and relieved about it, since she was so old, I turn around sometimes and find this emptiness in my chest that I cant' identify.

- I started a new music project. - A soul dimension of my being, a musical intelligence, is waking up and beginning to consume me, take up more space, call for my loyalty and sponsorship. Ready to gift me..... - Very grateful - Relieved, a little yir'at Adonay, fearsome awe before what is waking up.

Working with my non-profit

I fought for and finally got a job reclassification at work. It wasn't the bump that I wanted, or deserve, but it's better than not getting one. I am pleased, but not grateful. Relieved that my checks will be larger, resentful that my coworker still plays games for hours while at work and makes 50% more than me. I am inspired to find a good position in a different department that will be classified at the level I should be at.

I woke up in the middle of the night on the 1st of january this year, and thought; 'this is going to be a wonderful year.' I was right: Our little nephew was born. Such a nice little fellow :). And we finally bought a beautiful house :). And last but not least: we are engaged. :) Happy, happy, happy, woohoo :D.

I quit my job. I really did it! Even though I was making more money than ever, and generally had low stress, I did it. The mishigas around the restructuring helped me pull the trigger, but I stayed focused on what I was going *toward* rather than what I was leaving behind. I am continually grateful for the opportunity, joyous in my day-to-day life, humbled by how difficult it is to write, and by how awesome inspiration is when it strikes, and terrified that I made the biggest mistake of my life and will end up living under a bridge. What if I never even finish the book? What if I do, and it doesn't sell a single copy? What if I can never get another journalism job because I've been away too long and I'm too old and the industry is too decimated? Then what? But mostly, it's just endless gratitude that I have the time and the money to pursue something I've always dreamed of. I'm trying not to squander it.

The sudden death of a distant cousin. I didn't even know how much it affected me but it impacted me so much, him dying at work, loading a truck in a foreign country. It could be me, living so far away from my family always... It made me grateful not to work in hard physical labour, resentful because my father had to, and inspired because it made me leave my job and go back to school.

I've learned about my core values. It was from reading an article about the American Revolution that said that that event gave the US its major values. I know most of what I believe was shaped by my 2012 emotional breakdown and my 2016 breakup. So I started thinking about what my core values were. I decided they were 1. Balance and moderation 2. Pragmatism: doing what makes sense 3. Doing what is right 4. Peace: both internal and external This was a huge step toward leaning about who I am as a person. It happened in April 2017.

Aunt Sandy passed away. Just when I thought we were passed all of that, that this year would be better, it wasn't. She passed from a heart attack on July 27, 2017, less than two years after her father, her mother, and her brother-in-law (my father).

I moved here 8 years ago and after taking time to recover from the move, acclimate, and help care for my aging mother-in-law, I got serious about finding my niche in this big city. I needed a place to volunteer where I felt my contribution made a difference, even if only in a small way. I am grateful, inspired and feel very blessed that two wonderful opportunities came my way and I was able to see them and jump in.

My book is being published in 2017. I feel more excited about it than I expected to, more proud, more interested in sharing the achievement and the product.

The Trump election. That specific November event changed the actions and choices I made for the rest of the year-- it is why I am at Planned Parenthood now. The loss was absolutely devastating. I went to bed before the results were fully counted and woke up in a haze, wishing I had dreamed the entire previous night instead of lived it. I remember sitting at work reporting out on IT Software changes in cloud environments and simultaneously reading the thank you email from Hillary and beginning to sob in front of my whole team. Because he became elected, I pushed hard to go to Planned Parenthood, and specifically to go to a PP that was not in California. I am so lucky and privileged to remain shielded from the havoc he has wreaked on the lives of specific members of the U.S. population (E.g., transgender military members, DACA children, vicitms of sexual assault) since his election.

The most significant experience I've had in the past year was my service trip to the Dominican Republic. Prior to the trip I was simply an average high school student who lived in a bubble. However, from the trip I've learned that there is much more then just my school, home, and work. In fact, there are numerous different places and cultures waiting to be embraced such as the Dominican Republic. I will forever be grateful for the trip because it not only brought me closer to God and the Dominican culture, but also brought me closer to the people who I went on the trip with, who are now my best friends (though I'd argue they're more like family). I feel it is important that everyone should challenge themselves to get out of their comfort zones and travel to a new place or embrace a new culture like I did. This is because trips such as the one I went on teach people more about humanity and help us understand, through experience, that there are many different types of people out there who live very different, and sometimes similar, lifestyles. The service trip inspired me to take the opportunity I have to join the Latino culture club at my school to further explore my love for the Dominican culture. That is why my school service trip to the Dominican Republic is the most significant experience I've had in the last year.

Four months ago, I fell in love--truly, madly, deeply. I am 56 years old and I had never felt anything like this before. I am grateful to know this woman and to finally know this feeling.

This year, I fucking landed on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. It's something I'm honestly still processing. It made me so grateful to be seen, especially now via the eyes of people in our community. Swipes had a ton of milestones from our board of directors becoming grown, the epic $7.5Mil legislation, our mission expanding to campus partnerships. Personally I started going to the gym a ton. Feeling my legs be strong is an incredible feeling. Also significant was spending feeling feelings with Hexter. Moving into wework/leaving the hub. Sharing babajoons story on stage. Going to the white house on RH last year!

I gave birth to my first child this year in March, a boy. No other event in my life has caused such a mixture of strong emotions - anticipation, excitement, worry, elation, joy, grief, guilt, despair, hopelessness, wonder, the list goes on... Soon after we came from hospital I said to my partner (his dad) it felt like we'd come home from hospital and entered some strange parallel universe. Everything is the same yet completely different. I adored and was obsessed with him from the moment he was born yet I'm amazed how that love has since matured and developed and no doubt will continue to do so. I could go on and on about this. It's been a roller coaster. It has challenged me so much - when he's crying and won't go to sleep and nothing I do seems to work, it's hard not to feel like a failure. Especially for a sleep-deprived perfectionist. But when he smiles or does something new it's the most amazing thing in the world. I've missed parts of my pre-baby life just terribly - freedom, 'me time', work, adult conversation, time with my partner, fitness/sport/exercise... while others have faded into oblivion and I realise how little they mattered (eg watching junky TV shows). And it's affected my relationships too - both strengthened and tested them to equal degrees. People I thought would be great supports didn't quite live up to expectation; whereas most others have stepped up to it in ways I wouldn't have imagined (his dad, my best friend, my mum, my stepmother...).

My Grandson was born, my first. It was awesome!!!

I've grown a lot in my career, but not as much as a person. I'm grateful and thankful and inspired to do what I do - I want to keep doing it and growth feels possible. I feel like I need to do more work to connect with the people in my life - to give more of my time to charity - to do work on my hobbies. I feel like my head is finally above water, I guess? I still worry constantly about losing my job. I am still fragile. I don't know if I could survive it even though I've survived it before. I just want to do better. I just want to stop fucking up and start growing. I'm going to move soon - I hope it becomes a turning point in my life, somehow, though these things rarely are. I hope to feel brighter and better and bigger. I hope to stop hiding.

I broke up with my best friends. It was terrible. Like as bad as losing someone you loved in a romantic way. I'm emotionally as raw as the night it happened. But I'm proud of myself. They live in a world where love is abuse. I am not going to live in that world. I'm excited for the new friendships I have now opened myself to. Loving friendships. I will always love my old friends, but I feel confident moving forward without them is the right thing to do.

One year ago on September 03,2016 I married my husband. It affected me by the way he has shown such a great deal of devotion to our family now... As he never did till than, at least not in the same way.. I'm extremely proud and greatful for the man he is today. I'm truly inspired as well as appreciative to all who shared and helping make me a better me through this journey into marriage with love a devotion. I have also begun to take care of me more and grow in the sense of I'm worth it. Bettering myself so I can help others and my family as I move forward in to the next phase of my life. I'm hopeful that I can stay on this path of optimism..

I was able to make significant progress on a long-term project involving landscaping my backyard. I had been stuck in the problem-solving of how to complete it and serendipitously got some information from a neighbor on how to get free materials delivered. I became willing to hire a couple of workers when I finally realized I would not be able to do the work myself. I'm extremely grateful. I feel much more peaceful. I'll feel confident that it will be completed before the end of this year l, whereas before, I felt demoralized by the weight of the unfinished project without a strategy on how to actually finish it. I'm looking forward to enjoying this freed-up energy to direct to other tasks waiting to be completed around my home and in my life in general. I'm very grateful for the progress and imminent completion of this project, and also for the lesson in reaching out for help to problem-solve when I'm stuck.

In the past year you have finished your first year teaching at an extremely challenging urban charter school, and begun working at a new school. Working at the school was one of the most difficult experiences that you ever had. You walked away frequently exhausted and disheartened by the fact that you were not set up for success. That being said, it allowed you to enjoy the switch of working at a different school. Since starting, I have been completely amazed by how happy I am. The students are a lot more calm, respectful and eager to learn. A refreshing experience after having such a difficult time.

I started my new job that I LOVE and it pays well. Everyone in our little family has insurance. I think this is the first time my husband has ever had insurance in his life. Dental. Vision. Medical. I can't explain the levels of gratitude for this opportunity. I am so relieved to be out of those situations I was in, professionally and financially. Thank you, God. Now I am inspired more than ever to fight for single-payer and basic income so our health and livelihood is not at the mercy of a corporation.

In the last year, I had my first panic attack (most unpleasant) and found a new relationship. I also started CBT and am trying very hard to come at life and specifically work from a more positive angle. I am mostly grateful but also tired at the prospect of working even harder for the potential benefit of being more productive and happier. I also feel a little trapped in a rut with work and life in general.

I started school again. It has been my career dream to get a doctorate in psychology for as long as I can remember, and I feel so blessed to have gotten into the program I wanted to as well as finish my first year. My family, friends, and partner have been so supportive of me in every aspect. Although I feel nervous about my progress in the program at times, or worried about getting all my work done, or out of balance I have been consistently able to rely on someone in my life to help me find the strength in myself to come back to center and continue on. The feeling of growth in my career and skill set and breaking through ceilings I felt earlier has been the best feeling - a huge sense of relief - that movement can occur. A second significant experience has been meeting my partner and being in a serious relationship. There was a point, not that long ago, where I thought that I would never feel romantic love again or even consider getting married again. Meeting him was revelatory. I have never felt more accepted, loved, and appreciated in my life. I know that sometimes my anxiety makes me worried about being in a relationship again, but everything he does assuages my fears and brings me back to a place of love. I feel so grateful to him for renewing this part of my heart, and I am so looking forward to living my life with him.

This year I was lucky enough to go to israel twice. Once was for 2 months. I knew that being in Israel for a long time was going to be very important and an experience that helped me to figure out what my next step is and it fully did that. Being there for such a long time made me realize that I need to be in Israel. That I need to be in the place that makes me so happy. It gave me the clarity I needed to say I will make Aliyah instead of maybe. I feel so inspired and relieved and happy and excited but I am also terrified. It is a huge decision and one I know I need to do, but it's still scary.

I was so depressed about being retired! But I have chosen and been chosen for amazing opportunities to do important things, and now I'm doing them and I'm happy!

I attended a HWL retreat, it was amazing and it changed my live (to say the least) I was able to forgive myself, forgive others and release shit that has been holding me back. I am so grateful that I don't even have words to express how I feel. It has inspired my to help others who struggle with their weight, it's not about diet, or buying into a program its about loving yourself

Learning that I had to have lap band removed. Initial panic set in. I was determined to get on top of this eating related weight problem. Been on M2 for 4 weeks and believe I'm in the groove FOREVER

I have alot of unresolved trauma from child hood so I have started counseling. It is only the beginning. I am grateful we have good insurance. I am nervous about how bad it will get before it gets better. I am not resentful.. I bet I will be later.. right now I am just scared. I constantly worry about what will the next session be like. I have high hopes for 7 months down the road.

