Think about a major milestone that happened with your family this past year. How has this affected you?

It has brought our family closure, particularly our children with my husband and me, and this has warmed my heart and made me very happy

Finally an easy one. My youngest child got engaged to her boyfriend in Israel. This is both wonderful and bittersweet, Israel is far away, and at least for the present, they will live there.

I found out my sister is unhappily married. Their marriage appears perfect to the outside world. It reminded me things are rarely what they seem or even what people portray.

We had 3 weddings and a baby added to the family in the past year. Family is growing!

My grand daughter was born a year ago. Since she lives near hear, we have had the opportunity to babysit and see her grow up. We did not leve close to our other grandkids, so this was a trhill.

The divorce effected everyone. All the family had to make adjustments. I was happy that my son seemed happier but I felt abandoned and redundant. This is just the way it is and I am moving on with my life. An opportunity, thinking positively.

I can't think of a milestone, but everyone in my family is doing WELL! Joey has been with Myranda for over a year and they seem happy. They live together in Brattleboro. My mom doesn't have enough work or enough money, but she is also happy. And my dad seems to be mostly physically and emotionally recovered from cancer. Hoping that this year will bring only happy milestones! (of course, I'm always terrified something bad will happen, and I'll be far away)

The passing away of my father-in-law. These things can happen so quickly. Life is so fickle. Here I advocate saving for retirement, but some people don't even make it to retirement. You have to enjoy every day, and spend it with those you love. You can't know how many days you'll have left with those people you love.

My second son entered high school and my oldest one finished it. It has affected me positively. I like watching them growing up and coming into their own.

This milestone isn't that far in the past. I moved out and in a flat with my boyfriend. My sister also moved out earlier this year. So we both left our parents home. It is a strange feeling, we seem to have grown up now.

We got married. I think that is a big commitment. And an important sign to us and the world that we belong together. My mother even made it to the wedding. She travelled on her own. On the other hand, that brought up some conflicts with my sister (still have not met her - I have not seen her since 25 years...and I have to say, it is me, I keep her on distance. I don't feel ready for this yet) and with my brother and sister-in-law. I find them difficult right now.

My youngest child left home, which has made me sad, but also returned me to my own life journey.

My father had a knee operation which did not heal properly. As my grandmother, who lives with my parents, has dementia this has further stretched my parents ability to care for her. I worry about my parents - they are not as able as they were and their retirement has been spent taking care of others. I just wish they could catch a break for a little while.


My great-nephew turned 21. It made me think about how quickly time passes and how I should make the most of the time I have.

The biggest milestone with family this past year is that my parents are finally coming to visit me. I've lived abroad for over four years now and not once have they even attempted to come. We talked about this trip last year, but to know it's finally happening is huge. I hope they enjoy themselves and that this trip will offer more insight into my world and how I choose to live my life.

For the first time probably since we have been together, we have found ourselves (as a couple) by ourselves in our home. Quite different. As long as we don't take it for granted and continue to cherish it, it'll be good for us.

My oldest son started (real) school. I was surprised how emotional I felt about it - his independence is strengthening each day, and my feelings are not keeping step with it! But at the same time, it is absolutely amazing to see how well he is transitioning, managing his shyness, and trying his best each day.

I think when Rick invited me and Donna to go spend time with Grace before she went into the home was important. It really brought us together. Since then Rick has reached out more. I feel the estrangement that we experienced amongst each other is changing.

I turned 60 this year. First thing I did when I woke up and thought about what day is was, was laugh. Don't know why it struck me as humorous, but it did. I've been laughing about it ever since!

This year I lost my beloved dog, Bonny. It was more devastating than I expected....,a chapter of my life ended with her. She was the last dog I felt young with, the dog who helped mend and hold together a failing marriage, and who was with me when it ended. Her passing is forcing me to confront all the ways I am still stuck and where I have yet to move forward. I miss her - and how happy, strong and confident I felt around her amazing energy. Now, I have to find - or recreate those qualities without her.

Grandson Corbin was diagnosed with Leukemia. It seemed to come out of nowhere and slammed us all. Corbin is not quite 3 years old. Life seems so unfair at times -- why should an innocent little fellow have to be subjected to such an awful disease and treatment? For that matter, why should ANYONE have to deal with it? He's shown himself to be a little trooper, though, and remains cheerful and sweet. We are all looking forward to his final chemo day (hopefully in January), though he will continue to be monitored for 3 more years. I think the fragility of life has been magnified for all of us. I feel like our family has pulled together more, with minor disagreements vanishing. If there is a silver lining in all of this, that would be it -- that we all seem to realize the overall importance of family, and sticking up for each other in the rough times.

My dog of 12 years recently passed away. He was my best friend and I still haven't been able to process it. I'm scared to go back home

I become much closer with Kim and Susan as a result of the 5th step. I am consciously trying to become a better listener. The other big thing I think is working on not taking things so personally. That is a huge step but is helping my serenity. I'm not as close with Sharon or Lauren, or at least it feels that way. I know I need to expand my network and start building some new friendships. It hurts, but I know I am ok...I need time to take the time to invest in other relationships.

Nothing I can think of. I live alone, have no children, my brothers live far away.

So, almost a year ago, Lara called me very upset, because she had discovered that Brendon had been spending time with her apprentice/assistant who was staying with them, from the UK for a few months. As it turns out, according to what he told Lara, they kissed. This was obviously devastating to Lara and Brendon also struggled with whatever he was going through. I was one of the only people Lara felt she could confide in and there was a lot of phone calls over a few weeks while Lara dealt with this. She kicked the girl out. Her and Brendon had to work through some stuff, which at this point, seems to have worked. Brendon's ability to reflect is vast. His ability to be vulnerable enough to look at this flaws and have the courage to face and change them is limited. He wants to, I have no doubt, but this represents a monumental challenge for him. He, like us all, carries a lot of baggage from childhood and learnt (deep rooted) behaviours that don't serve him well. Brendon knows that I know about this and I have attempted to talk to him about it, but in a pretty supportive general sense. I feel I might address it again when I'm home over Christmas. If he is unwilling to face these battles head on, they will again very much impact his marriage and relationships with other people. And also how he feels about himself. It has made me realise that, no matter how close people are to you, they aren't perfect and you can't control what they do. We all fuck up. Relationships are complex. So complex and that they decided to stick it out and work on it gives me hope and makes me proud. On the other hand, it has done little to raise the regard of relationships in my eyes. I realised that, yep, men are simple and foolish and cheat. This adds to a belief I have that is not helpful. That all relationships are eventually destroyed. You cannot trust your partner, no matter how long you have known them because they are just human. And our choices have consequences for lots of people. But I did and will stand by both of them, whatever happens down the track. I still have faith and confidence in Brendon and most of all, I hope he is happy,

We recently lost Clem. I guess you could argue that she was not family, but to me she was. She picked me. I am still in awe of that. Of all the people that worked at that hospital, she picked me and welcomed me into her home. We lived in their basement apartment, I have no idea how that happened because we had already not worked together for a few years when we moved in. her and harpo were a major part of my children's young lives...a random meeting that changed the course of my life. She was a wonderful person, who had much sorrow in life and bore it with grace. She did not dissolve into bitterness. It is sad to lose our elders and also scary, because I am realizing that I am an elder at this point and I feel so unprepared.

Earlier this year someone once dear to me was killed in a terrorist attack, never in my wildest imagination would i have believed that terrorism would directly effect the people that I love. It has made me feel a deep sadness for the stream of humanity that are so filled with hate they feel no mercy for innocent people that fall in their path. It seems that the world might be a better place without religion.

I learned that my dad has terminal camcer. I am part of a large blended family. For 20 years we have been geographically located nearest my husbands family . All these years, my dad and I have both been raising families. I started early and he, late. Neither one of us made it a priority to visit. We did of course over the years visit but it wasn't a priority. Now with his passing looking to come sooner that later, I am filled with regret. It's too late now to make up for lost time, to have holiday memories to carry with me after he is gone. I know he loves me and he knows that I love him. There is no doubt or fear of that. It is simply the time doing nothing together, talking about things that are over my head because he is so smart, laughing about dumb stuff, inside jokes, and so on. It is simply to late and I am so sorry now.

Helping Alice through childbirth and early parenthood has felt great. After Anna was born, I was feeling really good about myself as a parent and wanting to use that skill by having more babies. After talking with Morgan, I realized that wasn't really a good fit for what I want out of the rest of my life. And helping Alice become a parent felt like a really satisfying way to use those skills.

Well, Phil has about finished the work we have set up for this house. We know that within 10 years we will need to evaluate whether we can continue to live here, so it feels good to have it ready to go whenever we need to go. The girls have started to mention children. I figure that within five years we should know where we are going with that. So we seem to be moving on into the next phase of our life.

I earned more money, which is a nice thing, but we didn't plan accordingly so we owed the government money. This wouldn't have been a problem if my brother-in-law hadn't been our CPA. He was too busy to complete our taxes so he filed an extension. But that only cost us time and money because we didn't know we needed to change our withholdings until it was too late to do so in a way that would have a positive effect on this year's taxes. So we'll owe again next year. Doing business with family can sometimes land you in a hole. Lesson learned.

My son Logan turned 20. I no longer have a teenager. My children are both now real adults. I am fortunate that they both still see me as someone to turn to for advice and support. I hope we continue to have a close relationship as they continue on their life journeys.

Both my sister and I have moved out of our family home this year. I didn't move very far, but she has moved across the country. I know that she has been having a tough time, and it's been hard to watch her go through that. I am hoping that things will either improve for her there, or that she will find a better place to work and live... I feel a little guilty about pushing her so hard to go and take advantage of this opportunity.

Our daughter was diagnosed with in-situ breast cancer and this impacted the entire family and we waited to hear the definitive diagnosis. This issue was all-consuming, mostly because of waiting, sometimes unnecessarily, while doctors did not respond appropriately

We have gone through a whole year transitioning to Messianic Judaism. The newness has worn off particularly for my wife and proves to be difficult. It is difficult watching her in her struggles. Lord help me to be kind and assist her in this trying time.

I went to a wedding with my 2 sons, 29 and 26; the first of their peers married. It was a gift for my children to have me reflected back to them through the experience and memories of their childhood friends. My younger son thanked me for being his mom. I am blessed that my sons will talk about feelings and gratitude; this was a unique opportunity. I got to watch them navigate socially. They bought their first suits. (Millennials...) They demonstrated responsibility; the older was a designated driver for the "after party." He reflected on alcohol use...

My father has survived another year and is 93. His situation has brought my brother and I closer as we have turned to each other to resolve issues financial and other.

This past year my Khaleh Mahvash passed away. She is the person I was closest to whom I've lost. It made death a very real thing. I don't think I knew what loss was. To truly not be able to see or know someone anymore. Nathan also moved away for college at Cal last month and it's been really interesting so far. He's holding up well, he's also never called/texted me this much. It's exciting!

We got the kid baptized. At the time, we were shaky on our religious beliefs. We went to church every Sunday, and every Sunday she would have a meltdown because she couldn't have the "cookie" or because she'd been left in nursery while her friends were taken to receive. So we had her baptized. The baptism rite is beautiful. First, the parents and godparents promise to do these massive things with God's help, then the congregation renew their baptismal vows by promising the same enormous things, with God's help. After she was baptized, the kid was horribly disappointed by communion wafers, and I don't think she's received communion since. Next year, they will start doing communion in their school chapel service, and I think she might be old enough by then not to ask for a communion wafer with seasoning or chocolate. I'd like to say that this had some profound effect on me, but it didn't. It had a social effect, I think of bringing our family more fully into the church instead of lurking on the sidelines as "that family who comes to 11:10 with the little blond girl" (or worse, "that little blond girl who sobs about wanting to be baptized").

When my twins came back from their last year at camp, they seemed to be 3 years older. They are now entering 10th grade. Instead of the sulky pre-teens I had a year or so ago, I now have young adults in my family. They are thoughtful, self-directed, somewhat reflective, funny, occasionally helpful. For me, it is a joy, but there is a twinge of bittersweet. Nothing makes me feel older than to realize I have young adult children. Now I have fewer excuses for the life decisions I have postponed while I was a working mom. Now, I don't have childcare as an excuse. Once again, I have to figure out who I am and what I need to do next.

My brother bought his first house which means he lives closer to me and I can see my nephew more often. I am excited to watch my nephew grow and develop.

My dad finally went back to work after not being able to for years. Although this is a big transition for him, he seems happy with his coworkers and his environment, and I'm happy for him too.

Our beloved fifteen year old cat Calvin died. My father had to put him down the day my mother moved from the hospital to rehab after a total knee replacement; my mom said his grief was so deep that she didn't hear from him for 24 hours. Calvin was our fuzzy buddy, a constant talker and a sweet friendly boy. My brother and I would carry him in our arms on his back - not a natural thing for cats to like, but he enjoyed it. I miss Calvin fiercely, even though I no longer live with my parents. His brother Hobbes has changed - he is anxious and has taken up crying whenever my father leaves the house. There was no cat quite like Calvin. His death reminds me that I am an adult - the pet of my teen years is no longer there - and of the responsibilities that come with caring for another life. I have been working to adopt an 8 year old cat named Poppy . The thought of having to make such a hard decision for her sake fills me with dread and awe - it reminds me of the Mary Oliver poem, "In Blackwater Woods": To live in this world you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go.

