As 2012 turned to 2013, I re-evaluated what goals i’d hit on in 2012, and which I had yet to accomplish. It’s a constant process, and it’s stellar to see it unfold. However, it’s true that I’ve never been about the new-year’s aspect of new years resolutions, and the reality is, I never hit up any goals for 2013.

So, instead of the typical new year benchmark . . . I’m using my birthday!

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Goals for my twenty-second year:

  • Get healthy. [It’s vague, it encompasses a lot of things, but is it ever relevant right now.]
  • Walk a 10K race. [Last year, wouldn’t have been a big thing. This year, after the asthma shenanigans and the anemia shenanigans, I’m starting from zero. And that’s scary–however, if it doesn’t scare you, it doesn’t change you.]
  • Active choices: Make them.
  • Visit new places near and far.
  • Pass anatomy.
  • Create more. [Writing, music, video: it all counts.]
  • Journal (at least) weekly.
  • Be more mindful–focus on the present.
  • Abandon apathy. [Special relevance in regard to asthma/sinus care, but also everything].
  • Learn more about learning more.
  • Trust the process.
  • Continue to recognize the Good Things.

 

i’m one year older now since the last time i saw you / in case you wanna know, i’m about to say what i’m up to […] / some peace of mind is what i want, but that will be the day.

[…] searching for the energy and the time to make a change / to make a change in my life / instead of watching it pass by / get something done while i’m alive.

i’m twenty two / don’t know what i’m supposed to do / or how to be / to get some more out of me. […]

afraid that i will be weak forever / i can’t stay in this shape any longer […] / i’ve been going with the flow for too long now / this must end / running ’round in circles / i’ve been so far from myself / i try to activate myself the best i can / so boredom won’t catch up with me / i got my daily plan.

twenty two, millencolin

At the beginning of January, I wrote a list of goals for 2012. As the year closes off, let’s take a look at these again and see how I did

Small things

  • Focus on the good things.

I think I did this one pretty well :]. It’s pretty un-specific, but it’s clearly smattered across the last year of this blog.

  • Complete the onehundredpushups program and not derail. Yes, I am doing girly push-ups. It is better than no push-ups.  If all goes well, this will be completed by the end of January.

Unsuccessful. I think I got up to 50 and then derailed.

  • Stop making Saturday and Sunday the exception:
    • the weekend is not an excuse to only brush my teeth once a day instead of twice
    • it is not an excuse to forgo a workout or two
    • and it is not a cop out for eating all kinds of random food.

Can you say derailed. Says the girl who has not legitimately worked out for over a month, has derailed on the twice-daily weekend brushing-of-teeth [once always. Twice not so much.] and is having cookie-dough hot chocolate for breakfast at 11 am?

  • Become more reliable at hitting up the cardio workouts 45 minutes/day, 5 days/week.

See workout explanation from previous point.

  • Read over the day’s notes when I get home from school and make study notes as the term goes on, because it will make finals suck less.

Considering 2012 featured the failing of anatomy in the spring, dropping two classes in Fall term, and possibly sneaking by with a D in social psychology [and a currently unknown in the anatomy repeat] this . . . might have been helpful.

Okay, let’s move on to the bigger things

Bigger things

  • Health advocacy: do new things, reach beyond what I’ve already been doing in some way.  [Maybe that’s doing more races sporting the Team Asthma gear, maybe that’s trying to see if volunteering at asthma camp will work this year, maybe that’s giving my time and my own body for research if I’m eligible.  It could be a lot of things, or all of these things].

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! This happened in ways I would have never believed: Quebec City for the World Congress of Asthma, the Stanford University Medicine-X conference . . . and I might possibly have some new goodness with the Asthma Society of Canada rolling out in the near future.  My friends and I also participated in the Canadian Diabetes Association 10K, and I launched the Kerri Kicks Asthma CanadaHelps page.  I also started working on a couple new asthma advocacy related projects, The Forward Project which needs some realignment, and the Living With Asthma Twitter chat which will be live again in January.

  • Actually walk a half marathon.  I’ve been saying I’m going to do one for about two years, so let’s make 2012 the year pending all goes as planned.

No bueno. I have been saying this half marathon thing since 2009 or 2010, and it still scares me, probably why I haven’t done it yet.

  • Work with others to help them realize their own potential, be a part of that ripple effect.

So much goodness. This one has been a plethora of little things. Its actually caused me to reach out of my comfort zone to people I haven’t spoken with in several years over Facebook to provide them with resources on things. It’s

  • Figure out where I’m at with God.

More lost than ever, but learning more at the same time.

I tried this twice and lasted one or two days respectively. Continuity is not my strength.

  • Hesitate less, do more.

YES. Airplanes. Road trip. Internet “strangers” who are among my best friends.  I think the prime example of this one is going to California for Medicine-X.