Cubs won the World Series & I felt inspired & grateful.

Moving to a new apartment and starting a new job has brought all kinds of emotions, including relief, excitement, anxiety, and exhaustion. I have found that even during positive life transitions, I find myself feeling a little lost in the in between. The change is good but I cannot wait to be settled in finally.

Our decision to retire and move to Tucson, AZ. At first it was traumatic and terrifying; we both fought it. My head knew it was a thoughtful plan for our retirement and elderly years. My heart did not want to leave DC, a city whose beauty continues to thrill me and a community of friends and associations that are deeply rewarding. It is scary to consider a whole new way of life as well as new daily routines and a completely new roster of services and providers. And yet. I am shedding an old, comfortable skin and growing a new one. This growth is sometimes painful. If we do not continue to grow, we become stale and atrophied. I am at peace and slowly getting comfortable in my new skin.

I switched jobs. I'm both grateful (less stress) and feel unsettled (I have a lot of time on my hands but that does free up time for school).

I think the most significant experience was ending up in the hospital after a very difficult semester. I took on too much work, and then when I gave myself a break, I ended up very sick. And still, it seems hard for me to learn my limits. I want to take better care of myself, but it's hard to know the line where "self-care" and "self-improvement" become a form of self-flagellation. My father becoming ill - or rather, me realizing the extent of my father's illness this summer - was significant as well. Those two events happened right on top of one another, and it did call into question some of my priorities and feelings. I was surprised at the antipathy I felt towards my father's situation. He has been so uninvolved in our lives for so many years, I had accepted that he may just never be involved. Now, I know he never will be. He's not capable any more of involvement. I wish I could put him in a place where he is being cared for, but he claims that would make him miserable. I can't really do any more than shrug my shoulders and let this take place. I am grateful, as always, for the superior health care I received during my illness, and for the health of my boys. Nothing is more precious to me than that. So despite the challenges, I still am so grateful. Another year with my family - I can't ask for much more than that.

In my past year - my breakup. An intense and painful experience, no doubt, but certainly significant. It's made me think a lot about what I want for myself. Who I want to be with, what I want my life to look like, what partnership looks like, and who I want to be the father of my children. While dating through the past year hasn't been the most fun I've ever had, I'm realizing that I can and should be a lot more thoughtful and intentional about my life.

Dating a really nice guy for only three months, and then breaking up because fear stopped us both. Looking back, it wasn't fear that stopped me - maybe it did him, but mine was more because I didn't know what I was doing. My dad always told the story of Alice in Wonderland. She walked and walked, and when the cat asked, "Where are you going?" and she said, "Well I don't know", then the cat replied, "Then you just keep going!" I think I was in that mindset when I met him. I liked him and I liked that he was everything my previous ex was not. He cared, he focused on his family, he loved his church, he loved God and the prospect of doing mission for Him, and he served me in ways I never thought possible. But I was always worried that one day he might flip out and get angry. I don't know why that was such a scary thing - perhaps because he had that energy, but was really trying to press and turn away from it. So unhealthy. I am relieved that the event happened, and in the duration that it happened. I remembered crying while sitting in Central Park, a couple dozen tourists walking past, murmuring in their language - and I had nothing to wipe my tears. But I remember feeling so grateful that he backed away - because sooner or later I would have to break up with him anyway.

Finally getting my dog- it's wonderful to have someone to come home to, and a companion for walks and talks. He;s been with me for a little over eight months now and it feels like a lifetime. It's made me become more active by going on walks twice a day, and I've found places to visit with him which are lovely and I would never have gone to on my own. He is really my family now and I don't have to feel so dependant on my grown up children; I feel I have someone for myself. It's nice for my grandson too; he really seems to like him.

A beautiful young cousin died from a senseless overdose. It makes me feel confused, angry, sad, and helpless.

Gosh, I think it must be when I broke my wrist on May 11, 2017. It was a dumb accident and my own fault and it's because I was really tired from handing in my NYU MFA thesis and did not listen to my body. I'm not resentful, but the surgery forced me to slow down and I had to spend hours in PT instead of spending the summer on my bike. I am now more careful in everything I do because of the accident and surgery.

Christian was born this year, the day he came home Cam and I separated. It broke us both - but I'm grateful And relieved because now we are so much better and stronger. He is finally the husband I've been praying for. I couldn't ask for better. Also we finally got to cenegenics (bucket list!). And we have really been turning our health/bodies around.

Within the last month, I was ignored by a friend for three weeks. I had heard through our mutual friends that it was because I had spoken to a man at a party that she did not approve of. She had known this person in college and deemed him a 'liar'. My conversation with him was harmless, we got along very quickly. My relationship with this friend had been weighing on me for some time. She was a constant source of negativity and had a selfish, moody attitude. At twenty-four, I think I have the right to speak to whomever I wish without fearing a supposed friend would stop speaking with me. Therefore, her ignoring me was a welcomed change. I finally felt free to talk to anyone I wanted without her jealousy or attitude getting in the way. However, eventually it became time to talk. "We can all do hard things" is what I though approaching this conversation. I had every intention to accept her apology and tell her that I needed space from the relationship. However, she didn't apologize. She said my behavior showed I did not care about the relationship and she was offended that I ignored her. I apologized for making her feel that way, even though that is not how I saw the situation. I said I meant no offense, but would like to take a break from the friendship and recommit myself to being within a positive bubble. It was a horrible conversation. I feel guilty, sad, mean and a bunch of other emotions that I probably shouldn't feel. But I am not resentful, I am relieved. I know that I can do hard things. I know that I can make decisions about my personal wellness. I know that I am not responsible for someone else's happiness. I know that I can grow. I know that I can talk to whomever I want. I know that I can identify when I am being treated unfairly. I know I can confront people when their actions are interfering with the person I want to be. I know that not everyone has to like me for me to feel full. I feel happier than I have in a long time, and it all came out of a poor situation.

Probably the most significant experience that happened to me in the past year was going to college. Currently I am a freshman. However it is the things that led up to me going to the college I currently go to that has really made me feel a lot of guilt, sadness, and being upset. During application season, I was really unfocused and depressed. I got into many great colleges but at the same time I had no idea what to do so I put down engineering. I also took physics for the first time that year and I absolutely hated it and could not even imagine having to deal with physics for another semester. So I switched to teaching, but it was too late to apply to other schools so I was left with the schools I already applied to on my list. They were not schools I really liked. And surprisingly I chose the school I always hated. I'm here now and its not bad. But it is all the decisions I never took that in the end is fucking me over. I never applied early so I didn't have a chance at a full scholarship; I didn't apply for scholarships for dorming; I didn't show interest at first so a lot of things came to me late. And its the money that is freaking me out. Because its not even a great well known school. I know I am being unfair with my feelings but I keep looking back thinking "what if." And hopefully everything gets resolved. And I will finally be happy.

I would be lying if I picked anything other than the Presidential election. It's had a profound impact on my work in social justice of course but it's also re-ignited my feminism and my passion for speaking out about it. It's also deeply impacted my daughter and my mother -- for different reasons and in different ways but all of them full of emotion. It's exhausting me. I am resentful of those who voted for Trump in a deeply personal way. Not only did it force me into new priorities and protecting rights I thought already won; it's posing a deep threat to health care while my son continues to battle cancer and the fear this sparks is chilling in me.

I experienced having an online mentor to help me learn to promote and sell movement online. I have never had this kind of help for any new projects before and it has helped me reach out for help in other areas of my life. I am so grateful for the help and as a result so inspired to do more. I find myself trying and succeeding at more and more activities.

Last year, i met my best friends. When i moved into my apartment by myself, i was reluctant and nervous about my future roommates. my mom kept telling me not to get my hopes up because they seemed nice and normal over text. the day i moved in, noone was home because they were at band and rush. after my mom left, i sat in my room extremely nervous to really meet them, but after reading the note they left on the counter i was excited. when they all arrived home, they immediately invited me to go get ice cream with them. in the two hours we spent together that night, i knew i found some of my best friends. these three girls who already knew each other and were friends were excited to be my friend after one night. i am so lucky and grateful to have these ladies in my life, and i couldnt ask for better roommates and friends.

My grandmother passed away in December, in a very sudden way. Not only did it really take me aback, but it was really hard on my whole family, and especially my father. He's someone that I've never seen shaken up or rattled in any way, and it was scary to see how affected he was, and really made me think about how I would react when I lose him. It's made me feel a lot deeper level of gratitude for my family, and it's made me think about what I want my legacy to be, and how I want to be remembered.

I dropped my story about being afraid to get in front of people. Now I am finding myself in teaching yoga. The whole year has been a quest to find my voice. It feels really good. I also had my horrible job eliminated. I wasn't surprised and it lead me to my awesome new job I worked through the anger and consciously let go of any fear and welcomed the experience. Sometimes you get the push you need.

I witnessed the total eclipse on August 21 in North Carolina, in the company of an old friend. Its effect on me was to remind me (yet again) of the importance of making time to experience amazing things, preferably with other people. One of my goals for the coming year is to do more of that, and less worrying about obligations and responsibilities and "should-dos."

Getting accepted to SJSU and to CSUS. It showed me that my hard work had paid off. I was relieved but sad because I didn't like having to pick between the two schools.

I retired (for the fourth and final time) on July 1st this year. I am very grateful, very glad, and very surprised that I do not miss 90% of the experience of work. I loved being a school principal, but I didn't love the politics. I just need to find a way to keep the other 10% - contact with students and teachers - in a less intense way as I move forward. I am inspired to now use my time productively, to the benefit of tikkun olam. Volunteering at Temple and working at a local food pantry are the first to ways I'll use my free time well. Soon I'll start to mentor 2-3 students at our local high school. Who knows what will be next...I don't know, but I'm excited to find out!

There have been many, so I'll begin with one that is recent. Tomorrow I will have 60 days of sobriety in AA and this time I am serious about remaining sober for the rest of my life and staying within the AA framework and program for the rest of my life. I am relieved at this point and inspired and hopeful.

A significant experience that happened to me this past year was getting a job working for Apple through their College Care Program. I'm so grateful to have the opportunity to work for such an amazing company, and excited for the opportunities that could surface from it after I graduate. I have been working in the food industry since I've been 16 years old and I've been waiting to get a job in the career field I'm interested in. I applied a year ago for this position and I totally forgot that I even applied for this job. It seems that everything happens when its supposed to!

This year I started a new job that I believe is in line with my passions and was the right career move for me. It was also personally enriching. The transition has allowed me to feel challenged, scared, hopeful, introspective, and excited to learn and grow. I feel immensely grateful because I keep seeing new sides of myself and others. I continue to be challenged personally and professionally by my new team. I feel vulnerable and that is something that I really need.

Breaking my collarbone in half while skiing put things in perspective big-time. Be grateful that I only broke a collarbone and not anything else far more serious/danger. Be grateful for every day of good health. Be grateful for access to medical care that I can afford. Be grateful for people in my life who love me and take care of me. Gratitude, deep and profound humility for the blessings I have--yes, definitely left quite an "impact."

I decided to make my 70 year My Year of Sobriety. I gave up drinking & smoking herb. It was the first time I'd been sober since being pregnant w/ my son who's now 35. It has simplified my life somewhat. I have such a difficult time making decisions, or rather sticking to them. It was actually a relief to have that pre-decided. In the past, I found myself having to decide whether or not to do a hit every time I walked into the room where the weed was. I've never been much of a drinker, so that part was easy. I think i'm grateful for being led to do this. I was never resentful the entire year (11.5 months). Inspired? I'm not sure. well, I was inspired therefore to tackle the BIG addiction: FOOD. I am dealing with that thru WW. I will however get high on my birthday :) to celebrate the year of sobriety. haha

I sat for the California Bar Exam in July. Preparing for the test took nine grueling weeks, and the exam was two very long days. My overwhelming feeling about it now is that of relief. Although I won't find out until November whether I've passed the test and am officially a lawyer, the worst-case scenario is that I fail, and retake the exam in February. Before taking the exam, the idea of retaking it caused me much anxiety. But now I know what the exam is like, what the prep is like. It won't be great if I fail, but it won't be earth-shattering either. I know that I am capable of picking myself up and going through the process again.