My sister and brother-in-law renewed their wedding vows. At first I was like, "What's the big deal?" but the ceremony was so beautiful! They had gone through some really rocky times, even living apart, and had come through to a place where they'd faced their own demons, and were able to do the personal growth required to recommit to each other. It was so deeply moving to see people make that promise to each other, not with the naivete of youth, but with the wisdom of age-- they know what this commitment is, and they are prepared to do the work. AND to share their vulnerability with family and friends. Beautiful! To me it's a model of the resilience of human relationships of all kinds if we can be honest and vulnerable about our own limitations, and with each other about the same.

Last Thanksgiving Mom hurt her back while sweeping snow. She was house bound for six months. Deb and I spent several weeks spending the night at her house and met with countless therapists and doctors. Really nothing that could be done except to wait for it to heal. Mom was unable to return to the gym and grocery shop for herself. She had someone come in three times a week to help for a few hours. I would go over to her house 2-3 time a week for dinner. She loved the Salisbury steaks on Thursday. Once I got busy with business in the summer months I was not going to see her as often. Actually, not at all. This year has reminded me of the inevitable. Do I feel guilt for not seeing Mom? Of course. But I just can't seem to change it.

Dan's aging process has become much more difficult for him, thus for me. I am concentrating on tending him with caring patience yet there are times he sinks into himself and is unreachable. I empathize and will do better for him, the very best I am able to do.

My daughter began in senior year of high school and is working her way through college applications. My sons finished their last year of being campers - so suddenly I have 3 high schoolers. And I think I'm still quite young - though I find it hard to fathom that my parents were younger than me at this stage in life. I often reflect if this is where I expected to be - 22 years into a job, family of 5, a dog, a house, (hearing David Byrne of Talking Heads singing to me). But sitting in services on RH gave me perspective that truly I'm surrounded by blessings. So not one singular event, but a series that have sort of blown me away.

My dad had surgery for the first time in a long time. He has severe Crohn's disease. It hasn't been easy. His whole personality is different because of it and it makes me very anxious. He's been trough so much and it really hurts. It also honestly is a huge pain for me. I don't want to feel obligated to take care of him. It scares me. Am I a bad daughter?

Moving to Minnesota was such a great choice, we are in a much better place in all areas, Logan has a great school, we have so much more support with Logan, good friends, great jobs, and we have learned what we need and what we want and how to discern the two.

The biggest change in our family was the loss of LibbyJean. She leaves a big hole, but she was getting so sick, it was a relief to have her out of pain and suffering. I have not really grieved yet.

I don't have much family. Near me, I'm only close to my son. The biggest milestone was facilitating my son's choice of college. I took him to New York City twice—the first time to visit NYU before he applied, and the second time to visit after he was accepted. I offered my opinions in a restrained and moderate way so he could make the decision on his own and live with it comfortably for the rest of his life. I also met all the deadlines for financial aid applications, bought almost all the stuff he needed to move into the residence hall, and then helped him move, just the two of us. Since he has been gone, I've had some grief. He and I have always been super-close, so I've walked a fine line between allowing him on the one hand the space and time he needs to adjust to his new living situation, and on the other asking about his progress. He chose to go to a school close to home, and we've established a rhythm of hanging out about once a week. We eat sushi, and I listen to his developing ideas about his studies and his future. He has thanked me more than once for my tolerance and patience in listening, and I'm so grateful that we have remained close throughout my split from his father. ... From childbirth onward, parenthood is a continuing separation; but in these spaces, new intimacy and understanding can develop. The process asks me constantly to accept what needs to happen, what's happening, and to allow myself to express my feelings, if only with myself.

This year has been especially busy for me since enrolling at IIN and starting Holistic Happening. But I did call an IVF specialist finally to start the process of having a family with Ryan. We have been together almost 10 years, and married for almost 4 and we both really want a family together. By calling the IVF specialist, it set into motion the possibilities of having this family. It is also very scary because starting a family and a business at the same time is not usually the smartest idea. I do not want starting a family to limit me in furthering my career, but I don't want my career to prevent me from having a family. Every day I wake up more and more confused about what I want, but for now I just made the appointment and there is no reason to make any assumptions until we see the doctor in January.

My mother, with my brother's help moved without telling me. It was (and is) my desperate wish to participate in family life with them, and it would have saved my life to get back to America and make a fresh start with the feeling that I am wanted, needed, and useful. However, they decided to keep me in exile, even though I begged for help, and to help. I want nothing more then to benefit from the love and closeness that only family can provide, but it looks like I am alone with this depression for as many days as I have left.

I think the biggest milestone that affected my family this year as the birth of my niece Margot. While she isn't the first niece or nephew or even the first child of one of my siblings. She is the first child born after the great schism of 2015. I would have hoped that her birth would have brought the family together or helped heal, but rather she marked another lost moment in my family and the unhealthy nature of what has happened since the schism. While I don't think it hurt me in any particular way, it makes me sad. I wish my family would heal and this was another point of proof that the healing has not occurred.

My niece was born

My grandfather passed away. It was a shock to me. All of my life he has been a pillar of strength and now he is gone. Even though I did not see him everyday the strength that he gave me and the example that he set for me help me and help me in my life. He showed me how to be a man, how to face adversity and move beyond it. Most importantly he showed me how to love unconditionally. He will be forever missed.

My 2 brothers & I reached the point where we have to figure out how to support the VT house my mom left us. Jon is not interested in putting money into it, Andy & I want to keep it at least 10 years. I realize I am most concerned about reaching an amicable decision and not dividing the family.

C started hormone treatments this past year, and changed her name. There were some bureaucratic hassles, naturally. It is also difficult to not "out" C to her grandmother or her uncle, etc., by properly using her pronouns. I get mixed reactions from people I share with, but most people are supportive of me being supportive. I worry, though. C has never as far as I know had sex, and now she may not ever have an orgasm with someone. As a sex-positive feminist, I struggle with that. It is a shame we have to make life decisions without fully experiencing it first, but it is always the case on some level, and the earlier C does this, the more profound its effect. It also means "my genes" are at a dead end, but I have plenty of nieces and nephews and some of them are procreating (but not very many, actually.) All of this is a concern, but none of it trumps C's right to self-identify and make decisions for her own body.

Darien graduated High School and started college, as well as getting engaged to be engaged. It has been crazy and stressful and often I felt like I was going to kill him before we get through this whole thing. 6 weeks into the college year I am a little calmer but now I am depressed that whenever asked how school is Darien vehemently tells everyone how much it sucks and how much he hates it. I had hoped he would gain some sort of perspective on education and not just do it because I'm making him do it. There is still time for this to happen but it's just disheartening and it makes me wonder if he'll actually complete it.

My oldest Daughter and I have become more friendly towards each other. Maybe it is because I have accepted the fact that we can agree to disagree on issues and yet still talk. I have also made an effort to communicate with all my girls once a week regardless of what I am doing. I say hi, and wish them a good week. I will never win father of the year awards but I am trying and learning how to try harder.

Our youngest daughter graduated high school and went 1000 miles away to college. This was much more difficult than I thought it would be...mainly because we still feel "new" in the city where we moved two years ago. My husband and I are trying to figure out our new normal...which will be challenging, scary, fun, interesting and will stretch us...which is what we want. It's a blessing that we can look at our lives as kind of a blank slate and paint what we choose.

My daughter went to sleep away camp for the first time. She was very excited until the last few days leading up to leaving, then she was very nervous. My wife was also very nervous and we really struggled as a family until drop off day. The day after drop off, my wife was back to normal and she and I had a week to ourselves for the first time in 8 years. We really enjoyed the time and made the best of it. My daughter came home with a new perspective on being away from home.

This is we have faced major illness with our elderly relatives. Also two deaths with the same relatives. It weighs heavily on me. Trying to balance taking care of the old while also allowing the new (my kids) their best opportunity and a childhood. Sometimes it feels like being stuck in a morass. Everytime you try and go forward something drags you back into the past. Highly motivated to get my stuff in order to spare my kids this same thing. Sigh. One day at a time. I feel as if the only time I will get to rest is when I die.

Giving the final date to move back home was a major milestone with the family. I think we're all excited to regroup after a decade apart.

I turned 60 this year. That sounds old to me, and I don't feel old, so I have been wrestling with what it means to have reached this point in my life, especially since it doesn't feel like I have accomplished that much.

My father died. It has been such a blessing. And I really don't feel bad about that at all.

A major milestone this year in our family is Shayna learning how to drive. This is a big step towards her independence and getting ready to launch. She was anxious at first but now loves to drive and wants to drive everywhere. I know it's going to be hard for me when she drives on her own because I will worry constantly about her safety. I love our time together in the car but I know this is a huge step for her and our family as she enters adulthood. Our baby is growing up.

Having all three kids in the States is a major change, not sure if you would consider it a milestone. Ariel finished college and Ben officially opened his garage door business. Yael finished the army and moved to the States. Alot of ends and beginnings. In actuality, I am doing pretty well with all these transitions. I have David, I have an amazing network of friends and I have a new job. I wonder, did the universe send me these things just when I needed them? Did I create all this as Beth would say? Or both? So I hold all of this, while I also hold something incredibly empty and missing and lonely and different than the past three decades of raising my children and having a husband, and alot of loss, alot of loss.

We got a puppy 3 days ago. That has been real fun so far and a great learning experience for our son. Our son got ear tubes at the beginning of the year (for the second time) and they have worked wonders with his health. Having a non sick child has made us more active as a family and gotten us in a good grove.

I have been blessed with a loving relationship and a gift of trusting the love. Because of this, I am more generous with love for others.

This year we tried without success to get pregnant. I don't know if it is threat or something else, but I feel more like middle age. I no longer identify with youth culture, and am ok about that. Gramma also was diagnosed with cancer. Despite how old she is, it us the first time I really understood that she won't be here much longer.

My father started a new job at a Taiwanese company and, frankly, it had been very bad for our family dynamic. He is traveling all time again, and away from my mother because he lives in Taiwan while she is in Beijing. Thankfully, it had brought my mother and I closer and my brother had more onus to care for my mother. However, it has negatively impacted my relationship with him. He prioritized work over us my whole life and he is doing the same thing again. It is clear in his actions towards us and it is opening old wounds. As a child, I thought he worked so hard to provide for us but, now that is no longer necessary, I am seeing him for who he really is: a workaholic who craves external recognition more than familial closeness and love. It's a sad juxtaposition to my 10Q last year where I wished to be closer to him. Currently, I'm feeling very indifferent towards him.

HUGE Milestone.. Tandy and Tim got MARRIED!!!! Super wedding here in California - he's fantastic! They're so very, very happy. Chi Chi passed away. Major loss to our family. I flew out to visit Tandy for a weekend and we had a wonderful time in Houston. They did adopt a new dog, Roscoe and I guess he's a good dog, but it's not the same, which is why I'll never own a dog! Michelle and Barak also adopted a dog they named Serenity. We doggie-sat for a few weeks while they were in the process of moving. Just re-affirmed my conviction that I'm NOT a "dog" person, or any pet for that matter. Barak applied for and got a new job as the Assistant Director at URJ 6 Points Sci-Tech Academy in New Jersey...so that's where they needed to move in August. Michelle applied for and got a new job with the Women of Reform Judaism - Operations Manager in NYC!! Which is AWESOME and I'm so very proud of her! New year, new jobs, new apartment... really thrilled for them, but it's really hard for the "empty nest" Robin/Raven that I am, even with internet communications, it's not the same....but the important thing is that they're happy and successful and we'll see each other once a year or so I guess, but won't be sharing the holidays, Jewish or otherwise the way we used to and I'm trying not to feel so alone, but holidays, our December birthday and the rest are going to be really really difficult for me this year!

We are very hopeful that the major life changing event will happen.

Last child married and two more grandbabies on the way. I am now less tethered to worried-mommy feelings and am gaining confidence that the kids will make their own decisions and lives independent of me. A wonderful freedom!

This past year, my younger brothers graduated and entered college. I'm very proud of them, but at the same time I'm starting to realize how little I've put into my relationships with them over the last few years while they were at home. I'm feeling a little uncertain about these relationships now, but I'm hoping that I'll be able to continue spending time regularly with the brother that's at MSU with me, and get myself to start calling my brothers at U of M regularly.

My brother-in-law committed suicide. It was terrible. Everyone in his circle, including me, felt there was something more we could have done to nurture him and prevent it. But he wasn't sleeping, and I personally think that was the biggest factor in his behavior, which seemed to everyone completely out of character -- it was never something he talked about, though we knew he was very worried about his new franchise business. When his girlfriend called us hysterically crying with the news, we dropped everything and were on a plane in 3 hours. That really had me wondering why we weren't all able to do that the previous day. What if we had had some kind of love intervention? Would it have staved this off only temporarily, or would we have found a healthy solution together? We'll never know. It also struck me profoundly that everything can change in an instant, and everything does, ultimately. This death helped connect my family and my husband's family -- we're closer now, and I'm more aware of the blessings I have while I have them. Sometimes we believe the 'normal' we're currently experiencing will just go on indefinitely. But in a second, everything can shift to a completely new baseline reality.