I fully expect to not accomplish all of these, and if I don’t, they’ll transfer into 2013.  If I do, then I’ll be golden.

I didn’t accomplish everything, but I definitely accomplished more different things than expected!  And, I’m 3/6 for the big things, which is pretty phenomenal.

This I am very okay with.

hello, good morning, how ya do? what makes your rising sun so new? i could use a fresh beginning, too . . . all of my regrets are nothing new.

[…] i’m dying to breathe in these abundant skies.

hello, good morning, how ya been? yesterday left, my head kicked in. i never, never thought that i would fall like that, never knew that i could hurt this bad.

i’m learning to breathe, i’m learning to crawl […]

learning to breathe, switchfoot

 

I will be completely honest that I have been very much out of the groove since the beginning of September. At first, I blamed it on readjusting to the new routine of school. Then I was crazy busy, and blamed that. Then I went to California. And we all know what happened in California [and, unfortunatley, did not stay in California].

I’m not intending for this to be a bitchfest post. I’m intending it to be an accountability point. While it is one thing that two or three weeks ago, doing stairs was still really hard, I am slowly getting back to where I want to be. The fact that I haven’t been working out lately prior to the asthma exacerbation is nothing’s fault but my own. I am the one who makes those choices, and I have not been making those choices. So, it is going to be doubly hard to get back to doing what I know I need to be doing exercise-wise because I’ve probably already lost a fair amount of where I was at the beginning of September from simply not being intentional. Yes, I’ve been busy, and yes, recently I’ve been sick. The latter is a reason . . . the former is an excuse.

Since I lost my Fitbit [seriously. It was honestly super depressing when I discovered it was MIA. The people at Fitbit are awesome and are sending me a complimentary replacement], and am constantly in need of some kind of motivation, I joined MeYou Health’s Daily Challenge site–I’d love for you to join me! I receive simple challenges every day to motivate me towards just making one small choice that . . . when added up . . . can make a big difference. It also helps with that intentionality bit by asking a few questions to help evaluate your current wellness–I’m hovering at 80%, likely because of some nutrition and physical activity issues, and dipped down today because I have been feeling stressed this weekend (see also: Darwin paper). The questions are simple, but really make me realize how I am feeling about things, which is awesome.

I get things narrowed-down in a nice little screen like this, helping me to see what I need to work on.  Emotional health dropped like 19 points I think just due to the stress factor. The physical health thing is quite obvious due to my state of physical activity and asthma lately.

Wellbeing Scores

The healthy behaviours bit, let us explore that a bit more:

Healthy Behaviour Score

Each domain can be outlined like this, giving some concrete ways of how to improve health in the determined area that might need some work. So, once again, this one is all about those little choices that add up . . . and the little choices that are dragging me down in some of the other domains adding up.

I know part of the exercise aversion is that I’m scared of two things, one being that I won’t feel good while doing it [which is basically a given at this point that it will be harder to breathe than usual] and two being that I’ll make myself sick again [which is, at this point, unlikely I would hope, but it comes with the package deal of having a wicked exacerbation, apparently]. The only way to crush those feelings though . . . is to try it.

Goals for the week:

  • Get rolling on the backpack snacks again.
  • Do what it takes to get more intentional about the nutrition on the whole [I might try the picture-taking method].
  • Give exercising a go again–take it slow, but try. Even if I make it ten minutes on the bike, that is much better than nothing.

 

i got my scars, i been to hell and back again. born for the blue skies, we’ll survive the rain. born for the sunrise, we’ll survive the pain.

we’re singing wait it’s not over now, we’ve been down but we’ve never been out . . .

we found a way out, the city takes everything it can. but outside the crowds, i can feel my lungs again. . .

dark horses, switchfoot

last week some are living for nothing but deadlines, with my deadbeat sky but this town doesn’t look the same tonight. these dreams started singing to me out of nowhere, and in all my life i don’t know that i ever felt so alive, alive.

here we are now with the falling sky and the rain, we’re awakening.  here we are now with the desparate youth in pain, we’re awakiening, maybe it’s called ambition, but you’re been talking in your sleep, about a dream, we’re awakening.

i wanna wake up kicking and screaming, i wanna know that my heart’s still beating, it’s beating, i’m bleeding.  i wanna wake up kicking and screaming, i wanna live like i know what i’m leaving, i wanna know that my heart’s still beating, it’s beating, it’s beating, it’s beating, i’m bleeding.

awakening, switchfoot

2012 . . . I want to own you.  I want 2012 to be full of awakening, and continuing to move forward, push beyond, be alive.

I want to spend this year being full of “good things”, to quote Jay, one of my profs last term.  It’s written on my whiteboard in huge letters right now, and I plan to surround it with smaller words of other good things throughout the year.  Stepping back and seeing what is good.  It’s a simple, short and sweet motivation with a big message.