I moved across the country about 2 months ago. I am mostly excited, but also nervous. I am grateful for the experience to try new things and meet new people and relieved it's going so well so far and already beginning to feel like home.

I started graduate school. I am grateful that God has given me this inner drive that once I have a dream and my sight is set on something, I don't give up, no matter how impossible some people (and they have) tell me it is. The next statement kinda contradicts the first one: I am still resentful about the fact that I let someone who was supposed to be a mentor to get into my head and made me believe that I couldn't get into a school that I really wanted to get in; now that I look back on it, I know that I would have gotten in and now I am even more determined to apply into the school that I wanna get in for my PhD. I am relieved that I finally got to distance myself from my roommates. It is lonely and sad sometimes given how far I am from home and how difficult to it is to make friends in this part of the world; however, I am glad that I get to have peace of mind and not to constantly have to worry about being stabbed in the back and dealing with two-faced people.

The death of my husband and best friend of more than 35 years in December left me shattered, saddened, and untethered to plans for the future. In spite of all the sage advice to not do anything in a hurry, the reality was that I needed to make a very quick series of life changing decisions. With a lot of prayer, some good advice and the belief that he and God watched over me I have managed to move forward.

I'm having a lot of trouble with this. What counts as significant? Significant to whom? Well, this is kind of silly, but here's where it started: I spent $60 on a purse. Before this January, I had never spent more than $20 on a purse. I never even LOOKED at anything more than $20. If I found something I liked, I would buy it in a cheaper color - purses, hats, skirts, shoes... god, everything. But in January I saw a purse I liked, and after realizing I wasn't going to be able to find a cheap knock-off, I bought the real thing. So, technically I have been able to afford to do this for a few years now, but I always had that demon/angel Miser on my shoulder. "Sure, you like the Fuchsia, but the Periwinkle is $3 cheaper!!" I bought crap I didn't love. And I treated it like anything I don't love... and I'm not going to get into details about that, but I don't even treat the things I DO love well. Last summer I lost the periwinkle hat in Chicago. This month, I bought the Fuchsia. I didn't agonize over a few bucks, I bought the one I liked. And I wear it every day! I'm ... grateful, I feel empowered, and hopeful for the future.

I have had a few. One is the realization via a conflict and being asked to ignore an illegality in my workplace that my job is suckong the life out of me....all i do is work and sleep. I have lost all perspective that my job is not me. I haave ben asked to compromose my moral code for the panic of a few at the top of the orginization. I am resentful. Angry. Frustrated. But i am also grateful that the true colors of some people have come out publicly. Because now I am well aware that I am not the isssue. Their fear and desperation are.

I took a 5-session Nonviolent Communications Workshop that profoundly effected and increased my thoughtfulness about how I deal with and respond to situations and people I find challenging. While getting the NVC language is still a struggle for me, the core ideas themselves have already significantly influenced how I show up and how I respond to wonderful and difficult moments, relationships, etc.

I studied abroad in a European this past year. While I enjoyed traveling to other parts of Europe, I was very unhappy during my study abroad experience and feel like I wasted one of the precious few semesters I have at my home university. I'm not sure exactly why I didn't like it, I think it was a lot of little things, but I'd take it back if I could.

My mother died on September 7. I am sad and relieved and trying to make sense of my conflicted feelings. I am hopeful that with time there will be some clarity.

I feel like there have been so many significant events in the world this past year. For one, Donald Trump's election has created a snowball effect for racism and hatred in this country. But personally, Jack and I lost our little girl earlier this year in the first trimester. It was a very depressing experience and I think I have come full circle with my acceptance and grief. I was completely distraught but have finally come out the other side. I'm actually going to stop therapy which is great! I have done a lot of great work and think I am in a good place. I'm trying to focus on being grateful for what I have rather than focusing on what I don't.

Started a new relationship with Andy. I am very happy! I've been learning and growing and having so much fun. It's fun to fall in love and take new adventures and intimately get to know another human, as well as another place.

In January, my beloved dog of 14 years passed away in his sleep. He had been ill, so it was not completely unexpected. However, I had never heard of a dog passing in their sleep. Obviously, I was sad because he had always been a joyful presence in our family. I also felt relief and gratitude. I felt grateful that he passed peacefully. His last day was still a happy day for him and when he went to bed, we told him we loved him. I know that it would have been difficult to make the decision to euthanize him and I was grateful that he went on his own. I also felt a sense of relief because his we knew the end was near and it was causing a lot of anxiety for Jadon. It was really difficult for Jadon, but it's a relief to know that he survived the loss.

My dad passed. He was young (62) and it was brutal. He was a healthful man. Just like that, a diagnosis of cancer out of the blue. Nearly 2 years later, we watched him wither away in agony and take his last breath. I am heartbroken, sad, angry. I was able to be with him quite a bit before he died. I said the things you want to say yo your dad when he is going to pass on. For that I am thankful. But I do have regret. We have never in my adult life lived near one another. He and I separated by many states, each raised a family over the last 20 years and neither of us made the other a priority. We saw each other infrequently. We talked a lot on the phone but never made visiting and getting family together important. I am regretful of this. And now more than ever, I realize that I should have made it a priority.

I've recently had a serious illness and I hate that my body won't let me do things I want to do. Disability has not been entirely a curse -- I think I'm a more kind and thoughtful person because of it -- but right now I just want to not be in pain.

2 significant experiences: 1) For the first time in my career, my position at work was eliminated and I chose to leave the company. I had not been happy for s few years, but hung on because it was paying the bills and I had my executive status. Three months later and I am grateful as it gave me the chance to spend quality together me with my boys who will all soon be out of the nest. It is teaching me to think outside the box about the possibilities for the future. And trying not to worry about money. 2) My oldest son left for college and it's been a huge emotional transition. With the other two (twins) now on their senior year, I will soon have an empty nest and it is very bittersweet. I am grateful to have raised three wonderful (sometimes) boys to be independent men, but it is an emotional time for me.

My husband decided to change careers. This is a significant experience for me, because it has serious implications for my life. He has been in the military for 20+ years, and is in leadership, which is very demanding on him, and also on me and the kids. This career change has been 90% positive, and I expect it will be even more so in coming years. I'm grateful, but also a little worried about what the lifestyle change will mean for us (the new career has challenges of its own). Our goal is more family time and more work-life balance in general, and I'm very hopeful that this decision will lead us in that direction in coming years. I'm relieved to know that I can drop my duties that are associated with his military job in a few short months, as it's very challenging to handle those responsibilities in addition to a full-time job of my own, and being solely responsible for most aspects of our family life, since my husband is away so much. We look forward to the day when he does not have the weight of the world on his shoulders 24/7. We look forward to him being a part of our everyday lives (the kids and I), which will be a new experience for us.

I am beside myself that the ultimate con man and incompetent fool was elected president. He is doing untold damage to our country and the image of our country. The hate and bigotry he has unleashed from the Pandora's Box of America's latent fascists is a horror show for anyone who is not a white "Christian". As a New Yorker who has known him since 1980, I KNOW what a pig he is. He is a serial cheater who has not been faithful to a wife, business partner or kept his word with those he contracts with. New Yorkers tried to send the country a message in the Republican Primaries by voting for the universally hated Ted Cruz instead of Twitler. I am so afraid that he is going to start WWIII with North Korea and we who live in California are going to pay for it!!!! I can't believe the CIA hasn't knocked him off already. God knows they have murdered leaders in other countries forever.

I have a good and a bad significant event... First, our wedding in December. What an incredibly joyous occasion. It convinced me - long a skeptic - of the value of rituals like this, and the ability of people to adapt them, and the fact that, when changed, they DO mean differently in the world. Particularly meaingful to me was the fact that it was intimate - we had only our immediate families and closest friends. So it felt like a little enclave of safety, a testament of community and bonds and a really material enactment of who is there. Of love. It was powerful to gather love into the room, and instantiate it in faces, who were making a commitment to us and their relationships with us, just as we were making a commitment to try on life together. On the opposite side, I was shaken to the core by L's abandonment of her children this year - however brief and however much a tantrum - and not a real abandonment - it actually was. I have really struggled with my anger and sense of injustice in the way that L treats my spouse and her own daughter. I have really struggled with the feeling that I have been drawn into something very, very bad...ethically compromising.

I was involuntarily transitioned from my job. It wasn't one that I liked, but it was one I needed, I was learning from, and I was proud to have. I felt disappointed, frustrated, embassased, relieved, and a little hopeful. I also felt complacency creeping up as O job searched.

My divorce was final after 6+ years and I was finally able to marry my love. The wait was worth it - I married my best friend and my partner. I am grateful for the ways we got to know each other and ways worked through the frustrations together as to why we had to wait to wed. I am relieved and I am grateful. Also, Trump was elected President - immensely significant and harrowing. I am grateful for the vocal and active resistance to this Administrations policies and actions. Because of the actions of so many I remain hopeful for the future of the country that my child will inherit.

Iniciar una relación en la cual probé mis limites como mujer, como novia y como persona. Logré ser clara en cómo me sentía y pese a las emociones logré mantener la perspectiva de mi vida.

The birth of my grandson and my daughter transforming info being a mother. It made me very happy and I feel grateful for being able to love and cherish this little boy. We get along so well and have so much fun.

Being separated from the Navy has given me back my freedom and I hope I make the most of it.

Not one but two events have colored every day of the past year. One, the election of a man as President of the United States, has proved to be worse than even I expected, and I am daily hoping, praying and working toward the goal of our country standing up to him and his cronies to say, "NO! This is not who we are!" I hope our moral compass is not lost or irreparably damaged. The other event was a long hoped for connection with a person I still haven't met. The power of words drew me to him and the power of words caused him to call... keep calling... texting... writing... Yet after making tentative plans several times, we have not yet had a "four-eyes" meeting. I am unspeakably grateful for his life and his friendship, but I have gone through all the emotions regarding the conflicts in his life that have held us apart. I am hoping that, no matter what transpires between us in future, we will always be friends. He is a man of quality. May 5778 hold beauty and wonder and deep satisfaction for our lives.

Taking level 1 of my Board Exams for medical school was a huge challenge. Half a year of intensive preparation meant putting many hobbies and habits on hold. Although I did very well the process was grueling. After completing it at the end of May I have slowly come back into being myself. And it had been a fascinating experience beginning Krav Maga again and treating patients on my family medicine rotation. From annihilating my personal life I got to rebuild my values including new and old elements. I am relieved that it's over, grateful that I am done with the test. Grateful to have so many opportunities ahead of me, and looking for inspiration in hidden places.

Being appointed to the Human Rights council in my county. It has connected me to community and given me a way to contribute. I am grateful and proud.

Met a girl. Fell in love with her and we've slept together. Lots of times. She was... difficult. I never had the courage to talk to her about that. It ended bad. I feel grateful for those days. Resentful for how it finished.

Took 30% salary reduction. Some resentment but still love job and doing R&D for retirement by end of 2018. Or 2019 or 2020, clearly still undecided. While still long work I do have some resentment as feeling less valued by firm. Clients/customers still are grateful.

