Q01

Describe a significant experience that has happened in the past year. How did it affect you? Are you grateful? Relieved? Resentful? Inspired?

I broke up with someone that I thought was going to be the one and was very disappointed and hurt.

I decided to start studying to become an LISW. I am looking forward to new opportunities that lie ahead of me.

I retired from my job of 30 years. This transition scared me, released me, relieved me, and depressed me. It has let me do new things, spend more time with my friends, and let me sleep late -- often much too late.

My love from college came back into my life and we got back together! I am the happiest I have been in a long time. He's brought trust and loving kindness into my life again and has me so excited for the future!

My father has not supported me ever since I chose what I wanted to study at undergraduate level. I've been accepted on to Masters course in Spain to start in January 2016 (I'm from the UK). He has offered no congratulations, offered no support. I recently moved back to his to get out of debt and try to save. With changing jobs I haven't been able to do a lot but he still demands I pay rent. I can not pay him anything yet he is still adamant I pay. It came to a head today, 13th September. He said I must pay council tax as he no longer receives single lodger discount, or I'll be kicked out. He also informed me because of my "flawed logic" I am no longer in his will. His logic is infathomable to me and I can't get my head around it. Just because I want to pursue my dream but fallen on hard times and he can't be bothered to support me. This will leave me never talking to him again. The only thing this has given is inspiration to not be like him. I will support my children in whatever their dreams are.

Mary, my best friend was diagnosed with lung cancer and it's terminal. Visiting her is a joy and a sadness. Once there were 4 of us but Jo and Viv passed. Now Mary. Emotional time.

Getting fired from what I thought was my dream job was a crushing blow. It took me months to get over it. Now I'm facing the possibility of working in home at night and doing nursing school during the day. I think it may turn out to be one of the best things that ever happened to me.

I have accepted that people do not always do as they say, and I have either had to be frustrated and mad or frustrated and move on in a positive way. I have chosen the latter.

I had a baby. My first born. My son. Life has been different since then. Quit my job to be a stay-at-home-mom and a housewife. I'm grateful because he's a healthy baby boy and having a child at my age is a blessing. So that's a relief. I admit I'm sad that parts of me have faded away and all I'm occupied with is the baby, my husband, and the house's needs. Sleep would be nice, but after awhile you get creative in getting bits of sleep here and there. Inspired? Well, yes! I now sing more and am almost done with another song......since the last one was done years ago. Baby helps but also with this new lifestyle, I have a new evaluation on life and who I am in it.

I think the most significant thing that happened to me, in a year of significant things, was being beaten by my ex. Nothing will change your life like having your physical safety jepordized by someone you love and trust. Weirdly enough though, I'm not sorry this happened. I am grateful because it taught me so many valuable lessons- like how tough I am. I am relieved because my ex is no longer in my life. I am resentful because it has caused me great pain and turmoil. I will say this though- as significant as that was- its not something that i want to actively remember in one year. There's so much more that i want to have as a prominent memory. This is something that happened to me- not something that defines me. I like to think of it like this: I wasn't beaten, I just took a beating.

On June 25th, gay marriage was legalized in all 50 states. I am so grateful because many of my friends will use this right. I am so overjoyed for this and very excited.

My mother agreed to help our family out with tuition for both of my college bound children. I was very grateful, I was quite worried about how to pay for both or having to choose one over the other to pay for tuition. She calmed me down and said not to worry about paying tuition.

My father's death was a blow, not completely a surprise, but a big change nonetheless. In the months since I have come to more fully appreciate his kindness, his intelligence, and his love. Much of what is good about me comes from having had his example in my life. I am sad, perhaps even depressed, but also grateful.

Kitchen finally finished- so wonderful to have a real kitchen. Feel so privileged. The house is finally looking more like a home.

I left the country for the first time in 15 years. September 11 (2001) pretty much ended my travels & then I got used to staying home--I developed & got used to a fear of leaving. Now: I am grateful, relieved, and inspired. Grateful to the friends who made it easy to get on a plane and go. Relieved that this bit of scar tissue had finally dissolved. Inspired to travel a lot more—am planning further trips to Europe, & have already traveled in the States since then.

I turned 16 this summer, and on my road test I got into a minor accident. I got a ticket and it was the day before my 16th birthday. My anxiety flared up and I now have PTSD from the experience. I used to think only soldiers got that. I am sad, mad, and also disappointed. I am trying to push through but it is becoming increasingly difficult. The pressure around me to get my license, do well in junior year, do good on the ACT and SAT, it's all becoming too much.

Being ill in hospital gave me time to look at my life. It made me decide to start on the road to converting to Judaism.

We moved. I am very resentful of the circumstances that caused our move.

Unemployed. It was a great opportunity to take some time off. Do some fun things. Look at personal strengths and weaknesses. Both relieved and sad that it's over--happy to have a source of income, but I did like the time freedom. Glad I took the opportunity to do something I really wanted to do--a volunteer vacation.

I interviewed for a couple jobs I would be qualified at, but was turned down. I was upset, and a little resentful, and angry with myself. But I think maybe it lit a fire under me to do my current job a little better.

I was fired from a job that wasn't my true calling. I was a little hurt because I had felt betrayed by a person that I thought was a good friend and resentful that I wasn't even given an opportunity to discuss the so called issue at hand which led to me being let go. This took about 2 months to recover from but ultimately I felt relieved. Relieved not to have a that energy in my life and now it forced me to kick start what I've always wanted to do....my art. I moved to a place I've always wanted to live, by the ocean, away from the negative energy of the city and now feel more inspired about life in general. It is also a little scary to not have any security with money but I figure I have to trust what has happened, that it will all work out and continue to embrace the mystery.

I began doing yoga again which has led to significantly more balance and acceptance in my life. It is a great relief.

My youngest daughter had major surgery to remove the pins and rods that had been surgically inserted into her femur when it was rebroken six months before to repair a botched repair done 7 years before. I am grateful to the surgeon, Dr. Hertzenfeld and his clinic, The Rubin Institute at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore, MD for the amazing way the bone healed and his care of my daughter throughout her ordeal. I'm impressed and proud of how my daughter bore the pain and discomfort of two summers while the bones and muscle healed. Her patience and forbearance were inspiring. I'm relieved that everything is over and although she has a limp, her legs are strong and mostly the same length. I want to learn patience and have learned how to care without being overbearing during this time.

This year I have felt that my faith has been challenged in such a way that I have begun to question my underpinnings of who I am. This year was one of triumph for gender equality and marriage equality; another giant step to acceptance and redemption for those are LGBT and those who love them. Social media has a way of exposing the dark ugly places of people’s thoughts. Whenever the media reported about marriage licenses, same sex unions, or Kaitlin’s journey, the firestorm of comments by those I thought I knew scorched me. The toxicity of their words made me sick to my stomach and etched away the remaining trust that I had in my church. Sadly, they never knew how much they were hurting people like me. They felt that it was their right, their obligation to speak up by posting their thoughts or sharing articles of condemnation. Their rants about “religious persecution” clouded my view of the loving Jesus that I know. It made me wonder if anyone out there was like me: loving God and loving a son who is gay. By January of 2015 I found Franklin PFLAG. It was such a relief to know that there is someone there for me who, like me has felt the silent rejection of others. The second closet is a deep and lonely place and frankly I’m sick of living in there.. I am resentful of my church. To be fair, I’ve not allowed them to really see who I am and how I really feel. So I am assuming that if they did they wouldn’t know what to do with me and that essentially they would just avoid me thus shoving me further and further away. I am grateful for PFLAG. I feel that I am going to church every time I go. Tonight I went to church ~but we didn’t sing any songs No prayers were offered, ~though mine were answered I didn’t hear an altar call, ~but my soul was restored

I've recently moved out on my own and am living with a roommate for the first time. She's a fairly conservative Christian and a health nut so I can feel kind of awkward sometimes but for the most part it's been great. I'm pretty proud of myself and kind of relieved to not be living at home anymore. It feels like I have so much more freedom now and I love it!

My mom had a heart attack, and then triple bypass surgery. She is fine, and slowly getting better, but it made me feel really scared and realize my parent's mortality, which was hard. It also frustrates me because she partially caused it by not taking care of herself, and also because my dad stresses her out so much. I also felt guilty because I didn't want to fly home to deal with everything, I didn't feel ready for it. It was really hard to deal with, and I'm still dealing with it, but it has definitely inspired me to take care of myself- eat healthy, stay active and manage my stress, so that I'm not in the same situation when I'm 50.

I moved to a much better apt. I feel that I can live normally now.

Mom died. I am confused and sad. I feel completely responsible for dad. He needs much reassurance, taking care of and calming down. Sometimes, I'm awash in waves of sadness that seem to come from nowhere. It's especially confusing given my difficult relationship with her when she was alive.

My supervisor was just let go. I am weirdly emotional about this. I don't feel guilty exactly, but I do feel bad for her. Although it has only been a little over a week, and even though we have a lot of work to do because of her departure, the mood is so much lighter. I was hoping that I would be offered full-time employment, but I am beginning to be doubtful that will happen. I guess this means I need to keep looking. I am hurt that I wasn't given this opportunity, like I am not trusted. So I need to know this going forward and figure out how to change everyone's view of me. I will have to think a lot about how to do that.

Since past September, I reconnected with one of my very good friends. We did't talk for a while after zie went to college, and last December we started FB chatting. We snapped back into our friendship like nothing had ever happened, and have talked every day since. I did not have many friends my senior year of highschool, and talking to Tony again helped me enjoy it. I also became very good friends with Tony's boyfriend Doc, and after a while i started dating them. It has helped me a great deal emotionally, and has allowed me to feel fulfilled and happy with my relationships. I am grateful that Tony felt comfortable enough to talk to me again, and that i reached out to Doc. I was able to help them greatly, and in doing so felt fulfilled since I am happiest when i am helping those i love. I hope that I can keep loving and helping them for the year going forward.

I walked away from 2 job opportunities. I wanted both of them. But I didn't feel like it was time. I've been miserable ever since. I don't know what to do.

My son crashed at college. He ultimately left with a medical leave. The weeks leading up to that moment and the intense engagement around ensuring that he would not harm himself took me back to the terror of his high school years. And yet, as in many crises there were many moments of grace. The people who showed themselves as extraordinary friends. The center we found barely a half hour from our new home that had all the services our son would need. The girlfriend who was astute enough to tell us when things were dire. And ultimately.. it led to new medication, new doctors, new doors opening even as old ones closed. I am also grateful for my husband's willingness to put all expectations of "how things should be" aside in the service of helping our son learn how to live his life, whatever form that takes. Today I am hopeful that slowly, we will all learn how to navigate this terrain.

I began receiving paying gigs as a voice artist. I began this career less than a year ago and here I am actually being a professional voice artist!

I was signed up to go on a choral trip to Europe. We went to a college before we left to practice and my panic got the best of me. I had a horrible panic attack and had to leave. this experience definitely lowered my self-esteem and made me feel horrible for a very long time. It was hard to come back and tell people that I didn't go. The only good thing I got out of it was realizing that my panic was too much for me to deal with by myself. I am now planning on going to Maclean's hospital for a 30 day treatment. I really hope it works out well.

السنة الماضية زاد يقيني ان المرء لا يمكن ان يكون وحيدا مطلقا ولو حشر حيا تحت الارض، مادام له رب، اله عظيم يحميه يرفق به ويساعده ويكفيه عن كل البشر

During the last year 4 of my immediate family members dealt with health crisis. Both my parents underwent surgery in the same week at 2 different hospitals. I had to rise to the occasion of playing nurse to them. I am relieved the scares are over and everyone either seems to be on the mend or doing much better then before. This makes me realize that life is precious and we don't always have control. We need to aspire to be more grateful adn live more fully. You just never know what lies around the corner.

My older brother passed away from lung cancer. I am grateful to have had him close by for his last few years. I am inspired by his choice to fill his final months with family & friends, travel, and laughter. he has always been a role model, and continues to set the bar high. I am inspired to do the things I have put off and waste less time on the things that just don't matter.

I wish it wasn't about a boy, but it is. I met the guy. And it was wonderful. And then it wasn't, like the flip of a switch. I had settled into it. I believed in it. And turns out he was either an asshole, or just really, really ill. Or both. But it's taking me way longer to get past it than I thought it would. And it has, once again, made me doubt my judgement. So that sucks. Upside, this new business is going well! And it could be how I ACTUALLY GET THE FUCK OUT OF DEBT. Yay!!

This year I entered into a period of reflection while starting a graduate program, with other important shifts in my personal life as well. The ability to learn how to make time for self-care, mindfulness, self-compassion, and time management was empowering. I feel grateful and inspired that I can apply the lessons I learned last year to make this one even better.

Travelling to UK on my own. I think it taught me so much, that it is fine to be alone and to spend time with myself. I had a lot of fun actually. But most of all I know in this world, everyone can be wonderful and beautiful ;)

I tried to kill myself three times in January, because I couldn't cope with life anymore. Obviously I failed and I am still here, but it has changed my outlook on life. I'm just unsure as to if it's changed for the better or not. I suppose I am grateful to a certain extent that I am still here, but there is still a huge part of me that is angry I couldn't even do that right :/

I lost my job two weeks before Christmas 2014. I've had one four-week stint of employment since then. The rest of the time has been spent looking for a meaningful position. It was a shock to the system when I was let go in December, but I have come to see it as a blessing. I have had the opportunity to think hard about what is important to me, and I am close now to taking a job that is meaningful in the context of my community.

In the past year, I committed to living a healthier lifestyle and shared that goal with my wife. It is significant because the experts say it added seven years to our lives. I am grateful just for the experience of setting a goal and achieving it and because it has improved the quality of my life. I feel better and more energetic as a result of dropping in excess (at this point) of 75 pounds. I am even more grateful that this is an experience I have shared with a person that I hope to enjoy those extra seven years with as we grow older.

So many! Of the 2 most significant, going through thyroid cancer with Francisco most affected me. First, the fear of loss, even though you know that risk is low. Secondly, having to step in as full-time single parent, now for 2, shows how hard it is and how much Francisco does for Tallulah and I. The experience bonded us even more and continued to prove how strong my love for him is, which was great since we also got married!

After our weekend trip to Paris I decided to commit to Daniel despite the age difference. I do love him and I hope it works out.

I haven't had any significant experiences in the past year. Which in and of itself shows I went wrong in life. Today is not a good day to ask me this question. Today I am feeling a lot of regret about the choices I've made in life and the relationships I've lost over the years. Today I want a time machine to take me back to 2003 and start over from there. If I could just go back and tell teenage me that the choices I would make at 16 would change the course of my life... hmm. If only that were possible.

I walked away from a 17 year marriage. My response to this question in terms of how it has affected me could go on for days, but what I do know is that, in spite of being petrified (keeping finances in check, parenting on my own) I have never felt so liberated. I find myself smiling more. My posture has changed. I have surrounded myself with people who help build me up instead of tear me down. I don't know what the year ahead has to offer me. My ex husband appears hell bent of generating drama where there need not be any. I keep waiting for his next bomb to drop. But I know I'm getting stronger and I can do this. I don't really have a choice. My child's well being depends on it.

A significant experience I had this year was going to BBYO's international convention. Although it was overwhelming it is incredible on what a reach we have on the Jewish teen community, and the reach that every youth group has on the Jewish community. And at least for me, BBYO has touched my life in a way that I will continue my Judaism and raise my kids Jewish.

I met a girl who destroyed me. At every opportunity, she would chew me up and spit me out with her lies and cheating, but I didn't realize how she was treating me until we grew apart. That is not to say I was in an abusive relationship, she acted like an angel when we were in the same room or when we contacted each other through social media. It was when I wasn't privy to what she was doing that she was sharing secrets of mine, sleeping with other men, and betraying my trust in many other ways. I'm very greatful to have had this happen to me, I consider it a learning experience and it has changed me in a very deep way. My standards in terms of the people I socialize with, and how I live my life have drastically changed. In my opinion, for the better.

Last year, I traveled 2423 miles to visit my ex. He's a truck driver so I got to tag along and visit 5 states within a day. I'm grateful for that experience despite the fact that we've broken up because it triggered my nomadic spirit.

I moved to Malawi. This is without a doubt the most significant thing that has happened to me, and probably that will happen to me for a long time. Every single day I feel blessed. I've created a whole life here, and I'm so grateful. I have the best friends, who've become my family. A wonderful job. Nick is here. I can't possibly complain about anything. Today, just any other Sunday, I was reflecting with my housemate about how lucky we are. We all have jobs we love, and spend our weekends with people we love just as much. In fact, sometimes it's hard to imagine how I could possibly get happier in life than I am right now.

Losing my car and moving back in with my parents was the hardest thing I had ever done. I was left with no means to help myself and felt completely powerless. Yet I was digging myself into a hole where I was completely dissatisfied with my life and trying desperately to hold on to something that was wearing me out and burning me at both ends. I miss my old home and hope to one day return, but at the same time I was relieved that life took a sharp right turn for me to see what was really important for me in order to have a happy life — no matter how trying the rest of it is.

I wanted to die and almost did. I hit bottom and am struggling my way back up. Things are good, I'm connected with my boys. I'm taking care of myself and working to build a support system that will keep me from getting that low ever again. I'm dating a wonderful woman named Amy - I rhink she's my forever person. I have a great job I'm great at and life is good and is getting better. Regardless if what life throws at me I resolve to be happy and positive.

This past year, I had my first girlfriend. Five months later, I had my first breakup, too. For 144 days, I was in a relationship; I got to experience the honeymoon period, and then the souring period when the other person isn't perfect. She broke up with me because I wasn't up to her standards. Looking back on it, I'm actually somewhat grateful, as it showed me both how important communication is in a relationship, as well as the importance of not putting the other person on a pedestal or expecting perfection out of them.

My 24 year old son (who I have called "boogie" since he was little has dropped out of college and it shattered all MY hopes and dreams for him. Through this process I have come to deeply understand that every person -including the ones I gave birth too - have their own definition of success. My son is happier than he has ever been and I am learning to accept and trust his process. Some days are easier than others. I believe there is a deep gift here and perhaps one of the hardest lessons of my life so far. I call it the #boogieprinciple.

I left the company I'd been working at for 15 years to take a position at a much larger one. It was really scary, and exciting, and so far it's working out really well!

My father in law passed away. It has been a lot of reflecting on life and how to be a better person. How to be a better wife and supporter of my husband and all he does.

I got pregnant... My very first ultrasound...I was solo, and seeing the little blip on the screen made my knees literally go weak, all shaky... It was the most amazing experience, I was so filled with joy. We had gotten pregnant in just one month of trying- at 39 years old.... Whoohoo!

This year I am going through a bitter divorce after being married for 14 years and having 3 children. This is the hardest and most stressful time in my life. I am lonely but that is not the worst of it since I was just as lonely (just not alone) during my marriage. It is very scary because I fear winding up alone for the rest of my life. I also fear taking him back and staying in a bad marriage. I am trying to look at it as getting a do over. Getting a shot at making a better choice for myself. I am hopeful.

I had to learn to live with a colostomy for ten months. After having it reversed I am very very grateful.

Finally began the change of life. I am ohso grateful and excited for the next phase of my life. I understand that there are still issues from long ago that if not resolved we continue to carry it with us through life...extra baggage I don't need. Travel light (the word can be defined in so many ways!) because I look forward to picking up wisdom, a lightness of spirit, and joy! Celebrating life.

Being in Chicago, doing something so completely unlike me, being alone, meeting new people. Whoever hard it was at times, I am so damn grateful to have done it, to experience it, to know that I can do anything if I just take that leap of faith in myself, if I let myself to haut let go, relax and enjoy life as it happens around me.

I was rejected for a job that I totally believed was mine. I've gone through all stages of grief and continue to ache a bit, but remain grateful in general.

The most significant experience I had this year was giving a speech at a concert in Carnegie hall. In my speech, I dedicated our choir's concert to the spirit of love and equal rights for all on the day that the right to marriage was confirmed for all people in the United States. This was probably the crowning achievement of my high school years, a capstone experience for me. I'm grateful to have had the opportunity to speak those words in front of an audience. Looking back, I am scared that I won't have similar experienced in my future, and I hope these fears can be disconfirmed.

Scans showed that I remained cancer free. for three years. The fear of recurrence remains, but is much diminished. I move on, knowing, after two previous cancers, that it can happen again, but that there is life to be lived.

I lost my job of 5 years and made SurfSUPtx my full time job. I am relieved and grateful that I can do what I want for a living instead of something I hate to pay bills.

My family relationships have strengthened. I celebrate my 75th birthday with a wonderful celebration brought about by my family. My partner celebrated her 70th birthday and was so happy with my surprise for her. I crossed off the top item on my bucket list...I danced at my granddaughters wedding. I feel so grateful for the love and care I feel from family and friends. I am loved and appreciated by many

I graduated from veterinary school! I was more relieved than anything, but also grateful, and excited to begin my career.

I had the opportunity to attend BBYO's International Kallah in Lake Como, PA over the summer. The second Shabbat experience (Friday, July 24 through Saturday, July 25) was "A Shabbat to Remember" - we invited almost a dozen Holocaust survivors to stay at our camp, share their stories, and be inducted into the Grand Order of the Aleph Zadik Aleph/International Order of the B'nai B'rith Girls. It was wonderful to be able to share over 24 hours with these amazing men and women, and I left the day inspired that all challenges can be overcome, and the Jewish people WILL survive. I'm grateful for this opportunity and every opportunity BBYO provides for me, and I know that no matter what the upcoming year throws at me, I will overcome it.

My dad passed away, I see this as something that I grieve for and won't ever be able to get back. However, I have to make greater things out of myself while lamenting when I need to. The experience has made me more spiritual and I hope that continues as well.

A new job that comes with a lot of potential.

This year, I moved into my own apartment in Los Angeles and I am very grateful. My previous living situation was toxic and so to live alone has opened up a new life for me. I do things because they spark joy in me now, rather than simply trying to escape a bad situation. I'm always afraid living alone will close me off from the world as an introvert, but I feel more open to friends and life now. I finally feel that Los Angeles feels like home.

I spent a semester abroad. I've felt out of place and empty ever since I've returned “home”. I never want to stop traveling. I feel inspired to just hop on a plane and see where life takes me. On the flip side, I am resentful and discontent as doing so would destroy the life and love I have built. To fly or to ground? The dilemma...

I moved my children out of Jewish day school. It was one of the most difficult parenting decisions I've had to make. I am angry at their school (my employer!!). After only one week, both kids still believe it was the right choice to move. And My oldest says that his teacher gets him. He's never said that before. And his teacher has been complimentary of him and he way he thinks. Also never happened before. That brings me relief. It's a bittersweet feeling that still brings me to tears.

I traveled to Prague, a city on my bucket list, and discovered I love Budapest more. I have always wanted to travel to Prague, and finally made the trip, for which I an wholly grateful. I fell totally in love with central Europe and intend to return someday.

I started my own travel business, it's been a huge adjustment working out my home & trying to get out & promote my business. I am very grateful for the opportunity.

I competed again on the Freeride circuit. It had been nagging at me for a while, and the memories of my last comp had been haunting me. This time I took the opposite, "safe and fun" approach, which did not pay off. I think I just didn't have enough of a balance of competition intensity with that mindset. But I was also told I was robbed by the judges. Regardless, it messed with my head. I hate admitting that I need official validation in my skiing. I feel like I deserve those sponsored trips around the world that are photographed and filmed for magazines. This year I need a plan to get closer to that.

Moving to Paris in 2014 with the family, to live for a year or two. I didn't realize how much discomfort it would cause, as I felt embarrassed by my French speaking abilities. I didn't realize before this how much of identity is tied to ability to communicate. I felt constantly stupid, like a 3 year old unable to do the most basic things. I wanted to quit because it was coming so slowly and one point I was saying this to Andrew, and he said, "why don't you just jump off this bridge then". It was a real low. But I'm much better (pas mal mais je voudrais que je parle bien que maintenant) ... than if I had quit. And I think that's what I am reminded of / grateful for. To remember it's not where you start, it's how you go from there.

In May, I attended International Jazz Day in Paris. I was reminded of the power of music to unite. As viewed like the earth from space, music sees no boundaries. I was deeply moved during the finale when all of the musicians took the stage and sang John Lennon's "Imagine." Make a difference every day.

It has almost been a year since I was diagnosed with Herpes type II. I am grateful in a way because it took me to a point in my life where I realize that some men just are not worth my time and the man who gave me this disease did not warn me and forced me into the situation I am now in. My initial break out was the worst and I have not had another one since, but now I take precautionary measures if I feel I may be getting sick. I'm not resentful because this disease will not take my life it just causes me to be more careful. I could never be with someone without letting them know and I am thankful that I now have a big reason to be more selective of my significant others. I am empowered in a sense that I realize my strength and resiliency in this world and I can use this to help others in similar situations. I use my scars to help others and I'm grateful for each broken path in my life.

This year I was offered a Kindergarten teaching job. I was grateful because it took me out of another position and away from the most negative person I have ever known, much less worked with. PLUS, it brought me full circle in my teaching career. I started in education thinking I would be a kindergarten teacher. I've taught second grade, special education, third grade, and fifth grade. I've developed a successful after school program. I've been very involved in the early childhood community. I've worked as an administrator. This is my first opportunity to teach Kindergarten. I'm thrilled. I'm even more thrilled as my teaching skill, passion, and expertise has re-emerged. The last two years have been difficult. They've taken a tremendous toll on my self-esteem----but this is bringing it all back. Teaching Kindergarten is the most fun I've had in a very long time. And I get paid to do it!

I finally became divorced. It signaled my transition to a new stage, but it still didn't eliminate all of the fighting and negativity that I had hoped for. I am grateful and relieved and excited to be entering this new phase of my life. Today I signed a contract to sell my home. This opens my future to a new beginning a new start a turning. Modah ani lefanechah

My son graduated from high school and left for college. He is spending his first semester in Italy. He has not had a really easy time of it. When he writes, there is a lot of grief. Not being able to really help, other than moral support is hard. Sometimes I do feel resentful. I want him to just enjoy it like the other freshman he is with. When he is happy, I feel relieved. I don't want my mood to be so wrapped up in what is happening with him. Watching him become an adult is both amazing and terrifying. Like all of being a parent has been.

So much has happened in the past year! I've come completely off of my anti-depressants, we bought a house, and I'm pregnant! Baby will be here in 10 days or so :) I am so grateful and excited and proud that I have gotten to this point. Many years ago I never thought it would happen. I'm especially thankful for the family and friends that have been so helpful!

My partner's cancer emerged and he had to go through Chemotherapy. It was terrifying for me to confront cancer and the possibility of losing a partner I just married a few years ago (granted, it was a health issue that precipitated getting married...). It was a lot to try to finish a dissertation and negotiate the needs of a family that had already lost their mom to cancer. In the process, I learned more about cancer and how for many it is more like a chronic illness. I also reconnected with a friend I admired in high school who is managing stage 4 lung cancer . While today is a hard day for OTHER reasons, cancer is not the reason today. And it is also the Jewish New Year and tonight is Rosh Hashanah...this mixed faith family could use a fresh start.

I guess the biggest thing that happened was buying our first house. We've only been here about a month, but it's been absolutely fantastic so far. The moving process butted up against the beginning of school and a Washington DC vacation which was stressful, but now that we're settled, it's so much better than the old, crappy house we were renting. I guess I'm cheating and saying two, but my dad's diagnosis as pre-Alzheimer's has been a big blow. We knew he was, so it wasn't a huge shock, but I still cried about it. The blessing is that he's on some medicine that seems to have helped a bit. I can at least tell difference when I talk to him on the phone. It could also be that my mom is retired now and he has someone to talk to all day that is causing the improvement. Either way, I just hope they're both around for a long time to come.

I took a new job, which involved leaving a job I was very happy with. I was terrified to make the move, but the new opportunity seemed to be everything I loved about the old job, but with more. I wondered if it could be too good to be true... if I'd be getting too greedy by taking it... if there was a life lesson in there somewhere about throwing away a really good thing just because you're dazzled by a new opportunity that looks better than it actually is. Since then, I've loved the new job, and things at the old job are going downhill. People I enjoyed working with have left, and they're making unfortunate changes in the department. If I were still there, I'd be getting frustrated if I were still there, but things are getting better every day at the new job, so I know I made the right choice. It feels really good.

I wrote 5 books this year, including publishing my work of fiction, First Family, which I've been waiting until the right time to do. I'm most of the above - grateful, relieved, and inspired. And I'm anticipating that this opens the door for future success. First Family has 17 5-star reviews (out of 17) so far, which makes me feel great.

My mother-in-law, Mary, died on September 6th at age 93. My husband and I had been involved in her care for almost two years, beginning when a bout of pneumonia rendered her too weak to live independently anymore. Mary moved into a senior residence in Rochester, an hour and a half drive from us, and my husband and I spent one day a week, usually Saturday, with her. I was glad to be part of her care team, and especially glad that she wasn't in pain and was able to face the progressive limitations with unfailing grace and dignity. She never complained, instead focusing on the things she could still enjoy. Though she got tinier and tinier, she loved to eat, especially sweets. We played cards with her on most visits, almost always a game called "Flinch," which had been a family favorite when my husband and his siblings were kids and which she relished no matter who won. Early on in our visits to her in Rochester, I brought her a small blooming plant. She liked it so much it became a tradition: I brought a different plant every week. I loved the challenge of selecting them, trying to mix up the kind of plant and color scheme, and she always commented on what I'd brought. My husband's family isn't effusive, but I certainly got the message that our visits and gifts were much appreciated. Mary gave us an inspiring example of how to live well throughout the course of her life, and the end was no exception. I was grateful and inspired to be part of her life, and I am well aware that without her I wouldn't have the wonderful man who is my husband. There is much sadness at her death, but, as the last two weeks did involve pain, also relief. There is no room in any part of this experience for resentfulness.

My brother came to me with his marriage troubles. This is what a brother should do. Only I'm feeling very conflicted in giving the type of advice that should be given. I love his wife and children so much. All I can see is the horror of the emotional burden that will come and the financial chaos it will cause for him. I find myself saying get professional help, keep talking, don't give up. Should I really be saying, happiness for all involved is the most important. If your house is toxic and no longer a home, you should move on and find a way to keep the family functioning in a non-traditional manor. I'm so conflicted. I selfishly want them to work this out. And yet I'm avoiding any real acknowledgement of the problem. It's sad.

My stepson became mentally ill. It has devastated me and my family. It has challenged my marriage. It has both inspired and pushed the limits of my compassion. It has tested my ability to cope with the unknown. It has made me question my resilience.

I did my conversion into Judaism in April. It was a wonderful experience, and I had so much support and love from everyone. The speech came in a close second. Having people I love watch me make an achievement is something my 8-year old self always wanted to do, but never got to. It inspires me to keep going.

Converted to Judaism and I am very inspired!

At the age of almost 60 I am reconnecting (separated from it due to parents relocation when I was age 7) with my religion by birth; I joined a Reform Temple and have started taking adult ed. classes including Hebrew. I am SO thankful that I have made these choices. I have been attending Sabbath (we only have Friday) services and have given up my former secular Friday night activities. Presently I have to read the transliteration of most prayers but am starting to remember some of the shorter ones. I get a lot of deep felt satisfaction from it and enjoy the fellowship I have with my new friends. I feel as though I've "come home"!

There has been a family feud and it has been horrible.

I've been with J for over a year and feel completely blessed & loved. I can't wait to see what's the future holds. I strive for the best in our relationship.

I chose to end some "friendships" and move on and create real friends with an amazing small group of people.

I ran my first full marathon. I was hard work and tiring but I never gave up, I never cried, and I never wanted to quit. I learned about determination and will. I leaned that I couldn't do it on my own and was so thankful for my running buddy. We did it together and it was amazing.

I had to start a new job and was terrified that I would not be good enough. However, upon starting, I found the staff to be very accepting and the only one now that worries me is the principle. I feel more capable now.

I started graduate school, an MBA in Sustainability, and I am challenged, inspired, motivated and frightened. My father died, and I am frightened, sad, free, and guilty. But I can't really access these feelings, so I feel "Fine"

Last January my boss, who I loved, quit and I was basically alone on the job (it's a very small organization) for several months. When I finally got a new manager, he was a totally different type of leader, and we did not mesh well. Eventually, about 6 months after he arrived, he let me go. Through this experience I learned a lot about what I want in a supervisor and a job. I learned what I need from others and what I can count on myself for. I learned a lot about how I react to difficult situations, and I learned that I don't like working alone. I also learned that I have a tendency to put too much emphasis on my leader and not enough trust in myself. As I start this new year looking for work, I only hope I can keep the lessons of the last 9 months in mind as I look for my next place, my next role, my next journey.

Signs of mortality. The fear of losing my eldest brother. Not realizing that I had been holding my breath for seeming hours while he was in surgery. Then losing my baby-daddy just a coup.e of weeks later. Seeing photos of us, so young (!), at his memorial on Erev Erev rosh hashanah. I'm so ready to let this year go!

There are many, many events in the past year that I could consider significant - from the birth of my newest nephew to beginning my doctoral program. However, I'd say the most significant thing to happen is my delving into Judaism. Since beginning the conversion process, I feel like I have grown in many ways. The most obvious way would be that my relationship with God is certainly more developed, though, as all Jews do, I still struggle from time to time with the concept. Other changes include just generally being more aware of the good things in my life, and becoming closer to my partner, who is Jewish, as I spur him to rediscover his roots. Speaking of the good things in my life, right now I'm sitting on my front porch, staring at a beautiful blue Carolina sky, having just finished typing the first of many papers for my doctoral program...and life is good. Baruch atah Adonai.

My cousin died unexpectedly and it was a huge family tragedy, it made us think of our health and that of my 98 year old dad. D 95 year old mom. We had health issues this year and are mostly resolved, and want to continue livi as fully and comfortably as we can, I see the pain of my cousins and his family. It is hard to know what what to say to others to help them through this impossibly difficult time

Graduated college and got new job

Brian passing away has colored my whole life since December. It has been the single most devastating loss I have ever had. No one should have to lose their child, even an adult child remains your child forever. While the loss is so very deep, there are parts that I do feel grateful about. Cancer could have lingered and taken him from his family bit by bit but he went quicklys so that the tragedy became the blessing for him and for his family. There was releif as well because he did not want to live life without a quality of life. I wanted what was best for him and not for me so I prayed for his highest good and that was that he was taken from us very quickly. His life inspired me and I think of all the ways that he lived his life to the fullest and am constsntly inspired by that. His children, though young, will hopefully remember all the wonderful good times and a dad that was there for them and totally hands on.

I got my first top grade in a exam which felt insanely good! It was just so great to finally feel like I had chosen something I actually knew how to do. I also have a guy telling me I am beautiful, even after seeing me in person, which feels really good, even though I am not interested in him like that. It is also awesome to finally (at 25) be able to participate in talking about guys!

This year I was engaged and then unengaged. I am grateful for the entire experience. It was one that allowed me to face and hold sacred the things that I need and want in a partner. I am most grateful for what it led too, which was an opening to the woman would fulfills all of my needs and offerw space for me to be a better person, not through challenges but trust and openess.

We decided to move to San Diego (and alternate with Connecticut.) A drastic change in our lives. For one, I had to retire. To tell the truth, I was getting tired and would probably have retired soon anyway, but retiring was a disappointment because I had originally planned to work till I dropped. Reason for the move - to be close to the grandkids. If I didn't do it now (having wanted to for a long time) I wouldn't be able to watch them grow up. I have some apprehension, but not a lot.

In reality, every day of life is significant. I am glad the way I am living my days. I am a teacher and that is significant because I train people think and be independent. I know it is a kind of cop out - but it is true. There were significant waves in my daily life - but not last year. Those past significant waves still affect my life now - but I am stoic about those. So yes - every sun shining day, every musical drizzly day - every colorful fall day and every snow-white shivery cold day - I feel is significant. I am grateful for these days - although these are not wavy significant days.

Rotator cuff surgery and the aftermath. It's made me even more self-conscious about my physical body, aware of its limitations, saddened by what I can't do yet grateful of what I can. I like to think that it's made me adaptable--never have I cultivated the use of my left hand and arm!--and more empathetic to those experiencing the ravages of aging, accidents, disease. 6 months later, I am still processing the surgeon's phrase "permanent restrictions" and applying it to life in general.

I lost someone with whom I had gotten very close after a long health struggle they had. I feel sad yet blessed for having known them. This person was such an inspiration to me.

Last October, 2 days before my 34th birthday, I broke my arm so bad, I had to stay in hospital for 8 days. It was only partly my fault. We were stupid drunk, my friend wanted to hug me and my biyfriend, we tripped and he fell on me and the damage was done. My radialis nerve was damaged, I couldn't lift my wrist or my fingers and I play the guitar and the piano and wasn't sure I could ever do this again. I have two metal plates in my arm now. One will be removed next Tuesday. It was a long and painful process until I could start to move my arm again properly. First time I could eat with fork and knife was like Christmas for me. I had lots of time to think about life, about the past, about the present. I used the time to really evaluate life. I learned to be grateful for little things like being able to close your bra or scratch your own back. I was depressed, angry, sad. But I was never angry or full of hatred towards my friend. From the first day on we pretended that none of us remembered how this accident happened. But in fact, my friend called and visited more often than ever, so I'm pretty sure he knows. We all know, yet we don’t say it aloud. So how this affected me is that I learned never to get that stupid drunk again (kinda funny I had to turn 34 to learn!) and I learned that actually, friendship sometimes is to pretend amnesia collectively.

There are two. My boyfriend and I got a dog because he REALLY wanted one. I've never been much of a pet person but I was pleasantly surprised at how much I actually care for our dog and am happy to see her when I get home. The second is that my boyfriend moved into my apartment. It is a tiny place but we've make it work, and we can live in a tiny space and not want to kill each other than that's really saying something about our relationship.

Getting engaged to my best friend and soulmate. I feel happier than I thought I could. I cannot wait to marry him in a little over a month!!

After 3 years I have finally completed making masks and wish books from 100 young girls and women. Now there are just a few tasks to complete before installing 3 Wishes into the Gallery this coming November. Women incarcerated in the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) were participants 94-100. Going into the prison was scary. Meeting the 6 women made me feel apprehensive. However, the 6 women, all incarcerated from having committed felonies, were - what can I say -lovely people. However, their stories were gripping as all had suffered physical and emotional abuse as well as drug addition. In many ways there imprisonment was preordained. Grateful isn't the right word - as that is a self-word. My feelings were profound ones - and made me realize that the distance between a comfortable life and a life these women had to endure is extremely small.

Well. Janel. The most significant thing that happened to you this past year is that we got pregnant. And as I read this next year a lot more will have happened. Even if it wasn't planned and even if I was going to wait like 4 more years before I did this I'm grateful. I'm so happy they are growing healthy and that they are twins and that it happened when it did. Because let's face it. 28 is a good age to be pregnant.

I got the keys to my house on Halloween! I love my house.

I attempted to start a new and potentially important relationship, and it went badly, possibly compromising my place in a group I belong to. It made me reassess what I should be looking for in this situation.

In June of this year, I got the chance to visit France on a study abroad program for two weeks. Being enveloped by a new setting and meeting so many new people was incredibly invigorating for me. The trip was exactly what I'd been hoping for that year; exactly what I'd been craving. Now, I think of 2015 as a two-part event: pre-France and post-France. Post-France has been so good to me: I've sought treatment for my depression and anxiety and as a result, feel much more fulfilled in my life. There's still so much more room to grow and succeed, but I feel a thousand times happier and fuller than I did pre-France.

I took a big trip to a developing region. Each day I saw people who live in very difficult circumstances make a life, be kind to one another, focus on the things that mattered: caring for their family and friends, doing meaningful work, making a difference. People who had been through unspeakable things spoke of them daily, quietly, thoughtfully, so that no one would forget and other people wouldn't make the same mistakes. Then I came home to the richest country in the world to my easy, sweet, privileged life. Grateful AND inspired once again to do my part to make the world a more loving, caring, equitable place.

I got a first in my degree and I worked fucking hard for it. It was one of those things that I visualised and decided to work unapologetically hard for, and it paid off. And that's made me realise a few things - it's okay to want something and work for it, and I have the capacity to achieve things if I'm willing to work for it. My grandfather, before he died, assured me that I would have to choose between a first and a social life, and honestly I'm glad I proved him wrong. Obviously I didn't live the life I lived in first year, but I didn't even want to. I enjoyed third year probably the most of all of uni, and I'm proud of what I did.

Getting more involved in my temple. I feel very grateful for m synagogue. If I didn't have the opportunity to volunteer and get to know more people, I probably would feel sad and depressed. I would have felt lost and not knowing what to do with my life. I feel like I have more of a spiritual life. I also feel very inspired to try and learn about my religion.

I switched roles at work earlier this year. I had been miserable under my old boss for the six months prior and it was really messing with my psyche. And then I lucked out -- I had been looking for openings at work and I found one, in the department I wanted to be in and they wanted me. I switched in January. It took a little while to feel at ease. I was terrified that my bad experience would haunt me or that I was somehow responsible for it, but it really hasn't. I love my boss and my coworkers and the work I do. I feel rewarded and competent -- all the things I'd felt prior to the bad boss. If anything, I learned how damaging a bad boss can be and how quickly it's necessary to move out of such a situation.

Two really - I had a wonderful celebration with friends & family on turning 70 in November. In the spring - my longest term Baltimore friend had a heart attach with no warning and died.. I was relishing the good parts of aging - the comfort and confidence I have in myself, how much I love the life I'm leading - then it turned into trying to treat every day as precious and important - realizing it might be the last day of my life or the life of someone I love.

I took an interim position in Texas that I never would have dreamed of doing. it was a huge gift - felt like I made a big difference and benefited myself from a change of scene and role. I love that the universe handed me this wildcard assignment and that I got out of the way long enough to say yes.

the husbands of two friends, both in their 60s, had serious health issues which will be ongoing and fatal. having this on my mind makes me more than grateful for my husband's continued health and employment. we are planning for a future that includes some probable disability for one or both of us, and hope to continue making adjustments in our living situation to reflect the inevitable physical limitations of aging.

Without time, it's impossible to know what was defining, or what was significant, but I think this past year was one of the most defining of my life. My dad shot himself about six months ago, I got employed in the field I want, I've experienced a real lack of safety, and what it's like to have fortune fall on you and make things happen. I'm mostly grateful. I said after he died that I feel changed in a way I can't quite explain, and I still do. I don't feel resentful or inspired, I feel grown, I feel like I'm doing what Grants are meant to do and how they are. I feel like I've shifted into a place that feels more formed. that's a person who is terrified of making definitive statements, and thinks that sky is going to fall all the time, but I think that's how I'll probably be for a while. It's very difficult for me to make declarative statements. But what I can say, is if this is my usual affect, if this is my career for longer than a minute I feel all right with that now. The tracks of our life get derailed and splinter, but I feel like I'm emotionally, spiritually and physically on the track that is my pace and fits my function. My dad's death had something to do with me feeling not like a fluctuating being in the way I did before. I can't tell you how. I can say this feels more fragile but also more real, and I don't know what that means but I know I mean it... I think.

I was made redundant for the first time in my life. Although I'd been expecting it for a few months, it was still a shock when it actually happened. It was a real blow to my self-confidence, which has never been that great. However, it has also forced me to think a lot about my skills and experience, and about the things that define a "good" job for me. I haven't got there yet.

I had a baby and it is all the adjectives but more so than anything, I am grateful and inspired. I'm also learning to be more mindful and present as time seems to move ever quicker.

I don't know if anything significant happened in the past year. When I wrote the first 10q, my papa died and my dad stopped talking to me. After that I fell into a depression for a while. I kept a job that made me miserable and no money at all. I tried to move forward but was stuck in a tar pit. I only recently came out of it. I am trying so hard not to blame myself for the lack of momentum in my life, for being 28 and still living at home, for being autistic. I am trying so hard to remember that I am not invisible or unlovable. Some days are better than others. ((Soundtrack: Better Son/Daughter by Rilo Kiley.))

I have begun new volunteer work and love it. I like the people I work with and the jobs I do. I look forward to going in. I'm there just because I enjoy doing it so the tension that can exist of being an employee is not there.

Iceland has an otherworldly beauty. It is harsh and cold and with a few exceptions, sounds like a cruel place to live year round. The landscape looks alive with rocks reaching for the surface everywhere you look, climbing up, out of the bed of wildflowers and fluffy moss. All that made it so exciting to explore with Yael. We sipped hot tea and coffee while driving through this wild place and listening to a story of a space man surviving in a place that didn't seem as crazy as what we saw right out our window. We stopped to climb mountains and waterfalls and to take dips in natural hot springs. We visited small, colorful towns and hiked a big glacier. I felt so disconnected from the entire world in this far off place and so connected to the person I love most. The experience seems frozen off from the flow of my regular life in the blueish crystal of deep glacial ice, and I hope it will continue to solidify and sharpen as a beautiful, happy, and exciting experience as more memories pile on top like freshly fallen snow.

The first significant experience (and there have been a few) is that the inspirational and loving and exciting relationship with SF ceased. This is because N became ill with the stories she told herself (and, potentially, because of S's behavior -- that, I will never know) about our relationship. S had to make a decision which was to limit our relationship to e-mails once or twice a week and a phone call at his decision. At first I was quite agitated physiologically and emotionally. Of course I knew that this occurrence could happen at any time due to the experimental nature of the relationship. Nevertheless, what was interesting to me was the physical pain that I experienced especially during the time when I did not know what was happening at their end -- all I heard was silence. And the silence was deafening and penetrating. My work around this issue was to once again practice calming my nervous system, practicing what I teach: that everything arises and passes away, both the pain and the joys of life, and continue my life in a positive and compassionate way -- being compassionate to myself, and to N and S especially. I can go to the feelings of resentment -- that is an easy path to take, but the pathway is not so slick anymore. I can easily come back to balance should that emotion arise. I am so very grateful for experiencing the connection that taught me I still can love deeply in both an emotional and a physical way, with abandon; that I can feel those feelings I thought were long gone -- the feelings of excitement and tittilation when one meets another and all the "bells and whistles" explode. I am grateful I felt balanced at those moments when he would leave, with a deep knowing of the connection we held; I am grateful he is ethical and responsible toward his wife and family, that his devotion to his family overrides his ability to continue our relationship. I am sad, but grateful. For in truth I would not want a relationship with anyone who was not devoted to ethical and moral principles and to the well-being of all. I am inspired by these events -- knowing that if I can achieve this balance and harmony in the midst of the pain and disappointments of life, that it is possible for all to do the same. This is just one more experience that teaches me this valuable lession. The experiences in my childhood, the disappointments I experienced in my family of origin, my children's illnesses ilnesses and struggles, the pain of feeling unloved in my marriage. And also my successes in my career, my many friendships that endure, my ability to be independent, physically and financially. I can complain, or ... not. I can cry, or ... not. I can dance ... or not. Life is the "full catastrophe" -- and I am learning how to enjoy all of it!

I am really disengaged at work. I don't want to be there and I am still 19 months away from retirement. I lost my temper on a Friday morning in a public portion of the office and dropped the f-bomb. I was really worried that in spite of the fact I have been an exceptional employee for the previous 22 years, the administration might use this as an excuse to fire me and put my pension at risk. My boss was away, but left an email that he wanted to meet with me Monday at 4pm. He wouldn't tell me the nature of the meeting My mind went into some pretty dark places for the next three days until my meeting with him. It was about the f-bomb incident but all he wanted from me was assurance that it would never happen again and to explore the reasons why. Over the course of the 3 days I had felt extremely fearful and despondent, but was ultimately relieved and inspired to do the better when I realized how valued I still was.

A year ago today I sat through High Holiday services in Madrid. It was the first time I was away from my family for something that really meant family to me. Going through all of the adjustments of living in a new country, I had no idea how comforting it would be to walking into a room and hear the words shana tovah. I didn't know how much I needed that, how much I needed to know that however alone I felt I wasn't. I saw, once again, how easy it was to take all of the Jewish practices I had grown up with and transfer them into a new space. I need a Jewish community; I need a group who understands what makes me who I am. But that community can be anywhere. My history is not one story. It is a combination of Jewish pasts that make me who I am. Madrid could be home because I then understood how Jews were living around me and that there were Jews living around me.

Last year in school I had average grades. Nothing too special or to be proud of. Mostly B's and C +'s. However, as an all knowing 15 year old, I thought that these grades were good enough for a sophomore in high school. The year dragged on with the same grades, and if I was lucky I would sometimes get A's without studying. This was the life for me. Not studying for school, getting by with average grades, and getting to do whatever when I got home from school. But, in the last semester one of my grades became a failing grade. This had never happened before to me in my school career. My parents found out and gave me the whole "if you don't work hard in school then what college are you going to?" lecture. They had given me this lecture before, but not when I had a failing grade. I really understood what they were telling me this time. College, for me, was only two years away and I really felt the pressure now. I HAD to make my junior year count and that's what I'm planning to do. We'll see how it goes.

For the first time in my life, and I'm over 40, I got to know what it felt like to be in love with someone, and have them be in love with me in return. It was the first time I knew what it felt like to be part of an "us", the first time I could truly see my future with one person. Before this happened, I honestly didn't believe that I would ever know this feeling in my life. I might get close, but never really understand. And then, out of no where, it happened. Although, eight months later, it ended even more out of the blue than it started, this was so significant to me. Because it happened. That fear of dying without ever knowing the feeling of being in a reciprocal love relationship is over, because now I know. And though I think a piece of my heart will always be broken, I am forever grateful for the experience...

Encountered a major conversation with my dad, inspired by the book Being Mortal - about death, their will, power of attorney, where all of their info is...and what their health wishes are. This - out of anything - has had a huge impact on me. The way that my dad and mom set up their affairs, their household, taking care of themselves, and us - their utmost level of responsibility for us. And seeing how they set up their house, thinking about where they were in their lives when the set up these things...it was profound. I love them so much and am so broken up about their sun setting. And about making a decision about my mom, should my dad go first. Mortality - I am completely unprepared - but is anyone?

Just last weekend I did some accidental bucket listing. I went down to visit Allison and to meet her husband and step daughter. We went to hike to Amicalola Falls. Me, not knowing or caring, just wanting to spend time with my friend and bonus if it was among trees and nature, was not paying any attention where we were at. The park was busy and I jumped out of the car to grab a trail map. That's when I saw it. The sign inviting hikers of the Appalachian Trail to sign in before their journey. My eyes opened on an exhale, everything turned giddy. In all of my accidental travels I've never has something so purposeful meet me at the onset of a journey. And what a gift, from such a sweet sweet friend, to place me where I have wanted to be for over 18 years. Her not having any clue and me not knowing just how much being there would bring both gratefulness and inspiration... not to mention the beauty of the experience.

One of my closest friends was in a terrible car accident, her husband was killed and she had to have open heart surgery. I was terrified and overwhelmed as well as in shock for awhile. Very grateful my friend will recover and is alive but deeply sad for her loss and angry that her husband was taken from her. I am resentful and confused in regards to where God is in this and why such tragic things have to happen in life. Questioning God and spirituality a lot! Feel lost in that questioning. I am very inspired by her resilience and courage and the enormous outpouring of love she is receiving, that gives me hope.

There are two things that come to mind. My son's mental health problems and moving. I've felt alone, stressed, alienated, angry, jealous, powerful, fortunate, scared, excited and hopeful. I find strength in trying to make things better for my family. I am in awe that I am a hero to my children.

My mother went in the hospital and has ended up in a much weaker condition. Unfortunately, it has been an unpleasant revelation about my siblings, especially my sister. Our relationship has always had its ups and downs and I knew before that even when we were getting along well, she might be still holding big resentments against me but I didn't know that it was as bad as it turns out to be. I don't think I can ever trust her again. And that is sad.

I have had some injuries, and have had a great deal of time to reflect. It has made me think about getting older and mortality. I am a bit scared, but am trying to soldier on. I really wish I still belonged to a temple, but I don't. So this is my holiday activity.

In March, I attended a full week professional development workshop to become a Creating the Future Fellow. It profoundly affected how I view the process of getting from 'here' to 'there' in my personal and professional life. I'm not always good about applying it, but I've learned to work at identifying the conditions necessary for success and then creating the conditions for success, instead of just reaching for success. And, of course, defining what that vision is - personally and professionally.

In January, I got fired from a job that I had held— and in which I was successful— for seven years. I also hated it. I began searching for something different just a year into the job... but the recession, and my age, didn't help. I suffered through an abusive boss, and then through a passive-aggressive boss. I was in a creative position, and the culture was stifling and stressful. So, at age 56, I was jobless. I was shocked, devastated, and scared. So I went on unemployment, got insured through Obamacare (thank goodness for that), and started searching. In May, I landed a contract position as a web designer. I have lots of design experience and very little coding knowledge. There's nothing like on-the-job experience to accelerate a learning curve. And the culture is so supportive and people are kind. I got my confidence back. Now that the contract is about to end, I've begun working on my own business. So far, so good! I was hurt and resentful at first. I hear from a close associate and friend that my replacement is not nearly as invested as I was in building success. The passive-aggressive boss is still there, undoing the hard work of her employees at every turn. I had been so certain that upper management would have seen her as the problem. Now I am refreshed, renewed, inspired, and glad to go to work every day. It's hard work, and the pace is incredibly fast, but I love it. I'm still on shaky ground... contract work is not as permanent as I'd like... but I'd take this any day over where I was. It took being fired to understand, and start out fresh.

We just found that we're having a baby boy in February! We were very surprised, very excited, feeling super blessed. What an amazing change in our lives. In some ways this brings together one of the most painful parts of our lives thus far, the struggle to have a second child. And it came when we truly least expected it!!

I attended the Maine Jewish Conference at Colby College in Waterville. It was a joyous experience, to be with so many Jews at one time, and broaden my learning. I'm both grateful and inspired by the many workshops I attended and the spirituality that was shared.

I lived and studied in Tel Aviv for five months this year. I made incredible connections, both with people and with my faith. I grew in ways I cannot describe and believe that I have truly become a better person. I am so incredibly grateful and humbled to have had this wonderful experience, and hope that it does not make me jaded and instead inspires me to do and appreciate more.

Moving house again for half a year to the other side of the country, on my own and far away from friends and family. I was looking forward to live on my own again. My own appartement, my own rules. But soon after I realised I felt very lonely and I wanted to go home. I do not regret it, but I am never going to do this again. It made me realise I can be on my own for some time but I need people around me too.

This passsed year I voluteered on ambulances with MDA and the expierience was life changing. I realized I love the feeling I get when I know I'm directly changing someone life. I saw amazing things. I realiezed I can accomplish anything and I fell inlove with helping people.

It seems like all the work towards discovering my true self is finally surfacing. Still a work in progress but getting to a better place each year. Significant experience is healing from hurt or pain and learning to live a more fulfilled but simple life. Expressing pain to my partner and working towards finding my true voice without hurting or sacrificing someone else. Something seemed to have clicked a little better this past year and I have felt more awakened. Less attached to moments (a work in progress) but also more present and accepting of what is. Most of which occurred after the summer of a wonderful reflective time w my family. I am proud of letting go of relationships that were toxic and did not work without the need to apologize for it. While also accepting that it is not always personal. And if it is finding the true voice to communicate to make it better or move forward in peace. I feel relieved of things I was holding in for so long. And inspired to be more creative more in the moment. Being more brave to do more on my own at the same time staying connected to what really matters, my children their wholesome selves their spirit and health. My family and my relationship with my husband and the people in my life. I am grateful. For my children their brightness, they inspire me daily to be my true self to be in the moment. To love, myself, and just be.

I nearly left my school to move to a new one because of being under so much pressure from my line manager to improve to a level that seems unachievable. It made me reflect on what I needed from a manager and to be more open about my needs. It also gave me faith in my abilities as a teacher as the new school offered me a job immediately.

I'm relived to have shedded two toxic friendships in my life. Both were all take and no give. I don't miss either of them and I feel better for being without them.

I was hired for a job that I actually love. I am relieved and grateful. But worried that it'll slip through my fingers at any minute.

I had to let go of my daughter. It has given me relief. But my soul aches with sadness and my heart is broken. I can not be with the person she is today... I question if my heart is like Pharoah's, for when I think of her in my life, I just get panicked..and I have no desire to be with her. I love her...love her as I have never loved before..or probably will in the future...but I can't trust her or believe the things she says to me...there is no meaning in physically or emotionally being with someone like this... I am no longer a mommy..or a mom....it is a huge loss...

This year I moved across the country from San Francisco to New York City. Though this wasn't my first cross-country move, it was so symbolic for me to start over again. NYC has been my fresh start with my career, my relationships, and how I treat myself. Though I have only been here 9 months, I feel as if I have grown up more in these 9 months than my previous 27 years. I fell in love, had my heart broken, bounced back. I loved my new role, hated it, and bounced back. I loved myself, I doubted myself, and bounced back. New York has taught me about resilience. It has taught me that there are always better things ahead than what we leave behind.

Lot of important things happened this year. I think the most significant experience I had in 2015 was becoming an independent freelance writer full time. It's still new; I only committed myself to the self-employed life around three months ago in June. Unfortunately, my decision to go independent was not an independent decision at all. Rather, my choice was a result of being let go from a very lucrative position I held with a tech company in Seattle for the first half of the year. Luckily, that overpaid but short-lived job allowed me to save more money than I've been able to as an adult, meaning the transition was less of a leap into cold water and more of a hazy float on a lily pad (made of money, naturally)... But I said I would stick to the freelance life for six months to see if it suited me, and so far, it's been one of the best decisions I've made in my adult life. #happyaccidents

I got married. It wasn't a real wedding, per se, as we drove out to Vegas with my sister in tow, got a marriage license on a Saturday (there was actually a small line!) and went to a drive-thru chapel. It was... crazy. Hilarious. Exciting. I shed a few tears, almost lost my husband's ring on the side of his driver's car seat (you know where), and then we got upgraded to a huge suite with a jaccuzzi at the Caesar's Palace hotel. Did I think this is how my wedding would be? Fuck no. Would I do it again? Fuck yeah. Now I have been non-actively planning my "real" wedding and... We decided against it. Why spend half of our emergency savings on something we already did? You know? Part of me feels sad that my dad will never walk me down the aisle... But at least I am married to the love of my life and we can spend this money on an amazing honeymoon (and kids!)

I changed jobs. So far I am not happy with the work although the patients are good. I have kept an interest in the prison system, but I am glad to no longer be there. Ellen's retirement looks interesting for our family. It has me a bit jealous. She is around more, which is strangely both good and bad. I enjoy getting to know Gracie more, but Ellen might be nosing in a bit.

The most significant experience of my year would have to be moving to Alaska - which is pretty funny having read my answers from last year when i said that I wouldn't move off the east coast. A year ago the idea of moving to AK hadn't even crossed my mind. The drive from PA to AK was definitely inspirational. The experience has been amazing and wonderful and I would say that I have been and continue to be inspired. Sitting here writing this answer in Upstate NY, having been away from AK for a week now, I really miss it and can't wait to go "home" tomorrow. I am really excited to see what the winter brings. I know that I'm still probably in the honeymoon phase, but it's great right now

I left my job of ten years. I am relieved in knowing that I no longer have to constantly struggle with the competing priorities of work and home. I am inspired by the other mothers I have met with similar circumstances who share my values. And I'm grateful that my kids have embraced having me around more. My whole family has benefited from this change.

I am so angry that my Dad is sick. He's so wonderful and a great person. Why why why

After being moved from pre-kindergarten to kindergarten I asked to receive additional training in a teaching philosophy that the school I work for has been interested in. I completed the training at an accelerated rate and am now acting as point person for the school in training and implementing this philosophy. It has transformed my approach to teaching and has provided me with a new confidence in my role at school. I am relieved at how it has been accepted and the experience has been eye opening when relating to my fellow teachers. I am grateful to my administrators for allowing me to embark on this journey and I am inspired to continue growing in my career.

I got my first "real" teaching job this year. It is my own classroom, my own students, my own accountability. After years of working towards this goal it feels so amazing to finally be here.

I separated from my husband, intending to divorce. Believed there was no chance at reconciliation. I was pregnant. We moved back in together a few months ago. I didn't want to do the pregnancy and new baby alone. Now I am seeing there are still problems. I feel grateful we reconciled but not sure what the future holds for this relationship. I feel crushed and overwhelmed by our problems. But it is hard to imagine separating when I know how hard it was last time. We have three kids and the night we told my daughter he was moving out was heart breaking. Plus we have financial problems and childcare issues will make that worse if we separate.

My boyfriend of over two years moved out without telling me while I was visiting my best friend on the other side of the country. Although he had been communicating normally by text while I was gone, he failed to pick me up at the airport when I returned. Instead, he was using my car to finish putting his things in storage. (I know this because he left the receipt, along with the access code, in the glove compartment. He left his Gmail and Google Drive open on my computer, where I could easily have deleted all his important files and alienated important people. (I won't lie, the though crossed my mind. As my friend pointed out, he knew he was doing something terrible and wanted to be punished for it.) But because I'm not a vindictive child, I merely signed him out, put the storage receipt in the box of his possessions that he had left behind, and gave him a deadline to pick up the last of his stuff. I haven't seen or spoken to him since then. As the anger has burned itself out, I am left with a sense, not of loss--I wouldn't have wanted to marry someone capable of such cowardice--but of absence. At this time last year, my life was fuller; now it has holes. Literal ones, like the empty closet and vacant corner where his desk once was. And figurative ones, like the children we will never have and the home we will never buy. Yet, at the same time, that hollowness brings a sense of potential and relief: I have space now to grow, whereas before I felt profoundly stuck. I chose to be the bigger person, and now I am free.

I bought a house with my now fiancé. The process was scary, frustrating, exciting, overwhelming, etc. I am excited to start he next phase of our lives together. I am very grateful that Marc and I are together.

I raised a grievance with my employer. Has left me tired.

One of those major "blow-ups" I had feared might come of my daughter's decision to have a baby did occur. It was an extremely painful three weeks of estrangement and wondering if I would have a relationship with my granddaughter. It did resolve, and there have been several other episodes - a few intense but short-lived, some minor and easily glossed over. On the whole it's been relatively peaceful, but our history makes it hard for me to trust the calm. One outcome was that I changed churches after several years of soul searching. Attending the old one had been a struggle for some time, and I'd mostly come to terms with it, but it was also where my daughter and her "other" grew up. I couldn't face all the happy grand-baby talk or questions, and decided to change. The church change has been very positive. I am much more involved because it it very close to home, I had a friends already attending there, and the ministry activities are more suited to my schedule and "style." Grateful for this outcome. Another outcome was having to realize that, if necessary, I would and could live without my granddaughter. It had been such a short time, and she was new to my life. Now, it would be much harder because we are so bonded, and I miss her after only a few days of not seeing her (just schedule stuff, not "issues"). Because of the minor skirmishes that disrupted our relationships from time to time, I learned I would find a way for to manage the loss. My real concern would be for her well-being, and I am the most stable force in her life.

This was just a few weeks ago. I had the opportunity to join a friend in Paris for a week. She had rented an apartment so my lodging was free. My whole life I had always planned on travelling but due to having a child and finances, it has taken many years to begin to travel beyond the continental US. I've done quite a bit of that and enjoyed in immensely. The week in Paris was amazing. It was wonderful to be able to spend some quality time with a good friend but also to spend a large amount of the trip exploring the city solo. It definitely inspired me to do more of this. I am already looking ahead to a 50th birthday trip to Ireland. I am absolutely grateful to my friend for the opportunity and inspired for the future.

I retired. I'm happy, fulfilled, scared, confused, joyful... A new beginning with all the joy and challenge associated with new beginnings.

My 13 year old son with autism moved into a children's group home for children with autism. It breaks my heart to not see him every day, but he is doing well and is happy when I visit him.

My Grandfather passing away. He was incredibly an important and spiritual figure for me. I miss him every single day. I hope he is with Grandma. x

Almost exactly a year ago, my significant other and I left Boston and started driving across the country. We didn't know where we were going to live, and we didn't have jobs, but we just started going. I am so grateful to have put myself through that experience and was open to whatever would come. Living in a new part of the country has been such a positive experience.

This year, I confronted my sister about our violent and dysfunctional relationship as children. I yelled at her and made distance between us, and set some boundaries. I am both relieved at having my feelings out and hear by her and my parents, and I am also sad that I feel so disconnected from her.

my mom got very, very sick this winter. she'd been not well for a long time, but it got really bad, compounded by her breaking her shoulder in february. i had to move back home and basically become her full-time caretaker. it was frustrating - i'd just graduated and was looking for positions in my field, and i had to put all of that on hold for nine months while she got better. i resent that it happened, but i don't resent her, i don't think. i'm grateful she's doing better, even if it's still not as well as we'd hoped.

I was let go from my teaching position this year. It has inspired all sorts of effects, good and bad, across my whole life. The bad is that I feel a great deal of despair much of the time. I have felt worthless, talentless, and hopeless in different combinations at different times. People whom I trusted, friends I counted on, have abandoned me, or worse, told me that they can't see me doing anything besides what I had been doing. The good: my family has been very supportive and my immediate family has done a lot to help me understand my priorities. My daughters don't care what I do as long as I'm a good father. Many of my friends have tried to help me and continue to support me through my journey. My former students are reflecting my teaching back on to me. I have a lot of support and my heart is full of gratitude. A friend of mine calls this process "the autopsy" because it tears you apart, it reorganizes your priorities and helps you understand what is important all the way down to your identity. Everyone tells me this is leading to bigger and better things. I have to trust them.

I spent the last 6 months preparing for the fire captain's exam. I am 3 days away from taking the assessment center. I have learned much about discipline and dedication and compromise. I have grown as a leader; I have distilled my leadership philosophy down to 3 words: 1. Safety 2. Happiness 3. Success of the team.

I got pregnant and gave birth to our first child. It's changed everything and nothing, at the same time. My body is very different - loose belly, stretch marks, more tired muscles in my arms and back from holding and nursing her. My priorities have changed somewhat, as has my regular routine of getting through the day. I'm working part time now and planning to go back full time in the spring - my view of my career is very different. Before she was born I was extremely focused on my career, and now it's less important as I spend more time focusing on parenting. And yet I'm not as changed as many folks told me I would be. I am still the same person, same hangups, same insecurities, same passions and mood swings, same excitements and silly pleasures. I am still passionate about my career and happy to put her in child care so I can get back to work.

I finished my doctorate in just three years. I am grateful I have a thoughtful and helpful husband. He was essential in being able to complete all this work in such a short period of time. I am also grateful that I have the organizational skills, determination, and ability to work so hard and stay focused. I know not everyone can do this, but somehow I did. I am inspired that if I can do that, I can do other very difficult challenges.

I gave birth to my daughter. I feel incredibly grateful and blessed. She has added so much joy to our family. I love her giggle and her smile and her chunky thighs. It feels wonderful seeing her and her brother together. With her I'm so appreciative of life. Watching her, her brother, and our dog offers glimpses of perfection and pure love and happiness.

In the past year, I had the most significant romantic relationship of my life. While it ended, and I feel its loss, I feel a deeper belief in the possibility of love in my life than I did one year ago. And that is quite powerful.

This year I chose to resign my 9-5 life and go at it alone as a consultant and concentrate on my studies. I am feeling blessed and relieved that I am able to do this and to have such amazing support from friends, family and colleagues. It's amazing yet terrifying at the same time. It is an odd feeling to have so many people come out to support this effort - it's made me feel very connected and appreciated. Significant boost to believing in myself. It's hard not to believe in myself when so many already believe in me!

I can't think of any one significant thing this year. There have been small things, marginal changes for both good and bad, but nothing huge stands out. The only exception is recent, in being given the money for a divorce.. When I will actually do that is a different question. I'm grateful for the money, or will be life changing. I'm sad that it's the only thing that's been significant was not something *I* did

I got divorced after 18 years of marriage..... It's hard encapsulate this in one emotion - resentment, rage, relief, all of the above. But also fear, shame, inspiration, hope and gratitude. Fearful for a future without family or a partner, shame for failing myself, my partner and my marriage, inspired by the stories others have shared with me, hope that the next 18 years don't have to be like the last 18, and gratitude for new friends, new experiences, new adventures and new relationships.

I am grateful that this summer Emmochka stayed with us for a month and then Masha joined us for several days, so I had good summer. It affected me by showing that I still can have good time.

Co-Chairing the RSC at my synagogue. We put in a ton of work but it paid off. I'm grateful to have worked with such a committed, bright, warm, fun group. I miss them.

I was given the opportunity to change careers and become a state trooper. It affected me, but I am still the same person. Being away from my wife for 27 weeks at the state police academy recently made our marriage stronger. We argue less since deep down we both know I could get killed every shift I work. Overall it's been a very rewarding job so far and I'm grateful not to be relegated to a desk job. Being out on the road is awesome.

I finally got a new job and quit my old soul-killing hell-job. It's amazing how quickly one adapts to changes like this one, and it is quite possible to come home just as tired from a good job as a bad one. But in the main, I'm thrilled.

I lost a lot of weight through healthier eating and regular exercise. I am thrilled, but also I'm frustrated because I have been on a plateau with my weight for months now. I hope to lose a lot more weight in the coming year.

I met some wonderful new friends who share my geeky interests and who inspired me to take time to be more creative and take care of myself

My daughter got married. Yesterday. It was complicated. For a start, I'm actually her stepmother, but her father and I have long since separated and her birth mother was absent due to alcoholism during much of my daughter's childhood, so I found myself in the position of default primary parent. It was hard then, having very little parental respect or recognition, and it was hard yesterday, when my daughter's "real" parents were less than nice to me. And yes, I was resentful. I kept it to myself, expressing it quickly to my partner, who squeezed my hand and said calming things. But, and it's a big one. My daughter showed her love and appreciation to me. My daughter asked me to give a toast. My daughter loved my toast. And I was there for my daughter. There's also this. My S-i-L thinks the sun rises and sets on my daughter, and of course, I think he's right. Bot kids are kind, honest, incredibly decent and fun to be with, and I couldn't be more proud of both of them. There was so much anxiety and so much anticipation for the wedding, that after, I feel exhausted and somewhat let down, and a bit shocked that I've reached a place in my life to have adult children with their own lives.

In the past year I was in a out-patient program at Laurel Hospital. This was a wake up call to me to take life by the horns and do it!!!!! I started planning out my days and making things happen instead of being reactionary I tried to be proactive. Have I been perfect? No, definitely not. But it is on my radar. And I want to embrace life and not suffer anymore. I am striving to wake up at 5:00am to get a jump start on my day. It hasn't happened yet, but it will. I know it.

I recently lost one of my closest friends, whom I knew since I was sixteen. He had pancreatic cancer. On the day he died I wrote a letter expressing the many sentiments I felt. I emailed the letter to a mutual friend to read to him, but it was too late. I live on the East Coast and he was in Dallas. I went to see him the month before and knew we were saying goodbye. My brother did read the letter at his memorial service. A month later another old friend died. And so it goes- We grieve and try to make peace with their gifts to humanity. We keep part of our loved ones with us and carry on.

I lost a friend from my community to cancer this year. It rocked the community and me, and it's been really hard for me to accept that it happened. I've questioned G-d and wondered how life can be so unfair. I honestly don't know if I'll ever come to terms with it. However, seeing the way the community came together was one of the most amazing and inspiring things I've ever witnessed. People came for the funeral and shiva who had never met him or his wife; they came because they were part of this great community. I am grateful that this community exists, that I am a part of it, and that it was there for my friend as she grieved her husband.

This year I got a tenure track position at the university where I have made my home. It has changed how I see myself and what I am capable of. Mostly, I have enjoyed greater confidence in myself and in my work. I had my work published and I am thriving in this particular academic environment, one that I am invested in helping to grow to its full potential as I grow.

My expertise is Geriatric Medicine. I have a friend who is in her 90's and who is failing and losing her sight. She is still living alone but has been on the waiting list for an excellent non-profit retirement community for two years. Recently we learned, by accident, not because the home notified us, that the retirement community plans major construction so they will not be taking anyone new for at least another year. Because of previous interactions with the CEO, I had misgivings about this particular place that I did not share with her family, because my friend was so enthusiastic about living there. Now, with little time, we are all trying to come up with a new place for her to live ... one that is not too far from everyone and that also is non-profit. The religious nature of this particular retirement community was certainly not reflected in their behavior towards the folks on their waiting list. Angry? Resentful? Betrayed? I am that and more, especially because I held my peace about what I knew about the CEO.

My father was diagnosed with Alzhemiers. I feel relieved to have the diagnosis as he was out of control and lost and we were all confused as to what had really been going wrong. When you have a dad who lies and cheats it is hard to know if that behaviour is exaggerated due to old age or if there really is a clinical issue. I was glad to know the issue that made his regular personality worse was indeed this disease, at least we can focus on how to help him and make these last years more comfortable for all of us. In the beginning I was resentful, it's hard to embrace a person when you have known then one way, especially a parent, and you see them unable to remember, to be strong, to interact from a place of parental love, duty, relationship. It's just hard to watch a person fight a battle they sort of, kind of, know they are fighting. I really have been inspired- to talk to myself about the disease and remind myself it is not him, the disease has inspired compassion and forgiveness.

One of the most significant experiences of the past year was the death of my stepfather. He always lived in the moment. This was often good as he was so full of life. Often this was not as good as he didn't always seem to think of the ramifications of his actions. Still, I am forever grateful that he was in my (my family's) life for about 35 years. His death left me thankful that I had a chance to have a second dad. It also filled me with sadness, as I will truly miss him.

It might seem ordinary, but moving into this apartment has been significant in several ways. It means we're more settled here, and we're creating more of a community. I'm deeply grateful to have found a good place, to have survived the buying and moving process, and to feel settled. That provides a deeper sense of stability to this new life and helps me envision our future more clearly. The apartment is sort of the concrete, physical manifestation of a broader process of building a life here.

I was suspended from college before starting my senior year and lost an important and prestigious campus job. I'm still angry but I feel unburdened. I think that some job prospects might be looking up with all this spare time on my hands.

I have two jobs. A friend and colleague left her position and took a job where I also work. In here old job she was my immediate supervisor and also mentor. I miss the relationship we had and am trying to navigate the relationship with the new leader. Her style is different and more direct, something that I am not used to. I did not realize what a big change this would be until it happened. I also did not realize the importance of this relationship until it was shifted. We will still see one another only not so frequently.

I quit two jobs and am starting a third tomorrow. I've increased my salary by 50% in a year, and I'm basically where I would expect to be - or better - considering how old I am. Even though I fucked around, I caught up. I'm grateful that this is a true thing, and grateful to my past self for doing the work. I'm sad and a little scarred from the tough time I had at the second job. I'm incredibly relieved to be in a space where I should be able to pay off my student loans. I basically achieved a major goal -- so that I can work towards another major goal.

I had a serious health scare. A ct scan was done on my chest and an 8mm nodule was found in The right lobe of my lung. The first surgeon I saw wanted to remove a lobe immediately. The second opinion I got from a surgeon at MSK said it was not much of anything until it is more solid. He wouldn't attempt to remove it because he wouldn't be able to find it. He ordered a re scan and follow up with him. It affected me profoundly- the prospect of a serious surgery loomed large for 3 months, and I worried a lot. I am really grateful for those who suggested I get a second opinion at Sloan, and for those who prayed for me and sent positive thoughts and healing love. I learned a lot from this experience, including the obvious, and what worrying does to my blood pressure. It spiked to 176/110, the highest it's ever been. Now I have to address that- another opportunity to save my life. I believe in miracles.

I passed mij driving test, graduated high school and got accepted to Applied Psychology studies in Eindhoven! It was a fantastic year for me and i am really grateful for everything that happend to me this year.

My grandmother fell and hurt her hip. I was greatful that the injury would only require a short rehab. I have invested more time to be with her.

I had the opportunity to serve on a criminal jury in August. I realized then how very important our criminal justice system is in protecting both the offender and the public. It truly took all 12 of us to come to a fair verdict and then again it took the collective conscience of the 12 to then over ride what the law says to give to offender a fair and just sentence, not just for him but for the community in which we live.

My wife and were displaced from our home 14 months ago because a contractor did not conduct the work in a manner that would protect th adjacent apartments. We were living as urban nomads, until we settle in a furnished studio apartment in Brooklyn. We are very fortunate to have good friends. We remained in good spirits taking things one day at a time. The experience of the last year has instilled in us a new, deeper appreciation of home. We have tried not to be resentful, and have looked on the positive side. As a couple this experience has brought us closer. We have a lot to be thankful for, we will be going back home. There are many people in this world, too many, that lost and have no home. Who have lost loved ones and community. We have to be thankful for what we have. We must reach out to those who have been permanently displaced and are homeless.

I taught my first Ageless Grace class this year. Very grateful to have done it, very inspired to do more, relieved that I could perform and inspire the participants. Frustrated that I am not able to teach more

My dad died and it was the worst thing that has ever happened to me. I feel like I've discovered a new breed of sadness and loneliness that I never knew existed. He was sick for a while before he died, and watching him become frail and unable to move was excruciating. Watching him be unable to eat or drink or eventually close his eyes was unbearable. Feeling that he didn't want to face death and couldn't talk to me or my sister about death or his life or his wishes was heartbreaking. I was there when he died and I am grateful for that but I am also scarred by it. It's an incredibly painful thing to go through and it feels like there is no relief or remedy for it. I miss him so much and I still can't really comprehend that he is gone.

I was a top candidate for an interesting job. I didn't get the offer, but I was proud of how I handled the experience, for the most part. I was inspired to see myself differently within my profession. And it gave me hope for the next chapter.

I got to be with all three of my children at the same time, as well as my mother. It will most likely be the last time we're all together. I am grateful beyond words.

This past summer I helped out at a nursing home where the residents had memory problems. Every time I walked out, the residents had smiles on their faces. The staff was extremely thankful for my help with activities when no one else came.

I quit my 7 year tenure at Sargent & Lundy, LLC, picked up my life in Chicago and moved to Denver. Am I grateful? The job is great, I'm learning a lot, the people at the office are supportive and great motivators. Denver? I think I might hate it. I go back and forth but I'm finding myself becoming increasingly more resentful at the offerings of this city. All the benefits of Denver are based on beer, craft beer, microbreweries, or weekend getaways into the mountains. I miss my friends and family and my full gaggle of nieces and nephews... but technology and flights have provided some leniency on that front. I miss good food, I miss good shopping, I miss EASY shopping, I miss good drivers, I miss the pristine city of Chicago, I miss music, I miss art, I miss dance, I miss a lot of things. Regardless of all that, I still do believe this was a good professional move on my part and probably a good move on a personal level as well. The latter part... I'm still trying to find proof of that. We'll wait and see.

I was in a car crash. It was largely detrimental because now I'm vaguely certain that I'll die in another car crash at any time.

I got fired from a job that I was miserable at. It made me feel relieved and grateful that I no longer had to work for a boss that didn't understand what I was trying to accomplish.

In the past year, I graduated from High School. Most of my friends have always been a year older than me, so this past year was difficult. Lonely, and trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life (college), I felt like I had to grow up and become more independent, like they were doing as first year college students. In graduating high school, I didn't feel as much significance as they did because I had already felt a little bit of their emotions. However, I still went through the same terror and excitement about leaving home. More than anything, I felt nostalgic for years gone by. I knew I would miss being so physically close to my family and my childhood. Now, I am into my first month and a half of college. I am having the time of my life, yet I don't feel at all like my childhood is gone. In fact, I feel like I am the best student I have ever been, and like my teenage years are here more than ever. At home, I was forced to act mature to adhere to my parents expectations and logical reasons why I should. Here, I am being the most spontaneous I have ever been: going to PCB randomly, partying, and hanging out with my friends. I am still the careful, mature person I was, but now I have to freedom to create my own idea of how I should be.

Another year of job transition. This time it was a total career change out of journalism and into government work. I'm relieved in that I hope this will finally mean steady employment after nearly 20 years of downsizing in my previous industry, but i admit I don't have the passion for the new work that I did with my previous career. And the learning curve for the new job was only made harder by a hazing type training process in the local office. But, I'm off new hire probation and have some semblance of job security, at least for now--and that gives me hope and some peace.

I was diagnosed with leptomeningeal carcinoma. A terrifying prognosis, but it has prompted me to live more genuinely. I now say yes to things I want to do and am more likely not to say yes out of feelings of guilt or duty. It also prompted an overseas trip to Italy with my 9 year old son.

I am still working at my current job with VR, in which I've been very unhappy - for almost as long as I've been at the job. However, with the last incident with my boss, in mid-August, I finally detached emotionally. Before this incident, I had this feeling if I kept working hard, if I kept improving things, if work was still getting done even short staffed, that somehow I'd be able to prove myself and hat my boss would finally tell me I'm doing a good job and give me more substantial work and I'd finally gain some respect. This is never going to happen, no matter how hard I work. I'm resentful at management, but I'm relieved that I've finally hit this point where I realize I just need a better job - one where I'm not consumed, miserable, and stressed out. I'm comfortable with how much I make, and if I continue to increase how much I make, I'm ok financially. I'm inspired by my change of perspective on this situation, and hopeful that I'll start a new job soon.

Job instability and change for both Alex and I. The intensity of changing positions, short-term engagements, the job search, competitive interviews, etc. Finally got a position and found my supervisor to be immediately challenging to work with. Then Alex lost her job and the cycle of instability started over. At first I felt very stressed and confused. Why was this happening? Couldn't we just have a gentle period now? I see now that everything really has been working out all along. Our lives are very blessed and I feel grateful.

I left the working world for an indefinite period of time. I knew I wanted to leave my particular job and find something part-time and/or with less responsibility so I could manage the whole work/life thing better, but when I found out I was pregnant with my second child we looked at our financial reality, and even staying with my current best-I-could-earn-job I would be paying to work after the cost of FT childcare for two. My husband earns over twice what I did so it made sense for me to bow out of the workforce to take care of the kids for a few years. It's a very odd place to be. A lot of people want to talk about how lucky I am, but being a "stay at home mom" (a term I hate but I haven't found a better substitute) is not what I want to do. I miss adult interaction and I miss using the rest of myself. Being pregnant with a toddler while I try to figure out how to live like this has made it harder too. I am tired and hormonal and just not on my A game. Ha, of course I write this at 2 days past my due date sooo :/ I am scared of what my days will look like after the first few weeks postpartum, and the family and friend support I've scheduled runs out. I'm not sure how I will run after the toddler while still physically healing, newborn in tow. But I am hopeful that after a few months we will begin figuring out a "new normal." I hope beyond hope that this new baby will be a good sleeper!

I started my own business 18 months or so ago, which exceeds the year in the question, but I did t start treating it like a business until recently. Today... The last 18 months have been an interesting learning experience though and while no 1 thing stands out it makes me realize that I need to be present in my life.

Right now, as I sit in the living room of the apartment I live in with Emanuel and Fabrizio, the day is beautiful. There is a man working on the roof and I have camote boiling in the kitchen. "Ay Vamos" by J. Balvin is playing, and Roly's wedding was last night. There is a beautiful dark purple Volkswagen van for sell at the mercado central. I fantasize about buying it, supping it up, and driving up to San Francisco. Moving to Trujillo Peru to live and work. I recently celebrated 1 year here, and I can't describe all of the challenges I've encountered, but also the great things that have happened to me and the people I have meet. Being fired from the NGO that I originally came here to work for, but then the same week getting offered another position (CAS Coordinator) at the school I work at was probably the most significant experience. It gave me the opportunity to prioritize "things". I realized that I was focusing so much on other stuff, that I wasn't giving myself the time and the quality that I needed..that I deserved. I am grateful for the people that I meet, and am still very close with, through the NGO. However, I am still kind of resentful towards MaryBeth for firing me in an unprofessional way and for her being immature about it. But thanks to her firing me, I've advanced at El Cultural, and only plan on advancing further, until I can't get any higher. At this point, I'm also considering going back to school for my MA in International Education Management in a couple of years.

I was broke and had to borrow money from mom. Felt humiliated. Got real busy and doing excellent now.

I was able to reconnect with my meditation practice in March & May and again in early Sept. through instruction and connection with my spiritual teacher, Lama Drimed, after many false starts, attempts, painful absences and confusions as well as hurt feelings on my part. So happy about all that!

The conclusion of my marriage and the decision to walk away from a destructive relationship that was draining me unto the point of death. Yes, I am grateful and relieved that G-d allowed me to reach the decision, even though I knew that He hated divorce. But my husband left me years ago emotionally and I was just hanging on -- to nothing. With the decision finally made my energy is returning and I can serve my G-d much more readily, not being tied to my husband's demands and feigned disabilities.

I feel my life is filled with significant events, the result of being part of a large, extended family, friend and professional connections. Add to this all the information gleaned from the internet and social media, and I am swimming in information about people's lives. Having written this, however, I think I have been most struck this year by learning of people's health issues, which makes me grateful for my good health as well as my family's. Something else that comes to mind are transitions that people are experiencing or avoiding or denying. More on this later.

Well, there were two: I found our that I had thyroid cancer, and I got married. The first experience has left me grateful and relieved that I'm going to live another year after the surgery and radioactive iodine treatment. But I am always tired. Hopefully, that will get better. More happily, Jonathan and I got married. And it's the culmination of all my fondest wishes. I got everything I wished for.

The most significant experience that happened to me in 2015 was our family reunion. All of the surviving children of my parents were there. Also, all of the grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren with the exception of one great-grandchild. The anticipation of the event was the best part. Was everyone really going to come? Would we manage to all do our part to get the food ready, the games organized, and get along without anyone becoming too obnoxious or drunk? It went so well that we are planning another one in three years. I was grateful to witness the willingness of everyone to participate and felt that I really had a family that cared about each other.

My ex-husband died in March. We had not been in touch except occasionally. Thankfully, the last time we corresponded it was cordial. Every now and then, I would check on his FB page to see what he was up to. I was always hoping to find that he was in a new relationship. He had moved to a place he clearly loved, and seemed to be liking his work (unusual for him, in my experience). I saw in February that he had not posted anything since October, and that troubled me. I googled him to see if anything would turn up. I found a "go fund me" campaign set up by his friends to help pay for his medical expenses. He had been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. I had no other information. I reached out to his boss, someone I know, but received no answer. A few weeks later, a mutual friend emailed me to tell me he had died. I was devastated. I couldn't (and still can't) stop thinking about his last days. Was he alone? Did he need anything? Was he in pain? At peace? Although we were not married anymore or even friends, I loved him deeply and always will. I feel like a widow, and one that has to mourn alone because I was not a part of his life, his family or friends anymore. I still carry grief with me as a constant companion. I hope he found some of what he was looking for in his life. I have. I am happily living with the man I love, and he makes me incredibly happy. We have a good life for which I am grateful. I suppose the big lesson I learned is that you can feel sad to the core but still acknowledge your own good fortune, and that you never, never stop loving someone. May his memory be for a blessing.

I have survived. This may not seem like the answer to the spirit of the question, but for me it fits. 15 months ago I lost my 16 year old son to suicide. The grief has been unbelievable. No one should have to go through this much pain. It has, at many times, been unbearable. It is still so very hard, but I have somehow survived. I am still here. I can talk about it. I can function in life. I can have fun. I can go to work. I can parent my 14 year old son. I can be a good partner. Somehow I have made it here. I am grateful. To the universe. To my partner. To my therapist. To my friends who have not shrunk back. I am not yet inspired. I don't feel like I am outside of anything enough to say if I am relieved, but I celebrate this day. And I always, always miss my son.

My husband and I are ending our marriage. I can't live with his addiction, lies, and verbal abuse any more. I have given him many, many, many years of patience, support and love, in hopes that he would get the help he needed to return to his true self. This is very fresh--final decision came only a couple of weeks ago--so I am angry about his behavior and scared about my financial future. I do have hope that extricating myself from this relationship will lead to greater health and the capacity for joy again in my life.

One of the most significant experiences this year was starting my new job as Learning & Development Manager at this entertainment marketing &production agency in Burbank. Somehow, I landed a job that was a bit above and beyond probably what I should have been offered - most of my colleagues were getting similar jobs but at the specialist level - but I sold myself extremely well, pushed out of my comfort zone, and fortuantely the chemistry and fit between myself and my current employer was great according to my boss. I was excited, scared, nervous, grateful for this opportunity for so many reasons. 1 - Ihad been in a weird rut as a 31 yr old in grad school grdining it out but with little financial success or income, and it was really weighing me down because I have a wonderful girlfriend whom Iwanted to start building a life wifh, and save money towards getting a ring etc. -- This job and the nice salary (about 12-17k more than what I was actually expecting for my first L&D or OD job) gave me nice boost of confidence and that "provider" feeling that had been missing and that was weighing me down. 2 - I am most interested in application, and Iwas getting the sense that although really making me a badass and "expert" in terms of knowledge in my field, the PhD training was lacking in application and wisdom. --- I knew that this job would be a kick in the nuts to see how Learning & Org Dev in a company, and all of the things Ihad been learning about, actually were perceived, received, and integrated within a growing company. Being part of a small team and a smaller org (300 ees), I knew that this job would be high responsibility, high impact, and high challenge (because no one there had ever had or likely even heard of Learning & Org Development) 3 - My boss is completely awesome. She's progressive, willing to take risks and try new things, encourages me to be creative and have fun, build relationships, and always has really great feedback for me. I am lucky to have a great boss that is in tune and obsessed with human development and making work an amazing place. With a great boss in place who really cares about my own growth, development, and success is wonderful, and Ireally feel like Iam super lucky to have this opportunity which really is going to make me a supreme badass and launch my career with a big bang. The only thing that sucks is the commute - shoot me. And this makes it tought to make progress on my PhD stuff because Iam in traffic for 2+ - 3 hours a day. And damn. That sucks. That is like a day and a half of potential productive or restorative time This has been my biggest challenge so far and makes me pretty tired and drained, while feeling a tad guilty about not making progress on my PhD. Eek! But the pros outweight the cons for sure, and Iam grateful for this opportunity - for my own growth and badassery and having my comfort zones stretched, for financials reasons and being able to save, invest, and build Kat and I's future, and do some cool work!

