reflection · Uncategorized

2015: A Good Year In Which Bad Things Happened


This morning, as I walked Smarty in the cold, frosty air, I reflected on 2015 and found myself puzzled. My overall impression was that it was a good year, a year of new adventures and fun discoveries. And yet so many bad things happened that I don’t see how I can feel positive about it! Here’s a list of the bad:

  1. In February, my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to have a mastectomy. She’d already been through so much the previous year with constant, disabling pain from spinal stenosis and a neck and a back surgery. She hadn’t even had time to recover fully when she got hit with the breast cancer thing. I hated that she had to go through that and I hated that I couldn’t be there to support her more. An hour drive is a lot for someone with a lot of responsibilities at home and chronic fatigue. My mom understands that but I still feel guilty.
  2. In March, our beloved dog Baby developed sudden paralysis of her hind quarters. I took her for a walk on a Monday morning and everything seemed normal but, when I came home that afternoon, she could barely walk. By Thursday, she was so paralyzed that we felt we had no choice but have her put to sleep. It was the hardest thing we’ve ever been through. Don and I felt we had to be there in her final moments but it’s something that still haunts me. I was her mom and she trusted me and I helped hold her down so someone could inject her with a lethal dose of anesthesia. That can mess with your mind. And the quiet in the house after she was gone, the empty spot in the bed where she used to lay…it was unbearable.
  3. In April, Michael (my oldest son) got rear-ended on his way to school. He wasn’t critically injured but his whiplash injuries kept him seeing a chiropractor, massage therapist, sports medicine doctor and physical therapist until early December, when he decided that he’d had enough, even though he still has clicking in his shoulders and some stiffness and pain. His car was totaled and he and I had to share a care for several months while we waited for the insurance to pay for a replacement. He was a world record weightlifter and has missed out on an entire year of competition because of the accident.
  4. We realized that the $1,500 we paid for Daniel to be on a select baseball team was a complete waste. The coach was a jerk and Daniel didn’t get to play his position because of politics. The season was miserable for all of us and, as we later discovered, everyone else on the team too.
  5. Summer was too long and way, way too hot. It sucked.
  6. My metabolic disorder reared its ugly head again and I rapidly gained weight and had to buy a size of pants that I said I would never wear again. It’s very depressing.
  7. I found out I’m allergic to a whole bunch of foods – eggs, almonds, pineapple, banana, soy, spelt, sugar, hazelnuts and walnuts – and meal planning and prep (already my hardest job) became infinitely more difficult.
  8. Throughout the month of December, I felt all the progress I’d made toward feeling better slip away. I felt as horrible over Christmas as I always used to.
  9. I didn’t even come close to meeting my goals for the year. I didn’t finish my course in herbalism, even though I only have four assignments left.

All that sucked and yet there was so much to make the year good.

There was Smarty, the elderly gentleman dog we adopted from the shelter a few weeks after Baby died. He has his issues but he brings sunshine to every day.


There were squirrel friends to make me smile.


The squirrels were so friendly this year. We usually have one or two that are tame and friendly but they all were this year. Just try having a bad day with a squirrel reaching up to put its “hand” on your knee while it reaches to take a peanut out of your hand. It just melts your heart!

There were our beloved kitties too, but this post is already getting too long. I’ll have a kitty appreciation post another day. 🙂

There was Daniel’s second baseball team with nice coaches and kids. They may not have won many games but we are grateful we could be part of the Saw Miller family. It was a great bunch of kids and parents.

There was hearing my mom tell about going out to get things done. Her neck and back surgeries were successful and she received a diagnosis of fibromyalgia so she is able to get pain meds and, for the first time in years, can do things out in her yard and around the house. She recovered from the mastectomy remarkably well.

There was the new journey of learning more about photography. I bought my first non-point and shoot camera in January of last year and learning how to use it and joining photo challenges made the year feel like an exciting journey. And through that journey of photography and blogging, came you, my blogging friends. I’ve greatly enjoyed connecting with you and I value that connection. Thank you for being part of my year!


19 thoughts on “2015: A Good Year In Which Bad Things Happened

  1. I’m glad you ended with writing about your joys and highlights in 2015. I think my list of negatives would be longer than yours. Ha ha! Wonderful that your mom is doing so well. Cheers to 2016!

  2. When my idea for therapy squirrels finally becomes accepted medial practice, the AMA will know exactly those first happy-making pioneers. I know it would make my year if even once one of my squirrels came up to me for food. Here’s hoping 2016 will be an even better year for you, Trisha!

  3. As you say, A Good Year but with bad things happening.

    Sometimes I think we all need to sit down and ‘write the list’ of all that’s happened in recent times. It makes up thankful for the good and appreciate the end of the bad.

    Life is like a roller-coaster for all of us and I’m always thankful to have my blogging friends to share the highs and lows.

    So here’s to a Happy New Year and hopefully better health for your family, especially for your Mom. She’s had a hard time lately, but at least she’s through the worst.

    What would we do without the ‘squirrels’ in life. (well, Doves in mine). They remind us of the simple things that bring joy into our lives and to which we should celebrate and give thanks.

    1. So true! Our little visitors bring such joy and it’s so fun that we can share that with others via blogging.

      Here’s to a healthier, happier (and accident-free) year for you, Vicki!

      BTW, I enjoyed your photos from your Christmas in the countryside but somehow got my iPad all jammed up while trying to comment. It’s interesting to see the landscape there as it’s so completely different from here.

  4. I remember reading about some of those bad things that happened, it’s so good that amidst it all, you still find and feel overall that it was a good year. I was struggling over here yesterday morning as I was reflecting on the past year, feeling that I had a pretty rough year overall, it’s been the hardest year since I went through my divorce 5 years ago. But in the end, I have much to be grateful for and much to look forward to in the coming year.
    I love the frost on the pine in the photo you shared, we had fog here the other day and because of the cold temps it flocked all the trees, it was so magical!
    I also love that photo of Smarty, what a happy sweet face he has! ❤

      1. Thanks, I hope so too! I know it’s all about perspective and I usually do really well with that, just sometimes it all piles up ya know? 😉
        Speaking of “surprises of the good kind” – I am very much looking forward to meeting my new little surprise granddaughter who will be arriving in 2016 – only about a month away now actually! We’re not quite ready for her yet though, still have lots to do here, but it’s coming together little by little and now that Christmas has passed we can focus a bit more. I’m putting together a baby shower for her for this upcoming weekend, hopefully after that we’ll feel more prepared. Gosh, time flies…

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