My most significant experience in the past year was getting married. I don't know how many brides have said their wedding was the best day of their lives, but I don't say that. In fact, whenever I think back to my wedding day, I immediately try to block it out. Which is silly, because it truly was an amazing day. And I married the greatest man on this planet, which I will forever be grateful for. But I am so hard on myself, and so internally negative... I've realized very recently this is something I need to work on. I think it stems back to my belief that people don't want to hear how perfect your life. I am pretty blessed, and from the outside I would say other people think my life looks close to perfect. It truly isn't far from it. But, I care SO much about not boosting, I always tend to look for something that went wrong or anything negative to talk about instead of what I think sounds like bragging. Cause that's irritating. Up until now, talking about my wedding hasn't been any different. But I need to fix that. I'm making the commitment right here, I WILL be more positive moving forward. It's not like I'm lying! I'm just shifting my focus, and putting my mental wellness first. On that note, here's a list of the reasons why my wedding day was the best. day. ever: *Michael is my husband. There was zero question about cold feet on either side. He's the best thing to ever happen to me *Our bridal parties and families were so, so supportive. Every step of the way, we had people willing to help with ANYTHING *Nothing major went wrong. To a normal guest, they wouldn't have suspected anything went wrong at all *Even with the rain, our ceremony was beautiful. We were still partially outside, but the space made it intimate and romantic. We had someone we love and who loves us as our officiant and we worked together to create a great script. I am still obsessed with the readings done by Michael's aunt and my stepmom *Dinner was incredible. We received SO many compliments. Also, the cake didn't stand a chance of not getting crushed *Our dance floor was packed. The whole night. Some people said they've never seen that many people dancing at a wedding before *My dress was amazing. It fit like a glove and there isn't another one exactly like it in the world. I worked hard leading up to the wedding and my body looked fabulous. My mom was so incredibly sweet to pay for it, too *All of our vendors were on time, did their jobs, and were easy and sweet to work with. Well, all but one :) *We have a tear jerker video and over 1,000 pictures that document the day *We went on a bomb honeymoon that truly WAS perfect in every way Damn. I am lucky.

Describe a significant experience that has happened in the past year. How did it affect you? Are you grateful? Relieved? Resentful? Inspired? I moved to New York in mid-November 2016 just after the high holidays. It was nerve racking to leave my comfortable apartment, friends, belongings, and lifestyle in San Francisco for the total unknown. Luckily Claudia had agreed to move with me and I had people like Shayna, Sadia and Erik in NYC that I knew would open up my social circle. Yet introducing myself to a new office culture and people, including a man who isn’t worth mentioning, that I was terrified of seeing regularly at work, was intimidating. But I did it anyway. I found an apartment, a new transportation routine (from walking to taking the subway to now citi biking), and even a boyfriend within 3 months. It was a relief to know that I could change locations and yet keep my core. But before I moved to New York I had the most earth shaking 10 days at a silent meditation retreat. Just under a year ago, I left my comfortable existence in San Francisco for New York City. The move was bold for me as I had never lived outside of California. Was it the bagels, the bright lights or the prospect of experiencing seasons for the first time in my life that drew me across the country like an activated magnet? As I prepared for the move I adopted Marie Kondo’s method of letting go of everything that did not give me joy. Clothing, furniture, art and literature were donated or sold. I kept only 2 suitcases, a blanket and a meditation pillow. I moved out of my apartment, observed the Jewish High Holidays and on Yom Kippur after 10 Days of Awe, I piled my belongings into a stranger’s car heading to a silent meditation retreat in Northern California without much idea of what could lay ahead. At the meditation retreat I took a vow to not make physical, verbal or eye contact with anyone for the following 10 days. Then I locked away all technology and reading/writing implements, heading to the meditation hall for my first uplifting 2-hour meditation session. It only took me 15 minutes to discover that my meditation practice was weak. I had meditated previously but it was always guided an insightful instructor telling me what to think about. But the meditation at the retreat did not have an extrinsic flow, only the occasional Hindi chant. The first night I sat on the cold linoleum floor with an aching back and legs wondering about the passage of time. I reassured myself that 10 days would fly by. Each day we would meditate for 12-14 hours and in that time, I would agonize over the physical pain, the depth of my breaths, how my family and friends may be doing without me, why I just gave up all my physical belongings followed by my voice…voluntarily. I wondered if I was masochistic and why I had to make everything so complicated and difficult. There were a lot of silent tears until I realized that my thoughts were the source of the complications, the difficulties. Eventually there were moments of clarity when I would watch a lady bug glide across a wooden wall with ease and effortlessly smile. This vibrant red bug with white spots and delicate legs was better than any cartoon I had seen. It was as unpredictable and beautiful as I decided in that moment. I looked around and realized that it was within my own control to find beauty or conversely, resentment in everything. I stopped exerting energy on what had previously irked me, the drought-battered browning grass, the redundant morning oatmeal, and even my roommate that would never shut the communal door. Just like the lady bug, there they were and there I was. The following days were not joyous, but they were peaceful and unique. After 10 days of silence, I stepped back into reality. I received my phone that had notifications which made my eyes twitch. I called my family and the sound of their voice over the phone made my eyes moisten. The mundane was now astonishing: a cup of coffee made my heart beat out of my chest, making someone else laugh restored my sense of self, and having more than 1 meal a day was a luxury. I was glowing and I was ready to bring my new humbled perspective into my work and life. I traveled to Germany for work and then went directly to NYC. My first task in New York was to find an apartment within budget. I hustled countless brokers and was exhausted by the scheming. Donald Trump was elected President. I drank too much and hugged a stranger who looked like they could use it. I laughed with my sister and for a minute that was enough. I was also back at work and the days went by quickly. There were many emails, conference calls and voices to listen to. It was noisy. I purchased Bose headphones to literally block out the noise. I joined Calm for on-the-fly virtual meditations. But I was still struck by the fact that there was a lot of content being generated and not much thought behind “why” we do what we do. When I moved from San Francisco to New York I naively thought that my world would transform. But there I was, day in and day out doing much the same work and despite the awakening I had at the silent meditation retreat, I still got swept away by small disturbances and often felt numb at the end of a long day. A co-worker of mine similarly longed to bring a spark back into her life and work. We created the Purpose Tribe to connect people and organizations to their inner fire by helping them define their "why." Our goal is to incorporate questions like “What are you trying to accomplish?” and “Why does it matter to you?” into the fabric of everyday life at work. We are committed to breaking through monotony to help others find passion and purpose in the work that they do. Ultimately, it’s all about momentum and finding your tribe. Moving into this next year/10 Days of Awe I want to remind myself to keep moving. To never stay stuck somewhere I don’t belong. To love big and loudy. To put myself out there. To be good to my family and friends. To not go numb and instead be proud of my contributions to the world everyday, no matter how big or small. To never lose my spark.

I started college. All of my friends moved away and I'm alone at SWOSU. It's interesting, but I kind of hate it. I've been here for a month and I have no friends. For some reason I thought it would be different. I'm slowly getting more and more homework and I just stress cleaned my dorm to procrastinate on my work. I wish I would've gone to a school with one of my friends. I miss them.

Falling in love - I met someone who is on my page. I am grateful to have someone so loving and caring. There have been challenges but the good has always outweighed the bad.

I received a lovely framed "heart" rock in a small basket from my daughter and grandchildren. I am grateful to the max.

Fell very hard off my bike, dislocated my shoukder, and tore my rotator cuff. Took me 11 months to have a nearly complete recovery. Grateful to be better, grateful to have had a very good surgeon and an awesome physical therapist. As hard as this was, I did get better. And now I think about my own patients, and how much harder it must be to have something that does not get better.

The idiocy of our country electing Trump! I can't even understand. This has made some people I know show their true colors. I no longer have patience for political discussion with those who voted for him. I'm resentful, I'm angry, I'm disappointed and I'm disillusioned. I thought we (as a nation, as a people) had evolved, but this election brings home to me that we haven't. All the bigotry and racism I thought we'd moved past and it's so clear that we haven't.

I met the woman who would become my wife. It changed the course of my life in that I was finally able to start to pursue the life I always wanted with her support, and also gave me the opportunity to love someone unconditionally in a way I have always dreamed of. I feel so enormously happy and grateful for her presence in my life.

Unfortunately, my answer will probably be similar to many others doing 10Q this year, in that last year's significant experience was Donald Trump being elected president. My immediate reaction was shock, outrage, and deep dismay. I'd worked hard for Hilary Clinton and was led to believe she'd win. Today I am angry and discouraged in addition to the feelings above. I have given up reading anything political on FaceBook or Twitter because I know I can't trust it, and am skeptical even of mainstream media. I am horrified at the increasing prominence of neo-Nazis and the alt-right. Still, I refuse to give up. I have marched for women and Planned Parenthood, and against climate change. I regularly contact my senators in Arizona when important votes are coming up, especially regarding health care.

I went to my 50th high school reunion. I was left with such a good feeling! Not only do most people get nicer with each 10 years, there was a shared closeness due to awareness of our mutual experiences of those long-ago times - our roots. I think we were all very aware of the passing of time, & how lucky we were to still be here!

My youngest son was married this year and I think it has had as significant an effect on me as it has had on him. He married his high school girlfriend and from what I can tell she loves him maybe as much as I do, if that's possible. I miss believing that I was the most important woman in his life. He'll be a great husband and father, I know that, but I will forever miss my son.

My husband's relapse on drugs and alcohol has caused a lot of pain and problems for our family over the last year. A year ago, we were separated and today we are working on our marriage in therapy, healing the challenges in our family, and working together to share the responsibilities in our life. His relapse has allowed me to grow and learn more about myself through a deeper connection to my higher power and the 12 step support group I'm involved in. I am very grateful for what I have today and for what I've been through that has gotten me to this place.

My mom died. It was world shattering. My heart was ripped from my chest. But I made it through. I supported my family and helped guide them through the deep pits of despair and anguish. I'm stronger now. I am more confident in my personal aspirations to be better. I'm in the process of rebuilding my life slowly, but I've got the memory of my incredible mom to help me when I get stuck.

A significant experience was our renewal of vows as we were finally able to get legally married as two women. Our 24 year old daughter sang and our 21 year old son spoke eloquently about how our relationship inspired him.

I moved to a new country. Germany. I am born and raised in Africa and studied in the USA. One could argue that it was inevitable given my travel bug. However, I could never have predicted that I would marry a man I knew as a great friend, and that we could overcome the bureaucracy and only spend 16 weeks apart before we were reunited. I feel lucky and I feel challenged to do more now that I am working remotely.

In May I was diagnosed with sleep apnea with a suggestion that my weight gain over the last 4-5 years may be the driver for that issue. I bought the CPAP machine but told myself that now was the time to really take my weight loss seriously. I have almost entirely cut meat out of my diet, I drink rarely, I count calories and as of mid August I have started exercising again. As of this writing I have lost about 14 lbs and I am starting to see the difference in my physical appearance. I still don't feel totally great day to day but I am still working on balancing my CICO. Generally though this has made me feel really empowered as it feels like I am taking greater control over my life on a day to day level.

Helped 100's of sick children on a medical mission in Paraguay.

After a break up, I experienced an awakening of grief from following the rabbit trail of why I did not trust the person I was in relationship with. It was great to uncover and to begin to start chiseling away at the pain. It was scary and frustrating to grief my father situation but very refreshing and exciting to be able to finally grow through it.

I got married! to the person I wrote about at some length in last year's 10Q essay, over there, to the right! Whenever I stop and reflect, I marvel, and smile, and think of Sarah, and think of how lucky I am, how lucky we both are. In so many ways this was a challenging year. I have many regrets about how I've acted, how I've kept in contact -- or failed to keep in contact -- with close friends. I can get to feeling very bleak about prospects for the country where I once felt so much at home but now feel like a conditional resident of ... to say nothing about prospects for the human species, for Earth's climate... But marrying Sarah. What a miraculous development, what a good choice. We are on each other's team. We love each other and will care for each other. We have hundreds of little problems and difficulties but the very biggest stuff is just as it should be. I have no doubts about Sarah as my partner and life companion. What a relief, what an affirmation of life and love this all has been. What a developmental leap, too; one I didn't think myself capable of for much of my life. What love and what security Sarah & I have found in each other, during cruel, scary and unstable times. Amen selah!