My son has just graduated from grad school and is in the process of applying to med school. For a while there it looked like we were going to have to provide some additional funding to him until he found an interim job; a challenge as I am heading into retirement and a fixed income. He got his act together pretty quickly and had multiple job offers within a couple of months. Now he has a good paying and interesting job that he can use as a spring board to med school if he chooses to pursue that goal. My wife and I am very proud of him.

My mom began serving as the president of our temple. This has not affected me as much as it has affected my brother and dad who all live under the same roof. My mom is home less frequently and is constantly answering phone calls and emails. However, it has had an impact on me in that I am so proud of my mom for her hard work and dedication to this position.

Family members struggle recovering from an injury: it's been a massive part of my daily life. The biggest impact; having a heart breaking insight to the demons that rise in others at their most critical point. My reactions in life have always been important. This year more than ever, one small reaction dictated the mind set and wellbeing of my family member. Not a day went by where the roller coaster of giving up to unrivaled motivation stopped. Being apart of something so intense out side of your self is the ultimate mirror to your personal character. I've been granted the opportunity to truly see myself in the shadow of another's darkness. It's been a challenging year for us, but the personal gains have enriched us for life.

Major milestone: The death of my father in law. I think this has decreased a lot of stress in my family and allowed us to make more independent decisions.

The death of my mother changed all of us. There is no other way to put it. After she died, I had to look around and realize that, after two years of fighting illness and jumping from freelance gig to contract job and then back again, that I felt like I had nothing. That's not a good feeling. I had to sit back and evaluate my life — what do I want? What should I go for? In a way, this is good, but I'm still frightened for the future anyway.

In April my cat died. I never experienced death like that

My half-sister moved to Portland from the Bay Area. It's nice to finally connect with her and develop and rapport. But she's alone, so I'm often trying to think of fun things for us to do, which cuts into the quiet times I need to be creative.

I have a daughter now, which was a lifelong dream. I can't think of anything more transformational than that.

Mommy and Daddy moved down to Ashburn, VA on July 14, 2016. That was a pretty big milestone. It means the whole Stein family is within a 45 minute driving radius. It's been so long since we didn't have the NJ Turnpike separating us. The drive kept getting worse and worse. Now, we can talk in the morning and get together for dinner in the evening. I mean, we have to worry about rush hour traffic on the Beltway, but really that can be avoided with some advance planning. And when I say advance planning I really mean within the same day. It is really so nice to have them so close again. I've missed that.

Jesse has moved from public high school to private high school for kids who learn differently due to his ADHD, and the learning challenges it presented . I was very torn about this decision, as it meant he would not have the performing arts opportunities he would at Cheltenham. Also taking him away from his friends, he school is a long train ride, etc. However, it seems to be working out now. Jesse is enjoying it, meeting new people. It seems like it was the right move, as of now, because also we don't argue about homework because he gets enough and the right kind of help at school.

Divorce has codified for me who are the people that show up for me in my life. My sisters, my kid, my girlfriends, my community. Though I feel lonely, this milestone has shown me that I am loved and if I let them, the people that love me will walk to the ends of the earth for me.

There have been a lot of transitions this year for me and my family. My mom died at the end of 2014, and many things happened this year I wish she had been a part: my sister got married; my son started high school; we finished our house remodel (she really hated our old dated house; she would've loved our new kitchen!). So I'm learning how to appreciate these milestones even if they bring up sadness for me.

My sister got engaged! She and her fiancé have been together for 10 years off & on and have a 4 year old together. He asked for our father's permission before he passed away and we were all waiting for years for him to finally do it. This affects me because it is my sister's happiness and that means more to me than anything in the world. It is a positive in the midst of crud that was my 2016. :)

Major to me-I paid off my car! I am relaxed because I have a lot less financial pressure.

It's been a year since Mom had her strokes. I find that I am more reserved about HOPE in general. I get my hopes up that she'll recover, then I'm disappointed. At work, I find myself hoping that there will be smooth sailing, but again I'm disappointed. I hope that hubby will be successful in his new business, but as time moves forward, it's harder and harder to maintain - because I'm not seeing results. I think the most difficult thing for me is that I can come up with solutions to the problems that affect those around me, but I have no power to implement them. The decisions or lack of action on the part of others affects ME and I can't make anyone else do anything about it. Ain't my circus.

We've continued to move forward as a family and individuals with another stress filled year: Jon's mom passing, moving his parents out here, a layoff and new job for Jon (with insane work hours), friendship changes for our daughter, a life threatening diagnosis for me, teenagerhood for our son. Where do I begin in terms of major milestone with all that? Once again I'm just grateful we're making it through intact! I try to remember that there are calmer years. It feels like it's been a while since we've had one but it's reassuring to think that they exist. I know we don't remember them as well but I would be grateful to have one again now; one of those periods where everyone is just going about their business and learning and growing without major upheaval. I'm so worn out. I know some is my illness but it's hard after years of major life stresses to not be exhausted. I see so many women who have their shit together and who have the energy to manage it all and keep themselves fit and healthy and I wonder what the hell is wrong with me. I keep hoping that getting the tumor out of my neck really will be the magic bullet so many claim it is but I read other people's posts in my groups and so many are still battling symptoms years out from their surgeries. Is it wrong to want to feel successful?

Marriage of my sister, babies. Great celebration and many moments of love. Saw family 4 times this year. Made me desire it more for myself. Being with family is always an opportunity to give, and in that a big blessing too.

Aviya was born. I was happy, new babies are a blessing. But I was also sad. One more milestone taken away from me. I was supposed to have the first grandchild, now that's gone.

My oldest daughter married in April,2016. It was among the happiest days of my life. My two other daughters and the rest of my family and friends shared in our overwhelming happiness on this day.

Major Milestones: We get through a year of without Bob firsts. Sam applies, gets into and leaves for college. Ellie loses her shit and then gets it back together - or at least starts to. Ditto me. I am asked to apply for a job (imagine). I go on dates and sleep with some people (I don't know if these are major milestones). It's been a busy year. For a person who is not always so keen on change, at least the world doesn't seem like it is spinning quite so hard these days. I think I have discovered that I am more flexible and like adventure more than I ever thought. I might not be happy but I do feel alive.

We are expecting our 2nd baby and have really grown together as a married couple. I am so proud of us and the hard work we have put in to save our marriage which was quite fragile last year.

The ALS of my husband and his death. My trip to my second Country, my visit alone to the Spa without my husband for the first time. My cat that wnet off 8 zimes in 2 months But to come back to the question, I'm proud of having been able to overcome it all, a move, a death, my job, all of that but I think I am slowly burnt out...

Arbitration. It's over, it's done. Just have to wait for the judge to rule.

I celebrated 1 year of being a Jew and 2 years staying away from my toxic family, who would still rather talk to the man who raped their child instead of talking to the child themself. I did good.

We had no real major milestones, but definitely some small ones that have had positive effects. A new grandchild was born. My husband quit smoking and lost weight. One of our children began an apprenticeship program. All told it was a pretty good year!

My family went from being 2 individuals who happened to be married to a true family with a child. It has rocked our world bringing untold joy; however it's also been fraught with the strain involved in child rearing. My husband and I no longer spend much quality time together. When we do, we're exhausted and disconnected from each other. We need to make a shift to bring joy and love back into our lives, but neither of us quite know how to make it happen.

My dad finally gained LPR status and I was able to take him to Mexico so that he could see his parents. The last time that he saw them was in 1998. I visit my grandparents every December, but it was great it finally be able to take him to visit his parents and show him how much his town has changed. My father immigrated from Mexico in search of a better life. He now has three children (one who graduated from college, one who is applying to college, and one who is a sophomore in high school with hopes of going to college). He built his small business and has bought his family a house. Not once have I seen my father take a day off. He has worked hard and I believe that whoever works hard, follow the laws (including taxation laws), and does not commit any crimes should be allowed to live normally. I understand that he immigrated here illegally, but there is not clear pathway to gain entry into the US. There are pathways, but they are not clear and are not built to help those who need it the most...those in poverty. His only "crime" was that he did not have that piece of paper....but after petitioning for him, he was able to get it.

My brother died. It wasn't completely unexpected, and yet still was. It was horrible and tragic and is still haunting. He was it. My only sibling. I feel unmoored without him. It has hurt his daughters tremendously. Not something they will ever completely get over. As with all family deaths, my mother started speaking to me again and is slightly kinder. His death (and her part in it) has hit her hard. A blow I really don't want to soften because I hold her partially responsible. John was always the person to call me when someone died, not this time. The image of him laying dead, cold and alone on his apartment floor still haunts me. I have the same disease he (and our father) died from. I am old than both of them will ever be. What do you call that? Survivor's guilt? It will one year on Oct 10th. Hopefully when I read this next year this annaversary will be less painful.

My Sister when to college. Out of my family, she was totally the closest to me. It was weird that I couldn't see her whenever I wanted too, but all-in-all, It was just weird noyt having my best friend around

My son has been in remission for one and a half years. I am grateful, but apprehensive that we are not quite out of the woods yet. I want to focus on living in the moment. As I reflect on last year, I spent too much time on the what if's instead of what is, but it is a process I had to go through & still progress through. I have gone from being completely dysfunctional, on the brink of a nervous breakdown to working three jobs, one being my life long passion & my dream I made come true, playing music, going to the gym, trying to make the most of family time, although there is much to heal & be had in that department, and knowing who my true friends are.

My sister finishing grad school this summer has been a big one. I feel everything so strongly on her behalf. I watched her meet a boy she's probably going to marry, get screwed over in the job interview process, move back to the city and become a part of my everyday life again, and start to once again go after what she wants with full force has been emotional for me. Hoping to develop more of a relationship with her boyfriend, having her be my maid of honor. My sister has had the most change this year and that impacts me because I need her to be happy for my own happiness.

Ofcourse, my brother Ethan's death after being diagnosed with Leukemia and dying two weeks later. It has made me less happy and more subdued in general. It also brought brought out some feelings and differences between me and Susie that we worked through in therapy. I was able to see the world and experiences as being perceived differently depending on who is seeing them. This has made me a better and more compassionate listerner.

It was two years since my daughter-in-laws suicide and with time, it has been easier to move past the bad memories. When I see my son moving on with his life, my grandson growing up, the hurt and anger is gone and only a lingering sadness remains. I no longer go to a support group, new memories have overlaid past holidays and birthdays and while we will never forget, peace and change is more than possible.

Milestone... I don't know. My family seems atypical sometimes when I look at other people's families. The biggest event is one I'm not even sure about. My mom is only 63 (64 in November) but is showing possible signs of Alzheimer's. I'll be visiting her in a week and a half to check things out and have difficult conversations. It's scary to me and frustrating too, because mom has never taken care of herself. Everything is an excuse, everything is outside forces and apologies... she's always talked herself down and said how stupid she was. Also no one in the family is financially stable enough to care for her. What the hell do we do then? That umbrella of "can't" from mom's defeatist self-talk really weighed heavily on me for a long time and it was far into adulthood before I even realized it was there. So maybe that train of thought leads to another milestone (what is your definition even?): I got on stage. For real, solo, sharing my jokes that came from my brain and got laughs. I did it twice. I need to do it more. I need to do it more. I need to do it more. I need to FAIL onstage, then keep on getting up and doing it more. Because I'm actually pretty fucking good at my dreams, mom, and your fear of not being successful/having no security in the livelihood I've wanted since I was a child and never let go of? yeah, that fear is unwarranted. And misplaced; my office job is unsatisfying, never gave me a raise, and is incredibly insecure. I'm getting fucking canned because I'm a fucking contractor. Love, James Joyce's School of Word Barf

Sylvia started kindergarten. I am very proud of her, and it is exciting now that she is learning to read!

My third child graduating high school and going to UNR and living in the dorms is a big adjustment for me. I miss her so much. I love going to sleep knowing my kids are safely sleeping upstairs. That is a big adjustment for me.

I always knew my little sister was different, I have a kid of my own who is only 8 months younger, but he seems a lot older than her. This year we were able to put a name to that difference, Williams Syndrome. I think that my father has finally accepted that my sister needs to go to a special school. And the whole family has to learn more about the Syndrome and how to stimulate her instead of causing damage.

In the past year, my parents set dates for their retirements. This means that we have the last holiday season at the house I grew up in scheduled. My brother and I are going to have to say good-bye to that house. I'll probably be a wreck when the time comes, but I do know it is looming on the horizon. It is bittersweet, really. My parents want to move on to a new phase of their lives where they can live out their retirement dreams and enjoy themselves. Particularly since they've become a bit disillusioned with their jobs over the past few years, it is a welcome release. On the other hand, that house and my hometown have been part of my life for more than 25 years. I was a child there, I had my first pet there, my first pet died there. I had chickenpox there, birthdays, sleepovers, everything. I can't expect my parents to stay where they are, since they have a dream of hiking and skiing in Colorado for the rest of their lives (or as long as their knees hold out), but it will be sad to say goodbye.