So what does this mean for the year?  Focus on the good things, the good choices.  It means not ignoring the good things that seem small and just seeing them as good things.  It means setting short term goals that lead to long term goals.  It means moving forward and sharing this passion and perspective with others.

It means working harder at accomplishing what I’ve set out to accomplish.

Small things

  • Focus on the good things.
  • Complete the onehundredpushups program and not derail. Yes, I am doing girly push-ups. It is better than no push-ups.  If all goes well, this will be completed by the end of January.
  • Stop making Saturday and Sunday the exception: 
    • the weekend is not an excuse to only brush my teeth once a day instead of twice
    • it is not an excuse to forgo a workout or two
    • and it is not a cop out for eating all kinds of random food.
  • Become more reliable at hitting up the cardio workouts 45 minutes/day, 5 days/week.
  • Read over the day’s notes when I get home from school and make study notes as the term goes on, because it will make finals suck less.

Bigger things

  • Health advocacy: do new things, reach beyond what I’ve already been doing in some way.  [Maybe that’s doing more races sporting the Team Asthma gear, maybe that’s trying to see if volunteering at asthma camp will work this year, maybe that’s giving my time and my own body for research if I’m eligible.  It could be a lot of things, or all of these things].
  • Actually walk a half marathon.  I’ve been saying I’m going to do one for about two years, so let’s make 2012 the year pending all goes as planned.
  • Work with others to help them realize their own potential, be a part of that ripple effect.
  • Figure out where I’m at with God.
  • Make another attempt at the 365 project.
  • Hesitate less, do more.

I fully expect to not accomplish all of these, and if I don’t, they’ll transfer into 2013.  If I do, then I’ll be golden.

I am awake. 2012 . . . let’s go.

The past is important in telling our stories, to understand where we’re at and why we’re there.

But tonight, I am not celebrating what’s ending . . . i am celebrating what is coming.  I don’t “do” new year’s resolutions, because a resolution is simply a goal–and goals need to be set and re-set frequently to make progress.

Today I closed off 2011 with my friend and former coworker, Sara, just one of many amazing people I experienced the joy of meeting in 2011.  We ate too many crepes and had an amazing time, and were ironically wearing the same Hollister hoodie in different colours, pink t-shirts underneath and brown jackets!  [I took mine off for the picture].

sara and i!

After making a final pharmacy trip for the year (gotta love breathing, yeah?), I came home to do a final workout to hit 800 kilometers for 2011.  To give some perspective on how much I’ve grown in regard to exercise and fitness in 2011, my total on December 31st, 2010 was a tiny 100 kilometers [which was upped to a legitimate 106 as I found later on that I had forgotten to count an April race in there].

That. Is. Huge.  The big change in 2011 came in September through the amazingness that was Physical Activity: Promotion and Adherence, definitely my favourite university class thus far, and really gaining the understanding that the SMALL things make a BIG difference!  Though an unintentional success attributed to making small changes and regulating physical activity, since mid-September [at my highest ever weight which may have been some sort of weird fluke] I have lost a total of 17 pounds.  I can’t say I felt “bad” before or anything, but comparatively, I feel totally awesome both physically and emotionally with the GOOD changes that have happened!

I’ve walked 213 km, stationary biked 143, and racked up hundreds of kilometers in commutes. I walked one race, went on a few short hikes, went on an adventure rock climbing this past week.  I played hockey both in my skates and in my Sauconies and skated down rivers.  I’ve played in concrete jungles and playgrounds.  This has been the most active year of my life, and I plan to strip that title away from 2011 and give it to 2012.

This year, I have reached farther than I thought I could, pushed my lungs and my body in bigger ways.  I started thinking about things differently, relationships changed and growing happened.  I did things I couldn’t believe I would or could succeed at.  
I got a new job at an amazing daycare.  I worked one-on-one at camp for a week, which was one of the biggest challenges and biggest joys simultaneously.  I have met so many amazing people in “real life” and online.  One of my best guy friends for a time became my first boyfriend and even though it mutually didn’t work out, it definitely did not damage our friendship, which was the most important thing to us.  I returned to Chicago.  I watched one of the girls I do inclusion with grow so much in where she’s at, while simultaneously realizing the growth in myself through her.  I have fallen more and more in love with the subject that is applied health.  I have changed my perspectives on health advocacy, become more involved, and continued to learn how to OWN my asthma and encourage others to do the same.  I have learned to better live with what I’ve been handed.  I have learned more deeply that health and wellness is a choice.  I have learned to see things differently, engage differently, and not just make goals, but meet goals and ENGAGE in these goals to use them as learning experiences.

I want to continue that next year.  Continue moving forward, continue proving myself wrong, continuing to grow and learn and thrive, not simply survive.

There is more goodness coming.  There is a year of hope, joy, change, growth, learning, and love ahead.

Bring it on 2012. GOOD THINGS!