I got engaged last weekend! It's something I've been looking forward to for a long time. I was basically in shock and didn't react the way I ever thought I would. I felt appreciated, loved, and so excited for the future!

I am experiencing a flare-up of a disabling chronic illness, which has affected almost every activity of my life - my ability to work, my ability to socialize, my ability to get out into the world. I am not very grateful for the illness, but am grateful for the many blessings that I still have that make life rich and amazing - loved ones, the beauty around me and my ability to see it, and to hear music, and feel emotions, and my cozy home.

My life partner, husband, started chemotherapy for his blood cancer that has been smoldering for many years. I remembered in detail when my first husband suddenly became ill and died. All the feelings and emotions absorbed my thinking. Tears and more tears. Then we both relaxed and have moved forward with joy and hope. He buys the full season tickets to the Chamber concerts in summer and winter. 5 months later his health is slowly getting better. The little cancer buggers are being chewed away consistently. There's no cure but I'll be happy when he's on a maintenance dose. Cancer does take over your life if you let it. We try not to let it!

Company being sold. Huge sense of uncertainty, helplessness. Deep longing to know my purpose. How do I participate in the greater good.... Secretly, I hope for a fabulous package to get out and do that which is yet revealed to me. That somehow a severing by "other" would make it ok for a life change of that magnitude. I'm in remission a year as of June. I don't want to squander a renewed chance at life, yet I have lead feet.

A significant experience that happened to me this year is I got my first job. I'm grateful I finally have a job that gives me money so I can buy dumb stuff.

I got to spend 3 days in Ocean City NJ with my sister, her 3 yr old twins, my dad, and my grandparents. It was such a wonderful time to relax and reconnect. Bringing the little ones to the places I loved as a little kids too made my heart full. Also, given the age of my grandfather, 91, and his precarious health, it just felt like I may not get many more chances for spending time with him. I'm so grateful for the time we do have. It just reminded me how lucky I am. One of the things I said in my 10Q last year was that i really wanted to spend more time with my family, I'm glad I got the chance to do so.

My daughter graduated from high school and my mother -in-law died. Both of these events have spurred feelings of deep loss, for sure. My mother-in-law was a sweet, sweet, funny woman; very low key in her expectations, but big in her love. I miss her terribly, and hope to keep her memory alive by channeling her example of patience and simplicity when I can. Vis a vis my daughter, her graduation and preparation for leaving home while exciting, is also sad in that she is no longer going to be a part of our day to day live. Both of these events also mark my passage into the next sphere of the life span which I resent and feel like I should be kicking and screaming against that adjustment, Baruch ha Shem, may I adjust gracefully.

We have made an offer on a piece of property to be used for retirement after years of talking about it. Above all it has made me apprehensive, terrified, I find myself grinding my teeth without knowing why until my husband pointed out the correlation between the loan, and the onset.

For the first time in 22 years, I lived "self-sufficiently" away from home. My entire life I've lived in one place, and even though I've travelled a fair amount, I've never really lived anywhere else. But for three months this past summer, I had my own apartment and my own job in a city 3000 miles away from where I grew up and go to school. I met people and made friends and explored the new place where I lived. It was one of the most rewarding and self-affirming experiences I have ever had.

I converted to Judaism in May after a year of study. It was the culmination of years of wishing to be Jewish, and along the way I've met some incredible people who have become great friends. I feel grateful, inspired to study more, and even relieved that I finally achieved something I never really believed possible.

I had some life changing events happen this past year. I was homeless; I was ill; I moved; I began a new job. I am relieved that the illness will come to an end in November. I had some very sympathetic friends who were there to help me out for which I am very grateful. I am back living with my mother who is 86. The distance to my job is 'commuteable'. While I know that it is a good thing for both my mother and me to support each other, the fact that I'm living back at home is hard to shake off. I'm happy that I have a job where I'm not doing 'duties' that devalue my education and training. I have 'downtime' where I can re-group to be my best for the population I serve. I feel appreciated by my colleagues, administration and my clientele. A goal for this year will to become proficient in Spanish. A large portion of the population is Hispanic, and in order to best help them (and me), I should be more familiar with the language.

I got a job with my friend working half time; it is perfect! I work from home, I do the work I'm good at and she manages the problems that come up… after my significant disability I did not think that I'd be able to find a job, so this is like a god send. Also my sister whom I love dearly moved away and I miss her greatly but she's coming back for a visit next week.

My babies were born on Dec. 4. I have been overwhelmed by almost every possible emotion other than boredom and depression.

This past spring semester of junior year, I studied abroad in Valencia, Spain. This experience was amazing and I have grown so much from my time there. I went pretty much knowing no one and left with amazing friends and memories. I faced challanges, whether it being airplane sickness, anxiety, tearing my acl and walking around on it for four months. I have learned how to preservere and keep it moving! I had to be flexible in my ways and adapt to the world and the people around me. I couldn't force my strict and bossiness behavior on these people whom I just met and them vice versa. We had to adjust and learn to coexist and form strong relationships, which I can happily say I did. There were moments were I might've lost it in my mind a bit but after a few deep breaths and the realization of how amazing this opportunity was, I would quickly snap out of it and just enjoy my time there. I am beyond grateful for this experience, having the drive to pursue it, my parents and aunt for helping to make it happen and all of my lifelong friends and memories that came out of it. I will forever look back on this time with a smile and what more can you ask for? The world is amazing and I truly do not understand any of it, but I know I want to try.

I quit the booze and discovered the teachings of the (shakyamuni) Buddha. I am so grateful and relieved that I have as my life was at points unmanageable and out of control.

getting the opportunity to try a new career. I am grateful for the opportunity and have high hopes that feeling relaxed at work will help the rest of my life.

A dear friend of mine committed suicide last month, which affected me deeply. I started my deep reflection then, so am all ready for the days of awe. I am very sad about what happened, and feel many emotions for her family, who have a long road ahead to recover from this. It has made me think about my priorities, how I spend my time on this earth, and what friends and family mean to me. I am trying to live life more intentionally, and more for today than I ever have before.

Firstborn graduated from college, and my mother was there with us. Many profound blessings in that moment: an intact family with healthy children able to make the most of great opportunities, and enjoy each other across the generations. Once I thought I did not have what it took to be a good mother, and that marriage was not for me. How lucky I was to be wrong!

I started treatment for a mental health concern. This was precipitated by a serious downturn in my mental state. Thank G-d nothing to bad happened to my life while I was especially ill, but I still feel like I'm picking up the pieces. For example I'm working on the same graduate school applications that I was supposed to submit last year.

I officiated at the wedding of Adam and Michael. Good good friends. I very very proud to have been asked and of how well I did. One day at work the leader noticed four members waiting to weigh in. There were three of us working. Leader said come there are three of us. Every one of the 4 members said "we are waiting for Peggy!" It was an amazing moment. Much loved leader but I realized I was also much loved. I needed that. Last night I joined a book group 14 years in existence. Every one of the members said how happy they were to have me there. I was told they don't accept new members easily. I was really on cloud nine.

I volunteered to teach a new Computer Programming course. I'm a math teacher, not a computer science teacher. I'm learning along with my students, and trying to stay just ahead of them. Its wicked fun, and inspiring. They're terribly clever and so engaged. It's a lot of fun for someone who's usually having to "bribe" the kids to want to learn the subject matter. =)

The significant event that happened to me was finding out that I had been screwed over by Dr. Koren. I was very angry when it first happened, but now I am thankful for going through that experience because it forced me to really think about what I am doing and where I am going in my life.

In January of 2015, I moved to Seattle, WA following a whirlwind 4 months of transition for me. I was let go from my job (which was extremely devastating), left the city I had lived in for five years, and traveled for a month in Costa Rica. I guess you could say I took a leap of faith and moved with my boyfriend up here after he received a job offer. I am grateful for this adventure and have fallen in love with this city. I have learned a lot about myself, in good ways and bad ways. Currently, I am struggling career-wise and finding it hard to discover passions within me that move and inspire me. I find myself questioning my career choices and my job here.

While walking back from a wonderful evening with friends in Istanbul, Aydin pointed out a sign for the Sakko suit company and explained that name was formed from a combination of the company's founders' names. That led to a discussion about a hypothetical name combination the first two letters of Aydin's name (Ay) and the first two letters of mine (La). Combined, this creates Ayla, which is both a Turkish name meaning "moonlight" and Hebrew name meaning "oak tree." And, with that, we had the first name of a future baby girl. The serendipity of it all sent shivers down my spine as it felt good to be one step closer to our future family.

I graduated with my Bachelor's Degree in Electrical Engineering. While I'm grateful that it's finally over, it's a bit irritating that I still haven't found a job with it yet after 4 months.

I started dating Andy. I ditched the worst person I'd ever dated (finally) and chose someone who was so much better in every way. He has changed my perspective on dating, and monogamy, and love, and friendship - and basically what a soul mate is. I've never felt safer and more loved. Or more sexually and emotionally satisfied. He holds me every morning and night in bed, he works out with me, can backpack with me, ski with me, Burn with me. I know choosing him this past year will only change me as a person for the better for the rest of my life.

My love had a positive FIT test. For about a week, we had to wait to find out if this was indicative of colon cancer. Our world turned upside down. He chose not to tell anyone, so it was just our private hell. Then he let our oldest daughter know because her husband might be able to give him professional advice. She waited with us in purgatory. Everything turned out ok. He was cancer free. Besides the unbearable thought of losing him, the brush with imagined death, keeping this quiet was a huge personal challenge. This is not how I cope with stress and uncertainty. But we pulled through, and I learned a new skill of silence under pressure.

oh gosh, I feel like there's been so many. Let me think... My Halifax trip- I'm very grateful that it happened and that I got the chance to explore and smell the ocean. ..I got into the MEd program. ! And most significantly, discovered that I didn't want to do research MA-style and had the strength and support to say no and let go. I was resentful for awhile and was being reactive, having things happen to me, and the experience of standing my ground and pushing back was fantastic for me. Another experience showing me the importance of my voice and how I can do what's right for me and not merely what "should" be.

After getting blackout drunk twice at the Eskews, I realized there were some things that needed to be addressed on a deeper level. I haven't had any more episodes like that since then with alcohol and haven't had 1 single bulimic episode since that time as well. I admitted to needing more healing from the inside out and I feel more relieved than ever about being in a safe and healthy place in life. I am so grateful for God's faithfulness and restoration in my life.

Took an amazing backpacking trip (3 days, 3 nights) in Shenandoah national park. I think I truly recognized for the first time how much I benefit from and need natural beauty in my life. I am grateful for the beauty and peace of that experience and I feel inspired to add more of it to my life.

I got pregnant and had a baby. My 3rd with a new partner at 40. I feel so happy and lucky but I wish I didn't care that my post partum body was changed as a result.

My spouse and I have been living together for several years and have been married for a year or so, but we decided to buy a house together; an economic melding of our lives that has been both fearful and exciting. We sold my little "bachelor bungalow" and found a nice spacious place in a nicer neighborhood, and have settled in and hung up our pictures and gone from living in "my" house to living in "our" house in a way that wasn't really possible in our previous place. Finding ways to make things "ours" instead of "theirs" and "mine" has been eye-opening, while still maintaining enough separation of space so that we each can have our own, private areas. It feels much less now like "making room for them" and much more like "making room for us" and that's been a reminder that I need to also make room for others in other spaces: in conversations, in online chats, even at work -- allowing others to speak and take ownership of shared space is important. Basically, I'm learning to share, and that's been both hard and incredibly rewarding.

This year has neen a huge one for me. I finished college, completed a culinary training program, moved to Brooklyn, got engaged with a huge celebration in Kolkata, and launched my own business. Each of these experiences alone could fill pages with reflections. It's been a lot - wonderful, scary, and momentous - with tons of ups and downs along the way. Looking back, I can fully see how I've ended up as overwhelmed as I currently am. There's been so much going on and I haven't given myslef the proper time to reflect and archive. I'm actually really grateful to the holidays for giving me a reason to stop and look back.

I had a miscarriage in November of 2014. It made me miserable for a while, especially coming close on the heels of my mother-in-law's death. It affected me in a lot of ways--I gave up running, I ate more, I retreated into myself for awhile. I'm not grateful, I don't suppose I'll ever be grateful, in the proper sense. I suppose sometimes it's a relief, only because if I had had the kid it would have been in June, and I started a job in December. I wouldn't have been able to stay on it long enough to get FMLA, and then I would have been sidelined for a longer time with no career and no way of supporting a baby. I hate that that has to even be an element in deciding to have kids--not whether you can support them, but whether it will be such a trade-off in parental leave. I'll probably always be a bit resentful, not of my own body or of the kid, but of the fact that nature is such a crapshoot--whether my body supported it or whether it was a genetic problem terminating itself. But that's what sexual reproduction is, it's what gives rise to evolution. It's inspired me to talk about it more, when I became ready. It's inspired me to not let the nuts and bolts of women's bodies be kept such an infernal secret socially.

I finished high school and even got into my dream school!!

Let's just start by saying that I am in a very different place in my life than 2014 me thought I would be! I have just reread my answers, and wow - what an example of 'you never know what'll happen'. In September 2014, I had just finished a placement at Unilever from which I had literally had a job promised to me. In last year's 10Q I used the phrase 'assuming I get it'. I thought that my big choice would be whether to accept the job or try and do marketing instead. 2014-me would have been downright shocked to hear I am doing neither. The 'significant event' that happened to me last year is two-fold - I didn't get the Unilever grad scheme. In fact I got pretty brutally rejected on the (genuinely bullsh*t) grounds that I "don't have enough leadership potential". But, after a lot of tears, disappointment and agonising, the end result is I was accepted into Oxford University to pursue a Masters in Victorian Literature! I could not be more over the moon with my 2015-16 plans. OXFORD! As I'm starting to see from my 10Q answers, I tend to view my life as a huge fatalistic web in which everything happens for a reason, and what goes around comes around (coincidentally, much like a Victorian novel). Hence, a little illogical part of me is thinking 'TWO FINGERS UP TO YOU CAMBRIDGE!!!' In 2012 when I first did 10Q, I was heartbroken to have been rejected from Cambridge. Now, I have had an awesome undergrad experience at Bristol, AND get the Oxbridge experience on top. So I'm trying to think that Unilever - which was undeniably a huge, painful slap in the face - happened for a reason, and will come good in the end. It is hard to see it this way though. I am currently struggling through other companies' applications, and having already been rejected from a couple, am not feeling overwhelmingly confident. It's difficult to motivate myself, to be confident in my abilities, and even to convince myself I want this kind of job. But I know I just have to do it, and trust that it will all work out in the end.

My husband left me 19 days before our 19th anniversary for his mistress in July. It exploded my world. The best thing to happen since then is he moved out. This has given me space and perspective. I have found a well of friendship I didn't know I had. I have found my strength, that I always knew I had but was not called on to use as of this past decade. My oldest child went off to college. This has been a good part, though most of my homeschooling friends think it must be hard for my son and I. I'm just so excited about her adventures coming up! She's doing great. Embracing being a student and having fun. She's made a lot of friends, which is awesome for my introvert. Just really happy for her. Life here is ever changing. I'm realizing a lot about my life/patterns that had not been brought into focus before the trauma of my husband's actions. Our teens don't know why he left. If they ask, I will tell them, but so far, they have not asked. I told a woman at church today, "All my friends remind me that no one ever died from divorce. I'll be fine once I get my footing." And I mean it. I'm starting to reimagine my life moving forward. I am a great partner, but I'm also a great individual! I can be by myself and not be lonely. It's part of my strength. One thing I learned recently form journaling is why I was attracted to my partner- he was emotionally distant; an individual himself not really capable of merging into interdependence. I choose him as a young person (23 years ago) because of my past, my need to not be smothered emotionally as my mentally ill mother smothered me at home. My boyfriend- then husband was a fresh breeze where I was sure he would take care of himself emotionally and not drown me. I didn't look far enough into the future to see his drive for independence and individuality, his natural rebellion would also not allow him to emotionally attach to me. Since this is his 3rd affair, I'm calling it quits. (3 strikes and you're out!) I am seeking to refocus on myself and find a healthier way forward. But I'm sure I'll rad this and realize how far I still had to go! I do, and I'm getting there but, this is where i am today- and it sure as hell beats 60 days ago!!

The most significant experience this year was probably starting my mixed media art journaling - - it has been awesome. It helped me to discover that I have talent and creativity in an area that I always believed I had none! That gives me hope for other areas of my life where I believe I am no good . I am learning to "play" with various materials and find that it is cathartic and inspiring to realize that I can create something beautiful, meaningful, something from my heart that is unique. It has encouraged me to reach a bit further and to explore possibilities that I might not have been comfortable with ... it is an ongoing process that is encouraging and truly healthy.

My spouse had several surgeries all related to the same goal. In the end it will improve her life and mine. But it has been taxing on our relationship. The stress it has placed on both of us has drained us of energy for anything else. We have not had fun. While grateful, I will be mostly relieved when we can move on.

My son was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia on 3/12/2015. It was the most devastating news & tore my whole world apart. My son is my heart beating outside my chest, my child, my teacher, my best friend, my future. I live in constant fear. My carefree life is over. I have grieved my past life that was so happy. I never understood depression until now. I am grateful he is in remission, that he has a medical team I feel confident in, & that he is the most amazing human being with the greatest attitude. In my heart, I believe he will beat this & I'm trying not to lose myself into a spiral hole of what if's. His doctor said his prognosis is good. He only wants his mother back so I need to give him that. It is a process.

I completed my conversion this year. On June 9th I went before the Sandra Caplan Bet Din and then was immersed in the Mikvah at AJU. All the way down from the High Desert to LA there were smatterings of rain, and every time the water hit me, or the car, I started crying I was so happy. When the Mikvah Lady talked to me about how the Rabbis had decided that you only need "a kiss" of living water I realized that I had been getting kisses all the way down. I cried all the way through the Mikvah, and when the Rabbis and my friend that were there sang "Mazel Tov" after the Mikvah Lady declared me kasher I had tears streaming down my cheeks. I was reborn as Miryam. (And even writing about it I have tears in my eyes again.)

I decided recently that if I was going to get to travel and see the world some of it would have to be done on my own. I have traveled by myself before but only in the United States. I've gone to Chicago totally by myself. And flown several times to New Mexico by myself although meeting up with a group. I've been out of the country before although not alone. The idea of going out of the country alone was scary at first. Now, though still a bit nerve wracking, it is a bit exciting. I'm planning a solo trip to Belize in May. My friend may come down for a weekend if he can make it. It was freeing to finally say to myself "I'm an adult and I can do this on my own. I don't have to live with the burden of other people's fears. I don't have to be restricted by them anymore. What's important is that I am willing to face the fears that I have and that I am cautious and comfortable with the amount of risk I am taking."

I finally married my best friend and perfect partner. We have been together for 4 years now, but I knew after just a few months that he was the person I wanted to go through all of life's adventures with. I am EXTREMELY grateful that we found each other at a time when we were open it. He is the most important person in my life.

My mother went into a nursing home and died four and a half months later. I was able to find copy dozens of documents in order to apply for Medicaid for her. I had many issues with my mom and I was still fairly peaceful at the end accepting who she was and just trying to help. I am dealing with some guilt feelings about not doing enough soon enough. And I am wondering how much my anger had to do with that.

My oldest daughter got married on August 8th. Nothing in life quite prepares you for this moment when your child exchanges vows with the person with whom she's chosen to spend her life. It was one of the most joyful days of my life. A celebration of love in itself is inspiring. It was made so much bigger by the collection of family and friends who attended. It is wonderful to look around and at a glance to understand and appreciate the amount of love and support that exists for your child...and for you.

My sister kicked cancer's ass! She was very inspiring the way she handled herself. She was amazing. We still have 5 years to go before I finish my sigh of relief. As strange as it sounds, I worry that I wouldn't handle something like that as well. For some reason, that's stressful for me. It's also made me think that I want to do more with my life. Something more impactful. I'm not sure what - I'd like to take some time and figure things out. More than anything though, I'm so happy she is where she is today.

I got married! I feel great about it. The whole process of planning and preparing for the wedding was so fun and exciting. It was fun to have such a big project to work on all the time. And the day itself was just amazing. Not overwhelming, or too big for the meaning of the day, it all felt just right. And then the honeymoon truly felt restorative. Both to us as individuals after the hustle and bustle of the wedding weekend, but even more to us as a couple. To be together, with only each other for 10 days was such a wonderful thing, and even after being together for 6 years, it really felt like we were back in the honeymoon phase. And it has continued at home. I'm so happy to be married to Luke. I wasn't sure it would feel any different after being together so long, and already buying a house together, but every time I think "We're married, He's my husband," I get such a nice calm feeling over me. I feel settled, in a wonderful way.

I got engaged! Finally! After four and a half years dating Andy! I am so grateful and relieved and so very happy to have a second chance to get married, ten years after my first wedding in 2005.

I have just started a new job (part-time) to supplement my income as I still haven't been able to support myself fully with nutrition alone. I have given up (90%) on having a baby and am putting more into being happy without it; with my boyfriend. Things are good. I still feel a bit sad about not having children, but looking forward to the future.

When i think about the past year quickly I immediately think to myself this was a slow year and not much happened. However, when I begin to dissect the year in smaller increments I realized a lot has actually happened! Last September I took the step to finally finish my masters degree. Reluctant at first because I knew I didn't want to finish teaching. However, in the end I was both relieved and excited that I finished it. I did put in alot of time I then found a new teaching job- teaching out of classroom. I liked it better but new it wasn't for me. I still didn't feel inspired after working in a different teaching job. I felt like there was more I could still do. I moved into a new apartment with a friend. It was an awful experience! I feel it was made much harder than it should have been. I was quick to blame my friend but realized I was part of the problem also. I should have been more upfront with what I wanted and stuck with my decision instead of trying to please others. The final significant thing that happened to me a dew days ago (9/11) was getting a new job at an ed-tech start up that I really like! I am so excited for this next chapter. I am finally feeling inspired. I am relieved to finally have a new teaching job. I am grateful for the company for hiring me and for my parents for believing in me. So i guess this past year has been eventful!

One of my oldest, dearest, and closest friends was killed in an automobile accident last Fall. There have been so many times I wanted to call her to ask for advice, to share something that she would have enjoyed. There is a hole in my life right now that is very slow to heal.

A year ago we adopted a new member of the family, an exchange student from Ecuador who eventually decided that she wanted to stay. She has to come and go to meet visa requirements but in between she is our new older daughter. We were all a bit worried about how it would go but that worry was totally misplaced. We are very relieved. In fact we are surprised how smoothly everything has gone. We opened our home and hearts and now have a new member of the family.

New York 🍀 the best experience that has happened to me this past year was New York. I lived there for 1.5 months, meet some interesting people, met up with friends from my past that had come to NY for one reason or the other. It was an awesome experience, a bit difficult at times because of living arangements but it was worth it! So grateful. I almost made it there with the UN Turkish mission job, this year I am gonna actually make it! Fingers crossed 🙏

I got a divorce and I moved across the country. I learned escaping my violent ex is going to be harder than I imagined. That my friends are amazing and supportive, for which I am eternally grateful. Finally, I have learned that I am stronger than I knew.

We moved. Excited as always wanted a 1 story place, excited for the great new neighborhood. But 6 months of living out of suitcases and lost things and found things. Very stressful experience. Grateful we are finally in, but now super stressed as my beloved wife has just had knee surgery so it is now 13 months of high stress in a row. Much frustration was part of the moving in process as we faced endless touch up and repairs, and each time the repair had to be repaired yet again. Great shortage of skilled craftsmen, and explosion of building in our Mt Pleasant SC neighborhood ... explains the multiple fix problems. If we can get past the stress, I think I may love just sitting on the big front porch with a brandy, but my tension level short term is still way to high for my blood pressure medication. I actually yearn for a little passage of time ... something a person of 70 RARELY does!

I completed the geriatric residency program. The effect it had on me was a mix of good and bad. It took a tremendous amount of work and time and subsequently took a toll on my personal life, my health and my relationship with my husband. Fortunately, he remained supportive and understanding throughout the experience. I am grateful for all that I learned and how it will effect my career as a physical therapist. It was a great learning experience. I am relieved that it is now complete (except for the certification exam) and look forward to applying my knowledge and experience to the next phase of my career. And to getting back to trying to have a better balance in my life….

My daughter left for college a month ago. I am relieved that the transition has so far gone well, yet I am not surprised. She reminds me of myself when I was her age-so driven, determined, magnetic in her enthusiasm. She also reminds me how much I have lost my drive to succeed. With this transition, I am now a stay at home mom with no children living full time at home. I know I should go back to (really start) work but I am at a loss as to what direction to head professionally. I've lost the ability to dream big and I'm not really inspired to go after any particular job which is so different from who I was at 18 years old.

We made a long cruise this year through some very poor countries, many of which have incredibly beautiful sites and objects. I was very moved to see how generous about sharing their while their heritage with others and the pride that some very poor people have as they strive to improve their standard of living. This was very inspiring to me though so much of what I felt is offset by the terrible things happening in the Arab world and throughout the Middle East. I have hope that some day the good and the tolerant will overcome the evil in the world.

I slowed way down and took an extended sabbatical. I didn't work for an entire 15 months, and it's possibly the best thing I have ever done. I am so grateful to have had this time to travel with my husband, to pause, reflect, and redirect my life.

I decided to move to Omaha. And I am still wavering inside that decision, allowing myself to actually explore deeply all the variations that the decision might reveal. I think I am inspired more by the process than the decision, because I am allowing myself to actually stand inside "I don't know," to remain curious and open to whether this is a good decision for me.

I spent the summer with my father, it had been a whole year since I had seen him last and to spend that much time with him, and most of it was just me and him was great, so we connected a lot. I am very grateful and I wish I could do it again

Last month I had a chance to see my ex-boyfriend. I haven't seen him since May 2014 when we discussed the possibility of us getting back together. After I found out he was cheating on me, my wish became a disappointment. Even after 3 months later, I made the attempt but he had his mind made up. Earlier this year (March) I received a text from him. We started to reconnect and in June we decided to get back together. After a few weeks, we both realized that we were on different paths. However, we remained in contact. In August, he came home (Maryland) for a few days and we slept together. We both felt the awkwardness and I made the decision that we should keep our friendship on a platonic level. Later that day, he texted me as if he was never going to talk to me again. He claimed he was moving to California for good and there's nothing here for him. He apologized and I haven't heard from him since. Am I grateful? Yes. I'm grateful that God answered my prayers and allowed me to have time with him. Am I relieved, yes and no. Yes because for the first time I made a mature decision and was ok with it. No I'm not relieved because in my decision-making I had to say goodbye to someone I truly love. Resentful? Yes and no. I resent not seeing the game he was playing. I also resent the time I dedicated to him thinking that this time, we would make it. I also resent sending him pictures of me. But on the other hand, I do not resent him, because I know that God is going to send someone to me that will be ready for the type of relationship I want and deserve. And because of this I feel inspired.

I signed up for the Tikkun Middot Project at my temple. All participants were asked to contribute to our Temple's Elul Blog. This is something that I normally would say "someone else will do it or nothing I have to say is worthy." Instead I wrote something on balance which I submitted. My studies inspired me to contribute. I am grateful that I stepped out of my comfort zone.

1.I reached my 80th birthday. I am basically healthy. I am still working. I look great. I am in a good place. I had a fabulous party with 34 people. I was on such a high. I hope to keep enjoying life and feeling happy, meeting new people. going to museums, having interesting conversations. 2. My collage was chosen to be on the flyer of an exhibit for my collage class in the gallery of the senior center where I take the collage class. The opening reception was so exciting. I was so happy that day. I am so grateful.

Big trees are being cut all around me, it is frightening and excruciatingly sad.

I overheard members of my family talking about how much weight I had gained...they said they wouldn't have recognized me. I confronted them and they said they were talking about my younger sister...but I know what I heard. My mother proceeded to suggest that if I was worried about my weight, I should talk to my other sister about her secret to weight loss (gastric banding and drugs). I was humiliated and numb. It made me angry at myself for staying with my parents while I was visiting my hometown. I should have known better. My family enjoys reminding me of all my shortcomings and failings. The main effect of this visit/experience is that I finally woke up to the fact that I should stop looking for approval and acceptance from my family. I'm never going to find it there. I've wasted far too much time. I am grateful to them for openly showing me what I hadn't recognized before....and I am resentful that the people who should have loved me best, do not.

I met, started dating, and fell in love with a wonderful woman who is totally crazy about me. I am very grateful to know her, I am profoundly relieved because I'd spent many years alone, and she brings me much joy and hope for a future together. We also really admire each other and that's probably inspiring, the drive to be a better person because (a) someone already thinks I'm amazing and (b) she's such a goodhearted and hard-working person herself. We're both overweight, but still find each other beautiful and sexy.

My breast augmentation surgery didn't go as planned. I had to go back and have the surgery re-done on one side. It has been 4 months and I am doing well now. It has hindered my strength-training. My workouts are important to me because I do not want to get old and fragile. I want to be strong when I am old. I am frustrated at the long time healing and vow to stay strong. I am continuing to stay strong not just for me, but for my husband and family and grandchildren so I can live a full rich life and enjoy them to the very end and not burden anyone.

While there have been significant experiences that have happened this year, losing Nonna was the number one. The past couple of years caring for her have been some of the most frustrating and beautiful ones. I am so thankful that I got the time with her but also sad that she had to suffer so much to get there. I can only imagine how hard it is to be losing parts of your mind and wanting so hard to understand what's going on but each day finding it more and more difficult. I can only hope that she knows how much she gave to us over the years that she was a part of my life and that she has helped to shape who I am and who I am becoming.

This year, I moved across the country to start a new job and to build a new life, at the age of 61. It is both energizing and terrifying. I am grateful to be back in California, which has always since my first arrival here in my twenties felt like home. I am struggling to make ends meet, and accommodating to very different circumstances, but I am hopeful that I can carve out a little niche for myself here and live out my life in relative peace.

Rachel got married in May. It was a beautiful wedding and she was a beautiful bride. The highlight of the weekend for me was the rehearsal dinner where so many of Rachel's friends talked about her with love and candor. There toasts were not generic. It was clear they understood Rachel for both her strengths and her challenges, and the loved her for who she is. As a parent, hearing such truthful loving comments about your child is as good as it gets. Rachel's wedding has had a big impact on me. It represents my transition from being a parent to a soon to be grandparent, and for my moving towards being one of the elders of the family. I am no longer the young dynamic go getter, and not even the middle age man climbing the ladder of success. Although I still have much I want to personally accomplish and do in my life, I am moving towards the role of being a compassionate listener, an encouraging voice, and a person who helps people see things from a broader perspective. I look forward to moving into this phase of life.

I met some relatives in Israel I really liked and was impressed with how lovely and accomplished they were.

Uncle George died about a month ago. Tragic, sudden, intense, deeply sad. When it first happened, I could think of little else and -- uncharacteristically -- yearned to be together with my family. The time we all spent together was very special, and I felt closer to Judee, Ruby, and Emmy than I have in many years. Now that I have been back home for weeks it is all too easy to forget that he is gone. And then some little thing will remind me of him and I remember that he'll never be with us again. And I feel guilty that I GET to forget, when I imagine for Judee there are everpresent reminders of him. I want to learn from this, to have it teach me that the time we have with our loved ones is brief and we need to make it count. But it's so hard to remember that with the daily stresses of life. The weird thing about a time of intense grief is how simple everything becomes, and how clearly things snap into proper perspective. How does one hold onto that wisdom?

Bypass surgery.

Two things which were significant; My daughter became engaged and we will be celebrating her wedding next month. Total joy is how I can describe my feelings about this momentous life event. I hired an associate doctor who has the eventual goal of buying my practice in October 2016 and I can finally "retire". There is am overwhelming sense of relief that I finally have a plan and have set the wheels in motion but also a great feeling of fear, hoping it will come to fruition, what will I do afterward, do I have enough money saved to enjoy my retirement, and many other thoughts of uncertainty.

The most significant thing that happened in the past year is my uncle dying. I haven't really processed this yet, since I still think I will hear from him. I am sad that he's gone, but he had diabetes and was having trouble with his kidneys. I think for him it was a release, but we all still mis him.

Working in the church office has shown me a new way of looking at group efforts for the betterment f others. I see people who really care about their community. I see people giving of their time and energies when if they wanted to they could say no. I understand a little more of their focus. I am grateful, inspired, never resentful, wishing I could be a part of it. I look forward to being there as an employee in the office. Is it acceptable for a Jewish woman to work in a church? Answer: I don't know. However it was placed before me for a reason and I am walking through it with a new love in my heart.

I transitioned my father into assisted living this year. It was traumatic at first. In late October, I felt a strong urge to change our living situation. It no longer felt like I could weather his physical changes and it had become clear that he would need more help going forward. The guilt was and still is haunting but it was the right thing to do.

I took Impact Bay Area's basics class - a full force self defense class with instructors in padded suits. It was incredibly tough, physically and emotionally. The physical faded and I'm glad I did it on that front - I wasn't sure I could with my level of disability and feel a lot more confident in my ability to defend myself if I need to. The emotional took months to settle and some of it is still processing - it brought up many of the hardest experiences of my life and caused me to look at and reprocess most of them. As hard as it was? I'm grateful and thrilled that I did it, that I survived it, that I came out stronger and more whole. I'm thinking about doing it again next spring as preparation for doing more of their classes, because the confidence in my own body is so amazing and useful.

Building stronger relationships with friends, my sister, mother, and father than ever before. I'm grateful! 1a.Everything I've wanted in a roomate, easy-goingness, less anxious about the small stuff, fun and loving, and she actually loves spending time with me and doing things for me. Spending time with me on the weekends as well as during the week 1b. Ellen- going to her house and not really trying to get along with her. We like a lot of the same things, but she also challenges me. Wants my input on her problems as well as mine. Likes spending time with me on the weekends. Along with Nikki and Ella. They always have something fun planned, and I'm always welcome to come. 2. Emily has been excited to actually talk to me, and finds my company reenergizing and grounding. We have helped each other get through the divorce and it has made our relationship much stronger. 3.Mom- during my psychosis and during my healing process she spent everyday with me. I've never been so grateful to one person in my life before. 4. Dad- actually wants to hear what i have to say. he is not the high and mighty guy anymore.

Did a great travel visiting some of the best cities in Europe. It´s been one of the best experiences in my life.

I became engaged. It made me realize that love was always possible, no matter what has happened before.

Significant experience, eh? Leaving my job of 13 years for a new adventure is pretty darn significant. It threw me for a big loop. Big. However, despite the anxiety and sadness that came with leaving my beloved classroom, and the anxiety and uncertainty that came with heading to a new school, I don't regret anything. I feel extremely grateful for the opportunity, relieved that I'm actually in a building where people value me as me, and am ever inspired, daily, by all those in which I interact - from the littlest students to the teachers.

My daughter broke up with her boyfriend and began life as a single woman. I am proud of her growing independence, grateful that she feels free to confide in me, and inspired to cultivate more courage of my own.

A significant event that I am grateful for if my brothers wedding in February. It was a magic experience that I could never forget!

Summer with my boys. Inspiring, loving, exciting. Wouldn't trade it for anything. Very grateful!

As a recent retiree, I have had the privilege of reconnecting with former colleagues. I left my profession pretty certain that I did not have much of an impact; however, this has been "challenged" a bit by the fact that re-connections have been made with the intent of collaboration. This has caused a healing to occur and I am so very grateful for the experience and opportunity.

I had Lasik eye correction surgery at the end of February. It was a decision I had been thinking on for a while. Before the surgery, I had very poor near sighted distance vision. I had to have glasses on all of the time, except when sleeping or reading a book in bed. I went through stages of anxiety about the procedure. I had consultations with two different doctor's offices. I was most anxious about after the procedure, and not messing up my eyes while they were healing. I had the surgery on a Friday, and it went well. They gave me a Valium, which I'm sure helped with the anxiety, but I was still anxious. The worst part of the actual procedure was the part where they clamped my eye lids open so I would not blink. The rest was a cake walk compared to the clamps. After, they had me sit up and I was so overwhelmed with being able to see and the stress of it all, I began to cry. I asked if it was ok and they said Of course. They tested my eyes, had me recover in another room and then covered my eyes with shields. I went home that day and slept. I napped a lot to help with the healing. My worse fears were that I would rub my eye accidentally and/or that I would get a cat hair or something in it and mess things up. I was more careful with my eyes and wore the shields over my eyes while sleeping for a month, rather than just the week they suggested. All of this is to explain it was overall, a good experience. I catch myself seeing things that I would not have seen before, with glasses. I went sailing this summer and it was brilliant because I didn't have to worry about my glasses getting wet or lost. I believe that is the best money I have ever spent. I am so grateful to have done it.

Admitted into hospital twice between June and July 2015 for same issue! Total stay 5 weeks! Horrendous experience! Has changed my life for the worse and don't think I ever will recover mentally and physically!

I found myself questioning what I wanted out of relationships and my life this year after my once fiance let me down during a significant health issue. It seemed that because I had let him down in other ways, he made the decision to not support me through my struggle. It made me question love and how we all deal with the ones we love. I discovered to me, Love is when you can be angry or disagree with another but still be there when your help is needed. This has led me to struggle with the knowledge that he can not do this and I can not accept that. Started the year thinking I would be starting a new life - still starting a new life just not the one I planned.

In January, a young friend suddenly died with no explaination. I can not claim that she was yet a close personal friend but our friendship was yet in it's early development but we enjoyed each other and had like minded humor. The nature of her death remains a mystery. She was found at home, deceased. Autopsy provided no cause. It is as if her presence was merely evaporated. As much as I regret to admit it, I remain resentful and angry. Not at her because I realize she had no power over the situation but at the circumstance itself. And part of that resentment is in the futility of purpose and reason that I had hoped govern our lives. I find myself now in this hopeless space, directionless, purposeless, undriven.

This past year has challenged me to live more outside of my shell. I tagged this year - 2015 - as the year to come out, to let it be known to others what I'm all about, what my legacy is, and to share my story. I'm much more settled on it, but I've yet to put anything on paper or create a website for my business. It's been a relief on that its empowered me with a direction. I'm inspired by what will result. I'm already seeing some results - not just with my family but with how others respond to me.

My sweet 92 year old father has had five broken vertebrae this past year! I am greatful he was able to have five successful spinal procedures and continues to be with us! Greatful. Happy. Received

I was late getting back to work in the fall, but I took a job in NB. It was far. The commute was tough. But I got a lot out of it. I met great people. Yes, I am grateful that I had that experience. It was never boring. I wish I was still there, in some ways. I miss my kids a lot. I worry about them, and hope they are doing well. I didn't really say goodbye properly, but that's OK. I wish everyone there well. It was a good experience for me. The other thing that happened, not so much about me, is Harris graduated high school. I was so, so happy! In looking at how much he had accomplished, I couldn't help but feel proud.

I met up with Mike, a friend of mine from uni this year. We fell out and for years I have blamed myself and wondered if I had acted differently, would I still be friends with him and all the people I lost touch with as a result of our disagreement. I was nervous about it for ages and pinned such high hopes on the evening. I hoped that there would be some regret from both sides and that we might move forward and that a whole new world of friendship would open up again. It was a disaster. Within an hour I realised that he has always made me fun of me. It was jokey at first and a bit like old times, but then I realised (with the benefit of 10yrs of hindsight) that actually the jokes he made and still were making hurt me and made me feel worthless. I started drinking heavily and was searching for some form of apology for his part in our argument and it was never going to come. I'm disappointed in myself, because I didn't handle the event as I would like. Instead of keeping what dignity I had left I got absolutely smashed and emotional. I cried, it was awkward and I missed the last train meaning I had to get a very expensive taxi. I was sick in the cab it was so bad. Will was worried sick as he should have been. I just couldn't keep it together. 10 years of wondering if some halcyon rekindled friendship was dashed - and I had to come to terms with the fact that actually he had never in fact been a great friend for making me feel that way. I felt bruised, almost like I was grieving for something. It's been tough to come to terms with. That fall out has affected all my friendships after uni - I'd convinced myself I was a crap friend and as a result have always lacked confidence, felt like I'm a selfish person, discounted myself. And all rather unnecessarily. I'm coming through the other side now and am grateful instead for all the wonderful friends I do have that value me, not put me down for their one-liners.

My two retreats this summer. Both reminded me that I can step away from the familiar and grow, feel comfortable and step outside of my comfort zone

I went back to work. The last job I had before this one was while I was in college. Work after becoming a mom is different, but I needed it I needed it to feel centered and together and honestly the 30 hours or so a week that I can put my mind and energy into something else makes me feel more present and better equipped to be a good mom. I wish I could say I am one of those people who gets fulfillment out of being a SAHM only, but I'm not. Applying for this job was scary and uncomfortable, and sometimes it still feels that way but I am so proud of myself for putting myself out there and exploring something new. I geel brave and capable.

I belong to a small renewal synagogue that is facing the retirement of it's part time rabbi. For three years she lead Human Rights Shabbat sponsored by T'ruah formerly Rabbis for Human Rights, This year with her retirement we had decide how to proceed. We had an event on Human Rights Shabbat so we had to decide whiter to hold the event on another date and who should lead. I ended up developing and leading a service incorporating the T'ruah liturgy with original poems I wrote. I usually do not compliment myself but am very proud of well the service went. We do not yet have a new rabbi and once again can hold it on the dates T'ruah suggests but I will lead the service in November and will incorporate Thanksgiving and preparing for Chanukah asking members to buy gilt free gelt from fair Trade Judaica

I'm still sorting out how I feel about sending my oldest child off to college. He seemed so restless this past year and was hardly ever home. Going away to college seemed like a natural progression. I know that he was ready and believe that he will do well on his own. Yet I really miss sitting next to him at the dinner table. Our relationship is evolving. It's a difficult adjustment - being more and more removed from being in the know about what's going on I his life. In a way it's a relief to have him in charge of him. I don't worry near as much as I expected to. He has a pretty good head on his shoulders, is getting involved in lots of activities and making new friends. It's very comforting to see him adjusting so well.

I rehomed my dog. I'm resentful. I made a lot of choices that revolved around eventually bringing him home with me. I regret making those choices. I know deep down I was a bad owner, I was lazy - partly my depression but mostly just lazy and he is probably much happier with his new family but it truly broke my heart and I really did want him to be with me. I think about him every day. I'm angry at myself for allowing Chris so much leeway because I was stupid enough to think it would all work out. It hasn't and now I'm trapped.

Not getting into PA school - This was significantly taxing on me. I felt that I was so close to reaching my goals but I didn't make it and rejection is always something that sticks with me. I felt like I was thrown back a million miles. I was devastated. Breaking it off with Joe - This is something that I should have done last year. Our relationship was a cycle of arguments and hurt emotions. I really don't know why it lasted as long as it did. I wanted to make it work because I could see us building a life together but it wasn't based on emotional support or mutual attraction. I guess I was attracted to the fact that he was successful but we just didn't click. I didn't feel a bond or even felt like I was desired by him. That really caused me to experience hurt feelings. Meeting Ismael - So this has truly been such an amazing experience! I feel a very natural connection to Pito. I can see myself spending more time with him. I love the way he looks at me. I adore how he runs his hands around my body when we are making out. Also, I never enjoyed making out this much! It's amazing. I feel like I'm 12 years old again.

In April of 2015 I acquired permanent lymphadema. While the lymphadema is a direct result of my successful breast cancer treatment 8 years ago, I naively thought enough time had past and I was out of the woods. Further, it appears that lymphadema was triggered by a miscarriage after trying for one year to conceive a second child. After months of treatment my left (dominant) arm is now 20% larger than my right. The condition is sometimes painful and requires constant maintenance - compression, bandaging, physical therapy - that is time consuming and expensive. The swelling limits my activity and what I can wear. I'm sad, frustrated and resentful. I feel diminished, weakened, vulnerable. Nobody knows what this condition is, and I feel alone, isolated, freakish. I'm grieving that I have been unable to conceive a second child. And the lymphadema has raised again the specter of cancer and the fearful possibility of recurrence and an early death.

The Refugee crisis in Europe, syrians, eritreans, ethiopians and other Africans stuck in a horrible, tragic political situation in their respective countries, that forces them to flee...for survival...and we call them economic migrants! its is unfair how easily we belittle other peoples life situations, only because we're so far removed and mainly think of how it will affect us, our economy, our backyard. It has influenced me because if Europe hadn't opened their borders, I wouldn't have been here now today, second generation European. I'm grateful and I'm lucky and wish all the refugees the same opportunity to start over and create new lives for themselves, rebuild what was lost.

After years of pushing, I am finally being paid to write. This has caused me to abandon comic books almost completely, but has put me closer to the dream of writing professionally than I ever have.

My husband died. It has devastated me. Losing him was such a blow and it wasn't supposed to end like that. It has stripped me down to the raw core of my very being. It has changed how I look at the world. Many things no longer matter. The ground shifted beneath my feet and I am now trying to figure out how to build a new life. It will be a long slow process. Am I grateful that he died. Not really. I am grateful that he is no longer suffering and there is no more fight. But I would continue to do it. I'm a bit relieved of having to fight, but I would rather that he just got better, not died. I am a bit resentful that he is gone. While I understand and accept that he had completed his task on this earth and he left himself no other outs, I still wish it were different. I am proud, for lack of a better word, that I completed my job with him, I honored our contract, and that I stayed at his side and fought hard with him. I hope that I was a comfort and source of strength for him. Am I inspired? Not from his death, but from how he lived his life. I am inspired to recover from this and move on.

An unexpected death work very lean which has left me with no sense of direction, totally reliant on my partner for grounding an stability, which isn't like me. I'm normally in control of where I'm heading so I feel closer to my partner but resent myself for not being able to cope

This past year, my friend Max passed away. He was in a car accident and went into a coma. He died five days later. Five days before his 20th birthday. I was not best friends with Max but he definitely touched me. He was one of those people who just makes a positive impact on everyone that he walks by. Usually when someone dies, the living just talk about the good that they did. Even if the person who died was a terrible person, nobody mentions that after they die. For Max, there truly wasn't anything bad to say. I'm not saying he was perfect by any means, but the good things he did completely outweigh the mistakes. I've never dealt with death before.Well...I've never had a person in my life die and so this was hard. I wasn't sure how I was supposed to react and feel. I felt like I should have been angry because Max was nowhere near being done with the world. He was the one that we all knew was going to make it to Broadway an beyond and he never got that chance. But I wasn't angry. I was grateful. I was grateful that I got to know this beautiful light for even a meager two years. After his death, a lot has changed in me. I am a very conscious driver and I try to be the safest I can. I appreciate my life more. I appreciate my friends more. I take pictures. I perform for Max and for those who can't. Most of all I strive to be the type of person Max was. The type of person who has a meaningful conversation with you every time no matter how much older or younger you were. Someone who works hard and is willing to try anything but doesn't take himself too seriously. Someone who is a genuinely good person. I do it for Max now.

My daughter was finally released from prison, after serving 51 months. I am glad she immediately found a job, she seems to be okay, but I do worry about her choices of men again. Other than this, it's been wonderful!

I am sitting here feeding my significant experience. In the past year I experienced pregnancy and birth of my twin girls, after years of trying. I am grateful, oh yes. Tired, scared, overwhelmed, and oh so very grateful.

I work on a self-managed team that is highly interdependent. Every member is very skilled, hard-working, and collaborative. Recently I've been given some work opportunities that my colleagues have not been given. This created a lot of resentment and conflict. We had several team meetings where we aired the problem. I found that period of time at work very stressful and painful. I played a role in the problem but also felt misunderstood. I'm relieved that period is over, but also cautious going forward. It was important learning for me, but I find it hard to feel grateful for the learning. I guess I still feel a bit resentful. I don't want to feel that way. I truly believe my colleagus were acting with integrity in the conversations.

This year my oldest son graduated from college, and got a job working in New Tork. I am grateful as well as relieved. He had such a hard time in school as a child. He did have diagonised learning issues, which made school harder for him than many others. However, he did learn ways to compensate for his weaknesses and use his strengths to his benefit. I also feel relieved, because I feel that the this chapter is over. He proved to himself as well as all of us ( i never had any doubt) that he will be a success in this world. He has amazing interpersonal skills that I know will help him in the working world. If he does choose to go back to school at some time, it will be with more confidence and in a area that he wants to pursue.

I learned that I had prostate cancer and initially got the impression that it was more serious and immediate. You always hear about people in similar and more serious circumstances who then suddenly clarify what matters most to them. True. But I've since learned this is likely to be much more gradual so the urgency is less but things like time with friends is prioritized a bit more. I'm not afraid or resentful. I feel I've had more great fortune (not from a financial standpoint, although that has been good too, but in experiences) than I had ever expected and that my life has been blessed even if it ended now. That said, I still want to experience more variety in my life and I'd like to contribute more in a meaningful way.

an abusive manager was fired. An awful neighbor is gone, for which I am most grateful. I'm realizing that I will be weaker and less able as I further age. I appreciate my excellent physical therapists and my great medical practitioners. The new friends I'm making, and the old friends I'm enjoying.

The most significant experience of the last year was my unexpected pregnancy. I had just left my husband and was living with my parents. I had only been gone maybe two months at that point. My parents had moved to the area only months before, the happy coinciding of my move-out from my marriage. They needed me almost 24-7 as dad was in a wheelchair and virtually unable to move much other than using his strong arm for eating and some leverage as he shifted to the bed. He is twice my mom's size and they both felt unsafe alone for more than a few hours a day. For a week I felt quite euphoric and energetic and was not sure why. The following week I got that funny pregnancy taste in my mouth and by then I was a week late for my period and I knew. I took a pregnancy test the next day but my heart understood what my body already was telling me. I told my parents first as mom heard my yakking in the morning and saw me scrutinizing my plate, unable to eat. I had a week of knowing and being excited. I stood in the shower and touched my belly and cried with joy and spoke to my child. "I choose you," I said. I told my daughter next. She's six. She remembers the summer I was pregnant with her little brother and got toxoplasmosis and woke bleeding and cramping one night and birthed that tiny human in my bathroom and he was dead and gone and lost to me forever. I told my husband and he became violently angry. I told him I was doing this alone. I would work hard and ask my parents to help and do daycare and be this person. He didn't believe the baby was his. When the bad sickness hit me a few days later at work I understood this might be too much for me to do alone. If I couldn't work and my husband wasn't willing to give me any support money and my parents needed my physical help lifting my dad daily then how was I to do this? To complicate matters, there was, as predicted, Someone Else in my life at that point. Two in fact. Each one played a different role in my life, but both mattered to me and I could foresee long futures with each (or both, I hoped) in different manners. I'm waffling about it, I know. A girl's gotta keep some things to herself, right? So I told them both. One of them was supportive from the start. He listened, he helped me plan, he expressed his concerns for me. He was worried. He wasn't sure this was right for me. His first reaction was support and care. Later there was more, but in the first few hours of knowing, he was kind. And damn practical about it. We had only known each other for less than six months at this point. The other I had fought with the week before the euphoria hit. We had been talking for nearly a year at this point and this had been our first actual fight. There was shouting There were tears. From us both. We made up very quickly, as is our way. As he put it once, later, when I closed him out of my life for a few days, "Without you, it's just breathing. I go through the day but it's not living. Just breathing." The same goes for me. We need each other on a fundamental level that I cannot explain. He, unlike the other, expressed fear and concern right away, but not for me alone, fear for himself and his role and our future. There was anger and frustration. The day after I told him, I wrote this at night before falling asleep, "Do you think I am doing the right thing?" His answer, "No, this is the wrong time. This is the wrong time for you to have a baby." I had never considered an alternative. He had once told me he would never condone such an action and I agreed. I said, "If I do this, will you be with us when you can?" Yes, was his answer. And if I didn't he would go with me and hold my hand. I think I thanked him for his honestly, turned the phone off, and didn't speak to him for a week. The following day I worked. I could not eat. I was dizzy. I went home and slept and woke and couldn't eat again. I threw up every hour. Not a surprise. I knew this was part of the deal. I touched my stomach and felt miserable, heart and soul and body. I relied on my previous two pregnancies to teach me how to cope with this one. I asked my mother's help with food. With no car and my driving-throwing up misery, she shrugged and left me to it. I realized she expected me to take this in stride and handle it on my own. No help there. No food to prevent me from throwing up (ironic how that works). My husband came to pick up our daughter. I couldn't take care of her alone while in such a state. He told me I could have the new baby and be on my own and he would take our daughter and have full custody of her. I would be too busy with pregnancy and the new baby to see her and he would be glad to take her off my hands. That felt bad and wrong and I felt helpless. In those moments after she left with him, I knew I did have a choice. The people around me could not or would not help me and I no longer had the ability to help myself. So I made the Choice. How did it affect me? I told my husband my decision. He took me home and fed me and helped me and drove me to the clinic. At the time I felt grateful, but I see now that this was best for him and what he wanted. He cared for me because I made the choice he wanted me to make. I told my Someone Else and he said it broke his heart. I told the other Someone Else and he said not to go back to my husband, but he respected me no matter what I chose. I lashed out afterwards at both my Someones. I didn't speak much to either of them for several weeks. I spent that time with my baby and then without my baby and I didn't really see another option and I didn't say much. I lay in bed and bled and cried and thought about how I was doing what was right for the child I already had. And that was all I thought. After a time, I saw one of my Someone Elses. We run in the same social circles. We'd fought over text on the worst day of bleeding and we fought equally, yelling at each other, arguing, trying to each justify our positions. When he saw me come into the room he looked up at me and he was the most raw, vulnerable human I have ever seen. We spent the evening sitting side by side. As long as I live I will never forget The Look. He is my friend still and he is generous and kind and we look out for each other in all things. The other Someone, the one whose heart was broken by my silence, he and I couldn't manage more than a week apart. We found each other again as we always do. He held me and we cried for my choice and the baby. I reminded him the choice had been mine. I tried to make it work with my husband. We didn't fight. He told me I made an effort to be good to him. I eventually got a new job that took me away from home some evenings. He told me he needed a wife who made him a priority and he was ready for the divorce now. I left again. I am happy. I found a lawyer who made sure I will never lose custody of my daughter. Life is good.

I do not have just one significant experience but so many moments, days, weeks that were very trying and other days that were fabulous. Everyday brought new challenges(and luckily, some very positive too) and then there were too many of the day after day difficulties, frustrations and I was so glad that June rolled around and summer was here. It was a peaceful summer and time to regenerate both mind and body.

I got a fulltime position. I was relieved and still not as happy as I expected to be.

The year has been filled with one challenge after another as I learn to live with the new lifestyle born of my husbands health crisis. Most of the challenges bring up in me the resistance of a cat receiving a bath. Yet as my sane mind begins to return, the greater lesson reveals itself and I am in awe to have become aware of something new about me. Any restriction of freedom brings up old resentments but they seem vaporize as the process evolves. That when I realize how grateful I am for the insights.

Michael is engaged! I am so happy I cannot put it into words. A prayer has been answered. He is so happy and there is nothing that makes me happier than to see him like this. He came to me and told me about asking Chadia to marry him. He showed me a picture of the ring he purchased for her. Then we discussed the right time and place for him to propose. He decided to ask for her father's blessing first, while at Buckeye Lake with her family. Then the next day he proposed. She said yes! They are a cute couple and I pray they will remain happy in all their days ahead.

My mother being seriously ill. I am relieved now that she is recovering and grateful for the fact that she is not dead. I was terrified, afraid of living in a world without her

Our dear friend Patrick passed away. He was our traveling friend. He took me to my grandfather's home town in Ukraine. My great grandmother's home town in Poland and many other places around the world. I'm grateful for the time we had together and words cannot express my debt to him. It's one thing to hear about villages and another thing to stand there on the ground and have people stare holes through you.

Finally took a cruise in the Caribbean. Keith has wanted to go forever and so now we have. It was too hot. It was too humid. I'm glad to have been but don't anticipate going back. It was miserably uncomfortable. I wish I could go when it was cooler but we went in January to the equator - I don't expect much change.

I was told by my landlady (personal friend) that she and her husband were getting a divorce and that he wanted the house back. I wasn't ready to move and actually was hoping to buy the house at the end of my lease. She told that I could stay until the end of my lease in July. I thought I should look into buying a house as I didn't really want to pay more anyway for rent. I met a wonderful real estate agent and she and I became friends and she found me the perfect house. So despite the negative event, I helped my friend by moving out early, I gained a very nice friend and I am in the house that is perfect for me. Although stressful at the time, I felt very grateful for all of the good things that came of it.

I turned 50 this year. Initially I was not planning to do anything special to observe it, but when Leah & Joe offered to throw a party for me that catalyzed an effort to organize a whole month of extraordinary experiences with friends and family! My whole family met at Aaron & Staces for parties for both me and Aaron, Ben & I went to the home run derby and all star game together in Cincinnati, we saw a Broadway play(Kinky Boots) & I drove into NYC (like a native) to see it, I rode the bus for the 1st time since I've lived in Cincinnati. I went to see James Taylor with Sarah Strouse, and had a wonderful dinner at the Littlefield with Kay Sloan. I also introduced Frank to many friends who hadn't met him, and he took me out for a perfect Lobster dinner! It was significant, in that it made me realize how important it is to live life to the fullest and seize time and opportunities to be with friends!

I want to mention my trip to Israel. Every single day was an inspiration. I am really greatful for having had the chance to experience it. Some of it was bitter, such as my visit to Hebron and the awful situation there. Some of it was simply wonderful, such as praying at the Kotel, strolling in Tel Aviv, meeting wonderful people, arguing about politics at a Shabbat dinner in th German Colony and experiencing Shavuot in the Old City in Jerusalem. Plus everything else that would take up too much space to mention. A life changing trip.

Our two grandsons, Jonah and Louis, were born this May three days apart. We are profoundly grateful, joyful and inspired to watch them grow.

Watching Black Lives Matter activists challenge Bernie Sanders at Netroots Nation in Phoenix, AZ. It angered and inspired me deeply. It was the day I started to really understand how black folks must feel living in a society that dismisses them and their concerns. As a woman, my thoughts are routinely dismissed, and it's disheartening, depressing, and infuriating. Watching Bernie Sanders dismiss an entire movement led by women helped me to realize what I have in common with BLM protesters. I've been involved in trying to make the world a less racist place since that day.

Being on the hiring committee and helping decide who the new site superviso would be was a tremendous uplift. Since I believe in the capabilities of this person, I am willing to follow the leadership as well as the difficulties of the tasks at hand this year.

My daughter got married this year. It was great, she was so grown up and the day was pretty amazing. I had worried about whether I would be able to enjoy it due to my exishnwife being there and I was able to enjoy it and stay in the moment. It did make me sorta sad as it showed what I lost and that I am not in a relationship. That made me sad and Lonely and made me worry about what I have lost.

Late September-October 2014, almost one year ago exactly, my wife and I went to Europe with three other couples and two single friends. It was Becky and I, the Newman's, the Harriman's, the Roberts's, Jackie and Clint. We visited Dublin, Ireland and London, England. This crazy bunch explored outside of both cities in towns and locations such as Howth, Glendalough, the Wicklows, Trim Castle and several other place while in Ireland. While in England, we experienced most of the city, Becky and I took a train to Canterbury and Dover, got to see France from the White Cliffs which is a rarity given that it's usually too foggy and last but definitely not least, we had a crazy four hour and ridiculously expensive cab ride all the way from London to Manchester when our train was cancelled just to watch Manchester United play Chelsea at the legendary Old Trafford. Well worth the adventure even for one astonishing tying goal off of Robin Van Persie's noggin. We also stayed in Chelsea while in London, a beautiful little nook nestled in a major metropolitan city. The entire group experienced extraordinary things, incredible foods, interesting people, ancient history, all the must-see sights and more than our fair share of pints in pubs older than anything in the U.S. Seeing the world makes me truly appreciate how amazing life is. I am extremely grateful that both, Becky and I's, careers have afforded us a lifestyle that allows us to travel. I think the world would be a better place if everyone could do it. Meeting the people and immersing yourself in a different culture makes you a better adjusted and more intelligent human, one that couldn't possibly do harm to another citizen of the world. Travel makes me better. Travel inspires me to be more creative. Travel humbles me and teaches me how small I really am. Travel fulfills the periods of time between the day-to-day in life that would be wasted if it weren't for hard work. Travel makes my blood flow and it's the reason to keep grinding. It's the reason to live.

I finished grad school! I have a masters degree!!! I am pretty damn proud of myself, even if I am still unemployed.

Nothing especially significant has happened to me personally. However, there are some small things that have lifted me and thrown me down. Having my son surprise me at one of my performances had me over the moon. Having my best friend diagnosed with breast cancer filled me with fear and anger.

I had a 6" piece of my large intestine removed. It was pre-cancerous but removed in the event it became cancerous later in life. At 66, I'm not concerned about dying, and actually wasn't sure if the surgery was worth it. Seriously? It could 'extend my life'? To what 75? At 75, what will be my quality of life anyway? I wasn't worried about dying on the operating table as that'd probably be a pretty easy way to die. The worse part of the surgery was feeling like I'd swallowed a brick the day after. But that passed. The other concerning part was a total lack of energy for several weeks afterwords. In all, I'm neither grateful, relieved, inspired or resentful. Just another day in the life.

I had my ovaries and uterus removed, and went into menopause at a young age. I'm still struggling to get my hormone replacement balanced, but overall, I feel drastically better physically and mentally than I did for years and years before the surgery. I am SO relieved, and very resentful that it took me years and many doctors to get someone to do this surgery. I'm also resentful I had to figure out on my own that I needed it. It opened a door for me though--to feeling well, to possible adoptive motherhood, to a career, to things I haven't even thought of yet.

I ended a 3.5 year relationship. Sam (not his real name) and I had issues for 5 or 6 months prior to ending our relationship. We thought we were going to get married, but slowly realized we were not right for each other. I miss him every day, and this time of year is especially difficult. The experience made me stronger, happier and more self-assured. Sometimes I resent spending 3.5 years with him. But, most days I am grateful for having had him in my life.

This past year has been full of little events. Brian has been in school now for a full year. We celebrated our one year anniversary. Winry is almost 3. We're surviving. For as quiet as this year was, we got hit with something very unexpected, but it was not an event in the traditional definition of an event. Brian's ex-wife did not file his city taxes over several years and now we are being told that we have to come up with $4,000.00 by December 15th or my husband gets to spend a year in jail and we will still have the taxes plus other fines to try to pay off. This is my life. It is not an event. It is a black cloud that is lingering over my family. I do not have a way to come out from under it. Every day I practice the speech I have to give to our little girl when I explain to her that her daddy is going away for a long time because of something he did not do. I still haven't figured out how this is affecting me other than adding additional stress.

This was the year for my total Knee replacement surgery. Going in, I was fearful ( make that terrified) both of the operation and the recovery afterward. Now, 4 1/2 months later I am relieved, and have found strength to take on the challenges of regaining full mobility. The actuality of the situation was not like my worst imaginings... a good lesson for future challenges!

We lost Eddie after 19+ years. It was shattering yet expected. He loved Doritos and unbeknownst to me - before our vet came in to help him up into the cosmos, David took out a little container with crushed doritos in it and poured them in his hand and Eddie ate them all. It was heartwrenching and so moving and filled with such love I was speechless. One for the road. He looked like a Kliban Cat. For almost 20 years of this wonderful cat - called by a friend "the world's cutest kitten". He shines on.

I quit my job of nearly five years to go back to school. Giving up that stability and putting in my notice was in many ways terrifying, and the transition was extremely stressful (and is still ongoing in many ways) but I'm excited and in many ways relieved: I needed the change.

Having a third child and spending several months of maternity leave with all of the kids. Best decision ever.

I got a new job, which seems to be a yearly thing for me, and I moved (also a yearly thing). Both grateful -- looking forward to growing and creating new memories

There were a lot of significant experiences last year, from the cruise with A's family, through cleaning out my mom's big house in the country, doing my first reading, rewriting my first novel while living in Holland... But the one to describe is probably cleaning out the big house in the country. The first weekend we were all there -- R, L, H, with help from Mom's helpers. The sheer volume of stuff was not do-able, and there were many tense moments and a fair amount of sniping. Mom is if anything, still worried about doing things right, especially where A's legacy is concerned. She wants to oversee every detail and when R and I went through the books without her she was angry -- though she could go through all the books we'd marked to give away and move them to the "keep" section. But as with her birthday and cleaning out the other house, there was a sense of camaraderie with my brothers that made the whole thing enjoyable in that "put on a show" effort way that I love. I wish I was better at doing those things by myself. I went back for a second week and only R could come, but we finished -- the moving vans came, the chandelier was taken down and given away, the kitchen emptied. And it was sad. Though I haven't had an emotional connection to that house since it was redone when A died, it was one more door closing on an era. I'm not sure how sad I was then -- there was so much of that expended during the cleaning of "our" house and around all these changes in general that I can't really place my bouts of tearfulness in time. There was definitely a huge amount of relief. Some concerns about stuff and hanging on to it... Not inspirational, though, I will say it made me more likely to go through my own stuff sooner rather than later. More along the lines of another brick in the wall, the wall of growing older -- and being happy about that in and of itself, while I also find myself questioning a lot about my long time habit of looking to the past for who I am and a certain kind of happiness I will never experience again -- vs. the living in the present and moving forward parts of the rest of my life.

My husband definitive diagnostic. SHIT A big chi t is life, isn’t it????????????????????????????????????????????

I met a girl who cemented the recognition that as a Dominant, I need a true submissive to be fulfilled. Although I'd played with this dynamic before, and recognised it was at the root of the failure of previous relationships, to have the full submission of a girl has been rewarding in a way I've not known before.

I've been lucky enough to transition back to living in Denver again with the past year and a half. Since then, I've been even luckier to get hired into a job where I'm making more money. Life has been aligning up nicely especially socially. Really hoping that the next great thing will be to meet someone special who's into me.

I would say my decision to go back to school for paralegal certification. My boyfriend had decided to go back to school for medical assistant training, and that got me to thinking about my own future. At the time, there didn't seem to be any upward mobility at my current job. And this had been a place I wanted to stay with because I felt it a good company to work for. But turning 40 this year, I had other things I needed to take care of: debts, saving for retirement, etc. So, this catapulted my decision to go back to school for other professional aspirations. It showed me I have what it takes to be willing to let go of something that may not serve me anymore. And that felt like it took a huge stranglehold off me. I no longer felt stuck in a rut, and I felt like I could go anywhere now. God as usual had different plans. A position later opened up where I was promoted to supervisor at my current job. But that was with everyone having full knowledge of what wheels and plans I'd already set in motion at the beginning of the year. But I take this as a lesson that once I'm willing to let go of something I once thought of was something good for me, God will pour more blessings in my lap. He meant for me to keep this job for now, but in a better position with better pay. All while still continuing my plans to go to school. And I'll be undergoing management training in my current position which will make myself more marketable in the professional world. I just have to keep myself open to any possibilities that come along. As a side note, getting funding for class was an adventure in of itself. Trying to get funding through the federal government (where I wouldn't have to pay it back) fell through. So, for the first time ever, I had to go the student loan route and get a co-signer. I have to be prepared to accept whatever consequences, positive or negative, that come of this. But another thing it is allowing me to do is take care of some outstanding debts in the meantime. So, in many ways, I'm beginning the New Year with a clean slate.

Yesterday, my sister who is 11 years older than me texted me to tell me that she has skin cancer removed from her face. This spooked me out. I'm thankful she told me. But, I feel bad that she has had this experience. As for me, I am very much inspired to pursue skin cancer talks with my own family doctor.

The owners of the townhouse we were renting decided to sell and not renew our lease in September, so in July our time was totally spent looking for a new residence to move to. It was a bit depressing because we had already tossed out so much of our possessions when we moved from our home of 20 years to living in someone else's home, and now needed to toss out more possessions, including the washer/dryer which we owned since Tandy was born... but it went to a good home for some other family to enjoy. As the saying goes; the best things in life are NOT "things" and for that we are the wealthiest family I know! We managed to find a place that's 95% terrific, with a great view of the Harbor and walking distance to the beach and only 2 miles from where Tandy and Tim will be staying for the WEDDING, so it's all good. I'm grateful that I have a job and the income was just enough for us to pay for the move and my credit was good enough to be approved to move and cover the other expenses, but I'm also a bit resentful that all these financial obligations are on MY shoulders...however, I am IMSPIRED by the fact I managed to created a fantastic publication that everyone loves that will, in time I'm sure, generate the income I'm looking to create so that by this time next year we'll have the best of all worlds! A great place to live and money enough to enjoy it!

I was recently placed on furlough, and will probably lose my job by the beginning of November. My company is losing business in my area, and it was just a result of changing times. I am trying to stay calm and focused, and take advantage of the time I am given away from the office. I am a little bit relieved to have a long break from work. I haven't taken a long (more than a week or two) leave of absence from any of my consulting projects since the last time I was unemployed in 2004. It is amazing how much is going on during the time I usually spent at work. I had a chance to read "Wooden on Leadership" in the last few weeks. It has inspired me to strive for excellence in what I do every day, by dedicating some time to health (which is the foundation of life) and contemplation (which is the foundation of humanity). I am also trying to change my attitude towards the every day, where I feel inspired by every day, instead of a slave to it. Still a work in progress (as we all are :-) We'll see how things go in the next few weeks--If I don't have a job by the end of October, I may lose some of my cool about the situation.

This past year I decided officially that I want to become a Rabbi. It's hard for me to think about it very critically as significant as I'm somewhat stuck (not stuck, just confused) on my applications to Rabbinical school. It is such a wonderful and big goal that I have though, so I am nervous. There are real and difficult steps very near ahead of me. I am grateful though. I have a direction with my life, which many my age do not, and I know that what I do with my life will serve other people and my community, which is of the utmost importance to me. It has inspired me to be a little more guarded around my personal life, for some reason. We'll see, but I am looking forward to the process.

Unfortunately the most signicant event has been tragic. My mother suffered a stroke and nothing in her life will ever be the same. . It is a wake up to how precious every day is and never take anything G-d has for granted. So cliche but true.

In the first 7 days of starting a new job in a new city in a new state, I found out a friend had back stabbed me with a spiteful ex, I had a scope shoved down my throat and found acid reflux, had a cyst sliced open and drained on my chest, and dealt with an epididymitis flare up that became chronic. Yet I stayed happy. I was energetic, full of life, excitement, and positivity. That month taught me that I can survive anything. It will be tiring, it will be painful, but I can and will flourish from any situation I find myself in.

I graduated with a Ba in Architectural History after four and a half years of part-time study next to work. I'm super proud of gaining a degree at age 39 and still basking in the relief of no longer having to work day and night to finish all my assignments. I enjoyed my studies immensely and I'd like to do a Master sometime, but it's also been very, very tough so I'm glad it's behind me.

The process of changing jobs allowed me some true reflection through evaluating what 'counts' for me. Establishing my own value system and taking action instilled confidence. Acting on not only instincts but analysis helped me develop a new sense of self.

I became a great grandma at 59. And had a grandson and granddaughter born as well. In the midst of this, consequences from the past, not my doing,but perhaps my inability to react, have threatened to steal my future. Do you always forgive? For peace? To not deal with things? Was the sorry sincere? How does one know and carry on?

I was with my beloved father when he died, holding his hand. It was profoundly beautiful, intensely sad, and pushed me into a space where I wonder about the meaning of life? I like that space. It is familiar to me, because I first found myself there when my husband died five years ago. It's a clear space. So much of the chatter of life seems banal, trivial. I am grateful to have had this wonderful dad, and to have been with him at the end of his life.

Honed my apathy. Brought me a little peace, to be bothered less by things.

I outed myself at work as anti-death penalty. Though I am a prosecutor, I did not realize the repercussions this announcement would have. I also demonstrated poor judgment surrounding this issue. It was one of the worst professional experiences I have had. My direct supervisor did not stand up for me. I felt misled amd poorly supervised. I had a double murder case - one that I had helped develop as a double murder - taken away from me. I had several unpleasant meetings and I cried in front of people who I wish had not seen me cry. Later in the summer, my work assignment changed. I was told that the death penalty debacle had nothing to do with this unrequested and unwanted reassignment, but things appeared otherwise. Two weeks into the new assignment, i am still a bit resentful over how things went down. Yet I am enjoying my new assignment more than I expected to, and I find it more compatible with being a spouse and a parent than my former assignment. There is still plenty of work, but the work can happen more on my schedule and there is a far greater degree of autonomy. The whole thing forced me to reassess my priorities, which were admittedly out of whack, with an overemphasis on work and a negative view toward the role of my family.

A fracture was discovered in my son's back. This has caused much upset and worry, and a great deal of anger towards his dad for constantly pushing him to participate in dangerous sports. Fortunately, he doesn't require surgery yet, but it just adds worry and upset to my life. My husband and I have had to have difficult conversations about our finances; the lack of income contribution from him over the past two years has caused us both great stress. Additionally, I decided to keep my dad's house, obtain a mortgage to make needed repairs, but I am unwilling to share the home with my husband and all of my children in the event of my death. This decision has been very stressful for me and has caused me to feel guilty, selfish and also very protective of my security, which was left to me by my dad. I wonder if my husband's ability to contribute a bit more over the past two years would've changed how I feel, because mostly I have been feeling not secure and unsafe as a result. I know my husband loves me so much though; it isn't that type of safety issue. I think I would have still ended up making this decision, to honor my dad's wishes, but it does go against how I would normally respond and feel. I have worked very hard to get control over my sleep, with some success, but not enough. This journey too, has caused stress and upset, so I need to let go of trying for a while. Instead now, I am turning to finding healthy ways to reduce stress by using yoga, meditation, some changes to my diet and volunteer work to help me focus on bigger things than my own tiny world. People need help and I have been so lucky to receive so much support throughout my life in order to get here, I am hoping to help someone else, if I can, and spend more time in the moment, enjoying my life and the love I receive.

We moved to PA from VA. It was a long, stressful process of packing and cleaning, mostly by myself due to Tim's work schedule. Now that we are here I am so happy. I was excited but also very nervous about how everything would work out. A little over a month in, and we are almost 100% unpacked, the kids have started school and Tim is still doing great with his job. I am starting to figure out what to do with my time and am looking forward to each new day!

I was able to travel with my children . They are incredible men and we had a grand time. I feel so lucky and so awed by them!

I was part of the Rabbinic Search Committee to hire our new rabbi. It was a great committee and an amazing process. Also very anxiety-provoking since we didn't know if we'd find the right person. But we did! I am grateful that the process went so smoothly and that our whole community came together through this experience. I am extremely relieved and grateful that we were successful. I am inspired by the people I worked with and continue to work with in making this major transition in our congregational life. I am moved and enriched by our new rabbi. I am very glad to see our retired rabbi, with whom I am friends, look so much younger and happier now that the weight of the congregation has been lifted off of his shoulders. Kol hakavod

I learned to drive a car and got my driver's license, when already in my forties. It was something that I had never before believed that I could do. The impact that it had on me has been profound. The simple act of getting into a car and going someplace has changed how I see myself and how I define my life and my role in the world. I no longer have to rely on people in order to do the things I need and want to do. I am capable of taking care of myself now.

I quit drinking in July 2015. It's only been two months, and I've experienced a wide range of emotions. Grateful because I am being proactive about my health. Relieved that I don't have to worry about paying attention to how much I'm drinking. Resentful that others around me can continue to drink. Angry at myself for not being able to moderate. By the time these answers come back to me next year, I hope I will not have relapsed, and will have more than a year of sobriety behind me.

Got fired from another job.

I proposed to Amy and we had our civil wedding in May. What was planned to be just her brother, my sister, the two of us and a judge ended up being 18 people in person and 7 on devices. The day was beautiful, the judge was a mensch, and the moment we wrapped ourselves in Amy's father's tallit was a moment where we were completely alone an bonding forever. We have fought off and on, but never fight dirty. Most arguments are more from irritation than from fundamental differences. After such a twisted parade of (in)significant others, I'm still stunned and grateful that we have found each other. We celebrate with friends and family in a Jewish wedding ceremony right before Sukkot starts this year. No matter what else goes on in the world or in our lives, I am certain I have married the one I was meant to be with.

I have finally found a nutrition plan that has helped me lose over 30 pounds in less than 2 months. Purium has changed my life! I started at 95kilos at the beginning of August and by September 11th, I weigh 80kilos! I am on a mission to change the way I eat and become fit and clean from additives in foods. I want to eat more healthy foods and stay slim and fit. Purium has done all this and more! Anyone who wants a 50 dollar gift card can go to www.purim.com and use the code newfityou You could be a better you by next year!

Deaths of extended family members (Janice and Norm and Mary and Paulette) reminding me about the fragility of life. Mike is health threatened and Susan is battling thyroid cancer. Eric is battling cancer as well. I am reflective - ware of my mortality in a big way and reminded to treasure life while I have it (in this dimension).

My husband and I celebrated our 5 year marriage anniversary. I can't believe we've been together for 7 years as a couple; especially as we were still newly sober. We fought in the car per usual. But what struck me, was how much we have been through and how much we have grown together and individually. We've dealt with my multiple surgeries due to BRCA1 issues and cancer scare; sick animals; loss of job; change in jobs; my return to and completion of grad school; my father'so relapse. Through all of this there has been as much laughter as anger; as much respect as befuddlement; and more vs. less love.

A terrible series of arguments with my daughter that initially what was said to me in anger, I took very personally and responded wrongly, but upon reflection saw that I must live my teachings of Torah and come from a place of understanding and love. I am grateful that I can try to see the whole picture, knowing this is another lesson for me to be a better person.

My job has become the most boring disheartening and uncertain Job it can possibly be. I feel tired and worn out, giving that little extra to make things happen and try to turn this around, I keep hitting the wall. Any moment I can get fired, just because. I am living every day afraid to become unemployed, loose my house, loose my car but most of all loose my self esteem and confidence , I am afraid to not be able to provide to my family.

I had my first daughter in August 2014, and the first year (plus) of parenting has been an incredible journey. And in May I learned I was pregnant with my second daughter. At first I was overwhelmed, but now I am grateful and overjoyed. And still a little overwhelmed, to be honest.

My brother who was schizophrenic hung himself in prison. I am saddened that he could never get his life together but relieved at the same time that he is in a better place.

I quit my teaching job in June. It was a momentous, necessary and exciting thing to do. After being treated in an awful way by my principal it became clear I had no future in the school where I had taught for 13 years. I had poured all my love into that job and was a deeply important member of the small school community. Yet I realized I had had it with the way I was treated and took a stand. I jumped into the unknown and quit with no plan. It felt liberating and sad and scary and exciting. I am in turns exuberant and mystified. Most of all I have had to take the emotional "high road," be resilient, network and reinvent myself. I am, for the first time in years, in control of my time and my future. There are so many possibilities.

I landed (and am about to lose) yet another ad agency job. I feel as if the universe has been sending me a message, and I've been ignoring it. Well, no more. I've been unhappy with my work for years. What I'm really struggling with is what's next? What should I do next? And of course I'm worried about money...(so what's new?) So while I'm largely relieved - getting pushed out is most likely for the best - I'm also angry, nervous, and yes, I'm scared. I need to follow through this time and do work that has purpose and meaning. 'Cause ad agency work sure as hell ain't it.

I paid a large debt this year. It was a debt that had crushed me for years beneath anger and sorrow and guilt. Paying that debt made me feel stronger and it set me free. I'm grateful that we could make that happen. I'm relieved that it's behind me. And, no, I don't feel resentful. You know that saying by Alexander Graham Bell? "When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us." Resentment does that to us, I think. Instead, I feel like a caged bird who happened upon a song of deliverance and, when I sang it, 27 doors opened all at once and I had my choice of directions. Right now, I'm sitting on the perch, looking through those spaces that are unhindered by bars. There are no closed doors here. All the doors are open.

I went to my high school reunion after 50 years. I was very touched to see the faces that had populated my life as a child and teen. I saw that I had grown and become the person that I had dreamed of becoming then. I felt proud and grateful and surprised and sad for the people who did not live long enough to see this event.

I entered into a new romantic relationship. At first I think I was just pleased and surprised that anyone would be interested in me. Then, as the year went on, I started thinking that I was settling again and that I needed to end the relationship for something "else". I also ended therapy - my therapist retired and also thought I would be fine on my own. And I basically am fine - a few slips, such as with Avi and All Stars, but all in all, I have been ok. The standard seems to be o.k.

My partner's mother has re accepted me back in her life, I am grateful and relieved as she did not speak to me for 2.5 years. Onwards and upwards.

I've had several significant experiences this year, but the two I feel best relate to this question are that I graduated, and my maternal grandmother passed away. Graduation was wonderful, and finally completing my undergraduate degree gave me a sense of achievement and of grown-up ness. My grandmother died the same weekend I handed in my dissertation. I no longer have any grandparents, and she was also my last link to my mother (who passed away when I was 14). Now I feel a deep sadness for the things I can't show her or tell her, I can't send her the article of my published dissertation, or call her to tell her I got a new dress she'd like. But at the time, all I felt was relief. She was ill for so long and so many times we had been called to say she only had a few days left. And it feels selfish because she was the one going through all this, but having to mentally prepare myself for her death repeatedly was something I really struggled with. And after a certain point she wasn't aware of how ill she was, but we were. I am also inspired, because she was a woman of great learning - taking up Latin and Greek in her 70s, doing the daily crosswords, having a constant stream of books. I don't have a way to sum this up, but I am pleased I've finally been able to say all these things.

Bought a house. Despite being a significant milestone, it was a relatively easy process, however the following weeks were the most stressful I have ever had with feelings of confusion, regret and anxiety. These feelings lasted a couple of weeks until I had settled in and come to terms with what we had done. I soon loved the house and have enjoyed the 4 weeks we have lived here.

This year I gave birth to my perfect baby boy. It wasn't the natural, calm and beautiful experience I wanted, and I still have some regrets about that, but I would go through it all again for my son. It has changed my life in so many ways, and although I miss some aspects of child free life, I am happier than ever to have my little family.

My husband passed away after a long illness, dying on the first day of Rosh Hashanah. Tonight I go to temple, and as I walk thru our house, I see him everywhere, and miss his kindness and sense of humor. The Rabbi said that dying on Rosh Hashanah was a very "special" time, because it meant a New Beginning for both of us.

I'm very resentful, I lost my father, my mother and my aunt are battling cancer and my cousin was murdered. I would like to understand if we are good people why are we being punished in this way?

(1) Our son graduated from law school. How did we feel? proud! (2) The iran deal went through. How do we feel? Frustrated, worried about how this will "go down".

We had a big anniversary and shared it with friends in Italy and then with our family at a Dude Ranch. It made us feel very grateful for our relationships and blessings. We are inspired to continue to bring those we love into our lives with joy and appreciation.

In the past year the most significant experience has been adapting to my father's declining cognitive abilities. He has Lewy Body Dementia with symptoms that come and go from day to day and hour to hour. This effects his physical health (blood pressure, balance, etc) and mental and emotional states (hallucinations, depression), as well as cognitive ability and level of awareness. He is a survivor of a Nazi death camp, quite independent minded and, how can I describe it - he is a Survivor. There have been many changes in our relationship this year and it has been hard on all family members in the home. I am grateful for support we receive from the Alzheimer's Association, for my daughters for their guiding patience (I aspire to be more like them), and for my husband and our shared sense of humor in challenging times.

About a year and two months ago I moved to the Bay Area after accepting my first full-time job after college. This prolonged experience has been frustrating, demanding, stressful; and yet incredibly rewarding. I find myself inspired by the change of scenery, from the dusty cacti of Arizona to the rolling fog and hills of Northern California. While at times I lose sight of the beautiful culture and scenery because of the soaring price of living in this place, weekends like this past Labor Day spent in the Castle Crags Wilderness remind me why I fell in love when I moved here.

I decided to quit graduate school. I am very grateful and relieved. I now have more time for my family, myself and the things in life that I enjoy doing. I think I was going to school for the wrong reasons and I think I quit for the right reasons.

My dad is in the rehab hospital after five days in ICU due to atrial fibrillation. He is very weak, and I'm afraid that he may not get to go home. On the one hand, I would be very sad if that happened, but I also know they need to be living where they can have help. Maybe if someone else (a medical professional) tells the they will listen and the decision won't be as hard.

In January, I was fired from an organization where I worked for four years. It's been an intensely painful, emotional process to work through it, and with the help of a lot of therapy I'm just now starting to get to the point where I can accept that that organization was never going to be somewhere that I could both adhere to my values and be successful. I've learned how much I value kindness, transparency, and respect in the workplace, and that's a lesson I'm grateful to have learned.

I started therapy. It's been a little bit two steps forward and one step back - a wound needs to bleed and let the pus out before it can heal - but I'm optimistic about the process and my personal growth. It may be the hardest thing I've ever done on a consistent basis, but I absolutely needed it.

The significant experience that comes to mind is my Dad's chemotherapy. The six sessions started February 9, and were administered every 3 weeks. I rearranged my schedule, giving up certain activities, so I could visit my parents each month. I joined him during the sessions a few times, which demystified the process. Dad got excellent care and was an excellent patient. The miracle of it all is that Dad came through with a clean bill of health. I visited again last weekend, and it was so wonderful seeing him with his energy restored. He has just returned to attending Berkeley Breakfast Club and working on the Jeremiah O'Brien. He is so pleased and happy. Just last Monday he enjoyed his first beer in a year. I feel grateful, relieved, joyous.

I have left a place that has been home to me for most of my life. I am sad and happy, relieved and fearful--in waves, at once, and in fits and starts.

I am still in the middle of this experience. I decided to participate in all the Susan G Komen 3 Day 60 mile walks. There are seven between August and the third weekend of November. That is 400 miles not including training miles. I had to raise just over $16,000. This is my 10 th year to walk and I had walked in 14 total until this year. Each year raising the minimum $2300 per walk has become more difficult. So I was worried about raising 16k. I can hardly believe the generosity of my friends and family. Some even donated multiple times over a seven month period. I became completely funded one week before my first walk. How do I feel? Humble, grateful, and loved.

I had surgery for a benign tumor in my inner auditory canal. I felt many things-grateful, relieved, surprised, thankful for being already in good health for my recovery, grateful to family and friends for their support, curious about what's ahead, glad I chose to go to a place where the doctors were skilled and compassionate, and more connected to being mindful and soulful in my daily life. It's been a roller-coaster but I would not be the person I am today without it and I have less fear of coping with life's ups and downs.

Throwing my future path out to the universe and sincerely asking for guidance and opening myself to change and growth. The opportunities to expand past my comfort zone and write/peer into the scary places has opened me to knowing myself again after many years of coasting and ignoring my own evolution. The answers that have materialized and culminating with the move to Portland is quite the trajectory of change. Except for the earthquake thing, I'm feeling hopeful and exhuberant!

This year, I moved to Cleveland. Oh my God, THIS YEAR I MOVED TO CLEVELAND. Wait, let's back up. It's strange to think that I've spent almost the entirety of 5775 in Ohio; I keep thinking D.C. was just a couple months ago. But shortly after the High Holidays in Fall 2014, I visited home - I can't even remember why - & decided that I was going to move back. I tricked myself a little bit, I think, because the weather was beautiful & the trees were brightly colored & the air was crisp - it was Ohio at its best, & by the time I moved back in November, it was cold & dreary & depressing. But nonetheless, I moved back. I came home. I lived with my mom for eight months, & in July, I moved to Tremont to become a real, live Clevelander, after all this time. I am grateful, I am relieved, I am inspired. I am so thankful that I have made of my life what it is right now, in this moment, & I hope with all my might that I can hold on to this level of happiness. There were times when I didn't think I'd make it here - but here I am.

I learned that an acquaintance I had slept with maybe 3 times was pregnant with my child, and we decided to keep it. We immediately set out to create a home to bring the child into. There were serious logistical challenges: she has a rowdy 6 year-old child, she has two large and rowdy dogs, she lived in a rural farmhouse, she earns very little money. I am, more than not, in warrior mode: just getting it done hopefully as gracefully as possible. She and I get along well, and, I know that she and I will be able to hold a conversation about our child together for at least 20 years. It sounds like such a low bar, but it's much higher bar than my, and many, parents can manage. So, given that, and that she's intelligent, healthy, creative and compassionate, I think the child will feel well cared for by us both.

I started working for a new company. My previous job made me upset and sad and didn't fulfil me. The new job isn't the perfect job, but it's much better. I'm respected and that's a huge improvement.

I spent four weeks with Deborah and Matt before Isabela's birth. It was hard. I needed more than they had to give. But they wanted me and I was able to tell her I felt under thanked. And the next visit was much better. And we really got into retirement -- travelled, enjoyed each other. I really, really love Mike. A huge fight with Dan that hurt a lot, but was his way to showing his allegiance to Emma. Sarah got a new job, but I was mean to her in the process, when I was exhausted.

I got married! It was an amazing experience to decide to get married, fully with our eyes open, and to plan a wedding. It was very detailed, a huge amount of work, and at times I really was tempted to elope. The work we did on our ketubah and the song I wrote for my husband were real highlights, and they continue to directly impact and help us through our arguments and hard moments.

I went to the mikva and finally finished conversion. I am so supremely grateful for the support of my family, sponsoring rabbi, community and friends. It is a privilege to be a member of Am Yisrael and as I celebrate my first official rosh hsShanah my prayer is to never lose sight of that blessing.

Meting Elliot in New York. It was a wonderful awareness for me that I could meet a man I liked and still have a conversation. I am very grateful and inspiredto take the next steps to not be alone.

I moved to Lexington, KY. I'm grateful for the opportunity, relieved to be employed - even though the new beginnings was a source of some anxiety.