We have two new grandchildren just two months apart. We now have four precious grandchildren, two boys. And two girls. It just goes to show, there is always more than enough love and joy to spread around,

The loss of my father caused me to reflect on my upbringing and how my life led me to this place, I am dedicated to becoming a better man in all areas

I decided to go to Istanbul / to continue this endeavor, despite their distinct and repeated wishes that I not. Tough, but deepens my commitment to myself / my path in the world.

Eve went to college. My greatest struggle is with feeling like I'm not her mom anymore, like that part of my life is just gone. Rationally I know that isn't true, of course, but as she navigates the difficult "I want you, but not too much" balance it has been hard to recognize that I still get to experience the joys of being a mom, just in a new way. I feel like I finally experienced what I never had growing up -- unconditional support and a safe base in my family -- only to have it end. Learning that it doesn't end, just changes, has been hard.

hmmmm......everyone is trying to sell their house? we are (thankfully) all healthy.

The birth of my 7th grandchild, Zachary. Enhanced our family's relationships

My sister Diane passed in August, and my sister Melody was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. I feel very sad, and can see that my family will be gone in a few years. I think back on memories of my childhood with my brother and sisters, and don't want to let go of the concept of "family", even tho I haven't been close to any of them since marriage. We all live so far apart, and our families are so different. There is a sense of finality that is difficult for me to cope with. I have started reading the Dali Lama, and hope to find solace in his message.

We got married! While nothing in our relationship has really changed, it means we are at the stage where we can begin to expand our family.

I turned 40. I've never been much concerned with aging, but this really affected me. Maybe because I assumed it wouldn't. I'm still moving forward, but I've had fairly frequent bouts of anxiety and sleepless nights. I've never feared death, I've feared not being done. I realize now one is never done and that perhaps is actually a very intense fear of death. My life has never and will have a normal path. School, job, family, career promotions, retirement. Upon crossing 40 I've now really been forced to adjust my thinking, what does it mean to be an adult without the mile markers most people measure their lives by?

I can't think of a major family-related milestone in the past year. I suppose it was wonderful to see members of my core family several times: Thanksgiving, Christmas/New Years, JoCo, Commencement, and here and there over the summer. It is truly heart warming to live within driving distance of my dad and my husband's parents, because we can see them much more frequently and spontaneously than before.

We bought a new house! wow! We are now remodeling it, just a 24/7 train of change but I would say for the better!

Major Milestone--My daughter started college. I learned to live basically alone; I adjusted to her having a life, I learned to not bail her out every time that she needed something. I also learned how hard it is for to be so socially isolated--when she was home, I had someone to talk to and someone talking to me. In addition, I had to cope with my husband's mental illness, which is extremely difficult to handle without having my daughter home as a buffer. He generally refuses to speak to me (part of his package of disorders), so I can go days and even weeks at a time without live human social interactions at home. Either seems to keep himself in check a bit more when she's around (but not always), or he makes efforts to be out of the house as much as possible, staying out "at work" until the middle of the night and sometimes leaving as early in the morning as possible so that he's out of the house before we come downstairs. Eventually, she'll graduate and move out on her own and I'll be stuck living in this situation...But for now, at least there will be school breaks.

I don't think there was a major milestone, just a bunch of small ones that, when put together, mark a shift in the family dynamics. It's just me and my mom and she's been having a few health issues, which have discouraged her because, as she says, she's "not young and strong anymore." There have been a few times when I have had to be the caregiver, which makes both of us uncomfortable. It's forced me to think about what I will have to do once she's gone, even though it tears me up to even think about it because once she's gone, I'll be alone.

My son started reading very recently which has really brought a lot of joy and excitement to our house. We weren't working on reading. It just sort of happened. And he works so hard at sounding out the letters and gets this proud little smile when he figures a word out.

My son, who has ADHD and possible sensory disorder, entered the first grade. His progress from where he was in pre-school, and then where he was in Kindergarten to where he is today fills me with joy and wonder and pride. I am so proud of how far he has come--- and excited about all the places he has and will go

My husband turned 50 this year. Given how ill he has been over the last five years, it was a huge milestone.

Micaiah graduated from high school and just started college at UCSB. The first of our grandchildren to leave home and start the next part of her life. Two generations down are maturing; we're the elders left to tell our stories.

My brother having another baby, #4. More time and attention being directed towards him and his family.

My sister is dealing with addiction. My mom is ill. It has drastically effected relationships. We are broken. This does not, however, impact my day to day life as both of them are toxic people and I've cut them out of my life. My son is improving, but that continues to be an issue we face every day. He has SEVERE anxiety. School is terrible for him.

I turned 75 years old. No one in my immediate family has lived past 74. It makes me feel blessed and cherish each day.

Several milestones, actually. After years of yearning, working hard and two application attempts, my daughter started medical school. This has been her dream for so long-since she was 12 or 13 everything she has done has been oriented toward this goal-that it seemed surreal when we first learned she had been accepted. My son graduated from college, something we could have never envisioned four years earlier when he graduated from high school only because he was a good kid and the principal like him. He had no college to go to, no plans, no future it seemed. Somewhere he summoned the ability to turn his life around, and now he's taking a year off before starting graduate school, which is to be paid for through a fellowship he sought out and was awarded, and he has a plan for his future. In the middle of all this joy we all suffered through the demise and ultimately the death of my wife's mother, who came to stay with us after being diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. It was a long and truly difficult four months for my wife, who provided 99% of her mother's care during this period, but at the end we were all able to be around her when she passed. This events rekindled the joy in my life. I still fight my own health issues that sometimes make daily life uncomfortable and even difficult at times, but my life is filled with such depth and richness; even my mother in law's death was an event that strengthened my self-awareness.

Our son ( our youngest child) and his wife became parents to the sweetest baby boy. This is our sixth grandchild...but each one has been, and continues to be, a singular joy in our lives! The baby was named for my mother, who passed away two years ago, which also makes him especially dear to me.

No milestones come to mind. That's part of my heartbreak of autism: the rites of passage, the small achievements neuro-typical kids experience- are absent, for the most part. And when a hard-won goal is met, it is often followed by a regression, a sad undoing. On the other hand, small victories come with a joy that normal families may not understand: "He hugged his brother today, without hitting him," or "He asked for an apple." I wasn't surprised that autism broke my heart, I just didn't know that a broken heart keeps on breaking.

The visit of our daughter with her "man" and our grandson. It has gone some way to getting perspective * on all the HELL of last year at his birth and the behaviour of this SICK man (with all his mental problems and behaviours), *on my feelings of worry about my daughter's safety and sanity *on the positive experience - from preparing their living space to the actual visit itself Taking anti-anxiety meds was very helpful. As well as being a learning experience with such a thing. I know I can do it (and stop it too) and the results are only positive. I do not have to suffer or live under constant stress. I have a solution

My parents finally confronted my siblings about how they had been bullying me emotionally and verbally for years. Because of this, my relationships with my siblings have been vastly improved and I feel like I have siblings more like everyone else now. There are still some barriers, but it is a huge improvement.

Our baby turned one, like millions of other babies. Small difference is we have four boys under eight years old. So, we are now done having kids. The focus has changed to raising kids. Anyone can have kids, the stress is raising four children into four hard working, kind, respectful men. I value hard work, but I also put a great deal of emphasis into treating others kindly. I would be a failure if a son is wildly successful but is disrespectful of women, minorities, elderly. Kindness...truly...trumps...all.

Ive seen a variation of this answer from somebody else. Im still grieving the loss of my so-called family and I would call that a milestone, that Im coming to grips with this profound truth--that these people masqueraded as family my entire life and had no interest in knowing or caring for me. Im a grown man now and I dont feel sorry for myself, its really about them and their issues of stunted growth, anger and who knows what. This all came to a head as my mother started to pass away and though she has a lot to do with their feelings toward me, ultimately they have to take responsibility for their behavior. And ultimately I have to accept that family is not necessarily something I am born to but something I create.

Max started kindergarten and Sam started two days a week preschool. I CAN BREATHE. For a few hours a week, I can do things by myself. I got my hair cut for the first time in years, instead of me chopping at it. I went shopping by myself. It is so nice.

The sudden death of my mother put us all into shock at first and was very difficult! If one can pull goodness from death beyond the "going on to a better place"...I can say, My mother's death brought my family closer together than ever before. <3

My dad has now been in America for 50 years after leaving Cuba

For my immediate family, it is has actually be a fairly quite year...there have been no major birthdays, no births, and, thankfully, no injuries/illnesses/deaths. Thus, no major milestones. Outside of my immediate family, my youngest cousin has gotten married, marking the final transition of all of the "kids" in my extended family into adulthood. We are all aging, having children, getting older, and even beginning to think and plan for things like retirement and caring for our children. It is interesting how thoughts like these tend to just creep up on you, and before you know it, you're researching assisted living facilities on Google. Time...it's insidious!

Our oldest daughter turned 16 and got her driver's license. Wow! What a milestone for all of us. A few hours after she passed the test, she drove herself to an event at her high school. I called my spouse and said that I was feeling obsolete and irrelevant, ha ha. Here's to raising independent young adults!

Their really isn't one for me to think of their kinda basic

There is no specific milestone but I can say it's a conglomerate rather. My wife and I at early hours of this year made a list of things we would want to achieve this year which the total cost was even more than our combine earnings. Surprisingly as I am writing now we we almost done in achieving them all. It affect me personally when I look back and see how plans can work out through he'd work, prayer and posstive thinking even when it seems all old.

Since I have already mentioned my divorce, I will add here the completion of our son's house and his move to it in February. I think he is very happy there. It feels good to him to have a place to call his own, though he and his father co-own it. He's paying his dad the cost of the mortgage and a monthly amount to cover insurance and property taxes. I played a major role in its design and oversaw the entire building, permitting, and furnishing processes, and I am proud of my work. Now, I live alone for the first time in my life and it turns out that I like it very much. I adopted a puppy in May, so he is my constant companion. We're pretty good friends.

Corey, who has Aspergers, has now lived in his own apartment for a year. It was scary for both of us. Me, because I had always been solely responsible for him. Him, because he was unsure if he could do it. We took the leap. We are still close, but Corey has matured and grown in a way I could not have predicted. I learned to let go. For the first time in my life, I am experiencing mature adulthood like my peers. No.more guilt if I am away to long. More spontaneity. Corey - well, he's crafted a good life for himself, and he keeps busy. But the biggest thing is that I am realizin that he will be okay when I am no longer here. You can't imagine what a relief that is.

My uncle passed away this spring. I had not seen him or my aunt in 15 years, but he was a wonderful person. Other than this my family is static. I would say stagnant. I sadly don't harbor much hope for good family change...we as a group are not blessed with normalcy or happiness or cleanliness...I predict future downturns and problems. Wow that is not uplifting.

Baby! All about baby this year! This affected me in many ways, but HOW REMARKABLE that once a woman has a baby, she becomes invisible to her mother in law - who also believe that it is HER baby. Eye roll.

My mother is in an assisted living facility nearby and my brother and sister live away. They visit and stay at my place and I enjoy having them. My mother is in good shape for 92 but has shown some decline so she needs more help from the staff with daily tasks. I should visit more often and I know I will starting January when I retire.

My parents had their 40th wedding anniversary in September. While I made an effort to reach out and try to do something with them, they didn't celebrate it (or my mom said my dad didn't want to do anything or even greet her "happy anniversary"). I didn't try nearly hard enough to plan something with them or meet them. I didn't even speak to my dad that day. Perhaps what's most troubling about it all is how not disappointed I was or how not guilty I felt. Perhaps it has something to do with knowing they're not in love and haven't been for quite some time.

The Shafers haven't experieced a milestone this year, I don't think. The only one might be my getting my Aufenthaltserlaubnis to stay in Germany.

My parents got a divorce this past summer and that changed my whole life, I had to change in ways I necessarily didn't want to change in, and do things I didn't want to do and make hard decisions I would rather avoid. But over all It has made me a stronger person and I realized things about myself that I didn't know

My daughter and I moved in with my new husband and step-son. We love the boys and are enjoying being a family. Our wedding was perfect. Our honeymoon was perfect. Living together has a steep learning curve though. We girls like to do quiet things like read. The boys are loud and play. We miss the sunshine and windows of our old house but we love the fun of being part of a family. I love being close to the river trail. The dog is happier. We have fantastic in-laws now who just moved to town. All in all, it's a lot of positive change.

The only family milestone we experienced this past year is still only a "maybe". I became a grandmother for the first time ... but that isn't a definite because there are multiple possible fathers. My son's girlfriend moved in with us last July, when it was discovered that she was pregnant. I was prepared to support them while they attend college, to give them a good start in life. But a couple months before the birth, all sorts of details came to light that cast doubt on the entire situation. Ten days before the birth, the mother left to go to the mall and never returned. She had moved in with one of the other possible fathers. Seven months later, we are still waiting for her to do a paternity test, and if this child is my son's, we are missing being a part of her infancy. If my son isn't the father, then we went through a whole lot of drama for no reason (other than to teach him a valuable lesson about relationships). After being excited about becoming a grandma, I am very disappointed with how this has developed. But after seeing how the mother and her family have behaved, I am hopeful that my son is not the genetic father, so we can walk away and pretend none of this ever happened.

