Friday, 4 January 2008

2007 - The Year in Review

So, here it is, January 4th, 2008. Christmas, New Year's and my Birthday are all good and over with and a new day has dawned. Time to look back and see what happened in 2007.

So, what DID happen in 2007?? In a lot of ways, to me at least, 2007 seemed like the year of the wait. I know this isn't exactly true, but because of my work situation it sure seems like it. I've been waiting since last February to find out what permanent position I'm going to be getting within the T.T.C. since I can't drive a bus any more, and so far I have heard nothing. Instead, they've given me a job that's basically to sit in one spot and collect change. Apparently I'm a panhandler in training. Eventually the powers that be will have to officially make me a collector or a subway driver or something, but so far, I've yet to hear what their plans might be. I think they're waiting it out too, hoping I'll get fed up and either return to bus driving or quit the company. So far, it's been a big stalemate, but hey, as long as I've got a steady paycheque I guess I can't complain too much.

So anyway, let's think of what happened this year of note. First off, last January I was unable to work at all and weighed about 60 poounds more than I do now since all I was doing was sitting on my couch taking drugs for months to try and heal up my back. Since then, at least I managed to get back to work in some capacity and drop all that extra weight. My back and knee still hurt constantly, but at least it's better than it was and I can move and do stuff. I couldn't even pick up a 10 pound object from the floor when 2007 began, and now I'm almost as capable as I ever was, albeit in a lot more pain. So in my eyes that is an improvement.

In April my wife and I decided to get a cat. Well, rather she decided to get a cat and I decided not to argue too much. Although he was a huge pain in the ass at first I eventually started to like having him around. We named him Ramble after the Led Zeppelin song "Ramble On" and he's usually good for a laugh.

I attended my first Transformers convention this year and met Michael Bell, voice of Prowl, Duke and various other beloved cartoon characters from the 80's. That might not mean much to most but it was a good day for me. Of course 2 things since then have diminished my love of transformers a great deal. The first was the live action movie. While it was interesting, it didn't make me more of a fan by any means.

The second has to do with another thing that happened which I'll get to in a minute

Perhaps the most life-altering thing to happen to me in 2007 was meeting a teenage girl name Jessica who jumped into my life and sort of got herself adopted into my family before we'd turned around twice. I never thought I'd be a "parent" and now all the sudden my wife and I have ourselves a teenager! Well of course she's not really adopted, but she's a part of our crew. Why we still talkin' about this? Jessica rules!

In a somewhat related incident that I won't get into here, I also lost a friend that has been in and out of my life over the last ten years. I couldn't put up with his behaviour any more, as it was increasingly erratic and troublesome. He started becoming more and more, well, evil...for lack of a better word. It was no suprise, and he's been down the road he's taking a lot of times in the past, but at least I'm finally quit of watching his destructive behaviour. I'd walked out on him several times in the past and always felt bad about it previously, even though his behaviour was unconscienceable. This time, however, he got fed up with me "interfering" with his plots and decided himself that I was no longer welcome around him. It was a huge relief for me and I've now washed my hands of him forever. It's a fairly major change, but one that was quite easy for me to accept. My only regret is that he still has several people I care about under his sway who are hurting themselves by associating with him. When we were friends I could keep an eye on them and counter some of his bad influence. Now I cannot. I just hope that they figure it out for themselves eventually and aren't too damaged by following him on his path. I know that sounds melodramatic but one only has to look at the history of his previous obsessions to see that it is not. Those who do not learn from their mistakes are doomed to repeat them, often at great cost.

Oh, incidentally, he was also my transformers buddy and thus my love of transformers is severly diminished since our falling out. I just want to distance myself from him as much as possible. I'm sure in time I'll get over it.

Also in 2007, for the second time in my 4 year marriage I was actually becoming very worried that things were going to fall apart. Cristal (my wife) and I were drifting apart like mad over last winter and spring, even into the summertime. We started having problems for two reasons. One was my moodiness, due to the whole constant pain and drug use and inability to do many of the things I was used to doing. I started regressing into myself a lot and that drove a wedge between us. The second reason was that my wife got more and more wrapped up in her career and her interests and suddenly I was not as included as I thought I should be. It made for several weeks where we hardly saw or spoke to each other, although we were usually always civil and friendly when we did speak. It was just sort of living with a stranger...a roommate or something.

Well, luckily we reconnected at least somewhat come late summer and fall and things are looking up, although we don't have the same dynamic that we used to. I guess all relationships change over time and that's something I will just have to deal with over the course of my life. In any case, I think we're good now. There's no lack of love, just lack of things in common, and that can be overcome by shared experiences...

All in all, it's been one of those years. Some good, some bad, and a lot of frustration. I'm not the sort of person who likes to sit around and wait for change when things are out of my control...I prefer to make change. In this case however, I really have to wait or give up. For now, I'll wait and be hopeful that the new year will bring change, particularly in my work life. All I can do is carry on like the wayward son that I am.

In brief - some good:

Gained a new and excellent friend
Rekindled my love of playing guitar
joined the 21st century with an iPod of my very own
lost 60 pounds

some bad:

lost a friend (but made a great trade)
did the most unfufilling job imaginable for most of the year
struggled to make ends meet far too often
had a rocky relationship for a good part of the year

And that's about all the thought I care to put into 2007. Bring on the new year. I can take it.