I lost my sister this year. I hate the euphemistic word, lost. It's not like she disappeared, although she did. She died. At 34. I was in Brazil at the time and I had to travel home. I'd save time talking about how it hasn't affected my life. But I won't. I still see my parents every day. I've changed jobs. Some of my relationships have solidified, and some have drifted away. My understanding of grief is now deeply personal. I miss her every day. And I live with a whole memory of her; Messy and implacable, generous and beloved. Whole and perfect, and wholly imperfect. Holy.

I persisted through a toxic work environment with bullying, harassment, and a terrible culture. I stayed through the situation to accomplish a huge win in my career (the project I was working to complete and launch), I worked with a few really stellar people who bonded together to get things done in spite of the horrible conditions. I came out alright - with a huge win personally and professionally. And I left the company.

This summer working at camp was one of the most impactful experiences of my life. I learned so much about my friends, my peers, and myself. I was my most genuine self- working hard and caring about the people I was working for and with. I was challenged and came to it. I now am trying to take that experience with me in my life outside of camp. It hasn't been easy. The perfect and ideal place has been interrupted with the real world- death, challenges impossible to overcome anger and frustration.

I drove down to my college town with my dad. It took 19 hours (he drove the whole way) and took two and a half days. I really missed having free time with my father since I moved out. We just got to hang out and share tons of music- I played Lorde and Bob Moses and he turned on Hank Williams and Django Reinhardt. We both love old folk and Jack Johnson, so there was plenty of that, too. It was a landmark for both of us. For me, I was leaving the state, town, and people I had grown up with for a new and daunting experience of college life. And he was saying goodbye to his only child in a way that he hadn't before. Plus, he was moving out of his house to a small apartment in the city. Even if I decided to turn back and go home with him, things would be different. I started my transition to adulthood that drive (nothing like my bat-mitzvah, I'll let you know). I love my father dearly and I know he loves me. I'm not sure if one call a week will ever be enough time to talk, no matter how independent and busy I get.

I think the most significant thing is Donald Trump becoming president. This was, and continues to be, a devastation to me personally, and as a citizen of this country. Part of what makes this so hard, is to understand the level of misogyny that is still present in our society. Personally, I have run into this so many times in my professional career. It's painful to know that it's not over... not by a long shot.

Two things come to mind. At work I've had significant opportunities. My dad also had some significant health issues.

My younger brother, who I'm pretty close to, moved away around this time last year. This has been pretty hard on me. I don't have many close friends in the area I can just hang out with casually, and so I've suddenly found myself alone almost always, whereas I used to constantly have someone by my side. We bickered a lot and he drove me crazy sometimes, but I really miss that companionship and knowing what his life is like. I think I've been harboring a lot of resentment towards him for this; maybe manifesting in some subconscious abandonment issues. We aren't as close (although he'd never admit it) and I feel both like the phone isn't as good for conveying what our lives away from one another are like. At the same time, it allows me some space to think about our relationship as siblings without feeling like I'm missing something, and I think he appreciates me as a sister a bit more. I still worry that we will continue to drift apart until some indie filmmaker discovers us and makes another "tragedy draws estranged siblings back together" movie. I go through a lot of periods where I feel generally suspicious of him. If I had a choice, I think I'd still like to have him in the neighborhood. He's not so good with words, so a lot of his support is through hugs and service. Most of that love and support has been lost in translation.

My first niece got married. I guess it affected me mostly because while the wedding was beautiful, and she seems very happy and his family is lovely, he's not Jewish. And her sister is also serious with a Catholic Boy. I know how hard I've worked, while not Orthodox, to show my children how important it is to marry someone Jewish, I still know its out of my control. And I know in a few generations it may be over...So its bittersweet. I hope my children marry Jewish. And raise their kids thus so. One is dong birthrite this year so I'm pleased about that.

I took a road trip with Mikey and Josh. It was unbelievable and it made me realize that we're even better friends that I thought we were. Traveling around the Southwest really helped me relax and opened my eyes to a new way of living. Reconnecting with nature helped as well.

Finally having the guts to apply for and get accepted to graduate school. I'm relieved and incredibly grateful that I got in on my first application. I'm looking forward to engaging my academic brain and I am also filled with stress about the experience to come. As of yet, I don't know where the money will come from and, I am worried I won't fit it or I'll be less able to do the work required of me than others in the program.

I worked in Hawaii! Something I would never think I would do. I worked hard and saved my money! I'm still on that Hawaii high! I can do anything! Never stay in a position where you're uncomfortable... took my own advice and landed in HAWAII THANK GOD

It's been a year (2017) of experiences. Some heartbreaking.. losing my nephew.. makes one stop (again) and look at life.. and resolve to make the moments count... or the one's that make one so grateful.. like the two holiday's we chose to experience.. that were brief but incredibly fabulous with fabulous awesome people. So yes, grateful, inspired to continue to live like this. To make the moments count. I'm getting better at it. And I will continue to... Resentful, no .. trying to stay on Awesome, Abundance, Enough.. thank you.

We stopped getting work. We ran out of money. We went into debt. Because of our age, we were and are severely stressed by this, and can't tell anyone, although they know we are on a seriously tight budget. Work is appearing on the horizon now, and we feel less terrified. I was afraid I had run out of resilience. He was fearful of being around people. It is beginning to show in our bodies and our faces, but resilience and courage are returning a little now.

Working with the holocaust survivors blew me away and shook the ground of my faith. Many questions about the efficacy of prayer. A year of anger and disappointment and heartbreak spiritually..

I honestly don't have many significant experiences in my life. They just don't happen to me - not enough "life" going on, I suppose. Outside of enjoyable, yet relatively normal things like travel, etc, the only significant occurance would be winning a cake competition. It was nice having my work get noticed. Sometime I feel like I'm the only one who thinks I'm talented, and others are just being nice. It was validating to have completely unbiased judges turn things in my favor. Makes me feel like maybe I still have a chance at doing this thing...

It looks like last year, I framed this answer more as an "accomplishment" than an "experience." I guess that means I'm allowed to do that again. So in January I signed up for and started an ESL teacher certification course through TFLI. 3 months. 150 hours. It was me doing a thing I've been interested in for a long time. I think it was sort of out of desperation. I knew I was just a few months from turning 40 and that I couldn't see a way out of working as a barista right through that particular landmark. So I did the course. I enjoyed it. I wouldn't say I excelled, but I did every assignment and I interacted with students and teachers better than I've been known to in the past. I finished. And then I started a teaching job. 2 days a week. 4 classes. It doesn't even start to replace my barista job for income, but it's a move in a different direction. I don't know if this is my new thing. I don't know how long I'll keep doing it. Right now, I feel like I have a lot to learn as far as time-management and lesson planning. But I'm glad I did a thing. I know more. I understand some things about myself that I didn't before. And I turned 40. And I'm still a barista. I didn't float off down the cumberland on an iceberg. I'm a little sad and I'm a little relieved. It happened and I don't need to worry about it anymore. I feel too old, but I'm just the same. Maybe I feel too much just the same. I guess that's more of an experience than an accomplishment.

Making friends where I live. I am grateful for finding this plase

This year has been a year full of learning for us on some issues that our son was dealing with. He was having issues sleeping, gaining weight and issues in school. Luckily we have worked with the school and with medical professionals to identify a few issues that were going on. He was diagnosed with Celiac Disease five months ago and he has been receiving additional help at school. The journey to get to this point has been long and tiring but we are grateful that we now have some more resources and can help him be successful. Since we have addressed this, he is more successful and enjoying school and food in new ways.

One of my best friends died doing what he loved. Robbie Stewart gave me the greatest gift of finding my passions in conservation and now my drive to be involved is helping mountains move... or in this case saving giraffes, elephants and the Maasai culture. I have gone far and beyond my comfort zone living in Kenya now in cowdung-mud hut for three months to teach English at the school, learn how to be a wildlife conservationist and am taking every opportunity that comes my way to ensure this is a forever life career. People are just as motivated as I am and through these shares as I am through them. I just want to keep this flow going infinitely. Robbie gave everything to save Sharks so my focus is to be on that mission of positive impact. Right when I felt so lost, selfish and purposeless (in a head space of feeling I was just making up this quest piece by piece with no roots-which is true in some sense but with drive now and a vision) and homesick, Tyler reached out to tell me that Robbie had studied at the university in Kenya for conservation and marine biology prior to making the shift to shark conservation. I feel him with me every step, so I'm inspired by Robbie and completely motivated every day, in every moment.

I'm inspired by myself and the people around me who have helped me get to this day. I got the certification I needed this year to start my own business. 2 years ago my goal for the next year was to have a job. That happened, and then I took it up a level by doing what I really want to be doing and doing it my own way. It reminds me to get to the core of the goals, honor real dreams, and also let the momentum of the good aspects in the journey carry you where you need to go too. I feel a lot of my 10Q questions this year will be about my business. I'm pretty proud of that.

Settling into this place, this community, this time in the world and regaining my mojo - my voice, my belief in myself and my gifts that I offer the world. I have worked to stand in my own value and am free to share and radiate outward in a different way, asking for what I want and need. So many things had to shift to get me to this place but, as I embark on yoga teacher training and putting myself out there into the world as a portrait photographer, I am SO ready to let my light and spirit shine. I am grateful to have been able to transcend the many moves and the recent fallow season, to sit with that stuck energy and to clearly see what I want for my life - how I want to feel, who I want to show up as, what I want to create. Getting to do the work to make that life happen is inspiring! - a little each day will get me where I'm going.

My father died this year. He died in June and I have so much guilt over it sometimes I don't know what to do with myself. I regret not helping as much as I should have, I resent my step-mother for making helping hard, I am in agony over the loss. My father was an amazing man that made me feel special. I still pick up the phone to call him and then I realize he's not there. I wonder if I will ever feel whole again. I wonder if I will ever be myself again.

The most significant experience really just happened. I've applied for a programming job. Getting ready for it was stressful, writing a program and getting it up on the Apple Store, pushing forward every day, meeting up with people at the SA iOS group. It's been long and frankly uncomfortable. Just yesterday I got a reply from them, so they really only considered my materials for less than a day, and it was a stock "thanks, we have other candidates." I actually didn't expect to get the job, but I was really hoping to at least get in an interview. That has really disappointed me, and I feel rejected, obviously. Today I'm better, but I found myself breaking out in tears on my way to my work yesterday. I dread going in today. I must move on.

Worked super hard for the first time in my life , and got results. Realized that if I push myself, I can accomplish great things.

I started a doctoral program. I've wanted my doctorate since I was a little girl, so it was very exciting to finally be on the path to making that dream real.

I have had so many significant experiences this year. Wolf and I deciding to get married (although the formal proposal is still forthcoming) is definitely one of them. We've had so many adventures this year. Our trip to Cuba, and the man in Fusterland giving us a coin to bless our marriage (without knowing if we were married) was certainly huge for me. It seemed like a sign and meant a lot to me. On the downside, I have experienced significant workplace challenges this year that have left me disheartened. I didn't expect that getting my dream job would make me so miserable.

I was baptized on April 23rd this year. Although I have believed in Jesus for a long time I had not really come face to face with God, my repentance and a commitment to walk with Him. I talk with the I Am everyday and my life is more complete. I feel relieved and inspired. I am now getting involved with Good News Club to offer the hope of eternal life with God to children. Why did I wait so long? It is good to put others before myself. It is good to know that I am loved and I am forgiven. Jesus is the Christ.

I had a miscarriage - attended my 13 week scan to find that the baby had died around 8 weeks. I was devastated and everyone around me seemed to be pregnant and throwing it in my face. I was horrified to think that I had spent the last 5 weeks carrying a dead baby around and had no idea. I had an ERPC as couldn't face physically passing blood and tissue. The physical recovery was pretty good - emotionally it is very tough and I still feel like my heart is getting ripped out every time I think about it. One month on and I am so desperate to become pregnant again.