Within the last year I've dealt with the passing of my mother, I've moved into a new house my boyfriend, he freaked out out shortly after and broke up with me, shattering my heart. He asked me back after a month, I came back, and and I've started school again. It's affected me in that I've I've learned how I handle different types of loss, expecting my mothers passing to affect me the same or similarly to that of the passing of my father. Learning to realize there's never a true security in anyone but myself, and allowing that to be ok, you can trust someone fully and still know that they have faults and to forgive them when they do things you never thought possible. Trusting myself yet again to have the courage to accomplish something I didn't once before (school)

My father turned 80 in May. His father lived to the age of 60 something; I was 3 when my Grandfather died so I have no firm recollection. My father's mother on the other hand lived until I was 35. I have many fond memories of her. At 55, I still have both parents. As time moves, with each passing day, month, year, I am more aware of my parents aging. I'm ever mindful of what a blessing I have been given to be in the family I was born into. I dread the time of the inevitable but know that in some ways only today counts. I must make the best of each day.

My parents moved from my New English hometown to a new place deep in North Carolina. I realistically don't know when I'll see them again (although I'm sure I will, just not exactly under what circumstances or timeline). I'd previously seen them on regular trips home to the Northeast, where I have lifelong roots and deep friendships. It was convenient to see them on these itineraries -- and I had plenty of other reasons to enjoy my time back home as well. But now that my parents live in an area that I have no connection to, it's made me realize how little I'm actually motivated to see only them. This makes me sad. I should want to see my family. I know that one day I will regret not having spent more time in their company. But I also do not always enjoy their company as much as I enjoy the company of so many others. I wish that my parents would visit me in the Northwest as a compromise. I've lived here for 4 years, and they've never made an effort to come out once and see where I live, or what I do. They are retired and have infinite time -- while I work, and have a handful of vacation days a year. But yet. I go on vacations. I have PTO. I'm not destitute. I just don't prioritize my relationship with them, because it's not always been a happy one. I feel vaguely guilty, but to be honest -- not guilty enough to change, yet.

My sister and I got married within seven weeks of each other. We both did very small ceremonies. In the back of my head, I wonder if family members older than me judge my sister and me because we didn't do traditional weddings, but to be honest I don't care because it's what we wanted.

Does getting a new solar system put in count as a major milestone? Investing in our home/property is significant to our family, for sure! Having a system that is reliable and can power all our lights and other systems is amazing! We've started talking about getting a washer and dryer for the house, which was not possible with our old solar system. The ways this has opened doors to possible conveniences is lovely.

My mom died. It released a lot of fear that I had inside of me - binding me up. It is still working its way out. It feels like I woke up from a nightmare and am still getting used to the idea that I am in a safe place.

My dad was offered early retirement and he took it. He has worked at the company for 36 years. Seems weird how abruptly 36 years of insanely hard and dedicated work ends. He's selling the house and moving 8 hours north. I'm happy for him. Ha has wanted to leave San Diego for over a decade. I feel bad that I'm worried about the safety net I'm losing. But it's good for him so I'm happy.

My in laws finally pulled the trigger on moving to a senior living facility. It has been a tremendous relief to everyone. It has also given me an opportunity to think about what it means to age gracefully. My father in law, especially, resisted the move even though he started the process. He is deathly afraid of aging, and since there is no alternative to aging other than death, this is a problem. I hope that as I grow older I can recognize when I need to make changes and do it with grace and dignity.

My mother's death. I wrote about this in my previous answer becus this was without question "major." I won't repeat the details about my mother's Alzheimer's and the long and painful worsening of her condition, or her death. But sadly, with mom's passing my so-called "family" has become undone. I have an older sister I have not spoken to since the funeral 10 months ago. I can't bring myself to talk to her becus she walked away and refused to be involved when my mother became ill. So not only did she abandon my mother during a time of great need, she dropped the ball in my lap. There was a lot to do, from my mother's day to day health concerns to emptying out my mother's condo and getting it sold, dealing with all the bills, power of attorney and, finally acting ass executor of her estate. Sister has never bothered to explain herself so aside from my knowing she held a big (unstated) grudge against my mother for divorcing my father, umm, 50 years ago, I don't know how she could be so cruel. Apparently she never felt it important enough to work out with my mother, and I know my sister's irritable, short-tempered and cold behavior over the years pained my mother a great deal. Now my sister is repeating the non-involvement behavior with me, her only sibling. That leaves just my father, who I am very close to and see regularly, and 2 half brothers and a cousin out of state. I can't imagine how I will cope when my father dies. It was very painful and lonely getting thru the holidays last year, and I dread the holidays this year for the same reason. 83-yr-old Dad has gotten in the habit of going on a deer hunting trip with a bunch of guys (and my sister's SO) on Thanksgiving weekend, so he's not around, and i believe he had Christmas at my sister's last year. I stayed home by myself. I spent last Easter with a close friend's family, but I can't expect to do that every year. Neither my sister nor i ever married, because there was a lot of s*** that happened in our childhoods. So we both remained single, without kids, and I'm not even dating now. If I could fast forward from about late October to January and skip over the holidays, I would.

My cousin got married. My grandma only has 4 grandkids - two no married and another just got engaged. There was a lot of drama about travel to the wedding. My family is so small - maybe that's why it's so closed off - to protect itself? New people are not admitted easily or frequently. Prior to this weeding was mine - 8 years ago. Prior to that was my uncle's 10 years earlier. The fact that these sibling cousins will have their weddings within 6 months of each other is a little unexpected. I don't know if my other uncle will attend the upcoming wedding - I think he'll have to to accompany my 93-year-old grandmother, but he wouldn't come on his own. These things affect me because I don't understand the drama. This year, I spoke kindly, but frankly, with my uncle and grandmother. I have decided that I will never again stay at my uncle's house - he has made it clear that while he doesn't hate us, he doesn't enjoy having people stay at his home. My uncle never talks to his brother or brother's family. I'm certain he never will again after my grandma dies. That hurts my mom, but she is also not very close with her brothers. I guess I'm tired of the weird very passive-aggressive ways that they hurt each other. For me, sometimes it's worth it to be blunt - at least we all know where we stand.

my family has been dealing with the suicide of my brother, its been over a year now it's been hard but it made my parents realize how serious mental illness and addiction are, that one can't just will them selves better it's been a thing

Chase and I decided to get have an official marriage ceremony in front of our friends and family. I am not really sure. I think it was good for our son. I think it was good for our extending family, and probably us. I don't know...:(

My family has been great I can't complain. I love them and am thankful and blessed that they are doing just fine.

My husband and I have started the process to do foster care. We are looking forward to expanding our family and potentially adopting a child who cannot be reunified with their birth family. This is both exciting and terrifying.

My mom had a bad fall, probably whiplash and spent the better part of May through July in a wheelchair and rehab, including an operation on her neck. She's always been impatient and we've been expecting something like this to happen since she's been shakier in the last years and refused to use her walker in the house. She's still in a wheelchair, though she's made amazing progress. It was tough. It was so difficult that I can't really explain it. I know a lot of it is because despite her age, I still think of my mother as young, beautiful and active. No longer. And then there's her attitude, which has been all over the place, from blithely unconcerned to deeply depressed (and taking it out on those around her which is the part that makes me craziest). And yet, I adore her. Whatever bad behavior she exhibits, I am so deeply tied to her that thinking about this threatens tears. I should also say that there were ripples through the whole family, with everyone in attendance on her at one time or another. I had the biggest fight with one of my brothers that I've had since we were teenagers and found my other brother to be a source of steadiness and sanity. My eldest son is trying very hard to avoid "I told you so" mode. Etc. In any case, it threw me. It threw all of us, even though we all saw it coming.

Earlier this year my brother had a heart attack, it was mild, but the event made a great impact on me. It was a clear and poignant reminder to live every moment and every day as if it were my last. It reminded me to stay more closely connected with my family and to remind them that I love them, just because. I am on a journey to become more authentic and true to who I am, each milestone in my life whether with family or mine alone, are powerful teachers to help me.

CJ attended his first sleep away camp. I got a week vacation w Nancy. Forced a lot of growing up. I realized that I can be more than a mom and I'm entitled to be happy too.

Back at my answer to Day 1. my ex-husband's death was a milestone, not because I still loved him, but because of the affect he still has on my sons. For me, it has been, and continues to be, an opportunity for completion and dealing with my own emotions. As the unveiling approaches and I see my sons using limited resources to fly across the country to honor someone with whom they had deep conflict, I still have to deal with some resentment.

My daughter and her fiance set the date for their wedding (Feb. 14, 2017). She finally landed a wonderful job, and they also bought a house and moved out. My son also moved out, but isn't doing quite as well. I do worry about him.

The major milestone for me has been moving back home - to Illinois and into my parents house. Sometimes I feel shame that I'm 39 years old and living "at home," but it's turned out to be a good bridge back to Illinois and a way to recoup and save money. The economy has changed so many people's living arrangements and options. On one hand, having the day to day companionship & counsel of family and people to do things with has done me a world of emotional good. On the other hand, I miss my autonomy & independence, and I really want a home and family of my own. Ideally, that family would include both my own family and my parents nearby. That is the vision I had for my life. I am one step closer to that and am keeping in mind that it's better to go in the right direction slowly than the wrong direction quickly.

Mom retired about this time last year. She and dad are both much happier and able to do whatever they want ans care for their mothers. I've liked how often I see them in Baltimore for lunch and wouldn't mind doing it even more often.

We bought a cafe and my brother moved out to Berkeley. I became a business woman and found who I am and how to strengthen my skills at life and business. I also got close to my dad in the process then recently saw how I am also very different from my dad after coming back from Life is Beautiful Festival. Nathan was like the ball of love and energy and excitement in the house and now he's creating who he really is in college. All this has had me grow the most in the past year and I know I will grow even more in the next coming year.

Five days before Rosh Hashanah we were able to moving into our new home. I had to work each day since I am a resident chaplain at the local hospital before moving day. And the 2 days leading up to new year. The emotions of the transition left me wandering and in settled. It was sweet to have a new home but the preparation left us with everything in boxes. It felt more like Passover than the hope of a new year. My wife helped me with compassion and I was the recipient of so much love. It was the hope which sustained me through this year.

Henry broke his wrist. It was the first time one of our kids broke a bone (or was seriously injured at all really). There was some logistical disruption - had to shuffle schedules and figure out how to spend our time differently. I also think it impacted us psychologically/emotionally. You feel somewhat helpless. I'm not a big fan of feeling helpless. We're still getting back up to full speed now that the cast is off, and so I don't fully know the entire long-term impact (if any) that the event will have.

My eldest child got married. It was one of the best days of my life to see her so happy and my wife so happy. It ranks right up there with the births of my 3 children as the absolute highlights of my life.

The last year has been nothing but milestones. My grandmother died, my husband turned 40, my father was diagnosed with cancer. Also, my husband and I relocated from Scotland (his birthplace) to Texas (mine). The benefit of the move is that we are much closer to my family parents at a time when they really need me. By living close by, I got to visit my grandmother once before her death and give her eulogy at the memorial. I have been able to attend some medical appointments with my dad and support my mom. Everyone, myself included, feels that our move was a good thing. However, I ache for Scotland. I miss my friends there, my husband's Scottish family, and my coworkers with their heavy Doric accents and no-nonsense attitudes. I miss the landscape too. We lived near the sea and got to drive along the rocky coastline every day. I could go to the beach any time I was feeling anxious and let the waves carry away my stress and worry. We explored ruined castles and ancient stone circles, and I felt more alive than ever. The Scottish landscape lit my soul on fire. And I mourn the loss of those beloved places as much as I grieve for the absence of friends and family.

My divorce has been easier on the family then I expected. My boyfriend has been accepted by my parents which was a huge shock to me. It is nice to be able to go places as a family.

I am so selfish that I really can't think about major milestones for anyone else - Oy!

I moved out from my parents' house. I now live in Russia, half around the world away from my family. I think it was for the best. I never got along with them, and hopefully some distance will bring us closer. Perhaps not.

My godmother died: My godmother was a force in my life. She was an amazing example of someone who lived life as she wished. She was also someone I was always trying to impress, keep up appearances to. She was the person against whom I held down a certain pretentious, something-to-prove corner of my personality. Her death has helped me to let go of some of that, though I do know that she would have preferred that I let go of it while she was alive. I was too scared to be totally real with her. Separation: My husband and I are going to separate for a month, what will really work out to three months because of the timing and a trip I am taking, or more, this year. Perhaps divorce. The whole process of working through the problems in our marriage, each of us embarking on a path of self discovery, and him dealing with anxiety and depression, all to get to this place, has been life changing. Opened up for me the work of a lifetime. Has gutted me with sadness and heartbreak and anger. Has opened me up to a beautiful world where those feelings are manageable and welcome in my life.

