caminante haciendo camino
auld lang syne
2003-12-31 | 10:54 p.m.

Well, this is it. The obligatory end-of-one-year-beginning-of-another journal entry. Thereís one of these in every journal Iíve kept since sometime in junior high, the only difference is that this year itís here. It borders on cliche, I know. But what can I say. I feel unfinished if I canít review the year past and contemplate the one to come, and write it all down in a series of have-doneís and will-doís.

First, the year past. I turned 31 this year. As someone said, I am now firmly entrenched in my 30s. That was alright. Iím enjoying my 30s. I feel as if Iíve come into my own, so to speak, in a number of ways.

The highlight of the year was February 4th. Rianna was born. Sheís amazing. Isnít it incredible how this life that didnít exist before suddenly does, and you find this love inside, that also didnít exist before, and it does in quantities and depths that you didnít even know possible? I guess part of what has surprised me about being an aunt is this ability that my heart apparently has of generating boundless love for one beautiful little girl, without in any way diminishing the love I feel for others. Mothers know this well, Iím sure. But I had never realized it until Rianna was born. And, it just makes me wonder, why we so jealously guard our love when we are apparently able to love more, the more we care to love. Itís as if weíre afraid that too much love given will somehow result in dangerously low reservoirs, when in fact, more love given actually results in generating more love. Ok, these ramblings really donít have anything to do with my year-in-review. Where was I? Ah, yes, 2003 . . .

The lowlight was definitely the war and this administrationís insistence on a foreign policy based on big sticks, ultimatums, and an inflated sense of self. But, itís new yearís eve . . . itís supposed to be happy and not really the time for political debates . . . so Iíll only say that the decision to go to war, the manner in which it was done, and the quagmire that has resulted are definitely the low points of the year, not only for me as an individual, but for us as a nation.

In between the high and the low . . . There were friends made . . . those wonderful soupers and especially the P&Fers who have offered support and freely shared of themselves; MaryO, who was a gift; a santa named Heather; Jeff who made my first gig as a lawyer better than I could have hoped for, and his wife, Laura; Kelly, my co-redhead; MM, who confounds and amuses me almost daily; Tom, an old friend that I reconnected with this year Ė he has more in him than he realizes and Iím lucky to count him as a friend.

There were also friends lost, or at least distanced . . . The Chicago Melissa, I miss her amazingly sharp mind packaged to look like a ditzy blonde; but Iím happy that sheís so happy in her new city. Chicagoís a lucky place to get her. Jeff and Laura, who bought their first home in California. The folks in Judge Mís chambers . . . I miss them even if theyíre just one floor down.

There was RC. It was probably doomed to failure from the start. And, really, it was much more my fault than it was his. He was a good man. And he wanted it to work. MM says Iím an intellectual snob. Sheís probably right. But I simply couldnít see myself perpetually limiting or defining my vocabulary in order to maintain a conversation. And, really, by the time youíre 30, there is absolutely no justifiable reason for you not to have ever participated in the electoral process. Finding out that he was not, and had never been, registered to vote was the deal breaker. But even though it did not work out, my short-lived involvement with RC was significant in that it was my first relationship initiated online. A barrier of sorts that I allowed myself to breach.

Career-wise, 2003 was a good year. I was proud of the work I did for Judge M. It was both challenging and rewarding. And Judge Mís faith in my ability, his confidence in my potential, and his unswerving certainty that my career will yield great things meant more than I can possibly express. To have a man such as him, who has had such a distinguished career as a lawyer and a jurist, and who has proven himself to be a person of honor and wisdom, express such confidence in you cannot but inspire you to strive each day to be worthy of such praise.

After a great year with Judge M, I started work for Judge C in September. Although entirely different, the experience is proving to be a positive one. I will undoubtedly learn much and be a better lawyer because of the opportunity to work under Judge C.

Other personal high points of the past year include . . . losing 10 pounds and, even more importantly, eating right (most of the time) and exercising regularly (or, at least, with greater regularity than in the past), bellydancing, great reads (high on the list would be "Memoirs of a Geisha," "The DaVinci Code," "To Kill a Mockingbird" (again), "Bel Canto," "Promiscuities," and too many more to list), discovering the feminine divine, trips to Disneyland and San Francisco, and the current foray into online journaling.

Thatís 2003 in a nutshell. For 2004, Iíll simply say, that Iím expecting great things. I can say that with confidence, because I always expect greatness . . . from myself and from others. Sure, Iím sometimes disappointed, both in myself and in others. But Iíd much rather set the bar high and fall short of the mark, than to expect little and to live with unrealized potential. So Iím an optimist, sue me.

And, although it pains my Type A personality, Iíll not write out a list of resolutions for the new year. I think, perhaps, that my resolutions of the past have been too limiting. So, instead, Iíll greet the new year with thanks for the one nearly gone, and with hope for the one to come.

Excuse me now while I go ďdrink a cup of kindness yet for times gone byĒ or something like that. Happy New Year, everyone!

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