Mom was diagnosed with cancer while we (Lenny Mar and me) were on our first REAL vacation. I remember riding the minions ride, bawling and laughing hysterically the entire time. People had to think I was crazy! We saved for so long and spent so much money. We had one shot to give Mar the traditional American fun family vacation. We couldn't let the news affect us, but how do you not. We all enjoyed our time but the memory and the vacation itself both have this sad under current to them. Changed the entire year.b

Le mariage d'Elise et Louie : moment magique. Découverte de la famille Salto. Une entente immédiate. Une belle expérience en Suède avec la famille avec les amis tout ça dans un cadre idyllique. Une visite de Stockholm, une découverte de la Suède. Un moment magique à Noël dans cette maison dans la campagne avec la chaleur de cette famille. Un Noël comme on voudrait en avoir chaque année

Making & being in LHB! It's amazing the personal growth that I've accumulated by being around such a diverse (personality-wise) group of people. I feel like I've become more outgoing and comfortable around people in the last year.

I just had a magical trip to the Canadian Atlantic Maritimes. Spent much time in Anne of Green Gables country, drank a lot of tea, and enjoyed being in a place with trees. Doug and I had a chance to reconnect and appreciate each other. It was the perfect cap to a summer without surgeries or recoveries...lots of art and inspiration

This was the first year my daughter was with me - first inside, than outside. Just as the year began I knew about her existence, and then I waited, worked, studied and hoped. She seems just too good to be happening for me. I'm still the old myself however. It's just that there's this new person in the world.

Mom died. For five months we watched her deteriorate. Dad was kind and angry and desperate. I don't think he really believed she was sick. He thought she was giving up when she was so tired. She didn't complain. We had to watch closely to know she hurt. They lived with us for her last two weeks. I feel privileged to have been there checking her vitals, giving her morphine, bathing her. Hospice was so very kind to all of us. Dad seemed okay when she first passed. He even smiled when talking to people during her services. He has gone down hill ever since. There were the constant references to, and minor attempts, suicide late last winter. The three day hold. The resentment that he was being watched and restrained. We have worked so hard to give him what he wants/would make him happy/content. None of it has really worked. Now, after trying to keep him home with family the aggressiveness has become too much. Threatening to hit/choke has drawn a line for us we hate. For two weeks he has been in a home. For two weeks we have gone to visit him, taken him things, tried to help him know we still love him. None of it seems to help. His dementia is getting worse by the day. I get to be his target most of the time but everyone is a possible target. Or all of us. His time sense is gone. He confuses so many things. He does not believe what we say. He told Anna that its as though he has a bunch of story cards that have been mixed up. We love him so much. He has been such an honorable, hard-working man. Such a good husband and father. I wish he could know somewhere that we love him. I wish he weren't so afraid. I don't blame him for being angry and its okay for him to blame or call me names. The real man I've known for most of my life isn't there. I only wish he could be at peace within himself. I suppose the dementia will progress to that eventually. We will miss him but he will have more peace. That is what is more important now. I love you Dad.

I took my two daughters and granddaughter and daughter-in-law to Portugal and then to northern Spain including Barcelona with just Melissa and Pamela. It was an amazing trip and life-changing for me. Such a blessing to be able to do something wonderful for the family like that. the most best I got on the whole trip was when I thought I had lost my cell phone which was still in the side pocket of the door. I started exercising more frequently and I am grateful for that and I am now planning a shoulder replacement. I have traveled much more in this past year than ever before maybe even more days away and then at home looking forward to the Qigong Retreat in October Completed as an IL - relieved

My mother-in-law passed away this year after fighting cancer for almost 30 years. She was truly the glue of our family, and it's been so sad without her. In the days before her death, we were all able to share quality time with her. Until the very end, her greatest concern was the well-being of her family. We didn't always see eye to eye, but I miss her so, especially for the involved role she played in my daughter's life. I'm glad they were able to know each other, and although my daughter is too young to remember her, I want to keep her memory alive.

I separated from my now ex wife. Due to this I loved across the country to New England. Along with this I have been my now girlfriend for whom I am dearly grateful. This has been the best move that has ever happened to me.

I decided to be willing and let go of expectations about how things should look when it came to publishing or even writing a book or even what genre. Everything changed. I ended up with exactly what I wanted in urban fantasy (not my genre before) and finally making money, building a fan base and finding out I could do more than I realized. I'm exhausted, grateful and inspired and I've learned how to just keep going and take breaks for fun or swimming or yoga and dream bigger. A lot bigger.

My oldest child graduated HS left for college. I was surprised by how hard it was to parent a young adult trying to find his independence this past year and in all honesty although I miss him- I don't miss him as much as I had feared I might. I was surprised by this reaction. Maybe it will be different when the younger one goes away to school?

This past year I ran my first half marathon. I had planned to do a 12 week (I believe) training plan that would allow me to work my way up to running the full 13.1 miles. About 3 to 4 weeks before the race I quit running though. I just lost interest in it and had no motivation to continue running. I still ran the race and finished fairly well, thank goodness I had trained up to about 9 miles. I'm not sure what came over me when I decided to quit running though. I just told everyone I was bored and it was hard to run alone for that long, which is true, but I think I was just falling into a pit of despair and didn't have the motivation to wake up early and run or leave the house after work. I still feel that way. I'm not 100% sure what is causing this feeling but I hope that by this time next year I'll have fought my way back to who I am.

After 4 years of recovering from a traumatic brain injury, my boss got back up on a stage to tell his story at a big conference. Leading up to it, it was like a battle to get him to do it, but I knew it would be a moment of gratitude for our team and for him that he's been able to be resilient and heal. He's not 100%, and will probably never be back to the person who hired me 6 years ago, but I'm glad he's where he is today. I'm happy that he's worked hard to recover and we've all worked hard to be patient (not always) and empathetic and keeping the doors open on the business that's been the best place I've ever worked. I cried a lot of happy tears and sad tears. I miss the man who hired me...he's still in there a little bit. But I'm glad others heard his story.

I graduated from college! It was crazy -- I've been a student for as long as I can remember, and now I'm a "real adult." I am grateful for the experience and for all the recognition I received during graduation. I am relieved to be done with school and all the stresses that come with it, although there are new stresses that I have found come with having a full time job and becoming my own support system.

I was able to make another trip to Cuba last March in preparation for creating a study abroad trip to Cuba for my college. I discovered that I know Cuba. I understand the people, the culture, the problems and the successes. And I know that though I didn't grow up in revolutionary Cuba I still value their revolutionary ideals. As a Cuban-American I disagree with most of my compatriots because I see Cuba as a beacon of how we don't have to be capitalist and greedy and always wanting more and better and technologically the best. We can love more and hope more and be more just. This is what I want to be and Cuba always reminds me of my best self.

I moved into my first apartment! It has been interesting finally being able to act independently and really create my own rules for the first time. It is a little stressful, but man is it a relief.

I had hip replacement surgery. I was quite cavalier about it & expected it to be very easy. A good friend had both hips done and said "It's the easiest thing you'll ever do" given that I'm in good shape - I figured that I'd have the same experience. It was way more difficult than expected, I had some complications (a fever) and I discovered just how impatient I am. I'm both grateful and relieved that it's behind me - it was a 'good' lesson in having to pay attention to my needs, my thoughts, my impatience and my expectations.

I bought a house in November 2016. After years of saving and looking, I was able to go through the process on my own and make it happen. I am grateful for all that I learned about myself and my needs. I am relieved that I found a home I love. I never thought that I would be doing this without a partner but I think I am better off because of my ability to handle such a detailed and intense thing on my own.

A significant experience that happened in the last year was the suicide of my son's friend. It affected me more than I think it should have--- while my son and his friend were not particularly close when she died, she was a beautiful young woman full of life and love, who had spent time in our home, who had spent time in our lives. It made me feel regretful--- I would like to think that I am someone who reaches out to young people, who offers to be a person that they can call day or night, and that in the time my son and Hannah were not dating, I lost sight of what was going on in her life and I wish I had reached out more.

I became a Jew in 5777. It was a major spiritual and emotional transition for me, and I feel a deeper connection to Judaism and the Jewish people than ever before. The immersion at the mikvah and subsequent conversion ceremony at our synagogue were beautiful moments which I will forever cherish. I am looking forward to fully embracing a Jewish life and living my first full year as a Jew in 5778. I am even blowing the shofar at services tomorrow!

Grateful yet exhausted to have started grad school

In July, my partner revealed to me that they had been cheating on me for the year prior. We had not been connecting very deeply in our relationship, but I really did not realize that it had gotten to that point. Even that statement makes it sound like I feel it's my fault. It's not. It affected me by making me question myself, and forcing myself to be more intentional. I am both grateful, for the opportunity to build anew. I am relieved that it was not just me being paranoid. I am resentful though. I've been harboring a lot of anger. I don't know that I've quite inspired myself yet.

Stopped seeing a therapist to deal with the results of my former partners' addictions and my struggles around the dissolution of our relationship. I was angry that I had to go through that and mad at myself for not seeing it. I was resentful and hurt and struggled with the aftermath (and continuing aftermath). I learned to rely on myself and my gut and that my intuition DOES work. Learned that I can trust myself.

I'd have to say my pericardial window surgery at the end of June. Holy cow-it came out of left field. I am beyond grateful that my GP caught it before it did me in. The experience showed me that what usually happens is not always the stuff we worry about but on the flip side has made me more nervous to think-what else don't I know that may happen. Cancer really stinks and I am tired of dealing with it but again, grateful for my doctor and the drugs that are available to me.

This past year I went to Israel over the summer. I went with my camp friends on NFTY in Israel for 4 weeks plus 1 week in Europe. This experience was life changing and made me so much more grateful of my strong Jewish connection.

I had my beautiful daughter, became a mother, watched my husband become a father, my mother a grandmother, my grandmother a great grandmother and my friends a family. Nothing has ever inspired me more.

The death of both of my parents shaped so much of this year, with many days of worrying, three trips to Milwaukee, intense and important times with my siblings, and an amazing day of remembrance for them. I am sad -- not as sad as I sometimes think I ought to be, though that also reflects the relief associated with the end of their suffering and our anxieties. I am also deeply grateful, first to be reminded of the strength of my family but also to have had the opportunity that this long struggle and all the losses brought to deepen my connections with my brother and sister. I also appreciate how this experience cemented my sense of being in community in my synagogue, where I found more support and comfort than I had expected. I was reminded, too, that I can count on friends and colleagues for support. While I am happy to see this difficult year come to an end, I come out of it feeling stronger and more deeply connected.

In October 2016, we lost our first pregnancy. I was so heartbroken, especially after having overcome some women's health issues in the previous year. I was so upset and angry and confused. In January 2017 we found out we were expecting again. Pregnancy was a magnificent human experience due me. It was such a challenge and certainly had an edge of sadness because of our earlier loss. Preparing ourselves, our home, and our lifestyle for our new baby was joyful, stressful, and had a real impact on my relationship with my husband. This journey- through both pregnancies- allowed me to acknowledge our love in new ways.

My grandmother died last October. I was very close to her. It was expected but still sad. I'm still grieving, but also comforted by the many memories. I'm grateful for all the time I did get with her. She did inspire me to live life to the fullest and not take things for granted.

Of all the things that have happened in my own life, some of which have been shifting my course in decently large ways, I still think nothing this year can hold a candle to the effects of the 2016 election. The campaign itself was ugly, and what has followed - though I had hoped it would have the opposite effect - has only increased our tendency to separate ourselves from people we disagree with, and shy away from tough conversations. I am disappointed in the world that has been created for us via the isolation of the Internet and social media algorithms; and for all my talk of the opposite, I know I struggle deeply with the idea of acknowledging this and breaking it. Personally, I am deeply ashamed and embarrassed to have Donald Trump as our leader, and would have loved to see Hillary Clinton take the post. But I would like to be more willing to calmly and rationally talk about it with someone who thinks the opposite.