My boys are growing up. Sam turned 17 in January and Matt turned 19 in April. Matt is now of age and secured his drivers licence. He also moved into a three bedroom apartment in Oakville with two of his classmates. Sam broke up with his girl friend, maintained a heavy duty work out regime and also started a local basketball summer program. I am very proud of my boys and also feeling sad that time is rushing by so quickly. I feel like these young men just came into this world and now they are leaving the nest! I am happy for them and a bit sad and lonely for me. I am not sure how Steve feels at the moment. He seems to be busy with his work and volunteer initiatives. I need to keep keeping busy too!

Our oldest daughter went off to public middle school, in our high-poverty district. At first, I was completely terrified - for her emotional well-being, for her physical safety. But after the first day she came home somehow 85% transformed into her college self. It's been amazing to watch. She's always been a verbally mature kid, but now she's developing a real weight to her words and thoughts, as well as an ability to advocate for herself and help others. I love my big kid so much. She is really an amazing person. I've been walking around with a total sense of awe and gratitude.

My daughters and I visited my parents for summer vacation this year. This was a milestone because my daughters had never visited before and I had not visited both my parents in their home in 16 years. My father had previously been unwilling to "be involved," as he put it, with my girls due to their being African American. (My children are both adopted and I am white.) This shift in perspective and resulting visit affected me very deeply on an emotional level. I feel that my heart was opened and I was able to let got a many years' worth of angst and sadness. It was powerful for me to watch my children interacting with my father and to begin to develop a relationship with him. Additionally, this affected in a very powerful and positive way my relationship with my mother. While she has been regular in coming to visit us in our home, I think it was very meaningful for her to have her granddaughters in *her* home. I felt that I was once again a part of my family of origin in a way that I had not been in many years. This left me with a sense of grounding and confidence in myself that I did not previously feel. This also affected my feelings about myself as a parent. I am proud of how I have raised my daughters (on my own following the death of my husband 8 1/2 years ago). I no longer feel the need to have the approval of men in authority, including my father. While we have very different ideas about how children should be and be raised, I am more comfortable that I have and am doing that in the way that fits most closely to who I am and what I would like to impart as a parent and world citizen.

The major milestone that my family experienced was the death of my husbands best friend. It was not unexpected but no less devastating. It has caused me to think a lot about beginnings and endings as I am trying to come to terms with this loss.

Well, my whole family started going back to church. Last Sunday we all went together. Then, we went out to breakfast afterwards. I got to see my cousin and her husband there too and eat with them afterwards. It felt really good. Family. Being together.

My sister finally had enough of her husband's bullshit. After years of their relationship growing steadily worse, disintegrating into a prototypical 3-year divorce rate statistic, Natalie finally decided enough was enough. I'm proud of her for finally deciding that she is worth more than the pittance of negative attention Justin was giving her. I had been feeling more and more like she was becoming a shell of herself; losing her natural good nature and self-confidence. Since she decided to separate from him, she's enrolled in a full time course, gotten a great job, and met new people. She's taken ownership of her path and this re-discovered confidence has made her stronger and happier. It looks as though her firm stance on the separation is paying off for her; her husband has discovered the steel that runs through her and has begun to seek out counselling and taken on more responsibility to take care of their kids and shared home. He now knows that he could actually lose her, where before he took advantage of her good nature to mistreat her emotionally. I hope for her to continue her path of discovery and passion with or without him!

I honestly can't think of a single thing-which is actually a relief! We've had sooooo much negative stuff over a long period of time, it's nice to have a quiet year!

I have attempted to find out what I did "wrong" in my family of origin. Not one child or sibling will give me an answer. My emails go unanswered. What I did was to stand up for myself and no longer accept their abuse. I have been told that if I apologize (for what?) then I will be re-accepted into the family. I am so sad. I have no family to love or comfort or support me.

Last year, it was getting our own place. This year, maybe settling into our house? Getting a dog! That's been a big one. And you know, I've had my resistance. Resented the commitment, and how energetic and hyper Milly is. But man, my heart is growing large for this dog. She just jumped up on the couch next to me because I looked at her. She stays close when we walk, runs off, then comes back and walks with her head right next to my hand. She loved backpacking, bumping up against us with her red saddle bags. And yesterday when I was having a really hard time, she was right there. As I cried at the marina, she let me pull her into my lap. My medium-sized dog. I already loved her, but having her there when I felt so sad, today my appreciation and love for her is even deeper. Cassy says she loves Milly as much as she loves me. I think she may have even said more then other day. And that's OK. My daughter has a sister-stuffed animal-friend-pet-companion. So while she adds limits to our life, and makes it harder for me and Mitch, she's mostly a gift. Building a lot more love in our little family.

Bryan and the kids moving in! I already touched on this, but I'm excited to have a family to be a part of. It's always been my dream.

I turned 60; took Mom to Israel; she will turn 90, G-d willing, in December. I have always had difficulty with the passage of time so these particular milestones are making me especially depressed.

Loads has happened in the past year. I think that although getting married was a big deal family wise, actually, other things have affected me more. My father in law has been ill and had an operation. He has then refused to eat and look after himself afterwards. He is only in his mid-sixties. Seeing this grown man behave like a child and the way it has affected my husband has really been hard to witness. I am much more direct and brutally honest with my family, so sitting by and holding my tongue has been really difficult. Ultimately I cannot solve the emotional issues between my husband and his family, no matter how much I wish I could speak my true mind.

My daughter and her husband have begun the bewildering process of pre-IVF procedures. I wish with all my heart that they would be happily surprised without having to go through all the strange, sometimes painful, and expensive rigamarole. They've had a happy marriage and a happy life together (living abroad, well employed, lots of friends, a house they love), but this seems so unfair to me. My husband and I got pregnant twice so easily! Hoping that this time next year they'll have a child.

no major milestones this past year

Bis got married! Not everyone in the family loved Ari initially, but I like him more the more I spend time with him. Which is obviously a good thing! She sort of sparked the conversation, in some ways, for David and I to get serious about Nina and Courtney, respectively. It is a little surprising that she is the first in the family to get married, but I wish her nothing but happiness. I think she will find it with Ari, someone who challenges her in a way that none of her past boyfriends have. Hopefully she can grow as well.

Our daughter took a position in New Mexico and is now 2000 miles away from us. I miss her each and every day but we do keep in touch mostly by texts. I am absolutely certainly this was the right move for her. I feel it will be a stepping stone in her career ladder and the next position or two will get her a lot closer to the East coast. She is thriving and we are so proud.

My brother got divorced, which gave me the opportunity to be supportive and therefore closer to him, if only briefly. My cousin also got divorced and, around the same time, we started spending more time together and becoming friends. She is now helping us buy a house, and her daughters are becoming friends with my girl.

My parents separated and are getting a divorce. It's hard and bringing up a lot of feelings and resentment toward my parents and reflections on how I see relationships. It led me to go back to therapy which I am grateful for. It's probably affecting my current relationship with Brian too. I want to talk about it and get support but then I get anxious and self conscious that I'm being negative and a victim. It's led me to feel sad, really sad, for both of my parents. I feel so much discomfort inside. It's also brought my siblings and me closer and led me to build more personal relationships with other family members. It's definitely been an opportunity to practice being vulnerable and it's led me back to AlAnon. My siblings both graduated from college. I feel pressure to work hard and make more money because I'm comparing myself to them. It's causing anxiety because I'm afraid of not being good enough. We are also all adults now and that seems a little more real since we've all graduated from college at this point. I am so proud of them for each following their path.

My son broke up with his long time partner, and has begun dating someone whose background and culture is very different from mine. Since my son and his new guy were stopped by the police for no reason, my sense of the ultimate fairness of the world has changed. I've become much more sensitive to the way we/I treat others.

My newest grandnephew, born last July to his single mother, moved in a few blocks from me. Now they call up at my 2nd floor window ask me if I want to go to the Park with them, or to the diner, or just to talk. Today I am going to pick him up at day care because his mom is sick. Changes a lot...

My aunt started chemotherapy, lost a lot of weight and has been in a lot of pain and discomfort for much of this year. I only hear about the details through phone calls with my mom. It has made me think more about illness, age, and bodies. One of my very close friends was also diagnosed with cancer this year. These two things together have made me realize that sickness will become a bigger and bigger part of my life as I age and all the people I care about get older too.

This is the first real year my parents have spent in their new house and its just weird. Home isn't "home" anymore, it's my home here in DC and they're at their home. I never realized how much it would affect me, but spending the holidays in a house ive never spent time in before felt awkward and empty. I missed my familiar home and my neighborhood, and the things about the house I grew up in. I'm excited for my parents, but it makes me miss the things that made home really "home." Now I feel a pang of longing whenever people ask me where home is, and I feel like I don't know - where is home? it isn't where they live now, but I guess it's here.

I think the election cycle has been a bit of a milestone. As a young adult forming her own views and opinions of the world, I've started really paying attention to the words and actions of my parents, sisters, aunts, and uncles. I've been forced to decided what's important to me, and how to speak up about it. It's not a single concrete milestone, but a general learning process that's taken place over the last few months.

My parents booked an around-the-world cruise set for next year, to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. While I'm happy for their adventure, which I know will be a great experience, I also worry that they are spending every last cent that they have to do this. I guess I just worry about what happens to them after they get back, but that is their decision. I know that travel is one of the best things in life that we can do for ourselves. They have traveled all over the world and I aspire to do the same.

Dad and Leila moved from Laguna Woods to an assisted living facility in Escondido. So Dad is now 20 minutes away....this can be good or bad....he hasn't worn out his welcome yet, but I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop.

My husband has been battling mental illness for many years. This year he switched to a new medication regimen. It took several months of experimentation with numerous drugs, suffering side effects, etc. It was hard on everyone. although hardest on him, I found myself overly focused on his life and got pretty depressed. We're both much better now.

My wife and I have 4 kids, whom we affectionately refer to as the "big kids" and the "little kids" because of the gap in their ages (20,19,14,11). This fall the big kids both moved away from home to attend University. Our oldest son is little more than an hour from home so we still see him atleast once month, but our oldest daughter moved to the oppsote side of the country (Connecticuit), and will be away for the better part of each year. The house feels a little empty, like we are always waiting for someone to come home. Unlike many of our friends my wife and I have never looked forward to the day when our kids would be out of the house. We love having them there. We have been lucky, the kids have been a breeze to raise; a joy to have. Although less laundry is nice (seriously how many shirts can be worn in a single day :)). We are coming to realize life will never quite be the same. Lazy Sunday afternoons will be fewer and farther between, trips to Disneyland harder to arrange, Christmas days will find someone absent, birthdays will be celebrated over the phone, and I love you's said without a hug and a kiss. I am delighted at the choices and overjoyed at the achievements of our big kids. I love witnessing the good, loving, caring adults they are becoming, however, I miss them. I miss giving them a goodnight kiss, or an "I love you" every morning before I leave for the office. I miss being awakened late at night to hear about a date or the thing that outraged or excited them that day. I miss hearing them laugh together, cry toghether. I miss having a house full of teenagers. Our house always seeming to end up as the gatherng place. I miss them. The little kids are in for an uncomfortable few years, because I am going to be hanging on awfully tight.

We got pregnant! And Ima and Daddy decided not to move to Florida and instead to Jersey! Alon decided to move to Jersey too and got hired at a private practice. Skylar started running and talking.

well Pepa died but I already talked about that so the next one is that I graduated high school! Class of 2016! Woo-hoo! This was a big deal well because society has made it a big deal. It really shouldn't be that big of an accomplishment but it is. It was also kind nice but also hard because of pepa dying. It was nice that the family could all get together for something positive the same year that we had gone through something really tough. But it was really hard walking across the stage to get my diploma and knowing that Pepa wasn't there in person to share that special moment. I say not there in person because I know he was there in spirit and in all of my family members' hearts.

That's pretty easy. Just over one year ago, we had our first baby...a perfect little healthy miracle, my sweet boy. After going through 3 consecutive miscarriages, this was the best gift in the world. I had a healthy pregnancy aside from the anxiety and an unmedicated natural delivery. My life is so different and so wonderful. He is a joy and being a mother is something you can never explain the full depths of. In short, I am BLESSED!

We lost another dog to age and disease. We had to help my brother's rescue dog pass after a year of serious health problems that were only getting worse. I went with my brother and helped him on the day of. We realised, after talking, that one year ago, nearly to the day we also lost my brother's childhood dog and 8 years prior we lost my childhood dog around the same time. This experience and realisation just reaffirmed for us that not only are we dog people, but we keep dogs in our lives for a reason and it is something we'll continue to do.