I quit my first adult job after staying there for three years and started a new job -- I'm a month into this new job, but I already resent it deeply and have rekindled the job hunt. I am aiming to leave this job before next month is over. I thought that switching jobs would fix everything, but it hasn't because it turns out this isn't the right job. I feel really confused and sad and stressed out -- this is the hardest my life has been... trying to deal with my quarter life crisis. Throughout adolescence and early adulthood, everyone tells you that all you have to do is go to college and pick a career field and get a job and everything will be fine. But now I'm 25, and life is not fine. I don't know what I'm doing with my life at all but I know that I have been and still am dissatisfied.

My aunt passed away this spring. On a single day she got her diagnosis and a prognosis of: two months. That two months has been plaguing me. It has had me thinking over my life, re-examining huge life decisions. I guess I can be grateful for the opportunity to look at things and make changes, as well as inspired to make change, while at the same time that I mourn her loss. Actually, I am also mourning my own life in some ways- bad decisions, lack of direction.

Having a child sick with a rare autoimmune disorder and then a new baby with failure to thrive, torticollis, tongue tie, etc., has left me exhausted. So grateful for my community of loving friends who brought meals and hugs and lifted us up in so many ways, but frustrated that pediatricians aren't trained in breastfeeding and tongue ties, and with people who might mean well, but say "He looks great!" As if that is the end of it. It's hard to take care of sick children, to not know how things will turn out, or even what the next step should be, and have well meaning people dismiss your concerns because things look okay on the surface. As if I am worried over nothing. The most helpful people gave been the ones who listened, and hugged, and held some of my sadness and worry with me for awhile, instead of trying to make me feel better.

I fell in love. I gave myself to the intoxicating and terrifying feeling that accompanied that experience. I am grateful, inspired, hurt, and embarrassed. I am learning.

In February I had an abortion. Although I completely respect and support a woman's right to choose, this is not an experience I ever thought I would have and it affected me in ways I could not have imagined. As traumatic, exhausting and emotionally painful as the situation was, in the end it brought me gratitude and relief. I had never let myself overtly mourn something with such emotion, or let others in my life in on such a vulnerable life event. The event brought me closer to my partner, family and friends in ways I could not have imagined.

It has been a year of significant experiences, life-altering both in wonderful and grief-striking ways. Truly the most significant, the one that looms largest, is the rapid advancement of my father-in-law's cancer. It has been a lesson in humility, love, and compassion to watch how he has dealt with and shared about his upcoming death and the advancement of the disease. It has been a lesson in grief and in modulating my own anger and pain, of putting myself second, and third, to support my partner, his mother, his father. It has been a lesson in acceptance and the power of powerlessness. To say he is dying and know that it is true and that nothing anyone can do can change that immutable fact. It has been a lesson in the significance one person can have to so many as his colleagues, students, friends, and even strangers have shared the impact he and his work has had on them and their communities. I am horrified and desperately sad and furious about this. It's a tragedy for me, for our family, but also for the larger world in which he has done, and would have continued to do, such wonderful work. I don't know how the next year will go, but I am as certain as one can be that next time I'm answering these questions, the world will have lost an incredible, wonderful person that I am honored to know and love.

I got promoted at work. I suppose I've been a mix of grateful and inspired, but also it's caused me some anxiety... On the one hand, it's a new opportunity and in many ways a new type of freedom. I have control over an entire department. I have subordinates who have subordinates and am over a team of probably 35 people total. That's new and a different level of responsibility. I think I've grown from it. I've learned a lot and had to quickly adjust my style of dealing with problems and people. Made a few mistakes and tried some things that didn't work, but I've learned and corrected them. Also got introduced to management politics, which I don't care for. At this level, I'm dealing with a lot of egos and power struggles and people putting spins on information depending on their agenda.

I had my first tough breakup. I'm glad I did it but still not over him. I'm relieved because I was not happy in the situation but I really liked him. I now want to spend time focusing on myself and my life as an individual and not spend so much time running around for another person. The breakup actually inspired me to change and grow. I am trying new things. Majorly, I am trying to fight instead of fly. We all have the fight or flight reaction and I am defiantly a flier. I realized that my problems do not disappear when I leave them cause I always come back and they're still there, so now I'm trying to fight through my emotions and all the problems that come in life.

THE past year was filled with many great moments: like Nathan and Fien moving in together, him finding more and more his place in the world he likes: video and film. Sarah loving her studies and succeeding her year again. These things made me very happy and satisfied and relieved, especially after the difficult year that preceded. Me starting to write my book. Preparation from April, writing since July. It occupies me a lot mentally. Maybe it is the beginning of a new stage in my work...curious

Mother moved in with me; at first I was resentful. now I am thankful and even inspired. At first I felt I was having something taken away from me; my freedom, my privacy, my space. Really none of that happened but I kept thinking it. Eventually it took a heated situation to get me to realize that I am very lucky to have my mother with me.

It's funny. What comes to mind is actually experienced by my 91-y.o. mother. Her two remaining friends in her co-op building died within about 2 weeks of each other. This made me wonder what my part should be in increasing my activities with her (it is my brother who does the heavy lifting, which is not physical at all -- she is fully self-sufficient), and especially how much I should "encourage" her to move to a progressive care situation, preferably closer to me. Her friend died the day before he was to be moved to assisted living, and I don't want her to deteriorate (the stress of the move and of making new friends (unlikely to be Jewish here, though not sure how vital to her), leaving her many, ongoing activities at nearby senior center), because I am trying to make it easier for her? or for me?

My smicha as a Kohenet Hebrew Priestess. I feel the energetic shift within me. I am more deeply connected to The One, including as wo-manifested in my holy community of Kohanot. My authentic path is feeling clearer than ever in my life.

I lost all but the smallest aspects of my professional work, (cut from full-time to two days a week), and was immersed in a highly competitive research endeavor outside my area of expertise. I had been treading water, landed on the presumed safety of a large grant and did my best to keep up. I was grateful at the start, and somewhat relieved. At the end I was resentful of the issues that prevented my ability to meaningfully engage, however the experience was inspiring. I learned that I need to take a different path. I found that I have a passion for an important area of work that is genuinely a part of who I am. Now the challenge is to create the opportunities I need to contribute what I have to share.

Adam and Victoria breaking up. Relieved because he is not the one and he hurt her so bad. Mad at him for hurting her and hoping she moves on quickly.

We had our first child on January 5th of this year. It has had a really positive affect on me but I am also tired, and I have a lot less money. She came 6-weeks early, and my wife was very sick, so I am relieved that everyone is okay now (almost 9 months later). I did not know if I would be good with a baby, as I have never been around young children before, but it has been awesome. It is really amazing to watch her develop a personality, and I love making her laugh.

I lost my daughter Rosie at 21 weeks gestation In April. Rosie was planned to be born when my eldest daughter started primary school so that when I had a year off work on maternity leave I would be settling my daughter into school and there to take her and pick her up every day. Unfortunately because I lost my daughter before 24 weeks gestation I wasn't entitled to maternity leave at all and I had no childcare cover to help drop off my daughter or pick her up from school so I had to leave my job too. Obviously this has had a major impact on my life. I'm no longer independent and rely entirely on my partner to provide for me and my daughters. I have been told I have post traumatic stress disorder and attend counselling. I get anxiety. I have a very low threshold for stressful situations, I have very little patience and am very angry a lot of the time. I cry over things that never used to upset me. I have insomnia. And nightmares. I am easily distracted, fidgety, have a small concentration span. I have no idea where my life is headed, what tomorrow will bring. My future is very uncertain and that scares me.

Our son Charley moved home. I am so happy he has chosen to come back. I don't know how long he will be here, but I'm so grateful he is here. I can see how much he has matured. I can also see all he has learned in his MBA program. I had wondered if it was worth the expense--only he can tell, but I can see that he seems very educated in his responses to things.

My oldest son and his wife got divorced; they have 3 young children. I don't know if resentful is the right word, but I was upset with both of them. I very much want to continue to spend time with grandchildren and have their life as stable as possible. Both parents are working very hard at this and the children seem to be doing well. Since I have Parkinson's I am not physically as strong as I would like to be to do more for them.

I had sleeve surgery and lost over 60 lbs. Became more fit. Came off all steroids and off the insulin pump. It really made me aware of how off I've been over DECADES. I am blessed with another chance and beautiful women who inspire me

The state stepped in after Mitch overdosed, and ordered him to a 24 hour care facility. He is now permanently in a board and care. I am quite relieved that he is in a safe environment and I am free of his care taking, except for overseeing it. His Father died and left a trust so I'm able to afford to pay for the care. I am both relieved and grateful.

I got pregnant again, after going through cancer treatment and suffering two early miscarriages. I had fertility treatment and embryos frozen, but it turns out I didn't need them. I'm writing this now with the ipad balanced on top of my 34 week bump; the contents of which are wriggling frantically as I've just eaten my tea and he's objecting to his already cramped space becoming even more cramped. When I stop to think about it, I honestly don't know how I feel. I never thought I'd be able to have another child. I'm still scared that everything will go wrong, even though I have a cesarean booked in 38 weeks time. I'm scared that I've made the wrong decision to extend my family; that my cancer could come back and that this time, it won't be treatable and I'll be leaving two little boys and my husband behind. I know it's not likely, but those thoughts never really go away. I'm trying to concentrate on the 'now'. Right now, I'm fed up of my gestational diabetes, my incredible pelvic pain that means I'm on crutches, my inability to really DO anything or leave the house. I am also very excited to know I'll be welcoming another little boy into my family very shortly. I want those new baby cuddles again. I didn't appreciate them the first time around. Now I will.

There are two, really, that have snowballed. The first was that after over a year of fertility treatments, I finally got pregnant in January! Only to have a miscarriage in March. Because of our continued inability to have human children, and not having the money yet to be able to adopt, we view our cats as our children. At the start of this year, we had four - Coralie, Pandora, Killer, and Sebastian. At the end of June, we responded to an emergency plea from the shelter through which we adopted Sebby... There was a fire and they needed emergency fosters for the animals. Without question, we drove the nearly 90 miles to help out.. After all, it was because of them that we had our precious Sebby! So we brought Tyrion and Cerium - then Carter and Serenade - into our lives. They were very sick at first, from smoke inhalation. Ceri was about three months old and Tyri was only about three weeks! But with attention, love and the right meds, they are both happy and healthy today. In nursing them through, we noticed that Sebby seemed very skinny but we missed that he was not eating at all. As soon as I realized, in mid-July, I took him to the vet. They said it was just jealousy of the little ones. It didn't improve and he seemed worse so we took him back a few days later. UTI, they said, and gave us meds. That helped a little but a week later he was not eating at all again. This time they did blood work. This was a Wednesday, and his red blood cells were critically low - he was lethargic and very anemic. The vet kept him and by Friday we had to take him to another state to an emergency vet for a blood transfusion. They kept him there, and did a myriad of scans and tests, and a second transfusion. No one seemed to have any answers and as we knew it was a matter of time until we lost him, on Tuesday we brought him home. Our wonderful vet monitored him daily but we kept him at home. That Saturday morning, we had to make the "decision". We still don't know what was ultimately wrong - just that his time had run out. It was devastating for me. Sebby was the baby, my innocent - and to lose our only chance at a human baby and then him, too?! I was out of work for a few weeks, just overwhelmed with grief. I was utterly heartbroken, and I blamed myself for both losses. After a lifetime struggle with depression, I haven't been that close to feeling suicidal in years. It's been a little over a month now. I miss him dreadfully, but I'm not so volatile about it. We decided to keep the kittens - if it weren't for Sebby, we wouldn't have known about the shelter Fire and they wouldn't have come into our lives. What's more, we took Tyrion up to the shelter for some vaccination boosters last week, and while there, my husband bonded with a female kitten, Milky Way, who reminded him of Sebby. Before I knew it, he had adopted her, too. We've renamed her Arya, and she's just inbetween the ages of Tyri and Ceri - and what a lover she is! And she, too, wouldn't be in our lives without Sebastian. So in these events I certainly haven't been relieved. I've been resentful at times. I've been in the depths of despairing sadness. But now, I'm thankful for the time we had with Sebby, and thankful for the three little lives that are now intwined with our because of his!

I recovered from a significant emotional trauma this year. I am still working on it, but I am stronger and closer to being myself again. Along with remembering why things were important and why I liked who I was.... I am able to be more compassionate. I am still working on things. It is important to remember that because I need to be compassionate to myself as well.

Got a job, relocated for it and then it was cancelled. I feel like I'm a hamster on a wheel trying so hard. It pushes me to find a place of spirituality. Looking for a way to create peace in my life in G_d or the Universe.

Two people in my life are fighting cancer. One very seriously. Observing how these two have handled one of life's most significant issues has helped me to keep things in perspective regarding my own life. I am living in a place I would rather not be living. I stay where I am to be of assistance to my elderly parents. We are commanded to "honor thy father and thy mother"....it's what we do. I realize that I can take positive steps to make the best of my current situation, and to remember that I am not facing a life/death situation. It's all about patience and perspective. Life can change quickly. I forget to appreciate the "here and now" while longing for the future. I have realized that unlike one of my friends with end stage cancer....I do have a future and I need to make sure I don't have any regrets about the past. We will see what the next year brings and I work hard to remember to be thankful for the present.

My husband and I came perilously close to splitting up. I am glad we didn't! I am proud of both of us for working so hard on our relationship in our own ways even though I don't fully understand how we came through it. I am enormously relieved and fervently hope we won't find ourselves in a similar place again.

1) Realized that as a Jew I can have a personal relation- ship with God. I want one but am unsure how & also a little scared to learn how to do it. However, I have joined a Bible & Prayer group to help learn. 2) I have finally learned & have had to accept that my husband is unable to emotionally have a sexual relationship. I have been unhappy & frustrated about this most of our married life (33 yrs) but thought that years of counseling would help. I am devastated that I gave up those years of sexual satisfaction and will never have any in the future. My 2 'must have' criteria in the man I was to marry were 1) we had to have a good sex life & 2) he had to enjoy dancing. We shared #1 for about 18 months. I have humbled myself to him about my natural needs many times and I am very bitter & resentful that he won't work on what it takes to enrich both of our lives. I can't believe I will die having basically lived a life of celibacy. I might as well have been a nun.

Two significant experiences have happened in the past year. I retired from fundraising and development after 13 successful, growth-filled, amazing years. I also took a two week trip to Ireland with my husband and very dear friends in search of the roots of Esoteric Christianity. I am grateful to the school where I worked for the opportunities for tremendous growth, building relationships, overcoming challenges, breaking new ground, raising the bar, bringing professionalism to the office of development, and for challenging me to be so much better than I ever thought possible. I am relieved that I no longer have the fundraising responsibilities and financial goal to meet. Looking back I realize how much hard work fundraising is. Having said that, I'm inspired by my wonderful colleagues and friends, the volunteers who helped with events, and the school's student body. Ireland was and is the biggest blessing in the world. I loved the opportunity to explore the megalithic and Celtic past, to breathe in the beautiful, green and wet countryside, and to explore this magical place with friends I deeply love.

I decided not to serve a second year as synagogue president. It was a very difficult decision to make, but it was absolutely the right one for me. Every time I ask myself whether I wish I were still president, the answer is a resounding, "No!" I am so much more relaxed and happy at the synagogue now than I was when I was president.

My daughter began taking medication to treat her severe social anxiety. Her condition has improved remarkably. I am grateful, relieved, cautiously optimistic, hopeful, and concerned.

A service trip that I embarked on with my high school to New Orleans was a very significant experience to me. We first visited the city and explored the rich culture it had. We visited the Mardi Gras Museum, the French Quarter, along with the famous Bourbon Street. I found it necessary to explore the city and the impact that Katrina has had in order to understand the situation. The service was eye opening. When touring the city we soon realized that homes in the Lower 9th Ward were still not rebuilt and the ones that were rebuilt are now decaying because the use of poor construction materials. The citizens of the Lower 9th Ward are predominantly African American. In the white neighborhoods it looked as if there never was a hurricane. This is a blatant sign of institutional racism, because the Lower 9th Ward still needs a lot of work, while the white neighborhoods are perfectly fine. Volunteering in an elementary school outside of New Orleans,where many children come from broken homes and 98% of the children qualify for reduced or free lunch, was where I felt my perspective change drastically. I was so surprised that these children could still put a smile on their face after learning about their family situations and talking to them about other things they had on their minds. I soon realized that they put a smile on there face because school was a place where they could let their troubles slip away from their minds and become excited to learn and socialize with other children. I was determined to do the best I could to make the children's experience just a little better and impact them positively. I played with numerous children, helping them with homework, giving them piggyback rides, pushing them on the swings, and I also insisted on eating lunch with them. I could see that a few in particular had attachment problems, and I soon realized that I was only to volunteer there for two days, and for these children I was to temporarily fill an empty hole in their hearts and that would just be ripped out again when I leave. I was devastated when I had to leave them on the final day. One child I really connected with and he was particularly clingy and such a sweet kid. When it was time to leave I walked him to the bus, and I could tell he was very sad and he cried earlier in the day when he realized it was my last day volunteering.. Once we were at the bus I gave him a big hug and he left on the bus. Later, I went into the bathroom where we were staying at, so no one could see me cry. I will never forget the kids in that elementary school. I would like to think I had a impact on them. I hope I helped ease their troubles during the school day, but I'm sure the kids made a greater impact on me, than I did on them.

My dear father died, after suffering from dementia for 5 years. It was a relief that his suffering was over, and also an end to 5 years of guilt on my part, at the resentment I felt at having to visit when he didn't know who I was nor reacted one bit. It took some weeks before I got the picture out of my head of how he looked the last time I saw him alive, but now I remember him as he was. I miss him, he was my inspiration, my hero and my best friend.

I have gotten back in touch with a good friend who has been like a mentor for me lately. He has been an inspiring and motivating influence on me, pushing me to work on bettering my position not only for myself but also for my children. I am very grateful that we have had a chance to reconnect and that I now have an accountability partner to keep me focused on my goals.

I retired in August and there was a reception for me today, August 13. I am relieved and anxious as I. Eg in to put shape to my future. I am grateful to all who have sent well wishes and who stepped forward to greet me today and bid me well. I'm not as yet inspired with a particular goal in mind, but that is ok. I pray I have time to do so.

I was fired (wrongfully in my opinion), resulting in a court battle and eventual settlement. I am still quite bitter and resentful and my anxiety and depression has worsened, partly as a result. I'm also plagued with questions about my ability to successfully perform in my next role, as my confidence took a bit hit. I always thought I was a good employee and I have always gotten along well with my coworkers and supervisors and that boss changed all that. I hope in a year, I'll have had some time being happy and successful in a new role and this will finally be behind me.

This year I graduated nursing school. I am both grateful and relieved. Since I was around 11 I suffered from depression. There were periods during nursing school where I was in the depths of a deep depression and I didn't know if I would make it. I promised myself that I would pass nursing school not just for myself, but to ultimately serve others. I strive to be a great nurse, to care for the people no one cares for. I'm doing a lot better now and I am optimistic for the future. I grew up in a modern orthodox Jewish community. There is some stigma about mental illness and a fear to talk about it. This stigma exists in the world as a whole but sometimes depression/mental illness is viewed as some type of moral failure in my community. I'm grateful that I was able to get help but there are few people that know about my depression and I feel isolated from the community I grew up in. I am glad of the many values that my community instilled in me, but I think more needs to be done to address mental illness and spread awareness.

I spend a lot of time volunteering with a group I believed in. I invested a lot of myself and my resources and it turned out that the leader was incapable of acutially helping the cause. She was more concerned on maintaining her power trip then to take the wealth of knowlege I had to offer. She was treating me like an employee rather then a volunteer. I resigned losing a lot of trust in others. I am giving my time to another group that has treated me so well for a long time and I cant help but be scared that someone else will take advantage of my generosity. This situation has particially ruined me. I am resentful. Maybe she should apoligize to me this holiday like another person did.

Receiving my first full-time job offer (& taking it) would be the obvious choice, and it is indeed a big one so I won't overlook it. Yet I'm tempted to think beyond that, to consider other moments in the past year that are also significantly, either self-evidently, or in that more subtle but no less important way, like reading this morning's paper and being reminded of the importance of gratitude as I read stories of cancer patients' final days. THAT, too, is significant. Deaths always have been and will be significant because of the gravity with which it puts life in perspective, and my mind is gravitating towards trying to think of others from the past year. I also realize that significance need not only come from these moments of loss. In fact, they can come from the opposite, like a sports team of mine finally achieving the ultimate success (the irony of writing that is that I'm currently waiting for the rain delay to conclude such that another one of my favorite sports figures can pursue his ultimate success again). My grandma's move to her new apartment is another notable, bittersweet moment from the past year that has positively impacted the complexion of our relationship and profoundly impacted her daily life. In revisiting the job, though, this jumped out at me first as my most significant moment of the past year. Accepting the position embodied a transition from the creative world of art-making to the more business-y world of consulting, no matter how much overlap I'd will my role to embody. It also meant I'd be self-sustaining in the most expensive city in the country, even if I didn't have much leftover. And it mean that I'd begin down the road of professionalism, self-improvement, and an informed corporate skepticism. I'm still early on in this process and tend to think about what still is yet to be, but for now, I can finally look back with some comfort that a vocational choice became one of the most significant moments of my past year.

This year, I learned what it meant to have feelings for another person. And not the unrequited, selfish kind, but the genuine wanting him to be incredible and do incredible things kind. I met a boy at camp, let him pursue me, and we took things slow. It took him four nights of hanging out and talking for him to finally kiss me behind my cabin. We talked about everything, from camp flings to what it means to love someone. It was truly a magical experience, and he did everything right. We slept together for the first time at my house and my mother loved him. We decided to continue the relationship after camp, which worked for only so long. He went to college and got too busy for a long distance relationship. And I understood. I learned what it means to understand soneone else's situation and not take it personally. To really care enough to put yourself in someone else's shoes and understand. Truly understand. and not be offended. And give him the space to become who he's supposed to be. And hope that he'll come back stronger. And if not, know that I am where I am supposed to be. I was put here and this happened for a reason, one which I do not yet know. We are put exactly where we are supposed to be when we are supposed to be there. I may have been teary, but I am stronger because I have experienced this two way street of a strong relationship between two people who just click. Camp is magic, and our relationship was and is magic. I am grateful for the experience, no matter how short it was. I am grateful to him for holding me the way he did and for kissing my hands. For pushing my hair out of my eyes so that he could look into them. For crying when I said that I had to go but didn't want to leave him. For being honest about his feelings, what he needed, and respecting what I needed when I needed it. I am inspired by my emotions, by the feelings I can experience with others. By camp, which is a community that brings together people who want to make a difference in this world. By the connections we can make if we just let them run their course. By how much I want to work with others to form bonds like this, to allow others to experience what I did in a magical place. I am inspired by how much we can learn about ourselves when we tap into our emotions and let ourselves cry. And how therapeutic a hug from a best friend and a good cry can be. I have also learned from this how important it is to be able to stand on your own. No one else validates you, you must do it yourself. And most things that others do are not to hurt you, you mustn't take it so personally. By loving yourself and knowing that you can grow however you wish, you allow others to love you and allow yourself to love others and be happy for their experiences instead of jealous. Accepting that I am jealous and working to overcome that is a growth opportunity that I am embracing.

The deaths of both parents in the last 12 months has brought about a complicated mix of feelings. Each died in what I can only think of as the best way under their circumstances. They were both way too young: Mom 75, Dad 77. But, in the former case there was a great coming together of friends and family and careful planning. In the latter, we're still reeling from the suddenness (only a week old), but I personally would never want to live long under the diminishing cognitive capacity my dad was experiencing.

A day at Iguazu falls on the Argentina/Brazil border. The awesome majestic power of nature on display was moving in its beauty. It was also a day shared with the Singers, The Gersts, Barbara Levinson, and most importantly my darling wife which made it a great day as a group. The feeling was inspiring and one of awe at the beauty of the site, along with a warm feeling of community & connection with my wife and the friends who made up our party.

My aunt Judy got even sicker than she had been, and died; shortly afterward my grandparents became super sick, and my grandmother ended up in the hospital. I had just moved to California, all the way across the country, and ended up flying back and forth twice to be with my family. It was totally exhausting and overwhelming -- and it was absolutely the right decision. I'm so glad I could be there with my aunt as she was about to die, and with the rest of my family as they prepared to lose her... and the hours I spent by my grandmother's bedside were some of the sweetest ones we've ever had together.

This actually happened yesterday. Because both my sister and I were home, we had several talks as a family. The big one yesterday focused on my father's health, and what he COULD be doing to improve his life, and the life he shares with mom. His various ailments combined with a lifelong sleep disorder have resulted in him often being groggy, confused, checked out... He falls asleep in chairs, on couches, while friends and family are around. As we were talking to him about what he could do to improve his sleep and make him less isolated, it became clear that he might not actually want to take those steps. Finally, he said to me--without any anger or sadness--"I'm tired. I just want to sit and watch tv and doze." He didn't mean this as in-the-moment. Rather, decades of discomfort and the traumatic surgery last November have aged him, and he's ready to be aged, to sit quietly, to let himself slow down. I looked at my parents and realized--they are old. They don't want the new technology. They're happy to have sparse though sufficient food at home, instead of the delightful array of yummy things they used to have around. They're content to be surrounded by old books and piles of magazines. They're ready to be slowing down. They are not my contemporaries. They're in twilight. Later, my sister and I looked at each other and asked, well, what do we do? We agreed--we'd visit more often. We'd make the most of the time left. We'd make sure they get to be with their grandkids as much as possible, because those little people are the most vibrant part of my parents' lives. My mom explained that when we were young, it was vitally important for them to be healthy and vibrant. They don't have to be now; their job is, essentially, done. I am not old. I'm 42. I must thrive for the sake of my work and my children. I must engage with life fully, with my whole self. I don't know what I'll think when I'm old, but many old folks I know express the same willingness to wane, to fade peacefully. I'm neither resentful or afraid. I cry while writing this because I'm proud to be part of this unique and beautiful family. My parents created us, me and my sister, and the four of us share a transcendental, mystical bond. We've done well by each other and will continue to do so as long as my parents are with us; we will even after they are gone. I'm ready to let them fade as they choose to. I am struck with the profound finitude that's evident now. This is why we have families.

Letting go of a toxic friendship in my life. She was one of my best friends all through college, and after graduating I realized how toxic our friendship had been. I had to eventually just let her go. We still talk here and there, but it's never like how it used to be. She abused our relationship to the point that it was unbearable for me. It saddens me to have let go a friendship, but I'm relieved not to deal with her anymore.

I had to deal with frightening money concerns with my former husband. It was stressful, difficult, frightening, re-traumatizing. I found courage to stand my ground and be flexible on the parts that I could. I was able to stay grounded in the interactions and not bite back when they felt unbearably hurtful things. I am grateful that I got through this with a solution I can live with. I am grateful for the support I had. I am relieved that it is over except for a short letter to write.

This year I have experienced the full-spectrum of work environments. I've had experience in different fields, but never with such intensity and diversity as I have in London. There are management consultants, white walls of corporate offices, in-house designers, contracted developers - I've seen it all. Obviously, I still have so much to learn, but I'm quickly learning what I do and do not like. I do not like being idle and enjoy the pace at which I'm working these days. With that said, it's difficult for me to be a part of such a manufactured ecosystem. It feels so unnatural in some ways. Ultimately, I'm achieving what I need to achieve, which is an accelerated learning experience and a variety of environments, from small agencies to large corporate businesses. I'm grateful for these incredible experiences and I'm relieved that I can move forward in the world confident that I'll be compensated for my skills. I'm inspired that I've managed to communicate effectively with such a different types of people. I feel communication has always been a strongpoint and it's nice to see it in the wild. I'm slightly resentful that all of this has arguably come at the expense of my health and relationships. With that said, I'm fairly healthy and happy, so I really can't complain too much. I've learned a lot this year, but I would like to continue to be skeptical of what's 'normal' in the eternal quest to create my own personal 'normal', which hopefully is as amazing as I imagine it to be.

1st paper published in current research. grateful, relieved.

My brother revealed he was sexually abused by a priest. It was the tipping point in the slow devolution of my family from one of outward perfection to something more frail, relatable, and human. I am resentful for how this was handled because it was unfairly framed as my mother's fault. I'm relieved in that we aren't a perfect family anymore. I'm not inspired.

I went to BCI this year. It really affected my ability to heal and to hear that everyone is not okay. It also gave me a great community to open up with and share my fears. I've learned from Andrew at BCI that "the work is the work" and it's okay if I never get to where I want to be. The joy is in the journey. I traveled after BCI with my Israeli roommate, Kate. It was great to travel with someone who is so positive. She really helped me see that we are with the people we think we deserve and that has really helped me look at whether my relationships with folks is honoring who I am. I'm looking forward to the future.

This past year I ended my relationship with a toxic person. It was a long time coming and it was not a good situation for me to be in at all. I don't really want to describe it but it was not pretty. It has been a difficult journey to let go and find peace (though I think I'm 80% there). Surprisingly the last 20 percent has a lot to do with forgiving myself for the way I handled everything -- start to finish. Then there is also the feelings of betrayal and the despair that there is something fundamentally wrong with me that I got so deep in this situation at all. Even answering this question this way, now, it's like "ugh come on get over it" but that attitude creates more problems. I felt a lot of pain with this situation and my pain is my pain and it is mine to feel it in the moments when I need to. But post-GM Lesley also knows that she is happy, her life is good, and that situation was not a good thing. Looking forward I do want to find someone I feel electrified about. And I will be more aware of signs that someone is not trustworthy even if I want them to be/have feelings for them. Also, yes, maybe there is something wrong with me, and that's ok too. I am a human being who is growing each and every day. Ultimately I'm happy with the end result -- a life without that cloud of stress just hovering over me. I won't trust people in the same way. I touched a lot of different, deeper, emotions evoked by this person was and I think I have a lot more learning to do about standing up for myself and finding myself worthy.

Two major events have occurred to me in the past year. My brother, Johnny, succumbed to brain cancer after nearly 10 months of fighting for his life. It was a year ago in September that I flew to Houston to say my last goodbye. He died the morning before Thanksgiving. I miss him every day. Then, in August of this year, I left my job of 15 years to start anew some place else. I am now employed at a health clinic on the edge of a high crime area - an area I have spent my entire life avoiding because of it's dangerous reputation. I work on the outskirts so crime is lower than in other areas but there is still a sense of "awareness" when I cross over the bridge into the "darker" side of town. I wonder how I'll feel about it a year from now when the drive is old hat to me? Anyway, I am loving working in such a culturally-diverse place. As a white woman, I am often the minority in my daily settings and it is giving me a small bit of insight into how it must feel to others who have encountered the same thing. I feel this experience is opening my heart to people in ways that have never been opened before. It has definitely been a God thing that I came to work here and I look forward to going to work now more than ever before. So there you go. I lost so much but I have also gained so much.

First time writing something that was published. It was very difficult and I came up against big resistance and trauma from the past. I became sad and mean. Finally, right at the deadline, I asked for an extension and hired a writer. She was great. The final piece is very good and i feel very good about others learning from it. I do wonder if I have what it takes to work through this.

Moved house. I'm grateful, and yet still resentful. So far it feels more like drudgery (moving, unpacking, the rat) than inspirational.

I moved to Phoenix to serve as an assistant Messianic Rabbi. It has affected me in some profound ways. I'm sure it will continue to have a dramatic impact on my life. It has been a soliton experience. I am profoundly grateful to G-d who has led me back to who He has created me to be. I am so excited to tell other Jews that they have been called to be sons and daughters and to find their identity in Messiah Yeshua.

Returned to a previous workplace. The move was a good on as it allowed me to continue the work I enjoy & opens the door for growth & expansion within my department & organizationally. I'm happy, relieved & optimistic

My mom died this year. It will be 5 months on Tuesday. Grateful? Relieved? Resentful? Inspired? In a given moment I have felt any one of these sentiments. Nothing in my life has affected me as much as my mom's death. I think I will forever see my life as a "before mom died" and "after". How has it affected (and continues to affect) me? Well that would take a novel. But using these prompts- Grateful - I am so grateful for the time I had with my mom. The many incredible years. Especially the past year before she died. I am grateful for her love, guidance, wisdom, teachings, friendship, trust, respect. I am grateful for the community of friends and family and colleagues who have held me up and provided the support so I can cope healthfully. Relieved - Her last few days in April were agonizing, gruesome, painful beyond measure in physical and emotional ways. I felt relief after her last hours that she was hopefully no longer in pain. Resentful - Sure, I feel resentment at times that I don't have my mom in the flesh. I feel resentful at weddings. Inspired- I am so inspired by my mom and how she lived her life and how she touched others. Her selflessness. I am inspired by my Dad and his strength and our family's resilience. I am inspired by so many others who bear such hardships- far worse than my own- and keep on getting out of bed each day.

I got to change my job position over the summer while still working for the same organization. I am so grateful to my supervisors for giving me the break so I could do what I love; teaching drama and music to kids. I was invigorated, refreshed and inspired. It really help lift my spirits while being outside. It was such a great summer!

In looking back, I realize that the experience I first consider significant are the most 'negative' experiences. Deaths, injustice, disaster, family issues. There have been a number of what I'd normally look at as small miracles; breakthroughs, social responses to tragedy, political wins. Instead of celebrating them, I have been perpetually angry that there are not more of them. They are not small, and they are not miracles, so it is time I put them in the significant category, too. So rather than describe what has happened in detail, it is more important to acknowledge more than one of those what I could have dismissed as small miracles: New political parties being elected in Spain, Germany's welcome to refugees, Malalia, my brother's resurrection, time abroad. I am relieved and grateful and eager to note and support more positive change and hope.

I learned I had a genetic disease. Not a fatal one, necessarily but still one that has an impact on my health and how I live the rest of my life. I am grateful that I discovered this at a young age so that I can always be one step ahead of it. I owe my life to my parents and this is certainly not the worst disease that I could have. However, I am a little resentful that my parents seemed so uninformed about the whole thing, especially since my mother's father died at a young age due to complications from the very same disease.

In this last year, I got engaged and changed jobs and really felt my life moving, rather than staying stagnant like it has been for a few years. I can feel my life propelling forward and it is both scary, stressful and exhilarating and filled with possibilities that I never imagined. I learned to begin to lean into my busy-ness and my blessings rather than being overwhelmed or resentful of it. Or scared of it. And, in feeling really happy with these choices and feeling myself growing every single day.

My mother was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney failure. It made me sad and scared. I am inspired by her ability to adapt and change her habits so that she can continue to be with us without the pain and agony of dialysis. I am resentful of doctor's that may have ignored the issue for too long letting get this far. I am relieved that her prognosis is good for at least a few years and that she is able to control it with her diet and exercise. I am grateful to still have my mom with me.

Steve died. I was saddened though we all expected it this year as cancer was winning now. But still when he actually passed it was a great experience of loss and how much he will be missed by many many people especially his son and daughter. I learned how to die with grace, peace and equanimity. He set an amazing example.

I began working as a historical interpreter at a Civil War era fort. My first real job in history, and I loved it. Instead of making a New Year's resolution for 2015, I chose a word to live by. That word was gratitude. And the year measured up to that word in a big way. I am so grateful for the opportunities I've had this year, and I hope to pass that good fortune on to someone else.

It was a year of firsts for me with ASFB. I made it through my first Nutcracker, my first recital, and my first summer. My husband unexpectedly quit his job in February and started a new career path. I was so scared when he did that, so uncertain that we weren't heading for disaster. But the gamble paid off. Watching him blossom in a new field, watching him go from faux optimism to cautious true optimism, to the joy of success was transformative for me. It taught me that I need to trust his instincts sometimes, even if they conflict with my own. Especially when things primarily concern him. As I embark on this second year with ASFB I feel more competent, and although there are unknowns I feel more equipped to handle them. The summer was a tough time. We didn't yet have the financial stability of his promotion, and I wasn't bringing in as much. That, combined with the pressures from the kids, really put a strain on both of us and on our relationship. We've managed to heal from that, significantly, but it's still there in the back of my mind. A situation to prevent if possible. But I feel I've seen a lot of growth in him. I hope it's mirrored in myself. I have a sense of happiness and hope that I know I didn't have a year ago. I can't quite say why. I think maybe it's just the relief of concrete expectations. Less ifs. More concrete ideas about what's possible.

Proposal to future spouse and beginning of nuptial preparations. I feel relieved, trepidatious, happy, sad and resigned.

Several come to mind. Bandera 100k, Miwok 100k, Bryce 100. Bryce was my first 100 miler. All were big physical and mental challenges. I learned that my mental fortitude is unshakable. I learned that I can do anything that I can wrap my head around. I learned that I can train hard and be dedicated without relying on others. I learned that I am strong at the end regardless of the length or difficulty of the race. I am less fearful of big challenges now. I dream bigger. My definition of 'hard' has changed. I am inspired to go forward and accomplish some of my dream goals. Strangely, I am now less judgmental of others.

I went to the emergency room four times with sepsis. I am now grateful and relieved, but when it occurred I was afraid that I was not going to get better. I was never resentful. I do believe that the experience has helped my focus on the daily appreciation of the gift of life and health, for me and my family.

No really significant thing happened, I continued to be successful at work, but also realize that work time is winding down and I am currently on a project of purging, don't want someone to have to clean up after I'm gone, so you can say I've been inspired this year.

My wife and I ended our relationship after 11 years together and the birth of two daughters. Although this separation has been full of emotion and fear and feelings of loss, it is not a loss as in a deficit. More like the mourning of a sacred time together and learning about life together that for both of us has come to a close. It feels right for us and I am grateful that we are having similar feelings/reacitons to the spit. I am grateful to have had the courage to end our relationship before my spouse and I began to lose our friendship (it was headed in that direction) and that we still love and respect one another. Also very crucial for our children to see that. Seems like it would be horrible for our girls if we didn't love one another. I am really relived that is that it been so positive. My former partner has been so mature and insightful through this whole thing. We each have our vulnerable and tearful moments but for the most part it has been 6 weeks of being better to one another than we have been in years. I feel as if we gained our friendship back instead of lost our marriage. The truth is that part was lost already- the part that counts.

The most significant change for me in the past year has been a final breakup with the man I was dating on and off for 13 years. It has been extremely painful on so many levels. I believed so many lies and did not want to see him for whom he truly was. I stood by his side, supported him emotionally and at times financially and loved him deeply. He made promises that were never carried through. My friends and family had warned me that he was sucking the life out of me, but somehow he had me fooled. There are things that I miss about him but what I really miss is having someone there (though I realize that he wasn't in so many ways). The incredible sadness I feel isn't for him but for the lose of what I believed we had. I continue each day to fill my life with other things that make me happy, and hope that one day soon I can look back and just feel free from him and the pain.

I traveled for work, leaving my disabled husband for the first time in ten years. It went well. I am grateful.

I just finally got divorced. It was such an awful process, despite six years of separation, I am very relieved it's over. Well . . . over as long as no one objects to the judgment that was handed down. Since my lawyer has been on vacation, I'm not 100% sure this is really it. But we live in hope ;-)

I successfully urged my synagogue to sing the prayer for the state of Israel which they now do from time to time

Two months ago, I broke up with my boyfriend of 3 and a half years. I think I knew deep down for a while that he wasn't right for me but stayed with him out of comfort/convenience/fear. It took a lot of courage to finally end things, but at the same time it got to the point that I was so unhappy, it was painful to stay with him. He's a great guy and I hope we can be friends someday but for now, I know we need to go our separate ways. It's my first time being single since college and in the real world so there are definitely some adjustments.. but I'm realizing, this is the first time in a long time that I'm single and not a mess. The last few break ups I went through/times I was single, I was distraught and had no idea what I was doing and made bad choices. For the first time in a long time, I am single and okay with it. I'm not desperately seeking a mate but am open to meeting new people and just being me. Another experience, which I am just beginning, is moving to a new apartment in a new town with new roommates. This was also a scary, big change for me, but one I felt in my gut would be a good change. Sometimes the things you're most afraid of are the most worthwhile. I was worrying that if I stayed in the same apartment with the same people, I wouldn't give myself any room to grow and I wasn't really heading in the direction I wanted. I am only a couple weeks into this new living situation, but so far things are going well and I've already met new people and found friends in my roommates.

I would say a significant experience this year was when I was hired in a small school district in the Mts. I was over joyed to tears knowing I was leaving my old school district. I didn't think I was going to be able to continue to work at the intense pace and with the aggressive people I was working with. With this job change my personal life has been put to the test. I thought my husband and I were on the same page but we were not and although I am very happy he is miserable and very difficult to live with.

I had a son. It's been amazing. I did not know what to expect, but I certainly did not expect it to be as wonderful as it has been. He is a wonderful, sweet, patient, loving little boy. Having him in my life brings me immeasurable happiness.

Charlie Graham was born... My first child and a son... It was not always clear to me how to best understand what was happening to me... Or how best to support this event as it unfolded in my life... Now he is almost 9 months... Wow... Such a blessing.... So inspired... To be the best version of myself... Truly inspired...

I had a breakdown and was diagnosed with bipolar ii. I also have ADHD and some minor borderline traits. I was angry and did not want to be I'll or have a condition. I was also overwhelmed with relief to understand what was going on,and I spent some time really focussed on my recovery. Then I went back to a more normal life where I make some bad choices and mistakes too, but thank God I am well enough to live my life. I am also grateful in a strange way for the things bipolar has taught me. Having time out of life and work has enabled me to begin mindfulness and have therapy and do art. This is a wonderful feeling. I have also learnt how to create a support structure, which is something which will stand me in good stead for the rest of my life. Overall the year has contained a lot of pain but a lot of light, a lot of care, development,and support. If I may sayso,I even inspire myself a little bit.

I retired from work last October. I was concerned about how I'd cope but overall the transition went well. I had a magnificent send off from work and while I miss the people and social interactions a bit, I'm not missing work as much as I expected to. I have not replaced work with that much but I enjoy not having to get up early and having relaxed breakfasts. I plan to work on C2C database on our return from South America. I am grateful we have the financial situation to ambles me to retire. Also my health to ambles myself to enjoy time in retirement on holidays such as the current one.

This year my mom moved to my city - the first time we have lived this close since I left home after college. My mom and I have had a bumpy relationship over the years. Generally speaking we have not been close. Since she has moved here, she has (a) needed medical attention, (b) needed help with walking her dog and caring for her pets, (c) followed her own intuition rather than my advice on where to live. She has also spent a great deal of time with her grandkids. I am able to come to doctor appointments with her. I feel more compassionate towards her and more understanding and willing to defend her than I have in the past. I am grateful and relieved that she is nearby where I can be of help to her, somewhat resentful of needing to care for her pets in addition to my children. And also inspired, because I know that balancing all of these feelings and responsibilities is directly my spiritual path right now, and the opportunity to figure this out - how to "be" towards my mother - while she is with me, is a great gift that I have been given, however challenging I find this gift.

I lost my job (again) about a month ago. It wasn't even a job that I liked or was particularly good at, and my first response was actually relief. I had been waiting for the shoe to drop for most of the year I was employed there. However, now that it has occurred, I am feeling lost. I do not really know what I want to do -- or if I am willing to listen to my heart, which says: become a music therapist, to really follow the steps that would get me there. I look at job descriptions for what I used to do, and companies I could potentially work for in that type of job, and I am very disinterested. I feel scared and inadequate to choose what I really want -- but "if not now, when?"

My son returned home. I don't know why it seems impossible for us to be healthy individuals together but there we are. My house is destroyed again and I have no interest in fixing that. All I seem to want to do is hide, sleep and avoid. I am resentful and confused. I am resentful about not setting boundaries for the people in my life and I am confused about how to set boundaries....and how to respect boundaries. I feel guilty that I'm not a better mother to him, that I failed in creating a welcoming home for him and that I'm not able to create one for myself.

Well, I guess as of August 26, my divorce is finalized. It was a long drawn out ordeal, almost 2 years. I guess that would count as significant. Don't exactly know how I feel about it, kinda mixed emotions. Relieved that it is finally over and I'm not in limbo. I don't feel like I won even though he could have taken a lot more. Like I've said before, you think you are saving for the future, not to payoff your spouse who you trusted and supported for , now 12 years, just to get rid of him. Hind sight is 20/20, should have never married him. He absolutely did nothing for me to enhance my existence.. . Well maybe teach me some hard lessons. People make inept decisions when in love. I don't want to be in a relationship for a while. I am having a difficult time getting the message across to my friend Tim. I need down time and I need my space. I want to interact with different people and circumstances without worrying about including someone all the time. I want to just be me for now. I love my friends but I need to get my life in order to see where my next step will lead.

I moved to Cincinnati to start a PhD program! This only happened about a month ago, but the change was a long time in the making, with a lot of anxiety and worry and self-doubt along the way. I'm still settling in, so I think it will be a few months before I know for certain how it will affect me, but so far, I'm really thrilled to have made this change. It's not always easy. Having been out of school for so long, I often feel stressed, insecure, nervous, and overwhelmed. I'm worried about the social elements, and I'm concerned about the ways the logistical distance between me and my husband will impact our relationship. In just the last few weeks though, I've noticed a lot more confidence in myself, too, a kind of bravery and a willingness to work through the difficult times. In general, I feel happy to have made this decision, and I think the benefits will be worth the difficulties.

Really? Just one?! A dear, old friend passed away suddenly at the age of 47. I'm still working out and working through what I feel and it is challenging - I am resisting thinking the thoughts. However, it is making me think about my own mortality and that of those around me which is probably useful, and helping me to focus my thoughts a little more on what I want the rest of my life to be. I'm about to turn 40 so that may have happened anyway...

Wow. I totally skipped out on 2014. I suppose it's because I was suffering from bad breakup syndrome, and honestly - I still think about it, and Amar, all the time. Only time will tell if it's really for the best, but if you ask me, I still wonder if he's the love of my life and I'm not his. Anyways - significant experiences: Well, this is Day 3 in LONDON. Girlfriend, you DID it. You got were promoted in August 2014, traveled a ton with TOMS (even to Haiti twice!), applied to grad school and got accepted into your dream program at LSE. YOU GO. So far, so good. You're feeling grateful. Very grateful, inspired and eager to continue a path of learning.

My mom died along a 5 months ago. It has been the hardest thing I have ever gone through. It is way harder than becoming a parent. I think about her everyday and miss her every time I think about her. There were times in our life together that i thought it would be easier if she died, how foolish that was. I would give anything to be able to pick up the phone and call her. I regret not sharing all the small details of my and my children's lives with her when she was her. I could have been a much better daughter and partner in our relationship. I know she knows I loved her but I wish I would have showed it to her more.

I started living with my partner full time, after being in a transatlantic relationship for 5 years. It's been really great and I'm deeply grateful.

In 2015, I was able to change jobs from the nonprofit sector to the private one, though maintaining the same kind of work. I feel grateful that my skills transfer; relieved at being away from the horrible dysfunction and insecurity; and still stuck but less so than before. I had been trying forever to see my way out of that world, and it just took taking a leap of faith. Now, though the work is better, I am in a safer place to look out and ask myself what it is that I would really rather be doing. Combined with being divorced at the beginning of August, this year has freed me from so many of my old constructions of self. I am able to ask who I am and what I want. It's like standing on a steep path and watching the handrails fall away, knowing you're going to keep walking - it's freedom and fear all mixed together.

I have moved in with Lee to a little cute flat in Bristol. We have a kitten called Zuko and have just bought a car. I feel happy. I never imagined a year into our relationship we would be so together and have our little family and be planning things for the future. I am grateful because he is the best guy I could wish for and a calming influence on my crazy mind.

Starting to see Pat, it has helped me to grow. Has given me someone to talk to about my concerns and experiences in my life. I am all of the above grateful I was able to make it work so my insurance pays for it, relieved she is so insitful and inspired since she makes me think things over and guides me to follow my better path .GRATEFUL

Was sent to a Literacy 6th grade class as a Substitute teacher. First year of subbing without any training or warning that this was a behaviorally challenged class. Over a third of the students needed to be graded on three levels every hour on the hour. The kids didn't respond to any request for quiet, civility, or respect. I called for the principal who came in on her high heels, pencil skirt, tight cashmere sweater, and bed head look. An older woman. She threatened them. After she left they said, "We don't listen to her." The teacher's pet told me her regular teacher wants to quit because the class is so bad. At lunchtime I was sent home with six unsatisfactory marks on my character record and banned from that "academy" forever more. I am haunted by this because I'm so conscientious and as a student leader was proudly voted by other asbp's to be the first student representative on this particular board of education when younger. I am still highly reactive to this situation. It happened on my parent's February anniversary. It still makes me not want to teach anymore. It disgusts me how horrific the school situation is for kids nowadays. I got a $300+ illegal left turn ticket one street over in August when I was still fuming about the unfair situation.

I moved to River Rouge this year. Scary. I've been in the same position at Robichaud for 10 years and although there are definitely struggles there - I knew the ropes and the expectations. Moving to Rouge seems to be a good move so far. Hard to say what the future holds but with a district that is growing - programs that are building and hopes of one day becoming a full time drama teacher I'm taking the plunge... Who am I kidding - it's going on the 2nd week of school - it's way too late to go back :)

I went back to my OG yoga studio, for my first class back. I took the class that brought me thru my limber 20's. This time I was 36, two babies wiser and the weight of the world literally and figuratively on my shoulders. I had not been back to a place I visited often as second home in almost 4 years... Life was crowded. In my body and mind. This year I began my practice of yoga, again. I got back on my mat and brought my cousin with me. Her desire to commit to this practice nourished my desire to continue on in a new practice. Her ability to learn with a beginners mind inspired me to begin again. I am grateful. As a result of my practice I have discovered myself again and more so am discovering who I am today, and who I can bring into tomorrow. My mind and body are being primed to face the new challenging poses on and off the mat that have appeared. Bonus, major bonus, My husband felt my commitment and at 44 became a yogi. I am inspired by all of it individually and collectively. This year I experienced that the magic that comes thru doing something you love - is Real and Contagious.

I had a scare with breast cancer again....after 23 years of being cancer free. I thought I was going to slow down, and in some respects I have. I say no more often, but still take on a lot. However, I spend more time with loved ones and even though that is time consuming, it is a beautiful thing. I am not resentful. I have only gratitude.

At this time last year, M and I had just met with a fertility specialist for the first time after a year of knowing things weren't working right. This past year I underwent IVF treatment and became pregnant. It's been a really emotional experience - both good and bad. Overall, I'm so grateful that it's worked, that M and I are fortunate to have amazing health insurance, and live in a time and place when we have access to this technology. But it's also been stressful and at times physically challenging. Throughout my early pregnancy I've dealt with a lot of stress with medical scares, although, thank God, everything has turned out fine so far. But I already love this baby so much and I just hope every day that he continues to grow and be healthy and that I have a safe delivery and can meet this little guy. I am filled with wonder and happiness every time I feel him move, and especially at this time of year, I am so excited to share our holiday traditions and foods and prayers with him in years to come. This upcoming year is going to be quite the ride, but I'm really excited and grateful that I'm going to be on it, and have M with me every step of the way. M has been so patient and supportive.

My nephew was born right on the day I said he would: May 13th! Man, do I love that little bundle of joy! Of course, now everybody says I should be next but I don't care. Whatever, dude. My little man is here, is healthy and that's all that matters to me.

One of my oldest friendships suffered a big loss. Kimberly and Bill lived the worst nightmare we both share: malignant recurrence. Kimberly specifically wanted me to have full access to their experience in case Alexandra and I ever have to deal with it; she felt it would ease the shock. Kimberly died less than a year after her recurrence. I'm very grateful for Kimberly's giving, empathic ways, even while she was slipping away much too soon. Bill continues to set an incredible example as well. Great losses are important opportunities for gratitude for what remains.

I bought a house! I'm so excited to have a place that's mine to live in, decorate and enjoy. It's a small blue cape but it feels so luxurious after my old cramped apartments. I'm also just proud of myself for saving the money and finding such a lovely home. I am so grateful for this house and so happy with how quickly it turned into a home. Chris and I had it home like in days!!! And it's gotten better and better since. Just did the mancave and the sunporch. I'm so lucky

I went to Italy with my daughter and my partner. It is the land of my fathers parents. My Nona died when I was six but I have memories of the hugs and smells and tastes that filled the house she lived in. It Is a most amazing country. I feel so grateful and happy that I could share it with people I love. My daughter got to visit the land of her ancestors and see an ancient culture, filled with wonder. I worked hard for so much of my life. I am proud of myself for being able to reach this goal.

Big question! My husband left me. Later he admitted to an affair lasting 2 and a half years. This has devastated me. Although we are now together and trying to put it behind us, the pain has not diminished. I feel incredibly sad that this has happened. I also feel betrayed, scared, resentful and often overwhelmed by it all. I have had many experiences in my life but this is the biggest thing that has ever happened to me. I still don't know what the future holds but I hope that we manage to salvage a new marriage out of the wreckage. I hope.

I divorced my husband this year, which one might think would be THE defining moment of the year, but it really isn't. I would say that the trip to Europe chaperoning students was more defining and probably gave me the power and personal reflection necessary to divorce him. While I was on the trip, I remembered what I loved about life and it wasn't him. I am grateful for the loyal and loving friend who chose me to help chaperone the trip and who pushed me to accept even when I felt afraid because of my husband's behavior. I am relieved that I finally divorced him because I no longer have anyone around me pushing me to dislike myself. I've been inspired to improve my own life daily since the events of this summer transpired.

Wow as I sit here and reflect on this past year, so many significant experiences come to mind. A lot has happened! I graduated from college, ended a longterm relationship, got my first job, lived on a cruise ship, lived at the Taj Mahal, traveled out of the country for the first time and fell in love. I am grateful for all of these experiences, all of them, the good, bad and ugly. They have shaped me into the person I am today and continue to influence my life decisions. If I had to pick one to reflect on, I would probably have to pick my contract on the Grand Celebration Ship. Shortly after graduation from college I applied to be a dancer on a cruise ship, within a week of applying I was on a plane down to Florida to join the ship. This experience has truly changed my life. I learned how to live away from home with no internet, cell phone, or TV. I had to learn how to be bad at something and work my ass off to be the best at that exact thing. I went from the girl in the back line to the girl front and center by the end of my contract. I learned what I loved. I made friends, actually I didn't just make friends, I made a family. I am grateful for what I have learned. I am relieved that I was able to handle it. Above all I was inspired to be able to do anything I want. I was inspired to follow my heart and take a chance. I was inspired to view life from a different point of view. That experience was the highlight of my year even though many life changing events occurred in my life this year.

Susan B. and I connected via Death Cafe, both of us being there at the same time. I am grateful, inspired, and relieved. Grateful and relieved having found a person who listens, really listens, asks probing questions, listens to the answers, writes clever, enticing emails using words that I must look up, emails that cause me to grow in my thinking.

I was offered 2 jobs, I turned them down. Why The Massachusetts job, it was what I though i wanted. I bottles it as i listen to my Bosses advice that they may not be able to let my research grow. Also, it is cols in Mass. The NZ job, it was all teaching, it was the other side of the world, it rains there (like it does in my home country, where I don't live anymore). I am a full, I chose the third choice to stay in a job which has been, good but, the same. I need challenge.

god, i hate that i'm even referencing fucking coachella in my very first answer. i feel like a goddamn cliche. but, honesty to a fault, right? coachella was my significant experience. i felt what it was like, for the first time in my life, to be comfortable and at home and totally, irrevocably present in my own skin. no one was watching me, but everyone was watching me. i wasn't watching anyone, but i was watching everyone. i could travel from place to place and i could sit in the quiet grass and i could adjust my underwear and i could be by myself and no one would have asked me twice. it was the most liberating and cathartic experience i have had in a very, very long time. i felt more myself in a foreign, new place than i ever thought possible. i guess it was inspiring, in a way, but it was also a relief. like: oh, i'm home. [sigh of relief]. but it was also really frustrating, you know? because it felt like i would never reach that watermark of utter fearlessness unless i was there again. or something like it. it was full of possibilities, but in the way that i knew about all the possibilities before they presented themselves and then when they finally did i was just like: oh, there you are. there you are.

There really wasn't one significant experience this year in my life. Rather, it was a slow and steady process of living and continuing to learn to live with my new normal. That isn't to say that anything all that much changed, but it's a recognition that life is never static, there is never a "normal". It's like that saying that you can't ever step in the same river twice. Life is like that and I'm feeling much more comfortable with recognizing the autonomy I do have in my life and not letting resentments take root. I have chosen the life I have, and while not everything is fun and games, this is what I chose and to be resentful just doesn't make sense and isn't how I want to life my life. I don't feel grateful, so much as I appreciate and enjoy all of the good that's in my life. So I'm learning to appreciate all that is front of me, rather than trying to live or expect a different life. What I've got is good enough.

I closed my business and began working at the children's hospital. I am very, very grateful. The work is rewarding and physically better for me. I am starting a brand new program at the hospital and after 6 months it is going well!

I completely gave in to fear and depression. I was completely imobilized for over a week. I think everything in my world had been leading to massive change and transformation. I stopped fighting on my own and sought support through various venues: coaching, therapy, Salsa dancing, art therapy and dream analysis. I did what I wanted to do. When I came through the other side I finally *believed* that pursuing how we want to feel in the world is the best guide. All of my thinking - but not practice - had supported this ingrained approach. Complete failure allowed me to redefine and/or embrace what I most needed.

There are so many to choose from. I'll pick the end of my relationship with Kevin. When it happened, it was like a giant weight lifted and a punch to the gut at the same time. I was relieved that it was over, angry because it got to the point where I wanted it to be over. Sometimes I regret the fact that I didn't end it sooner. Happy because it allowed to me find myself and have the opportunity to find someone who loves me for me, but at the same time it made me incredibly lonely. I not only lost a boyfriend, but a family, and many friends. Probably the loneliest yet most free I have ever felt in my life.

There were two events this year that I consider very significant. 1) My wife and I renewed our vows and had the wedding ceremony and reception that forewent 10 years ago. This demonstrated that ceremonial events and rites can be done at any time, if they're important. We also experienced gratitude at the friends and family who traveled from all over to attend, as well as disappointment in those who chose not to or were unable to travel. 2) I received my blue belt in jiu-jitsu. One the one hand, I really do not care about the belt and would be just as happy to still be training as a white belt, but I have found interest in this as a developmental phenomenon - how I did feel as though I was growing and improving, and almost immediately upon receiving the promotion, felt as though I was worse than ever.

I finally got a sponsor in my SLAA recovery program. We started meeting in January, and with her help, I've been calling her daily and making other outreach calls several times each week. Things are really shifting in terms of my sense of belonging (to life in general.) It's good to realize the part I had in my perpetual feeling of separateness and difficulty connecting. I'm very grateful for the accountability and care I receive from her.

In the past year, I finally moved out of my parents' house. Henry and I moved in june. Though I planned for brad to move with us, he decided against it at the l as st minute, really tearing us apart for the summer. Meanwhile, Henry and I worked through our new life. It w as s scary, I often felt like I was falling, drowning. I still do. I'm so stressed out, but I'm happy that I made this step.

My 92 year old father became ill...cancer out of remission, and began to lose his memory. I was surprised that I really reacted to the stress of this situation. I am usually calm and a person who matter-of-factly plods through what comes. I almost think I needed medication. Combination of so many financial details, legal details, and cross country travel...So, sure, some resentment. Much feeling like I was not doing a good enough job. Resentful of any other demands on my time. I realize everyone who is lucky enough to have parents who grow old, deal with a variation of this. With time, I came to accept that sometimes things would just be good enough, and that was enough. Perfection was not to be obtained. The saga continues....

July 5, 2015, Sam had a meltdown and punched Jess. This was the proverbial straw that caused her to file for divorce less than 1 month later. Of course, this wasn't about me. At first, we were very worried that Jess would stay with Sam, but then we were relieved that she did not. Divorce is a horrible thing, but being married to Sam was worse. So, in the end, I would say this is progress. It will be interesting to see if I feel that is true a year from now. Our hope is that the divorce will be over and Sam will only lurk on the fringes of Jess and Nick's lives. I've changed the names here in order to feel comfortable allowing this to be shown.

Hey, this the same question as last year! Well I guess this has been a different year, so there's going to be a different answer. I just reread my 10Q from last year and it was all about my mom dying. Well, that significant event certainly couldn't repeat itself! So now I have to think about what the significant event was for this year. I'll get back to you. I guess I'm going to have to say that I went to Talmud summer camp with SVARA. It was pretty amazing. I'm not really sure if it's going to change my life or not, but my chevruta, my study partner, and I decided to continue studying together long distance. We were both beginners and didn't finish all of the material that the more advanced campers were able to finish. So we made a pact that we would study together on the phone every two weeks for two hours until we finished what we started at camp. I am grateful that I went and it does leave me somewhat inspired. I don't know that I would necessarily stay interested in learning Talmud had I not made the agreement with my chevruta. But it does make me feel connected with something WAY larger than myself!

I started a new job this year and my husband also started a new job. It has put more of the burden on me, but it has also benefited my family and given them more opportunities. I am grateful for my husband getting a new job, but I am resentful at times that everything falls on me and I have no back up. When he was at his old job, most things fell on him, but he had a back up. I am grateful for the opportunities and the growth and I need to learn how to navigate my feelings and allow them to inform me but not derail me.

This past year, I started grad school, and finished out my first year. I have done well, and have learned a lot, and I'm incredibly grateful that my life is such that I can pursue my desires and dreams without having to worry about economic issues. I am excited to implement my learning in the work I do through Iocari, and I see things growing positively on a regular basis.

In the last year I have had a few significant things happen to me. Over the last year I have reconnected with my high school sweetheart and it has been quite the roller-coaster. I also lost one of my best guy friends I have ever had, Mike Rosenberg. He had a cancerous brain tumor. Both affected me very deeply. I am grateful for all the experiences I have with both gentlemen. They both taught me so much about life and love.

My Mum fell this past spring and with her dementia she is living in a nursing care facility. I feel relieved but, I do miss my Mum. especially the Mum I knew before the dementia showed up.

I finished my Master's in Education and experience/survived/thrived in a year in an elementary classroom. It was hard and stretching and overwhelming, but good and fulfilling in ways that I had been wanting. I am grateful for having completed the program, and curious about how it will support me and shape my work in the future.

I finally got a new job, and I love it! I keep saying I should have done it sooner, but the reality is that this job wasn't available any sooner. These people are like family, and I am learning a lot, and feeling accomplished. I no longer have to commute over the bridge, so I am finally paying down my credit card bill, and I am close enough to ride my bike a few times a week.

It's now slightly over a year, but I had legally changed my name to reflect my gender, and then moved out to the midwest from the east coast to be with my boyfriend, my girlfriend, and their son. This pretty much all led to my birth family not talking to me any more. I don't know if I want to reconnect with them, let alone how. I feel relieved that I was able to perform such a clean break in my transition, but I'm very upset about a lot of things.

two years ago, I was laid off from a great job. It took me two years of looking for work, contracting, interviewing and stressing to finally find a new job, one that will result in my moving across the country, away from all of my family and friends. At first, the prospect terrified me, but I am coming to think it may be the greatest thing that has ever happened to me. I am relieved, excited, still scared, but very grateful for the opportunity and the adventures to come.

During the past year my rapidly deteriorating cardiac condition has led to many ER visits and two difficult surgeries, one of which I am recovering from now. Despite these attempts, my mid to long term prognosis is not good. I cannot say I am grateful for this turn of events, but has had some positive effects. My daughter and I have become much closer. She has made three drop everything trips across the country to love me and help me and my disabled spouse who cannot drive. My wife has shown me all the love she can, sleeping next to me almost every night in my hospital room. My friends on Facebook have rallied round. A dear old freind came for a visit yesterday and I am expecting an old freind and his lovely new wife, who just introduced me to 10Q today to visit in October and am planning, if healthy enough to take a week long cruise with my entire family, including my wonderful mother in law, who, being close to my age (67) also dropped everything for the first operation to take care of us for over six weeks. And maybe most importantly I have been led on a spiritual quest which has given me a 99% certainty that our consciousness goes on after we die. Some of this is frow Jewish sources, some from others. I'd like to go on for a while and I am hoping that you will include my name, Yochanan ben Moshe, in your prayers for the Book of Life this Holy Day season. I am grateful for every new day.

this last year, 2015? I'm not sure anything really significant happened. I did have a long talk with dad about his actions and how it affected Sue and how it made me not want to see him. Yet all the issues around Sue make me upset. She's so demanding. I see her point on some matters, yet the way she handles things, makes me really angry at her. for instance, she asks to spend the night I tell her okay but to call ahead and let me know what night. then she shows up late, it's time for me to go to bed. And she needs this and that. It's gotten to where I'm afraid to tell her things due to my fear of her blowing up. Yet I'm angry that I let myself be a doormat. I just don't want to see her anymore. And she used to be my joy, my rock. I'm resentful. I still haven't gotten over her throwing that plate of gai lon onto my kitchen wall and window. She doesn't feel bad at all, at least per her actions and words.

I met with the dean and talked to him about the bias and malicious behavior of one of the senior leaders. It was taken seriously, the issue was addressed. I am grateful and somewhat relieved. It was nice to have my perspective validated and to have my contributions be encouraged. This and the funding of the family scholarship were both significant experiences.

I gave birth to our second daughter in March. Her birth cracked my heart open even wider than I thought possible and intensified the feelings I already felt for my first daughter. I am go incredibly grateful for my family--my husband, two girls and sweet dog. For the ability to love them and be loved by them. I am reminded constantly about how precious and fleeting life is and hope that this big picture-love and gratitude-- helps me stay grounded when I begin to get overwhelmed by small distractions.

I met a man I really liked, who seemed to be many things i have been hoping/looking for. We became intimate quite quickly and he turned out to be married. I was hurt and disappointed and felt manipulated and kinda shocked that the whole thing happened. But my close friends were incrdiably supportive and helped me to try and take positive things from the experience - an enjoyable sexual experience, feeling attractive, that I was so proactive and responsive rather than passive, enjoying getting to know someone, taking a risk and surviving, that it is kind of a wake up call to my body and loneliness, appreciating the unexpected in some one else. I still sometime torture myself with the anger, sadness and confusion but am trying to use the experience to psuh forward and be more confident.

Finished therapy, after several years. I feel like I'm doing better, but at the same time I kinda feel like I'm tightrope walking without a safety net!

My great granddaughter moving in with me and it's wonderful because she is a special spirit...

In the past year, I changed schools. I was going to a school where I was not challenged at all. I was bored by the curriculum and my peers were not supportive of me. I moved to a small school where I was challenged quite a bit and my peers were very supportive of me. I am glad that I changed schools.

Last year I set a goal for finding my voice. I had Silvano in mind, wanting, needing, to be more direct & almost confrontive with him in regards to the way he treats me, and puts forth so little energy into our "relationship". I also had Maggie in mind, as she has been telling me for years to find my voice. She even gave me a dolphin charm as a means to coach me. She said dolphin represents finding one's voice. We have been friends, sisters, for almost 25 years!! She helped me raise my son, she was a mentor, a coach, a teacher, a support, my best company & so much more. Well, I did find my voice, not with Sil as I had wanted but with Maggie. She has also put forth little to no energy in our friendship and has criticized me & judged me for several years. She has spoken poorly of me to others, telling others she is unable to forgive me for countless attributes & actions, many of which I believe she is the true owner of but is projecting onto me. I was always afraid to approach her about this as I feared losing her. The final straw was her returning boxes of items that belonged to MC. She put them in my garage after I left them with her asking her to give them to MC when whe she saw her in 2 weeks as I was not going to attend the event they were getting together for. I sent an email to MC & cc'd it to Maggie letting her know I felt this was rude & I was not surprised she would act this way. I told her to find another whipping post, that I quit and her reply was to send a you tube video of All Things Must Pass from George Harrison thanking me for releasing her. This pushed me into finding my voice & I replied telling her I released myself, not her and I hold her responsible for what has happenned letting her know how I feel and that I know of the words she has used against me behind my back. How do I feel? Relieved but very sad. I miss her friendship but I realize I lost that years ago and what I was hanging on to was not a friend but the thought of a friend of which she was not. Friends are forgiving & accept you unconditionally and these are things she is not capable of. I am also resentful she could let go of us so easily, she made no effort to reach out to me to try to save our relationship, she simply let it go. I will always miss her, I cry for her, I can't even look at her road sign when I drive by on my way to wherever.

For the second year in a row, one of the significant experiences that happened to me this year is another, or continued, flare of my inflammatory bowel disease - which is not indeterranament bowel disease - symptoms and indications of both ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. I have flared much of the year and ended up in the hospital for 4 days in August.... again. I am pushing through and, though frustrated and concerned, I am getting through... hopefully to remission. Feeling blessed for moments of health and feeling good. Another significant event was really more of a realization. The realization that I feel comfortable in my skin, with myself, with my family and my small group of friends. For what I remember to be the first time, I feel comfortable, at ease and at peace.... blessed and lucky, competitent and happy.

I started Grad School! I had a major panic attack the week before it started and almost dropped out...but now I'm already on my third week of class. I don't have any grades yet, but I think I'm doing well so far. I love what I'm learning about and know I made the right decision for myself...now I just have two years to get through!

1. I finally made it to Harry Potter World! - So blessed and thankful! ❤️ 2. Got dumped in a very cruel manner at a difficult time. - Has made me very angry, bitter and cynical. 💔 😡 3. Saw mom for her 70th birthday! - Haven't stopped feeling guilty for living so far away YET! 😕 4. Enduring a year-long flare of colitis. - I'm stronger than I thought. I have no other choice. 5. Am finally starting to be happy all on my own again. - I am reassured that being alone can be more than "Ok", it can be pretty wonderful.

A significant experience from this past year was the day that my husband and I entered into our matrimony. Our wedding day, July 11th, was filled with so much joy and love. What is most important is that we no longer do long distance (he was in Miami and I was in DC), and we get to do life together. It's the best! So grateful to have a teammate, partner, and friend to do God's work together with.

I have three! 1) I got a full time teaching job in Jan. of last year. Relived that I am teaching again. Inspired to do well and get one closer to home. 2) My son Caleb, had a breakdown due to severe depression and anxiety. He had to be hospitalized for a week. He is now on medication and is trying to get his life back on track. I pray that God works with him and others around him to help him get well and be successful in life. 3) My daughter Rachel graduated High School and started college. I am hopeful she is successful as well. All of these events have tested my strength, and my faith. I think I have grown closer to God because of all of them.

I learned to swim. I'm still afraid at times when I feel I'm going to run out of breath. It made me pay more attention to my breathing. The lesson: a pause prevents panic. It reinforced mindfulness in my daily life. I swim in water. I swim in life.

We finally decided to remodel our kitchen -- we finished in May -- and put our home on the market. I feel re-energized and inspired to start this next chapter in our life.

I realized that some people really and truly will hate you for no reason at all. I realized that many people who are in positions of authority are really and truly incompetent, and can act like children. I am grateful to realize that when someone dislikes me it may not be because of something I've done. It may be because they're just acting like 5th graders.

I left my abusive husband! He had been very emotionally, mentally, verbally, and physically abusive, hitting my son, shoving and slapping me, calling us both terrible names, and raping me throughout our marriage. I finally knew I couldn't stay when he tried to abduct Danger. So I left. We're in a fierce court battle now over divorce and custody issues. I recently procured a new lawyer who my rabbi recommended; hopefully that was the power of Gd, guiding me to this new ray of hope who seems to think their firm can get the job done right. I am relieved to be away from this man, but I am now worried about my financial station. My anxiety is fading, but is still present. I have a new job that has brought me a few new friends who are incredibly supportive and understanding, which I'm thankful for. I resent my ex for putting me in this position and endangering our son, but I also resent myself for not heeding my family's advice (and my own intuition) before things got as bad as they did.

Within the past year, my dog of 10 years passed away. This was one of the most traumatic experiences of my life and one that I will never forget. Dogs hold interesting places in peoples life. My dad mentioned that memories with dogs are always positive because all of your experiences with them are positive. I agree. I will always remember my dog taking long naps with me, sitting beside me while I walked on the treadmill, and even following me into the bathroom. She always wanted to be by my side. This loyalty is something that people can certainly learn from animals. While we can't physically be present with the people we love in our lives, we can be there for them in ways that enable them to sense our presence in their lives. How can I walk beside others as they go through life? I am grateful for the lessons from my dog.

My 29 year old son moved out of the house. It was a long drawn out process. He had to keep returning and going through his stuff. Finally, his room is a guest room, and he is living with his boyfriend. It is a major step in his personal growth. He is becoming self supporting. I am happy but apprehensive. He's having trouble making ends meet, making only a little over minimum wage. The job is not where he wants to make a career. There is a lot of helplessness because I really can't help him. He has to figure it out on his own.

This last year - one of the hardest break ups of my life and the end of my MFA put me in touch with my own Dark Night Of The Soul. I had to face the questions behind the questions: what's the point of my being here? What do I believe about myself? What do I know about myself? How do I find meaning? I can't believe that was only a year ago, the time I sat with x in Pacifica and felt, for the first time, like everything in my current life was falling apart. I had to reach out for my roots in a way that I never had before. I had to come around to the realization, without external validation (even in spite of external validation) or who I was. That;s huge. I feel like I've been shrunk and resized. I feel more certain than ever. I feel terrified, some days I can't even get out of bed, but I feel so close to who I want to embody in this world. I feel grateful for the person who told me that I was not worth anything, and who thereby forced me to go inside and realize that I am, g-damnit.

I had a kidney stone. Before I was given the diagnosis there was a period where the radiographer had encouraged me to see my doctor sooner rather than later, burt hadn't explained why. I spent the period in between thinking of my mortality and what I would do if I only had a few months left. Thankfully the news wasn't that bad.

My first instinct was to write about Ben and the Pennine Way because it's on my mind and recent. But on reflection, I think my low spot in January around the time of my oral surgery, post-Liz memorial was more significant. And most significant was that I sought help and solace. I was weepy and sad and couldn't see a way out but managed to turn things around. Sugar detox, talking to loved ones, meditating, and exercising. It really was transformative to manage it as I did. To know that I can. Grateful and relieved and fortunate

I started in a new position at work. I went from a job that I had been doing for many years to a position in a new area of the company where I had less experience. I was offered the job because of my organizational and coordination skills, which is definitely flattering. But I went from feeling like an expert to feeling like a novice. It's been six months and I still have an awful lot to learn. But the people I work with are excellent and helpful. It's a big change, but also a great challenge and opportunity. I'm grateful for the chance to learn and grow.

My father died. However, I was lucky enough to go to see him in his last hours and to attend the funeral. Not easy when you live so far away. Both of us were lucky enough to attend the distribution of ashes at the Bluff in Victor Harbor. The moment it happened a tremendous storm arose to show us that he was happy and was shooing us off into our lives. It is a mixture of sadness and relief. Dad had significant dementia and could not really do anything any longer. He had already lost his life. His wife took amazing care of him so we are forever grateful for that. At the other end of the spectrum, a significant experience has been watching our little grand-daughter grow into a person. We are so grateful and inspired by her. The third thing is that one of us, not telling who, turned 60. It gave us pause to spend more time thinking about the future and retirement. Maybe one day we too will be old.

This year I am the direct assistant to a new person. I am happy. It was time for the previous person to retire. I loved working with her, but we answered the questions presented the same way year after year. The questions at work have remained the same but the approaches we use to answer them are different. While I am happy at work I am tired of doing it day after day. This is a change I am grateful for. I am grateful that I have my job. I am the same person I always am at work. Hardworking and fun loving.

It is interesting that nothing in particular comes to mind, which is very representative of the way life has felt - stuck. I have trusted my spiritual director, Carol, as my major touch point. I have had a lot of doubt about my own spirituality. I have walked with this as best I could. It does occur to me that one new and significant activity was hospice training and I have one client- Joe - whom I've grown fond of. Within the last two weeks I've taken huge steps towards new work opportunities and feel certain that a change is in the works. I also did some inquiry into buying a home. I guess I've taken many small but significant steps towards the life that looks closer to my dreams. I feel proud when I think of how I've walked with my doubt and discouragement and continued to love ferociously, and be in integrity with my values.

My company announced that there would be significant layoffs across the firm this year, and this made me feel that my job was no longer safe whereas in previous years I felt that it was. Initially I was worried, however I'm beginning to see that possibly this could be a good thing as it could give me an avenue to pursue new opportunities.

I visited three national parks, including hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, and the peak of Angel's Landing in Zion, in spite of my fears. I'm grateful to have finally taken this beautiful trip, grateful to have Shane by my side, and inspired to visit more of the national parks as soon as possible.

My husband and I decided, just in the last month, that it's time to start our family! I'm scheduled for genetic counseling on Wednesday of this week, which is both exciting and nerve-wracking. I am so grateful that he's able to overcome his previous negative experiences with his ex-wife's pregnancies, and relieved that we've come to this decision now, before it's really too late to try.

My mother's death was the most important thing that happened to me this year, or this decade for that matter. Until she became ill, I frankly thought that she would be with us for a good long time. It was an assumption based on evidence--the woman had been healthy her entire life, she took pretty good care of herself, she was skinny, and her own mother had lived well into her nineties. Her being alive would just, I thought, be my reality for years to come. How wrong I was, and how quickly things can all go south. I don't know what to feel. Everything has just become that much more flat.

I went on a month long vacation with my boyfriend...after being apart for two months while he stayed with his daughter and ex wife. We were running a half marathon together, then touring around South America. I got injured during the race, and we got in a big fight the first week after the race. I could not get out of the country and was forced to stay. I tried to manage my expectations of the situation, which was tough but I was proud of how I handled it. Right before the end of the trip, he cheated on me and lied about it. I wanted so badly to believe him that I sort of gave him a pass. I worked hard to be the bigger person for the next few months, and he kept treating me badly and taking advantage. I told myself over and over that I could just play along, but in the end it was too hard for me, and obviously not good for me. It also turned out that my injury was worse than I thought, and I continue to work through that as well. The whole episode crushed me. I kept going back hoping that I was wrong about him, and I kept being reminded that I was not. I was and continue to be disappointed in myself that I have not extricated myself cleanly from the situation. I am irrationally afraid of his reaction, of upsetting him, disappointing him. And I am disappointed that at this place in my life, I continue to hide from things the way I have here, giving my power away over and over.

My Zaidy passed away. He inspired me, and always will. There was an element of relief in the struggle of his last few months being lifted. This was surely the most significant experience of the past year, because of how central my Zaidy has been in my life. He was a mensch who will continue to inspire me for all the days of my life.

This year, I got to go back and do the 2015 AIDS/LifeCycle ride. I had previously done the event in 2013, riding every single mile. This year...was a bit different. I had broken my foot one week before we left for the trip and I ended up learning a great deal about appreciating the trip you are ON and not the trip you EXPECTED. Once I let go and just let the experience be what it was, I met some amazing people who really enriched my life as much as every single one of those miles. It's a lesson I could use more. We hear lots of variants of it... the one I am used to is "Life is what happens when you are making other plans". 2015 reminded me to take a breath, look at where you are, and ask yourself if you are making the most of where you are rather than worrying about where you SHOULD be. It also gave me the dream of my three friends, now passed. Each of them urging me to wake up and ride on day 5 of the ride when I had given up the night before and thought the pain in my foot was too much to bear. At their urging and reminder, I woke up in time to get on the road and ride every mile of what is the single most beautiful day on AIDS/LifeCycle. I'll never forget that gentle nudge to try just that tiny bit harder. It was a gift of a day that I will never forget. It makes me cry to think about even now.

Unfortunately my experience is once again a health issue. The effects of radiation treatment for tongue cancer nine years ago has caused many problems with my teeth and jaw. The result of this is teeth have been extracted, osteoradionecrosis diagnosed and am on my second course of daily hyperbaric oxygen treatments to counteract the effects of the dental surgery and hopefully contain the condition. I can say that I am grateful for the amazing dental surgeon; relieved that the condition seems to be under control and not worsening. I am inspired to continue with a positive outlook as there are many patients far worse than me, with whom I share the chamber each day. I did wonder "why me, haven't I had enough" - but then I thought, "why NOT me - I am strong, I am a survivor".

I was able to take a stand and settle a property dispute in mediation. I was scared, believed I might lose the legal dispute due to not having taken action sooner, and yet deep down, knew it was a risk I had to take. I was taught to be helpful, agreeable, to turn the other cheek and not rock the boat. These things ended up working against me in so many ways that at one point I truly believed I was a bad person who deserved the negative things happening to her. The other always seemed to be bigger, smarter, more able, better prepared and yet I knew this was all in my imagination, it was not really me. I was bigger, I was wise and yes I was kind, but not a push over. Not any more. I was going to trust my gut which was in line with my heart and with my intellect and I knew now that my intellect was sound and that I could trust myself. I had to enact this trust in myself daily, as the legal dispute commenced and took on a life of its own. I found myself running daily to the puget sound, down through the woods past my home on Gull Harbor. Willing a belief in the goodness of life, in hard lessons learned, and intentionally committing this learning to having a more positive outlook on life. I began to see that I was at a crossroads and that love and trust in love hung in the balance.

Just one? My my big brother's worsening Alzheimer's. I was there with him and my sister-in-law on the Alzheimer's walk in January and watched him struggle but succeed in giving a speech. Now in the last few months I watch him struggle just to find his footing in time and place. His attempts at denying what is happening to him even as he recognizes it is heart wrenching. Having that coincide with another friend's diagnosis of cancer brought me low. Once it was named that I was feeling "heart heavy" my spirits began to lift. The power of naming is curative, strengthening. Awareness of the everyday graces deepen. Looking anew at the redemption in kindness and compassion, for me and for others.

I realized he will never be mine. I have to forget him. I am resentful at myself for allowing myself to be degraded and treated as merely a second, third, or fourth choice. I hope as I am reading this next year, I am in a much better place emotionally.

This year really hasn't been that significant...it seems almost more like precursor year to something bigger!!

I sent my oldest to sleepaway camp for 4 weeks. It caused me to avoid her room because it was the longest we've been apart since she was born and her empty room made me miss her terribly. She came back so self-assured that I ended up bring grateful that we could give her this opportunity.

In January, I was put in a mental hospital for a week. My depression was creating a serious downward spiral, and I had become a danger to myself. Looking back, I realize that it was entirely necessary, but at the time I was admitted involuntarily, and I didn't go down without a fight. (Have you ever called a doctor a cunt? I have.) I missed a week of classes and had to withdraw from three of them (I was a sophomore in college). I missed a major social event and fundraiser I had been planning with an organization since October. I caused my housemates worry about me. I caused my mother to fly five states over at the last minute. I made my father foot my giant hospital bill. That hospital stay was one of the scariest, most confusing weeks of my life, but I'm not sure I would be alive without it. It put me on the right path; I started taking more effective medication, I wrote many poems I am still proud of, and I learned to stop doubting the effectiveness of therapy. The psych ward is truly rock bottom. As soon as they bring you in, they take all of your personal belongings, as well as anything you can potentially hurt yourself with (shoelaces, razors, pencils with the metal at the end, etc.); it's dehumanizing. However, it turns out the fortune cookie cliches are correct, and the only way out of rock bottom is up. It's sure as hell not an easy climb, but when I look back down and see how far I've come in only eight months, I can't help but be proud.

being diagnosed for depression. No longer having to fight the dark demons alone. Getting medication for depression. Also discovering running and how much I love running. Training for a half marathon. It's a challenge but my only guarantee within the running is to NEVER GIVE UP! This has started to positively influence the rest of my life.

I had a baby! My daughter was born at the end of March and she has completely changed my life. We went through a lot when I was pregnant with her. We were told she might not make it. We are so blessed that she is here and happy and healthy. She is almost 6 months old and the light of my life. She makes me crazy some days but I can't imagine my life without her. She makes this face sometimes that just cracks me up. She puffs her cheeks out and pouts with her lower lip at the same time and says "hmmm". She's amazing :)

I just moved across the country, like a week ago. It's the biggest thing I've ever accomplished from setting the goal to doing the planning and saving and actually following through. It's also the biggest project my partner and I have undertaken together, and it's still surreal. There are these little moments when anxiety gets the best of me, I'll feel incredibly vulnerable and scared, but for the most part I'm just completely in awe of how smoothly everything has gone so far, how well we planned and organized, and mostly how well we worked together to make this happen, to take a chance on creating a better life for each other in a place that isn't haunted by personal tragedy and frustration. I feel relieved, grateful, inspired, sure, but also giddy and terrified and lost and strangely more at home and at ease than I've felt in years.

Stuart went to China last spring break with a friend, and then he brought his friend to live with us for the summer. It changed the way Stuart looks at his future business prospects. We are looking at the world, as a family, with a more global perspective. Currently the Chinese Yuan has been devalued, and I don't know how that will affect our friends from China, but things are changing. At least we are a bit more aware. Martin has started studying classical Spanish guitar and flamenco. I realized when he said he wanted violin lessons at age 7 or so, he was serious. I'm not the best mom. I knew that. Maybe these are not significant experiences, but I'm realizing that the kids are not going to be with me at home much longer, and I hope I continue to do my best, even if I'm not perfect. Realizing both my sons are better than either my husband or me were at their age (or any age) is something to be proud of. They inspire me.

Things are moving on. Daughter 1 got a job. I don't know if she realizes how much she learned doing a low skilled job, but she increased her self-confidence and realized what she wants to do. She's now in school pursuing a realistic dream! Son 3 is also working on his place in the working world. Plan A didn't work out, plan B was surprisingly interesting, but what will be the impact of his recent move? And, mostly we've both retired... To the question: happy, concerned, happy and concerned.

My son bar mitzvah very meaningful and inspiring

Two of my closest friends have lost their jobs very suddenly and through no fault of their own. This has made me both angry and sad. It is painful to see people that you love be hurt/hurting and feel unable to do much beyond supporting them. This has certainly curbed any tendency I might have to complain about my job since I feel very lucky at this point to have my job, especially because I still like it very much. Also, this has served as another reminder to live in the moment.

I got to do a workshop with Beth Sepko. I feel like it was an answer to not only a prayer but a result of my words framing my world. God always said the end result with His voice out loud. Then that is what He received. I feel that my faith/believe in God's Word is becoming more real to me. This is God's plan.

What comes immediately to mind is the previously unthinkable: I found love! And on Okcupid (known for so long as "okstupid" to me,) of all places. After years of "fallowness", false leads, rejects, rejections, (but mostly just the proverbial 'crickets 'n tumbleweeds') and an on-and-off-again relationship with the okcupid dating site (deactivating/reactivating my profile on a hyper-neurotic, monthly basis), I am finally in a deeply fulfilling relationship. I am grateful and inspired beyond my wildest dreams. (All hyperboles apply here.)

I started nursing school. It is hard but manageable. I have continued to work and it makes me wish I wasn't. I am greatful that I can do it. I feel blessed that I can reduce the work enough to manage school. I'm looking g forward to a new adventure.

My mother died in February of this year. She had cancer in three areas and refused chemo, the latter because of watching friends go through it. She died stuff months after her initial diagnosis. I was glad she got to meet her last grandchild, my only daughter. She had one Christmas with her, got to shop for a girl. Everyone wished she had longer with the littlest one. It feels like she was cheated out of being a grandmother. I have a whole host of emotions. I'm grateful for the time we had together, the short time my daughter had with her. I feel a loss every time I want to call her. A loss that doesn't seem to be going away. I resent losing her, if she'd just stopped smoking when my Dad did. I miss her more than I thought I would, only my Grandmother is really interested in the kids now, I miss my Mom's fervent interest in my kids. I miss her. I know the loss will fade eventually. But for now it's still a bit raw.

I met and fell for a man. It was what I had been hoping and waiting for for several YEARS. Tried my hardest to be the best girlfriend I could...it wasn't enough and he did not love me back. That old song! I'm conflicted. Feels good and bad, alive and dead in my heart. But I still choose hope. Most days.

I guess that the most socially significant moment would be my sister's wedding. Everyone would agree that that is definitely a significant moment. But for me, what was significant was this fountain of senseless, sourceless rage that appeared in me about a second after the ceremony and didn't disappear for weeks. I was angry--hugely, amazingly angry--at her, but never with her. In fact, I've still never told her, which kind of calls into question my honesty, I suppose. But to me, the most significant thing was everything that anger pushed me towards--more self-awareness, more internal boundaries, a renewed commitment to knowing and learning about myself and taking care of myself. I didn't/ haven't talked to her because I love her enough to want to help her preserve her memories of her day, but I also realized that I wanted to love her more than I wanted to be right, or mad. I'm grateful to the extent that I woke up to a lot of lies I was telling myself, both in the anger and what the anger brought up, and honestly, I'm grateful I still love her so much--there were a few days and weeks where I thought I'd lost one of the deepest relationships of my life.

Unfortunately, this year has had significant events. The most disturbing so far is that my 24 year old nephew almost died. When I got the call, I was told he probably would die. I don't really know how him and am not close to my sister and brother-in-law. In fact, I don't particularly like my sister or her spouse; however, the thought of a mother losing her child is too much to bear. My sister has not had the easiest life. She has created many of her problems, but many, many of them were and are beyond her control. I don't have children so I imagine the possibility of losing a child is a billion trillion trillion times worse than I could imagine, then even worse. It was scary, but amazingly against all the odds, he is alive. I don't know what will become of the situation, but I asked for his life to be spared and it was. I feel the greatest sense of gratitude. I'm not sure my nephew wants to be alive, but he has a chance now. That's so fucking great. And, it is really in his hands now. I hope he'll choose to live. If he doesn't though, I get it. I don't agree, but I understand. Depression sucks.

I am relieved that I stepped away from appointed ministry. Working 7 days a week gave me no time to rest and reset, no Sabbath. I now have more time to be with family on the week-ends. I still fill in here and there. That is my passion and vision,to come along side and carry the load for others.

