Dear 2013 – you can wrap up any moment now. I am ready for 2014. At present, I am dreaming of simple pleasures like folding laundry, taking a hot shower and sitting at my new desk to work. I want to look at my home calendar and verify W’s next Clubfoot follow up appointment at Sick Kids before putting on his Ponseti braces for bed. None of these things are possible today.
To recap 2013 quickly: it’s been a very challenging year. On top of the intense pace of our lives, our tiny house was folded during the epic Toronto rainfall in the summer. We’ve spent countless hours gutting and renovating our basement post flood. Insurance doesn’t cover “grey water” damage. You can imagine my vocabulary of four letter words. The basement also acts as my home office, thus professionally, I was out of a work space, samples and more. Throw in the regular illness schedule, some added joy of pneumonia (pick a Russell, we were all so sick), gobs of snot, ear infections, a little boy starting school and lots of busy busy family things. What kept me going was the idea of Christmas. I kept telling everyone who asked that my idea of holiday plans included being in my PJs with the kids, relaxed and warm, in my own home. “Just make it to Dec 21st” I kept telling myself. It was marked on the calendar.
On December 21st came. There was an ice storm in the forecast and a long anticipated family event cancelled. I was called away from a last minute dinner party nearby to come home urgently. A power line was on fire, the ice storm was setting in and we would have to evacuate. Fire trucks showed up and watched the ice storm put out the fire. Assurances were made that Toronto Hydro would be on this. That was the last of anything larger than a garbage truck coming down our street to offer a service – no salt trucks, snow plows, hydro trucks, nothing.
For 120 hours, in a Canadian winter, our little street has been without power. We thankful to be bunking in with family. Many neighbors are enduring the cold and keeping the area safe. While the city gets back to normal, our street remains a final pocket without service. I won’t touch on the political mess that all of this is. Needless to say, I am ready for 2013 to be done. Panic hits about things big and small. I have only a day’s clothes with me – I keep hoping this won’t last any longer. But each morning that I go back home and change into ice cold clothes, I get upset. What about my time to organize my new office space? My time to work on Clubfoot projects that mean so much to me. Scrap fitness and healthy eating, stress feel like it is invading every cell of my body.
Of course, through all of this adversity there are many wonderful moments, people and things. I feel tremendously fortunate to have the family, friends and neighbors that are in my life. Thank you, thank you and thank you. Your endless support, gestures, kind words and more have puled us through the gong show of 2013. Our family has spent more time together than ever. Our street and community are now stronger and more vocal than ever. I will squeeze in a run on the icy and un-plowed streets, if I am lucky dance away in a cardio hip hop class and maybe even a trip to the gym. My expense report will get done. 2014 is almost here and it can only get better.