We moved to the townhouse in Fishkill, away from the apartment in Mount Kisco. I don't know how to get over this intense melancholy that I have. I miss my old town so much. I loved it. The apartment was too small and sizing up in that area was not an option. I know these things. I am trying so hard to find the good things in my new area but I just find myself gripped by these intense feelings of loss. I went to the library in my new town for the first time. It was hard because the old library was the center of everything I loved about my old life. Walking to is took me past everything essential in town (drugstore, grocery, Starbucks lol) and right into the heart of the inessential, "for fun" stores. It was the perfect distance - 3/4 of a mile from the apartment, all through a charming main street with a pedestrian plaza where Sam could run free; then over a bridge that crossed a small creek that we would always stop to throw sticks from. We would eat picnics on the bank of the creek sometimes, if we were looking to kill an afternoon. In the library there was an enormous, lovely children's area with great displays, a massive bead coaster, a lego table, an enormous Babar whose name was one of Sam's first words because we would always say hello and goodbye to him. If we walked past on the library's closed day, we would go peek through the dark windows to wave at Babar. We loved that stupid Babar. There was a fountain in front of the library that we would spend hours playing at, a 9/11 memorial with a little pool, WWI/II memorials that were good for running around, a big pine tree. All of these things were part of the wonderful, simple joy of a slow-paced day with a toddler. On the walk back I would hit the market and get some vegetables for the next couple dinners. I could run out and back within an hour but I could also easily stretch the whole ordeal into three hours of lazy wandering. It was so so so invaluable with a toddler. I knew it and I fought tooth and nail to avoid giving that ease of life up, but it had to go. And so I just could not bear the thought of the new library, but I decided yesterday was the day to put on my biggest smile and go. I had to go to the post office so I figured that even if walking into town was not feasible (due more to road suitability than distance), we could park and just walk AROUND town for a bit. And it just sucks. The entire downtown, which is actually nice and cute, is just fancy restaurants. Nothing "real;" it's not really a town, just a destination. It's one of those towns where everything you actually need is relegated to the strip malls that ring the actual town center. So we went to the post office and walked to the drug store, which meant walking across several vast, mostly-empty strip mall parking lots. Asphalt blight as far as the eye can see. No market or even coffee shop to be seen - that's all on the main road, which is most certainly not Main Street - the main road is where you go for your big-box stores and drive-through coffee places, why would you clutter Main Street with such stuff? Therefore no real way to just linger in town and spend a few hours - no parks or places to grab a quick tea or drugstores to run errands at (without hiking through strip mall hell). All you can really do in town is have an expensive lunch. Which is just about the only thing I am not in the market for, on my wanderings with toddler. The library was a bit more centrally located than the drugstore etc, in the middle of all the restaurants (and nothing else), and that was encouraging. But it was just so sad. Walking in, you are greeted with a bunch of signs about how you're on camera at all times, like, okay, great. It's not a crime-ridden area, actually probably significantly lower crime than my last town, idk wtf. It just had, like, the exact opposite of a welcoming feeling. It's got a musty wet-carpet smell and the children's room is not easy to get to, but rather down a side set of stairs and then through a fire-safe door. My old library opened into a lobby with lounge chairs, where you could just sit and rest or chat or drink coffee or whatever; and branched off into fiction at the right and children's room at the left, like two arms opening wide to embrace you. At this new library, you enter and then you have to find a stairway in the back that looks like an emergency exit, to get down to the children's room; and there is no children's librarian so once the fire door slams shut behind you, you are just alone in this musty basement room filled with books. No merchandising to arrange displays of "theme of the month" books or "if you like X series, try these!" or whatever. Just hundreds of books on shelves. Not a bad collection but honestly you could not easily browse it - you would have to go in knowing what you were looking for or else you'd just drown. They had a ton of toys but it was all crap, like it was as if someone just unloaded their yard sale into the library. A hundred million shitty V-Tech toys with obnoxious sounds, completely mindless toys like that - I mean not that I am anti-electronics in general but it's not really why we come to the library, you know; random things like battery-operated play hair-dryers and other weird things. Nothing as simple and and open-ended and timeless as a Lego table and a massive, unthinkably awesome bead coaster. No changing origami displays, no craft-time decorations on the windows (no windows at all). I thought about the children's librarian in my old town and I just wanted to cry. She was so lovely. She would arrange such thoughtful, effective displays of books for all different ages. She would make charming play themes, like one month she did a "vet center" and she had four stuffed animals in little baskets (aka beds) and a doctor's kit, and she had printed out sheets where you could write down symptoms, tests, actions (like you could say "cat came in with a fever," "took its temperature and gave it a shot," "bandaged its foot" or whatever). Just play displays that were truly engaging and that always had a little on-topic book display near them so that kids could dig in and transition seamlessly from play to reading. Picture books about a trip to the vet, non-fiction elementary-level books on what vets do, Ranger Rick magazines. idk. She knew all the regular kids and recommended things or showed them cool stuff when she thought it was warranted, but also just sat there quietly doing her job - not like she was always in your face or anything. She loved Sam and always said hello to him, and we would see her around town because she would walk to and from the library as well, and go to the same market, and the Starbucks. It was just so nice. At the new library, Sam at first ran around and around saying, "Play Lego? Play Lego?" looking for the Lego table, but eventually he settled in with the pile of mindless electronic toys and pushed button after button and I sat there alone in this dank, musty basement room feeling vaguely like a trespasser in someone's cluttered basement playroom, trying in vain to browse the books, and I just wanted to cry. Just then I saw high up on a shelf, a little Babar stuffed toy. I lifted Sam up and said, "look!" and he said, "Babar!!!" with a mixture of joy and relief. It was not our Babar - our freakishly enormous trophy Babar - but it was A Babar, and it was what we needed. Except it made me want to cry even harder. Last night I dreamed over and over that we were on the bridge over the creek behind the library. Throwing sticks in the creek and rushing to the other side to watch them drift. It was such a happy dream but it was like a nightmare because I kept waking and trying to shake the memory, and drifting off to find myself reluctantly falling into the same dream over and over and over. I am just so sad still and this feels ridiculous. It's been two months. I am such a spoiled, privileged person to sit in a fully-stocked library watching my kid play happily and feel like bursting into tears because it isn't "enough." But I miss everything. I miss having a life that was "enough" even when the home itself was not. I honestly feel like I am legitimately depressed. Everything is so hard. The days that I am at home feel completely endless and trapped. The days that I am at work I feel like a zombie, just barely staving off tears at times (over what? anything, nothing, everything). There is literally nothing I look forward to in my life right now. I love my kid and I love M and I enjoy my job well enough but everything just feels so hard. I miss having small rewards built into my life - getting to walk past the train station and see Sam's face light up just in the course of picking up more toothpaste, any of those stupid little things. It feels like I have to actively seek out and claw my way to any little bit of joy in my life now, and I just don't have the energy. Those tiny bits of joy are not worth the effort they would now require, because they were just tiny little flecks here and there - but they all added up to an overall sense of contentment and gratitude and now there is nothing.

I am not sure yet how I feel about the birth of Mauricio's son, Leon just 4 days ago. It is utterly stunning that this wee guy has the same birthday as I have. I feel unclear about the role I want to play with this regard.

My Grandpa died and they sold the house in Nebraska, the official end of the previous generation. Since he was my mom's step dad, and there had been so much animosity in those last years, I guess it's been a relief. For better or worse, the good years were gone a long time ago. It's made me think about my responsibilities to my parents, and how important it will be to keep a good relationship with my siblings. It's too easy to let your family become strangers.

I think the biggest milestone for us has been the sheer fact that our kids are now somewhat self-sufficient. At 9, 7, and 4, I can take a shower and not worry about what's going to happen. I get to sleep all night (most of the time)! But with this comes more needed patience. I still need to remember that they are children, and that they are not fully-sufficient adults. There are still things that are and are not appropriate for them, and sometimes I need to back off and let them be kids! It's been a great year, but man it's hard work raising responsible and happy kids!

My niece made her bat matizvah. She did a great job, but attending services was a catalyst for my joining a congregation after an abscence of several years.

Well, I've already talked Jane's death up one side and down the other, so let's look elsewhere for this answer, shall we? We joined Judea Reform, and have been over there a minimum of once a week for the last couple of months. Any genetic claim to Judaism comes through Carolyn's family, not mine, and yet this move came from me. So why now? Something has changed for me. In years past, while I respected Judaism, I couldn't see conversion for me. No so much out of rejection of Judaism as out of respect for it. If I was going to convert, it would be because I felt drawn or called to it, not just as a spousal ride along. Judaism, I reasoned, didn't need another secular Jew. So what changed? I'm still working on that question, but here's part of it. In times past I saw the various laws of Judaism as inconvenient, outdated modes of living that were performed because that's what Jews do. No cheeseburgers because Jews aren't allowed to eat mix dairy and meat. How irrational is that? People eat cheeseburgers all the time without ill effect. I was seeing an outward aspect of Judaism and thinking that that's all there was. At some point I came to realize that what I had thought was Judaism might be better thought of as elements of a complex spiritual system, a 'way' in the eastern sense. I'm reaching for an analogy, but let's try this. My mistake is like having gone into a kitchen supply shop and not realized that all these pots and pan and whisks and spoons are really about the one thing isn't visible in the shop - wonderful food.

My father had a heart attack and even though we were scared and upset with him about it, he seemed to be even more scared and upset with himself. It also created a lot of tension and resentment seeing as how he expected me and my mother to help him (because his parents are dead) but he didn't help raise me - he practically ignored his parental responsibilities and when he did contribute he would get extremely aggressive about how much and how long to the point that the help wasn't even wanted any longer.

Getting out of the "angry teenager" with my daughter. I think treating her more as a person who struggles and needs love rather than a naughty child who needs to be disciplined has helped.

Not in my family by blood, but my chosen family - my best friend since I was 7 had her first child. Seeing this little person grow and how she and her husband have changed as parents has been quite a journey.

My parents 56th anniversary......one more year that I had the ability to see them together and watch their love for each other as they grow old

My parents celebrated 50 years of marriage, Rob and I celebrated 25 years and my brother and his wife celebrated 20 years. I have a profound sense of gratefulness for these blessings.

I take on more responsibilities at home w/ kids, HW, etc ... to help support my wife and girls.

I got married! It's affected us all in wonderful ways! Michael is a wonderful addition to our family. He fits right in. I am so happy to be married to him and build a life with him. My friend Kristen also got married. So now all my closest friends except Ashley are married. It's weird and good. I sometimes miss and am always grateful for my singles days. I had a lot of fun with girlfriends. But it's fun to go into this new stage of life together as well. Paula had a baby in June and she's my first close friend to have a child. Everything feels so adult and real now. In a way, I didn't really feel like an adult until I met Michael. Life didn't feel as serious. Now it feels serious, but in a very good way. We're building a life and the decisions we make matter. It feels purposeful, which is what I always wanted.

I feel like I have answered this already. For starters, Mom and Wayne died. During the process of Mom going to the hospital, Diane and Danny reconnected and have remained connected. That's about as major as it gets, I suppose. Diane got a promotion at work and "moved" to South Carolina. She bought Mom's place so she has a "local" address for Cody/Tim. I'm guessing those are the biggest milestones. Other than finding a little more connection with Danny, there hasn't been a lot of effect on me. I send positive thoughts that Diane travels safely as she drives all over the country. I hope Kaiya can transition into an adulthood that she loves. I hope Cody can grow and learn and become a healthy person.

Three milestones. My mother passed away. We moved to our new appartment after 20 years. I sold half my business. This means I am in a different moment of my life. Yet I still dont notice it.

A full year without my father. The beginning of a year without my mother in law. It was a year of grief. We have had each other and we have had joy but more than anything else we have had sadness and stubborness and a willingness to put one foot in front of the other so that we could get through every today and try again tomorrow.

This year we lost my older brother. This was the first loss in our family that was completely unexpected. It has been very hard on us as a whole as we were completely unprepared for it.

In addition to my mother passing away, my son moving into an apartment and out of a college dorm, and my daughter working as an intern camp counselor (leader in training), the biggest milestone is that of my niece finding a way to move out of my brother's house and go back to school and begin a teaching fellowship. This is significant because she is in very poor physical and mental health. Somehow she managed to raise her self-esteem to a place where she could move forward. Our family does not know where she received this help to change her life due to a severe lack of communication. Nevertheless, hopefully, she is on a road to recovery and a better, healthier life. My family is praying for her.

My mother died just over a year ago. Now we are 7 orphans adjusting to life where we're all we've got, so we're learning to value and be there for each other in a new way. It's poignant and sad.

My dad and step-mom sold their place in LA and basically moved to NY. I didn't really think this was going to be a big deal, but the truth is, I miss being close to them for even part of the year. Now, my connection to family is even thinner before. They are all on the other side of the country and I am the lone wolf...of my own making... I have found and made my own family here in LA, but there is something particular about being connected to your actual family and I am sad that it is so difficult to do so...and not just because of the distance. My parents are getting older, so I need to make an effort to see them while we can still do all kinds of things together.

Technically Asher was born just over a year ago, but him coming home and joining the family has been huge. It's exhausting. Two kids are much, MUCH more work than one. I adore this little boy with all my heart, but I have been stretched incredibly thin this year. Worse still, Tara is totally overwhelmed. She's been incredibly strong, but she's constantly depressed, and beats herself up for not being perfect. I wish she could be happier with herself.