Our new minister resigned after only 6 or so months. I was not too unhappy about this as I didn't particularly like his style of ministry, but had decided that if most of the congregation appreciated him, I could learn to be OK with it. I withdrew from some projects that worked directly with him and was happy to be useful elsewhere. Several other members are still really unhappy with how it was handled. I think it was handled professionally and kindly, within the parameters of what was contractually allowable. I do not understand the disagreement over this and find it difficult to respect those who are angry with the board over it. I am grateful to the board for making it possible for us to find a more suitable minister. I feel inspired to be more honest in my role as friend and congregation member.

I guess all the Hurricanes have been significant. Stuck in FL for a week, then Irma hits FL and now there are two that could potentially hit New England while we are there for vaca. Grateful, so far, not to be directly impacted. Sad for all that have been.

My boyfriend, Alex, and I started a website & blog. We started discussing the project in November, started building it in January, and sent it live in July. I am grateful for & inspired by this project every day. We have been looking for genuine ways to collaborate for three years (we've been together for almost five) and this website just feels like the thesis of our relationship. Even if no one else looks at it, it's an amazing way for us to catalog our life together. It also makes our relationship so much more cohesive, like our priorities are totally aligned. It's truly been such an exciting experience to collaborate on a project that we are both so passionate about, and it is humbling and awe-inspiring to be so supportive of each other as we challenge our talents, knowledge, and passions together.

This past year I got married and went on my Honeymoon. We went to Greece to visit my husbands family and see the sights. It was the first vacation I planned on my own. I was so proud of myself. But it was also very intimdating to realize that I was creating a new a new family away from the one I grew up with.

My mother passed away unexpectedly this past March. I lost my father 7 years ago and am an only child. It was life changing. Although I know she had a great life and lived out all of her dreams I'm lost without her. I feel so alone. I had no idea it would impact me so much. I tell people I'm fine. But I'm not. I have 3beautiful. Hikdren ans a husband who tries so hard to please me. But I'm just never satisfied. I'm not sure why. I just feel lost and so alone. I know on paper I have my family and they are there for me. But it doesn't fill the void. I'm 47 and had so many lucky years with her. But it wasn't enough.

In this past year, I was elected the Religious and Cultural Vice President of my Temple Youth Group. In a sense, I feel all of the emotions above. I am grateful because I worked hard to obtain the position, and I have a multitude of ideas I would love to carry out in the position. I am relieved because I was unsure of if I would win the position, but I did! I am resentful, not of those who voted for me, but of myself because I have assigned myself too many commitments this year, and it is causing me lots of stress in my everyday life. I am inspired because I feel that I can put a lot of myself into this position, and I can go further with it than people have in the past. I feel a lot of things about it, but mostly, I feel proud of myself and of what I've done to achieve that goal.

I came to college, and I feel like I am exactly where I should be. The process of researching and applying was not too terrible, and I feel like I've shown myself that I can be quite independent. I did a large portion of the application process by myself. Now in college, I feel ready to learn and experience new things. I'm ready to be outside of my comfort zone and build my life. I feel happy and content in college. I am having a wonderful first year so far. I also ended a long-term relationship, which had to be done. Near the ending of the relationship, it sucked and hurt for both parties, but in the end I feel content. I think I've learned that when you've truly loved someone, it doesn't stop. There's always a part of you that loves them. So love really is forever... There'll always be a soft spot in me for him, but I can move forward.

I finally and fully committed to being vegan after being a vegetarian for so many years. I have wanted to be vegan for a long time, and I'm so grateful I took the risk and made the jump. My husband has become vegan with me and we both feel great, physically and spiritually. It feels really right to commit to animal rights and ecological organizations and start to build community and support. "Knowing better and then doing better" has always been my mantra and being vegan does more for our planet than any other commitment or effort. Yay!

A number of friends and acquaintances, in their 70's like me, died or had health crises in the past year. One woman, Barbara, was particularly dear to me and her death left a hole. As these leaves on my personal tree start to fall faster, how can I fail to hold each day as close as I can and be grateful?

Reid was born! He changed me in ways I didn't imagine would happen. He is the sweetest, cutest little thing in the world and I am trying to hard to enjoy him! Practically speaking I knew things would change, but you just can't imagine the love. I'm so grateful for him and I feel that he completes our family. I can't imagine life without him! I genuinely feel that way.

A very busy year. We started by trying to sell our vacation in Costa Rica. A friend offered to help sell it to another friend. Instead he muddied the waters so badly that the deal is falling apart. He threatened us with the lawsuit and other complications. We won't know until next week if the buyer will go through with the deal. Very stressful. My dad died in July and that was difficult to. My sister and I have been getting along with all the things we need to do and the mess my dad left behind. My husband's Parkinson's has gotten worse. It's all affected me by just adding to my stress, I've lost more weight, and sometimes I just don't know where I'm going . I have difficulty being at home and need to travel all the time.

I feel like lots of significant things have happened - I met the man I hope to marry. We moved in together really quickly and it was completely the right thing for us to do even though it was so different to what I would have expected I’d do. He made me feel brave enough to trust him and let go of all the things I was scared of regarding commitment. I also had a surgery that removed the Mirena coil that was stuck inside me and it gave me ownership of my body back. My best friend was going to move to Israel...and now she’s not. But dealing with that experience just showed me how much I value her and the fact that she lives so close to me. It showed me how much I want her in every stage of my life. I am extremely relieved that she isn’t moving away and I don’t have to deal with that separation.

Just this past week, I found out a mentor of mine for the past year passed away unexpectedly. She was healthy and youthful, and while I only knew her briefly, she truly inspired me and touched me in so many ways. If not for her, I would not have been able to successfully survive one of the hardest years of my life. She believed in me and believed in my abilities as a teacher when I had no reason to feel like I could do it. This experience gave me a chance to think about how I impact and affect other people's lives. I want to spend the next year making choices that are mindful but also choices that are going to make a difference to someone else. I don't think going into Rosh Hashana, I would have been thinking this way had I not recently experienced this loss.

I was being constantly harassed at my work but didn't have any money to quit. Baruch Hashem, a family member that had passed away had me as a beneficiary on his IRA and this money gave me a cushion to leave a very hostile situation and the ability to start my own business. While the working condition was so awful, I did learn a lot and am grateful for the experience, the money and my own business. I am blessed

Listening to my grandnephews becoming political has made me more hopeful of the future in the midst of this political/social mess.

Well, I could say my wedding 3 days ago was a significant experience, but that would be too easy. Most of the past year has been preparation leading up to the wedding, from shopping for and purchasing the engagement ring to the long months of wedding planning. So I'm going to say our trip to Asia in January/February. It was the first international trip for me & Beth and I really wasn't sure what to expect. I've traveled internationally many times, while she barely has, so maybe I didn't fully grasp what a totally new & unusual experience it would be for her. We had some ups and downs--especially early on, as we coped with the craziness of Bangkok--but we survived the 2 1/2 week trip and learned a lot about each other in the process. I think the trip definitely proved we could persevere through trying circumstances and still come out smiling. It bodes well for future trips we take. I think Beth will feel much more comfortable and secure taking these big trips with me, and I learned enough about her to know her limits and how far I can push her. I can't wait for our honeymoon(s)!

I participated in my hometown Women's March on January 21, 2017, one day after our farce of a president was inaugurated. Far more people turned out than I expected. I thought perhaps a few hundred would show up; the final count was between 10,000 to 12,000. Before the event, I attended a service at the local Reform Synagogue. The rabbis and other congregants had played a large role in organizing the local march and both rabbis spoke at the opening ceremony before we hit the streets. The event energized me and reminded me how important collective action can be in calling out injustice. I'm still dismayed to wake up each morning and realize our great country is being led by a narcissistic and willfully ignorant reality TV show host, but seeing so many women I knew in my small city come out to protest made me realize I was not alone. When I got home and checked my Facebook feed, I was gratified to see how many of my friends participated in the various marches across the country and remain politically active in the months following the march. It gives me some small hope that we might survive the damages caused by the corrupt and petty man elected president this past November.

I proposed and my proposal was accepted! I am grateful to The Divine for enabling us to reach this point in our lives, for reinforcing the grit needed to point and drive myself toward being who I want me to be and to my beloved for letting me in and for trudging through the last seven very difficult years with me. My day starts with modeh-ani and despite the obstacles, self and externally imposed, I find numerous opportunities throughout the day to express gratitude and hope. Even when I miss the mark, I can be grateful for the opportunity to apologize, for teshuvah, and for the intention to do better next time.

This past year actually in a short span I learned that my job was insecure, and my wife was thinking she would leave me. My job fell apart, and my marriage didn't (certainly the preferable outcome). How did it leave me? Broken, damaged, rangy. I'm getting better, it's like I de-aged. I'm angrier cruder, but more okay with my own faults.

My newly formed synagogue is changing. People in the immediate community are still saying they are supportive, but they are not attending services. But I have been live streaming services and have discovered a global community for my services that is growing larger with every broadcast. I am disappointed that the people with whom I interact on a daily basis are separating themselves from our spiritual community, but blown away by the response from people I have never met from countries I have never even heard of.

The ending of a serious romantic relationship I was in was the catalyst for much pain, growth, and introspection for the majority of this year. While I am incredibly grateful for the memories and time we shared, I don't think I am prepared to say I am grateful the relationship ended when it did. I know that ultimately, we had deep differences of priorities and that in the end, if we were meant to be - I would have been given equal or higher ranking among a listing of people and alternatives in his life. I am somewhat relieved the relationship is over, as in the end I was experiencing unending anxiety, angst, pain, and self-critical behaviors that only reiterated my anxious state. I was drawn to questioning myself and my worth at every turn and step, and that behavior was both unsustainable and unhealthy. While incredibly painful, the slow ending of the relationship caused me to get the help I had needed for some time. While other greatly significant happenings followed this breakup, and still 7 months later greatly impact my days, I feel more prepared to face these happenings and overcome inevitable later strife. I am spending more days alone, but I am slowly becoming more aware that I deserve to be treated with the thoughtfulness, understanding, and care I extend to others, especially him. He is not a bad person, quite to the contrary, he is a great person, but I am awakening to the idea that he was the wrong person for me given my hopes, desires, dreams, aspirations, and largely, my faults. I am not resentful, but if I am being honest - I am deeply hurt. It would be easy to sit back and point 'See! You did the thing I asked you and warned you early on that I was afraid of! You, Sir, are a LIAR!'. But, I am trying to challenge myself to instead think that I play some role in the behaviors I tolerate and attract. The more I accept being a second rate priority in someone's life, the lower a priority I will become. I feel inspired in little ways, some of which admittedly are greatly selfish and mis-rooted. In an odd way, I am proud of myself for learning to steal moments, things, and time for myself; I am finding myself learning to be selfish and selective for the first time in my life, this is such an underrated skill. Despite the pain, confusion, hurt, angst, and yes heartbreak I feel the light at the end of the tunnel of this journey is starting to come into focus. I am ready to approach a new year with less memories of 'The last time I did X he was here.' and a more forward-looking, self-oriented focus. Of all that I have learned, I am taking away his unwavering commitment to what I now know was his best friend, himself. I am choosing instead, to marry my values of inclusion, compassion, and thoughtfulness into a belief that if I don't put my oxygen mask on first, I will never be able to help others.

I decided not to get divorced, and moved back in with my husband. Although I still think it was a good idea to move out (and will ultimately help the success of our marriage), I'm happy to be back. I had to make that choice for myself, as did he. When I am upset with him, or about our relationship, I look back at that experience and it helps me feel good about my choice to stay with him.

I retired from a state agency where I had worked 35 years. I am grateful that I have things to do and fill my time and I can explore my many and various interests at my own pace: golf, FEMA reservist, raw beginner classical guitar, books I have been meaning to read, social entrepreneur, angel investor. I'm making it up as I go!