Noa's bat mitzvah was the greatest weekend. Surrounded my family, friends, loved ones -- everything was perfect. I am grateful, relieved and fully inspired. It is actually hard to believe how much we enjoyed every minute of it (even the challenges). Most money we've ever spent in one day and by far worth every penny. Still worried (always) about how the good and the bad always come together and I waited for the other shoe to drop. That shoe may be my mom and how she's aging, but it may be something else. Only time will tell.

In the past year, I have been able to secure the opportunity to do my counseling practicum and internship work in the practice I chose. From the beginning of this program, I have known that I want to specialize in the treatment of sexual addiction and I feel very fortunate to have this opportunity. I am grateful that my path crossed with the founder of the practice several years ago and that he was willing to recommend me for this position and to be able to receive the training I have received.

Good Lord, where do I start? It began with a trip to DC, where I reconnected with a friend who I'd been in love with for years and years. That reconnection lead to some serious soul searching. Which in turn, led to my pending divorce. So I ended a long, wonderful relationship, and began a new wonderful relationship. Which is joyous and painful and miraculous and hard and scary and blissful and every feeling in between. In this moment, in the thick of it, I am grateful for my new relationship and wracked with guilt over the ending of my old relationship simultaneously. It's been the most significant transition in my life in many, many years. Perhaps ever. I am happy and afraid and tired. But ultimately hopeful.

I lost my virginity. I am grateful because the guy I experienced it with, was wonderful and gentle. I am happy it happened- I don't see it as a huge milestone or anything. I now realize that sex is just a part of the human experience- much like eating, failing, drinking, and breathing comprise the human experience. I guess I'm relieved because I'm no longer the oldest virgin in the room. I also may be falling in love for the first time in my life.

My 92 year old mother went into a hospital bed in the middle of the living room in her own home with her own dog. I am grateful, relieved and inspired.

There are three things that are all intertwined, even though on the surface they might seem unrelated. First, my husband retired from TEC (Cardno-GS, as it were) and became a personal trainer, thereby launching a new career and vocation. Second, We spend a month (31 days!) in Europe, playing and living and reflecting. Third, my office closed and I moved my office to my house. I am grateful Kevin has found a new direction, and also jealous, or envious, or something. It's not a bad feeling, but I would like to have something similar for myself. I saw what a life of leisure could be, but am not sure it is what I want for every day, day-to-day. And, working from home, I see what it could be like full time, or at least am getting an inkling of that.

The heat was oppressive. Not the kind of heat found during the summer months on residential beaches in my hometown. This was real heat. This heat engulfed you to the point that it seemed that you had never experienced anything, but this heat. Anyone with even an inkling of sensibility would take every measure necessary to mitigate or thwart this heat. However, I was running. Drenched in perspiration, I was sprinting as hard as physically possible with my heavy breathing drowned out by ecstatic cheers. Hearing the wiz of the ball, a sock filled with sand, behind me, I told myself: “ White kids from Scituate should really have nothing to do with traditional dodgeball games in the middle of East Africa.” Despite the constant humiliation I experienced at the hands of Tanzanians students (half my size) in various sporting events, these three days on a retreat was profoundly the most transformative event in my life. Amidst the turbulence of the overflowing Dar es Salaam metropolis, the retreat center was a humble abdication. The days were spent in group and silent reflection among students from my school and Loyola, the Jesuit school of Tanzania. There was the obvious intermissions to blow off steam in various bonding activities in the aforementioned, unrelenting heat, however we were luckily refreshed with, as customary, scorching hot tea breaks. While the scheduled speeches and discussions hold clear significance, what I remember most from the retreat was simply being with others. By “others”I do not necessarily mean the sheer fact that I was with other people, but others in the sense that I was with people of a different background, culture, and life experience. It was fundamentally remarkable that as a group, consisting of students from all walks of life, we were able to collaborate in one singular meaningful experience.

I've been diagnosed and am in the treatment for breast cancer. It's been a "fun" ride filled with anxiety, frustration, anger, and "why me?" with a sprinkling of depression. I've had surgery, which took 2 weeks to recover from enough to return to work, and I am about to start radiotherapy. I'm still anxious about it, and I"m not looking forward to the final level of treatment - that being tamoxifen - which apparently is rather awful for pre-menopausal women like myself. I'm relieved that my cancer was only Stage 1, and grateful that really I'm very lucky to live in a country where breast cancer is treated for free by my medical system. I couldn't imagine how awful this would be in somewhere like the US.

When my boss's boss told me I wasn't working hard enough. I realized he really was an as whole and I had been stupid for working as I was for such a disrespectful, ungrateful company.

That my daughter is reaching the late teenage milestones in good style- with dignity and growing maturity of focus for her future and the devotion to achieving those goals. I am delighted and smile inwardly thinking she is far beyond my own level at the same age. I am impressed and happy for her. She will be much more likely to have favourable life outcomes- health, housing and relationships. In her thirties, she might recognise the importance of this early diligence. I am always grateful for her health and increasingly for her happiness in life. There are no next questions prudent to ask. All is as it might be at this stage. Time will see how her book unfolds.

My mother came to live with me part time. It has been very challenging. I am struggling to continue to have a life; loss of privacy is difficult. There are some aspects of the aged that are distressing to deal with. My mobility and independence, not to mention my insouciance and joie de vivre, are limited. I have to remind myself to be kind, to be patient, to be respectful.

On January 17th, I finally left the abusive relationship I was in. Lauren helped me move out and I moved in with Michelle from my old job. Then, two weeks later, I moved in with Phil, a childhood acquaintance. It greatly affected me. My whole life trajectory changed and all of a sudden I was figuring out where to live, how to support myself all over again, then dealing with the emotional aftermath of leaving a fiancé and his little girl I was going to adopt. I feel relieved. Relieved that I'm no longer in an abusive relationship, and if I'm really honest, relieved I don't have to be a mom full-time to a child that isn't mine. It doesn't mean that I wasn't more than willing to be there as her mom forever, but I just couldn't deal with that relationship any longer. I'm grateful for the experience and all that it taught me.

I broke my leg. Required surgery and wasn't able to walk for 3 months followed by having difficulty walking still. At this moment I am greatful for the perspective it gave me. Made me realize how I needed to appreciate and care for my body more. Made me realize I needed to jump off docks and do slip and slides while I was still able! Also this left me apprehensive as I do still fear that I may have life long pain or difficulties due to this injury.

After having my mammogram in March, my doctor called to tell me that I needed to have another screening done of my left breast. I was a little concerned, since this was the second time in 4 years I've had to do this. The follow-up screening was inconclusive and, as a result, I had to have a biopsy. I can honestly say that I don't remember much from the week between getting that news and having the procedure. I was required to lie face down on a table resembling a massage table, which the technician elevated so that my breast hung down and the doctor could work from underneath. It was like an oil change. I lead a healthy lifestyle and have regular checkups. I initially felt as if my body betrayed me. However, meditation and prayer helped me get back to center and gain control of my emotions. I didn't tell my children about the biopsy. My thought was that I would share when and if there was something to share. Thankfully, it didn't come to that.

Five years ago I retired from a job without having the proverbial victory lap. I left questioning if I was as good a teacher as I had always believed. This past year I decided to return to a school that I had worked at year's ago, but at point as a sub. I still have that touch and I am relieved.

Traveling to. Israel and meeting some of the most exceptional people I have ever encountered. It made me much more reflective and aware of the opportunities that have been presented to me. It also made me aware of the potential I have to affect change in the world. I am exceptionally grateful for the opportunity that was provided to me in Israel and I'm inspired to keep working hard and everything I do in education and life and to work to continue building those professional and personal relationships with everyone around me.

I got accepted to attend the Evergreen State College in Washington. After reading last years answers I am even more proud that I have made progress toward my future career. I am extremely grateful. My grades in Community College were less than exemplary and, in all honesty, I didn't think I would be accepted. There was a section of the application where I was allowed to write a short summary of why I felt I was deserved to attend. I put a lot of thought and detail into it. I feel like thats the reason I was accepted. Relieved? somewhat. I have a lot more work to do now but at least I have been afforded the opportunity to do it. Honestly, I'm a bit anxious about it. Resentful? Not at all Inspired? Not as much as I would like, but Im very excited to be going back to school and exercising my mind. I feel like the inspiration with come

Last summer it became evident that my then 3 year old daughter was experiencing a lot of distress, she withdrew into herself and stopped looking at us, or on the other extreme began to have extreme tantrums. It was/is extremely distressing to experience her pain and not to know how to help or what it meant. It turned out to be difficult to find help, Maxine is covered under medicare, and apparently there are very few pediatric occupational therapists who wil treat medicare patients. Eventually we found a place that would treat her. This began what will most likely be a very long journey to understand what she is going through and how to help her feel better. A year later after a lot of work with different kinds of therapists, she is a lot better and happier, and we understand things a bit more, even if we still don't quite know for sure what is going on, or what this means for her. I am am grateful for the support of our friends and family in this difficult time, I am relieved to find that there is help and that she is improving, I am resentful at the educational and medical system, which has been almost impossible to navigate, I am inspired by Maxine, who has overcome so much and is so amazing and beautiful inside and out.

I finally gave my house back to BofA. The bastards refused to work with us to help deal with the fact that, due to their market manipulations, my house was suddenly worth about 40% what I mortgaged! How did they deal with this? By offering it for sale for $153,000 (from $330,000). No one offered that much, so BofA now owns it. So after Bank of America (what an insult to the USA) forced us into bankruptcy, helped to ruin our marriage, and made enemies of the whole freaking world, they ended up stuck with the house anyway. Then they sent someone to "secure" the house. How did they do so? Did they use a locksmith to unlock the house, clean it up, replace the carpets, and get it ready for sale? HA! No! They broke in through the garage window, drilled and pried and destroyed the steel door leading into the house (it will need replacement), and did not clean anything nor change any locks. Geez. But I bought my RV and moved into it. I've been "full-timing" 20 minutes from my girls for about 1.5 months now. It's hard, of course, but I'm out of that damned house and one step closer to escaping FL, which I hate with every fiber of my being. Next step is buying a truck big enough to haul my giant RV. So right now I'm feeling a confusing mish-mash of emotions. I'm relieved to be rid of the house and out of the HOA (I will NEVER live in an HOA again!), eager to escape FL, sickened by the conditions of the Orange Blossom KOA where I currently live, and sad that I will be leaving all 3 of my girls behind.

My husband was laid off in April—the third time in six years. W-T-absolute-F?! He's very talented but not the best at playing office games, so I fear he's often overlooked when it comes time for promotions and low-hanging fruit when it comes to picking who should be laid off. The layoff has triggered a major depressive episode and the stress from the financial worries have trickled down to our girls. I'm worried about what will happen if he doesn't find something soon. Why did this have to happen again? The precariousness of our lives is so stressful.

My youngest son went to college. I had to adjust to the "empty nest". It took some adjusting to, but it has become the new normal. I am relieved that I have adjusted to it as well as I have. I am grateful that he is not too far away and we can visit if we want. I am also grateful that he is good about calling once a week at least to keep in touch.

I was quite sick for 9 months, it made me always nervous and sad all the time. Grateful and relieved that it turned out to something not to bad

This year, the last of my twenties, has been particularly uneventful. That may be a good thing, after all. Since my birthday, I have been assessing what I have accomplished or have not yet before my 30th. I've reviewed a few times that quote I read from Joseph Campbell, on the stages of a man's life. "At ten, an animal; at twenty, a lunatic; at thirty, a failure;" and I laugh and say: check check check. As a result of the distress and depression I have felt recently, perhaps for allowing such thinking to take place in my mind, I have reengaged with my spiritual development; visiting the temple every week and meditating upon Buddha's teachings, the Tao, Gita and any scripture which teaches liberation. Finding them all complimenting the other, allowing me to understand one from the other. This week particularly, of great help has been receiving my answers from last year. I appreciated the value of this ritual much more than ever before. It's worth it. It reminded me of what was still important, what still is, and who. As a result, I also decided to go and read as many answers from all the other wonderful people who take a moment each year to write this and learn from their life's experiences. To appreciate their sharing, their suffering. To show me that what I don't believe to be able to endure, others are enduring. So today, and because of the understandings I've had recently, I am grateful, I am relieved. I have let go of a lot of resentment, although at times I still catch my mind wanting to ruminate the old ways. And I hope I can soon feel inspired again. I am hopeful.

I had been dating someone for nearly 2 years and he dumped me then immediately got a new girlfriend. I came to find out that he'd been cheating on me...a lot. He had told me that his last ex took a year to get over him and talked to him about it. He told me that that was pathetic and pitiful and that she was just craaaaazy about him and craaaaaazy in general and I believed him. But she loved him, and I loved him, and it's been almost one year and I still resent it--and him. I've learned a lot about myself, and a lot about relationships. I'm still angry, I'm still resentful, I'm still talking about it to this day. It was my first/only "real" relationship. Of course it's got me fucked up. I feel badly that he made me feel like this recovery period was something to be ashamed of. It's not my fault that he cheated on me. It's not my fault that he wasn't as emotionally engaged as I was. It's not my fault that he recovers quickly from this and that I don't. This is just how I work, how it works. I'm still getting over it.

Staged my house for sale and it just sold. I'm moving after 15 years and it's overwhelming and emotional and it will be a relief. I am grateful for some things and relieved about other things. Whew! My back hurts/

Ben & Sahar got married on August 22. I am profoundly grateful- for their obvious love and commitment, for the friends who volunteered to help, for all the people who traveled such a distance to Flossmoor, for Fred, Jay, & Libby. So fortunate. I also learned to let go of perfection.

I quit seeing my therapist because I didn't want to spend my parents' money on therapy anymore. I want to be financially self-sufficient. I still need to close that door and send my therapist my thank you gift. I know I need a new therapist and am now searching for a new one. But I am forever grateful to my therapist for helping me these years.

Two biggest life time solemate type loves left me and pointed out my big flaws as they went. I was inspired to improve. I was devastated that I couldn't. I was grateful to to be relieved of a deep love that could not accept me as I am. I was resentful of my affliction that prevented these women from saying close to me.

I lost what I thought was going to be my dream job after just 6 months. I was working for one of my best friends and thought that moving my family to do this would be a great long term move. I thought it would be the right next step in my career and was really excited about it. In some ways the rationale he gave me is unimportant. That being said, it was a pretty huge shock to me. And I suppose I feel grateful, relieved and resentful. Grateful that I'm out of what was clearly a very unhealthy environment and grateful I have the opportunity to look forward to what's next. Relieved that it's over and that I don't have to pretend to be onboard with some of the things that were happening. Resentful that I didn't have a real opportunity to do well and that I was - in my opinion- mistreated and sabotaged. I'm trying to turn the corner on this and respond well even though I feel pretty burned for my self and my family.

I have been sick for 90% of the past year. For five months with a mysterious illness, and then the next four months with a horrible flu. It's been horrible. It made me put off getting my doctorate, and I haven't even talked to the department because my health has been so flaky that it's like one good week in amongst two months of hell. How do I explain that to someone without going into painfully excruciating detail of my medical history. It's far more effort than I am willing to put in. It made the year such a waste of a year.

I suppose that it's not actually one event, but a series of events that have been the most significant to me this past year. Spending time with the women at the jail has impacted me in such a profound way. The insights that they bring about faith, life, and suffering have been born out of lives that I cannot begin to fathom. They touch my heart in such a deep way that I can feel our interconnectedness in the very depths of my bones. We are one - connected by the Spirit - sharing the same path but for a brief moment. But those moments change my life forever.

I gave my first seminar at Mary Crawford's meditation retreat in Hansville, Washington. It was the realization of the beginning of a dream to help women find and raise their feminine energy. It was so wonderful to see other women find the magic of eye to eye connection and to feel the bond that comes from breathing for the other. LOVED IT!

We took a family vacation to the beach. It was wonderful, perfect, and invigorating. I loved it. I was grateful.

My daughter turned 3 and my son turned 7. I am so proud of them both and proud of myself and my husband for raising them in the very best way that we can, (foibles aside). Parenting is the most rewarding and most challenging experience I can possibly imagine.

I got engaged. It felt very scary but also exciting. I had been thinking about it for some time and actually doing it was somewhat relieving. I have a lot to think about now but just trying to take it one step at a time and this decision was an important one that needed to happen. It took a lot of courage but when I think back on it now I have less doubt and more energy to make my partnership work and be different than my parents, filled with love.

My boyfriend of over 5 years broke up with me in early January. It affected me tremendously. More than being laid off this year did, as at least I knew I was going to be laid-off. I have to say the experience made me resentful, grateful, AND relieved...sometimes all at once. I feel he was not honest with me, which accounts for the resentment. At the same time, I am relieved to no longer be in a relationship with him...and I probably would have remained in that dysfunctional relationship had he not ended it himself. So, resentful, relieve, and oddly grateful.

I lost my job, which resulted in a roller coaster of emotion ranging from Stockholm to abhorrence. I have an amount of gratitude for the experience I got from the job and the freedom to chase after other positions. However, I think I will carry a lot of bitterness toward the CEO of the company. No wonder the man cannot seem to get that company to take flight. He fires everyone like we never mattered; with that much negative energy and bad instant karma, that place will never take-off. Sometimes I want to write a contemptuous review on Glassdoor, but I do not want to give that lousy company any validity by having to start a Glassdoor account for him. I think even without a presence on Glassdoor (complete with 1 star reviews), that CEO will do a fine job continuing to make nothing of the company. As much as I hate feeling so scornful, I just think he deserves every ounce of misfortune that he doled out to the rest of us.

My husband got in a car accident and totaled his car. Luckily, he was not badly hurt. It made us both more careful drivers. I am grateful for my husband. He puts his family first, working for us, spending extra time with us. He has supported us and taken care of us the entire time we've been together. I appreciate all he does and realize how much he means to me. I can never express to him how much I love and appreciate him, though I know I don't and can never show it enough.

I had two significant experienced in the past year, and both happened at almost exactly the same time. Within one week's time in November, my oldest son made the brave and wise decision to enter inpatient rehab to deal with an alcohol addiction, and my younger son married a wonderful woman. Both of these experiences made me feel grateful and blessed. I am happy to say that the oldest son remains sober ten months later and has gained insight in to his own life. The younger son is happy and thriving in his first year of married life. Having my children be happy and more "settled" makes me feel the same.

Fell in love with Allie! She's made me incredibly happy, and incredibly lucky. I'm very grateful.

well... Sept 3 Etnies was put to sleep. It was recent. I have largely ignored it and pretend he is still here and no. I am not really grateful but I am also not feeling too much of anything. It was emotional. He lost control in the last hour and it was very sad and scary. I really have held together mainly and i think I have done well. I recently took a job (i think) doing therapy with horses and animals and think that I will be thankful if it is real. I was applying for months... a year to many jobs in more powerful positions and have decided in a last final moment to try for something new. I will no longer be in a position to feel so much stress but will not be in the middle of EVERYTHING any more. There is a chance I will be majorly set back if what I decide is to climb a corporate-ish ladder again but I am relieved and inspired to go for a dream and hope that in some ways it is such! phew... made it in just in time. 11:15pm

I volunteered for a medical research study that focused on behavior modification, I have been successful so far--4 months in maintaining the change of behavior I desired. I am concerned I will regress but happy that I made the commitment. I am inspired to continue onward to my goalwhich has been unattainable for many years.

This year I experience what it was like to be a victim. I was a victim of identity theft. This act was perform against me by a "friend" so I had to overcome betrayed & view my lack of judgment. Overall I am grateful for the experience. It open my eyes to so many things around me. I am still able to receive what is for me regardless of this misdoings. I am still paying off the karma for my part in allowing this to happen. So I am just waiting out my term and trying to remain faithful in God because I know this pebble is a stumble; to get my attention. I did not and will not fall!

Just one week ago my son's leukemia cam back. I am so proud of him, he is so brave. He is in for a rough road ahead. I am thankful for our family and friends for coming together to support him.

I went to visit my grandfather, shortly before he died. It was a long trip, one which is physically painful for me to make. Yet, it was good. Most of the time was spent really caring for my mother, who was having a hard time of it. But, I also got to say goodbye to my grandfather, as well.

both guys were both working. I was doing great at my job. Kids were happy. Mom and I were getting a long. I had tremendous gratefulness and peace of mind. I loved feeling that the world was not on my shoulders. I loved the confidence and security I felt. I felt so generous. I felt like I could be present in a way that I haven't been when I am stressed. I loved watching everyone not struggle. I loved seeing them inspired by what they were doing, having purpose. Taking business. I love the way I felt about My husband being at work and busy. I cherished the time I spent with the kids. I loved the space I had to play mom and be home with him at work. I loved the contrast from the year before - I had certainty and purpose. Life felt precious and beautiful.

I quit my job without having a job lined up, and it was the best decisions I have ever made. I gained a greater appreciation for my time. I gained a greater appreciation for not constantly striving. I gained a greater appreciation for pressing pause on life. I gained a richer sense of who I am outside of work, and a greater appreciation for and interest in who others are outside of work. Now, "What do you do?" is not the first question that I ask when I meet new people, because I know in a very real sense that we are so much more than what we do at work, even if we are incredibly passionate about it. I don't thank God everyday for the opportunity to have my time be all my own, but I should.

My relationship of the past almost six years has been a difficult one as my girlfriend is both an alcoholic and suffering from depression, primarily brought on by abuse and abandonment as a child. A little over a year ago, she finally agreed to seek therapy for her problems, something she has eschewed for a long time. While she was not exactly all in with it, she slowly began to see its worth. Her therapist was trying to give her techniques to help trigger her desire not to drink, but after a few months of therapy (and reduced drinking), she went overseas for a couple of weeks and spent most of the time drunk, and during her time away developed (or, at least, discovered that she had) a blood clot. She began treatment for that and was told to lay off the booze as it had adverse effects. She didn't. At some point, however, she realized (Eureka!) that drinking was not solving any of her problems, and decided that (after making plans to attend a bash at her favourite bar) she would go into rehab. A week or so before the party, however, she blacked out at work while she was outside smoking a cigarette. She hid her head and shoulder on the pavement and was rushed to emergency, where she spent over twelve hours. When she went to the workman's comp doctor a couple of days later (she would not be allowed to return to work without his go-ahead), she got the advice to go into rehab immediately, as it would give her wounds (an enormous bump on the head, black eyes, bruised shoulder) the time to heal in addition to getting the alcohol treatment. She spent three months in rehab. After the first month, it became clear to her that her disease was physical, that she would not be able to drink again after a prolonged period. She has not had a drink since (it will be a year on the first of October). A problem, however, is that she had inadvertently left bottle of kombucha at work, which have trace amounts of alcohol in them. After returning to work, she was confronted with the bottles and upon admitting that they were hers and that she knew that they contained alcohol, she was fired. From s a job she'd had for eight years, with outstanding annual reviews. For me, of course, I'm grateful that she finally admitted that what she was doing to herself was also hurting our relationship. I still have moments in which I doubt that she's remaining sober, but those moments are fleeting. Still, despite that she has made these great strides, she has not worked since January, which in and of itself isn't such a problem as I've finally begun to get traction with my work, but she stays up late and sleeps until the afternoon, then expects attention when she does finally wake up. She has virtually no physical activity beyond going to her therapists throughout the week and going to an occasional group meeting. She is currently researching going back to school, but the loan process has got her down. I'm hoping, however, that she won't be so deflated by the lack of financial aid she's likely to get that she gives up on it. So much is wait and see at the moment.

The death of my beloved grandmother Lillian aka "Pinky". She was sharp as a tack and enjoying life when a bellyache took her to the doctors. At 88 and in otherwise decent health, she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Well that wasn't what anyone expected is it?? - she asked. But we stood by her and all her wishes to remain at home and enjoy her garden and family until just 4 short months later she was taken from us. I went through all the emotions and still get choked up even typing these words, but she inspires me to live life to the fullest.

My mom's falling in the living room and gashing her head when I was in the next room. I let out a big scream and ran over to attend to her. After the paramedics arrived, a visit to the ER, and some stitches later, she turned out OK. My mom's disease and its progression is heartbreaking. She is my angel. The sweetest person I've ever known. If anyone deserves than this, it is her. She remains an inspiration throughout her illness--always loving, always warm, always smiling, always her sweet caring self. I walked away from the moment even more cognizant of my mom's (and ultimately my) mortality and got extra motivation to make sure she is always getting the best care and love (including from me) and to spend as much quality time as I can with her and all of my loved ones. In a sense, it put my priorities in order and one of my intentions for this year is to focus on my true priorities while spending less time on the "noise."

I became the matriarch. I am grateful and feel responsible for making a contribution.

i discovered embroidery. something that i took to effortlessly. i had never done something before that i was instantly good at, or had a natural talent for. I'm intensely proud of myself.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year is going to Israel. My whole family went for my brother's bar-mitzvah. It was so much fun and interesting to learn about. Israel has shown me how proud and honored I should be by being a jew. They are so proud of who they are and it is very inspiring. To see how I share my religion with such amazing people. I am very grateful to have had this amazing experience. I greatly appreciate the hard work and effort that was put into this trip. Israel is so beautiful, unique, different, and inspiring. This trip for sure has made a difference on how I view my religion. I am very lucky and happpy that I got to experience such an amazing place like Israel.

My father passed away. I have been affected in every way that a person could possibly be affected; it's the thing that colors every moment of my life. My Dad is here, and yet he is not here. He is gone, and yet he is absolutely everywhere. Sometimes I wonder if someone else in my position-- someone who has been with a sick parent-- would be relieved. But I am anything but relieved. What is the opposite of relief? How I feel every moment. How absolutely indescribable it has been to live the moment when my father's heart stopped, but mine kept beating. And ever moment since has been equally difficult, in an ever-growing, ever-evolving way. I often think to myself that I miss him more and more every single day. There is no other way to say it: I miss my father in a way that is astonishing. It actually astonishes me. I read somewhere that nobody tells anybody how much grief feels like fear, and that really resonates with me. I feel scared all the time. Scared and homesick. Most days I feel like I did as a young girl at camp, missing my home, and feeling vulnerable and indescribably sad-- feeling an aching sensation that overwhelms me so much at moments, that the very act of continuing on into my day feels like an act of incredible bravery. I walk around feeling broken and isolated. I miss you and I love you, Daddy. Every minute of every day. Forever. To live a life that is big and beautiful and meaningful and profound- all in your honor as I know you want me to do-- that is my mission.

I traveled to Turkey and Greece for the first time. It was a beautiful time to connect with the cultures, the sights and even old friends. I feel incredibly lucky to have been able to experience it.

I started graduate school. It's turned my life upside down. I don't doubt my decision to go - I know it was the right thing to do. It's challenging me in ways I didn't know were possible. I can do the work, but I am challenging myself to do the hard social work that comes with this program - networking and making new connections. Doing this is painfully difficult for me. I have to step out of my shell and have confidence in myself, trust myself. I am good enough to be here. I am not my past. I am my present and my future.

I had to put the dog to sleep. I am saddened by it. I miss my dog. I wish I had invested more time in him. It was a difficult thing to do, to let him die in my arms. After he was gone, I swadled him like I did my daughter when she was a baby. And I left him on there on the table.

This summer I had the opportunity to go on the exchange program to France for three weeks. Prior to our departure, we hosted students from the school we would be visiting. This would be my first time hosting an exchange student, and it was exactly as I hoped. I was able to show her things we see and do every day that she said they never have in France, which amazed me. Being able to show her around actually showed me a few new things, since much of what we did, such as visiting the aquarium and going around different parts of Boston, were things I don’t do on a regular basis. My experience during the home part of this exchange made me see how enjoyable it is to show someone Boston and the personality it has. The second part of this trip was definitely the more impactful of the two. The things we visited and did were experiences that a majority of people never have the opportunity to do. Places such as the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower are such huge landmarks in France, and to be able to see them at my age makes me realize the opportunities this school supplies to the students. The part of the trip that I felt the most was the visit to Normandy beach and the American cemetery. Just thinking about the chilling feeling of seeing the place where so many people died on D-day still makes for a somber moment. The mood during this part was greatly different from the usual jovial mood we carried with us. The impact from this carries over to my World War 2 class, since I will have seen where the carnage from that infamous day took place, and the location where those whose bodies were found are buried. This experience is part of the reason why I want to go to West Point and be able to relate to the struggles these men had at such early stages in their lives.

I became an Uber driver. I did not realize how much anxiety I have. I was so focused on trying to find my rider one night that I turned down a one way street going the wrong way. I guess in a way I am grateful, because I never realized or allow myself to see how I really feel. I think I will be relieved when I find something that is more in line with my purpose for being here. I think deep down I am resentful because I just can't find what it is that I am suppose to be doing. No I can't say that I am inspired. I would like to be inspired, I am tired of bumbling around.

I had to end a few friendships. Although I dreaded it and was afraid of what kind of consequences there would be, it actually was the most freeing feeling! I knew I was unhappy but I had not realized the extent of how I had been affected. Afterwards I was so much happier.

I came to terms with my own mortality and with the importance of taking risks with an overwhelming chance of not dying. I am relieved. I don't have to be perfect.

My sister's death. It was completely devastating and heartbreaking and my heart still hurts thinking she's not here with us. It has made me question everything about life and what it's about and why we're here. Even though I believe death is just another transition and our spirit lives on, I don't know if I will ever stop hurting when I think of her. My emotions have run the gamut from resentment to losing her and appreciation for the miracle of life. Her passing has made me grateful for each day and appreciate the ephemeral nature of all things.

I had cataract surgery in March. It was not as big a deal as I first thought. But my eyes are very important to me and I am very grateful that they could be fixed so easily, painlessly and, because I have insurance, it was affordable.

I got another new job: the last one had poor management and was eating up at me. I couldn't handle staying there, so I just kind of randomly started looking for other jobs and happened to find a wonderful, easy, fun job literally right across from my apartment with a wonderful boss and great co-workers. I'm so much happier!! Plus, they're more than willing to work with my grad school schedule, so even better :D

This past year I moved in with my girlfriend, and it opened up a whole slew of issues, new expectations, and pleasant surprises that completely shifted our thinking about our relationship. We came face to face with each other's individual routines, eccentricities, and true characters and we had to somehow find a way to adjust to all the newness we were experiencing with someone we felt we already knew so well. It was a challenging and fascinating experience that really challenged me in my thinking and my behavior. I am inspired to see where this takes me... living with a partner is the truest way to answer some fundamental compatibility questions, and I'm making no assumptions about where this will lead us. Obviously, I adore her and think the world of her. I'd love to spend the rest of my life with her. But again, no assumptions. Let's see where we are a year from now.

I was in the Philippines for 18 days in Jan-February, 2015. Although the trip was initially planned as a sight-seeing vacation, with a local guide that we knew from the United States, it turned out very differently. Basically, we were either ignored for hours or abandoned altogether by our friend, a Filipino. A few times we were told who our friend was going to see, but we never knew where she was going, and there was no communication from her during the day she was gone. We felt frustrated, angry, resentful, and wondered, what the hell was going on? We were relieved when we finally got back to the US. My sister was sick off and on the entire trip...I got very sick the last three days of the trip. I drank coffee on the plane ride back home so that I had enough caffeine in me that I could fake feeling ok, because I was scared I would not be allowed back in the US sick. My doctor put me on anti-biotics, and it took me almost two months before I was back to normal health. During those two months, I had no energy, I was not hungry, I simply ran out of motivation, and eating did not make me feel good. Luckily for me, my blood tests came back clear and I had no lingering health consequences due to the trip. I decided that since my blood was clear, no organ problems, no diabetes, no high cholesterol etc, that this was an opportunity to make sure that I remained healthy. I had never been sick like this before this trip and I do not EVER want to be sick like that again and have no idea what is wrong!. I changed my eating habits. I cut out all food with sugar, all processed food. I now eat food that has mainly one ingredients, sometimes two or three. I choose to eat the most nutritious food that I can find. I sleep more soundly, I get my energy from food, I have lost weight without trying, my friends say that I have a "glow", my skin is clear, with no health problems. I practice yoga and meditation daily. For three months, it was horrible. I was frustrated, resentful, angry, emotionally exhausted and tired. From this horrible experience, I cam out grateful for my health, and am inspired to make more life changes. I believe that life is random, and changes comes because of energy we attract from the universe. This experience continues to inspire me to go forward with life.

We won several million dollars in the lottery. I am grateful, because c'mon. I am relieved because I thought I was going to die at my desk. I am inspired because it's not total go crazy money, but it is the gift of time. I can't do nothing, but I can do almost anything.

I had so many significant experiences this past year. The main one might be finishing my bachelor's of science in nursing. I took courses while working full time as a nurse for almost two years, then cut back my hours at work while taking more courses in school. I worked basically seven days a week on school or in the hospital. I even failed a class and had to re-take it, with no more chances for mistakes. So I felt incredibly relieved when I finished my BS. And proud of my hard work, and tired. I also started dating someone for the first time in a couple years, and that's going well and I like him a lot. Also, once I finished school, I got a new job in a pediatric intensive care unit, and the training is kicking my butt but I am learning a lot and I can definitely say I love this area of medicine. I feel very grateful for my life, my family, and the opportunities for success I have received.

I fell in love. I fell in love and opened my heart to a new family member who has changed the way I view the entire world. His presence has invited me to dream again and to resume building a world in which the impossible seems probable. I am grateful that this love has brought me here, to this new place which I never knew existed. I imagined it did, I hoped it did. But, eventually, I presumed that everyone who purported to reside there was entirely making it up, putting on airs to impress the emotionally intelligent. Instead I've found myself here through my effort (all my own to open my heart) and his devotion (a practice of patience and love) and I am entirely invigorated.

I broke up with someone who was toxic to me (after so much hymming and hawing--even a year ago!). I played the field for a little bit because I know that's important, and knew more than ever what I wanted. I also met someone really special. Here's our meet-cute: I was going to pick up Suzie (my dad's cousin) and her daughter and baby to go to Sunday dinner. THye had just gone to a ladies retreat in Sonoma at this family's house. Katie was taking forever to get her stuff so the dad came out and talked to me. And the mom, and Suzie. They were gracious, funny parents. I also had a pick up truck in tow, which the dad ended up helping me fix during all of this (the theft lock was on). Eventually Suzie said--"Oh! Well they have a son--he's about your age--you should meet! After which the dad immediately started qualifying me as a lead. How old are you? What do you do? Where did you go to school? All of it. I asked if he was Jewish, he said "half" and I said great, me too. Then he sold him HARD. Also took a pic of me and Suzie and made a pic stitch of the two of us. That'll be the save the date. Anyway, I stalked him on FB, we had friends in common, we met up during day time, got an arnold palmer and watched the roller skate party that happens in GG park on Sundays. It was great. The humor, the story, the conversation, all of it's there. Timeline: March 22--met the parents March 29--met Sam June 25--DTR, initiated by moi (with some indications from him before, to which I said let's talk after Miami, because I needed to be with my UBER WENCH (Jeffrey) September 11--L words exchanged initiated by Shamana This relationship has been the loveliest. We've taken things slowly for me. So my state of being is grateful and inspired. I'm so grateful that this wonderful human being just sort of fell into my lap, and with Sam I'm inspired to be a good girlfriend/person/family member. I'm in love with him, with no reservation. Or maybe 2: he drinks more redbull than is healthy, and neither of us are good at directions--which could be a real disaster. :) We just need a nice, strong, practically skilled couple to carry us around. Problem. Solved.

I starting practicing loving more fully without attachment to the outcome (i.e. without expecting some kind of reciprocity). I am more conscious now of when I bring expectations into relationships with others. I brought myself to this practice by having feelings for a man who was not free to love me back. In my desire to work on my personal coaching program - this experience of feeling fully and letting go of outcome seemed to be a fit. It has been both difficult and opening. Difficult because, like attention in meditation, I have to repeatedly bring myself back to non attachment, subject to fantasies of reciprocity that is not true or real. As I condition myself to turn less and less to comforting fantasies, I open up capacity just to be there with what is there. Even when taken with feelings of extreme loneliness - the difficult summer of my Mom's illness has been very lonely with no strong shoulder to turn to. It feels like learning to hold a different stance with the uncertainty in the moment. Feels shaky, awful and opening.

I started taking hydrocodone and became pain free. After 2 months I continue to take only half of the prescribed dose and hope this continues because I do not want to become addicted. Many days I do not take even that much. I have a brighter outlook on life, increased energy, and restored faith in God. I am so grateful to be free of pain. Though I did not say much to many people, I had continued to be in pain most of the time, often staggering. Now I feel more inspired in my mission for God with our joint venture in the store where we reach out to people who are often not in a church. To God be the Glory.

Breaking my ankle while hiking in Alaska has been a pivotal experience in my life this past year. There are lessons in everything we face and I have faced many as I sit and heal. First was the lack of panic the moment I broke my ankle. No tears, no fear...just a calm "giving up". I turned over all control to those who were there to help...and that was magical. So many faces, so many volunteers, so many good people got me off of that mountain. The experience, however bad due to the injury, was wonderful. I'll be forever grateful for everyone who helped me...and those who continue to do so. I'm inspired to keep my meditation practice going and to help others facing similar injuries to take charge of their recovery and end up better than before. I feel I am stronger and will continue to grow spiritually and emotionally as I heal. There is so much to more to learn and I am grateful for the opportunity,

I met Joel. I am so grateful for him. He's amazing. Relieved that I actually met someone who I can spend lots of time with. Inspired by his support and love for me. Not resentful.

My daughter left college,and left home to live on her own. After I found out that she failed every single class in college, she did not wanted nobody to tell her what to do anymore. She insulted me with horrible words,before she left. She didn't talk to me for a long while. She had a boyfriend non-Jewish, and from a very racist family, I told my daughter before she left about the family of her boyfriend, she ignored me. She got pregnant later and of course I got devastated for the second time. But when she got pregnant my daughter started to get closer, and closer to me,calling me every day for advice, she is not talking bad to me. She also told me how the parents of here boyfriend are mistreat her because she is Jewish . I'm grateful that we are closer,after all she admits that sometimes her mother is right.

I worked for a company that turned out to be crooked. They lied cheated and stole. They hurt my business and my name. What I lost is unmeasurable. I am so shocked at how greedy and manipulative they were. I can't believe I didn't trust my gut when things didn't feel right. Why did I let this happen? I feel stupid and used. I don't know how I could have let that happen.

I ran a really comfortable Two Oceans Half and then after that got injured. It was really depressing for me as I was on such a good trajectory with my running. I'm still in rehab and just hoping I'll be able to run like that again.

Loss of job due to layoff. I was expecting it but am not happy about it. A lot of fear and anxiety about what the future will hold, lifestyle changing dramatically, my ability to "get back on the horse" after having not worked in several months. Feelings of aging, not being relevant, not being wanted in the workplace and not any of it being important anyway given the collapse of the oil industry.

The most significant event this past year has been getting married. The relationship began in Nov and I have never been happier. The engagement was a total surprise and I was ecstatic. We were married in June and our relationship inspires me to be the best me I can. I love my husband and our life and my new family so much. It brought me such joy to cook Rosh Hashana dinner for my husband and 4 stepsons and to have my brother at our table. It was also such a joy to go to synagogue at a place where I am a member and am known. I have not had this feeling of home in a very long time.

In May, my dad died. And honestly I don't know how I feel. Back over the summer it was mainly indifference. Keeping busy so I wouldn't have to think about it. But then it became 2 months, and then 3, and now almost 4. And the feeling moves more toward sadness, but in a not so sad way. Sure, I'm sad he's not here, but it's more something I think about all the time. Something that plagues my thoughts and won't stay out of my head. Every time I mention him, or when I talk to my friends who know what happened. It's weird thinking I won't talk to him again, or that I can't ask him a question about a tv show, or tell him something that happened at school. It's not sadness, it's weirdness. I don't feel depressed that he's gone. I feel nervous and anxious. I want to cry, but I can't. I don't. I won't. It's been 3.5 months and honestly, I still don't know what to feel.

Nate and my trip to England was a pretty significant experience! I am so grateful that we were able to go. It took so much work on Nate's part and cost so much money but it was absolutely worth it. The best thing about our trip was not being in England, it was how much closer we became as a couple. Everything that could possibly go wrong went wrong on our vacation - we missed two flights (including one that meant we missed an entire excursion to Iceland), I broke my toe the night before we left, we found out at the last second we couldn't rent a car and had to revamp our entire schedule... so much went wrong. But Nate and I rolled with the punches and just giggled about all of it. We never once got mad at each other. It was amazing. We bonded so much. I love him so much and our trip showed me just how much Nate means to me. Being in London with Nate was the happiest experience of my entire life. We were in my favorite place, and I was with my favorite person. It was an unbelievably amazing experience.

A significant experience has been a reconnection with someone I've known for half my lifetime, with whom I've had a longstanding and intense mutual connection and attraction. I thought we'd never see each other again, but we did, after nearly seven years. And it seems to have kindled into a lovely romance, and that has had an effect already (it's quite new): it's given me hope, worked against my own cynicism, and reconnected me to the romantic bits that I thought I'd lost. And that, really, is all about just saying that I can change, people can change, and that life is full of vicissitudes and completely unknowable, and that there is goodness in most unexpected places. That makes me feel grateful and, I think, relieved.

I am grateful for, encouraged by my invitation to spend a night in air conditioning at the Poodles that turned into 3 days and nights of a total pleasure. Lovely home with lovely wonderful Lynn and Eliot and two poodles who slept and cuddled with me each night. They followed me everywhere the whole long weekend. When I was packing up my stuff, they went to hang with Lynn on her bed, as usual. They're so great! I am encouraged to be myself, be positive by seeing that reflected and experienced. What a blessing!

So many negative “significant events” have happened in my life thus far, that only the positive events right now are coming to mind. This past year (to the date), I’m celebrating the one-year anniversary of having a steady roof over my head; this New Year, being accepted into college on a full tuition scholarship is what has become particularly significant. For this, I am grateful and inspired. I have spent the last decade shying around and being incredibly defensive about my lack thereof of a formal education, as being hired into a more prestigious institution created the constant inquiry of “Where did you go to school?” Not having an answer for this has taken most aback for quite some time; personally, I have dreaded networking within social circles because it. Individuals who know me/like me as a person either defended that a college degree “wasn’t necessary,” or told me to find a way back into school. Financially? It was just not an option. Year after year I applied for college and for financial aid; nothing substantial enough came back to make college a reality. In late July, I was notified of a full-tuition scholarship at twenty-eight years old – and the movement that has happened in the last eight weeks with this has been unbelievable. I’ve started school as a full-time student, have my books, and am studying very seriously. I am grateful for this opportunity beyond measure, and each day I’m inspired, even by the small things (i.e., sharpening pencils). Although I am working hard, I’m not focused on the “grades,” but the learning experiences which are in front of me. Right now, I’m not certain how or why this blessing has occurred. All I do know is that G-d doesn’t open doors half way.

Falling in love with Jason has been confusing, humbling, enlivening and illuminating. I have seen more beauty in another person's journey than I thought possible. I have felt more compassion toward myself as a direct result of his love for me. I have seen aspects of myself that are darker and more complex than I ever could have anticipated. It has certainly affected me for life. I have seen what it's like to have intimacy with someone and also try to have your own identity at the same time. I have experienced a hell of a lot with him. My experience of living has taken on more textures and dimension, I will never be the same again.

Traveling to the Ukraine and realizing that the many years I spent learning Russian as a teenager weren't entirely in vain. It felt like reawakening a part of my brain that had been long dormant, an amazing feeling even though I learn new things every day!

Whoo boy. I: -had a relationship end. It was time, but for a little bit I was stressed out. Ironically, not about the relationship ending, but about my social circle. It worked out. At least I hope it did. -Someone very close to me was in the hospital a lot. To be frank, it's made me more somber. I don't laugh as easy. I don't like other people's bullshit as much. This was a year of change. Not the kind I thought it'd be, but change nonetheless. A long time coming.

Going home for Christmas was very significant. Having finally decided that I need to move home for good and face everything that I ran away from, it was a real litmus test to go home for Christmas and be with my family. Going home is full of both hope for healing and the opportunity to become close to my family, and risk in facing the things I ran away from. Christmas was an amazing experience. It was exhausting and it still had its typical moments that show we are still the same people with the same issues. But at the same time, it was a really enjoyable trip where I was able to enjoy being with members of my family and feel relationships where there had never been any before. It cemented my resolve that going home for good is the right thing to do and this is the year to make that happen.

An early relationship broke up because of a lack of fit. Both disappointed and grateful. I had hoped that despite her problems, she and I could be very well suited. I was completely wrong. But I did escape before we got too deep. It also taught me a lot about myself in relationship.

The first think that popped into my mind when I read this question was my leaving JFGS. However, that experience actually pales in significance to my starting OA in December 2014. In the nine-months that I have been practicing the 12-steps I have found myself achieving everything that I've wanted the last x-amount of years but couldn't. I have lost weight and become healthier. And, and more importantly, I have reconnected with HaShem, I connect with people, and I am connected to myself. It is this inner-work that led to the outer changes of leaving a job that was no longer serving me and being open to new opportunities that, in the next year, will no doubt be challenging to me. I find that tonight, on this Ever Rosh HaShanah for 5776 that I feel so grateful. I am relieved and I am inspired.

I got a new teaching position! I'm now teaching SDC AUTISM! Thank you!

My major event 2014 was being fired after spending 18 years with the same company. I said the year before that I felt relief but need to get along well with the new-found freedom. And thats how it continued well into 2015. It was a sometimes difficult path of re-inventing myself. With sometimes full of doubts and sometimes frustration because the job-search was much more difficult than thought. I had to accept that my future might look very different from my path. That the days of paid comfort zone are over and I had to change. Start something new, something adventurous and more risky. But also somthing with higer rewards. Or maybe even more frustration. I learned that everything that happens in life, happens with a (deeper) sense and meaning. You just need to discover it. So i feel mixed, sometimes excited and happy, sometimes still uncertain. It seems to be a long(er) process but I am sure that I will make my way and it will be a good one.

The biggest event was falling out of love with Anaisa. I don't know when did exactly happen, we have problems for a year now. A year that I have been running, anxious, tired, angry, bored. I lost my capactiy to concentrate, I need to be able to have discipline, focus on things and live the present moment, direct my energies towards that, one by one, step by step. Im not asking for balance, that will come eventually or not, I don't exagerate the benefits of it, ist mir egal. But concentration, that I need, I have lost parts of myself this year, I need to pay attention, listen, find the thread. That is the scary part. Lost in, for, out of Love. So many mechanisms and mental structures have been abused, refused, frustrated... I blame and blame and blame... I want to forgive, and forget.

Probably the most significant thing that has happened in the last year happened just two weeks ago when I fell and broke my arm. Like many such accidents, it reminds one of the value of the every day activities. Curling up on the bed, dressing and showering oneself, scrambling an egg, walking the dog suddenly seem like luxuries. To choose just one impact on me is difficult, but if I had to choose, I would choose frustration and gratitude. Frustration over what is not possible, and gratitude for what is possible and for the knowledge that this will heal. In that sense, this was a small price to pay for such awareness.

This year my husband and I were able to take our infant son to meet both of his great grandmothers. We live abroad so we made the priority to travel around the world to make this happen. My husband's grandmother is 95 and my grandmother is 97 (this is her first great grandchild) so this may be his only chance to meet them. I know he will not remember the experience firsthand but hopefully the stories and the photographs from these trips will help him feel connected to his family and the past as he grows old enough to understand.

I won a judgement again someone that wronged me when people said I should let it go. I stood up for myself. I lost a lot of people I thought were friends. It has been an amazing load off & things have begun to fall into place. I have my own business. Things I didn't think were possible bit I shot for are not just possible, they are happening. It's terrifying. Exhilarating. Borderline paralyzing some days. I have to remind myself to not get overwhelmed. The stakes are getting higher. This is living. This is living just a little more alone.

So much death this year. Lou, I was just starting to know. My mom...it's still tough. She was insane. She was awesome. She never took shit from anyone and made sure Davey and I didn't either, or rather tried to. I miss her. More than I thought I would.

I was recently accepted into a choir. The audition was significant because I had a lot of fun during the audition, but I didn't know if the judges liked me enough to admit me. After the audition I analyzed every small detail that took place during the audition and shared it with my closest friends and family members. I was so nervous and scared of the unknown. I tried putting it all into perspective but I couldn't shake the feeling that there was a big chance that I could be rejected. I felt extremely vulnerable and emotional, and the audition brought back old memories of earlier auditions. I would attribute most of my joy during college to my involvement in an a cappella group. I had been searching for a community that could bring me as much joy (or close to it) in the city that I now live in, but it took me a while to actually start putting myself out there. I have found something that I hope will bring me something similar to what I enjoyed for four years. Singing is my passion and I don't want to lose it. I am excited for what lies ahead, and I hope I continue to grow and gain more confidence during my first season in the choir.

I gave birth to my son in May this year. I was scared to meet him because I suffered through such physical and emotional upheaval during most of the pregnancy. I took that as signs that maybe he would be difficult or more difficult to love than my 2 1/2 year old daughter. But he has been a sweet, peaceful, gentle baby who is often the easiest part of my day, due to the fact that he just eats and sleeps! I love how much he smiles and how patient he seems at just 4 months old. He makes me want to be more patient. In some ways, I have already started to be more patient. I also struggled with a particularly bad episode of anxiety and depression that lead me to a few therapists who ultimately weren't the right fit. I decided not to go back on meds while breastfeeding. This time last year I was grateful for lexapro but the withdrawal from it was so terrible. I'm no longer working and that has helped my stress level but I also must work to just accept the frustrating moments of rearing a toddler and living with others. When I relinquish control, I feel better. But my first instinct is always control.

I decided to resign my job without anything to go to. It has put me under financial; pressure but it has also saved my life. The stress was getting to me. I do resent the fact that the person mostly responsible seems to have no idea of the damage he is doing/.

My divorce was finalised last November. At the time I felt sad, a bit of a failure, and I guess somewhat relieved. Now, I still feel sad that my marriage ended and I couldn't make it work, but I am trying to see it as a chapter in my life that was actually mostly lovely, happy, and full of great memories.

What a year..!!! Laura appeared in my life. This beautiful soul from water;) 2months later she's pregnant. Our son is due in December. We are both going through huge changes inside, Laura is changing outside too. Son has a heart defect and will have operation once his born. I am grateful for these experiences. It kinda gives a purpose, there's almost a time limit to do something, to improve life. Yes there is some stugle, but we're going through it together. It was so awesome to meet Laura and feel that we both speak the same language. We're going through big changes in life and we are still happy to try for baby. Didn't have to try long;) it is all real now. We will have a son in less than 3months time. And that is really something to be grateful for. I really like the way we communicate with Laura, the way we support each other and give each other space to fight our demons. It is beautiful when 2people trust, respect and are working towards same/similar purpose.

I am so grateful to have completed my VI studies, though now the real work of the Kingdom begins as I seek to know and do His will in this new season. Honestly, the gift my husband has given me to explore my calling and be in ministry is a freedom beyond measure. So grateful!

I have become more aware of my parents' stage in life and how that affects our relationship. In so doing, I am able to grieve a bit less and accept the situation for what it is -- a normal part of the process. I am able to love them more than ever and to forgive them for past traumas and transgressions. I choose to focus on the good times and the good memories and attempt to expand on those. I am grateful for each moment that I have them.

I fell in love with the man that I'm going to marry. My whole life changed. I had known since Tisha Ba'av that he was meant to be in my life forever, but it wasn't until a heart break right around Yom Kippur that I was able to truly open my heart up to him. It made me inspired and scared and anxious and excited and relieved and so much more bi remember the night I realized and I cried for so long for so many reasons that I couldn't explain and he just sat there with me and held me when I asked and was so comforting and respectful. He is a part of my life now that is never going away. It's only been nine months since we have been together (and most of that was long distance) but it feels like forever. What will forever feel like?

My youngest child has started school. I am relieved to gain some time for myself, something I longed for since she was born. At the same time I am sad that a period of my life with young children at home, and in retrospect with so many moments of small happiness, is over now. And I truly regret not being there more for her in the last year or so that she was at home on the days that she wasn't in the day care, because so many times I had to keep her busy with something else so I could do some urgent work.

In the past year I fell in love. And I fell in love with this absolutely great guy. When you first see him he looks like a tough guy who easily blocks you off with a quick remark. And he is. But he is so much more. I quickly fell in love, despite all my morals. You see, my great girl friend liked him a lot and spend a lot of time with him. I didn't want to get in the way of it. But then I met him and I tried to keep my distance, but I couldn't. Something just pulled me toward him. Now we're together, spending as much time together as we can. I have grown so much in the past year because of him.

I started a new job after being unemployed for three years. It's been a wild ride. I'm both grateful and relieved, but also rather troubled by a couple of people in the organization that I can't avoid. I need to commit to myself to make a positive change, get my poop together, and update my CV. Why do I find this so difficult?

Recently, I applied to transfer out of the former college I was attending for the past two years. All of the schools I wanted to transfer into rejected, save for the one school I considered the safety. This devastated me. For the most part, I value my worth/intelligence/anything and everything passed off of any type of measurable test or feat. Being rejected from all these schools solidified my already dismal view of self-worth.

I turned 50 this year and spent the year leading up to it enjoying 50 plus meaningful experiences to commemorate this milestone. It was all about building relationships, taking me out of my comfort zone at times and punctuating how precious life is and how we must enjoy every moment. I am so grateful, blessed and inspired to live the life I have and thank the many people who are part of my life for sharing these moments with me. It is a year I will always cherish as one of the most meaningful in my life.

My first trip outside North America, and my first adventure by myself (to Costa Rica). At first, through tiredness and shyness, I retreated into myself. But after some sleep and realizing my inner strength, I'm forever grateful for teaching myself how resilient I am. I had an incredible solo journey, and I met new people along the way. I'm inspired to continue these bold trips.

I re-qualified and went back to a job I really like doing. I give financial advice and I am inspired by the clients I deal with and honoured by their trust.

I had my first exchange. It triggered my second depression this year. I felt grateful that I visited to California, but this journey also gave me the sense of loneliness and questions about the meaning of life.

My wonderful husband took me on a dream vacation to Europe which made me feel more ready to have children and helped me realize how much he truly loves me. I'm grateful for the experience and my partner in life.

My mom sold the house I grew up in a few months ago. I am relieved that she won't have to deal with yard work, shoveling, upkeep of the house. Grateful that she has something fun to focus on. It's a great way to start a new chapter. I'm happy that the transaction was pleasant and the person who moved in is really excited. But part of me is sad too. I don't think it's really hit home that we never get to go back to the house. It already looks different.

My husband died. It was devastating to my family as he was so beloved. We have always been close and we banded together to survive this tragedy. We have leaned on and supported each other with great love during this time. It has made us even stronger as a family unit. We are better, but there is still such a huge hole in our family. We miss our sweet husband and father every day.

Our son went off to college, and I had the opportunity to put myself first and figure out what I was made of. The first time, I wasn't taking care of someone in over 20 years. I was and am grateful for the experience, and optimistic towards learning and growing. My wife who had been commuting and working out of state for 3 years, came back home to start a fantastic new job in SF. The experience has been so positive and supportive for both of us, getting used to living 24/7 again. we are true soulmates, but still have individual streaks that make our relationship so deep and rewarding

Accepted the fact that I most likely won't have kids. It was heartbreaking, but it's reminded me to hug my partner more, and to really connect with my goddaughter (in another country), and those kids of friends.

I realized that love is not enough. That after years and years of unconditional love and kindness that sometimes it isn't enough and you still have to let go. It's heartbreaking. I am resentful. And sad. Mostly sad. And relieved that I came to this conclusion and hoping to leave the resentment and anger behind in 5775 and move forward with a new normal in 5776.

For me it was not so much an event but a growing realisation that I need to spend time deliberate time determining or affirming my purpose on this planet. This is because I was really feeling that I am being pulled to certain things and some of them have come back after I felt that the call had gone some years ago. One of the things just seemed to be falling into place without me having to do much almost as if it was pre-ordained. My view more and more is that this is part of God's plan for me on this earth and that God has planned various experiences in my past so that I am able and prepared for the mammoth responsibility planned for me. This series series of unfolding events has blown my mind on some occasions but it has also given me an awe inspiring sense of responsibility. I am humbled, grateful that my experience and choices have been part of a plan that is for the benefit of greater than myself

I have made my aging, widowed father a priority and spend lots of time with him, helping him with things he can no longer do, helping with medical care, and keeping him company. I am grateful for the time together.

My husband was in the ICU, sedated and attached to a ventilator this year. For 48 hours, I was unable to think beyond survival mode: feed our child, find her adult supervision, stumble through work, hold his hand. It was the hardest medical issue I've ever dealt with, and we've seen a lot around here. It made me realize that life might not be easier if he died; I still want him around.

Surrendering myself to HaShem's will and NOT mine. I am eternally grateful for the Peace, the shalom, that he has given me. The anxiety that I have had for years has been lifted off my shoulders in so many ways

I am inspired by travelling to Lithuania. Hope to go there once again. And I am grateful to my friends for the nice trip :*

Another chance to see the world. An opportunity to learn and experience alternative spirituality from multiple locals. The majority of the world is civilized.

Our community suffered a great flood last Spring Memorial Day weekend. Thousands of people were affected, and our community came together to bring food, water, and supplies to homes who needed them. Watching the coverage on TV I felt overwhelmed by the devastation. I was grateful to be able to volunteer time and resources to the community. It felt great to see so many people coming together to help. But it was so profoundly sad to see how many people in our community were affected.

Oh yes it was significant! After 12 years we found a place to live, a bigger appartment that we could afford!

My 15yo daughter needed a ride to and from her camp staff job this summer, 75 minutes each way, twice a weekend. Rather than dread it or be resentful of the inconvenience, we spent the time together, sometimes talking, sometimes asking/answering questions, sometime looking out the window at the rain, the trees, the countryside. I got to know this new creature this summer in ways I'd never even hoped for.

Dating. Lots and lots of dating. And confusion and emotional hurt surrounding said dating experiences. I am grateful for the experiences as much as they are a challenge in that life is (in part) about living through these things and hopefully learning from them and changing and growing for the better. I'm currently very included (inspired?) to not date forna while (seek out dating anyway-- no dating sites) and focus on my own acceptance.

I went to the Baltics independently and met some wonderful, warm-hearted people. I felt rejuvenated, going to a festival on a whim, and I felt like a care-free youth! I moved into Moishe House, and I feel like a part of something important, a wonderful inclusive community, and I feel privileged, passionate and excited about being part of its continuity. I have made some special friends which I am grateful for. Ali and I broke up, and I feel content that we are special friends who understand each other.

I was forced out of my job in a botched attempt by them to get rid of me before I had been there for 2 years. Although I was planning to leave, the whole process and the way it was managed was extremely stressful. On reflection, I think this was because I didn't feel in control. I wasn't doing things on my terms. However, I am so glad it happened when it did. It meant that I had the opportunity to spend the summer at home with my children. It also meant that I had to decide what i really wanted from my career. So I am now in the process of sitting up a business with an old colleague. It's really exciting because I know we are going to create a fantastic business with the right ethics and ethos.

6 months ago, I tried my hardest to save a company that was not going to work from the very beginning, and was by some miracle granted a new start after having to let it go. It was really significant because besides being traumatic and confrontational, I was able to stand up and say 'no more' and realise that what I was saying made sense, despite a group of elders saying it wasn't. After we were offered to buy the company back, and Francesca and I thought long and hard whether we wanted to do this. We spent 2 months deciding what the best direction for the company was, and decided to try again with more power and strategy. My feelings are polar opposites: I am relieved, but I am anxious, I am hopeful but I am pessimistic, I am excited but I am cautious. This balancing act seems like a very healthy start to a newly revived business and I feel much more level-headed as a result. Moreover, I have discovered the strength of my partners around me and very happy to have their support through thick and thin.

I was very very sick for a few months. I makes me really appreciate when I feel well. That I have the money to get tests to help me get better. As well as the capacity to learn to help myself. I have used this experience to learn more to help others.

The Syrian refugee crisis has shined a light on just how despicable not just the government of this country is but the people as well. I don't think I've seen a worse knee-jerk reaction to anything than the way the Saudis have reacted to the negative publicity from their lack of action...

I lost two of my friends. One died of cancer. What was most upsetting was I had not stayed in touch with her. When she was first diagnosed 7 years ago I flew from CA to NYC for a week to be with her and support her in any way I could. We stayed in touch on FB and I watched her get better. She hated when people phoned her to ask how she was doing. Didn't want to talk about her health. Over the years I was so happy to see posts about her salsa and tango dancing and assumed she was OK. I didn't notice that she stopped posting 4 or 5 months before she died. Then one day someone announced on her wall that she had died. Hardly anyone knew she was sick again!!!!!! I felt like a bad friend, that I was no longer one of her most trusted pals. I vowed to be in closer touch with my old friends. She was a really lovely woman but the world outside her friends didn't end. But then a game changing death occurred when my friend of almost 40 years was killed in a car accident. Dr. Nancy Sullivan was one of only 3 sheros in my life!!!! Born in Scarsdale and going on to Princeton, where we met, she became an artist of note then got her Doctorate in Anthropology and spent over 25 years in Papua New Guniea protecting some of the oldest cave art in the world from powerful mining interests. She "adopted" scads of children and saved the sight of a kid who the PNG doctors said couldn't be helped. I always thought she would be killed over there but as our mutual friend said at her memorial service on Saturday night, Westchester County got her when she fell asleep at the wheel and crashed after traveling 30 hours with 3 children. My heart is crushed by the weight of her loss!!!!! The "primitive " people who live in these caves and have had so little contact with the outside world have lost their fearless and powerful protector. The fate of the many children whom she housed and paid school fees have a questionable future. Will the 2 still in the rehab center recover? Can we keep them in the states and make sure they have good educations? Will the older children back in PNG have the emotional strength to carry on their studies without mama Nancy's guiding hand? I have taken on the oldest girl. The last thing Nancy did before she left for the US was to register her in college and pay her fees. I will pay for the next 3 1/2 years of tuition and dorm fees. I want to do whatever I can to make sure her life's work is protected. This has been a devastating loss to not just her friends but to the world. Yet murderers and those who destroy the world thrive. Where is the Justice in this world?

I broke my foot last year in October on our trip in Tuscany. I was not allowed to put pressure on it for 6 weeks which was very hard with a little kid. Thank God I had a lot of help from people, even though my mother was in the States all this time. It was a big lesson for me to be dependent on everybody and to loose control of what I could do all by myself. Looking at it now I needed this lesson in order to slow me down and teach me what is really important and learning to focus again. I am very grateful for this experience and all the positive aftermath.

Got my license - June 15, 2015 on Mom and Dad's 12th wedding anniversary I got it two days after I became eligible, my driving teacher was so surprised usually people have to wait 2 months or more to get their license. Went to Disney World - January 11-16 2015, we went everywhere Universal, Disney, Target so so many places. We had a great time, I have never seen my Dad at peace with life. Billy and Renee left to become lead Pastors in CT - Billy and Renee found out at youth convention that the promotion God was making for them was to become lead pastors in CT. They told me a day before they told the whole youth and that they were leaving before the end of July or later, I thought it was about worship team but instead it was about them leaving, they encouraged me that I could one day lead worship team, that God is doing amazing things through me and it doesn't have to stop with them leaving.. Their last night there at youth they announced that Jesse and Sarah will be taking over, and that has begun since the first week of August and they have been such a blessing since. I got over the Corey and Sidney saga - I hit a point when I realized that it's been two years, if God wants me to be with Corey (which I still have mixed feelings about) then he will make a way, I found out that Sidney is moving to Georgia when she graduates from MT and Corey is planning to stay here, so if God has Corey and I reconnect...Sometimes I am so sure that we will be together but lately I just want to enjoy what time I have left being single and be ready to be with the one God has set for me I made friends with Sidney we are now best friends- It started at the beginning of when Sarah and Jesse took over and they had the first youth game night since Billy and Renee left. I got Emily C to come to youth and she and Sidney were hanging out and I believe Justin Mclaister and I were flirting that night on Snapchat (which I deleted along w/ Instagram last night) and that was 43 days ago, (Sidney and I had a snapchat streak for however many days after) we snapchatted so much that we started facetiming, and then we finally hungout for the first time, she opened up about her relationship with Corey and we got really close but even though we aren't always talking we are still definitely close even now during school. I went to my first ever camp for two weeks - I became an LIT for the first time and the first week I met Mike... we texted for three days but he lives in CT (alot of people i care about are moving to CT or live there) and then I liked being an LIT so much I signed up that thursday for the next week of Senior High camp when I was a camper myself. The first night was so powerful I knew I was supposed to be there but ever since that first night I found that the other nights I couldn't connect at all.. I was really concerned about my worship for a while after but I think I am finally pulling out of it. Second job at McDonald's - I got hired July 31, 2015 I found that with Car insurance, and new bills I will be taking on if I get a car (God willing) that I will need another job because working at Staci's is only 1 day a week and McDonald's starts at $10 compared to minimum of $9, so I mean it was a no brainer when they hired me, at first I was concerned it would be to much but the second to last week of August Staci told me that she was planning to close Hop on In, so my mom and I definitely knew that God had my back in giving me the new job with better hours, better pay, and better work environment and to be honest I felt for a while that my time was done with Staci so that definitely confirmed it, one more thing: uniforms at McDonald's can take a while to come in...mine came in the day I was done my training sims...So I got to go on the floor that following friday after all my training on the computer was complete, my boss was surprised that they came in so fast. I had alot of confirmation with McDonald's and I think that I am definitely going to be a witness to them as I have been in the past with Staci's.

Again, I read this question as "what is the most significant experience" and thought, "How do I choose that?". It seems I may have a lesson to learn about myself in this reading and answering. I won't digress here, but will move that thought to dangerousopportunity.wordpress.com for future examination. Turning down Johns Hopkins and accepting entry to a doctoral program in the Department of Public Health at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville was a truly significant event. It was the first step in a chain that led to me sitting on a TN porch this Rosh Hashanah and spiritually readying myself to visit a new shul. When I think of the significance of the event, though the move to TN and entry into a PhD program has turned my world and life in a completely new direction, I don't think of the move. I don't think of the work and study I'm currently completing. I think of the choice to decline Hopkins. Hopkins is the number one public health program in the country. It is impressive. It is known. If you have Hopkins on your resume, then you're guaranteed to impress. People will look at your resume. You're one of a select few - the best and brightest. And yet, I said "No, thank you." For a straight A student, striving to be the best in the field, declining the offer to attend Hopkins was due to many factors. Hopkins didn't offer any funding. I would have tuition paid for, but I would be subsisting on loans for the duration. TN is paying a 4-year graduate assistantship and a fellowship that is paying $33k for my first year and $18-20k thereafter. While I was paired with a fantastic advisor at JH, I was not guaranteed research with someone in my interest areas: LGBT health and cancer disparities. In TN, I'm working with Dr. Jennifer Jabson: a driven, young researcher and academic who is producing grants, studies, and papers at lightening speed. She is both my advisor and my faculty GRA partner. I'm already working on a paper and a mixed-methods study. It's exactly the work I wanted to do. And there's my marriage and family. Accepting UTK allowed me to be closer to Georgia and my nieces. It also took into account my spouse's desire for rural (and South). He's happier here than Boston. [I'm still getting used to it socially and geographically.] But, it was one factor (in the list of many) that I took into consideration, while not basing my whole choice around. I'm grateful for this opportunity. I'm grateful that I had a choice to make. Not everyone gets to consider which of multiple programs they'd like to attend. I'm inspired each day by Jennifer, her work, and the work we're doing together. This is the research I am supposed to do. And, I know I'll have a mentor and colleague for in her for the rest of my career. I'm grateful that I put myself first in making this decision. I didn't make a choice because it was "the best", because other people couldn't imagine declining an offer (to JH), or because I felt like I had to financially (UTK). I weighed all of the options, talked with many people, and made a choice for me. And, if I sit with that, it shows much personal growth, a commitment to self, capacity to listen to my Self and my needs, and growing trust and compromise in my marriage with Korrie. All of those things are significant, and I'm happy and proud that I've experienced them this year.

I had a facelift on my 65th birthday. I struggled with feeling shallow and superficial, and I spent money I might have saved for retirement, but WOW I'm so glad I did it. After 2 major back to back hip surgeries I'd lost my mojo. I've got it back now and don't regret spending the money one bit! I'm grateful I had the resources to do something so special for myself.

There were many significant experiences this year--and I would like to remind my former self that the Asheville trip was a significant experience from the year before, too. Going back to Greece, and the big OXI was inspiring, and then the aftermath was very disappointing. Not getting into OSU (and the dramatics that ensued) probably directly affected me the most. It would be a lie to say that I'm not still a little resentful, but I am getting over it (and I'm in WV now). It was disappointing to realize I could still lose my work ethic to depression.

We went to Disney World. It was the first time in a long time going on a plane. I fully expected that it would be fine however realized that I was afraid and ended up having panic attacks. This year I became aware how much fear had started to branch out in life really hit me. I have a friend who I watched that happen to, fear is like a mold - a destructive spreading mold. Hadn't realized it had begun to spread. This is not how I want to live. This experience startled me aware of the situation. Also this year throughout the year my heart's been drawn to pray in the Spirit. Not a ton or anything, but especially a couple weeks ago or so, and it was such answered prayer. It was the day everyone was asked to pray for Israel via prayer email chain and to fast for 1 hour too. Wouldn't you know it, I didn't feel like it, started feeling almost sickly. I said I would so I prayed for help that I would pray in the Spirit too. Prayer ended up almost 2 hours, I could feel my heart being moved while I was praying and worshiping. Knowing God accepted and was hearing my prayer, priceless. Not only that some of the things that were coming to my heart, at the end of everything - were part of all the Scriptures that I was drawn to. They were like responses to the prayers. At the very end of this year (Jewish) God is really opening prophetic scriptures to me. Yesterday I was reading in Isaiah and couldn't get one of the scriptures, went searching - and was frustrated...reading things no that's not it, no that either...and a quiet, gentle whisper on my spirit and it made perfect sense. There have been times that God opens His Word for me, we go for hours going from scripture to scripture. Love those moments. Not only that, a pattern of dreams that I've had this year at different times, one where I was like I see it but don't see how it could be...well for the 3rd time my husband (unbeknowns to me) has gotten an opportunity to open his own business...a dream of his, and the money this place is bringing in and has brought in is a lot. Plus I'm getting a promotion getting farther than I ever have and not because I'm trying. Why do I say all these things, not because of the money but because it would open a few doors - one is me going into ministry more. Also, the church my daughter and i attend is trying to build. My husband already said he'd be willing to give 15% to it, being in that kind of success. This would mean great things for the church! It's funny but when I took this job, had a feeling not to get too attached. Not like oh you're going to lose it, but rather that it would be laid down. Where there are many cares, there are many dreams so I'm watching, waiting. If those dreams were really from Adonai then they will be 100%. If they were just dreams then I will know. I'm grateful, abundantly grateful. God has given us much more than we deserve, been with us through thick and thin. I delight in His creation and treasure those moments I know He's there. He is always there but often I'm too dull to sense it.

Because I was unemployed for the very first time in my life and had a minute to breathe, because a new friend in our town kept gently asking me about showcasing my talents, this year I actually wrote and performed my own 90-minute one-woman show -- stories from my life followed by a song I chose for each that I sang and played on guitar , accompanied by my guitar teacher. I am incredibly grateful because i returned to something that is in my blood since childhood -- writing, performing, story telling, singing and making music. I love all these things and they all allow me to be myself in a very happy and alive way. And they were synthesized into one organic autobiographical piece where I told the truth and unburdened so many of my demons in a way that was positive and allowed people to identify with their own. They laughed, they cried...it was cathartic for everyone, but especially for me.. I was relieved it went well!! So many people and friends from our relatively new town came out to see it. People i had not seen in over 20 or even 30 years came to see it. It was as if i had come out from under a rock and was more me than ever -- I would like to do more of this... it was so validating and life-affirming!! And good things came of it...and still are.

My mother passed away in January. It was very traumatic, as I was alone when she passed. My father was traveling to the hospital from their home and I had to stay with the body for a couple hours before he arrived. Then I had to tell my father that his wife of 50 years and 9 days had passed away. That was the worst day of my life! I am still trying to process the loss of my mother and to help my father, who lives 15 hours away in Florida, to process the loss.

When I think of the past year all that comes to mind is my need for change. I have felt like I have been drifting or in need of a change. I started therapy but I don't know that it has helped much. I just feel like I either need to let go of the past and issues I have and accept things as they are or make a huge change and start over. I still haven't decided.

A significant experience I've had this past year was playing my first lead in a feature film. The growth I made as an actor and a person in that time was beyond anything I ever expected of myself. It helped me get over years of self-loathing and fear of failure that I thought I would be stuck with forever. I took on something far bigger than me and it scared the shit out of me. So many times I've buckled under pressure, but I finally rose to the occasion and was able to let go and finally see that things have very little to do with me. I am inspired, humbled, and so friggin' happy.

My father passed away in June. He struggled for the last few years but overall had a long and meaningful life. He had a profound affect on many people and was loved by many. He taught us values, work ethics, and humor. I think of him often and miss him. He was married to my mother for 62 years. She survives but struggles with health everyday. I am grateful for all that my parents did for me ( and us) and I would not be where I am today without their unwavering love and support.

I started to face my fear of teaching in Israel, by enrolling in a teaching certificate program and doing student teaching. For years I have contemplated this career path but always thought I couldn't handle it. But in fact, I managed pretty well and was validated by my instructor that I'm a natural-born teacher. It was a wonderful feeling to overcome my fear and see that I am capable.

Just recently a colleague suicided. He held his depression and despair well, covering it behind a generous spirit and contagious smile, yet below the surface, behind the mask, lurked a deadly disease that took his life. Through the vale of shock and sadness I find myself grateful for this man's life, inspiration and even his death, in that it has quickened my spirit and will hopefully make me a more attentive, compassionate, and effective counselor.

I retired on May 31st. It is both scary and exhilarating at the same time. The bad part is that my income has plummeted by 75-80%. I moved countries from USA back to UK as I could, just about, afford to retire in the UK but not in the states. I'm closer to family, which is good. Overall, I'm very grateful that I could afford to retire at 60 and am looking forward to the new adventures that life is going to bring.

Going to Cuba changed my life. I was glad i went by myself. It showed my courage and strength and my willingness to travel and explore on my own. I also so how fortunate i am to live the live i do. people there have nothing and it's important I work hard to create a life that I can provide for myself, family, and help those in need

The decision to move back to the US is undeniably puzzling and a relief. I didn't know how I felt about home until I started exploring my feelings (my physical, emotional, intellectual, and psychical feelings). I'm physically exhausted from the headaches, and I've realized that they began within months of moving overseas, and they abate when I am back home. Emotionally, I'm ready to be home with the family--Cindy, Jesse and the niblings, along with Mom, Dad, Mamaw--they won't be with me forever, and I want to be with them while I have the chance. Not only that, but I don't want to miss these wonderful years with the kids. Intellectually, I've discovered that my passion is with the Appalachian culture and shaping policy back home. And psychically, I miss the mountains and river and the hollows, and my mind's eye knows where I belong. I cannot bring art to fruition because I'm so far from home without spending any time there at all. So, although most people won't call making a decision an "experience," for me, it truly is: turning my mind around on this is like steering a cruise liner while it's sitting still.

Two (related) experienced spring to mind. In both instances, I spoke up about my true feelings to two persons very close to me - my ex-boyfriend and my mother. Both relationships were complicated, but I've learned to openly share and express my feelings, and set clear boundaries around myself. I've always been frightful of doing so because I was scared to lose people, or be left abandoned by those I love. I've learned, however, that following your own gut and heart is what should be my guiding force - not fear. Setting clear boundaries, and being open and fully honest about my feelings has left me stronger, happier and tremendously grateful.

Another out-of-state move -- the 4th one in 8 years. It's all for very good reasons, but it doesn't get easier. And I've been having a slow-motion tantrum about it for months now. It's an odd experience to have a major life change that is simultaneously incredibly beneficial and profoundly disruptive. I had to leave a place where I was making progress professionally, with a great deal of potential for more. I had to leave a home and neighborhood I loved. But the decision to do so was a no-brainer: my husband's job there was sub-optimal in every way, with no possibility of a local change. Now, he has a position where he can practice the subspecialty he is called to, where he is valued and respected, and where he has a leadership role with the institutional support he needs to be effective. None of that was true in his previous position. All of this came with a life-changing salary upgrade. And as if that wasn't enough, we are now less than 90 minutes away from his family, who we love visiting. But here I am, having to start from scratch again in a new city where I don't know more than one or two people, with no institutional affiliation to rely on. If I were the ambitious, organized, motivated, unstoppable person I wish I were, this would be a fun challenge rather than a leaden weight. But I am who I am, and that includes having to divert enormous time and energy to managing chronic depression without a local support system. I sound pathetic. I'm venting because I'm disgusted with myself. We moved 10 weeks ago and I have only minimally unpacked, because I so thoroughly resent having to do this *again.* If I were sure this was the last time, it might be easier, but I don't think it is, nor do I want it to be. We're renting, so there's a chance we'll buy a house and move locally in a year or two. And while I like where we live, I don't love it; I don't have a strong feeling that this is where I want to be long-term... and I don't know where I would want to be. I feel rootless, with no end to it in sight.

I went on a cruise to South America, around the horn. It was the first trip since my surgery and I am grateful to find that I can travel again.

I first wanted to write that the birth of my second daughter was the significant experience of the year. Then I realized that technically she was born four days before last Rosh Hashanah, so sh belongs to 5774. However experiencing the growth of both of my children was the most significant experience. Recognizing and practicing my responsibilities and getting the rewards for them is changing not just me, but them too. The older one is a sensitive, smart, sassy girl and I know it fro her words and actions. Parenting her is sometimes challenging and always interesting even when I have to be repetitive. She is teaching me patience whether I want it or not. And watching and really seeing her doing what she loves (including reading and playing) teaches me new meanings of fun. Learning about the likes and wants and needs of the younger one is also an amazing experience. I semi-consciously compare and contrast her with how was her sister and the same age and enjoy the differences and similarities. Witnessing how she builds up her personality or how it manifests itself through a more and more varied communication (not really verbal yet though) is a learning experience itself, where I want to pay attention. Thank you daughters to coming to my life. Thank you wife for bringing them to our life.

I had a baby. I am grateful and still working to adjust my life.

I have acknowledged that as I approach seventy and have fewer and fewer industry contacts and meetings that my first career is clearly winding down. I have contemplated this for several years, but realizing that earning income with my vast experience is waning. I fully understand that retirement does bring things to an end, but retirement is not in my consciousness. There is no resentment in the end of my career, but rather questions about how it might have turned out differently. I am also inspired by seeing others my age reinventing themselves.

I got a Moonstone guitar from a friend who was moving to Florida. It was very special to him so it was nice to be able to make him happy because he knew i would play it. It is one of the most beautiful and well crafted guitars i have ever played, let alone owned. The wood work is amazing, with a two piece maple neck with a mahogany body and burled walnut front and back. it has Burtolini pickups and a phase shifter. It is worth around $3000 in the condition its in, and i got it for $500. Its an amazing peice of art but hopefuly by the time i read this again i would have discovered her name.

Many significant experiences ... but none of them in the major sense of the word. I thought about this a lot last night and have concluded that my most significant event this year has been to cleave myself from emotional involvement in work. There has never been a real distiction or difference in my personality between work and home -- same person all the time. Through some guided soul-searching and leadership seminars, I have discovered that there was too much ME at work that just didn't need to be there. Now that I've distanced myself, I am more focused at work and better able to immerse myself in my activities at home without work issues clouding my happiness. I ran the gamut of emotions getting here -- but I think I'm relieved and grateful for the opportunities that got me to this point. I am inspired by the yet to be discovered potential in me -- I am unfinished and looking towards the future with joy.

This may sound petty, but, my son finally capitulated to getting his driver's license. This is significant. We live in a huge city where car commuting is the only option. Both my kids are now in the same school for the first time and he, my son, can drive them to and from school each day. This has made my daily routine manageable and more relaxed. I am grateful.

My 87 year old mother fell and broke her back. The possibility of losing my mother mother reminded me of how lucky I am to have had a beautiful loving childhood. She continues to be a wonderful role model. I hope my children feel as special and loved as I did and do. I cherish every moment I have with her.

My youngest son tested positive for HIV. I knew he was living a dangerous lifestyle and have really anticipated this result, so I wasn't surprised. He hasn't told me himself yet, and we haven't talked about it. I found out because his last boyfriend told him father about it. He reacted to the news by traveling across the country, so I haven't seen him for two months. He does text me once in a while and sends me pictures showing me where he is - he looks like he is enjoying the trip. He has started another relationship out there, and I hope he's honest about his test results and is now practicing safe sex for the sake of his partner. He doesn't seem to be interested in treatment, which leads me to believe he will get sick pretty quickly. I'm sad that he didn't have the life I wanted for him.

After 7 years of graduate school, I finally defended and graduated with my PhD. You would think I would be more relieved than I was but to be honest it was kinda anti-climatic. Overall I am happy that I am done and am trying to get adjusted to the next phase of my life as an assistant professor . It's still weird to think of myself as Dr. but I am lowly getting used to it.

A close friend of our family committed suicide about two months ago. He was a dear friend of my two adult kids and I knew him through them, and had worked with him when I first moved here to Richmond in 2005. He was so well loved and highly thought of among his peers and yet he doubted his worthiness of anything good in this life. After his death, while family was sorting through belongings, it was found that this dear young man had suffered since he was a teenager from several mental health issues and was on and off medication until the time of his death. These are things of which none of his friends were aware. They only knew he drank too much and were always concerned with this and offered support continually. This event has brought much to the forefront of my life. His group of friends rallied around each other and held one another up and continue to do so in this time of grief. This has made me very aware of the importance of remaining in touch with family and friends often - even just a daily text to say you are loved and on my mind - I have not, in the past, been very mindful of remaining in contact with my loved ones, and this event has made me aware of the importance of being present and letting those I love know I'm always here thinking about them. This has also made me more aware that some who suffer from mental illness feel shame and isolation because of it, and the pain of feeling worthless can become overwhelming.

in february my boyfriend proposed. i didn't think i wanted/needed to be married and often worried it would change our amazing relationship. the second he uttered "will you marry me" i knew inside it was everything i wanted. this feels like a new step forward and i'm excited for the years ahead with ryan by my side as "husband"

I got a job at Papa Gino's and the manager there (Kathleen), has been one of my biggest supports. She'll go out of her way for me, to make me feel safe. She is very understanding, and I'm very grateful to have such an amazing mentor, employer, and friend. It inspires me to be a better person, and if it were not for her, I'm not sure if I would be where I am today.

The most significant experience I have experienced this past year is buying a new home with my partner and wife Emma. There was something calming and warm about finding a home with my love. I didn't think I would experience that feeling, but even as a write this reflection, sitting in my home as my wife glides by me with a smile - I feel at peace.

I have gotten closer to God through meditation. It augments my church attendance and bible study.

The most significant experience in 2015 was the day I gained FULL APPROVAL for myself. It was in late June and I was struggling...trying to get over breaking up with the man I love...feeling fat and tired and unworthy and full of self hate ...I had a chat with a man who nailed it with me...he said, "Alyson, the moment you full approve of yourself and everything that comes into your life is when the shift will occur"..... and in that moment I made a decision to fully approve at all times....Self hate is gone....self loathing is gone...no more shame. It's full on Alyson time.... This shift happened instantaneously....almost without effort except I had to discipline myself at first to not slip into old thinking....it effected me by putting me on the fast track to growth. I am so grateful and relieved as I had never been able to silence the inner asshole. And now I am inspired to live my life knowing I won't sabotage it will my own self hate...... FULL APPROVAL.......BOOM

My Aunt unexpediatly dying back in January. I didn't really know her, and struggled to think of found memories as she didn't always find it easy to be around others. I can be the same, very happy at home on my own, but I want to make sure the people close to me espeically my nephews and Goddaughter do know me, and have good memeries.

A working relationship that was once controlling and manipulative from a supervisor has completely changed in a positive way. I am absolutely grateful and it has completely changed my entire attitude and demeanor.

My girlfriend of five years broke up with me in December. It was earth shattering in every way possible. I was planning a life with her and her husband, trying to buy a house with them, and then within the span of two months it was over. I realize now that the relationship was extremely toxic, probably for both of us, and I am extremely grateful that she ended it. Because of the way I was being manipulated and having my confidence stripped away, I'm not sure I would have been capable of doing so myself. It has been the best thing that could have happened to me. I've spent the past ten months processing my feelings, regaining my confidence, building my friendships, and pursuing my own interests again which has been so liberating. I feel like myself for the first time in years. I believe this experience has helped me appreciate what qualities are important in a long term relationship,. As I embark into the next chapter of my life, I intend to seek out people with similar life goals and attitudes to pursue as partners.

In the past I had and an awesome experience with my life because I got my license. It affected me a lot because I had a lot more freedom from the house and I could go out of town with some friends and just come back whenever I wanted to basically. I am grateful to have my license because my mom kept pushing me to get my license and when i went to get my permit I failed the first time and i wanted to just give up but my mom would not let me she gave me a little speech and then the next day we went back up and tried again and I passed. But when I was going for my license my mom pushed me to get more hours at my job so I could get enough money to pay for the lessons. So that is an experience I had in the past year.

My youngest daughter gave birth to a darling baby boy. She said she never wanted children but she's a spectacular mother! I'm happy for her and really enjoying little Kit! It's great to be a grandmother again after 16 years

A significant experience that has happened to me in the past year, was that I traveled to Sicily with out my parents to go see my family from over there. I am grateful that my parents had so much trust to send me to a different country without them. The experience I had over there for a whole summer was so amazing and beautiful. Everything is so much more different then it is here in America. In a sense of their lifestyle, the food, the people. I guess you could say that I was also inspired by this trip because as soon I came home, I have this urge to speak more Sicilian around my family. I was also inspired by the way the food tastes and how it's prepared. I am so used to it, that when I eat or cook food here it has to taste the way I ate it over there. I am just so grateful for getting to experience a trip like that.

A pretty significant experience that happened this year was that I came out of the closet as an out and proud gay woman. It was, and still is, one of the hardest things I've ever done. Despite that, I'm relieved that it finally happened, and how accepting people have been. It felt like for the first time, I was able to be 100% me around everyone, including myself. It was also a very insightful experience, because I wasn't just lying to my family and friends, I was lying to myself, and being fully honest with how I feel is amazing. I knew since the 6th grade, but saying it out loud and giving others that information just makes that much more legitimate.

It doesn't feel like anything personally significant has really happened in the past year. I feel stuck. Again. Trapped, even. Feels like I need to make a change, but if the pattern holds I'll feel like this again in a year. I'm not really sure what to do about that.

This past May I got married. It was one of the most stressfull times in my life, and at times I'm overwhelmed by the finality of my decision. Did I marry the right woman? Did we get married too fast? The immense stress of merging two lives together is sometimes unbearable. Marriage is hard work, and I am often frustrated with the feeling that I am the only one doing any work. However, it is all worth it. I love my wife, and I have no doubt that God put her in my life. Dreaming of the future is inspiring, and makes me smile. I'm just ready for it to get here.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year is when my Great Aunt Mary died of cancer. This was very hard for my family and it affected me in a different way then one would think. I wasn't as sad as the rest of my family and that sounds harsh I know but I wasn't very close to Mary the way the rest of my family was. I was sad for her death of course, but the way it affected me was that I realized how short life is. Mary was a smoker and she ultimately died of lung cancer. It is a way to learn from others mistakes to take care of your body. When someone you know dies it affects everyone in different ways and now I intend on living life to the fullest because life is very short and very fragile. You need to take care of your body so that you can live a long and healthy life. I am not grateful that she died , but I would say I was relieved when she did die. Mary was in a lot of pain throughout her sickness I am very relieved that she is not in any pain now.

There is nothing terribly significant, but I have felt like there were several instances that were telling me to "wake the fuck up!" A near car accident in J's car, my car accident in February that I came out of totally unharmed, a bad night where I left my purse on the train and freaked out... I've been feeling grateful when I think about it, but also wondering what I am supposed to wake up to see. I'm waiting for an epiphany - and maybe it will never come? Maybe I'm being told to just be present and grateful? I suppose I need to continue to reflect on that.

My husband and I got married in November and his Aunt gifted us some money for our honeymoon, we choose to go to Europe, I had never been, my husband lived in Germany as a kid since his parents were in the military. We went to Rome, Paris and London. It was always a dream of mine to go to Europe and I am forever grateful to Aunt Lynn for such an amazing gift. It taught me that good things can just happen, was starting to doubt that after the hell of a year prior to the wedding we had. She didn't even ask for anything in return either, I want to totally pay it forward someday!

I finally graduated from grad school! I wanted to feel awesome and inspired and grateful, but I felt sort of empty and wondering why I suffered through it all and wasted so much money on it. Ha! I don't know, I'm hoping some time will help me to feel like it was well worth the money. Maybe as I start looking for another job, the degree and status will help bump me into a more interesting role.

There are 2 events that come to mind: On the 1st Friday in February, I got into my dream college. I found out in the middle of calculus class, and couldn't stop happy crying. When I called my mom to tell her, she thought I'd gotten into an accident (oops!). It was just such a relief after initially getting deferred, it felt like all my hard work I'd put into high school had paid off. My 2nd experience was graduating high school. Sometimes I look back on graduation day like wow, did that really happen? It was so surreal to put on that cap and gown and walk (run) across that stage. High school felt like it'd never end, but yet somehow it did. I was so relieved for it to have all been over.

The Parks department retired the mobile bandshell. Why do I care? Because I'm the business manager for my city's official municipal band, and that meant I had a 20-event season to plan with no stage. So I started working alternatives and digging. Chats with the city manager, Parks, donors, charitable organizations...and because I did this, we ended up with a capital campaign and committee to raise the funds for a new one. We succeeded. But it ate all my available time.

Moving from Austin to Maryland and Maryland to Denver. Resentful. Hurt. Broken. Ashamed. Sad. Angry. Lost.

