Monday, February 13, 2017

So What's a Few Years Between Posts?

A few years have passed since my last post. I am the same person, with the same interests. My life is vastly different, in a good way.

Since my last post:

-Belle and I got married!
-We went to the Bahamas, our first visit to a foreign country together!
-We moved into our first apartment together
-We watched ever episode of Doctor Who
-Belle completed her Master of Arts in Teaching degree and got her first teaching job
-We got our second apartment to be closer to said teaching job
-Tiny Dog got a sister - Boo Bear!
-I left the job I last mentioned for a non-commission, salaried job on the trading floor (it's a lot nerdier than the trading floors shown in 80s and 90s movies)
-We bought a house!
-We drove to Canada, and stayed at the wonderful Ainsley House Bed and Breakfast (which I'm devastated to find out is closed!)
-A health problem of my worsened, but I rose to the challenge
-Belle started working at a closer school
-We remodeled the entire house including:
-Basement Bathroom (with full concrete rough-in)
-Basement Bedroom
-New flooring everywhere except the kitchen and dining room
-Removed wood from walls
-Refinished hardwood floor and banister
-Nursery
-We had a baby boy!
-Belle took some time off from teaching to be with the baby and take care of her mom through some health problems
-I learned about sleep agility and the importance of having it as a parent
-We got a new cat the same age as our boy, an old cat died, another went back to be with her girl, and I adopted a tiny kitten that was actually 8 years old
-Tiny dog went to live with her grandparents because mobile children sort of stress her out
-Belle ran for Congress and garnered substantial support against a well-funded incumbent with virtually no budget
-We traveled to Tybee Island (a suprise vacation I threw for Belle)
-We had another baby boy
-We've been to Disney World twice, once for the first birthday of each little guy
-I started an MBA program
-I was promoted at work and am now responsible for hundreds of people and a big chunk of business
-I have two friends who have published novels
-Belle is a theatre teacher at a good school, and I get to help build multiple sets per year
-Belle and I went to New York City and saw HAMILTON on Broadway, as well as The Front Page, In Transit (the first all acapella musical on Broadway), and a taping of Late Night with Stephen Colbert
-Oh, David Letterman retired and was ultimately replaced by Stephen Colbert; Jimmy Fallon is amazing and replaced Jay Leno, and John Stewart retired and the Daily Show is now hosted by Trevor Noah
-Uh... a reality TV "personality" was elected president, despite my best efforts
-Belle graduates with an Ed Specialist degree in school Administration in May, and I'll graduate with my MBA
-Disney bought LucasFilm from George Lucas
-Not one, but two Star Wars movies have come out and both are amazing
-We went to a lot of weddings, including the Worst Wedding
-My grandpa, Belle's grandma, Alan Rickman, and Carrie Fisher died... along with over 100 other people who led and inspired us... in the same year the reality TV star was elected president. 2016 will not be missed.
-Somewhere in there we both actually bought new cars
-I'm an uncle now, too, as of last weekend!
-I realized that MEAL is a lost window into my thoughts early in our relationship. Belle and I will celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary this October.
-I've spent the last year studying French, and while I have a lot to learn I can have basic conversations and read le Monde for business news.

Throughout these years, I have continued in my quest to be a better person and make the world a better place. I am more confident, due entirely to Belle's influence. Her support gave me the courage to take charge of my life, start the MBA program, develop some real goals for myself, and move into management at my firm. I have learned a great deal about myself during the process, including the myriad ways in which I fall short as a human being. It helps to know before you try to fix it.

The world is a scarier, more uncertain place than it was at the beginning of this decade. Progressive populism lost out in 2016, and an angry nativist populism won. Fascism, racism, and sexism were never entirely gone, but now they hold their heads high in public where they once lurked in the shadows. Many are afraid, but people are standing up against tyranny, too.

Deep down, I always thought I would get married, we'd find good jobs, and I'd eventually settle down into a safe and stable life. If there is one thing I have learned in the last seven years, it's that safety is an illusion. Stability is only a few steps away from chaos.

Change is constant. The most important skill in life-economically, personally, spiritually- is the ability to navigate that change. Change is life. Stagnation is death.

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