My ACTUAL Christmas Update :)

Last year I bemoaned the fact that my life is in many ways unchanging. I worked at the same job, lived in the same house, and had my well-worn routines in life. No longer.

I have coined 2013 as “the year of adulthood” for me. I find myself repeatedly asking, “What would an adult do?” when making decisions. A giant portion of my year was spent praying about my job situation. I enjoyed my job as an occupational therapist helping stroke patients, but it did not provide benefits and the hours were becoming less guaranteed, so I began the job hunt. I searched far and near and ended up scoring a fantastic full time job working in NICU and pediatrics of all kinds. I love that this job relies on my strong sensory processing knowledge base and keeps me on my toes. Kids come to the hospital for everything from prematurity to cancer to heart surgery to epilepsy to falling off the monkey bars and breaking their arms. It’s a challenge to make therapy into play, but if I’m doing my job well, the kids just think they’re playing, they don’t realize they are getting stronger or practicing difficult skills! The patient population, coworkers, and benefits (hello, adulthood!) have all been a blessing.

Also, although I technically live in the same house, we got new carpet this summer so I moved out of and into my own house. I’m counting that as a major change since I had to play a game of “packing Tetris” and fit my entire bedroom into my bathroom. As a child of the 80’s, I had no trouble with this having logged dozens of Tetris hours in my youth!

Other adult-ish decisions:

  • I go to bed on time knowing that I’ll be a cranky mess if I don’t!
  • I attended a financial planning class where I had to budget, calculate necessary numbers for retirement, and let my teacher peer into my check book.
  • I paid off all debts! The primary focus of the financial course was debt reduction. So I got an A!
  • I’ve made healthy decisions. A few years ago I went on a hike with some friends and didn’t enjoy it at all. I felt tired and out of breath right at the start. Since then I’ve been on a lengthy path toward health. Trying new recipes, watching what I eat, and exercising have become routines.
  • I eat fiber. I’ll leave it at that…
  • My friend, Tracy, can make me do crazy things. I felt like I had plateaued in exercise and health last summer and she suggested I should take up running. She even offered to fly down and run my first 5K race with me last November. Race day arrived and I ran the entire 3.1 miles and, at that point, it was the longest I’d ever run! I got hooked on the feeling of accomplishment and the joy of crossing the finish line and I am now in training for a half marathon (13.1 miles) which takes place in February 2014! Planning ahead and avoiding injury are both very adult-ish undertakings!
  • I continue to blog and process life at www.IThinkonPaper.com. I think that writing is how I view life the best and I feel healthiest when I am regularly able to write. I post every few days and appreciate comments and feedback! I also have a few other writing projects in the works and meet with my editor, Abby, most Wednesdays to keep hammering away at them!
  • I seek balance in life. I have long shifts at the hospital and not much time after I get home before I need to be an adult and go to bed to do it again the next day. I don’t want to be so task-oriented that my relationships suffer. I want my life to be hospitable, to have room for the unplanned, and to be inviting to others.
  • I get my Christmas Letters out early! Thanks for reading, friends! I wish you the merriest of Christmases and that this would be a time to renew the excited little kid in each of you!

Love, Kelly

Elf on the shelf, pointsettia

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