I had to release a beloved partner in order to find a more stable future. My boyfriend was sweet and loving but not committed or financially available. At 36, in the middle of nursing school, working part time, looking toward five more years of school and with my mother's memory beginning to falter, I simply couldn't afford to maintain my relationship with someone who wouldn't fully invest in the bills and caring for the home. So I ended that relationship and embraced one from earlier in time, committing myself fully to a woman for the first time and a monogamous relationship for the first time in six years. It's good, it was the right decision to make.

Our pregnancy! We weren't trying for very long. I remember staring the the pregnancy test and being in shock! 7 1/2 months later I can feel him moving and stretching inside me. I am grateful and nervous and excited. All of the emotions.

movng back to the US after being in London for almost 12 years has been profound. Not the least of the experience has been stepping in to help deal with mom. Her Alzheimers has progressed SIGNIFICANTLY, and there is no way that Darlene could have continued to try and manage it as she had been - with very little help from J9. Now with Karen and I here, we are able to bear a lot more of the task. Aside from that, just re-connecting with a quality of life that i have missed so much and Mark if experiencing for the first time. The giant space of our house. The vastness of our back year. the opportunities for outdoor activities - as we did with Belinda and Amanda, zip lining, white water river rafting, hiking, the Grand Canyon, driving,etc.... And Luke's visit as well. There's just SO much connected with this move that i can't possibly spell it all out here. It has been incredible and intrinsically feels like the right thing.

This past year ,I completed a project at work that had been going on for almost 5 years. I can't believe that I allowed all this time to pass . I should have been finished with it within a year. I realized that my fear of failure kept me from moving forward. I quickly embraced a second similar project with enthusiasm and confidence. However ,the time passed and I feel I'm back to that place that draws all the inspiration out of me. I have promised myself to complete this task before the end of the year. I am determined. Wish me luck!

I passed my grade 10 under a very great pressure and i was so relieved from this

In April, Lisa emailed me that she had inoperable cancer and was going to die and asked me to help her get her affairs in order. 1. I couldn't help her get affairs in order. She died in early June and I still haven't been able to. 2. She was slightly relieved to have an explanation when people from her tsock club asked why their kits were always late. She could say well I'm dying, so you probably won't get them. I empathized slightly too well with this being-off-the-hook feeling. 3. I went to visit her in Babylon before she died but ended up staying in Hampton Bays for 5 nights. By myself. At a yoga class--at Good Ground yoga--I realized that I want to write a book called Good Ground, about sacred soil. 4. I made a list of What Matters and What Doesn't Matter and taped it to the inside of the medicine cabinet. Lisa liked it. 5. I had intense life-is-short clarity for a few months after this all happened. It caused me to shut down Dirty Hands, finish my musical and record with Brian. Until sometime around May 2016, give or take, I will not be working for money. I signed up for a 9 month fiction writing class. So even though I no longer have this clarity, I set a lot of things in motion and seem to be living a purposeful life, even if other people might not see it that way.

In the last year I received several wake-up calls. I was reminded firmly and often that I cannot look to others to decide that my life is "good" or "bad". I have to be happy with my life for myself. I have to look at what I want and see how it fits into my life myself. I have to decide who I want to be and what I want to be doing myself. I am renewed. I know where I want to be and I am happy to be there. I am at peace with the people in my life and healing old wounds. I think that is the biggest take away. I am healing. myself.

House selling/buying--relieved! No regrets. Our overall experience was stressful, but its behind us now and we can move on! Hopefully start a family soon.

One of the best things that happended to me in the past year was tenure. I recieved tenure!! I really is such a relief. I always was worried about how people that I work with felt about me. Now I don't have to do that anymore. I also have a sense of permanance. Eric and I have been on the move since 1997. When I think about it, even though we bought I house here in 2009, Orrville is just beginning to feel like home. Tenure has a lot to do with it. Ultimately, I am very grateful. But I also learned in the last year to take time to enjoy the good times. We also went through some difficult times this year so you have to savor the good moments.

I visited my brother and Dad in San Diego over the summer. Although it started as a pleasant enough trip, things spiraled out of control between by brother and me, as they usually do. Although I started out full of sympathy and understanding for my brother, it was quickly back to attacks, arguments, and angst. However, something quite miraculous happened following my departure. He has substantially changed and he is working hard to be a more understanding and "present" person, based largely on the teachings of Eckhardt Tolle. There has really been an amazing transformation and I feel as if despite all of the hardships he is facing, that he is showing amazing resilience. It gives me hope for him and for us in the New Year.

Highly significant for me is that Joe, my twin brother, died September 8th, 2015. Another is that my daughter has opened up to me more, and we are able to move forward with growing our mother/daughter relationship. I am grateful for the experiences of both--a loss and a gain. Each seem to be a mix of both. I am at such a pivotal point of change in my life, my thinking, and I hope, my actions and how I interact with people and the world.

Finally diagnosed with the thyroid issues I've been telling doctors I had for years. Most days I bounce between grateful and resentful; grateful for the diagnosis (yay there is an answer) and resentful of the time I lost fighting, and the fact that I'm not seeing improvement yet...

I found out earlier this year that I am now in the Jeopardy! contestant pool for 18 months. I am so incredibly excited. My lifelong dream has been to compete on Jeopardy! I know I am going to win several games! I have not heard yet, but I KNOW I will be selected to go play in California! This is a great exercise in patience and trust. I just have to trust I will be called as I know I will be. I know whenever I am to play will be the PERFECT time!

I found out one of my friends from high school took his own life. I am still in shock about it. Never in a million years would I have thought this could happen and I wish there was anything I could have done to stop him from doing it.

I have, again, had several significant experiences. First, my Hubby and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary and the 30th anniversary of our first date. Both were marked with trips away by ourselves...So proud of the relationship we have...Looking forward to more adventure to come!! Oldest son lost his job and then proceeded to turn it into an amazing opportunity to further his career and grow his bank account...VERY proud of his ingenuity and work ethic!! 2nd son spent the summer in Ohmaha...Was given major responsibilities and excelled!! Again, proud of that young man!! 3rd son spent the summer being a companion to a special needs young man who became a surrogate member of our family...Again, proud of this young man's ability to work with those who are not 'run-of-the-mill'!! Took first daughter on a seaplane ride to celebrate the beginning of the end of high school for her...Happy I came up with idea as she told me it was the highlight of her summer!! Younger daughter gave up soccer to run X-Country. Many people not happy with that...She is strong...Proud of her confidence!!

Jerrell, our daughter Rachel's boyfriend, assaulted herl during a heated argument, about a year ago. That started an ordeal that is only now settling down. She and he are still together, but there is a barrier between us now, mainly on his part. It affected me mainly by causing me to sort out the proper balance, between compassion, tough love, saying what needs to be said to my child versus letting her walk her own walk. I'm not glad it happened because it was a setback in our relationship with Jerrell and I don't know how things will recover. Diana and I have talked over our issues with it, we both are in pretty close accord in how we view the situation.

The most significant thing to happen to me this year is that I got married to a wonderful man who is kind, loving, funny, and principled. Obviously, being a newlywed is an incredible experience--I am awash in the love of my new husband. But what I didn't expect is to be so overwhelmed by the love of my family and friends--their kind words, gifts, support, and well wishes for us have made the process of planning a wedding, getting married, and being a newlywed truly unforgettable. I am so surrounded by love that it's hard to feel anything but deep and unfettered gratitude. This gratitude has opened me up to deeper generosity, kindness, humor, and calmness.

It wasn't just one experience, but the decision to start coaching last September. I was at a place in work where I thought I could have some flexibility and the team I coach was also at a place of reorganization and turn-over. We sort of found each other and while I knew I wanted to be a part of that, I was also nervous about what it all meant. I showed up on the first day of practice with all kinds of ideas and plans and quickly realized that most of my plans would have to go right out the window. And that THAT was ok! The decision to coach was significant and the year that has followed has been awesome. I have learned to be much better at looking at what's right in front of me and going with the flow and making the best of any situation. I have learned even more patience and also a new kind of leadership. Working with kids has taught me so much - they teach me something everyday. I can absolutely say that this decision has been one of the best, and most defining of my post-college adult years so far.

This past June I was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer following, what I thought would be, a routine hysterectomy. It shook me to my core. It forced me to put my PhD written prelim on hold and I basically had to "hurry up and wait" until I could have a second surgery 7 weeks later to stage the cancer. I had to keep it together for my family. Thankfully, the pathology from the second surgery was negative for cancer !!!! I feel incredibly lucky because it was found at such an early stage. I have a new appreciation for my life.

I have 2. I got married! It has made me more aware of myself and how I relate to others especially my wife. It was a very happy day for me and one I will treasure forever. The second event was that my sister-in-law died in a car accident. The grieving process has been unexpectedly tough since I didn't think I was capable of the level of sadness I have been experiencing. It comes and goes never really getting easier. I have had to be there for my family to comfort them when all I wanted to do for myself was to curl up in bed and shut out the world and my feelings. I feel so much closer to Aleeza's family then I did before. I know that I am part of the family

Depression. I was very depressed last fall. It was a window into the darkness. I lost sight of the amazingness that is my life. While it was extremely painful, i learned a lot and feel i can better understand others now. And can take my positive attitude and help others see the light, silver lining, blessings in their own life.

Living with my mother and experiencing the full extent of her alcoholism and drug addition has been significant over the last year. I'm grateful I experienced it as it's changed my relationship with her mostly for the better; relieved it's over (both because I've moved out and because she seems to be dealing with her issues) and resentful that she and her partner put me through something so stressful at a time when they should have been looking after me.

I have fewer and fewer significant days. I live each day. I do the things I am supposed to do. In work I strive to do different things important in my class. With coaching I have completed the required courses. Maybe more research is what I should be doing. Or more ah-ha moments in life in Billings, MT. What would that look like... HMMM

I filed for divorce from my husband. It was an incredibly painful thing to do, but it has also been very liberating. I no longer live in the shadow of an alcoholic narcissist, and even though there is still a long road ahead of me, I feel so much healthier now that I'm no longer in the environment of such a toxic person. I don't feel like I'm walking on eggshells every second of the day, worried that something will set him off. I feel like I can be fully myself and a much better, more present parent to my son. At the same time, I'm surprised at how angry I am -- at him, at myself, at the situation. While I do feel he should bear the majority of the blame for the situation, I am disappointed with myself that I did not realize sooner that something was very wrong. I am angry that I am putting my child through this. I am angry that he does not get to have a better father in his life. And I am angry that my (soon to be ex) husband somehow thinks he is the victim in all of this.

In the past year, I have moved 3,000 miles away from my family, been homeless, briefly jobless and pushed to the brink of giving up. It has changed me, it has changed the way I view the world, it has changed the way I view myself. While, I can appreciate and am grateful for the changes and for G-d continuously giving me the strength to push through, I also want it to be over. I want to sleep in a bed every night and have food to eat. I want to give my son a better life. On the other hand, again, this experience has awakened something inside of me that has laid dormant. I want to change things, I want to help people, I want to wage a war against homelessness and poverty but not in the way politicians have done before. I want it to end, not punish those who are already suffering. No one should have to be without the basic necessities. A bed should not be a luxury.

I traveled by myself to Washington DC and Maryland for a Sheep & Wool Festival. I planned the trip, payed for the trip and met up with friends from a knitting website whom I had never met before in person. I was pleased with myself. I took time for me and did what I wanted. The extreme sense of freedom and exhilaration in being in a place on my own, to do whatever I liked was intoxicating. There were moments I was lonely and wanted to share my experiences with my boyfriend but overall it was a positive and engaging vacation.

A significant experience was attending a meditation retreat on Orcas Island. I had a cabin right on the Sound to myself. Though it was a bit dark and cold, the solitude and time to really read and think about poetry and meditation was heavenly. The place was magical, the food delicious, and there were bunnies hopping on the grass like the set of a Disney movie.

Have had the opportunity to volunteer at an old age home on a neighboring kibbutz. I am very grateful for the opportunity to "give something back".

I went through the process of finding a new job after being fired from my first job. Originally I was relieved, but once I realized what happened, I was stressed out. The stress continued to build as I looked and looked to no avail. 6 months later, I found a senior analyst position at my current company and could not be more happy. At this point, I am so happy with the way things are going, I feel that I have taken a 180 degree turn from where I was last year, resentful, depressed, and unhappy.

Ari my first grandchild was born Really wonderful experience at the beginning Soured quickly as I realised my daughter was partnered with an abusive man (of the insecurity-control-isolation model) with surveillance equipment all over the house, preoccupied with end-of-the -world and the collapse of civilisation as we know it I did well for my daughter and the baby but it was a walking-on-eggshells experience overall and I was frightened It all ended in a big scream up and walk out by this "King of the House" to whom "respect" had not been given.

I lost my best friend this past year. We had been friends for over 30 years. Our friends hip was very strong and I thought we had a long term relationship. We grew apart over an issue. She disagreed with me on something and it eroded things over time. I think it has more to do with her than me, but there are two sides to every story. I am resentful as I believe I was unconditional to her as she did things that I did not always agree with but as her friend and support, I didn't judge. I hope it changes over time. I would love an apology.

Career transition from full-time National Guard employment, through mandatory retirement, to beginning a new career with DCMA. Dealing with the unknown, and first-time experiences like filing for unemployment, Medicaid was challenging, frustrating and nerve-wracking. The job search process was much the same, until requests for interviews started to flow. I'm grateful to those who offered networking assistance and professional career advice. All their encouragement boosted my confidence. Within 3-1/2 months, it all paid off with a new career! Definitely feeling optimistic for the future.

We were in the States for three weeks. Being with so much family reminds me of the effort we need to make to be a part of one, and being in the States really reaffirmed how we don't want to live there.

I directed The Merry Wives of Windsor. One of the most epic projects I've ever completed in my life, not because I personally did all the work, but because I was steering the ship and to do that takes enormous self-confidence and also the ability to sustain concentration and energy for a long period of time, and to manage time efficiently. It totally changed my sense of myself as an artist, and going into grad school is a totally different experience with that under my belt. Instead of saying "Maybe you could do X?" in Directing class, I find myself saying "I would do X." Which can possibly get a little obnoxious, but I don't think I've actually said it in a way that was pompous and untrue. Oh, and did I mention I started grad school?

I didn't get a job I really wanted. I felt it was a perfect job for me but alas, I was not the perfect candidate for the employer! I'd been looking for new work on and off and had some previous rejections, but this one hit hard. It had everything. But not! because I wasn't right for them, it wouldn't have been right for me. I'm still sorry about it. "Perfect" jobs don't come along so often.

I had an opportunity to travel to various countries in Europe with my mother and siblings. It was an excellent trip and a lot of fun. I am grateful that I have the means to travel and that I had a chance to do so with family. It has only whetted my appetite for more travel and made me resolve to work towards a lifestyle where it is less the exception and more the rule.

My husband and I went through our first session of IVF. We had ten eggs, 2 sperm, 1 blastocyst and no pregnancy. It's time to accept that biological children will likely not be in our future, or to throw good money after bad. I'm heartbroken and resentful.

Joined LLS in training Inspired me to get fit, raise money in honor of my late husband and feel like I could now let go of the life I had with ange and move ahead with life in positive way love to workout bike riding is something I can do successfully made new friends found another purpose!!

My dad had major, unexpected surgery. It was the first time he's been the one to have something major happen to him, and the first time the family had to prepare themselves for the potentiality of his passing. It was scary and hard and upsetting. The family didn't show our best selves. It was truly the first time I've had to come face to face with the reality of my parents' mortality. Life continues on and I'm reaching a new era where parents start to pass. I'm so scared.

I had to reapply to graduate school due to an improper discharge from the program. I was furious because my advisor failed to notify me and the program about the situation - this has delayed my professional and personal growth and has made me seriously reconsider the effectiveness of the mentor program at the school. I am resolute to complete the program, but feel that the school has tarnished its image irretrievably.

In January I passed the 5 year anniversary of Nancy's death. Starting in March of '14, the process of moving beyond my missing being a part a couple to recognizing and acting on setting the direction for MY life began. It culminated in the early days of 2015 as I passed this landmark date. As the year progressed, I have made more definitive and conscious decisions about what I want to do and how I want to be in the next phases of my life. This has been the most significant change in the past year. I am very grateful for this change.

I moved across the country without having a job in an area I was incredibly unfamiliar with. I'm grateful for new experiences and adventures in a new area. It's been challenging at times with trying to get a job and meeting new people but I'm ultimately happy I'm able to travel and live in a new place.

My boss degraded me in front of about a 12 colleagues at the beginning of a school year. He then gave notice 2 weeks later and stayed for the remainder of the school year. I couldn't quit and needed to rise above the humiliation. He did not believe in process and so talking with him was not a resolution. This boss was remorseful but could only pretend nothing happened. I couldn't forgive him but needed to watch my step so he wouldn't retaliate again. Our work place has no accountability....I was stuck. Interesting to see how other colleagues responded and made me see what they were made of. As time goes by, I wonder what I am made of had I been one of the dozen people? Could I forgive him had we talked? Maybe. What could I have done differently?

I get a new job position, at the beginning I was exited and motivated. Highly grateful, but along the last few months I realize that it is not an honest business, and even I need the money, I decided to quit as it is unethical business that I am not agree with. Actually I have a lot of uncertainty, but feel proud of myself to even against my financial interest, I make a decision that allow me to be in peace with my conscious.

The failure of my business was a bitter pill to swallow but I have been reading an amazing book that is helping me cope with the out come. My Father My King, the hardest book I have ever read! This books is helping me understand that Gods plan is beyond my comprehension and that all things, including the bad, happen for a reason. God is in control of all things and I am to use the tests he presents to me to grow in my faith and thrive. He loves me like a father loves His children, but tough love is always hard.

Ken's Death. Full Stop. In Ken's death, I learned about grace, friendship, grief, devastation, heartache, loss, forgiveness, gratitude, patience, family, priorities....so many things. All the things. I know that I am loved beyond measure. I know that I am not alone. I know that I will be ok. Some days I'm sad, some days I'm happy. Many days I'm guiltily grateful. I own it all.

In the winter of last year (Dec/Jan/Feb), I was sick quite a bit with something that wasn't really easy to diagnose. It made me miserable and I missed a lot of work. It made me realize, however, that I was pretty miserable and stressed out without the illness. Around late May, my father had open heart surgery and he's only 50. It really made me think about taking better care of myself, as I don't want to be dealing with illness for most of my adult life. It inspired me to start taking better care of my body and paying more attention to my health. I am grateful for the opportunity to make changes now before my health becomes a problem.

This time last year I was writing about how relieved I was that my father didn't have Alzheimer's but some inexplicable mild cognitive decline tied to his lifelong battle with anxiety and depression. Over the past year, it has become abundantly clear that Alzheimer's is more and more likely to be the cause of his issues, and coming to terms with this reality has been a real challenge. I find myself down more than I've ever been before, and I know that my marriage is suffering because of it. In some strange way, I am grateful to have a clear diagnosis, but knowing that I will likely never see my father as his former self is heartbreaking. I despise this disease, and I resent that my mother is now living as a caretaker much younger than she should have to.

A significant experience that has happened in this past year was my whole college freshman year. It completely affected me and I'm grateful that I had the experience to live away from home and to make new friends and take great classes and somewhat figure out what I want to do with my life. I'm relieved that freshman year is over, but I'm so excited for my future and the rest of my college experience.

This year I took a new job at BCBSM with Sales Strategy. It has been hard. Really hard. Hard isn't only negative. I have been pushed outside my comfort zone. I've grown in my professional skills: management, account management, client and vendor relationship and presenting.In becoming a better manager, I've also learned a lot about what I do and don't want in my career in the future. The pressure, hours and travel of the new job has tested my marriage. Less time together, less time to get chores and house tasks done. But we've adjusted, and we're better. We communicate better and I've learned to let go when things aren't up to my impossible standards.

This year has been a journey of self- I have been self reflective, quite - alone a great deal by choice - I want to seek and understand and welcome my true self and share that person with the world. I am quieter, have softer elbows to soften the blows. I spent a year with a counselor working on issues with my mother and learned how to really create my own boundaries and rules that work for me and our relationship is all the better for it. She is softer too, much with age and wisdom and it is nice to be around her now... I realize she won't be here forever and I want to laugh and enjoy the time we do have left - I say no regrets and not having this relationship would be a big one for me so I seek it when needed and leave it alone when I don't. I am grateful for this continued journey of self, I like who I am discovering and am joyful each morning when I awake - I like my silence and crave relationships now but only on my terms I don't waste the energy just to have beings in my life - I have to want you and your energy in my life now... this is inspiring and I am hopeful for all the years to come...

Thank G-d, nothing terribly monumental. My son graduated from high school and he set his registration and admission to the JC all by himself. He is ready and capable of going on to Texas and the 4-year school. Mommy is NOT ready. I am proud of him. My daughter did not get into UT as planned. She is attending TSU and did that on her own. She is so happy in Austin and has a fantastic work ethic. I am proud of her. Despite my best efforts, ha ha, my kids seem to be good people.

i have even clearer in my mind and heart that speaking up is not always about changing someone else's mind, it may or may not, but things just the same need to be said, need to riffle the strands that do and don't bind us together for better and worse it was good that he stayed true to his course so that i could in turn be true to mine, and in spite of his protestations to the contrary, w.c. did not, has not lit another fire. i mean he did, but it was just to remind me and him of course that he could if he wanted to, but he listened in spite of himself. I am reminded saying so is potent. not saying so is killing.

My parents' 50th wedding anniversary was this year. All three kids put together a party for them. Primarily my sister and I did the planning and execution. It was, for me, nice to be relied upon by the others to get things done. (being the youngest, I'm often left out of that part.) It was inspiring to hear from all the people who came about the things they love/remember/admire about my parents. I am glad we had the chance to honor them, and remind them how richly their lives have blessed others. It really inspired me. So often, the words that were shared about them were "integrity," "honesty," "generosity." I'm inspired to make and keep those things primary in my own life.

My wife and I got married in May! It was a deeply moving ceremony and we were very intentional about how we crafted the weekend to build up to it on the last day. All the hard work and trials/tribulations that came up to it were difficult but important and we exited the other side stronger for it.

This year has been a year of transformation. In March I received a $10,000 pay cut. In July we were informed our program was closing due to funding difficulties. Luckily, I got to continue working through a contract with Woodinville High School and will hopefully be reinstated to full-time through a position at Marysville High School. I received another pay cut in this process, but am grateful to still have a school-based position making decent-enough money. I've used this experience as an opportunity to make connections with other therapists in the community to begin training in DBT, a therapy that I am hopeful will give relief to many students who struggle with emotion regulation as well as suicidality. I feel grateful and resentful and inspired depending on the day and my outlook. I'm trying to stay in gratitude and remain open to the possibilities. This year I also began a 12-Step program for sex & love addiction after a series of challenging relationships. I feel similarly about my involvement in this program to my feelings about my job--grateful, relieved, resentful, and inspired, all depending on the moment and my outlook. I am hopeful that this program as well as seriously undertaking therapy and skills-training will help me to alter my relationship with myself and with others.

I went to Selma and walked the streets and across the famous bridge. I listened to people talk about that time and its relationship to the present, and I found myself moved to be part of making big change in the world. And I want it to be big change that starts with single people deciding that change is needed, and speaking and organizing and living into a new future. I am grateful and inspired by those who help me to see and support me in this anti-racism, anti-oppression anti-white supremacy work.

After months of pain, and then more months of itching--lots of acupuncture and wondering and aching... I was living in Florida with Jodi and discovered a spot on my vulva. It was the day after my 28th birthday, and I'd had a lustful day of pot and mimosas with a Cuban bar singer the day before. I was examining my babe for beauty in the wall-length closet mirror, when I saw this purple-red discolored spot that was bigger than a dime right next to my clit. I searched all the town for a Planned Parenthood that would see me, but it was a Saturday, which in Florida is apparently reserved for abortions, only. A few days later, with my friend Stacey Monk, I finally got in to see a gynecologist, who took one look at me and said, "Skin cancer. You're going to want to get this checked out immediately by a dermatologist." Stacey drove me 14 hours home to Maryland, through ice storms on I-95, where I got in to see my dad's dermatologist, who was actually a witch of a woman, in the meh way, not in the wonderful way. Nevertheless, I found out through her that I had level 2 atypia on my vulva--two steps away from melanoma, and I'd have to have it removed. Which I did. But not by the witch doctor; by a man named Dr. Grace. He was white-haired and red-skinned and kind as kin. I did a ritual the night before where I made these symbolic spell-like things called sigils, and intended for my vagina to be left in perfect order to experience full pleasure. For the doctor to be compassionate and kind. For my wholeness and healing to happen now. I orgasmed with the sigils in mind (like the sigil gods instructed me to) and cried and cried and cried. It took months for my vagina to feel painless, but eventually even the scar dissolved and everything went back into order. 10 days after my surgery I moved back to Portland where I sunk into a pretty deep black hole, then experienced some sexual assault from a boss and mentor that put me right over the edge. I packed up all of my things into 10 large boxes, shipped them home on Amtrak, and flew across the country to my parents house where I decided I was to stay until I felt fully and totally healed. I spent the rest of the snowy winter doing my very best not to run from reality. I hired healers and coaches and somatic therapists and acupuncturists. I was determined to get all the help I possibly could, having tried long enough to get through on my own. Now, months later, I'm back again at my parents house, but this time after a month-long music tour that ended at Burning Man. Burning Man--it was there where I saw just how much and how exactly I've healed from my sexual trauma. I was fearless. I was free. I was able to do whatever I wanted with my body and my sexuality, without any sense of regret, remorse, shame or terror. I feel more whole than ever before. I am chasing my love, my joy--but without any angst or rush. With presence and knowing. That I'm meant for it. That I'm worthy. That pleasure is my birthright. That even if something tries to take that away, I can take the truth back, just the same. So, I am grateful for that passage through the birth canal. It was not without much pain and agony or feelings of powerlessness and helplessness, but I was reborn this year. And couldn't be more glad.

I had a break down. It was a turning point for me. I held a knife to my wrist and I screamed and I didn't know it was me screaming. I bashed the walls with a broom. Mum called the police. I think I needed to hit that point to let myself feel all the things I struggle with. In the long term it's been a positive thing because it forced me into a position where I had to deal with the emotions and issues I was facing. But at the time I was so sad and I cried a lot. I was exhausted. I couldn't talk to my parents properly and I was so angry with my mum. I don't feel angry any more with her. I feel like I've accepted a lot more about who she is and what I can change in others.

Dena was born this year. She had been eagerly awaited, and now that she's here, our family feels perfect. I am beyond grateful for the gift of her life and I am still amazed, every day, at the incredible person she's growing into. Sammy learned how to ride a bike without training wheels - and I wasn't even there. His grandparents taught him how to do it. He's such an awesome kid.

The most significant experience has been getting pregnant. I wasnt sure if I was going to be able to (not sure why, but just a general fear I've had) and when I did, I was terrified. This is a huge change in mine/our lives and I wasnt sure if I was ready for it. It's much easier being selfish and having the me time. Now that I am just 3 short weeks from my due date, I am very excited (but still nervous). I have liked being pregnant (granted, I have had a pretty easy pregnancy relatively speaking) and am excited to meet our daughter soon! I consider myself to be externally fortunate that this has happened, when so many people have such a hard time. I pray that she is born happy and healthy.

I went to my oldest friend's wedding in May. It was everything that a mother could want for a daughter's wedding. The beautiful couple got married on a church on top of the village hill. The village where we grew up together. The church where we sat together during boring carol services and giggled through harvest festivals. She walked down the aisle in a dainty white dress, perfectly fitted, accompanied by her father, blushing with pride at his beautiful daughter. The reception party was elegant, held at a beautiful country house. The bridal party wore delicate teal dresses and roses in their hair. The people at the party were beautiful. Tanned skin, blonde hair, crisp home countries accents. This was the privileged class. They watched the boat races in the summer, played rugby in the spring, went surfing in summer evenings and partied at Babbington House throughout the season. I sat through the wedding, Ben by my side. And I realised, I could never have been that girl that my best friend was that day. I could never be the blushing bride, wearing white on my wedding day. My father will never walk me down the aisle of any church. He will never beam as he proudly stands beside me under the chuppah. This day that she had, this perfect day, could never be mine. And I was okay with it. It is sad. I always wanted to be elegant. To be beautiful. To be adored. To be admired. To be loveable. But my way is not the way of most women. I am not blushing. I am not sweet. I am not beautiful. But I can be fierce. I can be bold. I can be fabulous. That is my way. Watching her say her vows to her new husband under a gossamer veil of white, I realised that this dream would never be mine. I have the opportunity to dream new dreams instead. I have the opportunity to be myself instead of trying to be another woman. I will never be the blushing bride. I can be so much more than that.

Recovering from my back injury. It is great to be able to move again and not be stuck at home. The harsh reality of dealing with a bad back for so long is catching up to me now. A bit more debt, things are tight but you know what? Who gives a shit. I have my health back and I intend on making it stronger everyday that I can. I will not stop. I will not let life get me down for long. I am thankful for the support of Jamie and my family who rallied around and helped me when I needed it most.

Dad died in April and lost my job in June. I was angry and resentful about both. I wish it wouldn't have happened. I loved both. Of course, I'll find a new job but my dad cannot be replaced. I have trouble with my relationship with God. Although I know illness is part of life, I don't understand why us. Why now. Why at all. I know I can handle it but wish I didn't have to. I believe we will repair our relationship but not sure when or how.

I traveled to India - a longtime dream. It affected me deeply. I felt so at home in the colors and the smells and the millions of people. I watched bodies burn on the funeral pyres by the Ganges and it felt OK. It all felt not only OK but amazing, everywhere we went. It was a beautiful first trip to India and I came back glowing and expanded, wearing scarves everywhere and meditating in a deeper, more connected way.

The year was going well till Jared was injured at his day program. Hard to focus on anything else. Nighttimes are hell, grateful for help from Jason and Adam. Do hard to see Jared suffer. So amazing to witness Sandi take care of him with amazing grace,, for 35 years.

August 2015 was a big month. I quit my job at Smart Tan, but Brian and I brought home our lovely Fiona Truffles. Leaving Smart Tan was beyond overdue. Everyday was becoming more constraining, more toxic, and less professional. I couldn't hide my distaste for the way the business was run, and although the leadership recognized my talent and passion, I was upset to learn that they thought of my leaving as a financial relief. I had a lot more to give that company, but it was an abusive relationship that I just had to get out of. The transition wasn't as dramatic as when I left my unhappy relationship with Adam -- then, I felt like I could breathe for the first time in years -- but it has been eye opening. There are people and companies who value my talents and reward my work. It's time for me to work with them instead. As for Fiona, I'm very glad to have her. Training a puppy is time consuming, but she reminds me what it takes to learn: reward and punishment. She also reminds me that rewards don't have to be things. Love, attention and play make her so happy. It's a great reminder to ditch my material fixations in favor of a simpler life -- a connected life.

I moved to a new home in October of 2015. It affected me positively as a my previous roommate was loath to show me much respect. My new roommate and I were much more on the same page when it comes to values such as respect and sharing household duties. And so, in general, I have felt much more at peace living here.

Selling, with my siblings, my parents home, determining how to divey up all the household items, what to keep, what to donate, what to store temporarily and what to auction. I'm relieved it is done with no fights. Grandchild #4, Franklin Diotte Feldner, joined with family on 6/21/15 and I'm so pleased Emily and NJ chose both his first and middle name as both meaningful to me. I am happy the delivery went fine and, thusfar, Franklin is doing great.

My M-I-L has been placed on hospice care, and moved to a nursing home. We've been going there practically daily, and have put off any trips that might take us away from town. How do I feel? I'm glad that she doesn't have to take umpteen trips to the doctor, to the ER, etc...but I'm intensely sorry for her, because she's hovered between living and dying for months, now. I'm worried about my wife, her daughter. And I'm TIRED!

Losing my second child has affected me greatly. I no longer take pregnancy and childbirth for granted. Will it happen for me? Two years ago, I would have said yes, without a doubt. Now, I am not so sure. I don't know if my body can sustain a pregnancy and I don't know if my heart will make it through another loss. Losing these two children has revealed the depths of my grief - or at least as low as I ever hope to go. It has revealed the inadequacies of my mother's emotional faculty, in a way I would have never believed. She has been as supportive as she possibly can, but I am still left wanting. In the moment, she showed sympathy but not empathy. She was so frozen in her own fear of being vulnerable, that she could not help me, literally did not know how. She could not BE with me. I am resentful. Big time. I see other people and all that they have and I feel envy like I never have before. And this was already a well-worn territory for me. I am also grateful and relieved in some ways. This loss has illuminated all of my own failings - specifically in the areas of envy, jealousy and resentment, gratitude (or lack thereof) - and perhaps this gives me another chance to take a whack at these things and to get them more right before bringing another being into this world.

This is tough. Oh, I remember - last December my best friend from high school (who was still a good friend, I hadn't seen her for 2 years, though) overdosed on heroin in LA. When her mom called me and told me, she used that phrase - "Hunter overdosed the other night." I wasn't sure if she meant that she had died. I know some people survive overdoses. I was afraid to ask if she died - surely Hunter's mom wouldn't be calling me had she survived. But I didn't want to give up hope. I coughed out "Did she die?" I know Lisa responded in the affirmative. I don't remember what she said exactly. The thing was so fucked up. I found out on 12/18, the overdose happened on the evening of the 16th. Her birthday was the 12th - December 12th, exactly 1 month after (but one year before) my birthday. I didn't wish her a happy birthday. I think she wished me one on my birthday, but I consciously did not tell her Happy Birthday. It was her birthday, and I thought about telling her Happy Birthday, but I didn't. How did this affect me? This has really, really depressed the hell out of me. I've been going through old papers recently and I keep finding all these notes she wrote me during HS - and I realize now that now, they only matter to me. I'm confused because I don't know if she did it on purpose. We had talked about it several months prior. I'm angry because I keep hearing about Fentanyl and this shot they can give you to fix an overdose, but for some reason Hunter didn't get it. I've heard that when news gets out that someone has died from a Heroin overdose, all the junkies try to get that type of heroin, since they know it's strong. I'm angry, I'm relieved that I haven't ever had a problem with addiction (other than food), I'm ... this is a loss of innocence in a sense, because she is the first friend of mine from HS who's died. I'm conflicted, because I don't know who to tell/what to do. I should do something to honor her memory. I want stuff from her. I want photos. I want purses. I want her writing. I want her guitar. I just want something of her to stay with me.

I retired in February, after almost 30 years at a challenging, exhausting, frustrating job. I counted the days and tortured myself and others in anticipation, finally settling in to my experience of transition. I turned my last 100 days into a reflection of the important and good work I did for children, families and myself. It was such a healing process. I built friendships that will last belong my workplace that I am cherishing. I am so grateful that I was able to retire with a decent pension at age 63. I have so much more life to live and experience.

I started a new job at a company I've been wanting to work with for years. I'm very grateful that I have been provided this opportunity as I get to put my best foot forward and work with people that I consider friends.

My marriage ended last year - the relationship ended on its' own, on its' own time, but I was the one who formally initiated the end of the marriage. It turns out that in hindsight, I am grateful and relieved. At the time, it was terrible, like I was a failure for not being able to hold it together through sheer force of will. I felt resentful of him for "making" me have to be the one to do it. But I know that it was the best choice for me, and I am doing so much better now that I am not flailing around trying to save my failing marriage anymore.

A significant event that has happened in the past year is that me and my ex are back together, living in the same house, after being apart for 6 years! Our kids are ecstatic

After many years of tension and unhappiness, my immediate family and I decided to forgo Christmas and Thanksgiving with our extended family; meaning cousins and an Aunt. We've been going for years and have been unhappy doing it, but last year, in 2014, we finally told them that we're not coming. It was a relief. We drive several hours to get there and back and then the day seems to be all about them. They ask very little about how we are or what we've been doing lately. Alternatively, they drive the several hours to our city on a regular basis to go shopping (it's a bigger city) and never ask to see us. At first we were hurt, but now we're mostly relieved. It was a relief because I'm the one who does the driving and I was glad to be able to enjoy my holiday without thinking of the drive to and fro.

Two major things have happened this year. First I found out that after a short time attempting to conceive that I will be having a baby in Jan 2016. Secondly my brother was diagnosed rather suddenly with AML. One joyous event has bee shadowed by a frightening one. It's been hard to be excited about the pregnancy especially with my family as I would like to be because the focus is on my brother's struggles. It has definitely put the mundane annoyances of life in perspective. I'm sure he didn't go to the dr one afternoon expecting to be hospitalized for over three months. The prospect of parenting has made me hyper aware of the things I'd like to do better or differently than we're done in my own childhood. I've done a lot of soul searching about what is really important this past year.

My father, a "recovered" alcoholic who has been booze free for several decades, called me out of the blue, really upset, to apologize to me for the way he treated me when I was really young (when he was an alcoholic) and when I was a teenager/young adult (he was sober by then). It was part of his "making amends" step. He basically said that he realizes now that he was way too hard on me (true). He's been going through some rough times, and he's been amping up his AA-related work. I'm certainly grateful that he said these things. I told him as much, and I told him that I hope this helped him, and that I totally forgive him and he should no longer carry any guilt or regret related to any of this. However, it's fascinating how much this has affected me in unexpected ways. I feel a mix of gratefulness and sadness and anger and regret and wonder and confusion. It's brought up a lot of issues for me. I find myself trying to recall specifics about the ways in which he treated me. I wonder how much I've blocked out. I will say that I think it's clear he wanted this to improve our somewhat distant relationship. So far, for me, it hasn't, but maybe over time it will. I do know that this makes me look at my own failings and, if nothing else, redoubles my desire to not fuck up my own kids in certain ways (if I ever do decide to have kids).

Month-long vacation at Oak Island, NC with family and friends left me feeling both grateful and inspired.

I'm approaching the anniversary of the day I nearly accidentally hurt myself quite badly. It's been a steady progression back up from that lowest point. I'm relieved that it's so much better. I'm apprehensive that it's not fully resolved yet. I still have bad days, but they are the exception not the rule now. Between then and now I have moved continents, started a company (and just pledged to rent a shop in Brixton as on Saturday!) broken my heart against forgiving shores, started therapy, spoken about semiotics at the V&A, made new friends, made new games, gotten closer to my partner again. People have faith in me, I am loved. This is all I need to survive. Today I am happy.

I now work for Enterprise. It has actually been about 8 months. I just moved into a new office in fact so its kind of a new and refreshing experience for me. I am very grateful for the job and I hope I can go bigger and better, but of course by working for it :)

After 44 years, I discovered the place where I understand what I can do, what I am capable of, professionally. I finally feel able to, with confidence, make statements that I am 100% confident in. And when I"m not, to understand how to accept challenges to my beliefs. The challenge now is to do the same for personal life. That seems to be much harder.

I've had so many... But let me record this one: I admitted being depressed and asked for help. I am taking anti-depressants as well as my usual talk therapy. I felt so embarassed and vulnerable, crying in my doctor's office. It was hard to swallow my pride in always being able to cope, to take care of myself, and go ahead and take the meds. But it also felt like an act of supreme self care. And it has helped so much.

My wife and I moved across the country from our home of 8 years in Brooklyn, NY back to her hometown in Tulsa, OK. We drove our two cats in a rental car (which was a hell of human and cat anxiety speeding down the interstate in a mini SUV). We got here two weeks before our belongings and stayed in my in-laws house for that time. I left behind a thriving doula practice and comfortable massage contractor position in a practice with other massage therapists that I loved to get massage from. We left behind dear dear friends who are our chosen family. A neighborhood we loved to walk through but that was changing before our very eyes, including the fact that we were being rapidly priced out. We also left behind a job that my wife hated and couldn't live with any longer. I am feeling all of the feelings now. I'm grateful my wife was finally able to leave the job she hated so much. I'm grateful to be around her family here, and to have met all the incredible new folks I've gotten to know since coming back to Tulsa. I'm relieved to not have to make as much money as we did before. I'm resentful that I left my thriving doula practice just as it was starting to blow up, but I'm less resentful than I was six months ago. I'm inspired by the new community I've found here, and the opportunities to make a much bigger impact on the folks around me. When I really think about it, this was the best decision we could have made, inclusive of all the very hard things about moving across country. I can say confidently that I don't regret it.

The first thing that pops in my head is putting Prince down. Maybe because it was only a couple weeks ago. I knew it would be hard. In some ways it was harder than I thought and in other ways it was easier. I was grateful to the veterinarian and the staff for the professional and caring way they handled things. Prince was obviously in so much pain and I knew it was the right thing to relieve him of that pain. But it is a little over two weeks and I still miss him very much and I still cry almost every day. He was the best dog ever.

My 50th year has shown me that I am a survivor and can handle anything life brings. I'm still here and I must start taking better care of myself if I want to maintain reasonably good health and continued youth for years to come!

I went to Peru in 2013. I am so grateful for the experience. It introduced me to Victor, my love. It improved my Spanish. It made me more adventurous but also more aware. It has inspired me to continue to make decisions based on corazonados and to continue traveling and connecting with new people.

I decided to simplify my life by removing activities and people that were no longer bringing me joy. I am relieved to have more time to dedicate to specific people who are important to me. I am inspired and energized and hopeful for new opportunities.

I broke my neck and hurt other parts of my body while trying to fulfill a psychotic notion that I was to kill myself to bring home the crown for "my team" The subsequent hospitalizations brought me ever deeper into paranoia and fear. I feared I was polluting the world with my breath, that I had ebola, that there was a war going on between dark and light and I was stuck in the middle. On reflection I am grateful I am not paralyzed. I regret going down that road, but how could I avoid it? It's left me bent, broken, and scarred

The most significant experience that comes to mind this year was losing my Grandpa H. It was such a whirlwind of mixed emotions because he had been struggling with Alzheimer's/dementia. Even though we were incredibly sad, my entire family was also extremely relieved. His quality of life had been poor, and it was a major strain on my Grandma. It was difficult to see my dad wrestling with all of those emotions as well. I think the most powerful part of it for me was when my mom called and said that Grandpa wasn't expected to last more than a couple of hours. She said that if I wanted to say good-bye I should travel to Quincy right away. Without even thinking it through I said, "That's ok. I already said good-bye a long time ago." In my mind I had already come to terms with the fact that Grandpa was no longer there, and that was in the last year. I might be regretful that I had never verbalized anything to him regarding the matter. Visiting him in the hospital is the closest I have. When the case manager was in asking him questions it was just Grandpa, Grandma, and me. When she asked who Grandma was he said, "Well, that's my wife." When asked what her name was, he struggled to come up with the answer, "Margaret." Then she asked who I was. He looked at me with love, confusion, and a deep amount of remorse for not knowing. He knew that I was someone familiar, but he could not give her an answer. I said, "That's ok if you don't know Grandpa. It doesn't matter." Because the look on his face said it all. And I hope that in that one interaction he knew that I understood. On my facebook I wrote: Today I'm remembering my Grandpa. Growing up, Grandpa H was my hero. He knew the names of all of the trees in our neighborhood and helped me make a leaf collection book. He helped me with my geometry homework. He knew how to build stilts with some pieces of this and that in the garage. He taught me about rocks, coins, and history. He told me funny stories about when he was a kid and practiced his clarinet in the bathroom. He hand made the most beautiful doll houses with miniature working light fixtures and doors. He always had a stash of jelly beans by his chair, and saved some of the black licorice ones for me because they were our favorite. He was a sweet, charming soul and I am going to miss him very much.

You can't track your life the way you want it just by wanting it. You must do. And be willing to fail at what you do. I want to keep that fixated in my mind over the next year - failure is part of the staircase to success. In anything. You have to fall down because otherwise you can't climb higher. I am grateful for this and am trying to fight the negative emotions my primitive self keeps bringing to the forefront. Be sober. Be clear. Focus and love what you are doing because life is about Joyful Awareness. When you let the negative emotions take control, your "present" aka the realest thing we have, is lessen, worsened, filled with stress and anger. Life is better on the positive side of the scale. And not only that, even more than that, it's that joyful awareness that makes life worth it, that makes living in the present a worthwhile experience. Hold onto that over the next year.

I have been able to allow my spiritual side to flourish. I was honored to be on the committee who selected an amazing minister for our church and for that I am excited and relieved. I am inspired and celebrate how our church is growing, more accepting and getting ready to move in such a wonderful way effecting a community that has been disenfranchised. I watch God move through and within a dedicated group of people who strive to serve and continually believe in miracles!!

I think I finally have my dream job- head coach for all of the Metro Area Ys. I am grateful, relived AND inspired but at times it feels like there are an awful lot of people who want to see this fail. I know some of that is my fault. I need to find ways to finesse things and not piss people off all the time : )

I went scuba diving for the first time in my life and I was TERRIFIED! I have been promising Julian for almost ten years and since we were in Hawaii, I knew this would be the time. I had a quick one hour walk-through and then bam! Hit the water! It took a few attempts and luckily the scuba instructor was super patient. J. looked so cute waiting for me on the ocean floor. It was such an exhilarating experience! I felt like I was flying! And I even swan next to a sea turtle for about ten seconds, which was like seeing a freakin' unicorn. My adrenalin was so pumped afterwards. I can't wait to see what else I can do.

I got pregnant and am 1 month away from the birth of my first child! My husband and I are very excited and a little nervous about the journey ahead.

During this past year I have experienced a tremendous number of losses. It was my first year living without my mother, who passed in June 2014. It was also my first year living without my daughter, who started college on the other side of the country. I lost a dear friend in October and my cherished mother-in-law in April. My work was full of losses too, both because of someone who I had worked closely with who was asked to leave and because of changes to my role that were difficult. How did it affect me? I am still working that out because sometimes you have to just get through something before you can process and comes to terms with it.

I started dating the love of my life on February 3 and I am grateful for her presence and love with which she showers me everyday. It's hard to remember what life was like before she came into my life. She inspires me to be the best version of myself because she honors every part of me, the darkest parts, the parts that hurt, the parts that no one has ever seen. She comforts me, invigorates me, delights in me, and loves me unconditionally. I never used to think that love existed until I fell in love with her. Every day with her is significant because she gives me more and more reasons to love her. She has changed my life and has left an everlasting impact on my mind, heart and soul.

I went into business with Sarah and am really having fun cooking with her

I had nose surgery and even though was something I wanted was probably the wrong time to do it. I regret only because I didn't work the change on no mind before doing it. It's so imperceptible people almost won't see I had surgery but I still don't feel like I'm myself and although last year has been a though year with work and the end of a relationship I think the surgery affected me the most.

I started my company in March of this year - very significant. And also have been dealing with two amazing life changing job offers, one of which I plan to accept during the high holidays. It's been a roller coaster, to say the least, and I've been grateful, relieved, resentful, inspired, and a whole host of other emotions during the process... It's affected me in that it has given great opportunities for personal growth. Managing a growing company, clients, staff, budgets, contractors, and so many other things presents challenges nearly every day and I am constantly faced with who I am in the face of these challenges and who I want to be. It's also offering the promise of financial security IF I am able to keep it up and maintain/grow our projects/clients And it's making me look at what happens when I say yes - both good and bad - and start to make choices as I truly don't have enough time in the day anymore for everything on my plate. What can I give to an assistant? What do I want to do myself? How much does my fitness matter? Friends? Work? Sleep? This is a constant struggle, born from an abundance of opportunity. I am grateful.

It made me sad. It involved change, my daughter moved to a new city to take a new job and has a new boyfriend. I think it was too much change at one time and created stress for her and me as her parent. I could do little to help her and realized it is her decision and she has to live with the consequences. It is hard to let go as a parent of a young adult.

After 15 years of freelancing, I went into a full time corporate job this year. It completely turned my lifestyle on it's head and the great part is I was actually ready. I love working with the people and teams I get to, the clients that have a trust in the company I'm at and therefore me right away. I've lost a huge amount of what I considered my free time, but I'm adjusting and life is full. The successes have been fast and thrilling. The opportunities just at my fingertips. No longer is there as much hustle as there is work - and in this chapter that's what I want to do "the work". I look forward to what is next.

GETTING MARRIED!!!! I feel grateful to have such a great guy for my husbear. And I'm so grateful we had the year to mesh/mold/grow together in the process. My parents and friends saved the wedding many times over, including when grandma was in the hospital and no one told me until AFTER hair and makeup were over. I am inspired by how awesome my friends are who came or shared their own experiences in relationships, and I am hopeful to continue honoring our vows, which are brand new still! I will respect, listen and love Ben, and he will do the same to me.

My 22-year-old car broke the timing chain. It's the 2nd time in the 20 years I've owned it. This time, the repair costs much more than the car is worth. For the first time in my life, I have car payments. The past few years, I have been enjoying, finally, being able to say, 'yes, I can get this dental work done and if my insurance doesn't cover it, I can. Things may get a little tight, but I can do it.' With so much of my pay now going to my car payments, I have to watch every penny again. I miss my car. It wasn't a great car, but it was reliable for years and it was my first major purchase.

Having my first home break-in was really scary. It shook loose a security that I wasn't aware I possessed and I still haven't recovered it. Theoretically I know I'm just a statistic but emotionally, I have not been able to move past the fear that it will happen again. Every time I hear a weird noise downstairs (or upstairs), I panic, convinced someone is in the house.

My son was born and everything in my life changed. It has made everything harder, but everything more worthwhile. I am very grateful and he inspires me all the time.

Poz passing away. It was huge because he was our first dog. The first dog of the family. He was around before the house, before the girls. He was always there for Sarah when we would have our arguments and fights. He was a pup till the day he died and the pictures we see of him now close to the day he died show him so old, but in real life we didnt see that.

This past year was eventful. I had a child and lost a parent. I guess I would describe myself as ready to move on from all of it. I'm a good parent, and that's true for infants and babies, but becomes more and more true the more verbally capable the kid gets. I'm looking forward to my son talking. To challenging him, and pushing him verbally. It's what my father did with me, and what he would want for his grandchildren.

I had a major fall resulting in tibial plateau fracture and spent 14 weeks non-weight bearing. After 4 months I am just learning to walk again. Surprisingly I worked through most of the recovery without being angry or resentful. Think it has inspired me to be more patient and to appreciate the simpler things in life like walking that so many of us just seem to take for granted.

A) An Intensive weekend with my mentor where I was willing to be honest, be challenged and meet the rough edges, walk through fears and doubts, face past imprints and choose, recommit to a new identity. B) Speaking up with my husband re requests/ needs, places I felt hurt and needed to say so. C) Going down to the river ( most of May) to bless and release, be nourished

I had the opportunity to travel to Russia this past year. It made me realize how much I love to learn new things, how much I love to travel with a partner or two and not a big group. It also made me realize (again) that I like to be in charge or in control of myself and where I go, what I do. :-) I am always grateful to travel and experience life in a different way. I always learn about myself!

A experience that happened to me last year was my parents telling me and my siblings that they are getting a divorce. This affected me emotionally. I am mostly shocked instead of grateful.

My grand uncle passed away a few months ago at age 92. I hadn't seen him in a while, and I feel bad about that. He was my last relative from his generation, and there were questions I wanted to ask him about my grandmother and other relatives. I didn't ask him when I saw him because after a stroke he had a few years ago he was sometimes confused, and I didn't want to befuddle him. I should have made more of an effort to visit him and speak with him and now it is too late.

I got a raise. I was really surprised, because my employer isn't known for giving raises outside of across-the-board, cost of living raises. I knew my supervisor was working on improving my title (yes, I work for a bureaucracy), but she never said anything about money. So when I received an email -- right before the holidays! -- saying that, along with my new title, my salary would now be X, I was surprised and happy and so very grateful. It must have taken a lot of red tape and paperwork for my supervisor. Just as important, it let me know that they really do value my work, and that might mean even more than the money. We all want to be appreciated.

In December, I found out that I was pregnant, but in January, I had a miscarriage that required lots of medical intervention. It was awful and probably one of the worst experiences of my life. I was very depressed and it affected my ability to do well in school (I am a medical student). However, it did somehow bring my husband and I closer, and our marriage is stronger than ever.

I felt significantly seen for who I am and significantly projected on to by people who don't have the wisdom to know what is their stuff/about them. It caused me to deepen my sense that is mighty important not to absorb other people's take on reality. Their's is their's Mine is mine It was painful. It did show me how insecure and angry I can be. How I can run replays, pointlessly over and over. It makes me appreciate the power in the beauty of nature, meditation, music and exercise, good friends and family/people who know me.

This year has been tumultuous, both good and bad. One the good side is the HOUSE. What an amazing achievement and I love it more every day. It fits our family and our lifestyle and it a real home. 10 years in the process to get here, and I am so proud. Also good was the final reconciliation with my son. The fact that he stayed with us the last week before leaving for NY brought the whole experience full circle and reunified our family. It was hell while we were living through it but we survived and are moving forward as a family I am so proud of the initiative he has shown in his own life and support his ability to live and work in NYC. Hopefully my doggedness and perseverance in working to achieve what I wanted most- a home has rubbed off on my kids a bit and his drive to be independent is reflective of this.

I have had many significant experiences over the last year, but one that stands out to me in particular happened on July 31st, the night of the full blue moon. This day is very significant to me because it is the anniversary of my father's death. This particular date marked two years. Year two has been extraordinarily more difficult than year one when it comes to my grief. It feels as though the layer of shock has worn off and the veil of numbness has been lifted. The grief feels insurmountable. As an early twenty-something who has lost both parents, I feel completely isolated and alone, and I cannot relate to my peers. I have attempted to find grief groups to find people who have experienced something similar, but none of the members of any group were quite as young as I am (which the griever in me would resent because, you know, they still got 40 years with their parents), or if they were they had only lost one parent. The experience of not being able to find a grief group which catered to my particular experience alienated me even further from others. As one would imagine, I did not handle this looming anniversary very well. The night beforehand, I drank a disgusting amount of alcohol, blacked out, and woke up on the couch with no idea how I got there (I learned later that my two friends had carried me from the bathroom floor where I had passed out after vomiting). Waking up obscenely hungover on the day of my father's death felt strangely appropriate, though, like a physical representation of how my insides felt. After sobering up for a few hours, I drove home from my friend's house and sobbed. I sobbed at the awful sun beating down on me through my window. I sobbed at my damned A/C for not working. I sobbed at my hangover and at myself for being stupid enough to get that drunk. I sobbed at my utter alone-ness. I left my boss a message saying that I wouldn't be able to make it to work that day, and then I sobbed about that. A couple of days earlier, I had been asked at the last minute by a friend of mine to do a gig on the night of the 31st at a famous musician's house in Laurel Canyon. It didn't pay but it sounded like a lovely experience and the music was easy, so I agreed. So, after a long nap, I awoke (still hungover), sat around for a while hating myself, and then mustered up the energy to get dressed and go do this gig. It was a beautiful house filled with very stylish, beautiful, and important people. I felt like a vomit-stained gorilla. But, I sang with my friend and her choir, made a few more friends, and overall the night was a success and a beautiful distraction from the hurt in my soul. It had become late, so I decided it was time to head home from the party. I walked up to my friend who called me for the gig to say goodbye. She was in a conversation with another woman and she introduced us. "This is Lauren, she's a REAL opera singer; she's performed at Walt Disney Concert Hall!" (she often introduced me this way, it always caught me off guard). "And Lauren, this is Beth, she's put out lots of amazing records." Immediately after the introduction, something strange happened. I had never met this woman before and she had plenty of friends at this party, but she asked me: "May I be really rude?" "Sure." I wasn't sure what to expect. "Would you please drive me home? I live just around the corner." "Oh, yes of course!" It seemed very strange to me that she chose me, a complete stranger to drive her. But soon we were leaving the party, she made the rounds saying goodbye to all of her friends, none of whom I knew, and I followed her like a shadow. As we were walking to my car we talked a little bit about music, all very pleasant and light conversation. I told her I would listen to her stuff when I got home. As I dropped her off in front of her house she said that she hoped we'd see each other again. I said I was sure we would. When I got home I looked her up. It turned out that she was very well known. Her wikipedia article came up in the search and I read it, and when I got to the "early life" section, my eyes darted to the words, "her father left the family when she was 11 and died a couple of years later. Then her mother died when she was 19". My heart began to race. My prayers had been answered. She was one of my people. I had not yet found anyone at all who had lost both of their parents at a young age, and here she was. And of all people, it was a famous singer who I met at a gig on the blue moon ON my dad's death anniversary. The serendipity of the whole evening suddenly clicked in my brain. I managed to get in contact with her a few days later, describing my situation and asking if she'd be willing to meet up and share our experiences. We have not yet met in person, but we have been corresponding about a meeting date in the near future. I don't know what this friendship has in store for me, but even just the fact that there is someone out there who has survived what I am going through is enough to inspire me to keep going. It is even more encouraging that she is a successful musician, and that she has accomplished the goals that I hope to someday accomplish. This whole experience does not feel like a mere coincidence. I do think that someone out there heard my prayers to find someone who had also been orphaned at an early age, and they were answered on that night of all nights.

I backpacked with 2 of my best friends for 3 days and 30 miles in the PNW. I am relieved that I lived and didn't experience any major issues. I'm proud that I set up the route and assisted with the planning. Completion inspires me to want to go on more trips and to push myself further. It also makes me feel confident that I can handle things beyond my comfort zone. It has reassured me that I am happy with who I am and who I am becoming.

Experienced a lot of marital and family strife. Dealing with each conflict was exhausting yet enlightening. In the beginning I was just reactive and defensive. I feel I have learned how to be more open and to listen and soak in the problems that are presented to me by my family members as opposed to being judgemental and resentful. I still have those feelings but if I allow enough time and mental space I gain clarity and respect for the other person's experience and feelings and am able to more openly communicate my point of view without discounting theirs.

My grandmother passed away in November and I was there. She was 99 and lived a life full of family and community and I miss her every day. My mom called me on a Friday night and said "they think your grandmother has 8-10 days left". It caught me a bit by surprise because she was not sick with any specific issue - apparently she was just fading. As I sat dumbstruck on the couch my partner suggested that I go out there for the weekend to visit. I could take a day off of work and I would get the chance to say goodbye. Initially I balked at the idea. Buy a plane ticket last minute? Uproot everything? I'd never done anything like that before. But eventually I realized that I had absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain by going. So I called my mom back and asked her if she could pick me up. She hadn't been planning on driving over to my grandmother's house until Monday but said she could rearrange her schedule to pick me up Saturday afternoon. I bought my ticket and woke up early the next morning. The airport was eerily quiet - I guess everyone wants to get out of New York City on Friday evenings. My flights were uneventful, and I landed a bit early. I called my mom when I got off the plane and she answered the phone with an anxious tone of voice and told me that my grandmother had spiked a fever and they weren't sure if she was going to make it through the afternoon. I grabbed a bite to eat at the airport, hopped in the car and we drove as fast as we safely (and legally) could to get to my grandmother's rural farm. My mom had missed her father's death and had always regretted it so the importance of making it in time was doubly important. We walked in the door to find that we had made it in time. My grandmother was conscious and in and out of lucidity. My mom went over to say hello to her right away while I hung back, letting her have her moment. My grandmother's favorite home health care aid came over and told me that my grandmother had been very anxious and had been voicing concerns about not being a good grandmother. Apparently this type of anxiety is common for people who are dying - as someone who struggles with anxiety myself, I completely get it. And so when my mother moved away to talk to her siblings I leaned over my grandmother's bed and said hello. Her entire face lit up as she smiled and said my name with a joy I will never forget. I said to her: "grandma, I just want you to know that I am SO lucky to have you as my grandma". My grandmother paused and I was wondering if she'd heard me when she said: "no. I'm the lucky one." I heard her say other things before she slipped into a coma later that night but in my heart, those are her last words to me. They are the epitome of who she was - the ultimate carer and giver, while so grateful of all she had received. My grandmother spent the next 24 hours in a coma before she ultimately passed away early in the morning on the day I was supposed to fly back. I spent much of the intervening day listening to her breathing. I'd heard of the "death rattle", as it is sometimes called, but I'd never heard it in person. It is a sound I will never forget. The hospice nurse said we should tell her it was ok to let go so I did this, even though it was hard. The nurse also said we should leave her alone for periods of time in case she didn't want to go with someone there so we did that, even though it was hard. Though my grandmother spent most of her life on a farm in rural Nebraska, in her mind she was one of the most adventurous people I've ever met. She wanted to know about everything. She'd keep me on the phone for an hour and a half asking questions about my job or the latest trip I took or what New York City was like. I sent her postcards once/week for her last six months or so documenting anything in my life that I thought would be interesting. She kept them in organized by date in a binder and apparently would flip through it every now and again, just to remember. Although I miss her every day (and especially when I travel), I imagine that I carry a piece of her with me in my inquisitiveness, my curiosity and my generosity. I couldn't have asked to get to know such a special person. I was the lucky one.

I've had a few big ones, and they've all left me feeling a pretty similar progression of emotions. I moved to Australia to be with someone and I moved back to the US to stop being with him. They both were clearly the right choice. But they both left me feeling very set back a couple notches. I'm struggling to feel like a functioning whole person after all of it. And I'm not sure where to go from here.

Renting and sharing a studio with Karen and Wallis at Ballard Works. I learned how to really work at my art, got to participate in Art Walk and made good friends. It was a year of incredible growth. I am inspired to continue to work, wherever my studio happens to be.

I started work at the hospital of my dreams. A year ago I thought I would be a stay-a-home mom for foster children. Now, I'm working in a position that is beyond what I dreamed for myself. I wanted to be a medical interpreter. I wanted to work at here. This is the 4th job I've interviewed for here. Even thought I'm not an interpreter, I think God was preparing me for just the right position. I'm extremely grateful - for the job itself, for the people who supported me along the way as I was trying to figure out what to do for work, for the really hard lessons that I needed to learn in order to do this job well. In reality, it's not all wonderful euphoria - I often have to do things that I don't enjoy doing as part of my job. But, I'm glad that I have this opportunity and I will try to learn as much as I possibly can from it.

My husband died suddenly on the last day of July. It's been terrible for my daughter and myself, and also very tough on the older kids and Rick's family. I am angry, scared and feel terribly alone and concerned for the future. I hope we will find strength.

January 6, I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. I immediately went into my strong place internally. I don't think I ever cried. After many tests it was determined that there was one small tumor and it was caught early so it was named Stage 1. I was so relieved to not have to have chemo or radiation. I waited to tell my daughter until I had all the information and could tell her from a strong place. Surgery for a bi-lateral mastectomy was on March 4. I had many people praying for me and could feel the power. It was like I was in a hammock, being carried. Reconstruction was September 2 and though, it may need some tweaking, the major part is done. I have been so grateful to have caught this so early and from what I understand the chance of reoccurance is minimal. I do have some fear lurking around deep down but have not been giving it any power. I give God the credit for the strength and peace. I'm trying to get inspired to really clean up my diet and to be mindful of what I eat. I'm learning and hopefully it will all kick in at some point. I know just how fortunate I am.

We had a baby! It changed our lives in a lot of ways...some good, some difficult (which can still be good). I am incredibly grateful. Our daughter is beautiful and so fun!

I went home, spent 4 months in Virginia, felt the relief and settled comfort of a familiar environment and place. My definition of home expanded significantly to include all of the US. It was a really positive experience; I learned to believe that I could become a veterinarian. I had fun! I performed my first surgeries. My patients were released. I missed Lola and papa a LOT and realized I did not want to be without them. It was just so incredibly good to be HOME. Thank you. I am very very greatful. Very. I had my 24 hour vacation in ny, went really home, felt lonely there, but in the hotel room in the morning lazing with the snow outside and that yellowy light, I felt so so SO at home. And driving into the snow bank on Central Park West, having the dad and then the wheaties men stop and help me, I felt so cared for and taken care of and at home in the way i only feel when I am there. or only have felt there. It was wonderful. The UN. But mostly that just delicious perfect morning. I met the swedish doctor in copenhagen. ... but I didn't really meet him. Question 2. I went to pick up papa, and survived a summer of insane pressure and work, tired, very isolated, feeling like no one even tries to understand, and everyone expects too much of me because they don#t understand. exhausted. greatful for germany. for buch. for getting papa to safety. for corfu. for maria and kyriakos. for that beautiful town and the friendly people. I realized again or more deeply that no one is there to help, that papa's family will not do anything, even in the most dire of circumstances, except maybe pledge money if the cost is inordinate. but with normal costs they won't help. with real things that are needed and with comming to my aid they will not help. i am alone. but maybe i can make it alone. ? maybe.

I found a new job that is closer to home, pays more, and I do more of what I love. I stood up for myself at my former job and took a chance interviewing for this one. I am grateful that I got it.

I mustered the courage to break up with my boyfriend of two years in a healthy, respectful way that keeps our twenty-year friendship in tact. I've never been the one to instigate a breakup. I've only ever been dumped. So, this was a refreshing step toward maturity after two divorces. Now that it's done, I'm a little sorry I didn't pull the trigger sooner. I've learned to go with my gut and not put off important things in hopes of waiting for perfect timing. I feel relieved and happy that we're still pals, and he was relieved too (he reports that he likes our relationship better this way). I also feel inspired to take steps on my own behalf to craft the emotional life I want without automatically handing over the reigns and to take responsibility for my own feelings (and to feel them). To mix metaphors—I discovered that I'm the captain of my own ship, and now I'll set my own course.

Being at Jerusalem Pride when the stabbings occurred. I felt proud as a Jew that I was there, sadness and anger at the tragedy. I was inspired to do more in the coming year to unite people and support individuals and groups who are oppressed.

I had a mole removed in the spring that turned out to be melanoma in situ (stage 0). I go to the derm every year for skin checks but certainly wasn't expecting it. At stage 0, there's virtually no chance of it spreading after the excision so I'm considered cured. I was terrified earlier this year, of getting more, I know it increases my risk but considering how dangerous melanoma is in other stages, I'm incredibly grateful that we caught it at stage 0. We easily could have left that mole alone for another year or two and who knows what would have happened then. I value my life and want the chance to live a long time! I'm certainly being even more careful in the sun than I've ever been before (though I've always been careful) - shade seeking, hats, long sleeved coverups etc. Makes me remember that life is short and precious and how fortunate I am that we caught it so soon.

I got married. I am incredibly grateful to have found such a perfect partner in Meg, and the wedding itself was the best day of my life. (And I made 170 people cry at the ceremony. Not bad.) I'm relieved it's over, insofar as it was a huge expense and time suck up through planning-- but I love being married and taking on each new day as part of this incredible team of two.

I graduated College after a while. It really gave me a confidence that was lacking. Shortly after, I felt so much better about myself and it showed in the relationships that I made with people afterwards. It goes without saying that I was extremely relieved after graduation.

Adam moved to Portland (from Bend), and it makes me sad, but I understand that it is good for him.

My father died - at home, in peace, surrounded by the people he loved best. Being with him so often in the last five months of his life, the five months of hospice that emerged miraculously from our initial 6 week estimate, drove home for me the importance of being the person he raised me to be, the ongoing impact pf my childhood on my current mid-adulthood, and the crucial closeness he and I had always shared but which was sometimes obscured by the rest of our lives. I am grateful for the time with him, relieved that he is no longer suffering and will never have to suffer again, and so, so sad to be without him except in my memories. I am also newly appreciative of how my husband's wonderful fathering is likely to affect our own daughter.

I significant experience that has happened to me in the past year is my brother got married. It made me a happier person knowing my brother has a soul mate and can be happy now. I am truly grateful for him getting married and i feel relieved that he now has someone he can talk to about absolutely anything, good or bad. i am not resentful at all and am inspired to find a good friend

I resent my breakup. Blah blah blah I probably learned something, but I really resent it. I'm angry and hurt and I couldn't even bring myself to go to my usual shul today, that's how much I'm still hurting. I feel that it has poisoned everything.

Dad died. Obviously I am sad at his passing, but I think it is also quite a bit of "for whom the bell tolls" kind of thing going on. I'm sure if you had asked Sid he would have said he was ready to die, but he did not want to die. Still, towards the end his quality of life had decreased pretty significantly. As a result, I'm sad for his passing because it means I won't have my father to commiserate with, but I'm not really sad for him if that makes sense. I spoke at his service and that was pretty hard. I am very glad we chose to name Sydney after Sid. I knew it was a good idea when we did it, but now that he is gone the power of her carrying on his name is more apparent.

For the first time in years, I actually spent two weeks on holiday away from home, down in Cornwall. It was like a pre-taste of retirement. I realised that I like my leisure as a contrast to work. Without meaningful work to do, I think I would find retirement very challenging.

Loosing my front tooth. The result of very bad orthodontia as a kid I feel old the fake tooth doesn't match at all and is awkward. Makes me want to stay inside alone even more

I applied and got a fabulous new job doing exactly what I want to do. At times I pushed my way forward while other times I needed to sit patiently for the next step. I am soooooo grateful to have this experience. The people I am.meeting and the meaningful change we are making make for a proud time for us. The challenges continue to test my willingness to remain centered and open to serendipity.

3pm, April 2, 2015--Birth of Ada Frances, my first grandchild. My daughter invited me and her husband's mom to be in the delivery room--I held her leg just like in "Call the Midwife"! It was exciting to watch a birth--the first time for me, as both of my girls were born via C-section. The following day, both new parents were exhausted so I got to hold Ada for 3 hours. I didn't expect to feel so connected to a grandchild. I spend a lot of time online looking at photos my daughter posts. At first, she posted daily; it's down to about once or twice a week now at just over 5 months. I worry about my daughter. She seems anxious. My mom, the great-grandma!, and I visited at the end of May and my daughter seemed quite agitated. She hasn't talked with me about it, which I feel sad about. I'm also feeling sad and disappointed that she asked me not to visit when I had time this summer, even knowing that I wouldn't have time again until late December. I miss my daughter and my granddaughter and both of them are growing up now. I worry about my little girl and want the best for her, her family, and our baby Ada.

Oh goodness, lots of things have happened this year. Dear, sweet Grandma passed away :'( My little buddy, Tootie, passed away. Richard tried to break up with me several times and finally ended it at the end of July. Yoshi the bunny got really sick and had to be put to sleep. :'( I celebrated 10 years of work at my job. I've felt a large assortment of feelings. Sadness and inspiration at Grandma passing, plus a little relief only because she had been doing so poorly over much of the previous year, and I know she was ready to go. So much sadness and grief over Tootie, I miss that little cat so so much. :'( Lots of anger and grief over Richard breaking up with me. I was a complete wreck for the better part of a month. Now I feel empowered and inspired and motivated to do better. I am an independent woman and I intend to make the best of my circumstances. I am in the process of getting the house cleaned and repaired, and I hope to do some interior work and paint, and eventually start back up on my art and possibly get into photography and sewing. I am excited to start this next chapter of my life, but still feel a little lost about what to do with the last chapter. I am trying to be hopeful, at least.

This past December, after a grueling 6 month period of searching and speaking and too much thinking about my future, I started my first full-time job. I started working as the Special Events & Group Visits Coordinator at the Rubin Museum of Art. And I love it. More than anything else, I feel grateful. I feel grateful to be in a space that encourages open communication, mindfulness, being in the present. I feel grateful to have supervisors that I can be a real human being around, to be in an office that welcomes music, quirks and mistakes. I feel grateful for the balance that working for two different departments give me- a stable, strategic, administrative side of dealing with and scheduling groups, and a hectic, unpredictable and fast-paced side of scheduling site visits and locking in contracts and producing beautifully unique and extravagant private events that offer a little something special to guests as they enter the Museum doors. Like anyone else, there are things about my job that leave me frustrated, let down and confused. I question the rules, I question the authority, I question everything a bit too much. The fact that I feel I have room to do this, though, brings me back to my initial feeling of gratitude. Being an early 20-something who is always striving to seize the moment, experience the most that I can and be the best that I can, wondering if I am making the most out of the situation, I can honestly say that I am not feeling like I should, at this moment, be volunteering half way around the world, picking up and traveling just to see what's out there. Soon, sure. Eventually, absolutely. Right now, though, I feel good and hopeful that I am where I am supposed to be. I remind myself everyday that my job is just a job, that it does not define who I am and that my title does not matter and that each experience I take on is as meaningful as I decide it is going to be. That being said, I love what I am doing and I hope that I am giving back to it as much as I am getting.

The two significant events that come to mind: 1. pain from spinal issues increased sharply. i am angry, resentful, grieving, depressed and sometimes hopeless. 2. i have started to meditate regularly. even though many days i am barely even connecting to the recordings i listen to, i have had some great moments and some breakthrough. 21 days and counting!

We have found a housemate. I am inspired and my loneliness is relieved. Kelly has started with resentful, but moving towards a challenge to accept. I need to share more with an other person than mi esposa is willing to share with herself. This is not even sexual - just spending time around food and exercise lifts me up.

This spring, I interviewed for what I believed to be my dream job-- something quite different than the work I do every day. In the process, God revealed to me the hard truth that I have spent the last fifteen years succeeding in a vocation that I do not love. Though the particular position did not pan out, I have decided that this will be my last year in my current field. Even if I do not secure a new job before I must leave my current one, I am committed to leaving in 2016. I don't want to turn forty without having tried to do something I truly believe I am wired to do. This decision is both frightening and exciting, sobering and inspiring. I am walking by faith, not by sight. Like the Israelites, I am stepping into the Jordan River, trusting that God will open up a path in His own perfect timing (Joshua 3).

Maybe this is cheating, but 13 months ago my son Elliott was born. Not sure I've had another single experience that has been as life-changing.

I had two of the most significant experiences of my life this year I helped my daughters labor and give birth. I feel like my presence made a positive difference in their experience. As a mom (with her husband) who birthed 4 of her babies at home, I am fulfilled and thrilled my daughters gave birth in the way it is meant to happen, with no medical intervention!

This past year saw the beginning of the dissolution of my marriage of 19 years. While not final by the new year, it was in progress. The decision was mine and was a very hard one to make. I lived with a person with an addiction problem for the entire time and it wasn't always bad. We had many great times together and had many accomplishments. She had 2 young children when we met and I was heavily involved in their upbringing. I was most concerned about their attitude towards me once the decision was made. When I spoke with them, each one astounded me. They were clearly aware of our situation and were basically wondering how much longer I could accept it. They've been extremely supportive of both of us. We tried marital counseling and the therapist quickly identified me as being codependent - making it easier for my wife to continue her behavior, making excuses, covering up, lying, etc. I'm ready for my life to move on to the next chapter but I'm waiting for everything to finalize. We're still living in our home and that can be very hard at times, but I have very high hopes for my future. I recently met a wonderful woman and I'd like to get to know her much better once all is final. I'm lonely at times but I work long hours and take solace in that. Best thing is I still have my kids! Looking forward to the future!!!

Last year was a woozie. I had minor surgery and my job literally closed down, checks bounced the whole 9 yards

Sending my 12 year old son to the Youth America youth camp this summer has, by far, been the BEST thing this year. Before camp, he was a bit socially awkward, as his self esteem took a dive a couple years ago because of a school situation. Sending him to camp with a Youth Pastor and kids he "sort of" knew from church - he was a little nervous. But he came back CONFIDENT, happy, popular with every person who went on the trip. He has great friends now - GOOD kids. New found purpose and has established his identity in Christ.

I started working a part time job instead of being a stay at home mom. I am great full for the income, but slightly rueful of the time I could be spending with my kids. I am glad to show my kids an example of a strong career woman who can be a nurturing and present mom as well. I am relived to not feel so constrained financially as we did in years past.

I started a new job, and I was expecting great things from it, but it has turned out to be an epic nightmare of indescribable proportions. I'm disappointed, exhausted, and feeling very hard on myself. But! I also moved into a new apartment, and I love it, and I feel so, so lucky and grateful whenever I walk into it. And I started dating an excellent, excellent man, and I think I might date him forever, for real, and the relief of that--and also the vertiginous feeling of "forever"--is something I rest inside of every day.

A few months ago my little sister had her first daughter, Julia, now I have a little niece and nephew. I'm both grateful and inspired. Grateful that my sister has taken the pressure of grandkids off of me and my brother, haha. But really grateful because the kids add a lot of joy to our lives. I remember recently my nephew referring to himself as a "pre-teen" and wondered how an eleven year old had decided that was a term to use with the family. He and his football team also won their first football game last Saturday (I mean the first, including last years season). It's these events that I miss living far away from the family, and sparks a desire to move closer to watch them grow up.

I was very sick, the sickest ever, in October 2014, from anti-depressant mistake. Add this to death of E.D. and Jim C plus Almy's illness and Patty's illness. Add my aging (turned 70), and Ira's hip replacement, and life's vulnerable ending, dying, has entered my thoughts significantly more. I worry about Patty's well being very much. I AM grateful for seemingly increased health (weight loss, increased yoga flexibility and strength). I'm disappointed in myself for not seeking out my joy and living it fully.

In April I decided to become serious about learning Spanish - a seemingly insignificant task that many people do in high school or college. For me, however, it was a way to communicate with my significant other, understand him and his brothers a bit better. It is also a way to expand my mind and really take myself out of the day to day. It had been suggested by someone to start to meditate. For me, that was too passive, and I found myself not relaxing. By actively learning Spanish, I have been able to focus my mind on one task, and not dwell on things that can upset me.

My job was changed very suddenly, with no warning - on the one hand this was a complement to my perceived skills, on the other it has meant an uncomfortable 6 months- I think on reflection, this is great for my long term career and is a much more creative, fulfilling role, but that doesn't mean it's easy!!

This year, my father's mother passed away. After five years of not talking, my father showed forgiveness and strength and reconnected with Rosemarie. This was extremely emotional, but taught me a very important lesson of forgiveness. After only a year of reconnecting, she got very ill and passed away suddenly. Our time here is short and it should be cherished. We weren't put on this earth to hate, but rather to love and show compassion even through our struggles.

My son this spring erupted, had 2 drug overdoses and flamed out of his school in March. I was shocked, frightened and deeply disappointed in him and more so with my self. out of this painful experience i am so grateful for opening my eyes and learning to let go of my ego surrounding my son. I saw how resentful i have been at him, how angry i felt towards him, I realized a lot of these feelings were just deflecting my disappointment in my own self. I realized how he at this moment was becoming a powerful teacher to me. Through this painful experience i am becoming closer to him and to my own vulnerabilities.

The death of my mother. Continues to have a profound impact on me today. It has been a strange path, because we weren't extremely close, but the pain around her death is nonetheless strong. I never imagined that I would be going through a death like this now. I never thought that when I said the Mourner's Kadish it would be so personal. It seemed like something that wasn't real. However, it is through my mother and her father that I feel so connected to that prayer, so it is ironic that now I am saying it for her. I feel some relief, because my mom was struggling so much. Sometimes the Universe takes care of things in ways that don't make sense at the time. It is very connected to this holiday about renewing your relationship with God and reaffirming that he is really in the driver's seat. I have to have faith that this is what was meant to be.

My ex and I broke up after over three years and moving country together. It's been a rough ride but I'm starting to realize that it's for the best and that I have my future to myself. I'm not responsible for anybody except me - and I can work on my own happiness and do things for and by myself. I'm taking care of myself for the first time in a while - instead of working hard to keep somebody else happy. I've found I'm happier and healthier and I have more to give as a result. I've never liked being single - this time it feels different. I'm in a big city, with great friends, a good job, lots to do and a host of opportunities. It's time to focus on the positive.

I lost my father, suddenly, and too far across the globe to get to him. It was devastating and continues to be horrible and difficult. No matter what age, no matter that we know it will happen, we are not ready for such a big a presence to suddenly and permanently be gone. No longer exist. We were extremely close, he was my hero for so many reasons and we were much alike so I feel as though I've lost a part of myself. And I continue to be broadsided by reminders of him in so many ways and places. It is hard to focus on what I know to be true - that I was so blessed to have him at all - when it hurts so much.

I got out of the hospital and I stopped having auditory and visual hallucinations and delusional thoughts in August, 2014. I decided to make positive changes in my life, and I began to eat in a healthy fashion, and take care of myself. I began to exercise and lost 70 pounds, not to be some "skinny" person (which I'm not), and not to be superficial, but to feel healthier and better about myself. It got me a lot of compliments, which I'm grateful for. It also made me think, "what did people think about me before? Did they think of me as a fat failure? Did they think I was ugly and disgusting?" I reevaluated whether or not focusing so much on weight loss was healthy for me, given my past history of anorexia, and given that I am a radical feminist, and I decided that counting calories was not healthy for me, and I stopped doing that. I'm still concerned about weight a lot, and probably always will be. I'm not angry that people complimented me for losing weight. I loved those compliments, but the fact that I love them makes me question the inherent sexism in this society that we place this expectation of beauty on women due to the beauty myth, and then we compliment women based on appearance and not anything else valuable or worthwhile about them as human beings. Nobody ever compliments me that much on anything else I do. But I lost 70 pounds, and people thought it was a miraculous feat. It was like I'd won the Noble Prize. I'd rather be complimented for my intelligence, my writing, my compassion as a human being, not my pant size.

I got to travel the world for 5 months with my girlfriend. While it left me feeling a little bit scattered because I've been living out of a suitcase for so long, I also was exposed to so many beautiful and amazing sights and experiences. It left me feeling stunned and awed and also helped me realized how important it is to have perspective on what is wonderful about your life and to have gratitude for all that you do instead of focusing on worries or what could be better.

Ha, where to begin? Breaking my wrist when I thought things were finally on the up made me sit back and have a good hard think. It reminded me a great deal about why I do what I do. It affected me in so many ways- I am resentful, not ashamed to say jealous, but what to some is a minor hurdle to me was a major life lesson.

I had an abnormal mammogram. While it was stressful to have this happen, I was grateful for it because it has motivated me to go to the next level of caring for myself and attending to my health. It has also helped me realize that my spiritual growth is serving me well, very well in this situation.

My grandfather passed away quite suddenly. I regret not telling him how much I loved him

I had knee surgery! It was so scary leading up to it - it is such a huge thing, and through it I felt really alone. My boyfriend wasn't great with it, but my recovery has been amazing, and I'm now able to do things that I haven't been able to do in over a year. I haven't been as good as I'd like to be about doing my PT exercises, but it has made me feel like there's no limit to what I can do. I am a person who will rise above, and who will seek solutions, and won't let anxiety keep me from making the right choice.

My mother died on New Years Eve. It left me confused, hollow, angry, relieved, stoic and utterly vulnerable to the world. I sometimes still struggle with coming to terms with it, but I find myself incapable of expressing it. Music and nature help, so does watching my wife laugh.

There is no single "major" event that I can recall over the past year but there has been a series of smaller events/experiences. For example, my daughter getting ready for her bat mitzvah, my youngest boy joining the cubscouts as a tiger cub, my father's continued rapid decline in health. The world continuing towards more human suffering with the spread of terrorism is probably the most significant event that effects me personally as I care about the world. I am sad and resentful of those people who think they are for peace and act in a manner that enables evil to grow and get stronger. I am deeply worried about the future consequences of all these mistakes but still try to be hopeful that at the end, it will all come out OK as it did with Nazi Germany.

The company I worked for over the past three years closed their Northern California office. I had five months to help my co-workers find new jobs and navigate through this unexpected moment in our lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to engage on such a personal level with so many people in need. I am resentful that I did not give myself enough time to prepare for the end.

My husband of 22 years was set free from depression. This came after as many years of my prayers for him. Over the last year in particular, I became more consistent in lighting Shabbat candles, and in praying at that special time n Erev Shabbat. I also committed more to working on myself than on him. Our marriage has even renewed by the One who gives life to the dead. I know that Hashem answered my prayers. I am excited, inspired, humbled and awed by His lovingkindness and tender mercies.

I am so grateful, relieved, and quite frankly astounded to have reached the bottom only to have my prayers answered this year. The most concrete "experience" of this year has been that I quit knitting, on March 18th to be exact. It turns out, the past 10 years I have been hoeing the wrong row with my knitting career. Even though in certain parlances I have taken it to the Everest of the trade, the once simple act of knitting and designing knitwear had become the biggest stress, block, and panic in my life. Explaining about higher-level knitting, same. I feel much better being relieved of the responsibility of explaining what I do, perhaps even more so then not having to do what I do. In March I packed up the studio, which was my entire apartment (80 m3), sold or tossed out 90% of the yarns and samples, put the machines under the bed, folded away tables, and commenced mourning. Me and mourning had become thick as thieves by then anyway. I endured years of being married to an abusive alcoholic who wouldn't go away, only to have the subsequent boyfriend kill himself on my birthday, leading all our mutual friends (my main friends) to abandon me unequivocally, my family is a useless little bunch, and friends are far away. It has not been easy to produce good behavior under such circumstances, and after being manipulated, again, by some man, all I could be was hysterical. (Sorry for this outburst, but: for all of the above, fuck you too, god.) By May 2nd (my 40th birthday) I was ready to die. Having produced a last will and testament, and a plan to gas myself and my dog to death with a rental car in the mountains of Slovakia I felt the weight of 40 wasted years of confusion and failure. I spent that day much like the days in the weeks and years before: in my bed sobbing in existential agony, when suddenly a light came on in the dark. A true friend came to our mutual rescue and in so doing started in motion a chain of events that has me feeling cured of my problems, full of love, and more myself then I ever have been.

I've continued to struggle with health problems this year, and I've added shortness of breath and chest pain to the back pain that was already limiting my mobility. I'm discouraged that none of the treatments I've tried have helped at all. I keep getting worse not better, and I'm not sure I'll even still be alive this time next year.

My grandmother's house and lot, which was designed and built by my grandfather and other members of our family, was not claimed by any kin and therefore sold. There was a window of time when my husband and I considered buying it and moving to Pittsburgh. I grieved heavily when he realized he would lose his pension if we did. I am still sad about it, but I'm moving towards a newfound appreciation of California. It's an emotional move further from my family but closer to my husband, who is my new family. I still am experiencing a torrent of varied emotions surrounding the loss of this house. Not only did both of my grandparents die there, but all six of their children lived there, some moved back as adults, and all holidays were spent there by the entire family. Now our families will have to work harder to find a common meeting place, since everyone lives in different states, and no one unit of the family has a house as large and welcoming to our big family. Also, the craftsmanship of the home is a testament to my grandfather's skills. I know he bought the land and built the house assuming it would be passed down through the generations. There are so many facets to this change, and it is a very complex thing for us all to deal with. It will be a long time until I feel settled about it.

The significant experience I had this year was going to Europe to stay with two women friends... in Antwerp, Belgium with Sabine, and in Marseille, France with Amal. The heat was brutal in Marseille; there were 5 adults and 5 children without air conditioning in a two bedroom apartment... this dear Arab family did everything they could to welcome me... but it was overwhelming. I tried to stay, but I had to go... and I opted to go home rather than continuing to travel. I just ran out of steam... And my dear sweet Bob was at LAX to welcome me home and sweep me off to Mexico... WOW what a summer. I am Grateful-- truly, there is no place like home!

A no-fault eviction caused 3 weeks of homelessness and an aggressive, fast home-buying experience. It was beyond stressful and I am still exhausted two months later. I wish the experience hadn't happened like that, but I do love our home. Our daughter was very unsettled by the experience and her reaction to the turmoil underscored what a sanctuary "home" is to us as a family. We all came through it and things are better now. But it was hard on all of us. Affording the change is going to be one hell of a challenge going forward.

Is my life boring or lacking meaning if I can't remember an event that I would categorize as "significant"? Even if I would describe my life as rich and satisfying? What about the small, but no less important, blips in life that still stir the heart and mind? My pal Jeremy asked me to participate in an art performance that required I play my snare drum in a mask as we marched from the Sheraton Palace to City Hall. Age and urban living can often cauterize one's urge to really cut loose and have unfiltered fun. The proverbial act of dancing in public and not giving a shit slowly gets harder and harder as we get older. (Well, for me anyway...) Donning a mask and disrupting Market Street's usual Friday routine was unexpectedly freeing. I'm grateful to Jeremy for inviting me. I was unusually inspired and energized, and still find myself talking about it to people three months afterwards.

To pick one experience would be tough. Maybe the health issues I had last October - gallbladder and appendix removed 3 days apart. 2 ER visits and 4 total nights in the hospital. I don't really feel long term effects, but it was interesting to see how things played out when the proverbial shit hit the fan - which family members stepped up, which friends really cared. I'm grateful for the help I got. Grateful for the opportunity it gave me to see the boys handle my illness. A bit disappointed by one or two people's behavior, though I shouldn't have been surprised. Inspired? No. It wasn't a near death experience or anything, or even that severe of an illness. Hell, it didn't even inspire me to eat better or exercise more.

I have finally got a girlfriend! My frustrations with women turning me down have been a common theme in previous years' answers. Last year, I sensed something was changing. This year has been the breakthrough. It has had a big impact on my life. I now have someone to share things with. I'm immensely grateful. I feel so lucky. Yes, I'm relieved. I knew, someday, it would happen. But I had to wait a long time. My only other girlfriend was 15 years ago when I was 17. I can be myself with Fran. I love being in our own private world together with our own lexicon and in-jokes. I hope we are also fun for other people to be around, but I think that's something that will come with time as we get more comfortable with each other's friends and family. Being with Fran is everything I've hoped for. I've been preparing for this mentally and emotionally since I was about 11, when I developed my first real crush on a girl. I'm so happy and content. I feel complete, at last.

My youngest daughter's boyfriend was accepted into Secret Service so she and Ralphie (dog) moved in with us for 8 months. This was economically good for them. It was nice to have her around. She helped with cooking and cleaning and she is good company. About 3 weeks before her boyfriend's graduation little Ralphie developed a congenital lung issue which lead to a 2 hour surgery to remove the odd growth. It was a big surgery with a slow recovery. At the same time my daughter was interviewing and preparing for her new teaching job.... so she was in Chicago. Ralphie has fully recovered and is back with his parents in Chicago... and they have both begun their new careers. Of course, now I miss them all.

My son died. Nothing can compare with that experience. His life was difficult but also had great moments. I was bringing him a set of teffilin when he died. I miss him a lot.