I got married! It was not earth shattering event that made me feel that my life was changing forever but rather it was something that juts felt as the right thing to do. My wife and I are the same in thinking we did not need to spend too much on our marriage nor invite too many people. It was a small and staid ceremony and we enjoyed every minute of it!

Well I left medical school, it's a mixture of relief because I was so unhappy with the false accusations including one of rape and one of purse sadness as I really do love medicine. But it led to me having a hypnotherapy business as I started HMI, I finished my program in 2.5 months, then certification in 3 months, but I was already in private practice right after graduation.

There is a Chinese curse that says may you live in interesting times. I think that the year 5777 will be remembered as a national fulfillment of that curse. So. The night of November 8, 2016 will be remembered as one of the most traumatic evenings I have experienced that did not involve the death or sickness of a loved one. The election of Donald Trump would have to be the most significant thing that happened for me in the past year. It has changed everything- from the amount of news and podcasts that I consume, the amount of time I spend on Twitter, the constant gnawing feelings of anxiety and powerlessness. On the positive side- participating in the Women's March with my daughter, daughters-in-law and sons was incredibly empowering, and watching my kids become politically aware and active has been truly rewarding.

I lost my job, a week later, got in a car accident, the world seemed against me at every turn. So I did a lot of reflection. I discovered a lot of my family history, learned the truth about my heritage, even though I have no status in the community due to a lack of documentation; I know the truth and I know who I am. I started my own business, bought my first car without a cosigner joined the 6 figures club, and starting a great relationship with a gorgeous Ukrainian model. Life can really turn around on a dime.

The split upwith my fiancee was difficult. I am somewhat relieved, resentful and lonely all at the same time.

My husband came out as bisexual and it threw our marriage into turmoil. We both had to reevaluate what we wanted out of our relationship and each other - and to do the work of rebuilding after he'd pulled away while he was figuring things out. I'm both relieved and grateful - relieved that with counseling and a lot of crying and talking that we've come out the other side mostly intact. And grateful that we still love each other enough to want to make that effort.

I made a mistake while driving and totaled my car. It has made me a better, slower, more cautious driver. I am relieved that my children weren't in the car. I am mad at myself for making a bad decision and all the impacts it has on my family.

My family and I moved into a large new home that I never in a million years thought we'd be able to afford. I feel grateful and blessed.

A significant event that just happened is my beloved cat of 16 years just passed away. I am grateful for the long time we had together, for the love and comfort we shared. how he was the family united. I feel good that I gave him medicine faithfully for 4 years and and oversaw his health He made me feel good about nurturing. I am still in active mourning and feel empty that he is no longer around.

My Mom died in January. It left me depressed and mournful, to this day.

I let someone evil in my life that broke me down to the worst person I could be. I stopped loving myself and let him win. A couple months ago, after years of lies,cheating, mental and physical abuse... I left. I decided I deserved better and found value in myself again. I'm grateful for the experience because now I know what I want. I'm able to recognize narcissistic nastiness in others and I can teach others how to not become victim of stupidity and self hate.

There are two really significant events. Eli's bar mitzvah and Ellen's passing. I am grateful that Eli had a beautiful Bar Mitzvah despite his shitty year, despite the fact that his grandmother died, and despite everything that happened next. No one will take away that memory. I feel like we are reliving right now the joy of that moment. I did feel relived when it was over, but more inspired than I thought possible.

So many things. I went on Remote Year. It was life changing. It gave me a whole new family and reconfirmed my believe in tribal living/home is where your peeps are/I want to live in more than one place/not travel for holidays, but have a dagbesteding/purpose. I met some of the most amazing people and I couldn't be more grateful for that! I joined a sales team. Never thought that would happen. It's stressful because things are new to me. But that is exciting too! Not sure where I will be in a couple of months from now, but I love the RY fam, I love learning something new, I'm standing up for myself (asked for a raise!) and dedicated to my job (I care) and I'm excited about where I am professionally. I broke up with my on-off boyfriend of 5+ years and it feels good. No longer keeping something alive that is already dead. No longer not being the best version of me (or a slightly less worse version of me ;) ). Not sure where I'll be next in terms of relationship, or settling and that is kinda weird. But I feel good where I am on a day to day basis. I will get my IUD renewed which means I make a semi conscious choice to not have kids any time soon (even though it is reversible, it feels that way, which is different from how I think I felt 2 years ago).

Auditioning and being cast in a lead role in a musical. It helped me overcome fears of imperfection, of failing and it gave me confidence and faith in myself. I'm grateful for the experience and inspired to put myself out there again. The blessing outweighs the fear.

On October 8, 2016, in a freak accident, I severed half of a finger. This affected me in multiple ways, including physical pain and embarrassment over both the stupidity I felt for doing something I perceived to be very stupid and vane feelings about my hand never looking normal again. The greatest pain I felt was emotional because it was yet another difficult experience in a year (2016) where my oldest friend passed away suddenly at age 38, my mother was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer, and my 18 month old daughter needed surgery to correct issues that were causing failure to thrive (thankfully the surgery was successful). Oddly, I developed a certain sense of pride in how I was ultimately able to handle my injury from an emotional perspective. The reason I was able to handle it was the perspective I gained from the loss of my friend. How can I compare what I was going through when I looked at my friend's widow, who had to deal with the awful tragedy of burying her husband less than a month after their son was born? Bottom line - I couldn't. Aside the first day or two, there wasn't much self-pity except for occasional moments. I simply had to deal with it. If this injury had happened a year earlier, I would have reacted differently. Between this injury, other stresses that I had dealt with, and additional stresses I care not to mention online, I found that I came out a stronger person. I have a really good life. I have an amazing wife, two beautiful children, and a great group of friends and family members. Having 9.5 fingers instead of 10 simply isn't that big a deal.

I started a new job, in June. Not only is this a new job, at a neighborhood health center, but it's a new direction. From the first day on the job, it's felt like coming home. There is a spirit here, and a respect for our patients and clients, that is respectful, thoughtful and even holy, in the sense of the goodness of intention and righteousness of the work. I've enjoyed the work I've had up to this point, and feel that I've been productive, creative and industrious. This new opportunity is a gift.

I studied abroad this past summer in Barcelona, Spain with trips to Madrid, Lisbon, the Amalfi Coast, and Interlaken in there. It was a good experience, but I definitely felt "jipped." It was one of those things that you always dream of doing and then you have so many expectations and it just doesn't live up to all of them. The main thing everyone talked about was how you make so many lifelong friends and have great experiences with them. I made one, thank goodness, but this was only one person out of a potential 75-ish. She is wonderful and I would not trade her for the world, but I feel like I may have missed out on a few things perhaps because of it. It made me doubt myself as a truly likable person at first, but it has made me more sure of myself now though. I don't want to be someone that I'm not and I don't want to spend time with others who do not want to be with me. I am much more open about who I am as a person and have been fighting against my anxiety even more to be my true self and not diminish who I am.

Ian started school. I'm grateful and relieved! He settled in so well, got on with his teacher, made friends, learned lots. My mental health has never been better now that I've rediscovered a life separate from him.

In the past year my wife and I have had 3 miscarriages. To be honest, I don't know how I feel about it. I have lots of emotions. I am grateful we still have our health and nothing serious happened to my wife during those times, but angry, hurt, resentful, worried, etc. It has left my wife very angry with the world and, to some extent, God, as well as an inner turmoil thinking her body failed her/us and that she is the reason we don't have children. I hope this year will bring new experiences that will only be positive. I would like to believe there is a reason for everything, but it is hard to see sometimes. I pray for only good things to happen this year and it be a year of happiness and health!

the happiest thing was getting engaged. It wasn't fireworks or a dramatic exclamation in honor of Facebook. It was a simple, relaxed, express of satisfaction, recognition and commitment. And that's been the theme of the year in total: seeking out satisfaction, recognizing the good, and acting to prioritize it. Sometimes I'm (we're) succeeding more, other times less. But pushing forward to do better tomorrow-that's commitment. The less happy thing was recognizing how unhappy my parents are with each other, and how bad they are to each other. The experience definitely took place while on a two week vacation with them, a true lowlight of my life. Since then, I'm trying to stay out of their way, both to save myself and my own sanity, and to protect them. Unfortunately this means we are falling out of touch and losing our relationship.

My third child underwent skull surgery in January at just 3 months old. I can't remember a time when I was more afraid. My stomach was in a knot from the moment he was taken from my arms until the moment he was in them again. I was so relieved that it was over and that he was ok that I happily spent the next few days in the hospital holding him 24/7. Today he's almost 1. He learned to walk at just 8 1/2 months. He climbs furniture and dances. I can't believe how amazing and resilient he is! I am grateful every day that I get to be his mom!

Donald Trump was elected President. I have yet to recover. I am disheartened because I predicted things would get worse, and they have. His victory was a glaring acknowledgement that we have not come far enough with respect to civil rights, humane treatment of people, equal justice for all and there is pain and suffering for too many.

In the last year I transferred to a full, four-year university. After a lifetime of avoiding the difficulties of university life, I finally took the plunge and started. While Green River college helped, I have found my true niche in academia. I love being there surrounded by people with the same passion for learning as I have.

2 things significant have happened to me over the past year - 1 is that I went through a Jewish conversion and 2 is that I got excepted into grad school to get my MSW. I am very grateful to become an official part of the Jewish community, history, etc. I am also relieved that the process is complete. I have wanted to go to grad school to get my MSW for over 6 years and with the support of my husband & friends I will start in January 2018. This will affect my future as I will be totally changing my career of 17+ years.

This past year I learned to accept the new me, a widow after 56 years of marriage and friendship

My husband had an unexpected quadruple bypass on Christmas Eve last year. He was hospitalized for a week and my sister-in-law and I drove him home on January 1 to start his recovery. He had a truly amazing recovery, walking in the Women's March three weeks to the day after his surgery. His life was pretty much back to normal by April. The experience of accompanying him on his journey of recovery was challenging and hard work in the middle of a cold Alaskan winter. However, in the end we feel closer to each other and agreed that our connection has deepened. I am very grateful that he had this needed surgery before anything more serious happened.

I was installed as 1st VP of the Northeast District of Women of Reform Judaism. I am honored, and there are times I feel ready, and at times I feel stretched. The amount of responsibility pushes the envelope of volunteerism. There are times I feel I am being ordered to deliver. Mostly, I feel surrounded by supportive 'sisters'. I also went to Israel on a WRJ women's mission. Going with a group of like minded women was inspiring, and very different from the family trip we took 17 years prior to this visit. I had many wonderful experiences, including having an Aliyah with Women of the Wall.

My significant experience is the making of a film this past year. I am grateful for the opportunity to stretch myself and learn new skills but I am so glad its over. I do have some resentment. Things did not go the way I had hoped and a few powerful events happened that have made me sad and a bit bitter. I am a doer and someone who likes getting things done on time and under budget...its how I make my living...it was really hard to work with someone who is a procrastinator and inpatient at the same time. Someone who gets in their own way and, in the end, probably ruined any opportunities for this film because they sabotage it. It is so very hard...very hard to let go... to be proud that I came through 100% on my end and to watch all that hard work go to waste. I am indeed looking forward to starting fresh. I wish I was a better person and just could let this go.

I would have to say the Presidential election. What could be more significant on a macro level? Like many others, it affected me deeply. After the initial disbelief and shock, came anger, sadness, worry, anxiety and more. This is an ongoing "experience" as much of the good that was accomplished in the last 8 years is being dismantled, as hate and nationalism become more vocal and public, while social justice falls by the wayside.

I realized that I was entering into menopause. I was utterly in shock at first when my blood work revealed that I was no longer producing any hormones. I realized that women (and our culture at large) does not discuss this profound change of life in ALL women. How is this possible??!! This made me angry. My Western doctor immediately prescribed HRT. The bioidenticals that she prescribed were toxic to my body. I felt inspired