One of the most significant things that happened this year is that I made the decision to convert to Judaism. I'm 9 months in, and my Rabbi says I only have a couple of more months to go. One of my friends that I met at temple who had also been going through the process, converted just last week. She described to me the joy of the mikveh and and the awe of holding the Torah for the first time. I was excited for her, but I was also excited for me that soon I, too, would have these experiences. While the official process of conversion has only been 9 months, it was a life long road to get to this point. I have found my place religiously and spiritually, the home I had been missing. I have a new language, a new calendar, a new way of eating, and a new way of approaching the world. But I think the most beautiful part, one that defies description, is that I have found a new way of being within myself. And that is what makes my conversion the most significant experience of this past year.

In January, my father passed away. Weird to write those words. I haven't teared up yet -- but I may. The first month or so afterwards I cocooned myself on the couch, and just watched action movies and non-thinking shows on Netflix/Hulu. I'm grateful I had time to spend with him in his last months before he passed away, and very relieved he's not suffering anymore...but I miss my dad a lot. It hits me in waves - or quick punches when I let myself remember he's gone. It's gotten better but I imagine it'll get worse when I actually (hopefully) get pregnant.

The experience of being a part of the production team for Dillo Day -- only to have it all cancelled at the last minute -- was a whirlwind of emotions that in many ways served as the final and climactic experience of my freshman year at Northwestern. Producing for Mayfest made me feel more active and consequential in campus life than perhaps anything else I'd ever done. I felt genuinely a part of my student body and an important member of my peer group. To have it all cancelled due to weather, then, was incredibly disappointing, of course. Further, it showed me a very ugly side of many students who were quick to point fingers and blame us, in spite of all of the hard work and the fact that we, the producers, were more devastated than anybody else. That being said, it left me motivated and inspired. I bonded with the Mayfest team in ways I never would have imagined, and felt a connection and responsibility to a part of Northwestern life stronger than any other I've ever felt. I'm excited to for Dillo 2016.

My father had a heart attack and open heart surgery -I was grateful he was home not traveling, - I was relieved my parents are married and together for over 50 years, therefore he was not alone. -I was resentful that this happened before their 50th wedding anniversary trip -I was inspired by he strength and faith

My son Ken moved 1/2 a block away in order to be close to us and help take care of us when we need it. At first, when he mentioned it, I did not want him to move here. I did not want him to make such a sacrifice, as it would mean he would have to close his business, sell a lot of stuff, store a lot of stuff, move some of it all the way down here, find a place to live, and start his business all over. It seemed just overwhelming to ask this of him, as I felt the opportunities here were not good. Lots of people move here to the desert and then have to move again because it has such a short season when tourists are here. It is hard for a business to succeed and hold out through May and on until October because the population is so low. I resisted and he felt rejected and hurt. He felt that I did not value his willingness to help me out and be here for me while I recuperated from a big surgery. I was laying in the rehab. facility, where so many other people have no one to care about them and they just lay there day after day, week after week and month after month. What was I thinking. I have people who love me and care about me and are there for me. I realized that it was a gift of great price given from the heart. I accepted Kens offer to move here and tried to reverse the pain I had caused him by trying to stop him from moving here. It did not ease his feelings of pain. I am so grateful that he moved here. He is a joy. I was immediately relieved that he was helping Alex and me. This surgery of mine has brought us all together more clearly and closely. I have gotten to know what kind of a man my son is and he is a special kind of person. The world is a better place because of men like him.

I wrote and shared a very personal story. It was difficult to read and very emotional for the people who heard it. It affected me deeply because it was so personal. I hated being so naked and exposed. But, writing it and having other people hear it liberated my voice as a writer. I am grateful I had the opportunity to do it.

My eldest son was diagnosed with ADHD and at after a few months we were advised that medication was the next step. At the time I felt devastated. I didn't realise how much I was clinging to the idea that he wasn't that bad and that he was normal. Now that he's taking the medication I only wish we had considered it sooner. My son is just the same, but more present. He's still imaginative and funny and his beautiful self, he's just more able to listen and follow his thoughts through to the end. It breaks my heart to think what could have happened to him and how he would have continued to struggle if we didn't medicate. I'm so terribly grateful for my children and although it is often so difficult, I feel very privileged to be a parent.

losing weight proved to be a challenge and a blessing. I never though that it would be something I could do and while it is difficult at time I like the new healthy me and what to try and maintain the spirit that helped me be this healthy. I also like the feeling of being in charge of me it's all good

I got married in July - it was truly the happiest day of my life, and I am so grateful to be able to spend the rest of my life with my best friend and partner, Lauren.

A significant experience was accepting a position with the Lodestar Day Resource Center. I was the Volunteer Coordinator. I'm glad I did it, I know it's not necessarily the best position for me. Overall, it was an opportunity for me to see where my limits are personally and professionally. When I came face to face with them, I was able to see where I can improve and where I can accept my short comings.

I think the biggest change has been in my heart and mind. After a period of intense emotional turmoil following the climax and end of a toxic friendship, I can finally say I have never been in a better place both in my heart and in my mind. I finally learned to love myself and stand up for myself, and as I did I suddenly became allergic to all toxic influences in my life. I lost some people who used to be friends, but the greatest loss was my religion. At 25, I am now ex-christian. This is a good loss, as it is the loss of something negative, but nonetheless, it is a big change. losing your religion is not just losing an interest or a social group (though that too), but most importantly it is your whole worldview shattering and reassembling. I'm asking all the questions again: who am I, what are we all doing here, what is life, what is right and what is wrong? reexamining morals and views.. there's a lot of life to catch up on too. I'm finally free to be who I want to be and do what I want to do. Even though life's now more uncertain, it's also better! A final significant experience I have to mention is the fact that my dad now has a girlfriend, and my relationship with my dad has mended. after all the shit that's happened with him, we're finally starting over, and I have the quiet hope that he will be my dad again.

Over the past year I eliminated gluten, dairy and processed sugars from my diet. I also began exercising and stretching. I lost 25 lbs. Since the initial weight loss, I've stopped exercising and stretching, though I've pretty much kept to the change in my diet. Being lighter makes me so much happier. I feel good about how I look, and my blood tests are stellar. Both of these help keep me motivated. I am now restarting the effort to exercise regularly, as I know this will only make me feel better both emotionally and physically.

On July 17th, my husband and I began fostering a week old baby girl named Emily. We spent 5 months on the certification process but nothing prepared us for how dramatically she would impact our lives. It has been just over two months now and the future is still murky and uncertain as to whether or not we will get to adopt her. While the emotional roller coaster of raising her with this potential expiration date hanging out there is difficult to explain, I wouldn't do it any differently. Sometimes it is like living with an emotional time bomb, yet at the same time, I fall more in love with her every day. It is as if my life now suddenly has purpose. I'm already a better man for having known her. I know we are the right parents for her, I just have to trust that what is supposed to happen, will.

I had my first case where I really felt like I saved someone. Someone who might have died if he had had another physician. I felt incredibly stressed and overwhelmed. I felt helpless, with this young person who died in front of me. Afterwards, when I knew he not only survived but did well and left the hospital, I felt incredibly proud. My job is so often sad and stressful and thankless. I hope there will be more cases where I feel like I've actually impacted someone's life. I think long ago I thought this would happen every shift. Ha. I'll take once a year.

Got engaged, got married, bought a condo, adopted a dog, sponsored my husband. Greatly affected me. Im so different, but same old me. Feel like I grew up overnight. Relieved and a little stressed.

C: Moving to Connecticut. I'm still going through the process. The only way to describe it is as bittersweet. We made some awesome friends in LI, especially Ethan We had a great neighborhood full of kids for him to play with. I had a job that, while challenging and turbulent, I felt like I was able to contribute and was good at what I did. However, our family life was suffering due to the heavy demands that were placed on John by his employer. But now we have an opportunity to be closer to family and old friends. John has a job that will result in more balance and family time. I haven't found a job yet, but hope that will resolve soon. I generally feel that I haven't found my place here yet. So, in the end, I am thinking, hoping, praying it was the right decision. As John would say, I'm the neutral stage of change/transition management. J.: Left a job of 20 years. Glad I had the opportunity to. Work was pushing me hard, which was fine but my boss was a total dick and not a good manager of people. Quite honestly he was very condescending to me and unappreciative for the things I had done. As for home, this change has allowed me to cut back on overall work stress and focus more time with family. It has been nice to spend time with both Cait and Ethan, not to mention the pets and family! I am glad to have made the change and am still dealing with the transition. This is primarily due to the house still being on the market and many of our belongings still being in LI. E: Starting Kindegarten

I took on more consulting work in order for my wife to focus exclusively on starting up her nonprofit project. I'm not exactly resentful, but it feels like I've found myself in a holding pattern.

I wrote about this last year, but I still think the most significant experience in the last year was having my son. He is a year old now. So that means I was able to care for him and have him thrive for an entire year. That doesn't sound big maybe but it is. It is amazing. I had this tiny helpless creature come home with me and I had no clue what to do with him and now he is a little tiny person. With a personality and opinions. And it was and is and continues to be the most extraordinary thing I have experienced thus far in life.

Trip to England and France with my wife and son. Amazing, spiritual, fun, satisfying and inspirational.

I started dating a guy who still had feelings for his ex. I tried to be cautious and I grilled him on his feelings before agreeing to go out with him, and he assured me that he was over her, and I believed him, whether that was foolish of me or not. He'd tell me things like that if we broke up, he'd go back and try to date his ex again, and that he probably wouldn't ever be as sexually attracted to me as he was to her. He tells me now that he definitely doesn't have feelings for her anymore, but the damage has been done and I don't know if I can believe him about that even now after 8 months. I love him, but he still talks to his ex all the time, and so much of my carefully cultivated self-confidence has been shattered already. Things have been difficult lately because I've gotten more and more insecure in my relationship with him as a result of finding out that he did still feel things for her at the beginning of our relationship. Every time I see him talking to her, every time he tells me about interacting with her, I'm seized with such an intense sadness and feeling of inadequacy. It's like every message he sends to her is one more stab at my self-esteem, one more step he takes away from me, as if he's declaring "you're not that important to me, you're not enough for me." But at the same time, I'm so incredibly in love with him. He's helped me so much through the stresses of college and having to maintain an active social life while trying to focus on my studies. He's my safe place to land, he's my best friend, and I know he loves me too. But because of everything that's happened, even while he makes me so deliriously happy, there's this constant niggling negativity that has started to cloud all of our interactions. The way things are going now, I don't know if we're going to be able to keep this up, despite how happy and loving we both are toward each other. I feel like I'm being too sensitive, too critical, too picky, because he's made me so much happier and so much better as a human than I used to be. I feel like I should just let it go and try to forget about the mistakes he's made and the ways he's hurt me because I know he didn't mean to and fixating on it only hurts me more in the end, but when I try to let it go and calm down about things I can't, I just can't. I'm so scared because I feel like this means that we can't last because I'll always be suspicious and upset as long as he's still friends with his ex, and he's honestly one of the best things that's ever happened to me. Not a day goes by that I don't worry about this. It's sad that something so wonderful is also a source of such great pain for me.

My partner bought a house. Many other significant things happened this past year (let's be honest: these past four months), but I think none will have quite the impact that buying a house will have, long-term. I'm grateful, I'm fascinated by the process, and I'm so completely torn. I don't know if I want to live in it. I don't know if it's the house for me. It's making me question everything about our partnership, which is totally unfair and feels very wrong, but it is.

In the past year I was promoted to Sr Manager, which came with a significant pay raise, in recognition of the hard work I have been doing. The promotion is something I've wanted, and I'm proud to be recognized and rewarded, but it has come at significant cost, as well. The last time I worked so hard for so long I was 25, and helping to run a start-up in the first tech bubble. I am not that young anymore! And I am unhappy about the implied requirement in my company's work culture that says the best way to be recognized is simply to put in more hours than anyone else, without regard for the health of the whole person. It's not clear to me that the financial rewards -- and they are meaningful -- are a reasonable trade for the hours, and my physical and emotional health. The company is generous, but it doesn't *care*.

I went on my first Caribbean cruise and I loved it, despite the commercial basis of it, the ship was beautiful, the even Caribbean more so, we snorkeled at least three times, maybe four, and each time I was disappointed as we entered the water, but then discovery piled upon discovery and each time I was enchanted by the time we left the water. Good times with Lisa Jill, my guide and instigator.

My dad was diagnosed with cancer in mid September of last year. He passed away September 1, 2015. It's the first big health issue my family has faced. It's the first death of a close loved one I have gone through. I'm okay and then the next minute I'm sobbing in my car. There is no guidebook and I'm not really sure how the holidays are going to go for me. I will be the first out of my siblings to have a birthday without him. I'll be the first to read a card that says Love Mom, not Love Mom and Dad. Just the thought of that makes me emotional; when it actually happens...

This was my husband's 60th birthday year. I decided to throw him a surprise 60th birthday party with over 60 people. I was so proud of myself for doing it and pulling it off. I was not only able to get my children home and arrange for many of his friends to come, but I was able to keep it a surprise. He felt it was one of the highlights in his life and it felt great to be able to do that for him. It was a great party and everyone enjoyed it. I tend to avoid taking on tasks like that do to feeling overwhelmed and anxious, but I would have regretted not doing it. I was proud of myself and happy my daughters could help me with it. I was so grateful for my wonderful family.

We went to the AIPAC meeting in Washington this year and I felt inspired by the opportunity to exercise my democratic rights by speaking to our congressmen and later contact them. This year AIPAC focused on informing the public and Congress of the dangers inherent in the Iran treaty. It appears that it will pass even after a lot of work by AIPAC and me included. The goal was to inform people and from that point of view it was accomplished though I am saddened that enough of Congress did not vote it down.

Last year my best friend was persuaded, sort of, to leave her home and go into an assisted living facility. My best friend was 95 years old. While I just turned 70, age has never been a factor in our friendship. We never even thought about it, until her daughter bullied her in to this life change. The problem is that the facility is 90 minutes away. That is, 90 minutes if there is no traffic. There is almost always traffic. I no longer drive out of my comfort area. So, seeing my friend often, dropping in at her home several times a week, impromptu lunch dates, and shopping trips ended. My daughter took me to visit her at Christmas and we had lunch together at the facility and exchanged gifts. I saw her again last week in the intensive care unit at a hosptial. She had had a massive stroke with no chance of recovery. While, her right side was paralysed she was cognitive of her surroundings and visitors. She knew me. I thanked her for her wonderful friendship. I told her how much I'd loved being her friend. I told her I was releasing her to her next adventure. I instructed the nurses and Hospice worker to take very very good care of her because she was a truly remarkable woman. She was the most spiritual person I'd ever known. Everyone who knew her felt blessed just to be in her presence. In these later years she fairly glowed, radiating her inner light. I know where she is now. I rejoice that she is free. But now that I've said goodbye to my best friend of 36 years, what am I to do without her? It's only been a little over a week, but seems like months. When I read this answer next year I wonder how I will have adjusted to life without her.

I suppose one meaningful experience that occurred this past year was that I gained employment at my first job outside of academia and research. I've learned a lot, but very little about engineering. What I've learned about is people. I've learned about the rat race, and the struggle for "success". I've seen the looks on people's faces when they're chasing down a promotion--wearing certain clothes; laughing at certain jokes. I've seen the looks on people's faces when they're facing demotion--the helpless pleas for understanding; the frustration at the irrationality of it all. I've learned about the factory and about capital and labor. I've been a part of decisions that were intended to reduce the necessary number of employees for a process. I've been asked to avoid paying taxes on purchases through a myriad of loopholes. I've pursued projects to improve safety and ergonomics, partially out of solidarity, and mostly because of the fear of a lawsuit. I've seen ongoing attempts to move to other countries with cheaper labor. But most importantly, I've learned about the subjugation of the overworked human. I speak not of myself, but those who work nearly inhumane hours (which are compensated with overtime) in a job which is not and never will be fulfilling to them. I've seen people retire after 35 years of no meaningful existence besides dreaming of retirement, only to find that they have no dreams left once retired. Their mobility is horizontal. Their aspirations are material. Their opinions are discarded from the suggestion box, one by one. Their world shrinks, and they are discouraged (and discourage each other) from thinking about life or their surroundings. The crimes against humanity are ubiquitous without being tied to any one causal chain. Marriages break, and sexism abounds. Uncountable dissatisfied wives leave irritable husbands, and every one of the latter ends up a "deadbeat dad" --paying child support and indulging in misogyny for the rest of his life. Of men is said "He's a real hard worker, and has put in his time." Of women is said "She used to look real good." Race is not seen as an issue --by people who say things like "We should go up on the rooftops in Ferguson with 0.308's and thin out the problem." The others have no voice, and never will. So it goes.

I moved out of the house I shared with my ex and into a place of my own. I realized that loneliness was not the enemy I thought it was. I realized I alone took the best care of myself. I realized that I still couldn't form routines, even alone, which meant it wasn't her fault. I realized I look to others for structure and growth and that this was the challenge in being alone. I met someone who set the bar of compatibility high, but who is unattainable. It was and is anxiety inducing, how high the bar is, how difficult it is to get a reality check on the ideal she represents because she's so far away. She's still one of the best things to come of this year. I skied for the first time and felt all the possibilities that pushing the boundaries of your body represents. I slept with women I met online and realized I wasn't good at not forming attachments. And am also unquestioningly bisexual. I met this woman. I said "I think I've met my person". I felt her disappoint me and fall short of who I thought she was when she met my friends. I questioned whether she was my person. I am slowly replacing the dream of her perfection and the fear of her faults with a new confidence in us, founded on reality. My godfather died and I saw a person I love pass out of this world into nothingness, if I stick to my beliefs. But I found it unbelievable.

It's not one, but a series of events that has made me increasingly aware of my own and my loved ones vulnerability. My mother-in-law has been battling cancer, my 2 grandmothers and my husband's grandfather are all in their '90s and dealing with health issues, this summer I landed in the emergency room with intense back muscle strain, and last winter we dealt with a flooded basement followed by a series of intense snow storms that kept us home bound and needing to deal with the aftermath. I feel lucky to have access to the conveniences of modern life-- good health care, snow removal, grocery stores in walking distance,...-- and that loved ones can live well into their 90s, while being sad about the possibility of losing them, and scared by the awareness of how dependent I am on all of those conveniences and the rare access to some very small amounts of money that enable us to continue to have a house and food while dealing with everything that makes us vulnerable.

A significant experience that happened this past year is that I sold my house and moved into a townhouse. Currently, I am not grateful or relieved that I accomplished this. I am resentful that David passed away. I haven't been angry at him since he passed away. But since I couldn't afford the home because he is gone, I had to move. I feel forced that I had to move.

The biggest thing that happened to me this year is my 18-year old son moved to southern California to attend college. It has affected me in that I now essentially live alone. I have a housemate but I don't socialize with him. I am in fact grateful and relieved. My son has a learning disability and has suffered a lot in his life (sickness then death of his father and epilepsy diagnosed at age 17) which may be why he has anxiety. I am proud of him for being independent and moving out to go to college and for testing into college level English. I am not at all resentful. I am a tiny bit jealous but not really. I would love to just go to school and study what he is taking but I had my chance; now it is his turn. I am inspired to do something new, like maybe take a class or go to life drawing sessions.

Finding or learning the use of "ever since", simply relaxing, motivating, and doable

I met the love of my life. Everything is better now that we are together.

Got a permanent job, as opposed to temp positions which I had. The Permanent position requires a lot more time and effort but I am grateful to have it.

The loss of both my father-in-law and my mother. Now I realize what it's like to lose someone--two people--I leaned on a lot. Now that they're gone, I can't tell them that.

I got a calico kitten last year. She has changed my point of view towards animals. I failed to adopt two sibling kittens previously and when I returned them I felt really bad. I wanted to give myself second chance and I got Ashkita. I feel like she is my family now. She has babies and they are all so beautiful. Whenever I see any animal now a cat, dog, bird anything. I feel like it is Ashkita. They all have the same familiar eyes... same innocent eyes...

I completed a 50k ultra marathon. That in itself was so rewarding. However, the best part was numerous friends showed up to surprise and support me. I will forever be grateful for the amazing support and love my friends showed me on that day. Without them I never would have finished.

I hiked the John Muir Trail this year. 220 miles, all by myself. I am so proud of myself. I have never done anything like that before. I had never hiked alone, let alone camped alone before that first night on the trail. I cried all night long, and kept asking myself why I did this. I get teary eyed thinking about the growth I underwent in those 19 days. I grew strong. I grew confident. I grew into loving myself. I thought it would be nearly impossible to be alone that long, with no-one to talk to, no book, just myself. And it was the best thing I have ever done. Turns out, I really enjoy myself. Turns out, I can do anything.

This past year has been one in which I've been dealing with my dad's failing health. He's quite young, 59, and his body is just shutting down. My aunts have been in denial of his decline and are unwilling to let him have peace or let him go. My sister and I have done our best to support his wishes - my sister took him in and I lived at her place for two months to assist in his care - but when my aunts promised him longer life on this earth he decided he wanted to be with them. I've been a bit resentful of this as they're filling his feeble mind with nonsense when all medical knowledge points toward his demise and that it is soon in coming but I've also been somewhat relieved that my sister and I are no longer in charge of making the tough decisions for my dad's welfare as he has no spouse or anyone else to make them for him. I am resentful for how they're keeping him around against what he stated was his medical directive to not have his life sustained by artificial means - but am grateful that they've taken my dad in to assist in caring for him as to take the burden from my sister and myself. I believe that this has affected me in knowing that I don't want to ever place my children in this predicament should I go into failing health - that I want to place someone in charge of my medical directive who is outside from the family so that they cannot hold resentment toward a family member for mismanagement of care. I also have had to learn to let things go - my dad was found to be of sound mind when he decided to go with my aunts and their promises ... there's nothing my sister nor I can do about it. Though we've been the primary caregivers for the past year we just have to let it be.

I adopted a dog 3 weeks ago. Although I had dogs I deeply love them for the first 40 years of my life, I did not believe, or was convinced by other people that I wasn't capable of caring for a dog since I lived alone after getting divorced. In fact, I love and care for Felix and myself quite nicely and feel deeply lucky to share life with this guy. Oh, plus I bought I house that I love in Patamé in France. It feels like the best life ever.

I graduated from Tulane University and it was more magical, stressful, relieving, humbling and inspiring than I could have imagine. On a roller coaster of emotions, I have never truly felt more appreciated, celebrated and accepted than I did during my last year of school. From my peers to the staff and administrators, my closest family and friends - it was truly an amazing moment (and year building up to it). I will be very blessed to feel as connected and whole as I did this past year.

Going home for my parents 40th. Lindsey went with. It was an amazing fast weekend with lots of family she fit it so effortlessly. Really cool to see my parents so relaxed and here some of there stories. Sitting around on the deck in the evening with brothers, playing w nephews, running w Lindsey, building a tree house visiting maquoketa caves. It made me realize how important family is and how much instant one with Lindsey.

A significant experience this year was the moment I FINALLY received the inspiration and answer to my longing for movement and clarity. It was a shock because it entailed me giving up everything I cherished and moving back to Ohio to attend college. However, the moment the inspiration came, I knew it was exactly what I would do! A part of me was NOT HAPPY about leaving my beloved paradise of the US Virgin Islands, or my Soul Family. But another part of me, perhaps the wiser part, knew it was exactly what I must do. I witnessed the manifestation of this process with amazement and wonder. It was nearly effortless, which was very affirming. As I sit in Columbus, now a full time student at Ohio State University (GO BUCKS!), living back at my mom's and reconnected with family, it still feels a bit surreal at the major change I've experienced. But because I waited for the answer to arise in my heart, rather than make a decision from my head, I trust that I am fully supported in this endeavor, and that feels wonderful!

A lot of significant changes happened this year - most of them very happy. My daughter graduated from graduate school and took a job far away in Boston ( 1000 miles away). And I have started a new position as pain management practice facilitator. Happy changes but also scary because the changes are ahead of us both. We did have a scare: Our daughter has chronic leukemia and she went down to MD Anderson for a bone marrow biopsy and check up. The fellow that saw her gave her incorrect information that she was doing much worse. We thought she would be unable to take her new job or move to Boston. After she contacted her doctor and the communication was clarified, she realized she could go. So we were relieved that her treatment was working for her but still scared about her going so far away. My new job almost didn't happen for me either. At first, I wasn't offered the job. Then, several months later, my manager encouraged me to interview again and the job was offered to me. I am grateful and hope I do a bang up job- but also a little intimidated by all the unknowns.

My husband and I were involved in a life threatening accident--we were hit head on by a Chinese tourist driving on the wrong side of the road. The Highway Patrol Officer estimated the combined impact at 50mph. Our only injuries were inflicted by the airbags that saved our lives and allowed us to walk away from the wreckage. My new car was totaled. We are grateful to be alive.

My experience is more of a "condition" than a standalone occurrence, but still earns a significant spot in my recent history. Almost exactly 13 months ago, I had my first daughter, and have spent the last year and month growing to know her and learning how to parent her. I've been stretched to my limits, and yet somehow am happier than I've ever been. My daughter has inspired me to embrace new challenges in a way that I previously didn't know possible-- and I know that's cliche, but it's true. I learned that I am able to excel at my job, move into a new house and make it home, and raise a wonderful child all at once. I'd say her birth and her life have affected me in a whole spectrum of ways (some negative) and I wouldn't give it up for anything in the world.

The most significant experience in the past year was feeling like I wanted to die, that I had no options. I have never felt such a real moment of fear, sadness, and loss of hope. Wanting to kill myself affected the way I view the world now. Nothing is more important than the present moment, nothing is more powerful than choosing to search for happiness. I am grateful to have seen such desperation to be able to see so much joy now. I'm glad I am alive and I'm glad I hung in there :)

The first one is that my mother in law has temporarily moved in with us, due to having broken her shoulder and not being mobile or able to care for herself. She is 74. Our guest room is on the 2nd floor, so our dining room has been turned into a makeshift sickroom. Complete with commode. This has been a stressful, frustrating, and yet also rewarding and humbling experience so far. (Her surgery isn't for another month, and who knows what recovery will look like.) You cannot NOT get closer to someone when you are wiping their ass on a daily basis. The other biggie is that my health took a BAD nosedive. My BP skyrocketed and my face went into spasms in August, and I went to the ER thinking I was having TIAs. The drs initially thought so too. But the MRI found lesions on my brain, and I'm having odd symptoms (numbness, dizziness, balance issues, exhaustion, etc). The radiologist sent me to a neurologist, and my first appointment with Mercy Neurosciences is in two days. I have accomplished little in the last month other than to rest and shore up my energy to work at the clinic. I am scared, angry, resigned, determined, hopeful, fearful all at once.

When I was 16 my mother died of ovarian cancer. I watched her battled the disease and it was so painful to see her suffer and know she was going to die. It was a loss that was so profound and affects me every day of my life. I'm not grateful at all in fact I'm resentful and feel slighted and shorted. My life would have been so different but I do believe that where I am today and who I am today would not be the same if this tragic even didn't happen.

I was raped. It affected me greatly. I still don't understand what happened. However, I did find strength in myself and learned how to pull/put myself back together. I also learned how to take my body back and reclaim my sexuality. I've been in the hands of too many men who have disrespected my body and didn't listen to what I had to say. But what didn't kill me only made me stronger. I was truly at the lowest point of my life. But once I looked up at the sky, I realized that life does go on for the better; I really deserve to be happy.

We have found our house and are in the process of buying it. I'm very grateful to my parents for facilitating the purchase!

rejection from church & family. it left me feeling wounded, hesitant, subdued, angry. but i learned more about people. i got away from the holds of religion. i am now more willing to suspend & reconsider long-held beliefs & thus more able to discover new truths.

In the past year I got involved with a diagnosed sociopath and I was emotional abused and severely unhappy for 6 months. I am grateful for the experience though because it made me realize first of all that being mentally ill doesn't make someone interesting necessarily and that real love does not make me feel unhappy. I realized that my happiness is most important—I need to do the things I love and surround myself with people who truly make me calm and satisfied. If someone is so important to me that he's worth worrying about, he won't make me worry.

Our dog Shea was found to have a tumor on her spinal cord, became progressively weaker in the legs until we decided to euthanize her. It was very hard to decide because she was so fully present and stayed herself to the end. I experienced deep sorrow when she died, and waves of guilt and grief before and after. I felt good about relieving her of the confusion and pain of losing her strength of movement. I was so glad that our family was together for her last days and her death. I was grateful and moved that our daughter decided to go with me for the cremation, and I was glad to accompany Shea fully through that. Mostly I was touched by the unconditional love, patience, happiness, forgiveness and devotion shea taught us by her example. I miss her and love her forever.

The last year has brought a multitude of feelings and emotions. After my son was born, we struggled to ascertain what kept him up hours on end. My wife, Jessica, dedicated herself to countless breast feedings and home cooked, organic meals. After it was all said and done, we realized our son had a fe allergies to some food he was consuming. My wife made adjustments to both her and the baby's diet and he began to sleep (and so did we). Over the last year I have to say, by far, the most impactful aspect of the year was the dedication of my spouse to raising our baby. She sacrificed her sleep, time, and well-being in so many ways that I can never fully appreciate. All the way through conception and labor into the dietary sacrifices for his well-being. She truly is an inspiration. She cognitively made the decision that his life was more then her own and subsequently implemented a plan to make sure she succeeded in its' outcome. Now, a year later, I can honestly say she has given her life, love, and soul for our young child. I wouldn't have it any other way...

My paternal grandmother died, the first of my grandparents to do so. It was unexpected, and mostly it affected me in inspiring concern for Dad. I'm still not quite sure how I'm supposed to feel about it.

I got sick again. I'm a mess. I thought I was better. Now I know I'm just 'under treatment'. It's isolating and lonely to be sick with an invisible illness. No one knows me. They think I'm depressed. I'm not. I feel judged if I talk about it. I've stopped talking. That is bad. I've got to flip that. I'm trying. Is anyone like me? I'll look. I love life so much. I love every bit of it.

My sister attempted suicide in October. It shook my world to its very core and even writing these words still makes me cry. I haven't been a good sister. Something in me completely shut down when this happened and I can barely talk about it, barely talk to her sometimes. I haven't been quite the same since it happened, no one in my family has been and I don't think we ever will be again. My heart is still in a deep, dark, tight knot over it that I'm not sure if I'll be able to unravel. I'm not even sure how to start being a better sister.

Spiritually/Religiously the most significant thing is that I went to the mikvah, and officially a member of the tribe. Considering that this journey has been nearly nine years in the making, though it feels longer relief has been the pre-imminent emotion. It has also given me to a slighter degree the 'now what' syndrome, as I strive to continue learning and growing. On a more general note I feel like that I'm starting to come to my own self awareness, and learning to advocate for myself and take strides to achieve things I've wanted but never though that I could achive.

I had to take on additional responsibilities for a limited time. I am relieved. It was very difficult

My faithful old car died. Very sad,it was a friend. I am resentful , grateful and several other emotions. The new one is sleek and beautiful,but not much fun!V

I fundamentally changed my approach to my business and how I balance professional and personal life. I relocated the business and started setting clear boundaries on my time commitments to the business. I was nervous to start. Nine months into the process I still coach myself (almost daily). I'm happier, more relaxed, I think my relationship with my kids is improving and (maybe) my business is improving as well.

I got engaged! I am happy, just very happy. I feel very lucky not just to have found the person that I want to wake up next do, share experiences and go home to bed with, but he also feels the same about me. And he is perfect, just how I would want my partner, the father of my children and my best friend to be. This happened about 9 months ago from now, but I still feel every day how lucky I am to know that we will be married and that this is the most special relationship either of us has ever had before.

I began my journey to becoming a Montessori teacher this year. I started the first summer of a three-summer program and began working as an assistant in a Montessori classroom this fall. More than just an educational method, I have to believe whole-heartedly that Montessori is a way of life and a life philosophy. It informs every facet of my life and every interaction I have with anyone else.

I completed the Maryland Challenge. It was a wonderful experience because I had to prepare for it months in advance. That preparation was all the more worthwhile when I completed the challenge. I also enjoyed working together with another person, Josh A., to complete the goal. The experience has also re-kindled my enjoyment of nature, hiking, and the outdoors.

I joined the Peace Corps last year. During this time last year, I was sitting with my colleagues from my host country, explaining Rosh Hashanah to them and how much I missed the shofar of all things (it's weird what you miss as an expat). But the real story is this: Peace Corps has been emotionally and psychologically hard--at times painful. It's impossible to talk about it in a monochromatic emotion. Some days I face a loneliness that I thought I'd beat years ago. Others, I'm locked in a state of heartbreaking sublimity at the subtlety of the local language. It's fulfilling. I am glad I am here. But the feeling is multi-faceted--light and heavy.

We moved into our new home; we own our home - first time in 20 years. I feel very relieved that this move has gone so smoothly and we're happy here.

I shifted to a new country for further education. I left my family behind, and all my friends too. While it has been very tough learning to live without them, I am grateful because it has given me a new appreciation for people, time, and life. It inspires me to be the best I can be, so that I can do some justice to the number of things I had to give up on for this opportunity.

This is a 2014-2015 naswer--since I can't find any record that I answered the 10 Questions in 2014: In the spring of 2014--My Aunt (for whose assets I was co-trustee) died and I worked with my cousin to settle the estate and had to endure enormous tension in dealing with my mentally ill brother whose share of inheritance was going directly into a Special Needs Trust account--and he has never accepted this reality. We got through it without my worst fears--him becoming violent or actually following through on his threats and suing us--being realized. In the summer of 2014: 1. My sister-in-law died suddenly and unexpectedly after failed heart surgery--a horrible loss for my husband's brother--and a terrible shock to me and my husband. I completed arduous (for me) legal work to transfer my trustee duties for my mentally ill brother to a fi-duciary/caremanager who promptly disappeared on me so I had to reverse all the legal papers and take back the trustee duties--I'm 71 and this duty has become impossible for me to continue. I also ended a decades long very high-drama on/off friendship because I finally hit a wall on maintaining this in the face of my difficulties with my mentally ill brother. At the same time in 2014 I began legal work (w/ my husband) to revise our will--and make sure our disabled niece on SSI received some of our estate--which meant I started the process of creating a Special needs trust for her....perfect counterpoint to being the trustee of the special needs trust for my brother, because she is grateful, cooperative, happy to have this resource added to her future. But the legal work to create the trust took many months and was painfully arduous for me. Once I resumed trustee duties for my brother, I transferred his banking from my home time in upstate NY to California where my two brothers live--and raged my way through that process because I was so far out of my comfort zone with legal and banking and accounting duties, and dealing with my brother. Then I tried to learn Quicken so I could easily create annual reports for him, and failed. I finally allowed my husband to take on that job last month. I also had a difficult time visiting my co-trustee brother in February--as his marriage is very contentious--and his wife without warning went to a motel during our time there because of her shame at the state of their home (they are both serious hoarders). My brother (the supposedly mentally healthy-cotrustee brother) has a degenerative disease and I saw signs of his decline in health during that visit. In 2014 I finally found a synagogue and rabbi that were the right kind for me, and joined a Torah study group--all of which are an hour's drive from me. I attended my first ever synagogue services and events, and went to my first high holy day services last fall, and went to Roshashanah services this week. I also began seeing a counsellor at the beginning of the summer with the intention of once again after Yom Kippur, begin the search for a successor trustee for his special needs trust and a caregiver—as my co-trustee brother and I need to have someone in place to administer the trust for our youngest brother. I approach this task with great apprehension since I feel so burned by that happened the first time around. But I’m finding that I’m talking to the counsellor about my increasingly short fuse in the face of difficulty—my problems with my husband, and my tendency to overburden my life with constant tasks and busyness. In 2014 and continuing into 2015 I began to have raging temper meltdowns first at my mentally ill brother, then at my other brother who is co-trustee with me of our youngest brother's Trust, and then at my husband who it has seemed to me is becoming more and more narrow, constricted in his thinking and range of activities and more and more obsessive/compulsive about the ways he wants small details of household maintenance to occur. In addition I agreed last February to go for a three week trip to California and that much close contact with him, that much time away from home and my own interests and desired activities--increased my impatience and resentment of him. This resulted in a terrible scene with our grandkids in the spring—when my husband violated all my standards of adult behavior with a public tantrum and to me unforgiveable words. It took me weeks to be able to talk to him about this—and fortunately my son called to say the kids had been scared, which gave me the opening to tell him without anger what I thought and that he should apologize—which he did. He also began finally working on himself On the bright side, The special needs trust for my niece is completed and now functioning. We have a date next week to finally sign our revised will. My son and family lived near us for the last two years and we had frequent visits and times with grandchildren all of which were wonderful. They have moved back to Western Canada now and are resuming their ways of not staying in contact—but are responding more quickly to our requests for calls and skyping, and the grandkids so far are happy to talk with us. My husband is exploring all the ways he becomes tense and constricted about his needs and seems to be genuinely working on loosening up—physically and mentally. He is right now on an 8 day photo trip to Maine, and I am so grateful he is willing to do this without me, and explore and try to expand the place his art occupies in his life—because he is an accomplished landscape photographer, but is always on the verge of giving it up because “it’s too much trouble.” I’ve continued the Guantanamo Bay advocacy/weekly fast day work—and it has become an integral part of my spiritual path—I am constantly learning from my research into the latest legal and political events that swirl around it, my write-up each week to members of my peace group and friends to inform them and urge them to speak out, and my calls to government administrators and elected reps to ask them to do the right thing for justice and peace. Just learning how to speak in a peaceable gentle way, with getting a ragged edge to my voice or speaking to quickly has become a wonderful practice for me. So how has all this affected me? Am I grateful? relieved? resentful? inspired? I feel I am all of the above—still struggling with my tendency to fall into resentment and despair because I remain trustee for my mentally ill brother’s special needs trust and his inheritance, still apprehensive of every possible event in every area of my life that may prove difficult, still regretful of all my tendencies to tighten up, and put my head down and barrel through difficulties without allowing myself to consider which ones I can actually lay down and leave behind me. And I am grateful for my Torah group, the beautiful and welcoming congregation I’ve joined, my counsellor who mostly just listens to me, but somehow I end up feeling like I’m learning to make better decisions and choices as I try to add “spaciousness” to my life.

I unexpectedly ranked third nationwide during the professional licensure examination for teachers in the secondary level. Moreover, since I ranked highest in the national capital region, I was also asked to deliver the response in behalf of the other examinees who passed during the oath taking ceremony. While taking the examination itself, I felt as if I would sufficiently be fortunate if I passed. And that if I failed the examination, it would just be a sign that I should go find another career. "Today I will annoy those who desire my downfall by basking in the joy of my windfall."

My first day of graduate school was exactly a week ago. It has been a long time since I felt in that intimidated, overwhelmed and out of my element. After cycling through all my exit strategies, I came to see that I need to suck it up and stick it out. I am capable. I am not here to be a rock star. I am here to learn. And that can be a very humbling experience.

On the positive side, my wife and I are expecting our first baby. We have known for only a few weeks and have been keeping it confidential until all 1st trimester controls are over. We have been going through this process with great expectations and a little anxiety, but it feels great to start the year with new life and new beginnings. On the not so bright side, my brother had a tumor successfully removed from his only working kidney. This brought us together as a family and helped us be more thankful to G'd for our health and for having each other. I did feel extremely thankful for the support my family and I received from our loved ones and the professionals involved. It was a huge relief when we learnt that the operation had been successful. O also feel a little worried about the year to come with all the health issues in my family. I continue to pray to G'd for refua shlema for all my loved ones.

Returning to school to get a masters in counseling. I am choosing a bigger life. I am happy-sad. Happy/joyful because I am loving the work and the structure. Sad/mournful because I had to let go of familiar, comfortable ways of daily life to make room for this adventure. At 53, more than anything else, I am grateful.

Friends child got married. Wishing her the best but sad because it's not what I hoped or expected for her.

The biggest one is our wedding. I devoted so much attention to that experience. I loved that so many friends and family gathered around us. It felt right for declaring our love - and our commitment to one another. We accepted - or asked for - a very traditional Jewish ceremony with Micah. What he said to us under our chuppah was so beautiful. It feels a little funny, exactly one week after our wedding, and four weeks before the due date of our child!!! to have devoted so much attention to so many details. I wouldn't say I feel resentful, but I do feel off track from my work. At the same time I feel a resounding calm, peace, and well - - - of wellness, from which I'd like to work.

Our beloved cat had to be put down in July, following a sudden health crisis. We buried him in the garden, read prayers of thanksgiving for the joy he had brought into our lives, and lit a yahrzeit candle. I was devastated by his loss from our home and our lives, but also amazed and delighted at how well my daughter handled her first real experience of death and loss, and the maturity of conversation we were able to have, and grateful for Jewish ways to frame what we were going through.

I don't feel like anything truly significant has happened for a while, and that makes me extremely resentful. I don't want life to pass me by while I'm sitting on the couch. I'm trying to fix that because I know it's my own responsibility. Maybe the most significant thing to have happened is that I became sufficiently resntful of this to take action - for which i am very grateful,a nd energized.

I was feeling strange and was at the drug store. I asked if they would take my blood pressure. It was 71/63. They told me to go to urgent care which I did. I had dehydration and was given an IV, chest x-ray, EKG, and gave blood. I got very good care. I decided from that moment to take better care of myself. I am a people pleaser and was not taking care of me. I am feeling better and that experience made a difference in my life.

I am going through a divorce and I'm relieved, lighter and inspired but a little sad for my husband. Initially I felt freedom and happy to be "myself" again on my own journey.

Going through the calendar I see the following major events: Optic Neuritis Surgery Jamom's heart attack ON I couldn't see, and had to rely on others to get to a hospital where i waited nearly a whole day for anything, and got no answers. that was frustrating and scary. That's a fear that's been drilled into me, going blind. Then they declared it might be a deadly debilitating disease, but weren't sure and wouldn't know until it got worse. The fear has faded as I haven't has issues since then and a follow up exam went well, but i had a spike of fear this week when my vision dimmed again. S After years of doctors not wanting to sterilize me, one finally said it was my body and i could. I had solid reasons, i should not have needed them. I will go blind immediately if pregnant due to no longer being able to take my medication. This is what ended my wedding before it happened. I also never have strongly wanted children. They always were convinced i'd change my mind or something else would come along and fix my eyes. i have had so many eye surgeries i can't have another. So now, i had a tubal ligation and an oblation. My periods are no longer very long and horrifically painful, yes i get cramps but it is no where near as bad as it was. And i have no more risk of getting pregnant on accident. It's a lovely feeling to finally be over and the surgery itself wasn't nearly as bad as they warned me. And i no longer need to take hormones! J you know you will lose your grandparents but its scary when there are close brushes. i went to be with pop pop, and see jamom. i hate hospitals. i have gotten better about going to them as it's nice to have people there even if you hate it. I am grateful my job lets me deal with things like this.

As of today 9/15/15 Kayla and I have broken up. I went to visit her for Erin's wedding and it was clear that Kayla was angry and wanted to talk. We didn't talk before or during the wedding - which made the wedding a lot less fun for me. Once we finally got to Portland and got to bed we immediately began talking. I was going to ease into the breakup process but Kayla started into it herself. I did not see this coming - I thought she was angry at me because our communication had waned in the past weeks. When the conversation was over we ended our romantic relationship. I still care about her a lot and she clearly cares about me too, but we understood that my sexual needs would come in between us if we got back together. I didn't fly out until two days after our breakup so we spent 2 nights in the same bed as friends - nothing sexual happened and I am happy for that because it would've added to the confusion. The nice part about breaking up this way was that we could figure a lot of things out in the aftermath. For instance I will be paying her back for the stuff in our apartment and we worked out the details of that in person which was nice. I don't know how I feel about this breakup. I know I have wanted it for a long time, and tried to break up with Kayla 3 times because of it. But each time her enthusiasm and logic and my self-doubt brought me back. Now that we have split, I will not get back together - no matter the level of second-guessing I have. I am resolved to this. I think if I talk things through with Kayla she will agree to get back together with me, and I expect her to ask me multiple times if we made the right choice. (Up to twice at this moment) Right now I am scared for the future, for potentially moving on from another set of friends, and for having to make my own way again. I am excited for the exact same reasons. Perhaps the biggest thing I am excited about is the search for someone to spend my life with!

Watching the world burn. Watching the rise of more grievous wars. Millions of refugees. Animal cruelty. Police brutality. It is all so overwhelming. I simply have to tune it out sometimes & just focus on my little family & community. Living right, doing some good for the people I know.

I finally went through with my official conversion to Judaism. I had practiced my own personal brand of Judaism for over 12 years, but I wasn't active in the synagogue or in the Jewish community- until September 2014 when I met with our local rabbi, expressed my desire to make it official, and began the process. It has been a wonderful journey. I am grateful for the inclusive spirit that I felt from the congregation. I had to overcome my fear of rejection. I wish I had done this 12 years ago, but better late than never.

The most significant thing that is happening is a prolonged state of transition. I had to give up my apartment over a year ago, and I've been looking for a new home for about two years now. My idea of what I want keeps shifting and I don't feel close to home. I've started to get things out of the storage space because I miss myself. My books are me, they are what I love and what I think about. I feel uncomfortable with this state, unsettled, unhappy. I haven't traveled in two years because my mother and my father-in-law have been sick and have died. I haven't been able to stray far from my transitional home, further trapping me in this state. I feel stunted and in stasis and so far away from what makes me happy -- having a pretty home, having lots of books, having a parrot and a dog, having a garden. Such simple things most people take completely for granted.

My first niece was born and that was incredible! We also went on our first real vacation abroad together and it was a great one. I'm overjoyed and also a bit relieved that it went so well.

The last year has been the most difficult year of my life. After my cat had to be put to sleep, I was given a serious reality check when the police officers who killed Michael Brown and Eric Garner weren't indicted. The racism of this country came into light as well as the fact that we're not really dealing with it. Then, in December, on my 26th birthday, I was drugged and raped. I was out with 'friends' who I can't talk to anymore. A few weeks later I lost my job, meaning that not only did I not have an income any longer, I also needed to figure out health insurance while working through some serious emotions. Since all of this happened, I've been trying to find my way and figure out where to go from here. Who are my real friends? Who can I count on? Lately it seems like the answer to that question is only me. This all affected my view of the people I surround myself with as well as my opinions on my own strength.

Off the top of my head, I can not think of anything major happening to me this past year. I feel a sense of relief about that, I suppose because obviously nothing is going awry. Sometimes though I feel anxious because it seems not enough is happening. I'm not asking for tragedy or even excitement. I just wonder, Am I doing enough, or too little?

I found a general surgery job that I was really excited about and went through the whole negotiation process (a first for me!), but then a fellowship opportunity came up at the last minute before I signed the contract and suddenly changed my course. It was shocking to my system and I don't know exactly how I feel about it most days. I can't say I regret my decision because I tried to make the right decision at the time with everything I had to do that. I'm not sure if I lost more or gained more. I guess time will tell. It feels like a really 'grown up' experience, because even though I had a new opportunity, I really felt a loss by letting go that other job. Also, this decision leads to some uncertainty about my next steps. I don't relish going through the whole process again, especially since was so pleased with it the first time--will it be as good this next time? Should I still consider pursuing that job I was so excited about before? Should I consider going for another fellowship to pursue a more academic career? So, I guess there are more questions than answers for me right now.

It's hard to choose just one. 5775 was the year I first "met" and fell in love with Reform Judaism. I have never been happier or more fulfilled. At the same time, it is also bittersweet because this has been such a source of tension in my family. My mom is furious, she intentionally keeps her mind closed about this, and she refuses to acknowledge how hurtful her behavior has been for me. Before this came out she and I had been very close, and now our relationship is cold in is like walking through a minefield. Therefore, my source of happiness is also a source of sadness, and this hurts so much.

I got divorced this year. It was certainly significant. It affected me in ways that I did not expect. I was sure that my motivation and happiness for my new single life would keep me moving up and feeling great. That did not happen. I felt like I was doing all this good stuff for myself and my daughter and then being actually divorced was a let down. Like, now what? Being on my own and actually having to fend for myself of everything is scary. I had a true setback in my emotional and physical wellbeing. reading last year's responses were valuable for me as it showed me how strong I am actually capable of being

Having our daughter has been the biggest day of our loves. She is just amazing. But with being new parents comes a wave of good and hard days. My anxiety has def. increased but I am working on that. I am so grateful for our daughter, she has added this level of love that I never new existed. She has softened my heart, made a better woman and makes me aware to be the best I can be. Every single day.

I fell into depression and had to start therapy. This experience made me overthink all of my life choices and I am still dealing with it. My therapists says I will be grateful one day. Right now it's hell.

Last November, I met Claire. I had been dating around a fair bit at that point but had a lot of false starts. I wanted to meet new people and I was feeling a bit sexually starved, but I didn't have the time for another relationship, let alone another serious, primary partnership. But there she was, brilliant, opinionated, and unafraid. Conversation was easy. She had me. I made time for her. Ten months later and we're talking about moving in. She and Christian are family. She calls me Daddy and wears my collar. She's taught me a tremendous amount. I couldn't be more thankful for her presence.

The person who started my company retired, and I took his place as the leader. I immediately saw things differently than I had before. It has been fascinating, although stressful. I'm finding that I have to look at my work processes, as well as those of others in my office, for better ways. I'm developing new self-care skills, at times painfully slowly. And I'm trying to remember to be in the moment: deal with this issue, right now, without considering what tomorrow will bring. I'm grateful for what I learned working with him. I'm a bit resentful at times for his laissez faire ways, and the quickness of others to expect more from me than they did from him. I want to be a better leader because the world needs me to be. Plus it feels good :)

I've witnessed my dearest friend meet her true love and it fills my heart with joy to see her life blossoming right in front of me. It makes my heart so glad to see! She is someone I care about deeply, like if she were my own sister and I love to see her thrive and welcome a new love into her life. I can forsee them getting married someday.

Samantha's injury. It was so surreal to constantly hear about the bad things that can happen and how we have to deal with them and use the emergency procedures and then BOOM it happened. I don't know whether I'm resentful it happened or whether I'm grateful but what I do know is it made me look at things much differently. Our lives can change in an instant. Something that was supposed to be so fun and joyful turned into a nightmare that changed Sam's life. I am now so much more grateful for each day I get.

I am thankful to be able to work in a variety of jobs. I am grateful to my wife for being the backbone of our family, but I am also guilty for "forcing" her to be stuck in a job that she neither loves nor hates. I am inspired to find a way to live that we can both be at our happiest and most emotionally available.

My father died, my ex daughter in law, mother of our grandson, died. Both were difficult personalities in my life. I felt closure with my father's death. I had sent him an amends letter. I found out he cherished that letter and wanted it read to him over and over. I felt grateful, relieved. With my ex daughter in law I felt sadness and shock at first, then just felt so sad for our grandson. However, it was almost a relief to have our worst fears come true when she died of a drug overdose. My biggest concern is how can I be helpful to our 8 year old grandson.

I found out I am pre-diabetic and have high cholesterol. I am terrified but am determined to finally change my life by eating right and exercising, so that I can be a healthy person. I hope that along with this I start cooking healthy food for my family, reading more, Facebooking less, and just increasing the quality of my life and my family's life. I hope I hope I hope.

Gracie's going to college. I am grateful she is there. Worried about the debt this is bringing with it. Resentful that there wasn't a way to get it paid for. Relieved that she chose a place I love so much and which is filled with people I trust to love her.

On November 7, 2014 at 9:47 pm, I gave birth to my beautiful and amazing daughter Maisie. Growing a tiny human and bringing new life into the world is the most staggering, magical, mystifying thing I have ever experienced, coupled with the most blinding pain I have ever felt, followed by inexplicable joy and relief at her safe arrival in my arms. I also gave birth without medication, and so I felt more powerful and capable than ever before. I have new Bad Ass cred. Grateful barely begins to describe the avalanche of emotions that fills me, thanks to my daughter. Even that simple phrase: I have a daughter... I am a mother. My understanding of the capacity for human feeling and experience has grown exponentially. I love her beyond words, beyond expression, and almost beyond comprehension.

The most significant experience of the past year is definitely the deployment of my girlfriend to Afghanistan. She left in February and will return in November. It's been an opportunity for me (indeed, for both of us) to reflect on things and to grow in our relationship - even though we are some 8000 miles apart. It has been at times stressful for us both. And it has also allowed us both times to feel extremely blessed by the presence of the other in our lives.

This year we lost Erette to cancer. He was so young. But his death made me appreciate what I do have and has forced me to realize that I need to just go for it and quit waiting for life to happen

My wife suffered a miscarriage, after struggling for years to conceive naturally and having had our only child through IVF. It wasn't the easier way that it happened and was pretty traumatic for her. Her reaction to it has been inspirational. Her rational, selfless thought processes backed up by her natural approach to her religion have been amazing to see.

I decided to quit what I thought was my "dream job", and I'm still undecided whether I'm relieved or disappointed that I had to make this decision. I'm a happier person without it, and a whole lot less stressed, but yet a bit lost and saddened to admit that the direction I was headed in didn't feel like the right fit for me after all.

My husband unexpectedly died in June. I am still processing how it effected me - besides the fact that it has effected all of me in every conceivable way which is practically like not being effected at all. I am grateful that his death was relatively quick and that he did not linger for years and then die because he would have been a terrible patient and the financial aspect of his illness would have destroyed us. I am inspired by the literally hundreds of people who have all taken giant steps closer to us and the love showered upon us from both close friends and strangers. While I miss my husband and the life we had together, I see room for new things and possibilities. Right now, I have been questioning my marriage. Was it happy? Did it work? Was it working? Were we close? Did this relationship end on a high note? Was my husband happy in our marriage or was it merely good enough? Was good enough all right?

It's hard to identify just one! I covered the agency as interim director, and I think, though it feels like a long time ago now, it was truly challenging and rewarding in a way that work hasn't been for me before. I think it brought up a lot of questions about where I want to go in my career, and what kind of experiences bring up different parts of my personality.

My husband and I are having problems. We seem to be one of the many couples who has issues after their first child is born. It has affected me by scaring me a bit, and also reminding me that I am very "tough". I've had difficult times in my life, and I've gotten through them. I know how to survive, and I'm learning how to survive in a way that's true to myself. I'm mostly upset that we're having difficulties, but I'm still hoping that we'll come out on the other side still together and in a better place as a couple.

I quit my job. I have been a lawyer for 12 years, and I have hated it for 12 years. At first it was student loans and this sort of prideful "I can't quit, I went to law school, I'm not a failure!" thing that made it impossible for me to quit. Later it was three kids and a mortgage. But the past couple of years, as my misery has grown and my temper at home has gotten shorter and shorter, I knew I had to make a drastic change, both for myself and my family. So I up and left, to the shock of my coworkers and the delight of my family. It wasn't a rash decision. I'm a planner, and we planned--we saved, we budgeted, we agreed that I would go back to school for computer programmer (what I should have been doing all along). I'm also not a risk taker, and I have taken I huge risk. And you know what? It feels WONDERFUL!

In March, I reconnected with my former partner. We had dated for 6 months and I ended things last August when she went back home to go to grad school and left our shared city. She reached out to me this March to see if I wanted to try to be friends with her. After thinking about her proposal for a week, I told her, "No, I do not want to be your friend because I am still in love with you." I had not stopped thinking about her for the 7 months since our breakup and said that I wanted to try dating again. I knew when I said all of that that I would most likely move to be with her if she decided that she wanted to date me, which happened about 2 months later at the end of May. After much deliberation and a few extended trips to her city, I made the move 10 days ago and feel positive about my situation. We are not living together to start, which feels very smart and I am so grateful to be close to her and see her most days of the week. Second chances like this do not come often to me!

I started a 501c3. And it didn't work out at all the way I thought it would, over and over again.

Daddy was sick with leukemia. It was a real test of our family's strength and capacity to come together at a time of trouble. It made me fearful of my father's mortality and resentful of my brother's lack of attention.

Jeremy and I have had almost no money this year. His oil patch job fell through and he just never got another one so all winter he was unemployed with no EI. He has a very cavalier attitude toward money, his philosophy being "I don't have any now but I will again at some point so I'll just put everything on my credit card!" As such, it's now a year later and he owes around $14,000. And I can't tell if he is actually concerned about it and just hides it well or if he genuinely doesn't care. This kind of behavior sits very awkwardly with my own values of "If you can't afford it, you don't do it!" It frustrates me no end when he has no income and I end up paying the lion's share of everything. This July, I spent over $400 on groceries for us because he never once bought any - and on a $15ph salary, that's not easy! I haven't put a cent into my own savings this year because I've been trying to pay for as much as possible so he doesn't have to keep racking up debt. And the thing that hurt the most? He couldn't even spring $50 for a 30th birthday present for me yet managed to go sledding every week. That stung. What really bothers me is that I never sat down and told him exactly how I was feeling, throughout any of this. I would make sarcastic little barbs about money here and there but of course that never lead to a constructive or honest conversation. It just ended up breeding resentment. I've just never had to deal with this situation before. My money has always been my own and I've never had to share it with anyone else. But my desire to be a supportive and loving girlfriend has, I fear, just lead me to being a little bit taken advantage of. On the flip side of this, despite having no money and feeling resentful on a regular basis, we have had an excellent summer. We are closer than ever before and I am proud that these financial issues have not broken us. Although I wish I had handled the situation very differently every time it arose, I am pleased to have had this experience early on because now I can view it as a learning curve!

Inspired: Black Lives Matter

There are 2. I started my own business in April. It has had many ups and downs but I believe I can make it even better. It is equally exciting and nerve wracking all at the same time. My boyfriend and I of 6 years broke up in August and I am now single for the first time in 18 years. It is sad and scary. I thought we would be together forever. I am lonely and learning how to take care of myself which is very daunting.

The drought in California has me grieving. I am aware of complacency more than ever. I'm going to either go car free or get an electric car. I'm going to move to within walking distance of a grocery store or use public transit. I was to divest from fossil fuel & plastic as much as possible.

At the beginning of 2015, I was going through the process of applying and interviewing for new jobs. In March, I accepted a new position that I was very excited about - it was a great position, in line with the direction I wanted my career to go, and a great opportunity. Instead of feeling those things, though, I was overwhelmed with the stress and anxiety of leaving the job/surroundings that were comfortable and moving on to something new and challenging. I knew underneath it all that I was making the right decision, and I never doubted my choice.. but my anxiety made it really hard to enjoy the process. I was grateful and honored that I had been given this opportunity, and excited at the idea of everything I would learn. I was also afraid to leave the community I had become a part of and risk losing connections there, but I knew that in the long run I would just be doubling my network of colleagues and gaining experience in a different jurisdiction.

My daughters hiked the John Muir Trail in CA, which reminded me of how adventurous my wife and I used to be. Inspired to find that wanderlust again.

My nephew started having seizures. We didn't know what was going on at first and we were terrified. I wanted to help my family so much but it is the first time in my life that there has been a challenge that I have felt so powerless to change. It has shown me that sometimes the only meaningful thing you can do is to keep showing up and keep showing that you care. It has also shown me how terrifying it must be to parent -- to know that ultimately you are quite powerless to protect the one thing you value the most.

My mother is 94 and aging. She has gone from being a physically strong, vibrant person to one who's life is restricted by fatigue and memory loss. Being there for her, caring for her, and giving her love and companionship have among the biggest things to happen to me in the past year. I am at times grateful to be able to show my love. I am at other times resentful that she is so dependent on me no. I am at other times inspired that I can serve my mother in love the way she did me as a child.

My niece got married in late May, which brought 5 of 6 siblings together for the first time in 40 years. Some of us gathered in 2's or 3's or even 4's over the years, but never 5 of 6. It was a strain, I'm no longer 12, the eldest is no longer 22, and I am perfectly capable of backing him down from big brother bully mode. Relieved it's over, grateful we had a chance to see each other, re-establish new ties, and create good new memories.

In the past year, I trained for and completed my first Olympic-length triathlon. I am proud of my dedication to it, and impressed that my body could carry me through this. I also learned how much exercise improves my live--how I feel, my emotions and anxiety. I also worry, though, that I love it so much that I'll become one of those boring people who only talk about their activities.

In the past year I started dating new people. In the past I've never dated casually-it's always been intentional and with specific people. Using online dating I've been on a lot of dates and dated people short term-something very new for me. It's been an eye opening experience learning about people, myself, what I like and don't like, what I can and cannot handle. I'm grateful for all the experiences and eventually meeting Ezra.

Finally finished my BA at UC Berkeley! Sitting on the field during graduation and knowing my family was behind me was such an incredible feeling. So very grateful for each and every one of them and the support they have given me.

My significant experience has been getting a package allowing me to retire in June......It was God sent, and I am so grateful and happy !!! My job had become miserable, and I was looking to quit even before my planned timing at the end of the year..... It is the most significant happy experience since my wedding 21 yrs ago !! I feel so free, and de-stressed, and I have let all work thoughts disappear... Unfortunately, another experience occurred when I saw my brother in April who has been diagnosed with Dementia....I feel so bad that now I have time to catch up with him , and he is almost gone ....My heart hurts badly whenever I think about losing my brother to this terrible disease... Time is so precious and you only get one shot at it....

I met Shaun. I thought I fell in love, maybe I did. After 11 months of serious dating, which I thought would turn into marriage I ended it (in a way, abruptly). It has changed the way I view so many things. I feel stronger, smarter, and more in touch with my own feelings. I have learned that my intuition is an incredible gift that I cannot deny. When something feels inauthentic to me, I cannot partake. It has been about 7 weeks since we broke up and after going through some pain I actually feel quite inspired. I feel honest. I feel ready to accept and find the person I should be with and need not want to be with forever.

As I consider the last year, there is one major event that overshadows all the others. It occurred right around the fifth of January, it might have been the sixth. My mom, dad, and I had just recently returned from watching Oklahoma State taking on the Washington Huskies in the Ticketcity Cactus Bowl. It had been an off trip as I felt there was some tension between my mom and dad. On the fifth, I learned what was going on. My mom and I were enjoying lunch when my dad come home early. He had us both sit at the table as he then confessed to having an affair. It apparently wasn't even his first affair but rather his fourth. Apparently, while my sister and her husband were in town for Christmas, and my little sister's wedding, she had been using my dad's iPad when his mistress sent my father some suggestive facebook messages. Once the leak began, my sister had to investigate further and upon looking further into the matter she discovered naked pictures and messages that clearly evidenced that my dad was involved in an affair. She took this information to my brother who then confronted my father about it. What followed next was a lot of yelling, tears, and angry feelings. Our family went from being very close and talking a lot to being split. My sisters refuse to have a relationship with my father, my mother's family has attacked her and my father, and I've been depressed and saddened. Growing up my entire life, I have been told I was just like my father and with my experience dating and with love, I started to feel like I was seeing my future present itself in front of my eyes in a very unpleasant way. I felt doomed to repeat the mistakes of my father and I really didn't want to go through that. This event has really colored everything that has happened to me in the last 8 1/2 months. Between watching my parents fight and worrying about them getting divorced to trying to figure out who and what type of person I want to date and potentially marry. For example, I had an absolutely wonderful woman who I put my relationship with her on ice because I was too afraid to pursue it. I'm trying now to defrost it and make something happen but I'm fighting an uphill battle because of what I've done. My parents are doing better now, but it has been a rocky ride. My sisters still don't communicate with my father. My mom's family have been hard to work with and the healing process is taking place. I'm glad to have gone through this, it has taught me a lot. I feel like I've grown up a lot and started to really realize what a health and strong relationship looks like. It has reinforced to me the importance of loving and treating my spouse as the valuable person that they are. It has been a learning experience and it is no where close to being over. I've got a lot to learn yet.

Nathaniel has started medication for his ADHD. Meaning he was diagnosed. We were in the doctor's office for something unrelated when the switch flipped. She saw what we see, and sent us to a specialist within a week, and we were able to get *that* doctor to see the switch-flip as well. After some blood testing to ensure no underlying causes, the diagnosis was made, and medication trials began. We have never - NEVER - been more relieved. It has been nothing short of miraculous for us as a family unit, and I'm so glad we found someone who finally LISTENED!!!

I've been able to let go of Josh. I never thought that would happen. This time last year, he was definitely my drug.

Significant experience. They happen so often, I feel open most of the time to the significance of each experience that it is difficult to choose just one. I suppose I can write about the students I have had the privilege to work with throughout the past year. They are so thoughtful and caring and intentional about their interactions, I learn from them every day. The time Rebecca said she really likes talking to me, and when Morgan and I were hugging after her graduation dinner, and how there are those moments when I know that just being there is helping. Hearing Olivia answer questions after participating in a presentation that I know she was very nervous about and feeling so proud. Being a part others experiences and moments of growth is such a joy.

Bought a new house. Significant because we have 4 boys with one being 3 months old. My mother in law used it as a opportunity to ask the question "what kind of a man moves with a 3 month old". Tough pill to swallow when you are doing your best. I'm a fierce fighter so very difficult to keep my thoughts to myself to protect her the hurt and myself the disapproval from my wife. The "pill" is indeed tough to swallow.

My grandma died this year. She was 88. When this happened I felt a new kind of responsibility as a woman. I am the last female with reproductive capabilities on both my father's and mother's side. My mother died when I was young , and every other woman in the family (her sisters) has had boys - two brothers, five male cousins, stepbrothers, nephews - it's strange. So when my grandma passed I realized that all of the feminine wisdom that's been collected in our family, well that's all mine and mine alone to impart on future generations. It kind of makes me feel like a princess or a queen. It's my job to embody the divine feminine for the family. :)

I had my eggs frozen. It wasn't pleasant, but I realized I can handle needles. The end result was murky. The doctor called and said the eggs were 'dark and granular,' meaning probably not the healthiest. I began to wonder, after reading about it online, if this was because he had kept me on meds for extra days, hoping to produce extra eggs. The experience made me realize that perhaps letting nature take its course would have been the way to go. It was a very disappointing experience overall.

I decided it was time to move, to be transplanted to a new location. I hoped that the experience would reveal "God's fingerprints" in the way I have seen them so many times before in my history. And it did! It seemed there was one place intended for me out of the hundreds I looked at. I found it and our offer was accepted. This new home has inspired me to give away, throw away and sell great numbers of things that were serving as a physical diary of my past. I feel I no longer need that outward "proof" of who I am and where I have been. I am becoming more portable again, as I did in 1986 when I moved to Israel. I am excited about the next less encumbered chapter!

My grandmother passed away this year. I am so happy that she made a peaceful transition. She lived a long happy life and went just the way she wanted to in her sleep. I try to honor her memory by being the perfect combination of strong and sweet.

I had a moment while driving from the mall after buying my daughter's school clothes. I was feeling that old unsettledness of depression: A sense of disorder, dislocation, the weave of existence coming apart. My usual reaction to this feeling is to try to make plans to escape: Move houses, jobs, even spouses. Make a complete break, go elsewhere. When that's not reasonable, I want to sleep and ignore everything. But this time I felt the feeling and said to myself "Okay, there it is. Look at directly. Don't pretend it's not there and don't try to make it go away." In a silly way, it reminded me of one of Eowyn's lines from the LOTR series--"I stand upon some dreadful brink, and it is utterly dark in the abyss before my feet"--and it gave me comfort. Once I acknowledged that I felt yes, and now I keep living.

My daughter became ill this year and needed me to step up from being a "see you every week or so" Bubbe to becoming their daily "with us" Bubbe. I was never resentful; illness happens and never felt this was anything but a blessing to have them in my life more But I am fearful she will not heal fully, concerned about the effect that will have on them and angry that we have not yet found a real solution. Things are better but there is far to go and many ways any gain can be lost. They deserve healthy parents and grandparents like and it's harder still when nothing looks wrong on the outside to the rest of the world.

Realizing that it wasn't so good for me to allow my head to rule over my heart. Instead, I've been trying to go back to living the way I was when I might have been happier....The heart ruling over my head....Coming from my heart. Also, trying to no longer be in the popularity contest. Although I've won, it's not done very much for me spiritually. And I've got to be more consious about what I know would make me more healthy

I turned 50. Between that and a few medical concerns (fine now), I've been a bit more focused on enjoying my life, my friends, my wife and kids. Life isn't forever.

Hmm. My new job would be the most obvious candidate for most 'significant experience' of the year. But, I'm going to go a different, more thoughtful route and say my trip to London in December. That trip was so spontaneous! I quit my job and could travel for 2 weeks! So glorious. And, ahh, visit people I'd last scene a half-decade ago or more. It really brought me back to my roots and to a time in my life when I was most happy. A time when I was living on my own in a foreign country and seeing friends when I wanted and going to be when I wanted and everything was new and exciting. But, ultimately, the life felt...unsustainable. I don't know if that's true or not. Living in one city, settling down seems more reasonable. But that doesn't mean that I can't travel on my own more. I find it very satisfying and really value my independence. I also think rather firmly that while we may choose to get married, letting one person define us is far too lazy. I love so many people and places and I need that extra space to explore that side of my personality. I am grateful for that gift of time that I had. I think it's important I keep exploring it. It gives me such joy.

Oh I don't know... Jon & I got married!! I was against a big wedding from the start. It was stressful and expensive. It was challenging to find my own voice and also be interested in other people's opinions. But then, but then. It WAS SO NICE to share a special place with so many people who hadn't been there before. It was just absolutely warm and delightful to be hugged by virtually every friend and family member that matters to Jon and to me. For what other excuse could we gather all those folks - especially the far-flung ones - to us? I am inspired to cultivate these old and new friendships. I've never been so good at it, but hey LOOK people came to our wedding and loved on me. They're not angry. So let me keep it up, like an adult, and return the love.

I was laid off from my job after 4.5 years. The loss of this job also forced us to relocate on relatively short notice, uprooting my whole family from the friendships, schools, and even country where we had built up a very supportive life. Yes, I have very conflicted feelings about this event. I feel relief in many ways as I was perennially struggling to fit myself into a mold that I didn't really fit. I had worried that I would ever be able to meet the expectations of the organization though I felt that I was good at my job and making very significantly to the organization. I was also flattered by the professional status afforded by the job, and willing to stay as long as my family was happy there...which they were. The professional atmosphere was becoming increasingly negative and stressful throughout the organization during the last two years, so when I was laid off...I have to say that I was quite relieved not to have make the decision to leave a workplace that my family loved. At the same time I feel resentment against the organization who I worked for as I don't believe that the contributions that I made were truly appreciated, and ...though there were many really smart people who were let go...while others were kept on...I can't help but feel that the decision for selecting me to be laid off has to have been based at least in part on a judgement regarding my professionalism. Maybe this reflects more my insecurity than reality... This event initially inspired me to take a fresh look at my career and life-choices and to try some activities for self-reflection and self-fulfillment during the time that I am jobless. The reality so far has been though that I am fully busy dealing with every day life and getting my family settled in a new country and applying for jobs. I will have to keep trying... I also can't help feeling helpless and some level of failure in meeting my family's expectations when they share their frustration, anger and grief about their loss of friendships, social network and lifestyle. I feel like I need to be strong and supportive in the face of their anger and sadness...and feel like I understand some of the difficult sacrifices that my parents must have made to insulate me from the challenges of reality during my childhood. This is all still quite fresh...many feelings to be resolved, worked through...

I started my first job!! Life in the real world is definitely different from all my years of school, which makes it hard to adjust and also scary. My whole life I have had a plan- elementary school, middle school, high school, college- now what? It's scary but exciting that the rest of my life is entirely up to me and the decisions I make for my career. Even within the first year I am learning what kind of projects I prefer and the type of people I work well with. This is valuable information when making decisions down the road!

The most significant event of the past year was that I left my job of 15 years. It was a great job and any outsider would think I was crazy to leave it. But personally I was feeling bored and unfulfilled. My new job is a huge risk, I'm helping to start a company. But I'm so grateful for the change. I'm grateful for my new partners who help me feel supported and respected. I'm grateful to my clients for believing in me. I'm energized and excited almost every day and I haven't felt that way in years. It was really the right move.

My husband had a stroke just prior to the Jewish New Year last year. He was only 53. He had a lousy neurologist who did not help the process of his recovery in any way. Despite that, my husband is now one year out and in better shape than I could have hoped for at this time last year. His stroke affected me in more ways than I could ever share. It is difficult going from wife and best friend to caregiver to someone who is ungrateful and belligerent for the first 4-5 months. I was very resentful for awhile as he was impossible to live with not just for me but for my children. Thankfully, things have gotten much better, so I am relieved that I still have my husband. He can do much of what he used to be able to do. His sight is lousy and his memory is nowhere near as good as it once was but I am grateful that he is trying very hard to be who he once was - the wonderful, funny, caring man who I fell in love with and that he is able to work. Inspired - not sure that word fits here - I am thrilled with my husband's progress, but it hasn't inspired me. I hope that through working through this tough time while mothering 2 teens (one who has bipolar), caring for an ill mother, working full-time in a busy, busy career maybe I have inspired someone else who has been at their wit's end.

I became a boxer. It has given me strength of character, mind and body. It has taught me self-control and guided my meditative practice.

I finally shared with a therapist everything that I could remember about the childhood incest. I've noticed that something inside of me has changed and I'm not so attached to outcome, either way. I'm more peaceful, more eager to do new things because I'm not so worried about failure. Can't explain it but it's like I'm whole again after decades of this big missing piece because I was keeping secrets that didn't belong to me.

I am a secondary teacher. This year, I decided to seek promotion to vice-principal. Because of this decision, things have changed for me at school. my principal is very supportive and is helping me find opportunities to improve my resume and gain useful experiences. I have taken the first of two difficult qualification courses. I am now on board-wide work teams and getting my head around the workings of the huge school board where I work. My principal is giving me leadership opportunities within my school. My peers will say things like: "let's get "her" to be the chair, she can put it on her resume!" It is amazing to me that simply announcing a goal has led to people are treating me differently and going out of their way to help me meet my goal. I didn't expect this.

My wife divorced me. At first it made me very sad and lonely. Since then, I have been even more inspired to pursue Elohim and now I find myself in Yerushalayim for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, and maybe longer. So I'm beyond happy.

An outwardly successful woman killed herself. It reminded me how close we all are to feeling sour enough on life to take our own life. I opened up more with others about my own anxiety and depression. I started unpacking my grief about my father's death and my divorce. It's not done. I'm still in pain. I am in progress.

Hah--my department chair didn't give me the class I wanted to teach. Even though I could go over his head, it motivated me to dust off my resume and get a new job. Over a month in, and I am still thrilled. It was time for me to get out of the classroom, and I feel like I am finally progressing in my career goals. Which in turn is giving me some of the "umph" I needed to start moving on my thesis again. So, yes--grateful. And happy. Happy that I wasn't content to stay, happy I was willing to a) address the problem if I had stayed at the job, and b) consider other alternatives that addressed the underlying issue. However, grateful to my department chair? No--but not resentful either, I am not spending much energy feeling one way or another about him or his decision.

I think the most significant experience that happened this year was the end of my short-lived relationship with Tom. I was so deeply in love with him, even though we were only together for a few months, I saw myself living an adventure with him, even if only for a year or two. We talked about getting a small flat in Paris, a loft probably where we'd make breakfast in the morning and I'd roll his cigarettes while he made coffee. As the air changed from the hard heat of summer to the crisp cool of fall, he finally let his true colors show. The boy I fell in love with on the shores of the Mediterranean turned out to be too scared to love me the way I needed. He wasn't able to care for me, wasn't able to let me care for him. I don't feel any resentment though, I know he's sick. I know he regrets the way he treated me, but I've let that all go. It's been nearly a year since he left and in the wake of that, I've grown incredibly. I learned to reach out to friends, to not find solace only in the arms of another man, to guard my heart, to cook elaborate meals for one, to get up for 6 am yoga classes, and to express my feelings in writing, instead of bottling it all up. I'll probably never tell him, but I am so thankful for all that happened between us. I wouldn't be on the path on I'm on, and I wouldn't have the life I do today if it weren't for last summer, and all of it's fallout

I had a respite from my abusive husband, who was hospitalized for eight months which gave me time to learn autonomy after years of being controlled. It was a relief, at times scary, and a much needed movement from a long-time stuckness.

A man close to my age passed away after fighting cancer, before his son turned one. Though he wasn't a close friend, I knew him and his wife and they were close friends to others very dear to me. The experience made me grateful for all that I have and closer with his wife and son in my desire to support them.

This Spring, we unexpectedly found our dream home. Perfect neighborhood. Perfect layout. Perfect details. I loved everything about it. Luckily, everything worked out for us and we got the house. It was a whirlwind, since we were not especially prepared for this to happen...but now we are all moved in and it's starting to feel more and more like home. Like OUR home.

This year, I lost my virginity. When I think back on how much this one thing has stressed me out over the past couple of years, I am so relieved it happened. That was a huge deal for me, and yet it was one of the last things that came to mind when I thought of how to answer this question. That just goes to show that no matter how much importance I placed on that act, it was really just a distraction from the life I am living now (which is full of so many much more important things).

I'm not so sure it can be distilled down to one experience. It was my first year out of graduate school, and after having a couple of very intense, successful professional years simultaneously. I had to answer the question, "What next?" It was really difficult, and I felt very depressed and confused at times. I'm now beginning to emerge from that malaise, and starting to get an inkling about what I want to work on next, and I'm relieved about that, but I'm also hoping that at some point, I'll be able to truly feel grateful for having had that slow, confusing period of time. I think it's important to learn to be ok with the downs as well as the ups.

I changed jobs about a month ago, leaving a position I had held for almost 10 years. I am grateful and and relieved and inspired, but I'm also anxious and unsettled. This is exactly why I made such a change, however. To grow as a person by challenging myself to get out of my comfort zone. I am glad I took the plunge and didn't chicken out. I am part of a new community now and building new relationships. It is weird to be new at something again! But good, I think.

The significant experience of this year was I finally got my groove on in Real Estate and all the years of scraping along have finally ended out in a good solid year of work and work coming to me. It is both a blessing and a relief as well as an affirmation that I stayed in long enough.

Last October (so almost a full year ago) I defended my dissertation proposal. It was exciting and definitely a relief to have it over with.

I've been harping on the negatives of my past relationship and I need to get this off my chest so I can finally heal. Every one has heard me talk about my ex and how I hated him even Chipmunk has since we have been together. I tell anyone who will listen and today I need it to be the last time so I can move forward in life and grow in my relationship with Chipmunk. Last year I broke up with my on-and-off boyfriend of 7 years. He cheated on me and that was finally my last straw or so I thought. I learned that it wasn't really him I ever liked but the male companionship and below average penis. He was my first and only boyfriend. I still kept my ex as a sort of best friend while I started a new school with no friends and as a sex buddy when I was feeling horny. I was secretly scared no one else would ever love me even though I didn't my ex. Even letting him be my first was because I thought if not him then I'll still be a virgin. I ended up liking the act of sex more than having sex with him but since I was self conscious of my body I had sex with him rather than going to someone else. I thought who needed a boyfriend to disappoint you when I could get keep my ex around for sex. I had sadly reduced every guy in the world to be only good for sex. Wow that is seriously how I thought and it was horrible to think that way. Honestly I was just continuing the horrible cycle. I was with a person I didn't care about and saw a horrible future with. But because I decided I'll keep my self open to meeting other people i thought it was okay but honestly I wasn't. I thought it was easier to focus on my studies and new school then go to my ex when i was feeling frisky rather than getting to know someone new. But to be completely honest the sex wasn't very good & so boring and my ex was more emotional than me. He had no plans for his life, I knew where I was going. He dropped out of school, I was loving school. He hid behind me while I was honestly keeping him for sex and having some to like me. I hate that I kept him in my life for so long because he wasn't always for my dreams or my silly ways(a big part of me); couldn't help me sexually, financially, or emotionally (I felt like an adult and he was a child not a man); and the worst thing to me was I had lowered my standards to match him. It wasn't until I met my current boyfriend Alvin aka Chipmunk that I realized it was perfectly great to be myself. He is all I have ever secretly dreamed as a perfect man. He is completely nothing like my ex which I love. We share interests that I've never even told my ex or a lot of people close to me about. I hate I stayed with my ex so long. I'm disappointed in my self for using my ex as sex buddy when I was lonely. I feel so blessed to have met Chipmunk because now I have finally found my soulmate. We are a team not two people using one another for personal gain but a as a power couple who helps one another succeed. Chipmunk has never had a girl like me in his life and I can definitely say without a I have never had a guy like him. Our connection is amazing, we could both sense it from the start. Even though we had only hugged and kiss once before we made love for the first time we both knew some how it would be amazing. We both still remember that night. Our sexual chemistry is explosive (big thick cock and great skills in bed helps lol) and our love for each other is so strong we know it will last forever. I love being around him, his scent, his personality, his smile, his crude jokes, everything just as he loves me.

I was invited to join a group of women who gather every few months to retreat together and get work done. Work on their "work", or work on their own selves, or just work on their life. I was surprised and pleased to be invited, as I respect these women as independent, intelligent people. I am grateful to have a little group of women I can be completely transparent with - who I know have my back. I have been a bit at sea about not having close friends to spend time with, and I am hopeful that these women will help fill that void.

D and I broke up in November, just after our 1-year anniversary. Actually, he broke up with me, by telling me "I love you but I'm moving back to Wyoming." It was the first and only time he ever told me he loved me. And then I found out 2 months later that he cheated on me, at least once while we were together. I was devastated. I don't know if I ever fully realized the extent to which heartbrokenness can impact your whole life. I knew things weren't perfect, but I was completely blindsided by his decision, which he made without even a hint in my direction. That made me resent him a lot, because he took away all my power in that situation. Since then, I've mostly come to terms, mostly healed, and mostly moved on. I don't regret falling in love with him, because now I actually know that I can love another person. I'm grateful that I had the session to keep me busy and distracted through the worst of it. I'm also grateful that his true nature was revealed to me sooner rather than later so I didn't waste any more time loving him and looking out for him. I regret being fooled by the picture he presented of himself, which was so different from who he actually is. I'm relieved he doesn't live in my town any more, so I don't have to worry about running into him. I'm proud of the way I communicated my truths to him, and regret that he wasn't a big enough person to handle me. I'm grateful that I'm free to find someone else, the "right" person for me who will love me and embrace me fully. I'm scared that I won't ever actually find that right person.

My mother died. I miss her. During her final illness, her death and grieving with my sister and father, I have learned so much about myself and have grown so very, very much. Not only am I grateful for my beautiful mother, I am grateful for the deep and deepened love ties between my family and me. All the years of being hurt, misunderstood, angry, just dissolved into love, pure and simple. What a lesson! And who, especially me, would ever have thought I'd get to this place!

I got married twice...to my soul mate...the person with whom I truly believe that I was meant to spend the rest of my life. It has been profoundly emotional to connect with another person in this way. We've both been married before; he has two ex-wives and I have an ex-husband and a former boyfriend that I dated for 15 years. We are both 53 years old and can't believe that we've finally found each other at the right time. We originally met 18 years ago very shortly after ending long-term relationships with other people--my long-term dating relationship and his first marriage. Neither of us was ready for a serious relationship at that time and so we became friends. We stayed in touch off and on over the years but saw each other less frequently after having children. When I decided to convert to Judaism two years ago, I reached out to him and we reconnected, discovering that we were both separated from our spouses...again within 3 months of each other. After a few dinners, play dates with the kids, and attending synagogue together, we talked about the fact that we'd always been fond of each other and attracted and wondered whether we'd have been more than just friends if we'd met under other circumstances. So, he asked me out and we started dating. One year later, we found the house of our dreams...big enough for our 4 kids (2 of his and 2 of mine)...and he proposed while we were on vacation in Scotland. We got married at the local court house 6 weeks later, closed on the house, and moved in. Then two months later we were married in a religious ceremony performed by our rabbi and attended by our family and friends. With 4 kids under the age of 13 (plus his 23-year-old son), there are quite a few bumps on a regular basis, but my new husband says to me, "I never knew that it could be like this between two people. Now I know and I thank you for that." I'm grateful for finally finding someone who makes me want to be a better person and yet makes me feel loved, supported, and appreciated.

Going to BCI was the beginning of a journey that has showed me that Judaism comes in all different forma, and it is for me to decide for myself what is my truth. I don't have to put my beliefs and faith in a box in accordance with anyone else. I am so greatful that BCI opened my mind and led me to Pardes to continue my Jewish education and journey. It was such a great community and introduction back in to a life of Judaism that I am continuing to explore.

I was able to share with the Novices about my fear of sharing, my fear of being rejected. I acknowledged that this is an impediment. That I want to be intimate with them, and with others and in order to do that I need to be able to share on a deeper level. I am aware of my fear of being rejected and I acknowledge that I need to do some inner work to figure out where this is coming from and to move forward. I am relieved that I shared, even though it was not an easy thing to do.

Mom moved into a nursing home. The first 6 wks was in a horrible place, then she got moved to Mansfield at Thanksgiving. She is happy, well-cared for, and doing as well as she can. I go faithfully twice a week to visit her (which is more often than I was seeing her when she was living alone). The house is sold, the accounts are in order, and next week it all goes to the State for medicaid. For me, it was hellish until about January, when all of the financial stuff got taken care of. That and the guilt. But now, I am both relieved and grateful - the hardest part is over and the support my family and friends gave me made it much easier. I am especially grateful for my wonderful n patient husband.

Temma Gentles came to our temple to talk about her international Torah Cross Stitch project. The idea tp make a Torah with many others greatly inspired me. Although I have never done any stitchery, I gathered a group of woman, and together we will do 23 (4 verse) continuous portions of the Torah. I requested that my portion contain part of my 2012 Bat Mitzvah portion as they were assigning at the end of Leviticus. 26:1 celebrates Shabbat, and it is followed by my first three verses with God granting us rain for our trees and plants. As we were requested to keep track, the stitching of the words took 81 3/4 hours. After that I did two illustrations, and designed a border that will be used by our group. Coordinating the group is a continuing, but worthwhile challenge, and for which I am grateful to do.

My Bar Mitzvah was the most moving experience can imagine. I thank G_d.

My best friend, who moved abroad nearly two years ago, came back home. I'm ecstatic that he's back.

I ran my first half marathon - The Columbia Gorge Half Marathon. This was in October, but I had just started running full-time the previous June. I wasn't even thinking of running a race, but my brother said he was doing the full marathon and said I should do the half. This was about 3-4 weeks prior to the actual race, and I felt horribly unprepared. He pushed me and said that if I could run 8 miles (which was my longest to date at that time) that I could definitely do the full. The next week I ran 11 miles, which felt awful and nearly killed me - but it meant I could do it, and that gave me so much confidence. The actual race was incredible. I felt awesome, and had the support of my friends, Bryan and Mckaila, as well as their two kids. My muscles and body were exhausted, and I remember I could hardly lift my legs for the next several days - having to grab my pant leg and lift my leg when I wanted to cross my legs - but I must not have felt that bad, cause shortly after I signed up for the Portland Marathon, nearly exactly a year away.

In June I was diagnosed with an unruptured brain aneurysm. While the risk of it rupturing is low, the risk if it ruptures is catastrophic.

I met someone who looks at life very differently than me--more free...I'm more regimented. I let myself try and be more like that...it felt great to discuss life with this person and see their point of view on various topics--for example, to try and think of the present. I'm more of a past/present/future person but I read all the time about that we need to be thinking of today, the now, the present, so I tried to take their lead on this....not an easy task! But I was glad for the sharing of a different way of looking at things, inspired a bit to try to be like that more, and if I'm completely honest, a bit petrified of the unplannedness LOL

My husband's job change was the best thing that has happened to me in many years. Trapped in a miserable community in the MidWest, surrounded by only a few friends and recovering from the knowledged that my husband had been engaged in a 5 year long affair, I was ecstatic to know that we would have the opportunity to move to the West Coast. My new community is physically beautiful and spiritually renewing. I have embraced the change and become energized by meeting new people, exploring new neighborhoods and experiencing the beautiful scenery. I feel like a cancer patient in remission. Our marriage is not healed by any stretch - and perhaps it will never be- but living in a new location, away from the constant reminders of my past I have gained a new perspective and energy about my future. I am not as sad and while my social circle is considerably smaller, I do not feel the crushing sense of loneliness that engulfed me and believe their are possibilities for wholeness once again.

A few significant experiences have happened this year. I have been pushed to new levels as an individual, a partner/friend, a brother, a son, a professional, and a leader. I had a much-needed conversation with T about my decision to be single and live life on my own. I moved into my own studio with TBT. My sister moved here directly after rehab and relapsed 5 months later. I have had to come to terms with the reality of my mother's chronic Lyme disease and the ways in which it is quickly taking away her body and mind. I started, and am nearly finished with, massage therapy school. I was promoted as a team lead at work and have endured the storms of poor leadership that pushed me to the brink of my stress levels. Only in the past week has tangible hope entered the landscape for the team. Only recently have I been opening up my heart to feel the effects of all these events. They have taken a deep, significant toll on my psyche. I am tired. Tired of feeling drained and maxed out. Tired of the roller coaster. Tired of expecting myself to be perfect throughout it all. I am feeling what I am feeling, and I am allowing myself that freedom. After feeling an amount of that tiredness, I see the Love within it all. I have so much Love for those in my life - my family, my former partner/still-dear-friend, my team at work, my classmates. From the difficulty comes an appreciation for All of It. There is also a peace that comes from opening up to feel it all. It is going to be okay. I am exactly where I need to be, and I am doing exactly what I need to be doing. Perfectly imperfect. Finding my way as I walk. Trusting in the Process.

Running the LA Marathon was an incredible experience. Felt very accomplished and proud. I am grateful that I am capable of pulling off such a feat as I know many of my peers are not. When I finished, I kept saying to myself, "I just finished a marathon, I just finished a marathon" as if I was trying to reinforce what I just did. It's gratifying to know that I'm in perhaps the best shape of my life--in my mid-30's--and I have the ability to pull off these athletic and physical feats. It inspires me to keep going and keep pushing myself towards even more impressive goals. Next goal: perhaps a triathlon? :-)

It is hard to imagine that nothing significant happened in the last year. However, I'll highlight 2 things. I vacationed in Hawaii last January. The island was beautiful, but the actual experience taught me even more about what I DON'T want in a vacation. 1) Matt snored so that I basically didn't sleep well for 10 days. 2) I was stuck without a car in a resort for a large part of the trip, which bored me to tears. Honestly, I tried to make the best of it, and enjoyed things like Hilo and the waterfalls and the place of refuge and the volcano park. Overall, though, I don't like to think about it from a personal perspective. I felt helpless and isolated, and poor. This might not be my reality, but it was my mental reality for large stretches of time that I was there. Secondly, I have decided to sell my house in the spring, or at least get it prepared to sell. It, and everything in it, feel like they are weighing me down. Part of it is the neighborhood, and part of it is just habit and restlessness from being there for 20+ years. It is time for a change. I don't know what that change is yet, but it's coming.

I hate to sound like a repeat from last year, but I think the significant experience from my past year has been my summer relationship! I don't like to be the kind of person that puts all their worth in if they are dating someone, but this was a pretty big thing for me. It was a true, honest relationship; I was honest with him from the start about who I am and what I want; and I think I made some real growth. I think it taught me that I don't have to fall madly in love with someone right away, and even the least attractive of men can become attractive over time. I'm still confused about the ending of it all, and what 'just being friends' means, but maybe that's more room for growth. I'm relieved because last year, I was concerned that it would be another 10 years before I dated someone else. I'm inspired to find another relationship and execute the same things, but with hopefully different results!

I'm happy to say I have not had a terribly "significant" experience this past year. I am still learning from the significant experience of having fought colorectal cancer. That experience continues to color all aspects of my existence. Mortality is on my mind. I am fed up with petty things and petty people. Life is too short to waste. And yet I do waste time...see next answer :) All significant events have lessons from which to benefit. I am still benefiting from my experience...mentally and spiritually. I keep working on the physical aspects and some are hard to overcome.

Jonathan and my relationship got quite serious this year. After breaking up for a few months, we realize we wanted this to workout for real, and now we are better than ever. We also traveled the world together. Lots of love here and amazing experiences and more to come!

Windsor wrote me an e-mail as such: Juliet, Over the Christmas holiday I reread what you gave me in my mailbox several times and it struck me just how much that went between the two of us. I am an emotional coward and don’t have the right to ask forgiveness from you. You are such a wonderful person and I would like to try and make amends. If you don’t respond to this message I will know why. Windsor Lee I responded and pretty much never heard from him again. What a goddamn cad. I stupidly fell for his desire to make amends or his perceived desire to make amends. It still burns. And I still don't forgiven him. So, I had been doing well. As depressed as I became last summer I gained momentum. I began driving more, began going on group hikes, went to Switzerland a couple of times, lost weight, and began caring more about my appearance. I read spiritual literature and tried a labyrinth. Then I went backwards after his e-mail. I slowly piled on the weight, stopped caring about my looks again and I lost my drive. My anger almost paralyzed me. Time has made me feel better though. It's been 9 months since I fell for that e-mail. I was so relieved at first that he realized he had wronged me but when no contact ensued I felt so hurt. I still feel resentful. I am inspired to feel the velocity that I felt around this time last year even though I was so depressed.

My grandfather passed away last October. It has made me much more thoughtful about my family as a whole. My grandmother, my mom and her sisters don't communicate very well and I'm worried that there is going to be a rift between them if my grandmother gets sick or anything. At the same time, in my mind, since Grandmom is still okay and in their house, Grandpop is still there. I've almost never seen them apart in my whole life (I'm 38), but when my grandmother passes away I think it will be twice as hard.

The whole year was a very different one. I was away in Erasmus in Italy, Bologna. Made me feel surprised about what I'm capable of achieving by my own. Also made me realize a few things about friends, you never know when things will change. But I also met wonderful, wonderful people who I hope not to lose.

My college sweetheart and I relocated to Portland, the town where we met 25 years ago. To span a quarter of a century together fills me with both nostalgia and the urgency to move forward with the amazing woman she has become. I also finished my novel after 7 years of deliberating over it on every 10Q. Seeing it published is still a goal, but I'm experiencing immense satisfaction in the completion. Sine my writing improved during the course of it, I was inspired to begin another novel immediately. Hopefully it won't take as long to finish.

I came to realize that I can be good friends with an anti-vaxxer. They're not (usually) willfully ignorant; they've been misled, lied to, and taken advantage of. It's not their fault, and studies have shown that giving them scientific facts not only doesn't change their minds, it solidifies their beliefs! My friend is so fun to be around, and such a good mom. I'd be taking something out of my life if I stopped being her friend. Maybe I can live by example and help her see that vaccines aren't so horrible? Regardless, though, my love for her as a friend helped me see that anti-vaxxers shouldn't be demonized and defriended.

I started a relationship not as passionate or as intense as others but it is the one in which I had grown most and learnt about myself. I feel surprised.

The fact that I became the carer of my parents. It involved lot of confrontation with my mother. I encountered bad feelings from her, like distrust, blame,allegation. I don´t know how long this job will last, if I ´m able to stick with it or end it while they are still alive. Will I be able to postpone my own life and plans? Or find a way to make the best out of it?

I stumbled upon an email or ad for the Hay House Summit 2015 and invested $197 in 100 interviews of 100 authors. It was the exact thing I needed. I was ready to expand my entire being, find some more calmness, find new perspectives, etc. THEN, I started meditating for 20 minutes at night and THEN added Deepok's meditations in the morning and well, I couldn't be more grateful for this time and the peace it has brought me. The interesting thing about the meditating is that I have tried for years to meditate and haven't been able to find a way that I found enjoyable or doable. When I heard a couple of times that all you need to do it 20 minutes, I decided to set my phone for 20 minutes and viola', there you go. I realized that letting everything go and not worrying about the time was the key for me. I also have noticed that I occasionally 'choose' to not to it, like when I was visiting my mom for 10 days. It just didn't fit into the scheduled of what I wanted to do for her. It felt fine not to do it for 10 days and when I came home, I instantly was fine doing it again for 20 minutes. The shift in my being is palpable from all levels.

My husband and I decided to buy and renovate a small house for our 43-year-old disabled daughter. She had been living in my homeplace which my brother bought from Dad's estate. Living across the country, he had someone occupying the house and she had a rent-free roof. But there were on-going tensions, especially for her with her mental and physical health issues. I was worn out trying to keep the peace. It was time, my husband and I decided, to give both of them their own space. Even aside from the mess of tearing into a 1920s bungalow, issues with our contractor, our daughter's almost daily meltdowns with one or the other of us or the circumstances, the mounting investment and physical labor we put into it, it was a project fraught with doubts. Were we doing the right thing? Were we supporting her or enabling again? Was this just another "rescue" or was this a step toward her health and healing? All this was further complicated by my struggle to draw some healthy boundaries between us. I was a single parent for nearly her entire life when I remarried shortly after she turned thirteen. Puberty brought more even than I anticipated when she began to say she'd like to go to sleep and never wake up. I talked to teachers, took her for counseling and tried to be very tuned in to her moods. Her teachers hadn't noticed a problem and she rejected counseling after the therapist began to ask questions about possible sexual abuse from her father. For the next thirty years there were episodes of extreme stress, periodic meltdowns, seemingly weekly long teary phone calls, failed relationships with men, a string of therapists, and eventually the addictions of eating and spending. When it all blew up in that final meltdown, we moved her the three hours back home into Dad's house as we tried to figure out what to do next. All through these times, she seemed to grow more dependent on me, emotionally and financially. She was occupying more and more of my life. I was evermore deeply owning her grief. There are no easy routes to living with someone's mental illness. You see doctors, try remedies, change docs and remedies, tread ever so cautiously and question how to help and whether to help. You try to puzzle through the intesection of the physical and the emotional. You know she needs to make her own life but you can't see cutting the cord entirely. Where is the line? So we did the house thing with ambivalence and anxiety. Now she's moved into this pretty, upgraded little place smelling of new cabinets and fresh paint with her two shedding cats and their twin litter boxes, her litany of disabilities, her poor housekeeping habits, and her health issues, depression and anxiety. We've tapped a significant chunk of our retirement savings just before the market began to take volatile swings. How do I feel? Relieved that I am no longer caught between two people I care about. Exhausted by the project and the war of anxieties that came with it and still come with my daughter's disabilities. Anxious about what our investment might be worth if she doesn't take care of the place. Reluctantly resigned to my role as her caretaker for the rest of my life. And struggling to set those boundaries and claim my own life again while giving up those dreams of my old age that will likely never come true. "How many times must we give birth to our children?" my therapist asks. I wrote this poem thinking about the answer. SECOND BIRTH To begin loving you again is my work now. Accepting who you are, discovering how I can be generous toward the you that has come into my life differently than I expected. Like giving birth to you again, after a long hard labor, finding how to take you into my arms with both trepidation and joy, learning on the go to love and support your becoming. Maybe this is my second chance, a do-over through some shift in the stars or manipulations of angels. I will think on swaddling, patience, tenderness, encouragement, celebration, even the soothing, without coddling, of heartaches in missteps and disappointments. Letting you be robust in your strengths, giving your frailties an easy space and then praying hard for the wisdom to know when and how to set you out into the world once again, newly abled and joyfully receiving your own re-coming, stuttering, incomplete, doggedly hopeful. August 2015

Being with Edmond through the process of his mother's short illness and subsequent death inspired me to try to live every day fully, to take things as they come, to make my peace with the people in my life, to tell people I love them. Sounds so cliche but super true.

A sad yet relieving experience was the death of Charles. Yes i am relieved that he is no longer suffering yet as Rosh Hashana starts I am also saddened that he is not with us.

I switched jobs. Like a lot of folks in their 50s, I'm close to topping out in my profession in terms of salary and position, so although I wasn't necessarily happy in my old job, it took a while to find a new possibility that would work financially. I'm glad I made the change, as it's given me a new institution to learn. But I'm still frustrated by some of the same problems -- highly variant work levels, leaning towards too little work; representing an institution that I'm not always in sync with philosophically; personality issues (I'm having to come to terms with the fact that although I want the stability of working for an institution, I often don't have much respect for people at the top of that institution). I guess I still haven't found what I'm looking for professionally, but that's valuable information in and of itself.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year...I went to Israel this past June with my dad and 18 people from his Temple. I got so close to my dad planning for & going on this trip & I created a bond with a number of people on this trip as well. I was amazed & awed by some of the places we visited. I was very nervous to go leaving my husband and kids at home but I am proud of myself for going. I also felt a new connection to my Jewish roots which I am now exploring. This was the first time my dad or I had been to Israel and it was something my dad always wanted to do. I am so glad I went for so many reasons. I feel grateful my dad could and I could go to Israel.

I ended my relationship with Giles properly. We had been together for just under five years and had been through so much together. I can't think of a more important relationship in my adult life. I feel so many things: relieved; terrified; proud; sad; and angry. I have surprised myself by my ability to get up everyday and face the world without him by my side. However, the grief of no longer having him hits me in waves and can come from nowhere. I miss him terribly. I question my decision. But I also feel sure of my decision. I feel proud of my decision. And I feel like I'm on the right path although it is terrifying and new and incredibly lonely. I am my own hero.

My friend Diana got into a really bad accident in Panama. Her tour bus literally went over a cliff. Some died. Some were badly hurt, some walked away. She's been slowly regaining her motor skills and brain activity since mid-Jan. I've had so many feelings around this: guilt (it didn't happen to me), deep sadness, inspiration (to live NOW and not later), and questions. Why Diana? She's gone through so much already. And why the fuck am I still being so tentative with life when I seen how quickly it can change?

My middle son recovered from adolescence and began to find his inner balance again. I cannot express my relief and joy adequately.

Two come to mind. First, realizing that Dad has prostate cancer, which led to a series of events and accompanying emotions - mostly fear, relief, and gratitude. At this point, I'm mostly grateful for the scare, since it woke me up to the certain end of his life, while highlighting just how uncertain the date is. The other is Aoife's joining us. I'm very grateful for her presence, although it's highlighting Chovy's recalcitrance and moodiness and is not such a slam dunk for Steven.

I wrote a thesis and completed and graduated from college. It was not easy, and at times I really thought I couldn't do it. Yet somehow I made it through that final semester, dawned my green robes, and didn't trip walking across the stage. It was big. It felt big. And now it kind of sucks. I was definitely relieved at the time and so incredibly proud of myself. Finishing college is one of the biggest accomplishments of my life. But now I have lost an identity I had always known; I am no longer a student. I do not know where I'm headed or what will happen next. Few plans exist, and those that do are flimsy. So as big as the accomplishment was, it now leaves me feeling empty and confused. I can only hope that I will find the strength and courage to figure out next steps and that things will fall into place.

After four years of waiting for the ax to fall, I finally lost my house and had to leave. It is a new beginning, and I will say that Stephanie and I are much happier in our new home. Still, I feel a lingering sense of failure for having lost the old home. I feel sad that I never loved that house like it deserved to be loved, if that makes sense. I hope its new owners treat it well. This whole chapter is something I want to let go of.

Jason finished probation. Five years we did this together. I am grateful that it is finally done with and grateful that we made it through this challenge together. It made us stronger. I am relieved also. To not have to go through so many hoops for such little things.

My health was improving and I was feeling more and more energized. I moved apartments, Mom and Don, my step-father, got settled, work was going well. In August, my lung surgeon told me that there is another spot on my lung that is of concern to him. I have been undergoing tests to determine what's going on. If it's cancer, it will be the fourth different cancer (all primary) that I have had in the past 8 years. It's frustrating, anger-inducing, sad, disappointing all at the same time. The plus is that I won't be teaching this fall, so I will truly be fully retired and will have the experience of living fully without having to prepare classes.

I learned that M, My 19 yr old son was using heroine. My world spun on its access. At first, I tried to deny it. I found a needle in a laundry basket in his room. It said insulin, so with my gut turning and my shoul hurting, I told myself he had a friend that was diabetic, that had to be the answer as to why it was in his room, of course. In the back of my head I knew better but I wasn't strong enough on my own or ready to accept it. It being the reality of what was happening and the challenge that laid ahead for us all. The next night, I got a frantic weird call from M, he had just been beaten, physically beaten up, didn't have the key to his car because he dropped it from his pocket during the fight, he was 40 minutes away in a bad area in my old home town, needed his car towed & his license was in his room somewhere. I went to search for it in his room w/B my 17 yr old son and together we found needles used and new on the floor, under the bed, in a drawer, bent spoons, and pieces of aluminum foil that had something burned on them. Not one or two, multitudes beyond my imagination. Then found anti freeze under his bed. My heart ached with a sadness and pain beyond explanation. I had recently read an article a friend posted about kids making drugs from anti freeze. "Theres nothing worse then to know your child is in serious trouble, hurting and miserable." Then I said out loud, Yes Yes There Is something Worse! It could be worse, he is a live and we have a chance. I prayed to Hashem for the strength, compassion and love that I needed. I gave charity in his name, and prayed for his health well being and thanked Hashem for keeping him a live and prayed for more. So far so good, today, he is not using heroine. He came to shul, put on tefilin and heard the Shofar the 1st day. Together we prayed my Mom Me My Daughter and My sons. Hashem has blessed me with the gift of my children and family in my life; May all be written in the Book of Life! Amen

A friend who had seemingly written me off and caused a huge rift in many friendships asked to re-establish a relationship and apologized. It had been such a mystifying decision to dump me, but I knew I had to let her do what she needed to do. By not salting the earth, I left the door open for when she was ready. Though things can never be as they were, we are doing the work to move forward and to have the best relationship we can. And, the other friendships affected have the chance to heal as well. I'm extremely grateful that I had the tools and support of other friends to see me through the hurt and resentment and to make suggestions on how to process all those feelings in a productive way. I WAS resentful and hurt and sad and angry. I AM grateful and relieved and happy.

A significant experience in the past year is that I've been traveling back and forth to Aiken and Tryon in order to ride. It affected me in that it helped me to understand more deeply the boundaries of what I want to give to my riding and to discover the edges of where that ends and I prioritize my life and my friends and most importantly my relationship with Vernetta. I feel grateful for this clarity but it has been hard-won; there has been considerable angst, tears, and stress. But now I feel relief and know that this understanding will help guide me through my relationships with horses and determine where I want those to go. I think it will also help me to craft a world in horses that truly reflects me and my goals and dreams as opposed to chasing a fantasy of a dream of shoulds.

I am inspired and grateful by having been certified to teach both the Dragons Way and women's health programs of the TCM world foundation. When you're ago I could not have predicted that any of this would have been the case . I pray in the coming year that God will allow me to continue to have a gift of unlimited opportunity and wholehearted believe in this healing path. I pray in the coming year that God will allow me to continue to have a gift of unlimited opportunity and wholehearted believe in this healing path .

I broke my wrist mountain biking (after an argument with my girlfriend-total coincidence, no doubt). It took over 6 months to heal. It was painful and worrisome, because it involved a cast, then a splint, then a cast again. And after all of the talk about a long time to heal, and threats of failure from the doc, it was a great relief to finally have a working limb again.

I became clinically depressed and developed a severe anxiety disorder. I fought so hard to become the person i was before these illnesses, i lost someone i loved dearly because i became a shell of myself, a shadow a ghost. But i've finally learnt, i will never be that person ever again, I've become a stronger, more independent person who understands what it truly means to love myself and other people. I'm still not "better" maybe i never will be completely, but i've realised thats okay.

My ordination. Becoming a rabbi has thus far been the most important milestone in my whole life. I was - and continue to be - humbled, grateful, anxious, terrified, excited, and apprehensive; all at the same time.

Mostly this has been a year of recovery and healing after my wife's cancer experience, surgery and treatment. Towards July-August, perhaps I was starting to get bored again. Which is great then that we took PADI scuba diving lessons, which was the most challenging thing I have attempted that I can remember. We got through it, and it's great. Challenges suck. Having succeeded at challenges rocks.

This past year I read a book called Quiet by Susan Cain. In it, she presents her case for the value of introverts in our society today, and how they often have admirable qualities and abilities be overlooked because of our "extrovert ideal," in Cain's words, which associates a n outgoing personality with intelligence and likelihood to succeed. Quiet was an opportunity for me to reflect on myself and my place in society, which validated many of my qualms with how I am perceived and how I perceive others in my life. In every parent-teacher conference my mom ever described to me, she said that I come off as the perfect student, except that I am too quiet. Additionally, I don't know of anyone who has lied so often about throwing up to get out of parties and other events where there would surely be a lot of people, and a lot of noise. This excuse was a reflection about how I felt towards myself in these moments- someone who is "sick," who doesn't feel the right things that everyone else feels. I have never felt that meeting in large groups was enjoyable; either I talk to a small group and there are a bouncy of other people to make it distracting, or I don't really get a chance to really talk to anyone. In class, I always sit on the edge, closer to the back, but not in the last row, because it makes a bad impression to come in to school and sit as far away as I can from the teacher, but I still get the sense that I am removed from the center of things, able to watch any discussion that takes place without myself being totally engulfed by it. I am never too quick to voice my opinion, and always take a minute to think it over, by which time in class, I usually miss my window to speak up. People never really bother me about these things; usually I wind up in part with what I am looking for, the opportunity to manage myself in a way that is comfortable to me, but with the feeling that I am the only one who is happy about it; people think I'm shy or going through something difficult that's making me act weird, when really I'm just doing what seems right. Quiet was the only time I have ever had these experiences defended, and it was a very uplifting and relieving book to have read. People who prefer to spend time away from the crowd don't often seek out other people to do it, and as I mentioned, being introverted isn't something admired by institutions and culture today. It's the only time a communal sense has been introduced to the way I am; reading Quiet introduced me to people in our world and in history who have described the same things I and so many others feel in silence, with so many people who only seek out the opposite of what makes me and other introverts content. Reading this book didn't change me; it eliminated a lot of worrying I do about whether what I like is the right thing to like. I think this is the feeling people get when choosing what they really want to do in life, rather than what they think will make them successful. They know everything will be fine and dandy if they swim with the tide, and probably much easier too, and are afraid of the difficulty they will experience and the feeling of detachment that rejection of what so many others desire will bring them. Quiet was the answer to questions I've been asking myself for years, and have been worrying about alone, where I often chose to be.

The last year involved two intertwined events or realizations, series of events. My ex wrote a vicious nasty public post about me, following weeks of passive aggressive tweets, tumblr posts, facebooks posts that didn't name names but were far crueler in content. I started to realize how much they had destroyed me over the course of our relationships. That they had involved in a toxic, abusive, twisted, manipulative relationship. That I had to give up the fantasy that the relationship was ok that it hadn't irrevocably fucked me up. that that didn't mean they didn't know me that that didn't mean there isn't work i need to do to be a better person, but I don't do it for them. I would never. but. I'm relieved, resentful, glad to have become committed to being good, to figuring myself out, the why of my ptsd and the why i act the way i do, rediscovering myself, loving myself, having healthy relationships.

A friend passed away after a long fight with cancer. During those years, she did a lot to enjoy life and prepare herself for death, whether that came sooner or later. When she was told she only had 2 weeks to live, she had visitors and shared an amazingly upbeat attitude toward her impending death. She lived another 2 months and enriched the lives of the many friends and family members who visited her. I have gained a fresh, new perspective on life that will help me make better choices as I go down that path.

I had cataract, knee and oral surgery. Together they were very significant. It taught me to keep pushing back and getting back in the game. It would have been easier to sit on the couch and waste away. I am grateful it is over and glad things are looking up. I am a little resentful that I had to do these but I know this is pretty minor compared to some.

Traveled to Peru, spent a week on an Amazon River cruise and then a week in the Andes, visiting Machu Picchu, the Sacred Valley, and Cusco. It was quite an adventure. I was a bit apprehensive prior to the trip (snakes, bugs, heat, ...) but really enjoyed it. Feel very grateful to have been able to enjoy such a trip.

In 2014 I came to terms with who I am as an individual. I finally accepted the fact that I am gay, and since then I have felt the weight of the world come off my shoulders. It was very difficult to come out, since I was basically forced to tell my family. It has turned out to be one of the best things to have ever happened. I am obviously grateful and relieved. I am slightly resentful to the individual who forced me to come out to my family, but I already have discovered it did not hurt my or the relationship I have with those I love. I am inspired more than I can put into words. I have met an amazing man, named Andrew. While I am not sure how long we will last, I hope it is forever. He makes me smile all the time and I feel like I can be myself around him. He has made me care about my life again and know what it feels like to truly care about somebody in their entirety. I am inspired to be myself, despite what others may think and to make my new relationship one that lasts.

My Nan went in to care. It was involuntary, and she was absolutely furious that it happened, but it really opened our eyes to how hard her life was on her own with dementia when we cleaned out the house. Now, 10 months on, she is so much a shell of her former self that I can't help wondering if putting her in a home accelerated this or if it actually saved her life because she was a danger to herself.

I'm an instructor in a community college and lost my job about 9 months ago. It started up again this term. I'm happy to be back to work but those 9 months off taught me a lot about what really counts in my life. I'm learning to play guitar, started taking hot and regular yoga classes, joined a temple where I'm active, and got into the habit of swimming a mile, a mile and a half, or two miles daily!

Eruption of emotions at church and my stepping in with Healing Talking Circles. I am surprised that I did this. Somewhat inspired.

My husband decided to convert to Judaism - I am happy for him if this decision brings him peace, but I am sad that we will live separate lives in our faith - church had been an important part of our lives together, but we will no longer share this bond -

God there have been so many. It feels like, lately, everything is a significant experience. In the past year I: moved to Brooklyn and made it my home. Was unemployed and it was really hard. Networked like my life depended on it. Finally found a job that I loved. Dated a lot and it hurt a lot, but also sometimes didn't hurt at all. I had a one night stand, I fell deep into like with one or two people but in love with no one. I made new friends and I let go of toxic relationships and I repaired relationships that had become unhealthy. I asserted my own independence by calling my mother less and being me, on my own, more. I strengthened my home practice, my prayer practice, and my meditation practice. I went back to therapy-- not because I am in crisis (though at the time I was), but because it's important to do the work. I am working on working on my shit. All of these things were so significant. And I feel like I am finally on my way to an integrated self sufficiency. I feel grateful to be given the space to figure out my life and my feelings about all of these things. I feel relieved that I am not in a rut, rather, that I am actively moving myself through the world. Bringing myself with energy into an embodied place. I'm working on it. And I'm grateful and inspired by that. It's my hope that that is where I am moving. Towards that place.

The situation with lisa was significant for me. I am relieved. I am overly loyal and don't always give appropriate feedback. I am so glad she left and aurora is here. What a joy. I shifted from change - oh no-- to RENEWAL, fabulous attitude.

I had an issue w/ the temple and rabbi and almost resigned, I felt that after being treated badly during my last year as president, the rabbi/ed director coming down hard on my son was too much. The rabbi and I talked, and I could tell how upset he was. I stayed in the temple, and it felt like coming home when I went to my first service after resolving things.

I just got a job at a traditional high school, after working in alternative education for many years. It is extremely challenging but I am deeply grateful for it. I hope I can do the kind of job I want to do there, and make a positive difference for kids. Time will tell.

This past year I proposed to the love of my life. I am so awestruck by the way that things happen and how they never go according to plan, but eventually work out in God's own timing. Being engaged and developing my relationship with my fiancee has been incredible as well. I can clearly say that I have learned more about myself in developing our relationship and my focus on her. She encourages me to better myself everyday, and it is a real blessing to have such a partner in my life. I am so excited to start our lives together, and though we have had a lot of difficulties, which have made me second guess my decision at times (she has had this too), our relationship is growing even more rapidly as we approach the wedding.

I transferred into SDSU! I began my junior year this fall. I really am starting to feel like I can get this done! I am super grateful, very relieved and extremely inspired to continue. I also was treated to a wonderful road trip with my love that was awe inspiring. I had never experienced anything like it. Beautiful trip, and a wonderful time with an amazing man.

This last year I both changed careers and was then subsequently fired from my first position in my new role as an RN. The change of career was a wonderful moment, and one that I am quite grateful for. - At first, the termination of employment made me feel like a failure, but shortly after the termination I was afforded the opportunity to start working within an organization that I'd had my eyes on for quite a long time - at a closer location to my home, at a higher rate of salary and with a much better benefit package. It did leave me feeling slightly inspired as having gotten a taste of what nursing should be (which wasn't so in the previous position from which I was let go) has given me the oomph to really push forward in my career aspirations.

This past year my brother in-law Michael passed away and it had a profound effect on my feelings towards reaching out to people. I was not in contact with him a lot but when ever we would speak to each other we had great conversation. No one should die at 48 years old, especially Michael. He experienced so many downs in his life and he didn't deserve it. But now I know that G-D needed him to watch over a group of children in heaven and I know he is watching down from heaven and keeping a close eye on us to protect us.

I went on an incredible trip this summer for which I am so grateful. I left the Green Tortoise adventure travel bus with new friends, amazing experiences, and the feeling of being loved and appreciated.

One of the things I read last year in my answers was regarding school. I was *so* sure that I was going to be finished with my associate's degree by now. I'm not, but the end is in sight, with my undergrad program chosen. Hopefully I will get accepted, succeed, and find a career better suited to myself. I'm not used to feeling proud of my efforts--I somehow feel as though I am cheating by progressing at this rate. Sometimes I think it won't make a difference, or that I'm only doing it to feel as though I will be more equal among my peers. As I write this, I am afraid.

I'm on the way to moving to Charlotte. I rented my apartment and moved in with a very dear friend around the corner from work. This change has made such a difference in my life. I only have a 3 minute commute to work now. Ever since deciding to move to Charlotte, my life has gotten better and better.

Worked at Summer Camp. I am so lucky and blessed for that opportunity. It felt right, like I fit, to play rabbi. Learning with kids and from kids. Leading services and being the person that people go to for religion was amazing and it killed a lot of doubts that I had had. They're coming back but I need to stay strong and work toward my goals. G-d gave me a solid confirmation and I need to listen.

I gave a concert. A huge, successful, lucrative, spiritual, vibrant, wonderful, awesome concert. Classy, creative, fun, and amazing. I am so proud, it was stressful, and fun, I can do anything i set my creative mind on and am inspired that my instincts are good. Now why don't I believe it the rest of the time? I appeared with a large orchestra in front of 2000 people, i had a great review in the newspaper, i brought the house down...it was the thrill of a lifetime, those 7 minutes...and my own team at work didn't fully appreciate how special it was. A mountain top experience for me, I need to receive my adulation elsewhere...it's not coming from my partners at the office.

turned 60 in January! what an event, I thought it would be dreadful but it actually was freeing! In life we're all judged by what we accomplish, who we are, where we live. But being 60 happens, if you prepare for it or not! How you feel about it is your decision.

I had my ankle replaced with a prosthesis. I am still not sure how I feel. Better, certainly, tired of being asked about it, certainly. In general, I don't want to hear, or talk about, health issues. Boring, irritating, distracting me from more important topics of discussion.

I found someone great to do EMDR therapy with in my final attempt (after having given up after working with two other EMDR therapists over the past few years who did not actually do EMDR) to find something to heal my PTSD. I was so very grateful that I found the energy to try one more time! I was relieved when I realized after a few sessions that it really was helping!!

I accepted a full time position at the counseling agency where I was consulting. I find that I am happy in a way I never was before. I am working for a small agency which respects both the people it serves and its workers. Every day I go to work is a joy. I get to use my skills in a greatly meaningful way. I can consult with experienced and talented coworkers. It is a whole new experience to find this kind of atmosphere in a work place. I am surprised: I continue to pinch myself to make sure I am awake. I walk around with smiles on my face. I am grateful and inspired.

I went through the process of getting pregnant. It took four attempts, each more medicated than the last. I'm now 10 weeks pregnant, and everything seems to be going well. Friends and family have all been super supportive. I'm definitely feeling excited, just not as ecstatic as I thought I would... I guess because it's REAL now, which means a lot of serious stuff is going to happen. It's more sobering than I expected.

I was laid off from my job that I hated and found a job that I am good at and really enjoy (most days). It made me realize that life is really short and that I shouldn't wake up every day hating the place that I have to go work at. I am very relieved.

I changed schools this year. It was a mix of emotions but, ultimately, I am glad I did it. I am much happier at my new school and I feel so much more creative. Already I have published a book I put off for 2 years and am growing more comfortable with my colleagues.

I joined the board of my childhood camp, and it has been a mixed experience to say the least. I joined it out of a sense of obligation and commitment, but have largely failed to follow through. Whenever I've overcome my reticence (it's even fear) I've actually done pretty well, but the task always seems so daunting and I'm afraid not only of failing, but of it sapping my energy and leaving me with more regrets than fulfillment.

Last year this was easy because I got married. This year feels a lot less clear. I'm sure something significant happened, but mostly I feel like I was slogging through the year. I really don't want to just be slogging through next year. Just as last year was getting started I had some hard family stuff come up that caught me off-guard. I've also spent a lot of the year frustrated and angry that my recovery from my bone marrow transplant and chronic pain and chronic GVHD and chronic everything are so . . . chronic. I feel like I take a step forward and two back. Every time I have a few good days in a row, I get pummeled by hard days during which I feel pretty rotten. It's been over four years. I'm so very tired of not feeling good. However, I'm also very aware of how lucky I am. So then I end up feeling badly that I'm not happier, more content with whatever life I have because it's life. So many patients I've known have died. But instead of happier and more content, I feel lonely. I don't think I so much have survivor guilt as survivor loneliness. Hardly anyone really gets what I've lived through. And I don't want to be anyone's inspiration. I don't want to be a warrior, or a hero. Most of this year, I just wanted my life back. I feel like moving into 5776 for me is partly just being able to start to build a life - this life - and grieve and move on from the life I had which I'd still prefer. It was a really good life and I felt like I was living it really well. Now everything is a little . . . smaller. So - significant experience? Not really so much. More just many small not so significant experiences that leave me everything. Grateful. Relieved. Resentful. Inspired. All of it.

My grandfather passed away. I am eternally grateful that he lived 89 wonderful years and that my mom and I were able to be in Israel (where he was) when he passed away. In Jerusalem they don't wait for funerals for anything or anyone, and I'm so glad my mom (his oldest daughter) was able to be there for the funeral.

There weren't HUGE experiences like last year losing baby. These were more like waves in the sea of life - natural and normal for where we are in life, but still very, very important: 1) My 2.5-year-old daughter started nursery school. It was a big moment for us both to face separating. We both have struggled with it and have ups and downs, but it is healthy and right. It is bittersweet because each year is a little more letting go. I also LOVE having some free time. I am teaching flute lessons, doing freelance editing work, and able to begin taking a little more care of ME which is new since having her. 2) Brad and I have struggled harder than we ever have this past year. We still don't know if he has a personality disorder or OCD or what, but being in a relationship with him is very very hard for us both. I know I am not perfect, but I have realized this year that it is not all me. I am relived, resentful of the extra work I have to do for our family because of his issues and inability to do things, a bit resentful at having to be the stronger one most of the time, and also inspired to try to figure out how to fully accept him for who he is so that I can move forward in a marriage that I want to last.

I got a promotion. Grateful for the opportunity to operating at the level that I know I should be and using the full of my knowledge. I wanted growth, I got it.

I started to gain a more pleasurable acceptance of my circumstances. At the outset, not much has changed but I began to embrace who I am in the truest sense of the word and I just became more grateful for it, whether it's good or bad. I am very much inspired to do better and just be.

Miscarriage. Made me sad and tense. It dragged out. I had to be with my sadness as trying to grateful despite my sadness caused my neck to seize up. I'm allowed to be sad. To think things suck. To be pissed off and frustrated. I think this reminder is freeing.

My son's sobriety. It was shocking and scary to discover he had an issue, but incredibly profound to watch him embrace change and spirituality. I am grateful and relieved and hopeful for the future and glad he has this opportunity for growth.

Clearly, the most significant experience that happened this past year happened on May 9th at 10:50pm. I delivered Charlie Ruby via C-section after 23 hours of labor. I didn't even get to see her right away, the nurses whisked her off to clean her and make sure everything was ok, and at that point, I was so exhausted, hungry, and overwhelmed that I don't even know what I was feeling. It wasn't the surreal moment that you see on TV, so it was all a little strange. After so much anticipation, she was finally part of the world and we were in charge of making sure she was safe and healthy. I think that I have (4 months later) transitioned into motherhood in the best possible way. I love being Charlie's mommy and I have loved stepping into this role. I feel confident in what I am doing with her (most of the time), and I love, love, LOVE being around her. Watching her learn new things every day, watching her develop and grow, getting her to laugh, watching her smile and create her own connections to the people that we love has been more rewarding than I could have imagined. She's gorgeous and I am in awe of what my body was able to create and proud of myself for working hard to be the best possible mommy that I can be for my stunning little human.

I don't know quite what to say. I'm not sure there were that many moments that were Significant, and that's actually beautiful. I can only think of small moments that had great meaning - taking my son to his first real play and watching him belly laugh so loud and genuinely that the audience watched him as much as the actors for a while; celebrating 18 years of friendship with my college roommates; pumpkin picking; hand making a pair of felt sea turtle flippers for Halloween; a few great and memorable meals; a lot of laughter and love and family. All small. So many more where those came from. I'm grateful. I'm worried that if I want more, like all that AND some giant moments, I'll jinx things.

I'm probably going on availability heuristic, but one of the scariest moments of last year was the August pregnancy scare in our house. As I now know, everything turned out OK, but I was both sleepless and sick for three days just thinking about the possibility of dealing with the issue. Needless to say, I was relieved when the scare became nothing but that. However, the lingering effects were even more difficult. I realized how much I had been hurting my wife by not getting a vasectomy sooner. I had been so concerned about not being able to have kids if we did not patch things up. Now I realize that I'll be able to patch things up much better by taking care of that issue.

I traveled to Europe for the first time! I'm writing this from the airport in Rome, heading back to Paris. I've seen so much and had so many new experiences in the last few days and truly felt alive, plus I've solidified friendships (with Jusan, reconnected with Matthieu in London). It makes me realize there is so much more to life than working at a desk everyday. I NEED to get out there.

My mom and my sister decided that they were going to surprise me with a vacation to the US. They bought non-refunadable (!!!) tickets that couldn't be changed for a different date, without asking if/when I could leave work for two weeks. Of course there was no way I could use the tickets, and it *killed* me. I cried so hard I couldn't see the stupid salad I was making for supper that night. - The worst part: When I showed my sister how angry I was about how they did this, she must have spoken to my mom about it, who wrote me an email telling me how wrongly I had behaved, and that I had made my sister CRY, and I owe her an apology. She ended with "I will talk no further on the subject". That totally pissed me off. Nobody gets to send me an email with no possibility for me to answer. - My main learning from all this: Neither my mom nor my sister either know or care what my day is like, what my work is like. It made my sister's visit this summer with her family rather devoid of feeling for me. I made the effort to be with them more for the kids, less for me. I'm still pissed off.

I started writing fiction. I'm inspired, amazed, and challenged. It is broadening my horizons.

My step-father died on May 10th, Mother's Day. My mother and I were at his bedside, having just read out loud an email from his mother to him about how much she loved him. Shortly afterwards, he started to gasp and writhe around, saying "Help me, help me" and "It hurts." We tried to soothe him by giving him morphine and Haldol, but it didn't help, and suddenly he gasped and stopped moving. We both watched him for a minute or so and then I got my mother's stethoscope so we could listen to his heart. All I heard were gurgles, as his circulation slowed. Were we were very clinical in the moment, reverting to our nurse roles, and we did not cry or talk, except to call and text hospice and family. This was the first time that I had seen someone die. It was interesting, in a clinical way, to finally observe this event. I was a little jealous of my classmates who got to see someone die during clinical. It was also sad, to think that my step-father, a very proud, independent, and active man, died like that, confused, weak, incontinent, and in pain. I was relieved that he died, that he did not linger on in his confused and bedridden state, for himself and for me, because I had the primary responsibility of caring for him.

This year I experienced my first true heartbreak. It is honestly the hardest thing I've ever done and I still miss him more than I thought I ever would because I always thought we'd be together forever. The hardest part is that there wasn't any reason for the breakup. We were happy and working together towards an amazing future when one day he just said he was over it. I'm trying to understand that it has nothing to do with me and everything to do with what he's going through in his own world, but it doesn't make it any easier when all I want to do is love him and help him and be with him.

This past year I fell in love with the greatest girl in the world. She pushes me and challenges me to be the best I can be. Specifically, the most memorable experience was when I told her I loved her... well that I might love her. In that moment, I was the most vulnerable I have ever been. I completely succumbed to my emotions in a way I never have done before. It has only been 2.5 months, but I know that we will be together forever and always.

Mia and I went on a vacation this past summer to California. For me I guess since she got a significant scholarship to Westmont, try $32,000, I was hoping that she would go to Westmont and somehow find her way back to Jesus. However since I discovered she had such low grades, three C's and a B, I told her that she couldn't go to Westmont. It would be a very expensive experiment. She was not very impressed with the campus anyway. She said it reminded her of camping. I suppose the highlight of the trip was when we went to Disneyland and Sheila ran around and saw the parades and rode on the cars in cars land and had a lot of fun. Lisa was very hospitable. We got to stay with her. She took us out to lunch. I suppose the highlight was when she took us to the Ivy in Beverly Hills and spent about $200 on our meal. Mia's mouth would not shut she was so surprised. The beaches were fantastic! Some of my favorite days were spent in Carpenter Rhea in the beautiful soft sand and the golden sun sets. I had another nice day after Mia left to go to the five SOS concert, Sheila and I and her friend Lynn and her other friend Joy and her daughter we all went to the Santa Barbara zoo. I'll never forget the beautiful birds that were flying on the beach in a big circle around and around and around. We must have photographed those birds for hours.

I had a beautiful baby girl and I'm extremely grateful.

Blake and I have had so many conversations recently about being together forever. I think that counts as one experience, even though in my brain it's a lot of moments that culminate in a feeling, not really an experience. I don't know if that makes sense. I feel much more grounded, in the best way, as a result. I know that we are there for each other always. Always has a really beautiful constancy to it. I definitely am grateful that Blake is in my life and that we both believe that we will be in each other's lives forever. I feel like my life is more complete, which is really mind blowing to feel at this age. I am so lucky.

In February I hopped on a plane and flew to the other side of the world. Australia has been a fantastic experience so far. I've experienced so much, met so many new people and feel like my horizons and life experience have been broadened significantly. Really great decision.

i finally got book 3 out and shlomie freundlich sold 1200 of the 3 volumes! this was a relief to me. also, the fact that chani and i made the new floor (even if when i next read this, I hope and pray it will be from our OWN home preferably far from my in-laws), we proved to ourselves that we were B"H able to fund such a large project (30k+),

The second night of my son's life, I was sitting up in the hospital bed, holding his tiny 7.5lb bare body to my bare chest, nursing him and staring down in wonder. My husband was asleep in the recliner, and I was just in awe of this tiny person and how our bodies were still helping each other. It felt like we were the only two awake in the whole hospital. Then I heard softly from the hallway the lullaby played when a baby is born. There was another mother, like me, with a brand new baby, like mine. New life and a new miracle, and I was somehow a part of it, down the hall, in my dark room, nursing my baby, praying for this new baby and family I wouldn't meet.

I received a scholarship for a documentary project that I'd been developing for a long time. It felt as though the hard work paid off and that it was recognised, that I was recognised as a filmmaker. Sometimes I feel like a fraud because I talk a lot more about films than actually making them. Now I feel a different kind of pressure and I know that's good too and important for this project to move along at last. At the same time I want to be careful, because I have waited and worked on researching and planning the film for so long that I now have extremely great expectations. It has to be a masterpiece, because it took so long. But that's a trap. I have to be just as open and inventive and pragmatic about making the documentary as I was when I started working on the idea. Being overambitious is a trap I have fallen into before creatively, really wanting to prove something, to others, to myself, rather than making the film that was most true to me. Usually the work that I don't put a lot of thought into, that I enjoy doing, but sort of produce on the side - the light, fun projects I don't care about so much - turns out to be the strongest, that represents me and my character well. Now I want to somehow try to approach this long-term documentary project in the same way, but how is that even possible? So in short my answer to the question above would be: I feel proud, happy, grateful to be given the opportunity to work on my documentary, but I am also nervous, cautious, scared.

I fell in love and I am totally in a whirlwind of fear of falling without being caught but absolute comfort that this man is incredible and supposed to be with me He is calming and fun and helps me feel like I can do anything in this world. I hope that this feeling is just the beginning

I'm inspired and hurting. I ask myself if it is reasonable to continue thinking in all we did together. Yours photos and albums. Your shirts and socks and vests. As I look at them and I realize that you're gone. The past 5 at my face ?. The present laughs with me with giggles mocking from the uncertainty that the future holds. I try to forget the past and I see you in my daily tasks. Many of them shared with our grandson who many times looked at you hoping that you wouldn't go. Go through the door and not return to us. He do know about the trip you made to the other side. My requests, his wishes were not strong enough to keep you alive and you left us forever

In mid-January, my employer came to tell me that my position was being eliminated. We were on the upswing despite the parent organization being in a downturn. We had momentum. I had commitments from people to help raise money. We were making progress on many fronts. For the first two days, I felt any, resentful, bitter. Soon after, however, I was overwhelmed by a sense of relief. For a long time, I no longer had confidence in the organization nor did I feel aligned with it. I felt that it had long ago given up on the principles to which it was once committed. I found it more and more challenging to justify its decisions and a lack of confidence in its ability or desire to steward donations to us. In the end, something better always comes along and it did!

I met and dated a man for six months until he moved to another state to pursue an amazing career opportunity. We are different in so many ways. He is a very conservative Republican of 100% Norwegian-American heritage. He grew up on a monoculture agribusiness farm in Minnesota eight miles from the Canadian border. He believes in small government. He has had little to no interaction with Jews, black people, gays and lesbians, etc., and sometimes his comments reflected an underlying comfort in embracing negative stereotypes based in ignorance. He gets his news from Fox and does not believe in global warming. Needless to say, none of these describe me. Since my divorce I have been dating "rednecks," mainly because they are the men I have been meeting where I live. And I have had an open mind and open heart to new experiences and to finding common ground. It has made me better able to understand and connect to people whom I had grown up judging and stereotyping in my own ignorance and lack of personal interaction. While I am discovering the dark underside of redneck culture that is profoundly racist and that endorses alcohol abuse, I have also developed an appreciation for hunting culture, for military service, and for working with ones' hands for a living. None of these were values I was raised to respect, and I have become more tolerant--one of my fundamental goals and values as I strive to recognize the inherent dignity and worth of each person. Overall I am grateful to have had the opportunity to to get to know this man deeply and on a personal level. But I also know without a doubt that the relationship did not have a long term future and that I did not want to share my life with him. Fortunately he felt exactly the same way.

Becoming broken- finding that I was unable to do the things that I used to do. That I had no power whatsoever. That no matter how much I tried to create change, nothing was going to come out of it. In the end, I chose to leave. I am not sure if leaving is giving up or if leaving is the right thing. I think that it is the right thing for me, because I would not be able to function in that situation. But at the same time I worry that I gave up the fight, and just left people to fight because I had an easy way out.

Acknowledging that my mother has Alzheimer's, and other health issues in my extended family. This has made me even more grateful for what I have.

The most significant experience I had this year was losing a significant amount of my vision. This happened on November 21. 17 years ago I had lost some vision in my right eye and on 11/21 I lost most of my vision in my left eye. I have had to figure out with the help of George and other professionals how to navigate. I cannot drive and that has limited me. I had to fight to return to work. I decided to retire in June. I have learned a lot through this experience, but I am not grateful or inspired. I am functioning and in the "it could be worse" department I guess I am grateful that I am not totally blind. I am grateful for having a optometrist husband who is also very understanding.

Following a very busy work winter, my husband and then my son both ended up in the hospital within a week of each other. It was not serious, but required surgery and treatment, so it was stressful. Following that, my husband took some time to recover and hasn't worked since February. He has his own video business that is project based, and very thankfully, he had a very successful year, so we were able to make it through, but it is coming to the end of our savings and he still doesn't have much work lined up. His industry is cyclical, and obviously this was a slow year, but it's getting very nerve wracking as we come to the end of our savings. In the meantime, I have been working to prepare myself for my own business, but it is very difficult when you are taking care of two kids and a husband who is home all the time. I have finally rented space for my yoga and massage business, and am anxious to get it going. It's exciting for me, but there is that part that just isn't free to just enjoy it. There is pressure. Pressure not to spend a dime to get it going, pressure to make money quick, pressure of still having to care for the family and worry about how I'll be able to do both and remain present and balanced. It was a very difficult year for sure, but when I look back on last year's answers, I see slow, methodical progress toward what I ultimately want my life to look like. I hope that when it does, what I want it to look like hasn't significantly changed! I'm very grateful to my husband who works extremely hard when he works and was able to provide a much needed financial cushion for hi to take the time that he needed initially to heal. Unfortunately, following the physical healing, he's sunk into a serious funk that he's now trying to come out of. Whatever it is that he had to work out this year, I'm grateful that we had the security to allow that to happen. I'm inspired to begin my new business and relieved to have a place of my own to go to not only work with others as they try to come to a more balanced life, but to give myself some private space for my own sense of peace and balance.

I have just relocated from my English-speaking city to one in which the primary language of life and business is French. The aim is to radically improve my ability to communicate in French. It's a brand new relocation - I am at the beginning of my second week, so it's hard to tell the longer-term implications. I'm grateful for the opportunity and am certainly inspired by the city. Let's see what I think 6 months from now!

I meet a lovely fellow who loves me and whom I love. I am very grateful.

I was hit with a disease I had never even heard of before. Extremely ill for three months. Such an event puts things into perspective. I'm now very selective of how I use my time and my quality of life has greatly increased.

I was in a head-on car accident with my children in the car. The air bags deployed and the front of the car crumpled. My kids were taken to the children's hospital - my daughter on a backboard - while I was taken to the adult's one, also on a backboard. Thankfully, we are all OK. The accident has made me that much more grateful for my family and thankful for their health. I realize life can change on a dime and it's very important to try and live well - don't have regrets: tell your loved ones and friends you love them and don't put off doing the important things.

I got married!!!! Sekani and I were married on April 3, and went on a honeymoon weekend in Las Vegas, NV. In some ways, I am relieved; I had a few moments where I thought that this would never be a reality. Overwhelmingly, though, I am content. I feel that in my marriage, I can put my husband first - that I can trust him - and that I will not regret it. Even 5.5 months later, I still look forward to the rest of our lives.

"Flipped" a large auditorium classroom. Lots of work, lots of stress. Results less than stellar, but better than the status quo... Relieved, I guess... Doing it with other courses, added "flipping" to the repertoire.

I got into IB classes this year, it inspired me to try harder and spend more time studying so I could have good grades. I hope that indeed I will have good grades this year.

Planning my wedding has been quite an experience. I have been lucky enough to have a family that is helping out with whatever needed. Getting married in October is something that I know will change my life forever and it is something that scares me at the same time. I am so grateful for the past 3.5 years with Mike. He has taught me so much about myself. However, there is still that piece of me that finds it difficult to trust 100% because of past experiences. I also hope that this marriage does not change any relationships I currently have with my family. Uncle Tom dying was a lot to handle as well. Thinking about how my grandfather had to bury his son is a terrible feeling. It is so hard to think that perhaps if he had shared how sick he was with us sooner, that there may have been a chance things could have gotten better. Listening to his fellow Franciscans talk about him and faith in general really inspired me. It was the first time in so many years, if not ever, that I actually felt like I believed what they were saying and that the message they provide is more realistic. It has made me want to get myself involved in some sort of faith again. That is my goal for this year.

I guess technically it happened last year, but I started a new job and it's impacted me greatly. I am at once grateful, relieved, resentful, and inspired. And I just resolved that it's not the right job for me at all. So now I have to be the best I can be in this job, with very high stakes, while actively looking for another one. Oh, and I just found out I'm pregnant.

Getting support at work. And reaching out to friends when I need them. Basically, it's new to ask for help but it's really nice to have the network and be able to use it. I'm really lucky.

I would say that the thing that has impacted me the most was my partner unexpectedly losing his job. It has been a long time since I've been poor (though I'm still very rich by the standards of truly impoverished people, both in this country and others), and it's been amazing how much money stress affects things. It has put a HUGE strain on our emotional relationship, and our sex life, as well as our bank accounts and physical health. In some ways, it's lucky; he will be back to work soon and we will be operating with a more austere lifestyle, planning and budgeting better than we did before. And while I've always had gratitude for the little things, I appreciated small treats like movies or even getting an ice cream. And it's given me so much more empathy for those who don't have a financial light at the end of the tunnel, and who are stuck in poverty for forever.

We decided to sell our house to relieve some of the financial burden we have been under. When the final decision was made, I had the best night sleep I had had in years. We now are looking forward to the future and not fearing it. The relief we both felt is immeasurable.

Standing up to my husband and calling him on some things. I have been afraid to do this since it all happened. Not sure what I am afraid of. I want him to be accountable and to say how he feels, but guess I am worried about the finality of it once everything is it. But I have done it a little bit. It has been very disappointing since he doesn't respond at all!!!! So it leaves me hanging even more

I moved into a house with Ryan this year, in March. It's been way easier than I ever thought it would be. Perhaps in the beginning months I had to get over feeling like our chore (mostly cooking) responsibilities weren't balanced evenly. However, Ryan's worked more on his end on that part and I've learned to stop counting. Sure, I'd love if there was less cat hair on things and if Ryan was neater than I am, but so far we've meshed so seamlessly. It's almost to smooth to trust. I'm grateful and relieved that I started this adventure with someone who has so much love to give. I'm also afraid that I'll mess it up. I'm simultaneously feeling like I'm in paradise and terrified that I've gotten to comfortable and have stopped growing. I hope I figure an answer to these feelings by the time I read this answer again next year.

I quit my job in May. I believed it was the right thing to do - not to move to Connecticut. I felt like a lemming- just naturally following the flow wherever. But now I'm where I usually end up - not knowing what I want to do or where I want to do it. Doing work that's not motivating- trying to bring my own twist to it but not trying very hard. And for some reason I can't quite understand- I can't seem to find a new job. Nobody wants me. I feel like interviews go well but I never get the role. Do I regret leaving GE? Only because I miss the security. So fear of the future/ unknown should not mean I regret the decision. I hope to be inspired by my decision - but maybe only in the new year.

My ex took me back to court. He started asking for custody and guardianship of our two children even though he hadn't seen them in several years. He's a total deadbeat and expects our kids to contact him and he has made no effort to be in their lives. I am resentful of him and the situation. He also wants to pay little to no child support. I've been raising them and working full time...

My daughter's illness, hospitalization and slow recovery - with the many bumps along the way. It has been a devastating year. I was too worn out to be resentful, but am hopeful that the worst is behind us. May this year be better!

My neighbors getting permission to parcel their property next to me has had a great impact on the way I think about my future. I was incredibly stressed by the situation and the duration of it. I am relieved to have a conclusion to that portion of the process. I am angry that someone can just waltz in and alter my whole world in terms of my personal security , financial security and overall sense of well being. I am however grateful that all of this has happened as it has opened my thinking and dramatically changed my personal priorities.

Graduating with my Master's Degree! 2 and a half years of hard work- delicately balancing working full time, going to school at night and a teeny bit of a social life. I'm actually all of the words in the question.. I'm grateful that I had the opportunity to get a Master's Degree- that I had the physical, emotional and financial support from my loved ones (and the bank). I'm Relieved that it's over and I can take some time to do things for myself. I'm Resentful that I still don't know exactly what I want to do with my life, but I'm trying to feel grateful that I have the skill set to do so many things. I'm inspired by my colleagues, by the work I completed, by the success of my thesis .and and and..

The most significant experience of this year was giving birth. It's truly incredible what a woman's body is capable of doing. It was the most intense, scary, invigorating, sensational, and amazing thing I've ever done. I am so grateful that my body allowed me to give birth the way I wanted to - naturally, no drugs, labored mostly at home. There were definitely points where I was certain I couldn't go on. The sensations were so intense and I kept thinking "this is going to get worse and I can't do this". But Ben was amazing and so was our doula. They both supported me and made me feel so strong. Once I passed the transitional contractions, giving birth was the easy part. I am so grateful for this experience.

I have had a prolapsed disc as of August last year. It has caused me a year of pain, misery, depression, anxiety and made me a sad person. I have missed out on some things because of it and felt like I enjoyed things much less. I have had to have an operation for it in August and I'm still waiting to see if it has worked as I still have some ongoing pain. I hope this time next year I am no longer in pain.

D and I decided it was time to end our relationship. That served as the catalyst for me to make other change, namely, moving out of Brooklyn and into my own apartment. It has also meant that I have been single this year for the first time during my five years in New York. The breakup taught me something great: I can survive it and even thrive afterwards. Not every moment has been great. There were a lot toward the end of the summer where I felt lonely and isolated, and wished I could find someone to spend time with, travel with, and share my life with. C'est la -- he's not here yet. In pursuing the breakup, I suppose I feel I am placing my bet on finding a real relationship, a bashert one, rather than what D and I had, which just wasn't that and never would be. I find that inspiring and challenging all at once and occasionally feel very scared that none of it will pan out and I'm destined to be a cat lady. But even if that happens, isn't it better knowing I was true to myself rather than staying in a comfortable yet ultimately imperfect, unsatisfying relationship?

This past year I got married! I met the best person I've ever known when I was 38--so happy I waited--and we were married 2 weeks before my 40th birthday. The wedding was beautiful, meaningful and very, very fun. The marriage is all of those things as well. However, the planning was a living nightmare because I do not handle stress well and was doing everything solo (mostly by choice). We didn't even like each other some days during that time because I would be stressed and snap at him. He would retreat and resent me, as I was busy resenting him for not comforting me during my stressful time (I am sure I was not terribly approachable). Our insane and crazy love for each other got us through it (along with a couple sessions with our rabbi) and we came out stronger and much more in tune with each other so I suppose that is the silver lining. Because we got through so much during the planning, our marriage is stronger. We are able to communicate, to fight rarely but in a healthy way, to appreciate each other more than before. We both love each other more every day. We are growing together, both striving always to be a better person today than yesterday, for ourselves and each other. We only dated a couple of months before talking about marriage. Our entire relationship was fast-tracked and now we're experiencing growing pains because now all of the sudden we are just settling into our roles and we have to try to get pregnant right away (after a very fun summer). We work together on our wonderful, secure, loving relationship and I'm excited to see where we are next year when I read this answer. We are stupidly happy and I truly believe we always will be, because even when I am annoyed/angry with him, I'd rather be near him than not (and I know the feeling is mutual). So grateful. So happy.

My oldest started kindergarten. My fears about "the system" have kicked up significantly and he loves it, but has big cries before going in. It's hard to leave him crying and upset when I know the teachers don't have attention for it. And all my own school experiences are kicking up.

I learned my husband cheated on me. I have felt so many things, from shock, anger, embarrassment, disgust, support, and hope, to nothingness, uncertainty and emotional numbness. Maybe in the future I will be relieved that it was a moment in my life that forced me to be deliberate and tuned-in to my decisions. Perhaps our relationship will come out stronger and I will learn about myself in deeper ways. Perhaps not.

I got divorced, this is really the back drop for the real event. I don't want to focus on the negative, but rather that that negative opened the door for me to meet and fall in love with someone special.

Oh, wow. A couple of things, actually. First, I finally finished my MPH back in May. People keep congratulating me, which is nice, but the greater exhilaration, and the complete depression, too, to be honest, came after I finished my classes. The biggest part of my mental dissonance between anthropology and public health came from schlepping back and forth between Storrs and Farmington, and between two different mindsets and two different cohorts entirely, so not having to be on two campuses at once was definitely an adjustment. I'm proud of having earned my MPH, though - it's a huge achievement for me, and I'm glad to have finished it. Hopefully, when I answer these questions next year, I'll have earned my PhD as well. The other significant experience is that I entered a new relationship back in April. It had been 15 months since I'd been in a relationship, and I was a bit rusty, but this relationship feels a lot more... real. Well, more like an adult relationship that I could see turning into marriage. He and I are quite serious and have met each other's friends and families, and I'm hoping that it continues as well as it has been. He and I are already discussing moving in together at some point, and I hope that we continue in that direction.

After 3 years of working my heart out for a company, trying hard to get traction and demonstrate that my work is appropriate, valuable and beneficial to the company's culture, my contract was ended by a new manager. I was resentful at first as I never received any direct feedback about how to tweak my work to scale it to what the company wanted (my former Director couldn't figure out what they wanted either so couldn't help me with this and my only instructions came from her). Then, I was relieved. I spent 3 years stressed beyond belief, killing myself and for what? I then became frustrated with myself. Why would I not just recognize that it wasn't a good fit and move on? What is it about me and my way of being that I persevere to the point of harming my mental and physical health? It also made me more introspective about the cues I look for... how do I determine when I've had enough? that it's time to leave? that my health is suffering? 3 months later I'm still trying to find myself as my confidence in my skills has taken a beating despite all the feedback in my new job being really positive. I feel the insecurities and paranoia rise often and am trying to find coping mechanisms to work through these things instead of letting them negatively impact my future.

I fell in a tub in a hot springs resort, and hit my head, and was in significant pain for a while. My neck is still affected, and probably always will be. I am resentful of the negligence, but overall, grateful that it wasn't worse, and that I am still basically healthy.

The most significant experience that has happened to me this past year would have to be getting laid off in February. Managing to be successfully employed since the age of 18 (always working) being "unemployed" was a shift for me. After getting my bearings and realizing I would survive, I have been inspired like never before. I now have the opportunity to experience new things, explore, take risks and enjoy life without the pesky nuisance of a 9-5, :) Should I ever return to "traditional" employment, I will certainly continue to view the world through the lens of "inspiration".

My synagogue got a new rabbi and it has really transformed the community in many wonderful ways.

I started my first serious, long distance relationship, fell in love with him, and then had my heart broken. It was the hardest thing I've ever gone through, and I'd like to say I'm a better, stronger person because of it, but I honestly don't know if it was a valuable experience at this point.

My wife started working with the local Jewish Federation. I am grateful for the extra income and inspired by her new connections to rekindle that spark inside myself that brought me to Judaism. I want to use that spark to light my own way into observance.

My birthright trip to Israel was the most significant experience I've had so far this year. It completely reshaped my thinking, my being, and everything in between. I am so grateful for the experiences I had on that trip, and am so happy I took the time to go. It has inspired me to eat cleaner, be more active, be more religious, change my major, and a multitude of other things.

I passed my Bachelors Degree. It's been a fight but I'm happy I made it. I started in the following masters program right after. I enjoy the new challenges ahead of me.

Maddie went to prom and on the day of her prom, I texted Jerry with gratitude. I felt no resentment, only gratitude, I had no expectations and realized how far I have come, how much I have grown. I am proud of myself, I am, some of the time, the woman I want to be.

Getting to a new place in my relationship with my husband -- helping him to see he can have significant relationships with others. Exploring the idea of polyamory....I feel relieved that I am no longer the be all and end all of his emotional needs.

H and I moved back to West Virginia. It was culture shock for sure. Part of me is grateful to be surrounded by family and relieved to not feel so lonely and I am hopeful for the future because I am going to school and there is a lot of possibility on the horizon but I am also very restless and frustrated with being in this town and all it entails. The lack of things to do, the lack of intellectual stimulation, the abysmal healthcare.

Less than a month after a big blow up with my son, we were able to go to Sea Base and have a blast together. I'm grateful and relieved that he values our relationship enough to struggle through it himself.

Our landlords sold the building we were living in and we had to move. Everything about how it went down was kind of shady. The new owners and their employees were rude and made it pretty clear we weren't welcome anymore. I do still resent how we were treated. We were very lucky to find a new place that we love. Although the rent is a lot higher, I'm grateful to be in such a nice neighborhood and live with a great guy.

I got my first car. It affected me because it helped me mature a little more and realize how important money really is. I am grateful.

I've done a lot of work with victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. My motivation to immerse myself into the field comes from an unfortunate history of direct experience. It's taken a long time for me to come to terms with the abuse I've endured as a young girl, but I was convinced that my awareness would never lead me back to being in that kind of dynamic again. I think once I was well on my way towards healing, I stopped believing it could happen again. So when my ex boyfriend raped me last year, it shattered my belief in myself and the world at large. It broke me. It catapulted me into a cave of denial and pain. I didn't tell anybody for a year. I was ashamed. I should've known all the warning signs. I should've known this. I should've known that. But a year later, almost to the date, and I've come a long way. I'm regrowing the ability to trust. And like with any kind of regrowth, it's painful. But I learned a lot more about myself--how I cope, hurt, and love. It added to my resilience and self-awareness. Though I'm still angry, I've learned to not be so inwardly.

I broke up with Michael whom I am deeply in love with...I did it because my fear monster took over and I ran away from good feeling as if I wasn't ready to go so deep again. I was afraid I would give up my individual Cyd again in key ways that I had only just accomplished in recognizing and welcoming in after divorce, and the lessons learned within myself. I still felt broken from J leaving our agreement of marriage and commitment. Upon this break up, with plenty of time to realize my folly by doing so, I learned even more deeply what I capable of: the ability to admit my weakness and truly apologize with no expectation of the others (in this case Michaels) reaction. I realized that I am capable of forgiving myself and allowing myself to be fallible. I realized that real healing and letting go can occur even over the deepest and most painful experiences in life. I realized a new potential I being able to relate and resonate with another person in an intimate and powerful way. The realizations changed me irrevocably. I am utterly grateful and humbled.

I have been diagnosed with cancer. Talk about a bomb dropping. I thought I had an ulcer - that was bad enough. But it didn't go away with usual treatment and so the doctor ordered more tests which resulted in discovery of the cancer and a radical hysterectomy. Grateful? In a way - yes. If I didn't have the awful stomach pain I would never have found the cancer until it was perhaps too late. Inspired? Not yet - but maybe that will come. I'm quickly reassessing what's important in life - and rapidly divesting myself of all the stressful projects that were causing the ulcer-like symptoms in the first place. So - yes, I guess it's a good thing. I am learning to let go of being in charge.

I would say a significant experience was when I spoke at my college graduation. I proved so much to myself by even applying and becoming a finalist in the process that the moment I was told I was selected I was in absolute disbelief. I am so grateful that I was able to have such a huge huge thing happen in my life. I wanted something, I worked for it, and now I have an unforgettable memory for the rest of my life. I gave myself a moment in my life that I can always be so proud of doing.

A really significant experience for me this past year was being a staff member on USY Poland/Israel Pilgrimage. I was really inspired by what my USYers were involved in and were active seeking in Judaism. They all seemed to get something out of the summer, and it really made me grateful to be a part of such a transformative summer for each of them.

Without question traveling to Europe to climb in the Alps was the most significant and impactful. I wanted to move to Europe. In the short time I was there I was free from depression, alcohol abuse, and overeating. It struck me that the cultural norms, systems, structure and available of the things that cause me trouble and self hatred in the United States did not eliminate, but did control and moderate, experiences where I am heavily prone to self destructive addiction. I am inspired, but skeptical that I can model my life here to be more like what I experienced there.

Getting engaged! Over the moon thrilled and excited!

I was diagnosed with a recurrence of cancer. It has changed my life.

I learned how to prepare eggplant. I've never bought eggplant! I am. . . pleased.

My father passed away. I believe I managed to balance being there for him (both in the day-to-day and emotional sense) while attending to my own needs, which required a certain level of self-honesty, self-knowledge and moment-to-moment attention to the tensions and yearnings that ran through me. Now, a month later, I feel at peace with how it went down. Sad, yes, but not regretful. Certainly not resentful. Maybe I even feel a touch of pride. He died a good death, knowing he was loved, in nurturing surroundings with minimal suffering. I was there at his side until the end. And now, that I'm tearing up as I write this, I realize how much that meant to me. Dad and I really worked at our relationship and he died knowing I loved him very much and I know he loved me. I was grateful for the ways in which his illness brought us together. And yes, it has inspired me to try to achieve similar ease and connection in some of my other fraught relationships.

I became engaged. I am grateful and relieved. I'm in love and no longer worried about being alone.

In the past year, I applied and interviewed for an internship in my hometown. I was denied from that internship, but the experience motivated me to apply for another internship that I ended up getting. I am relieved in a way that I was denied from the first option because I know that I would never have considered the second internship, which turned out to be a huge learning experience.

In April, I got fired from a job for the first time. It affected my self-esteem for sure, and it took a long time for me to get over it. It also led to me being unemployed for months, which also affected my self-esteem and self-worth.

Peg and I and her sister Edith cruised up the Danube from Budapest to Passau Germany. It was a great trip - we had a lovely time and even with the high river and the rain it was wonderful. I am very grateful and so glad we all were able to travel together.

Was recruited from my current job to a new job - wasn't looking, but I got it. My old company, HP, is now laying off 30,000 people - feeling like the universe was taking care of me.

Having my boyfriend break up with me while I was very far away was difficult, but I mourned it openly and the mourning allowed me to heal. I came out of it more confident and self-assured than I've felt in years. It gave me an overwhelming sense of compassion, love and generosity. I'm in a better place now than I've ever been and I learned the valuable lesson that stiving for emotional honesty in life is essential for happiness.

After our shul's Rabbi left, I was asked to take over as interim shilach tzibur, adding that+ giving a weekly d'rash to my regular job as ba'al korei. I was honoured by the trust in me shown by the members of the congregation.

A few things really, and the year isn't over yet. A. I went to Japan again, for three months. It was wonderful. I lived in a foreign country, where i could barely speak the language, with my fiance. She took good care of me and maybe it could be said that i took good care of her. We traveled to a couple places and took walks and saw statues. Nara was especially beautiful. Seeing the Daibutsu of Nara, and the Kannon in Nara was pretty heavy. Also i stood an arms length away from a picture of Boddhidharma painted by Dogen. It was really incredible. I feel endlessly lucky and grateful for that trip. Esperanza was supposed to fly to Japan too, but instead she broke up with both of us. That was pretty hard. I wouldn't say i'm resentful, but there were tinges of it; i was really looking forward to being with both of them. Just being. Of course i was looking forward to the sex too, but the harmony was the main attraction. B, or C, you choose: Amineh came home last month, and we promptly broke up. This was hard. It's still hard. When people ask how i'm doing i tell them it depends on the day, but it would be more honest to tell them it depends on the hour. Of course i feel like it's my fault, and to a large enough degree it is. I was a shitty fiance, i didn't clean hardly at all, and i didn't make it seem like i wanted her here. I just sort of balled up and hoped she'd pull me out of it once we got settled. I haven't done enough, and i didn't do enough. And to that extent i feel like a big bundle of flaws. But i also feel a bit betrayed. And a part of me is just waiting for signs or evidence of even more betrayal. I feel left behind and well, dumped. With school starting back up, and all the other factors making demands on my time, i don't have a lot of space to implode. I have dreams of abandonment and wake up without optimism. I eat too much ice cream.

In November last year I donated a kidney to my friend Kate. I heard today that she is now well enough to be pregnant! This is amazing news and after a much longer recover period than we both anticipated I am now wholly grateful and relieved that the donation has achieved the outcome Kate was longing for.

This year was so hard. Almost unbearable, at times. I was just a few months into my first post-graduate job, a co-worker began to stalk and sexually harass me. Despite working for a university that had abundant resources and training to properly handle the situation, I fell into a classic trap of victim-blaming and abandonment by the administration. After enduring months of extreme emotional and psychological stress-- much of which manifested in physical ailments-- I left my job. It's been hard to watch my stalker go on to win awards from women's groups on campus, to learn of his continued inexcusable actions against others, and to know that I did absolutely everything I could do and still lost. I'm better now. I have a job that makes me happy. I have good friends who make a great support system. I visited a doctor to help me deal with all the ramifications of this year. I am better and I feel stronger, but part of me feels broken, too. It's as if my faith in the world has been shattered in a major way. I try not to let this one horrible experience color my view of the world, but it's hard to be optimistic when I've seen how far people will go to protect themselves and alienate victims and survivors.

There have been SO MANY significant experiences in this past year. The biggest one is obviously the trying to make a family. An identity shift for me, months of failure, disappointment, sadness. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?

My best friend is going through something horrible which makes me defensive for her and very angry to say the least. We (she calls us group her chosen family :) are surrounding her and her kids with as much love, affection and security as possible. Whatever it takes. No question about that! We have been through a lifetime of good bad and mindblowingly awful together and our loyalties have never waivered. As bad a situation as it is it is a wonderful reminder of how strong of a support system we have, that we are not alone, and that unconditional love exists outside of birth and blood. THAT alone is amazing and hopeful. My heart is overflowing with love for her and the family we have chosen. Nothing will change that.

Went on a 11 day road trip with the family that went great. I learned a lot about the world and about my family. I'm looking forward to doing it again.

I had a baby! It has changed me in ways I did not see coming. I feel like my heart is just out there and can be damaged so much more easily. I feel the pain of bereft mothers where before it was just a sad thing that happened to someone else. I care much more about the state of the world, my country, my city, the environment. I'd say in general I just care more.

We moved away from friends and closer to family. It has been an incredible opportunity, and an incredible strain. I hope my wife can be happy again.

I resigned from my job with a big company in order to gain more flexibility and control with a small company and work for myself. I feel relieved and inspired to develop myself in the direction I want to go. Giddyup!

I moved to a new job. I am so relieved. I didn't realize how miserable I truly was with the old culture and how little I supported their values, until I moved to a new, supportive family. It is amazing what a difference it can make to be around people who appreciate you and support you. I'm especially lucky to have Barry as my team lead. He definitely sets the tone for a collaborative, logical team. My mom said I'm happier now and a nicer person for it. I'm glad I can share that happiness with my family, too.

I had sex for the first time last November. The event itself was pretty banal--I went on a first date with a friend of a friend at a bar near my house, and we ended up rather unexpectedly going back to my place and having sex. I didn't tell her that it was my first time; I was 22 and very self-conscious about it, so I wasn't going to divulge the information I was trying desperately to impress. I'm sure it showed, but she liked me enough to go on a few more dates with me. We dated for a couple months towards the end of the year, and the time was a great learning experience for me. I learned how to be comfortable being naked around someone else, how to navigate blanket-sharing with another person, and how not balancing sex and other activities can doom a relationship. I've had sex with a couple other partners since then, but I had the best chemistry with her, and for the few months that we did date, I felt content about my love life the first time in maybe five years. Not overjoyed, but content. The shift in mindset, though, forced me to think about other things in my life that I wasn't so content about: my job performance, my social life, and my dedication to writing. Coming out of the experience, I don't feel super different, but I do think a bit more realistically about my sex life's place in my overall happiness. It's not something that has to consume me or my thoughts all the time. And I'm thankful for that.

Oh goodness, so many significant experiences! I've completed one year in a brand new job in a brand new field, I've helped bring to a graceful end a 5yr-romance with a person whom I think the world of, and every day I vibrate with more intensity for a man that brings stillness, spirituality, poetry and unwavering care into my life. All of it is inspiring, what a year.

This past year, I was a volunteer for the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. I worked in a shelter for families and lived with six other volunteers. I learned so much more about myself and other people. I am grateful to have met and learned to love 6 strangers who are now like family to me. I am also grateful to grow in my personal and professional life. It was truly a transformation experience, which continued to challenge me to for wand meant more and more.

I moved back to Guatemala from DC. It has been a weird year of transition, figuring out life, goals, romantic partnership, job situation, etc. I'm grateful I'm here, alive, healthy, learning, and at the same time it has been painful, and hard, and it has sucked to learn deeper levels of letting go.

I discovered that I had a topical steroid addiction to the cortisone cream I was taking for ezcema on my eyes. I quit the steroid cream cold turkey and immediately stopped eating all sugar to deal with the underlining cause of my affliction, candida yeast. I have now been off sugar, including all refined & processed foods, and alcohol for about 5 months. I am feeling better. I have also lost close to 20 pounds. I am down to just 143 pounds.

I got a full time, grown up job this past Feb. It's the first time in my adult life I have been paid well for the work I am doing.

I finally got divorced this year. I am grateful, relieved, resentful and inspired. Mostly I am grateful that it is finally done and I didn't come out too badly financially. I do of course have a few resentments about it, mostly because he just refused to stop sleeping with other women. I am inspired in that it has propelled me into school and a level of self-sufficiency that I've never had before. I feel very confident that I am going to be more than all right. I'm going to kick ass!!!

One daughter moved away, far away, and the other has gotten a job with more hours. Both girls are growing up and i am redefining my role as a mother now that i have adult children. But unlike other moms, i will be involved heavily in the life of the second child because she has developmental disabilities. i am grateful for the growth she has had from her new job. i am grateful for all the people who have worked to bring jobs to people with disabilities. and i worry when i am gone, when i am no longer around to care for her, who will watch over her?

My experience as a solo teacher was life changing. I learned so much. It has opened my mind in a way I would have never thought children could. They inspire me and help me grow every single day.

I got a new job, which meant that my wife and I had to move from Louisiana to Washington, DC, and my wife had to stop working for a few months. I am very grateful for the opportunity to move my career forward. I am also very grateful that it will help my wife (who has been miserable in her job) forge a new path in her career. It is inspiring to be doing this together.

Joining the Peace Corps has been a very significant experience for me. It marked the first time I took control over my life and didn't allow others opinions to sway me. Its the first time I did something, knowing for sure that it was what I wanted to do I wanted to do. I am feeling very grateful for this because I feel like my confidence in myself is growing because of this.

I got divorced this year. I feel relieved, more comfortable, and recognizable to myself again. Although I had identified a weakened sense of self accompanying the marriage, I am surprised what a drastic difference divorce made. I feel as though I've come home to myself. Of course, my feelings changed dozens of times through the duration of the process. The toughest part- the grief, conflict, self-doubt, fear- all came before the actual decision to divorce. Ultimately, after all of that emotional turmoil, when the decision was made, I felt relief. When the divorce was actually final, I felt a sense of peace. This was a bit surprising to me, considering I had (and still have) to face reactions of family and friends, as well as the loss of some relationships, and eventually, the process of splitting up and breaking down the home we built together. However, the strength that has returned to me since I made the brave decision is enough to calm any fears about the fallout. And this furthers my sense of having returned to myself. I feel confident again. I'm living a life that reflects what I know to be true about myself. I feel realigned, empowered, and somehow also quite humbled. Getting married was an okay and understandable decision for me at the time. Getting divorced is the best decision I've ever made for myself.

In the past year, living in a new city and being snowed in a lot - I had to come to terms with a very strong feelings of lonliness, stress, and isolation. It made me feel resentful that I had to be here, longing for the social network I made in NY, feeling unhinged. Pushing myself to enjoy my life, to be social, to dress better, eat better, be happier - I threw indulgences at myself like a toddler who is given a ton of toys but isn't pacified. All this self inflicted pressure to enjoy living here brought me to the point when I finally said - it's ok that I don't enjoy living here. It's ok that I mentally recognize that I am blessed but still feel sad from time to time and alone. This drove me to stop trying to pursue new friendships (that only has me keeping score) and reduce connecting on social media (because that is false connection) and instead focus on my relationship with myself, my husband, and child. I'm not an expert in this, but just naming this issue has helped me immensely.

This year I started a new job. I'm grateful to transition to something more sustainable. I am hopeful this means I'll be able to spend more time on the things that matter to me. Reading, looking for a creative outlet, and spending time with people who have interesting things to say.

I have been seriously ill for the first time in my life and the situation has dragged on for months. This is a new experience for me and it has affected my attitudes about health, suffering, medicine, medical staffs, hospitals. My attitude about medical staffs and hospitals has improved dramatically as I experienced how hard they worked and how kind they were when dealing with my situation. I have learned that I can go on with my life and still do a number of things at a reduced or less intense level and still have the enjoyment of life.

Last year at this time I had just learned about my wife's affair. All of my answers from last year reflect this. This year has been marked by this experience. Her unwillingness to committ to our relationship and the demise of my marriage. It's been a very painful year. We are in the final stretch of ending things. Last year I had hoped to find myself in a better place when the answer to these questons came to my inbox. Unfortunately I'm still stuck in the midst of pain and hurt. Seeing my answers from last year though did serve as a big wake up call. Certainly it feels as if I've been sitting Shiva for the past year for my marriage. Hmm... who am I kidding. perhaps I'm just starting Shiva. The past year was all about me trying to save and work on my marriage. But it can't be saved when only one person wants it to be saved. So now she has declared that she does not want to be married to me (interestingly the woman she had her affair with just left her husband of 21 years). So for the experience of this past year - I am resentful. I have been so incredibly hurt. I am dealing with mourning for the end of my nuclear family and the hurt this will cause my kids. I'm mourning for the future and vision of my life that I envisioned. However I have also had tremendous growth. And now I must figure out how to pull myself together and move on. I just don't know how to do that.

Starting my own business. Feel like I'm now charged with a mission, so maybe the word is "purposeful" Or "accountable."

I was asked to work with the primary-school aged children in my church. I was taken aback, because I have been working with the choir and was happy to stay there. I was surprised and weirdly peaceful about this. I also feel inspired to do my best and trust that God will support me.

A person I thought was reasonably trustworthy was not at all, I feel it will be difficult to work with this person in the future. Additionally, my boss likes me alot more than I thought. I've discovered too, that I have a pretty uneventful life. Hmmm, I'm not sure how I feel about this>

A court order concerning my daughter was changed to where I could only have supervised visitation for no more than three hours a week at the rate of $20 an hour. It greatly reduced the time that I got to spend with my daughter and so I hired a lawyer and have spent thousands of dollars fighting it in an effort to have it changed. It has affected me in two ways. The first way is that it has made me despise my daughter's mother and made me realize how selfish and careless she is towards my relationship with my daughter. She does not think my daughter needs to have a relationship with me at all. The second way is that it has made me much more appreciative of the time that I do get to spend with my daughter and how precious it was, and fortunate I had been, to be able to spend more time with her and go and do whatever we wanted before the court order.

I made a very close friend. Someone who I though would be a lifelong friend. But now, after about a year we no longer speak. Something in both of us changed, and the connection was no longer there. I have no ill will towards him, and he has none towards me, but this experience showed me how different things, and people can be as time goes on.

I think one major experience I've had is the recurring theme with my sister and her family. They behave so badly, so inappropriately. I feel like they take advantage of my generosity, with an attitude of entitlement. And then a coworker of mine passed away. And the usual calls of condolences came, reminding us all to resolve problems between us, to be current and present with each other as possible, and even love more than we thought we could. But my family is so destructive, and there are no words that will change the situation and I can only keep a decent boundary. I'm not ready to end the relationship, but I"m also not ready to have a heart-to-heart as it's just not worth the heartache. So I remain unreconciled (in the way the evangelicals use the term) with them, with discord and distrust between us. And I see no path to peace or peacefulness. It is a cognitive dissonance that is hard to live with. I guess I am grateful to know the situation, grateful for relationships that are not disfunction. I am resigned, and therefore relieved of burden. But I'm also sad I don' have the close relationship I desire, so I resent their personal problems. I'm definitely inspired to ensure my child can build strong and healthy relationships.

I went with Michael to finish his registration at Scarlet Oaks. It was really special for a couple of reasons. He was excited to start school there, excited to start the welding program, and excited to have me excited about what he is doing. I'm really pleased to see how he is reacting to this change. It really tells me that this was the right move for him. A lot of us have preconceived ideas about what our kids might turn out to be one day...a doctor, lawyer, rabbi (God forbid), teacher. I don't think I had in mind that Michael would be a welder. It was easy to come to the idea but I wasn't sure I would ever be comfortable with it. Now I am. I know it is the right path for him. I think that is about the most we can ever expect from life, to be on the right path and know it. The worst comes from trying to live the wrong life, travel the wrong path, for all the wrong reasons. There usually isn't any happiness in that. I always said that the core of what I wanted for my children is that they be happy. This is a step along that way for Michael. I am grateful for this. Whenever I say מודים אנחנו לך, I always say it with extra intention. I think it is important to be thankful for the things we have and know that all we have is by the grace of God. Michael is at the top of the list of things for which I am thankful.

Becoming a BNI member has given me great experience. Became more organised. Yes

I got married! Biggest life experience since moving back to the East Coast. The process of planning a wedding was at times overwhelming, okay, really ensuring we could afford it was the most overwhelming. We learned a lot about saving money and how to prioritize our most desired wedding aspects. I love how my husband got really involved in the process inuding the numerous trips to the craft store. He even created one of our ceremony pieces and our cake topper. For the most part everything went smoothly. We had our hiccups but really those turned out to be some of the moments we still speak about. The day was perfect! The love and joy we felt from our family and friends is a feeling I will NEVER forget. We felt incredibly humble and grateful as we read through each and every one of our wedding cards...the night of our wedding. Not that I needed it, but to have the most important people in our lives be so incredibly overjoyed and supportive of my husband and I is amazing. No regrets.

My contract at work came to an end (for the second time in the same company) and wasn't renewed. At first I was disappointed and a little upset. It felt unsettling and I knew I would have to start over again. Furthermore, I was told it was nothing to do with my performance but was purely budget concerns. This didn't help reassure me, but put an even bigger question mark against what I'm doing / have been doing for this company for the last year. However, it kicked my ass into gear and I viewed it as an opportunity to explore new avenues and seek out new paths. I became aware of the progress I've made since moving to China, the network I've built up, the relationships I've developed - all of which were overwhelmingly positive. As a result, I felt like I was given the ammunition I needed to step out of my comfort zone and seek something new, the next step in my career. I'm on track to getting there....

Starting my masters back at usyd. I originally really wanted to move away but I think coming back was the best idea. I've enjoyed most classes and although I don't feel like I know exactly where the year will take me but it's alot less scary. Funnily enough what everyone told me was true... you may come into this degree with an idea but if you allow yourself to grow you'll find something completely different - I guess that's moving away from East Asia and rather looking at different concepts like terrorism and development

I've had 3 significant experiences really: - finding and finally fully understanding love - realizing my parents are really growing old and frail - having my health damaged by my work I'm grateful for all three of the experiences although admittedly they're not all as pleasant. It inspires me to embrace the Moment so much more.

In the past year I spent a few days on a Marae up north of New Zealand. I learnt more about my friends and myself during those few days. As well as connect to the land in New Zealand. Coming to realise i am tangata whenua

We paid a $50k deposit and are awaiting owning our first home later this year! Sale price of $800k!! I feel so grateful my parents have taught me how to live frugally in other areas of life. I am very excited to begin the process of achieving one of my dreams (owning a house, i.e. no mortgage). It also made me feel very scared regarding such a large mortgage for such a long term, and I feel disheartened we couldn't buy when Auckland property prices were more affordable, but I do believe that with a lot of situations you just need to deal with the worst if it happens, as there will always be things beyond your control. Trust yourself that you are making the best decision you know how at the time.

I was laid off from work. I was getting burned out from the job, so it was good that I was able to say I was laid off, rather than left the job. I had a wonderful 5 months off where I focused on personal improvements. Yes, I am grateful for this time. Probably the most significant experience was my return to Israel. It was the continuation of my experiences from when I was a teenager, 45 years ago.

I think this past year I have struggled, as always to accept the rift in my sibling relationship. I remember, repeat and work through over and over again and it frustrates those close to me but I think this process is helping me to accept things as they are, without judging myself.

I applied and was accepted to grad school. That one decision set off a series of chain reactions that completely changed the direction of my life and I feel very confident that this is the right way to be headed.

Last year, just before Rosh Hashanah, my dad passed away. I was looking at my responses from last year and they were short and angry and bitter. No other experience in my life so far has had that kind of tremendous impact on me. Losing a parent is one of the most disorienting things that can happen. I found that all at the same time, I was confused and had clarity. I had wanted to save money for a downpayment and right now, I'm typing from my own condo because i needed a place to nest. It feels amazing! I also got rid of those relationships in my life that were taking more out of me than giving, I have simply refused to spend time chasing people who do not want to invest in me. I miss my dad more than I ever thought I would but I think he's watching out for me and helping me from heaven.

My dance troupe went through a significant contraction in size and participation this year. It was mostly due to my decision to walk away from an annual festival gig that all my dancers really wanted to attend. I am resentful, relieved, and surprisingly inspired.

I experienced an amazing havdallah service, dancing around a bonfire at Isabella Freedman. It felt like such a moment of peace and contentment like I hadn't felt before. I felt like I was exactly in the right place at the right time, both in that moment and in my life in general. I tried to bring that feeling back with me.

I had a surprisingly major crash-out at this year's Tour de Cure. I ended up out of work for three weeks with a minor head injury (which felt much more major at the time) and surprisingly-reluctant-to-heal road rash. YES, I WAS WEARING A HELMET. It broke and has been replaced. I wasn't going more than about 15mph at the time, and while I knew I was going to crash, I expected it to be pretty minor. I don't remember hitting the ground -- only, some time later, being flat on my back with five EMTs and paramedics hovering over me. I'm glad it happened at a "supported event" where there were lots of people and medical personnel around. I'm glad I (and the event) have a "no helmet, no ride" policy. I'm glad my medical insurance covered a lot of the costs involved, and I had postponed some non-life-threatening expenses until after the Tour de Cure -- so my FSA was able to cover much of what remains. I'm PO'd that the ambulance company, after agreeing with the insurance company that what they got from them was sufficient, is trying to bill me for a very significant remainder. A friend asked to use my photos (wrecked helmet, visible head injury) to teach bicycle-mounted policemen about the importance of wearing a helmet. Of course! If I could crash this badly *with* a helmet, imagine what would have happened (or don't) if I *hadn't* been wearing one!

Two or my cousins were married this summer, one in Philadelphia and the other in LA. Getting to spend more time with my family always makes me grateful! Bringing Mike to meet the Waters clan in LA was wonderful and all the worries I had about him being grumpy or annoying were unwarranted. He was wonderful and we had a great time. So there was some relief, too.

My father going to the hospital for dialysis. For the first time in a long time I thought I was going to lose him. I'm still afraid.

A significant experience that has happened in the past year was the realization that I'm responsible for my own health and well-being. I knew this before, but it started sinking in more over the past year. I started making exercise a priority during my week and I can't believe how much of a difference it makes at the end of the really hard and long days. I'm still at my full-time job and that has been a constantly evolving adventure. In addition to the exercise, I also made a decision to cut back on my schedule and taking time to relax. I am not teaching twice a week, just once a week and thus far the experience has been positive. I hope to move into transitioning into a more simple schedule but we will see what the future holds. The change in my mind set has been refreshing. I know I push myself to my limits and this past year has been a challenge to get up and find the motivation. It seems just taking one day at a time will have to be the plan for now.

Getting laid off? And then finding a new job. Moving in with my Dad for the first time in my life. Buying a car! Finally had to succumb and be full blow adult with that one. All of it was stressful, but so far it's going well.

My father fell and almost died. I had been very disconnected from him and felt abandoned. I dropped everything to be with him and helped him through the worst. It became my goal to mend things and then his wife interfered and made it difficult for my siblings to stay involved in his care. I am grateful he is alive but I hate her and it bothers me how she treats him and us. He showed to me that love is blind. I have not known such hate and I am embarrassed and ashamed of myself.

I slept with a friend. Not for the first time...this has been a long standing affair. But I thought I was pregnant, and I freaked out, and we might not ever be friends again. I don't regret anything, though. If he couldn't even handle that, there is no place for him in my life.

My health. Oh, my health. I am grateful to generally be okay after countless doctor appointments and tests, but it is a process. I switched careers because of my chronic pain and depression that slowly came about during this past year. My family and friends have been nothing but supportive. Just recently a friend has helped me feel kick-started back into my journey of yoga and my healthy lifestyle. I am so grateful and inspired. I have such positive thoughts for my future at the moment- I hope that big changes are coming my way- I just know that I, myself, have to take steps to make them happen!

My son, my only son and only grandson to carry my father's last name was born on May 8, 2015. As with most major life events, I've gone through a number of emotions leading up to his birth, the day he was born, and now as I answer this question given a few months with him as a part of my life. Right now I feel an overwhelming sense of disappointment in my life. I would have loved to have been able to greet my son with much more than I am, today; maybe my business ventures would have succeeded...maybe I would have had been more "organized" at home...I KNOW I could have done "more" the first time I met Caleb.

The biggest event that's happen to me this year is that my parents have disowned me and I can't explain what a relief that is. After years of trying to live up to there expectations I have finally given up. I am 100 times more happier and self confident that I have been in a long time. So now my family is my husband and Charlie (my pup)

There are no specific expirences. I'm just grateful that I'm alive and healthy and have a great family. Everyone has to thank whoever is above us, even if your having a shi### day, just be thankful for the little things that surround you and take note of it.

I fell in love with a woman who I thought was just a friend for me. She had migrated to another country and has been gone for over a year already and have not seen each other for that time. However, we still keep in touch. And when she said she found someone, it was then I knew, she was the one.

My mother died. I am relieved. It's not what one's meant to say, but she had been suffering from what was clearly dementia for at least two years, getting steadily worse, although the psychiatrist etc refused to say more than 'mild cognitive impairment' until near the end - she fooled them with her middle class accent and good vocabulary and general pleasant demeanour, which hid the paranoia, extreme unpleasantness, total confusion, etc etc that everyone else suffered from her. She told me every day for a year that she wanted to be dead. So I think it was a relief for her as well as for me and my siblings. But of course it is significant that I am now the oldest surviving member of my family, that both my parents are dead, and that the relationship I had with my mother cannot any longer have any possibility of improvement.

My eldest daughter was diagnosed with anorexia and at the same time I have to take my ex-husband back to court to fight for child support. I was sad, afraid and overwhelmed for my daughter. For months I had seen her become increasingly sad and losing too much weight. Her father said that "I work with women who are anorexic and our daughter is nothing like them." It took months for me to finally coral her into seeing her pediatrician and having her agree with me that this was a serious condition. She's now being treated and has returned to college. I'm guardedly optimistic and hopeful for her future.

I have lived an entire year without any significant experiences. Nothing at all except the daily grind and the daily worry about the future.

This year has been full of significant experiences -- and several of them took place in the same month. I graduated from the Kennedy School, got offered a job on the Hillary campaign and got engaged -- all within a few weeks. I mostly felt - and still feel - excited about the future. I love that I'm suddenly un-stuck. Another incredible experience was my trip to Thailand. I've never been somewhere quite so different from the U.S. and I enjoyed every minute of the trip.

I played in a live combat-simulation with several thousand people. I didn't feel particularly effective, but others who were present said I was actually very good. It was strange to realize that I didn't recognize my own level of competence. I'm inspired to expand my skills and work even harder.

Christmas this last year was not fun. We visited family, and while my sisters claim to want to see the kids, mostly they were just irritated by them and wanted me to spend time with them (the sisters) without the little kids. This was a big conflict for me, and made me pretty resentful. I could not win in this situation. It made my husband pretty resentful, too, and he's already slightly uncomfortable with my family. Thanksgiving was better, his family is very welcoming and did not get ticked off because I spent time taking care of my kids.

Finally, getting in a master´s. Of course, I am grateful to my mentor and to the one that accepted me in his lab. Now I feel busy.

Visiting both my adult children and watching them navigate the world inspires me. I'm so grateful to be a mom.

I walked in on my LTR cheating on me one night. I have been essentially best friends with her for 10 years, and living together for 3, and then there it was. Immediately I kicked her out. My life has been very different from that point since. It's hurtful. It sucks. In retrospect, I knew we were in the process of breaking up. I just wish she'd respected me enough not to do that. I would say I'm relieved that the relationship is over since it had to come to that, but saddened at how it ended. It would've been nice to be friends. I don't harbor any hate towards her anymore though. I've been a dick myself in the past, and in the recent enough.

I think the experience of my first year as a therapist has been profoundly significant. It's been such a roller coaster ride of emotions and self-confidence. It's surreal to realize the effect and impact my words have on others lives.

Our new house and acreage has made us more grateful and thankful for all we have. Also, our daughters Jamie & Evelyn have had or will have a wedding . We are very happy for them.

I was headhunted to be employee #5 on a Silicon Valley-based start up as the only non-technical member of a dream team with peers where I was grateful to be dumbest in the room. The more I learned about what we're building, the more I came to realize why everything I'd learned in the past 25 years of working, no matter how random the experience, led to this project and that I was the only person for this job. I was grateful and in awe of the pattern of my life.

I passed the VCLS and Praxis II exams with flying colors, and I am starting a study program to take a second Praxis II. I'm in the running to actually achieve this goal of becoming a teacher for my "2nd act" career. I'm grateful, and relieved, and both apprehensive and eager. I know it won't be an easy job, but I will be a good teacher. Meanwhile, my age is driven home: I almost died. Twice. Once, I almost drowned (and a very nice kid made sure that didn't happen) and then I may have actually had a mini stroke. I certainly had some kind of "cerebral event" and also some kind of pseudo-anuerism in my left aortic artery.. i'm getting the terms wrong. All I know is, all those headaches? they were UNgood. My blood pressure is now controlled, medically, and I'm losing weight, and I'm going to be fine. But wow. Sobering. Apparently, I'm mortal.

My granddaughter Sarah, who died at the age of 2 in 2006, had a "boy friend," another 2 year old who was waiting for a liver and small bowel transplant. She was waiting for a liver transplant that never came; Vinnie received his and is now a thriving middle school student. His mom sent a picture of him to my daughter, Sarah's mom, making me realize what could have been. Vinnie's story continues; the book of Sarah's life is closed. It was a powerful reminder of the importance of organ and tissue donation; we show their photos whenever we speak for Life Sharing.

i re-met a friend from 55 years ago, in a new (including romantic) way. grateful, surprised, hopeful, restored, inspired about possibilities i didn't think existed for me in this life.

Losing my job at MPI was awful. I really loved working there. They decided to make my position a full time one, knowing I wouldn't be able to continue because I also teach part time (and wouldn't give that up). They gave me another position, with another boss who I didn't get along with. It was awful. Then I took another position which didn't work out. It just wasn't a good fit (though on paper it was). Finally I found a position that I absolutely adore. I am very happy here although it's a challenge learning the way things are done. I was depressed and anxious, initially, but now I am grateful and very happy.

My brother died. It rocked my world, devastated me and broke my heart. I am relieved as my brother is no longer in pain ...I am also changed by the event- reminded to Live in the NOW. reminded that you can not give help to those who wont accept it- who are not ready. It reminds me the be mindful of others- as we don't know what each person is struggling with.

We moved to Maryland! Don't tell our families, but I think it's been good for us. We have a lot more flexibility and a lot more options. I have a super deep bond with Jonah after being home with him for over a year. If we'd stayed in Chicago I would have kept working, and never would have known that I like being a stay at home mom!

My daughter was born. It was life changing. I am grateful, and inspired to try really really hard at life. I feel like I fail a lot. Our apartment is messy and we can't find a home we can afford to buy. But she means the world to me and I will always keep pushing myself really hard. I just wish I could meet my aspirations.

In the last year, I moved from Seattle to San Francisco. I did this for a number of reasons, but a significant one was that my girlfriend was in SF. It was a big change in both my personal life and my career. So far it's been amazing and fantastic! I'm incredibly excited about this new chapter, though I do miss many things about Seattle.

The most significant experience is the shift in my attitude. I am learning to accept things as they are, and take slow steps to change when I need to. There is no rush. All things happen in their own time. I can do nothing to alter it. This I finally accept. At this point, life is the journey, not the arrival.

After realizing that my marriage was over, I began to think and to process. To understand what wasn't working, and what never would have worked, despite all the communication in the world. I came to peace with that, as I assumed my husband told me he had long ago. And when he finally expressed guilt to me over what he had done, I told him that it didn't hurt as much anymore, because I was no longer in love with him. Whether it was through logic or self defense, I had fallen out of love, and felt I could never fall back in love with him. And he started crying. It was so entirely unexpected. So throughout this experience, I have felt relieved, but also confused. I found myself married to a person I don't understand and could never fully understand. While I could often predict his reactions, I could rarely predict the underlying thought process. And this exchange only drove that home. I will never really understand this person.

This past year has actually been fairly quiet. 2014 was full of huge life changes: new job, got married, and moved, all before the High Holidays last year. I suppose this year's significant experience would be my one year anniversary, or perhaps turning 30. Unfortunately, since starting my new job, my birthday has fallen during my work's busiest season, so a time of year I have typically enjoyed and celebrated has become fraught and preoccupied with work. I do not think that celebrating birthdays is something only children should do, all birthdays should be celebrated, but I have a very workaholic office and so feel pressured to work work work vs. actually take a moment and enjoy my birthday. This year at least I got out of the office at a decent time and went to dinner with my husband, but I spend the whole evening thinking about work. I would like to be able to step away from work for a day or two during the busy season to reflect on my turning another day older, but it is hard when you have the expectations of a small team and don't want to let anyone down, even if you have completed all your tasks and are not leaving anything behind in the office. Tomorrow is another day and the work will get done, but my coworkers tend to forget this during the busy season. Regarding my anniversary...I'm so happy and lucky to be married to my husband. He makes me happy every day. I am crazy about him and we took a few days this year to go on a vacation together to a place we had never been, the Outer Banks, and we had a great time exploring, eating, and relaxing. Even when our awesome shade tent was broken by the winds, we still had a good time. Makes me wish every day could be like that...but, alas, it can't be. So, I guess, my birthday made me feel resentful, because it isn't mine to enjoy anymore, and I need to figure out a way to reclaim it because as long as I am at this job, this will be an issue. My anniversary made me feel thrilled. I can't wait to celebrate more of them with my husband. And these seemingly "mundane" occurrences make me feel like I should work harder to have more significant experiences over the coming year!

This year I got an actual grown-up real-person job. Not a charitable teaching gig that is enforced by my being a PhD student in the department. No, a real job. I am officially a College Lecturer. I am officially Dr./Prof. Bad-Ass. I still can't believe it... and I haven't really 'inhabited' this role, but I love the fact that I am taken seriously as a colleague by my old professors, and that the world (if not myself) has a new view.

Julie died. Suddenly. Unexpectedly. I feel sorry. So much remorse and having missed so many opportunities to have been closer. And now she's gone. And I can't change anything. And I miss her so much. The world seems like it has a gaping hole in it without her here.

My daughter impressed me very significantly- she failed to get into the college she wanted that seemed like a shoo-in and then spent a year at another college, never complaining, working very hard but making an intelligent effort to enjoy what was available- and managing her transfer. The joy in her voice now as a sophomore at a new school is amazing. She did it all right- and got rewarded.

I completed my first year of my doctorate program and completed the toughest course - epidemiology. I am relieved but tired. I am trying to get inspired for getting through my program this year.

I am learning to live with my anxiety! I've driven over bridges, I've gone up steep escalators, I've gone places alone that I would not have done before. I still feel like I have a long way to go, but I have definitely made good progress. I'm really happy with myself for working on this, especially driving on bridges.

Well, my friend Victoria Whelan died this past Monday. Of course I'm sad. I'm mad -- this seems absurdly out of line and unfair. But something she said to me last week, when I was walking by her house and Pat stopped me to talk to her on the speaker phone -- I was complaining about how I have to walk the dog all the time, and she told me how much she envied me getting to walk like that. She was in the hospital at the time. So now when I'm out exercising and it's getting hard and I want to stop, I think, "Okay, I'm going to keep going for you, Victoria, because you can't." When I eat something delicious or I write something nice, I think about her, and about how lucky I am that I can still do these things. Also, when I find myself wasting time, same thing: Victoria has no more time. How dare you waste yours? It's very inspirational, in a depressing kind of way.

Daughter was born <3 March 25 2015, Maya. I am proud and grateful to take on this experience.

Definitely the most significant experience of the past year has been my pregnancy and the birth of my first child, Asher. It was a long journey to get pregnant and a relief when I finally did. It was also strange, surreal, and fun. Overall, I liked being pregnant, feeling Asher grow and move around. Sometimes I miss it.

The experience of leading (and leaving) my pulpit at Grand Junction was a great mix of all of the above named emotions, gratiude, relief, resentment, and inspiration. It was a necessary trial, I learned enormous amounts from being uncomfortable in a place that welcomed learning and improvement, confirmed very deeply that I do not want to be a solo pulpit rabbi, or be anywhere that demands I be their "everything" when they want someone else, and could not be happier to be serving more full-time for a Hillel that honors and nourishes the kind of creativity I want to bring. The arriving was powerful, and the arriving not there this year, is equally, relievingly powerful.

I can't think of a single experience that I would characterize as significant above all others... there were several that affected me - mostly in small ways, and I was at various times grateful, relieved, resentful, and inspired. Mostly, I'm grateful...

I developed a crippling case of sciatica, humbling me and making me stop my frantic life and take time to care for myself.

This past year, my little nephew was born. He's 4.5 months old now. He is so adorable and so special. It has been amazing having this new life in our family, and he brings us so much joy and hope in everything. It has also been really interesting seeing my brother and sister-in-law transition into parenthood. They had some bumps (as everyone does), but they are doing a good job and are really falling into their roles. Also this year, my Grandpa passed away. We knew it was coming, but it was still really hard, especially on my dad. Luckily, my grandmother has been recovering really well and is starting to really love her new life as an unattached, older woman in an assisted living facility. She has lots of freedom, and loves to spend time with family. Seeing her singing to my nephew in Yiddish was probably one of the most amazing things I've seen. There were a few other babied born in my family this year, so it was a really good year for really seeing and internalizing the "circle of life".

My personal affects that I left behind in the house I shared with my ex partner was returned to me. It was a psychological as well as a physical milestone in bringing closure to that relationship.

I turned forty years old this past year. It was great. When I turned thirty-nine the year prior, I took it very hard. I had come to the realization that I was not where I wanted to be personally, professionally, and in my relationships. I threw myself a party with lots of people and a bartender. I advanced in my career in many ways including being an oncology certified nurse, becoming a three on the clinical ladder, and have had multiple public speaking opportunities. I've made some great friends and feel stronger and more independent and confident in myself.

There were several big events in the last year. I think the biggest one was really getting my new job. That has really changed things around for me. I love work now I feel passionate but that also comes with its own stuff. When you are so attached to work and you don't feel like you have preformed as well, then it feels more like a personal failure than a professional one. I really struggle with oscillating between feeling like I am on the top of the world with this job and feeling low. And it takes seconds to make that shift. At the moment that I am writing this I just hit a down swing to that is why I am writing about it. But the position has really changed my life in DC.

Tim and I decided to go and live internationally. We've begun to apply to schools. I feel so excited to have such an incredible opportunity to even consider something like this.

Well I didn't too much this year except go to South Africa. It's actually pretty confusing to reflect on the past year because of the double summer situation. It's also hard to narrow down the entire semester to one or two experiences. Or to generalize the whole semester. It was absolutely incredible to be there and to really get to know the place. I learned so much about the country that I could not have learned in books. I feel very grateful to have gotten to go there and proud that I picked it. I'm happy that I handled that decision, which was a pretty big one, on my own. It gives me confidence looking toward this year that I will be able to make good decisions about where to take my life after graduation. I also definitely had my difficulties with the experience but I'm trying not to focus on those regrets because they really don't outweigh the beautiful experience that Cape Town study abroad was for me. It has made being back on campus weird and occasionally unenjoyable so I can end up resentful but I have been able to push through that a lot.

I lost my home and my dog in a house fire in January just a few days after New Year's Eve. I left the house for an hour an a half and came home to a smoke filled house. I lost nearly everything. Of everything I lost, I just wish I could have been there to save my faithful pup. The days and weeks after the fire left me feeling devastated. But between friends and family and even strangers, so many rallied together to help me rebuild slowly. I can't find the energy to go into much detail, as this is still a really painful thing to talk about, but I am grateful I wasn't harmed and that I had help and places to stay in the interim. The support I got when I felt completely helpless was something I will never forget. It serves as a reminder that there are still many good people in the world who will help someone when they need it. Besides this, some of my personal relationships shifted with people. Some ended, some became stronger. Some repaired. It's been a year of constant change, but I guess that's one of the few constants in life: change.

Alberto proposed!! I knew he was the man I wanted to marry and it was a matter of time, but it does not make it less special. I am excited to start my life with him as a Boquin. Gulp, yes i decided to take his name because it is really important to him.

I got a new job. Better money, set schedule, better benefits. Honestly, I kind of still can't believe it. I'm a college dropout and I have a job that, in theory, requires a degree to get an interview. I worried a bit that it was nepotism, but as it's gone on I feel... more comfortable at it and I'm getting better at it, I think.

I can't think of anything significant in this year except my resolve to move forward. The plan for the future is in place if still nebulous. To move forward and prepare for what comes after retirement.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer, which caused the death of my mother 19 years ago. I thought I was prepared for this experience, and in fact I half expected to be diagnosed with cancer sometime. The experience was much larger than anticipated and had huge effects on every aspect of my life: physical, emotional, cognitive, spiritual. I have not yet fully processed it al. I am grateful and relieved, but also acutely aware (again) of the fragility of life, and the miracle that we are here at all.

We started our farm and I became a small business owner. It has stressed me out to an unhealthy degree, which has made me realize that I need to deal with my anxiety to keep this business going.

I can think of 2 siginificant experiences that affected me deeply this year. The first one is the fact that I started going to Therapy every week. That changed my whole life for the better. For the first time in my life I started taking care of the monsters of my past. I never discussed my inner, most secret feelings with someone else and that changed my from the inside out. The second is the fact that I felt for someone for the first time. I finally felt what it's like to have feelings for someone else. I am grateful for the experience but at the same time it was painful and affected me in various ways. I am still recovering from it but I don't regret it.

My grandfather died in April. It was a sad day for me. I was grateful that he was not suffering anymore when he passed away. He had lost the will to live a while ago and I felt as if he was running on auto pilot. A lot of the joy from his life had been taken away from him over the years of his life. He was a great man who taught me a lot about how one can not speak many works say a great many things with your actions. I will miss him a great deal.

After close to a year of separation from Linda I met and got romantically involved with Karen. It was very confusing, difficult, exciting... to find myself in a dating situation and to go through the attraction phase and the being romantic and physical with another woman. I couldn't figure out how to kiss her. I was attracted and wanted to but had completely forgotten how to do that....I guess I never really knew how to do that! It was exciting and really sad at the same time.

Had my 3rd baby, and after a terrifying pregnancy the birth was great. Still working out issues from the time before, but I feel better.

Well, I suppose the significant experience is fairly recent - my diagnosis with depression. It happened very slowly - I didn't notice what had happened for a long time. I suppose that's how depression works: you don't think 'I'm depressed', you just think that's how the world is - that you are a worthless person and that everything is difficult. But once I realised what had happened - which was back in July - it got harder for a while. I realised how bad things were, and I found myself in some dark places. Luke made an appointment for me to see the doctor, who was lovely. Really reassuring and supportive. I have recently started on medication, which after a shaky start, seems to have helped a great deal. So, how was I affected? I am grateful, yes. Grateful that I have the support of a wonderful husband, loving friends, and access to a great doctor and medication through the NHS. Relieved, yes - I am starting to feel like myself again and that is a good feeling. I am resentful at what I've lost and what I allowed myself to lose sight of, I suppose - the things I stopped doing, the self-sabotage, the disconnection. Resentful may be the wrong word, as it's nobody's fault - 'regretful', maybe. And I am hopeful. Hopeful I can reclaim myself and move forward, counting my blessings and repaying my debts to the wonderful people who have supported me.

deciding to not go to israel, then deciding to stay in france... living in paris for three months... going back to new york... going back to france... living with annette and jean... meeting peter... living with elke... CELTA... picking back up on CAT PLANET... i feel after all of this, that i am exhausted... but inspired, and even more determined to follow my bliss and not be constrained to what i feel i "should" be doing to find it. i want to travel more, i want to learn more, i want to create more. and i want to want more. i want to learn to be calmer. i want to learn to release control more. yes. i am grateful. i am so grateful for this year.

The entire year trying to conceive has been very significant. It's effected my entire mood, a feeling of limbo, not knowing what to expect. Feeling like I'm falling behind in life and losing years. It completely had a hold over my every move, whether I knew it out not. The process of ivf was both amazing and difficult. It was our science experiment. I'm totally grateful we have the option here and it's free and we live in a day in age where there is technology to bring life into the world like this. And now we are just 7 weeks and we saw the heartbeat yesterday for the first time. I'm excited and thankful. I'm a also so scared. Will it stay? What if I exert myself too much? So many questions in my mind. And then the idea of hopefully being a mother next year! Holy shit! So yeah, that was the most significant thing.

This may not eventually prove to be very significant, but it was very intense and is recent enough to stand out in my mind from the rest of the year. On my return from five weeks in India, E met me at the airport and we drove together to a country house hotel in a beautiful Highland setting for a reunion night, only our second night together. We drank a glass of wine together on the terrace, went to our room, shared a bath, and made love. After dinner we went to bed. I was exhausted after a 25-hour journey and slept strangely and loudly. E couldn't sleep, so she asked me to play the Scarlatti sonatas again. At 12:30 I awoke. Scarlatti was still playing loudly, but the bed was empty: she was gone. I was seized by panic – the worst I can remember. I phoned her immediately; she was still on her way home. To my astonishment she answered, and pulled off the road to talk. I paced up and down the hotel car park, frantically pleading with her to return. She agreed, and I waited for her, calmer, gazing up at the night sky blazing with stars. We went back to bed, slept well, and in the morning talked for a long time. But nothing was the same. In the afternoon she sent me a text: "Sorry it didn't work out. See you around no doubt. xxxxE" Ten days later. We met today, and talked, and hugged, and kissed, and promised to write and try to understand one another and ourselves, and see what happens. 10Q asks: how did it affect me? Well, I'm glad in a way to have lived through it: it felt like the very worst thing that could have happened to me, but I survived it. If it's true that "whatever does not kill us makes us strong", I should be a great deal stronger. Also, I think I understand a little more how the history and assumptions that I brought to our relationship rang such strong warning bells for her. It's a very uncertain future – but then it always was. The difference is that I know that now.

My darling daughter made a fresh start in a brand new school and had an amazing beginning -- immediately made new friends, joined new groups, excelled in large classes which for the first time were grouped by ability. Took her quite a bit longer to warm up to idea of being classified and in program, but did show signs of improvement in developing therapeutic relationship with adult before she was considered sufficiently self-reliant to transition into the full mainstream program as a tuition student. Unfortunately, not long afterwards she stumbled with strep, then stomach issues, and did not return for the conclusion of the year. It was distressing - and a sobering reminder that as hard as she works, she has areas which need far more support than she appreciates. I felt that my enthusiasm was chastened -- and I can be thankful for her incredible strengths while needing to remain vigilant to her needs.

In the past year, it seems that there has been an increase in cruelty and murder around the world in the name of closely held beliefs and religion. It has been discouraging and indeed horrifying. I simply cannot wrap my head around the level of hopelessness and cruelty that can inspire human beings to commit such attrocities. At the same time, I remind myself that the world is filled with moments of grace and kindness. As my writing mentor said at our writing retreat this year, she keeps a saying on her desk so that she can see it at all times, "be kind, be kind, be kind."

My miscarriage. I am sad. Just deeply, and totally sad. My heart has never broken like this before.

After canceling my trip to India for him and waiting around in Oregon all fall for him, I broke up with my boyfriend and moved halfway across the country without him, rather than with him as planned. It was particularly dramatic because, although I had been quite miserable in the weeks leading up to the move, I couldn't bring myself to break up with him until the last minute - the day before the move. The car was packed. I had to unpack some of my stuff from it. I had to pick up my boyfriend's stuff from my room and put it in the car while he followed me around crying and pleading with me. He asked me several times if I was absolutely sure. Fortunately, I was, or I don't think I could have done it. Although this experience turned out for the best, it still scares me because it could have been so bad, so much worse, if he had come with me. I can't believe I let myself get so stuck in a situation that was so inimical to my being. He wasn't a good fit for me at all. The fact that I let the situation develop like that in the first place still frightens me. That said, the feeling of relief and freedom when I reached my new city was so profound. Every day for at least two months, I woke up extraordinarily grateful for my life - grateful to be alive, grateful to be able to do whatever I wanted to do without having to consult anybody else, grateful to have my own life, grateful to be on my own. I found myself thanking God fervently even though I wasn't so sure about God. I think this experience helped me grow and be myself. It also helped me realize how just how much I value my personal freedom and need to be with someone who complements that side of my personality.

I moved jobs. Ultimately I am grateful as I believe I am at a healthier organization in which I can find a better life/work balance. Yet I do question my need to leave my last job. I have a restless spirit that tends to think everything will be better at the next thing, next org, next person, instead of appreciating and celebrating what I have

My son growing up. I know it's not 1 experience, but a continual process, but it is a huge change that continues to change everything. Learning to walk, starting to talk, he's really becoming his own little person now. There are a few things I miss about him being a baby, but mostly I'm excited to see who he becomes.

I was diagnosed with premenstrual exasperation of PTSD. I'm relieved because I wasn't just going crazy, sad that the war keeps finding new ways to fuck with my head, and hopeful that one day I can control it and not be out of commission for two weeks a month.

In December, I drove out to LA with the intention of living there for the winter. After I was out there for a week, I received a call that my mom was diagnosed with cancer - which turned out to be in Stage IV. I flew to Texas and lived with my parents from January through early June, when I returned home to Chicago. There is such a huge range of emotions that accompany this experience. And while fear, sadness, anxiety and a little bit of anger have been some of those emotions, mostly I feel grateful and inspired. Grateful - that I have such a loving family. I have spent way too much time feeling annoyed by them - but the truth is I am sooooo lucky that we all love each other so much. I feel grateful beyond measure that somehow I was partnered in this world with my mom as my mom. She is the most amazing, brave, kind, funny, beautiful woman I know. I feel grateful to have the type of intense appreciation that comes when you risk losing someone - and then time to express that appreciation. I feel grateful for the huge amount of support from my friends in Chicago. I have had a couple of friends disappear during this time as well - for whatever reason - and I am grateful for them too, as it has made me realize I need to look inside for strength and happiness. And while it is okay to lean on others - and good to at points in time as well - ultimately, I am responsible for my emotional well being. I am soooo inspired by my mom. She remains positive, with humor, cares about her appearance and cares about those she loves. I am in awe of her, and I feel best about myself when I am loving her and when I am trying to be like her.

Went through major work transition. Was skeptical, but all turned out OK.

My Dad died last October. The world doesn't really look right any more. My sister, mom and I forgot to eat for a while, didn't really know what was happening for a while. The world is actually a different color now I think. Sometimes less bright, other times far too bright. Since then, I've figured out how to keep moving forward, but it's a strange combination of blocking how sad I feel about it in order to keep heading forward, and feeling so sad that the world just doesn't make any sense at all. Over time I imagine it will get easier to be happy but it's still very hard right now.

My father died. I can't list all of the emotions this has released, but I can say that his passing has made me even more grateful for my new role as mother to my son (he's 15 months old). The strange convergence of becoming a parent right before losing one of my own parents has made me...what? Wiser? Not exactly. Aware of every minute of every day? Yeah. That's it. I am much more aware of time passing and the importance of just being with the people I love as it does.

I joined Teach for America and moved cross county for the second time this past year. It was a crazy choice deciding to move my entire family across country again, but I knew in my gut it was the right thing to do. I am so grateful for the opportunity. I love my job despite its challenges. It is hard work and has definitely pushed me to my brink many times, however, it is rewarding in so many ways and my life has become a complete set of "flow time."

Getting laid off from my job (while in the process of divorcing, becoming single co-parent, and selling my house) was awful. So traumatic and completely unjust. However, the job I lost was horrible, and the experience prompted me to rethink my professional goals. I made a course correction that is just now starting to pay off, which has been a huge relief.

My Aunt passing away.

There are many, but I think the most significant experience is actually one I barely notice: moving in to a house with Laura, my best friend (and another roommate). It has been such a breeze to live with Laura. Part of me feels it fleeting since I know at some point it will end. What will the next steps look like? It will be like leaving family all over again.

The greatest experience for me was that I got married to the love of my life after dating her for five year. It was a surreal experience, and I had never felt so happy and content.

I moved out from Jesse's. Thank God. It made me realize who's really there for me and how much I love my family and how great John and Jeff were and are. And it has made me appreciate Justin so much more for his sweetness. I feel like I'm just bouncing back and I can't believe how bad things were, how much I put up with , especially since I have been through so much already. I should have known, I should have gotten out earlier. And now I am 27 and have to fend for myself. It's jarring, but I am glad that I have these people in my life to help me through it.

I think the most significant thing that has occurred this year is finding a strong, prophetic leadership voice in my work. It makes me angrier than I have been in the past, and encourages me to take risks with things and opinions that I wouldn't have before. It also has made me feel so strong, and loved and excited about life. It makes me feel like I am getting closer to the professional I want to be.

Having an adult bat mitzvah seemed like it was a turning point for me last year. It seemed to open up opportunities on many levels. After two years of studying and classes, over the most trying two years of life, it gave me something positive to focus on. The rountine of study was a great distraction from my grief and actually helped me to process some of the grief. Being able to share this process with my husband made it more special and cemented our relationship even further. Standing up before family, friends and congregation and voicing my journey and my prayers was meaningful and empowering. It opened my soul to the seemingly impossible. Five years ago I could have never imaged being able to chant Hewbrew prayers before the congregation or to be able to survive the lost of my beloved 16 year old son. By some unseen, unknown force I blossomed that day on the bima to a strong, confident, capable and an alive Jewish woman.

Learning how to build a robot that communicate with squirrels! Grateful and the mind goes to new places!

The birth of my great grand daughter. It has brought me to a different place, spiritually. She was truly a miracle baby and my grand daughter was seriously ill because of the pregnancy. I have a much deeper appreciation of my belief in everything as it relates to the Universe and to God.

A reporter and her cameraman were gunned down while they were conducting a live interview. This incident was televised "Live" because the shooter was filming his actions. I have become so aware of how sickening the whole culture of guns and cameras are all about us, here in the states. It is crazy that after so many shootings of innocent people, children, this nation is still under the thumb of the NRA. It is basically insanity, that our government chooses not to protect their people, the citizens. If guns and cameras are everywhere, I am saddened to say that what we are now viewing is mankind at his worst. Due to the recent events of police brutality and black men dying, and it all being caught on camera, you would think that the nation would become one mind of helping each other, working together, getting rid of so many guns.

Adam coming home. It was depressing. I'm still really hurt. I care about him very deeply, and I really enjoyed having him in my life and being in his. Other than Dave, he was my best friend. Really they were the only two friends I had. But then I suppose he was not my friend since I meant nothing to him and my loss meant less than nothing. I wish I could simply hope he was happy and would come around some day and miss me, but I cannot help but to feel as if I must never have actually known him and there never was an Adam. My loneliness is overwhelming at times.

On October 14 our son, Camden John, was born. He was 2 months early. Like the doctors had predicted, his lungs were not developed enough to survive and we only got 45 precious minutes with him. He looked perfect! He was beautiful. And even his short life he touched so many people. I am so grateful we got to meet him alive. It was hard to say goodbye so soon but we are thankful we will have eternity with him. For us we know it is only a temporary separation and we will know him fully in eternity! Just a few months after losing Camden I found out I was pregnant again. This time with a little girl! She is due in just a few short weeks. Due the exact same week that Camden was born. God is good!

Several events occurred over the last 12 months....(2 of my sisters each had a crisis and needed me at a very personal level) but probably the most significant event has been processing my teenage son's move 650 miles a way to live with his Dad. He moved in July and has been home once since. My kids have lived with their Dad since 2009 about an hour away during the school week to go to a prestigious private school but 650 miles is much different that 50 miles. It is a little over a 10 hour drive and there are no direct flights close to the city where they moved. I have been angry with his Dad for choosing to move at this point in his son's life; taking him away from close proximity to his Mother, friends and family. It is something I have had to put aside but its still there and comes up here and there. My son made the choice to move and it was driven by sports but also in a effort to please his Dad and not anger his Dad (in my opinion). I am not angry at my son but angry that my ex-husband put my son in the position to have to choose where to live. I'm still processing but find myself having difficulty concentrating and focusing...tending to medicate with Netflix and chocolate!!! There is always hope that my son will come back.

Decided, with my partner, to have kids. Totally scared, since we are both self employed and not making a ton of money, but good to have forward pressure on my life. I feel like we will make it work out somehow, and that we have enough support networks that we won't fail as bad as we could if we didn't.

I've had tremendous crisis of confidence at work. I've struggled in a job that I used to excel at and its caused me to question if it was ever my ability or if it was circumstances that made me successful. I think a large part of it is how much I don't enjoy it anymore. Odd, because I'm compensated well, I have pretty much unlimited freedom. Theoretically, I can come and go as I please, wear what I want, etc. I've now put myself in a position of expressing my dissatisfaction and set myself up for having to leave.

I got a new job. Overall, it's been a good move. I love the new location, I make a little more money, and the people I work among are relatively pleasant. I did a career 180 a few years back and it's been slowing going getting back to where I feel like I "should" be, in terms of money, job level, etc. It's a means to an end at this point (aiming towards more "satisfying" work), but I'm also trying to enjoy the journey so that the years don't just pass me by.

I broke up with my boyfriend of almost 7 years. I have learned that he cheated on me and I have decided to break it off. We did try to work it out but some things are just harder to gain like trust especially if you do not see each other everyday. We live 8,207 miles away from each other. I am relieved to get out of that relationship. It was not a healthy one anyway. Because of that I met my current boyfriend who is in everyway perfect. I guess life works like that sometimes.

On Tuesday after volunteering at the library, I lifted my bike onto my shoulder and started descending the dark stairs to my apartment. Foot missed a step, then the only thoughts in my head were "oh no" and "I hope I don't break anything / die." I had a few seconds to think these things while instinctively trying to keep my body as limp as possible until I found myself at the bottom of the narrow stairwell, crumpled with the bike. I was facing the direction I'd come, bike under and over me, backpack full of Safeway groceries double strapped and weighing me down like an overturned turtle. I tried to move, couldn't - the pain was too much, and I was still trying to catch my breath. Neighbor Luke opened his door a second after--warm yellow light and music streaming from inside--and looked down at the wreckage on his step. Recognition of the situation and my identity dawned on his face, and he started the questions--are you okay, did you break anything, did you break anything--I lifted a hand in lieu of responding, still out of breath. Would you like a glass of wine, he asked. Or two. I laughed, grimaced, and inquired about how his evening was faring. Better than yours (or something like that), he said, stepping over my back wheel onto the steps to proffer a hand. We extracted my body from the heap, and I noted with relief that the avocado I'd just purchased had the sense to escape my backpack and rest upon a pair of front wheel spokes. Luke had gathered my cell phone, work badge and keys that had fallen on the ground and we tried to open the laundry room door. My bike was lodged tight against it so the lock mechanism needed an assisting pull to function. Luke then spent the next half hour or so propping up my bike, searching for tools and trying to replace my wheels with his as a temporary solution (I protested, but he said he had nothing else to do since his girlfriend was trying to work inside). My back wheel was bent out of shape; the front slightly less than true. I washed the blood from my third left knuckle, changed into shorts and flip flops, and texted Hayden to replace the light bulb at the bottom of the steps. He showed up promptly with a chair and equipment, and soon after screwing in the new bulb he made a sound of surprise: the light illuminated silvery snail trails on the stair steps, previously unnoticed. I stripped off the old fender Bob from Bob's Bikes had given me and relinquished my kickstand, sick of Luke scoffing at it. His wheel ultimately didn't fit with my frame, and I was quite relieved--didn't want to have to deal with him retrieving his tires later, and I also kind of wanted someone else to see how badly the wheels had been bent. As thanks for the rescue efforts, I cut up some moon cake I'd bought with Rose in the ID for the Autumn Moon festival and shared it, then gave Luke an additional bag containing slices of red bean, lotus, and mung bean moon cake. Hayden joked about brewing breakfast cereal moonshine in the basement of the other building, and we laughed. I took a gloriously refreshing shower and went to bed that night with an ice pack on my knee. Bruises started blooming the next day and I recorded their locations as if I were working back at Dad's office--bruises on left knee, left shin, left hip, left lateral ribs, upper right posterior arm, minor lacerations on right third knuckle and bridge of nose. Better the bike than me, I thought--and good thing I was still wearing my helmet. I was grateful for Luke--incredibly lucky he'd been there to help untangle me--otherwise I would've had to wait for a resident doing her laundry. The fall and near serious injury inundated me with a renewed appreciation for life, meaningful interactions with friends and loved ones, and enjoying each moment--because it could all be taken away some evening on a Tuesday.

My son became clean and sober. I'm grateful to God for this blessing, and pray my son can stay this way.

I was in a serious car accident in 2014 which has left to heal a broken neck along with herniated back discs. I have been off work since September 4. This has been a very long and painful experience. I hate to say I am resentful, however, my life has been full of constant crisis and I just feel like what is the purpose. When do I get to have fun in my life. I shouldn't complain because I truly found the love of my live. My husband has been there every step of the way with my during my accident and every small crisis since. I am truly blessed. Yet, I can't help but feel that I have earned some sort of reward. An opportunity to share my life experiences to inspire others, help them know that they can get through anything in life.

Getting engaged brings on a million different emotions. Because my mom is dealing with a lot of medical issues it was hard to tell her. I didn't want to seem supportive of her needs at the time but I was all excited. Since getting engaged in January, I've run through the list of emotions, anger, frustration, happiness, and resentment. --Anger because my best friend and maid of honor kept telling me that I would "find a better one" if we ended our engagement. I get where she is coming from after all, we were arguing quite a bit in the beginning. he wanted a long long engagement and I wanted something more reasonable. --Frustration because my fiancee would tell me one thing and then come back and say something totally different. I'm a type-A person and need to be organized and in control. He, well he is not and would rather fly by the seat of his pants. I still want to scream at him sometimes to MAKE UP HIS FRIGGEN MIND. --Happiness because of course I am happy to be moving forward with the one person that through everything I can't seem to shake. Or it should be he can't seem to shake me. We just can't shake each other, we'll go with that. --Resentment because I'm trying to figure out a budget and of course as everyone knows weddings are expense. Did you realize that traditional small wedding costs as much as a Ford Focus. A FORD FOCUS. And then you have decisions, who to cut from the list? what to cut from your day? what will it look like on a shoe string budget? should you take out a loan? But the question you forget to ask and I'm finally asking it WHAT DOES IT MATTER? I think the thing scaring me the most when I look back, there's a lot of negativity around getting married. The less I think about it the more I enjoy my time with my fiancee. I'd rather go back to that... Only if he realized that would be better, to get this whole show over so we could be happy and normal again. 2017 can't come quick enough. Honestly I'm not sure we'll make it, and sometimes I wonder if he's hoping for that.

My marriage survived the biggest trauma a marriage can face. I feel hopeful and impressed how much more flexible, faithful, and forgiving I am when I lean on God.

I submitted my thesis only a few weeks ago. It's a huge moment and one I've been working towards directly for the past 3 years and sort of indirectly for most of my life. It felt really good and I'm really proud of myself. But at the moment, just a few weeks after submitting, I feel a kind of hole in my life because it's done. So at the moment I feel kind of adrift. I know what comes next - job, research, other life stuff - but I miss my thesis. I really enjoyed working on it and feeling like I had that big goal to aspire to, but now it's over. I'm really happy I did it; I feel so proud of myself and so relieved, but I'm still coping with it being over.

I don't think that there has been one significant event that has made me step back and say 'wow' or give me the motivation to reasses what I'm doing. Instead I believe that this year as a whole has been just what I needed to grow in myself and give me what I need.

Attended a Women On The Frontlines Conference in March that changed my spiritual (walk) life for the better. Very grateful. On a journey to know Jesus better and how to give more of my life & service to HIM. Yes, Inspired.

Mom passed away. Grateful for her life, her love, her service to others. Her. Glad she is not in pain any more.

The most significant of things has happened since last year. I have met, fallen in love with, and got engaged to the man I'm going to marry. I can't quite believe it, certainly wouldn't have bet on it at all, certainly in my state of slightly sad singleness this time last year. Anthony has really turned my life upside-down, and just feels so right. I feel immensely grateful, lucky, in love, and often too lucky - as if surely it's high time for something terrible to happen to us, it just feels so good...?! We're terribly young for it, but the family have come round to it, and friends are following, and this time next year we'll be married. I'm more excited than I can say, and can't believe that I've been lucky enough to find the love of my life, so why not hold on tight?

I moved the answer about getting married to the third day, about a milestone in my family. It's hard to think about other significant experiences this year! When I read my answers from last year, I realize that I was very clear that I would be leaving my job before the Holidays came again - which I didn't. In some ways it was inertia, but along the way I did make choices to stay. And the year has been very good, particularly in terms of getting to work with two new staff members who I really enjoy. There's a small part of me that feels disappointed that I didn't follow that plan, or maybe just surprised that I had felt so clear at some point. I am less clear now.

I was engaged in and completed a terribly draining custody battle with my ex-partner. It was a terrible year that begin with begin denied access to a local Montessori for my son when my ex blocked it in court to getting new lawyer and beginning a lengthy process of meeting with a home evaluator, having to stop counseling for my son secondary to coaching, 15 Thousand dollars in legal fees, and much anguish over my son's and my future. I am saddened that my ex could not do anything but battle and the I am still in a place with her that we cannot speak easily- This year, however, I did discover that some people simply cannot resolve these problems without pain an suffering and anger- I wish it could be different - but I have learned that sometimes you just have to move forward with the best intentions and hope others will do the same

When my husband recovered from his back surgeries last year, we chose to buy a house. After months of searching, we found something very special and are looking forward to closing in a couple of months, so we can finally make our home.

There were a lot of significant experiences this year. I left Australia, I moved to Boston, I survived my first "real" winter, I let myself feel lonely, I started new, I started taking my health seriously, I sort of quit/got fired, I traveled with no purpose and I had to figure out what was next (I still don't know and am currently still weathering that journey). If I had to pick the most significant experience it would be feeling lonely and becoming okay with that emotion. One year ago I would have hated being stuck in a room by myself for days on end, and now - although I still find it challenging at times and don't necessarily prefer it - I am okay with it. Sometimes I do actually prefer it. Maybe I'm growing up or maybe I'm just getting boring. Either way, it was definitely something I needed to do.

Honestly I can't remember the past year. I had a horrible class with Rob that sent me spiraling into self-doubt around my art. I've never been closer to an "I give up" in my life. The current stress of the sick (and dead) cats, the house sell, Angeline leaving me high and dry, the ex husband's new BABY and the backslide in healing, and my Mom's cancer diagnosis is a heavy, heavy burden. I'm answering this question mostly in the hopes that when I read it a year from now I can see how much things have changed and how deep my rock bottom was.

After 30 years of marriage, I separated from my husband. It has taken a long time to finally accept the fact that living separately is better for each of us. I am grateful that there was little drama and that we are able to discuss things in a mature, civil manner. I am especially grateful that by the grace of God I was able to find caring people to provide me with respite during this time and in turn, be able to do for them in their time of need. Yes, relieved and more rested now. Trying to avoid thoughts of resentment choosing to stay focused on present, future and the many blessings I do possess. Inspired to ask for help when I feel overwhelmed as the answers and solutions do miraculously occur.

In the past year I had my first run-in with the Rabbinate and found out that I have to go through a "confirmation process" to fix my status - to ensure that there can be no doubt of my Jewishness. In the beginning it nearly killed me. I would go to the program's classes, and just come home and weep uncontrollably. It's brought up the biggest mix of emotions for me, and it still continues to - probably for the rest of my life it will. At first (and still to some point) there was the most immense amount of resentment. To sit in front of Orthodox rabbis that represent the State of Israel (both Rabbi. Y and the Beit Din at my first official meeting) and to have them write down on my official file that I am already Jewish, but still have to go through the process is beyond bizarre. It feels as though I am stuck in some Wes Anderson film or something - where all the answers are in plain sight, however the protagonist must still go through some existentialist journey in order to carry on some quirky plot that has been written for him. After a few months, my resentment, anger, and misery started to melt away into feelings of peace. In the midst of all the pain and confusion, I have been lucky to meet some very beautiful souls whom are also on this confusing journey. Am I grateful, relieved, or inspired? Time will tell. However, I can say that I think I am finally starting to find my footing, and I have fallen in love with the learning. Having already been brought up and raised in the Orthodox community (all part of why this stings so sharply to be have my identity questioned), I am familiar with so much of the material already, but I'm finding that there are many gaps in my knowledge... Certainly I know WHAT I am supposed to do, but do I know the basis of the law behind it? Not always, and I am growing quite hooked to collecting and shelving as much knowledge I can get my hands on - like a sponge, as it feels to me. I will say that I am relieved I am already this far in the process, however I will only be truly relieved when I go to the mikveh, and "dunk" without a blessing. Inspired... I am, in some ways. I left the religious world after a bad interaction with a religious friend who hurt me so badly, that it shook me to the core and made me question my community. I think that the learning and new community that I am finding is inspiring me to come back to halacha on my own terms. New terms, certainly that which is laid out by halacha, but now which is dictated by someone who wishes to abuse me as before. We'll see where this all leads as it is still a work in progress. As of writing this (September 19th, 2015) I am about five months in with potentially up to five more months to go.

I moved from Los Angeles to Naples Florida. It has so far been the best decision I have ever made. I'm happy and healthy and totally excited about life. I love my job and I love being near mom and dad. Naples is like paradise.

This year, I started a new job, which has been transformative. For my psyche, I feel fufilled, proud and valued. For my self-worth, as I accomplished a lot, alreayd in 6 months. And, to feel like my work, although it's still work, has meaning.

the loss of two close relatives...two of my aunts died during this past summer. It was a sad reminder that my parents - and other family members - aren't getting any younger. It also reminded me of my own mortality.

My son was hospitalized twice for depression and anxiety. It has beaten and drained us all. We are floundering and struggling and I don't know how or even if we can recover and move forward.

I can't think of one particular experience. Oh..I got married. it made me feel inspired

I got into graduate school, which uprooted my entire life and landed me on the other side of the country. Uprooted sounds harsh. I like it here. Granted it's only been two months but I feel comfortable here. I'm not itching to go back to New York or anywhere else. I'm happy, consistently and genuinely.

My 15yo daughter decided within 3 days to switch to a completely independent high school program. I am excited for her, but it freaked me out for her to be suddenly on her own, taking buses around the county, all day every day! I realized that I'd been counting on her being safely locked away in school for a few more years. All of a sudden, she's taking off into a world of her own creation. And she's ready for it. I trust her, but it took me completely by surprise, and I'm still adjusting to the change. She is totally blossoming, doing a thousand things on her own, and I'm totally inspired by her incredible growth.

Getting bedbugs and lice from my now ex-bf. Nothing short of a nightmare. Every last thing in the house needed repeated washing and either exterminating or killing with Rubbing alcohol. Changing linems,and all clothes daily, never wear I ng same thing wit h out laundering or killimg in dryer. Burned out dryer took a month to get it fixed on top of that having worst lice infection ever. As of now is at least 5 mos old. Bedbugs easier to fix, but more of a pain, than the lice. Got some kind of infection in my privates, too. All from one hoarder, who also had zero commom sense, and just like his place, ignored signs on his body thst he had sonething. who gave me more tsouris than all the men I've dated in last 14 years combined. And no compassion. Got kicked outvof eork and all he colud say is 'bummer.' ¥¥¥Every night for 3+ months o slept with the lights on. Every day since April, have had this terrible itch, and every day spent at least 2-3 hours trying to treat, going to laundromat, extra wash at home, not slept with pillow since mid April. everything is still in plastic, containers or bags. Even had to go to doc on R.H. but did write check before holiday began. Got new prescription and so far, it may be gelping, is just too soon to tell. That's how it affected me. Plus now no time for a b y thing or one. Less than 6 hr sleep most nights. And shying away from more online dating. More alone than ever as no time to maintain friendship s either. No grateful nor happy. Relieved the bugs are mostly behind us, bedbugs gone almost 2 mos. Now just the lice. Not resentful wither. Just being in moment and dealing. Do want financial compensation when all done. Long term not sure how will affect me except that am far more hesitant to want to touch anyone fearing they will give me another 'gift' I don't ever want again. Can this experience inspire me? Hmmm, good question. Maybe to see that what I want in a man is again needing revision. Cleanliness next to godliness. Amen.

'Dumping' a friend of 15 years. I immediatley felt relieved yet I have VERY few friends and so I felt sad and a little frightened...I still feel scared that I am becoming lonlier and more alone as years go by. But I think it's true that if you can't gain anything positive from a friend and they show you that you're not important to them either you are possibly better off without them.

This year has been a blur of everyday experiences, without any major moments. I was settling into being married and into my new responsibilities at work. After the big changes of the previous years (new jobs, new city, marriage), it was nice to have a relatively stable year.

I'm a teacher. For the first time in almost 35 years I didn't work this summer. Even though it meant less money toward retirement, I was grateful because it meant more time to visit with my almost 90 year old father who lives 3 hours away.

I got married, grew my family and began to redefine myself professionally. I'm feeling grateful, excited and anxious.

My older son Zachary Benator applied to colleges and for various scholarships, graduated from high school, won the biggest band student award, won several scholarships, was hired as the high school marching band percussion teacher, moved into the dorms at and is attending GSU. I am amazed by and proud of his sccomplishments, initiative and hard work. He is a wonderful young man with a kind and loving heart, and he inspires me and awes me beyond words. He has faced every challenge he has faced with such courage. I love him so much.

One significant that happened was Jenn losing the babies. It was so very hard for everyone in the family, probably Wayne most of all. I'll never forget the phone call from my dad waking me up from the nap in Theo's room during Christmas break, his voice was haunting. It brought reflection for all of us. Probably the biggest way it affected me, though, was watching what it did to Wayne. After a few months of grieving, he and Jenn chose happiness. He quit his big job and chased after his dream instead of staying safe. I'm really happy to for him. And very proud. And I'm pretty sure I need to do the same thing. It's a much smaller life change -- no moving across the country -- and yet it terrifies me. I wonder if I should just set a date and start telling people that I'm going to freelance at the start of 2016, for instance. Then I give notice at Apple in October or so for an end date of Jan 15 to take advantage of vacations. I don't know what I'd do about insurance. I'd need to investigate obamacare options. How much will it cost to keep my doctor at Stanford? For my Botox treatments? Then I could sell my car and start living a better life.

I am now aware of the importance of family, friends, home, and roots. In a new way I can't explain. The secret is to make my own tribe. We arrived in this area near Washington DC about 4 years ago, but I have had no luck in making friendships. The short holidays to my home town on the west coast was the only break in my profound loneliness. "Many people had been through a move like this," I told myself. "Don't be self-centered. Making sacrifices were part of a marriage." Anxiety about choosing between my tribe and my husband was a daily experience. The right thing to do, I felt, was to be a good wife and stay with him. So, I tried to find work. I tried to find volunteer opportunities. I tried to find activities. And came up empty each time. I prayed to G-d. I talked to therapists. No answers. Just a brick wall at every turn. My first and only tribe is 2500 miles away from where I'm currently living. In early spring of this year, the thought of living through another winter of snowstorms broke my spirit. So there was only one answer left: alone if necessary, I must move back to my home town. I was going to wait until fall to make the trip. Before the snow and after the heat. I couldn't bring myself to tell him. Afraid of losing my marriage, afraid of hurting him, and afraid of a cross-country trip by myself, I worried. But I had no other choice. I had to go. So, I kept trying to find the right time to tell him. No good time presented itself. More anxiety. A fortunate stroke of serendipity in July of this year. First, my husband got a job offer starting in October of this year (still a month to go) IN OUR HOME TOWN. Right after that news was the email from our landlord telling us the owners are reclaiming their house for themselves. Suddenly, the plan became clear to me. G-d had always had a plan. I just didn't know. And I had received a phenomenal gift. He did for me what I could not do for myself. And I am grateful. And relieved, inspired, and filled with joy. Now, what stuff to sell and what to move...

Crashing my bike not once but twice and getting scarped up but being generally ok. Since I just began avid cycling on a new road bike in spring and I had been cautious, what if I fall? But when I hit some loose gravel and my back wheel slid out from under me and I got scraped up but was ok I gained some confidence. Then the second time when I hit a curb while going too fast and flew off the bike and was even more scraped up--I have scars!--but ok, I felt kind of relieved. There I fell twice and I am ok. I am tougher than I thought. And now I find I don't worry so much about crashing.

The most significant experience in the past year has been my knee injury and recovery. The event itself was incredibly traumatic, to the point that I had flashbacks and anxiety for a couple months following. Thank goodness my neighbors were home and helped. Once in the ER, Dave came to comfort and be with me. It was amazing to have him there, and he even went back to my house and got some things for me before coming back and sleeping in the uncomfortable chair at my side. This experience showed me what true loyalty and selflessness is. He went to work on Monday and then came to the hospital to check me out. He slept on the floor of my room, and helped me get in and out of bed, go to the bathroom, cooked and fed me for 2 days, and then took a half-day to take me to my doctor's check up. It was incredible. After the ambulance, ER, and surgery, I remember going to physical therapy for the first time, where they taught me how to use my crutches and get down and up. The nurse said I would have to sit in the backseat of a car sideways with my leg out straight for at least 6 weeks. I tried mimicking this on a chair, and it was so difficult. I started crying because I realized how long of a road this was going to be. After traveling to my parents house and back, weening off the pain meds, and starting actual physical therapy with Erica, I gained understanding of not how lucky I was to only sustain minor injuries, but lucky to not have to be put in a more traumatic experience. I thought about soldiers coming back from war a lot. How their memories might haunt them since I was getting flashbacks from a stupid accident where I simply cut my knee over 3 months following it. How do these people continue? How much work would losing your leg or arm or having a back injury be? It all seemed like an experience meant to teach me about empathy, patience, and relinquishing control. I like to think that I have a better inclination to empathize since this experience. I might be a tiny bit more patient, but being out-of-control is still very difficult for me, and event today, as I fill this out, I realize how far I need to come with understanding that I have no control over anything, and that worrying or trying to change my situation, at least in some aspects, is futile. I still feel dumb when I think about my accident. How dumb was I do put my knees on that table, but then I think about all the amazing things that came from it. I got to see the immense love and patience my partner has, how blessed my life has been that this is the most traumatic health problem I have ever had, and the new sense of thankfulness that I can walk, and shower, and drive myself with no problems whenever I want.

The most significant event was probably meeting Courtney. She has made me so happy and I am so lucky to have her. At the same time, I do not think I am over my "selfish" streak. But maybe that is a good thing, to be a little more self-focused and a little less dependent on some overly romantic notion of relationships.

My daughter graduated high school and left for college just days before Rosh Hashanah; my son graduated middle school and is now in high school. The latter one is simply an example of time passing. But the former one has affected me more deeply than I'd ever thought; I feel a sense of loss and simultaneous pride that are deeper than I coudl have imagined.

One of my daughters was hospitalized for a week due to mental illness. It ripped me apart. I am on edge afraid it will happen again. I blame myself and yet don't know what I could have done differently. And I want my own pre-parenting life back, which can never be.

This past week has perhaps been the most challenging week: first my wife's 87-year old father was hospitalized with an undiagnosed ailment that seems as if it could be the end, and then four days later our dog was diagnosed with bone cancer. Both experiences have left me immensely conscious of the fragility of life that we take for granted, and which I need to take for granted in order to go on living the way I do, with joy and optimism. They also both reminded me of the value of friends and family: my brother and his wife reaching out to mine while she was in the hospital to be near her dad, and the support of friends about our pet. One situation had a happy ending for now, but we all know where both situations will lead.

I've had several significant experiences in the last year. The most heart shattering experience was putting Noland to sleep after a a disgusting and brave battle with cancer last year. My heart still hurts over that. Learning to let him go was a big lesson. I was grateful to him for teaching me to love him bigger, to be present to every moment because I never knew if it was my last with him and moving mountains to save him. It was one of the hardest things I've done in my life and I became stronger for caring for him. I've also been challenging myself to trust a man in love- learning how to be a partner and give and be open when I want to shrink. Owning myself in everything I've got is something I've been working on awhile and I've made some major headway around some insecurities: letting him see me bare, submitting to him, staying committed while learning I have hsv1 and trusting he would be there...It's been a big year in owning myself and trusting my gut and being present.

Getting Married. Grateful that it happened with so few complications. Motivated to do whatever comes next.

A significant experience this past year was the first time I visited Grandma Laya after her stroke. I had been hearing from family about how she was doing and how she was recuperating, but it didn't fully hit me how upset and anxious I was about her until I saw her for the first time afterwards. I walked into her room in Rose Court in Maris Grove and we both just broke down and started crying and crying. I was so grateful that she was still there and able to communicate on some level, and also upset, angry and confused about what had happened to her. My work with older adults and my experiences with my grandparents both build off of each other, and I'm a better granddaughter and a better social worker for it. I am very aware of mortality and death and the frailty of old age - it's my profession. Yet when it comes to my grandparents and my parents and other family I am in a sort of denial that it can and will happen to all of us. Life is so short - the days are long but the years are short, and life can change in seconds. Appreciate life, be grateful for the people that make your life better because they will not always be around.

I moved across the country last november from california to Nashville. I moved because i had cancer last spring and did my surgey & recovery in nashville & the doctors want to follow me for five years. I am very grateful to be cancer free. But i an still in recovery both emotionaly & physically from everything. Still in transition. Still finding my way and still trying to regain rhythm. It's been a hard year but I am very thankful to be alive!

My trip to Nepal was significant. I am grateful. I am in awe of myself as a solo traveler. My heart is touched and saddened by the earthquake that came later in the year and the devastation it brought to their lives and to their ability to make a living. It stays with me and I will stay with them I am also pleased that I took care of my body and traveled to Cuba and Mexico as a result and again made new friends and connections and opened up my heart and head to other worlds and realities. My travel is really self directed learning experiences. It's odd it seems as though we have been taught that traveling is a vacation an indulgence from the reality of daily life responsibilities, a diversion. But for me it is my school, my way of continuing to learn in life , to expand my knowledge to become wise and more compassionate. It is not my diversion but my academy for experiencing growth as a human being. And that knowledge is used for my own edification and for others as well, as I am promoting compassion for the other, empathy for the other, and understanding of our ultimate connectedness. I can also be a window for others to view these other places and people and a person to emulate, for those who might need to see a woman be strong and have the courage to strike out, to walk into the world. It is my vocation this journeying.

Turning 36 has felt like a huge change. I actually answered Q2 first, but I'll reiterate there what I said; I've quit drinking and started work with 2 extra jobs on top of my shitty day job. I started learning to speak up more and not care so much what people think; not be mean or an asshole, just be frank. I'm still working on it but getting there. But with the peak behind me and 40 closer than 30 now, I was in a panic. Then I said "fuck it." It's never too late in life to do what you want. Then I went to L.A. and felt a big pull to live there. Sure, why not? If I never try I'll never know and it's better than moping around saying "I wish I had tried this, boo hoo." So going to L.A. and turning 36 came together in a way that really has spoken to me. Let's do this thing. P.S. Also I quit drinking. Apparently that's like, a big deal. (It was, I just think it's funny that I forgot to note it until 5-6 after answering this question).

I have had way too much drama this year and not in the acting kind of way. I wish for the rest of the year to be less stressful. Found out my Dad was cheating on my Mum, Mum is still with Dad though why I have no clue. Had a friend dragged from work by the police because they thought he was in danger of hurting himself or someone all because of petty jealously. And then another friend is going to lose his second wife and his third child all because his wife thinks he is having sex with cosplayers including ME! I told her I look at him as my big brother and nothing more have been in a very long term relationship and am very happy.

I started my new job in Covance last October, as a medical writer. It pulled me out of the quagmire of being a pharmacist and being a bum. It also has left me financially precarious and living paycheck to paycheck. It's been challenging at times though, which I've needed, getting a beasting from an attractive French consultant over the fiddly details of a PowerPoint deck - it's made me more meticulous. It's still not creative enough though and I crave my independence like air. The people there are great, but I am the greatest in my opinion and it is for myself I am living. I'm not a slave, especially with my wage it feels like it - but I can do better.

After 9 months bureaucratic trouble I am now officially registered in the country I immigrated to. With all the benefits and disadvantages. Benefits mostly. It was a troublesome way until then. Often nearly lost my hope (and sometimes my temper). When I finally got the registration, I was relieved, but not as much as I thought. Because in the meantime I had to learn how to live in nowhere land. Now, I have to get settled. I am here to stay, I guess.

I started a serious, intense, beautiful romantic relationship. I feel so blessed. It's still a struggle. It's a struggle to think I could be happy and fine and share that with someone. To be happy in a relationship. Somehow that feels strange. It's been meeting someone that surpasses my expectations of emotional maturity and ability to sense, feel, listen. Someone that pushes and asks and doesn't give up when the tough things come up. Someone who has done more to help me face and step over my "blockages", my fear of vulnerability, my shame of my feelings, more than any therapy could do. cause it was doing so in the face of someone who I was vulnerable to. I am not vulnerable in the face of a therapist. they are on my side. they won't give up. whereas a relationship, they can pull back and decide I'm too much. I've been inspired to grow beyond what I thought was doable. the first two months were so confrontational. it was beautiful but so difficult. so confronting. then it settled. we got more used to it. it wasn't such a struggle for me to open up and therefore when opening up there was no conflict when in the past there would have been. discovering just how true, how deep it runs, the truth that communication is everything. that as long as you communicate. now, however, as it's quieter, as it's not as exciting, I fear again but something completely different. I fear I'm over it. I fear I've taken what I need/want from it and will discard it. I fear I won't be able to live with it. that I'll consider it 'dull'. again the fear of happy. that he won't be so appealing as a result. that now that I've reached this other step, it all seems so far away and not as significant, that I won't remember and value this person for what they've been able to give me. that their 'shine' will wear off, but not because it's actually wearing off but just wear off in my eyes, almost like you get used to a new dazzling beautiful colour and therefore don't find it as beautiful any more. it's commonplace. so I'm blessed. I'm grateful. I'm lighter. I'm older. I'm stronger. I'm fearful. I'm suspicious. I'm scare at my own ability to sabotage my happiness. and I've gone from looking at the future with excitement for possibilities, for sharing with this person, to anticipation that I might fuck it up.

I left my job at a decent little company to join a new company. I was promised a lot in terms of money, title and scope of responsibility and I had high hopes that this would be the career move would be my last. The owner and I discussed what I would be doing to start and what I would be doing 6 months, 12 months and years down the road. The path seemed clear and exciting. All those promises were then broken. The owner of the company hired a good friend of his to assume the bigger roles and responsibilities that were to be mine. Now, I report to this person. Adding insult to injury is the fact that this person is woefully unqualified. It is amazing how one person ( a manager) can greatly affect the way one feels about one's job. I now hate mine. It's been interesting experience though in that I can now totally see why people stay at a job and what makes people leave- and it really isn't always about the money or title or benefits - it's the people, specifically, it's the team "leader". I'm feeling pretty resentful. Hopefully, my resentment will turn to gratitude for being forced to find something where I am a better fit.

This past year I, I guess, officially got clean. Summer 2014 I went to IOP and went back out drinking in the winter. After a disappointing New Years, where I ended up smoking with my two closest college friends, I realized that the grass isn't greener? That I've got nothing more to lose by giving this sobriety thing a shot. So, January 2 2015 is my clean date. This whole process is what comes to mind when I think of "significant" though i'm finding it hard to wrap my head around how it's affected me. Every aspect of my life changed when I first went to rehab--how could I pinpoint what's different when everything is? My relationship with my parents took a 180. I'm not remotely as anxious nor ever do I ever feel sick anymore... I still have a desire to use sometimes, and at times I miss my friends and my old lifestyle. My job helped give me structure and I have somewhat become part of a fellowship here. I am beyond grateful--who knows where I would have ended up if I hadn't surrendered just enough to get some help. I'm also a bit resentful-- why couldn't I have held it together just a bit longer? I would have still acquired my job and maybe even would have kept some friends. Maybe even started going out and socializing in a way I was too stuck to do in college. I can't think like that though. I am an addict and it doesn't matter now what I think-I-might-want-to-do-or-not-do about it. Just for today, right?

I got the job I had been hoping to get--one I had essentially dreamed up myself. On the one hand, the process of applying for the job was utterly terrifying, and caused me to confront all my biggest doubts and fears about my ability to cope in an academic career. I am amazed and grateful that they gave me the job, and feel inspired--for the first time in about 10 years--in my job. It's a VERY positive change to have more energy and true motivation to do my job. Finally! I feel inspired to create new programs--and mainly, to inspire others to believe they can improve their skills--with support from us! I also hope to share inspiration with my team, whom I am so grateful to work with.

My trip to the UK and Belgium rises above so many of the wild and wonderful adventures I have had so far in my life. It was a perfect end to a whirlwind summer, and it propels me now into the next season of my life. Yes, I am grateful for the time, though it brought up much that will require deep processing. It showed me what life could be like when I get adequate rest, nutrition and affection. I learned just how dark some of my dark spots are, and got inspired to shine a light on them, to see how they might become hopeful, beautiful places. I spent time with my beloved, I met distant relatives who are so surprisingly like me, and I pushed my limitations on physical activity, emotional processing, and cultural flexibility. I will spend a long time figuring out what it all meant to me, and that's a good thing. I never thought I'd leave the country again - now that I finally have, I trust it will not be the last time my feet touch foreign soil and my eyes greet the faces of all the friends I haven't met yet.

I got a new job! I am so grateful, relieved AND inspired that I took the leap to live a life that ensures that MY NEEDS MATTER.

Baby! Oh my goodness she's awesome.

There have been a few significant experiences this year. One amazing thing was that I got to go on a dream trip to Croatia, Slovenia, and Bosnia, on an 8 day tour. I met some fantastic people, saw some beautiful countryside, and had an overall awesome experience. I am most grateful for this experience and especially that it was a gift, paid for by a good friend who wanted to be generous. Not such a great experience this year was losing my job unexpectedly, and having to deal with the shock and disappointment of this sudden blow. I was resentful (still am at times), but I am grateful for having the summer off and being able to have wonderful experiences with the people I love most.

I moved to Missoula, and moved in with Zoe. What first felt like a big mistake, evolved into a miracle. I fell in love with Zoe all over again and traveled to Glacier National Park, Yellowstone, and Canada. I saw sights that felt life-changing. I saw things that everyone needs to see before they die. It was amazing and beautiful.

David's back surgery in 2015; I'm grateful that the surgery alleviated his pain, but I think it somehow affected his cognitive abilities slightly. He sometimes has difficulty finding the words, or remembering what he was saying. He's aware of it, too, which is so sad. I know he's afraid of dementia, after seeing his father failing.

Our fathers failing health issues and one sides demands for our continuous visits to them without taking into consideration our schedules and the amount of money we are spending for ourselves and children to go visit. The other side of the family continues its dysfunction with a sibling that only communicates when it is to their convenience.

Wow. So many significant experiences. I got engaged which made me feel ecstatic and hopeful. I planned a wedding which mostly made me feel resentful. I left a not-so-great job which felt scary and liberating. I started a new job which feels daunting but exciting. I moved back to my hometown which feels weird and comforting. And many of my friendships have changed greatly which makes me feel sad. In all of this I think I have learned how to better advocate for myself, to set good boundaries, to let things go, and to prioritize how I spend my mental energy. I hope next year is less crazy though.

I got to spend the summer in San Diego. I'm thankful for the experience because I loved it!

I went to Thailand and Laos and traveled alone through the countries. I felt proud of myself, and inspired by my surroundings. It was a refresh and made me realize how much more there was than what I normally see, or worry about, at home.

I didn't move to Chicago this year. I probably should have if I wanted to see how stuff could naturally progress with this guy. But I didn't, and I turned it into a test of how much he loved me. It was really hard to realize that he was still nice but not interested. Or at least more interested in his new surroundings than a vague future. I was really bitter and resentful for a long time. I couldn't walk around my hometown without running into people who asked about how he was doing. We had three dramatic stages of breakup. 1. The I need more time to think, 2. "I've never cheated before, i have to go tell her" "how the hell did i become the other woman? " amd then finally 3. He came home and only talked politics and i knew that I was done. I'm still sad sometimes.. but mostly im relieved that all that didn't happen while I was in Chicago.

How curious to recognize that the event that wants to leap out for this question came on the dawn of the new year. Then the axis of everything must be the first days of May. Describe. The culmination of accumulated blindnesses. The big turning away of an iterated little turning away, turning away. The suddenness of it, the sudden dropping away of the ground beneath my feet, the roof over my head. The path before me rushing me away with an urgency. My shattered heart. My anger, my shame. The hope, the curiosity, the telos that had taken me suddenly a flimsy, imaginary thing before the immensity of its cost. I told Gabe I had cheated on her with the Jewish nonprofit complex, but I had also written: (signifier of my not-yet-enough) She invited me to speak, she was the midwife of my speaking, she asked, she heard, interlocutor, she drew forth the goldenest spark, the fire which asked for this midwife as sacrifice. How did it affect me? How did it affect me? How did it affect me? How did it affect me? How did it affect me? How did it affect me? /my life as an unfolding / response to our separation./ /if i have found what i sought, or here collected / the fragments, signifiers of beginning or / ongoingness or hope/

Our darling granddaughter was born in January. I feel so amazingly connected to her. I feel pure joy in her presence. And as our grandson has been adjusting to her, I feel that I've also been adjusting to him. I've had less patience with him as I've been dealing with my in-laws. The other major event was moving them from Florida to Baltimore. It was frustrating, exhausting, and more work than I ever could have imagined. And I'm still dealing with paperwork. And they're oblivious to the mess that their finances are in, how dirty their house was, and how much stuff we had to sort through and give away. Unbelievable. But they're settled in assisted living and being well cared for. I'm grateful and relieved for that. And now that they're five minutes away it's so much easier to deal with their needs.

I found myself overworked and stressed out once again. I started taking things personally. But this time I saw myself doing this and was able to pull myself out of it fairly quickly. There was a lesson in this too. Hopefully I will remember going forward

Realizing the immense indifference beyond me

My best friend died. He was more than just a friend, he was my soulmate. We became friends 23 years ago. I am his youngest brother's godfather. I was going to be the best man at his wedding. He was going to be the best man at my wedding. He went into a coma, and his brain started to fail. But he just didn't let go. I live in the other side of the planet. When I finally got to talk to him over the phone, I asked him to give me a last birthday present, and to finally get some rest. He was declared clinically dead 10 minutes later. I am grateful I hd the chance to tell him one last time how much he means to me. And that I know he was waiting for me before he moved on to realms we don't know.

breaking up with my boyfriend on april 6th. its been a trust test of my strength, my friends, etc. I have gotten myself back but am still mourning him as well as many other losses in my life. i am all- grateful, resentful, hurt, happy.

On a boat in the wilderness waters of BC this summer... sitting in a bay between a school of over 100 dolphins and the 8 orcas that were hunting them. We watched for over an hour, as the whales herded and chased the dolphins. It was beautiful, terrible and dramatic.. a sight I will never forget. I was awe-struck at the raw beauty of nature, aware of the fragility of our environment and of our lives.

My daddy passed away. So hard. I gave up a lot to be closer to him. It's been 6 1/2 months. So much self discovery resulted from dealing with this loss. A lot of healing. And learning that emotions are all ok, to not feel guilty about what I do or don't feel. I think about him still, very often, perhaps less than when he first died. So much reminds me of him and stirs up my emotions. But it also feels good to be in touch with it all.

My parents have decided to sell the apartment we've had since I was born. At first, it was a scary unsettling prospect for me, since I've been living in that apartment for the past 2 years, but I began to realize what a gift it actually is for all of us. The reality of it really happening has forced me to really decide where I want the next chapter of my life to take place and called attention to the fact that I've kind of been coasting the past 2 years, living my life on sort of a default basis. It feels really good to make a decision and go towards something. It feels scary but right to admit that I'm not happy living in NYC and I don't see myself living, growing and thriving here. So I'm moving to North Carolina! I've been incubating this idea for a while now and it's kind of scary and exciting that I'm actually making it happen. I feel like I'm about to enter an entirely new chapter of my life and I'm feeling very grateful and inspired to have the time to really honor this transition and get closure before moving on.

In my 28th year, I made the decision to move to a new campus. This felt like a much needed change, in order to renew and restore my faith in education and find a new, reinvigorated purpose for my work. When the year started in August 2014, I found lots of opportunities for growth and change. Towards the end of this school year, I found myself pursuing a new type of teaching position on the new campus. This was a class that has never been taught, and the content and objectives resonated with me so strongly, that I knew I was a good fit for the position. Now, four weeks into this position, I feel so full of hope and inspiration. I continue to know that my students are resilient and full of deep, experiential and realized knowledge. It is clear that what my students teach me and one another is the reason I am where I am, doing what I'm doing. And although I have days where I enter the "dungeon" of self-defeat and overwhelm, I know in my core, that my work has a meaningful product.

My work environment has descended into toxic dysfunction. I am irate that the false claims of sex discrimination and sexual harassment by two or three women were investigated, and when determined to be without merit, did not result in any meaningful consequences. I am angry that a job I really like has been ruined by a few hateful, self-centered garbage, and that our management does nothing to live by the standards they claim to have and expect. I used to look forward to going to work, now I dread each day for whatever new outrage, false claim, manipulation or distortion it will present.

Two months ago, my mother called me "stupid." I know that this is not true, and it hurt me deeply. But because I have been an ACA member now for over a year, I was able to think rather than just react. My mother has insulted me all my life and I would get angry and defensive. I am still defensive around her but she no longer makes me angry. I am thankful for that.

My ex boyfriend cheated on me. It brought me a huge range of emotions. At first, I felt like I was physically dying for 2 weeks. I lost all motivation for everything, even to eat, to sleep, etc. After a month I was starting to feel better, because I spent time with my family over Christmas break. I was starting to think that things would eventually be alright again. I had to learn how to live as a single person again though, I had been with him almost all of my adult life. I had to learn to go from "we" to "me". In the end, now over 9 months later, I am extremely grateful that it happened. It freed me from the wrong relationship that I was so trying so hard to convince myself was right. It taught me how to handle pain, to trust my gut, it taught me to get what I want from life and to be happy in new ways. It let me meet more people and have new experiences with other guys. I am happy that he cheated, and nine months ago I never would have imagined I could say that.

My father passed away in February. It was after a long hardship with esophageal cancer for about one year. There was some relief in his suffering coming to an end, but it doesn't make up for him not being in my life anymore. He endured such pain, trauma and emotion. I know he thought he had so much left to do and his life was being cut short. We don't decide when we go, but I think for those who experience an illness that leads to death, God is giving you the gift of resolve. Know that you have done what you need to and others will pick up where you leave off. I'm sad that he is not here for me to talk to, to laugh with, to roll my eyes at, but I cherish his memories and am grateful for all he had to teach me. Including dying with dignity and grace is a way to show incredible strength. Not a day goes by without me honoring and missing him. I love you, Dad! Plus my friend JRM took a job in Phoenix in January. I went from seeing him every week, talking to him regularly and enjoying him being near, to him being gone. It has taken some adjustment. I think he has faired better than me. Though I know he misses me too. And Lisa C retired from Allstate. Wow. All this change. Significant people in my life, moved on. It's not that I feel alone. I'm strong and independent. It's just that I miss them. Their support. And their love.

This year I got engaged! We are getting married in a little less than two months. I am excited and happy. I am trying to understand how this affects me as a person... I am entering a new phase of expectations and activities. I think it will be fun.

Rio! After a long and nearly traumatic arrival, with a spirited wail, he let us know he was glad to have been born. We caught the perfect spirit, said Mira-El, and he landed in the honey-pot, said Gramma Can. My heart stretched in ways I didn't know were possible as we walked irreversibly across this invisible threshold into parenthood. Annie Lamott accompanied the first months so perfectly -- your heart, she says, no longer exists only in your body. The joy, the vulnerability, the hopes....the empathy. Nothing compares. And after the long road to get here, nothing could feel sweeter....

I had a baby!! Immensely grateful. Was a struggle and I got my happy ending. It came with a very severe mastitis and more post partum depression, so I felt a little bitter that I was once again unable to experience pure happiness after a birth, but everyone is healthy now and we're fast forwarding to now!

It was a hot sunny day in mid-august and I found myself faced with the same herculean task every BC High student is faced with each year: community service. Before you deem me self-centered, consider my situation. As an over privileged adolescent, I am entitled to all of the delights in life my parents provide me with. From beach days to adventures to Canobie Lake Park, all are essential. However, this hot August day was marked by a much different vibe: helping others. This taboo concept of helping someone other than myself had seemed impossible. As I found myself in the immensely warm car fidgeting to no end, en route to a day camp, this idea of caring for others was now tangible. At the YMCA summer camp I would be doing my 60 service hours at, I would be around preschool aged children from 8 am to 4 pm, every day. How fun. Cleaning vomit, accidental urinations and if I was lucky, both. In my selfish eyes, my last month of summer was going to be dreadful. And for a short time it was. However, somewhere between the attention longing tantrums and lost lunchboxes, I found understanding. Although most of the situations I found myself entangled in at summer camp were not the most inviting, some of them were. These scarce gems of fondness gave me reassurance. For every 25 moments of me wanting to rid myself of the burden of helping others, there was 1 that urged me to stay. It is in these rare moments, I realized helping others isn’t always a burden but a blessing. Although this seemingly archetypal story of a boy being changed by community service may seem worn out, it truly changed me and I am appreciative of every innocent snot-nosed preschooler I met on those hot summer days.

Losing the love of my life, Steven Carroll. It has made me feel dead inside - unable to share feelings or want to engage in relationships with anyone frankly.

It has been a big year and hard to pinpoint just one significant experience! Almost exactly 12 months ago we moved into our dream home and we are loving it. There is plenty of space for Gabi to play around in and for us to entertain guests and hosts parties. In fact, her 2nd bday party is less than a month away and it's great not having to search for a party venue! We are very settled in (although the mezuzzahs still need to be put up...) and we recently added a few more touches after taking home furniture from Justin's grandparents' apartment. Especially loving their clock that chimes on the hour. It reminds Justin of his grandparent's home and it adds a sense of tranquility to our home. Apart from the house...and probably the most significant change is that I finally quit working at the uni where I was bullied for never being good enough! A year ago I started my own business and at the very beginning of January I applied for a Marketing and Communications Coordinator role at North Shore Temple Emanuel. It was a 6 month contract role* and requested the exact experience that I have. However, the ad online said that it was meant to close off at the end of December. So it might have been too late but figured it was worth going for. Long story short, I got a phone call from NSTE the day after I applied and had 2 interviews...then I had the job! I gave 6 weeks notice so that I could finish up my O Week campaign at the uni (I wanted to do what was morally right for the Student Engagement team - didn't care about my managers). So I started at NSTE at the beginning of March and haven't looked back. The team at NSTE are absolutely amazing and I get more positive feedback than I know what to do with! Very different compared to the uni where I had to take positive feedback in dribs and drabs. I've been learning lots and I have the flexibility to start later to avoid traffic and I'm not treated like a child if I need to leave early. And I have come onboard as a contractor so NSTE is my first BIG client. So I have the security of work 3 days a week and then anything else I pick up is a bonus. I have developed a great working relationship with a local graphic designer who sends me copywriting jobs and she has been doing graphic design for NSTE. And through her, I had the amazing opportunity to present for 20 minutes on how to write compelling copy at a WordPress training session in front of 8 local business owners! I'm not too focused on building up the business too much at this stage because I want to allow enough family time, but I know that I can when ready. I also undertook 6 complimentary life/business coaching phone sessions with a woman who really helped me put things into perspective when trying to establish a work/life balance. Overall, I'm extremely grateful for the past year. It's been amazing and I've really felt myself grow as a person. mother and a new business owner. Looking forward to the next 12 months! *although it has been just over 6 months since I started now and I'm still there and going strong!

I made a decision I'd been putting off for a long time, the decision to cut a number of relatives from my life. My emotional connection to them was already dead, but I had not completely cut them from my life. I was letting them maintain ties to keep from hurting them, not wanting to seem cruel. But in the end, for my own health I decided to cut that lingering tie. I feel bad that I don't feel bad. It's just one thing I don't need to worry about, and my life has enough stress that it is a welcome change.

This last year I spent almost a month outside of North America, treking through parts of Iceland, England, and Scotland. The trip started as a way to get over and visit a very good friend of mine living in London, but became something much bigger--proof that being alone is never going to be a think that stops me. I sent myself some postcards as I went, and while some of the experience was just silly or fun, some moments I hope stay etched into my heart. Standing on a black sand beach on Iceland's south coast, looking out into the North Atlantic, for one. I've never felt (and never been) further from home, and yet, the small and powerful feeling in my chest, the feeling that I'm capable and connected and possessing a space in this world, hasn't been stronger. I think about going back at least once a day since getting home. Travel, it seems, really does stretch me and pull me in ways I don't expect it to. I'm glad to be home, but a part of me can't wait to go see more of this big wide world in which I'm just a single point.

This year I told a man that I loved him, and I meant it, and he told me he did…n't. And that hurt so badly. I didn't regret telling Ari. I was bursting to tell him. I didn't want to tell him, I thought it was too soon, but that Truth was coursing through my veins, so I cautiously/excitedly let it out. He asked if I was going to break up with him (or asked me not to break up with him?) and I assured him that wasn't my plan. Why would I break up with him because he didn't love me, yet. Yet. He assured me we were on track, he just wasn't there yet. It wasn't an argument, no one was in the wrong, there was nothing to solve. It was a matter of sentiment, emotion, and finding out what love really means. And apparently a big part of it is humility. He told me he didn't love me. And that played over and over again in my mind. But he was kind to me. And I was patient. And he loved me.

Thought I was having heart problems. After spending the night in the hospital hooked up to machines and getting my blood drawn every, it turned out to be indigestion and stress.

I found out that my parents were separating. At first I felt both angry and confused. Though I knew (and know) they will still love me and be there for me, it seemed to shatter any remaining illusions of childhood and further complicated the notion of "home."

I got married to my best friend and love of my life this year. We have not known each other for too long a time, but I felt that this is the closest I could ever come to saying yes to marriage. He understands me and pushes me to be a better person while at the same time being very different from me. I am grateful, I am relived. I found my partner and I did not let go. He makes me excited for the future. We got married at city hall in San Francisco at the top of the steps, right in front of the bust of Harvey Milk. Obergefell came down in favor of marriage, and 5 months later I was saying I do. There is a lot of learning about him left to do, but I have never been happier.

Oh, no biggie, I just had a baby. Jakob Tobias is named after his great-grandpa Carl Tobias, who died in November 2014, about a month after we told him we were going to have a baby. Jakob was born on April 9, 2015. He is a joy to be around at five months old, very curious in the world around him, loves leaves and being outside, has gorgeous blue eyes (for the moment) and two freckles. He's a baby, so - it's a joy and a challenge like none other to care for him, being his stay-at-home mama. The milestones are bittersweet! I love to hear him talk but miss his tiny-baby gurgles; he can maneuver himself to bat at my arm in bed now, but I have to be on my guard all the time now that he's somewhat mobile. And I have to think of him first, which is still a challenge for me most of the time.

I was passed over for a job that I would have been perfect for. It was given to a young girl with half the experience that I would have brought to the position. It appears that the young are being promoted, recognized, and rewarded in their positions, totally excluding those in their fifties. It has opened my eyes to some harsh realities of what it means to get older in the U.S. Very sad.

I got fired from a job I hated but couldn't justify quitting. I felt elated and relieved, but also rejected and depressed. I know that the job was a terrible fit for me, but that doesn't stop me from feeling like a failure. But it freed me from a bad job that made me miserable, and has opened up so many other opportunities for me. The only thing I actually miss is the money!

Alex realised that he SHOULD be an actor. He was in everything in his first year of uni and won awards. He has changed his degree from Psychology to English & Theatre Studies. He was in the revised The Tree of War and was PHENOMENAL. His performance made me realise that it's not just mother's bias - he is incredibly talented.

My nephew, Joey, was born. He is precious but very, very sick and watching my sister and brother-in-law and parents go through the roller coaster of emotions, along with going through it myself, has been really, really hard. I am happy that he exists, but I wish it could be easier for them. Also, my brother got engaged and is getting married and the wedding process makes me never want to go through that.

Earlier this year, I joined a band, recommended by a friend at work. The subtext to this was that she wanted to set me up on a date with a member of the band. Having been single for quite some time, with only a numerous disastrous flings or very brief relationships to my name over the past 8 years, my recent move to Oxford was partly inspired by the hope that I would be able to expand my social circle and, hopefully, meet someone. Trying new things was a big part of that, but I spent most of my first six months settling in/darting back and forth to London. It was only when I started a personal and professional development course at work that I realised I needed to take the bull by the horns, and I made going to Sol Samba an objective. I went along and by the second rehearsal, my intended fix up had invited me on a date. Six and a half months later I am grateful and inspired on almost a daily basis.

I graduated from grad school this past year. While a seemingly unimportant experience, it has affected me so deeply in ways that I would have never thought. I am grateful to be done with the process. And although I now realize how unnecessarily painful and tortorous it is (without a purpose for being so), I also understand how it is meant to dismantle me as a human. It was meant to break me. To cause me to see myself as invaluable. As weak. As incapable of succeeding. And all because I was not allowed to do what I wanted to do. The few times I broke free from that, I shined. It was definitely a lesson in freedom. Freedom is what I seek most in my life. I'm a bird unwilling to be caged. And any experience or moment that infringes upon my freedom is one that I will no longer actively seek or tolerate. If I so happen to experience it again, then I will experience it fully in that moment so that I am reminded once more that I am free.

My wife became pregnant. I was worried that we wouldn't be able to convieve or that it would take a long time but we succeeded immediately. It has without a doubt defined the past year and my wife and I have learned more about ourselves and eachother and we are getting a glimpse of how we will act as parents. Throughout the pregnancy, the most significant experience was receiving "less than ideal" test results, dealing with the implications, and eventually learning that everything was okay. I got an inkling of how important the well-being of our still unborn daugher will be, and I learned that I can be strong enough through difficulties for my wife's sake.

I have reflected greatly on the state of politics in America, and determined that in spite of what the media is reporting, the politicians accurately reflect both the American electorate and the American historical experience. I am aware that it appears frightening - but perhaps fear of failure will be a greater motivator than fear of success.

My youngest son (at time of telling 17) telling me he tried to kill himself when he was younger. Affected me in feeling that I failed my kids in so many ways. Caused me to feel very sad. Wanted to talk to him about it, and he wouldn't let me when I tried. Finally, for closure I wrote him an email. This helped me feel better. Months later he told me, "that long email, I didn't read it just deleted it". I don't know if he did or not. I have worked this through - past is the past. I am very available, here for my sons. He wouldn't have told me if we didn't have a good relationship now. He has thanked me for always being there for him, and loving him so.... use it to better today

I got divorced. It showed me what true partnership really is and that we really did honor our promise to each other. I'm grateful for how we handled it, for what we have created, for the courage to let go, for honoring myself and my ex-husband and the universe showing me it goes better than I could ever imagine/dream it to go.

I went through the trial of my friend's murderer this spring. It was supposed to happen in the fall, but got delayed multiple times. Now that it is over and he has been sentenced to life in prison, I feel a greater sense of closure now and think I can move on with my life in a way that I may not have been able to before.

The past year has been a roller coaster ending with the death of my father, leaving just my sister and myself as the last of our family. We have a 'play nice' relationship, so the event while it should have draw us closer has made us play nice for now. Still waiting for the other shoe to drop constantly and can not wait until these events are in the past. It is like a chapter of life is ending with the death of the last parent...

J and I lost two pregnancies, one at 18 weeks and one at 12. How did it affect me? I don't wish on stars anymore, because it's frivolous. I have even more respect for people who go through hard things and come out still believing that the world is a good place. I learned that attributing meaning to possibly mundane things is my form of religion, while J finds comfort in randomness. I understand how to helps others through real grief now, and I know the beauty of community support be it in the form of meals, hugs, or care packages dropped on the front porch. I'm more pro-choice than ever. I gained a new kind of love, even if I don't have a child to share it with yet. I'm stronger. I'm weaker. I'm hopeful and terrified. I hope my answer to this question next year is "I gave birth."

Having almost lost my dad the year before this one, seeing him thrive again this year was amazing. There are still hurdles, but he is healthier than ever, and I could not be more grateful or more keenly aware of the fragility of life and those I love. I hope I am more easy with my loved ones, more forgiving of them and of myself. I hope I remember to tell them I love them as often as I can in as many ways as possible. I have always know that life can be taken in an instant, but to be lucky enough to have someone I love so dearly live through that instant a few times over, I try my best not to take the living for granted.

My father passed away. I don't believe anyone can prepare for a parent's passing, but when they go unexpectedly it's especially heartbreaking. I loved my dad with all my heart. He was my father, best friend, and idol. In many ways, we were opposites. In other ways, we are very much so alike. I am grateful that he was my father. He taught me the art of storytelling, humor, and how to think like an individual. His failures have pushed me to seek more in life. And I reaped the reward of his successes. I strive to make my dad proud everyday. I live in fear that I will let him down. Not one day goes by where I don't see his face, hear his voice, or feel his big arms around me for a hug. I don't think I'll ever be the same.

My mom fell and broke her leg. She then had an ORIF placed on her tibia. She walked on it in Grimes and it never healed. Then it got infected. She had surgery to remove all of the hardware in her knee. All of it. She spent 6 weeks on IV antibiotics and 3 months in a wheelchair. She will be in a wheelchair during my wedding. It was