I've shared my 12 Step work with my sister. My father has opened up about his prostate cancer somewhat. I continue to have anger about my mother and my childhood; I feel like she was selfish and didn't do nearly enough to save us from a continued cycle of violence for years. I have resentments about this that I continue to work on. And my gift to my family last Christmas was a trip to Lake Tahoe for a week in July. What I've learned from that trip and from being with my family is that I still need to work on my boundaries and what I give and take from each of them--as individuals and as a group. I love them. I like them sometimes. But I don't need to spend great deals of time with them, especially as a group. I hope to continue to sort this out to determine what I want to share with my family and what I don't need to share with them, preserving for myself and maintaining my boundaries.

My youngest daughter drafted into the Israeli army, and failed the course that she really, really wanted. It was a crisis for her and a crisis for myself. Watching her go through that experience and trying to help her cope with the failure and her belief in herself was painful for me. I tried to be as supportive as possible, to give her advice when asked and to not when not. But it was hard. She is doing better now, passed another course, but the two of us have our struggles for other reasons and I hope and pray that we can go back to the close relationship we have enjoyed in the past.

The one that affected me most was mom really trying to quit smoking. It means a lot to me and helps me worry less. It was definitely a driving factor in helping me have the courage to go away for school

My older son finished his first year of college, but had a little too much fun. His grades suffered and I am worried that he may lose his scholarships. He seems to be back on the right track but I want to see radical improvement to be assured that he is really serious

My daughter got married. Issues with her work visa led her to elope in December with her long time boyfriend. It';s made her move to England much more permanent. They are still planning to have a 'wedding' but logistics will make that tough. She seems very happy and he seems to be a good guy and a good match for her so I'm OK with it but it's a long way away. Getting to see her only 1-2xs a year for short periods of time and with me going back to work and being limited by vacation allotments makes it tough.

It was my parents 50th wedding anniversary. We all got together and it was lovely. It makes me happy that they are happy. Has it affected me? I am not sure.

The first major event is that Amber cut off all contact with her family back in March, and hasn't spoken to them since. I think she finally got to the point where she couldn't take the manipulation and the abuse anymore. I'm so proud of her for being able to take that stand. They've not tried contacting, not even her mum, which makes me feel a bit sick. I think I just wanted them to care that she was gone. The second event is that my sister is expecting a baby, which is due in December. We've been rushing around getting bits and pieces ready for her and we can wait to be aunties - it's so exciting.

I'm getting a divorce. I have been shocked at how liberating it was and the stigma I had attached to it. It was hard at first but each day that goes by makes me feel more alive and full of hope. i can live my life any way I want to without expectation of what it should be.

They said they would be ok with me going to Israel for the year. I feel like they trust me a lot more and understand that I have career goals and a direction for my life. I am so happy that they finally see me as a functioning adult, and I am incredibly happy about that.

My grandmother is officially depressed. It makes me so angry, helpless and sad. She won't call me at all anymore, it is harder and harder to talk to her, it makes me so angry with myself that I can barely tolerate her behaviour and how she lets herself go. It makes me angry that she continues to live while she clearly doesn't want to and that I find myself thinking of her as a person from whom I hope to inherit something - something, no matter what, that tells me she noticed I was there in her life. That it's not gonna be like with her sister, who left me nothing at all, though she has had a big impact on my life.

i had a bebe and its everything! fantastic! awesome! tiring! life changing! omg! (but she's awesome! and fantastic! and a handful! and also very lovely!)

There are two milestones. Our fourth grandchild was born and our third grandson began to talk and assert himself. Impact 1 - our son's third child was born and I am more motivated than ever to try to have a more comfortable relationship with him and his family. I spent 10 full days helping out without too much angst but we're still not there yet. These 10 days fuel my fears and anxieties and my hopes for the future. Impact 2 - I am so inspired by my daughter's son who we babysit regularly. He is finding his own identity and asserting himself both physically and verbally. It's a privilege to once-again witness the growth and development of a human being who we have so much love for. Joy, joy, joy!

A lot of my answers will deal with the birth and loss of my son this year. One milestone that happened from this is communication has improved drastically with our whole family. We've discovered new levels of love and connection that will last for a long time. Hopefully this lifetime.

Kids are old enough to stay home alone a for a few hours. That means we can run our for a burger and beer. I love being able to "date" my husband. We try to make it happen twice a month in a Friday.

My brother has become medically compliant with taking his anti psychotic medication. On his birthday he smiled properly. Like really truly. I have a photo of that moment-we are both in the picture. We look genuinely happy. That hadn't happened for years. My brother is still there. That's what matters. He will not be utterly governed by his schizophrenia. This may change but for the moment I can enjoy the laughter, the fun and my brother being my brother.

So many major milestones! I am divorced now and i moved out of the big house to my old little beautiful studio apartment. I am happy and at peace in a way i have never been. Mom and dad went home alone after dad's long illness and they are fine! We were so scared. And yet. They are fine! The love of my life and i worked together. We share a passion for books and management. I got a good job and hired him and it changed our relationship. Our love is big and open and easy.

I changed jobs - something I have done often in my career. I feel lighter, happier and like I am finally doing what I have been striving to do. I have found my vocation.

I learned to really appreciate my mom. I've always had this really tumultuous relationship with her. A lot of what I felt was just fear of becoming her. But I'm not my mom. And what's more, my mom actually has some wonderful qualities that make her amazing. She has an infectious personality. She's soft. She's incredibly kind. She's giving. She delights in pleasing others. She's smart. She hurts. She's human.

Joshy got married to Nina!!!! That was huge. I think we really came together as a family, increased our communication, and put a lot of effort into making it a special time for all. I'm really grateful for the time we shared together - it was extremely joyful! Also I met baby Oliver and that is the best! Also Talia is having a baby soon! So many simchas! I'm happy for Nola that she moved back to NYC and is happier. I'm happy for Michael that he has a new job. I'm happy for Aunt Lo that she has The Girls. And Star is pregnant, Tara had baby Elan, Al and Adele moved to Sac! Jen and Gordon and I met up in Paris! We've all had many simchas this year and getting to be a part of everybody's is the sweetness of life.

It took me longer than I'd like to admit, but I finally worked up the courage to talk to my parents about rabbinical school. I knew they wouldn't be happy about it, because they think religion is BS--worthless bunk that only appeals to the feeble-minded. They don't see the spiritual side of it; they don't understand the call. They only see the pragmatic challenges of leaving an established career and going back to being a "broke graduate student." They don't understand why I would even think about devoting my life's work to what is in their minds a made-up story. These reactions I anticipated, and I got them. However, what I didn't anticipate was that they weren't surprised by my desire to become a rabbi! I am proud of myself for pursuing my path despite my parents' objections, and in a way I'm proud of them for their effort to be supportive anyway.

Milo turned 10...a significant birthday for most kids as they enter the double digits. But also an age where he is enjoying new freedoms, independence and interests. His life is not as connected to mine as it had been. The transition has been more abrupt than any time before now. Moments of closeness and cuddle have become all the more precious and remembered. It is sad to think about as his mother. But so important and necessary.

i'm getting tired of writing about "my" life and have it actually be all about my elderly mother. again. but the truth is, she's on the downward spiral and there is little that my brothers and i can do about it. except be at the nursing home at regular intervals and answer her requests, which is difficult because of the constant complaining about her situation, surroundings and people that serve her (in one of the highest-rated assisted-living places in the state). i regularly pray for patience. my retirement pastimes have fallen by the wayside as i minister to her needs and wants; i try to carve out places in my schedule that is just about fulfilling MY needs and wants. sounds selfish, but it has to be done, for my own sanity.

My brother's separation has been devastating. I've felt so helpless being away from home and unable to help with practical stuff like food and minding the kids, or to give him a big hug. Thinking of what he's been going through has put all my problems into perspective.

The first immediate family milestone was the marriage of my youngest brother; the reality that it is probably the last time my family will convene until we do so for a funeral is sad. Our family dynamic, like so many others is just completely f'ed up and weird. Thankful that I moved away 25 years ago, but still hurts to not be invited to "family" events.

I have been falsely accused, by my estranged son, of some terrible things. It has broken my heart. He now has a 3 month old daughter and I will probably never get to meet this precious child. I purchased a hope chest for her. I made her a baby blanket and I will plant trees in Israel for her for every gift giving occasion until I meet her. This little girl will know that her Bubbe has ALWAYS loved her. I am writing her letters (I started the day I found out she was expected), and sharing family photos with her. One day I pray I will be able to give them to her and let her know that despite the things I have no doubt her parents will say, Bubbe has loved her from the start. The hardest part is she lives less than 5 miles from me :-(

I think the question would depend on "which" family we speak of. My mother and father have been navigating a very uncertain world since 2008 and since the loss of their home. They live in a trailer park and are doing the best they can to make ends meet and continue to work blue collared jobs despite growing older (50s and 60s). I think losing our family dog really set the tone for the last branch of our old home. Her loss was extremely devastating to me and the family. It was like losing a sister. My boyfriend's family has their own milestone for finally and begrudgingly (sometimes) being reunited in the same state. The fact that I'm here to allow that connection makes me a little tighter with his family. This milestone has affected me in that I'm displaced navigating Illinois and doing the best I can. It's a struggle to be far away from my family and really far from my friends. But it has also given me the opportunity to grow and be a part of a new community.

Our son, Spencer, became a bar mitzvah on June 4th. It was a mixed experience. Certainly, we were proud for continuing on the centuries-old tradition and creating a positive occasion for our family, friends, and hopefully for Spencer. However, in many ways the whole experience felt hollow. Firstly, our son has shown relatively little interest in embracing religion from either a mechanical or spiritual standpoint - neither of which are abnormal but his disinterest made me feel like the whole experience was lost on him. Part of that problem is that for a child with ADHD, language acquisition is very difficult and Hebrew's strange symbols is a monumental challenge. Going to a reform synagogue, where immersion in the language trails conservative or orthodox shuls, didn't help with the language. Nonetheless, when after all the years of Hebrew school and bar mitzvah prep our son read everything transliterated from a sheet, it felt as though we had all just put on a show rather than experienced something meaningful, despite our parental efforts. Secondly, the clergy did little to bolster that experience. While the cantor did bi-weekly (and eventually weekly) lessons with him, there was no lesson in teaching the trope...the symbols that govern how to chant, both Torah and haftarah. Spencer felt lost without knowing the trope, but of course, no sprouting teenager would allow his father to teach that to him, even though I could have. The rabbi we had at the time (who has since left when his contract was not renewed) did very little to help our son with his d'var torah as well. I think our son nonetheless got a wee bit more out of writing that speech than any of the robotic rituals he learned. The whole thing felt more like a show for other people than a meaningful experience for him or us. I hate to share those feelings, but despite our regularly attending weekly services ever since our son's arrival home in 2004 and right through today, I don't think any of the bar mitzvah/Jewish experience is going to stay with him one iota when he gets older. That makes me feel empty.

My son, who had been living with us for a year, during a period of unemployment, landed a job and moved out of state. Although he had been gone for several years before, I didn't realize how much I was going to miss him when he left this time.

Me and Lee have moved back in to my family home. It was difficult from the offset as we brought Zuko home with us, and that made Richard unhappy for numerous reasons. Although we are all settling into a routine, things have been tense and caused a lot of arugements between different parties. That makes me feel sad and guilty that I have caused that, but it also makes me angry because I should be able to return from University and feel welcomed into my old home.

I fear I'm being repetitive, but I the big milestones this year were Andy and Grandma's deaths. Both of these events happened, but they still feel like they're happening everyday. These events have sparked a lot of conversations between me, Al, Ben and my friends, mostly about wills/estate planning. Not that we all have so much money, but because we all need to actually take care of this stuff, even though it's not sexy, not fun, not rewarding etc. If Andy and mom had been willing to talk about the absolute worst case scenario, she'd be in a much better place now. I think that's my lesson here-talk about the stuff that actually matters, even if I don't want to.

Several deaths occurred in our family this year. Eric's grandmother died which was very significant for him. He had not spoken to her in years and still bears some emotional scars from her treatment of him. He has solved this yet, hasn't forgiven or moved on, yet he must if he is going to see the beauty of his life. My aunt Kathy died this year from cancer. She was diagnosed right before Thanksgiving and died in March. In truth, I never appreciated her as an aunt until I was much older. I always thought their family odd but when I was older, I really appreciated her more. She became a dedicated vegan in the last years of her life and I really admired her love of animals. A day after she died, my uncle Joe unexpectedly died. This was a complete shock. He shaped my life in so many ways. His mental illness, schizophrenia, was always present. He sometimes terrified me but yet he was a constant presence in our house because of my mother and her unconditional love for her brother. The funerals, held one right after another, reunited the entire family. It was beautiful that we all could be together.

I got a kitten. He is a pistol. I am not sure how I am going to deal with having a kitten that is this rambunctious. Martin has been my go to family.

My brother has a 1 year old child. He is growing into his role as a father and it is absolutely delightful watching him as I don't intend to have children. He is a wonderful, loving, generous man and this is what he was built for. It warms my heart to see him happy and fulfilled and watch my family lineage continue...I will do what I can to support them.

Dude, I was diagnosed with diabetes! Huge bummer, right, but this all came down because I lost my teaching job, which lead to a job search and a new job, which lead to a new doctor, which lead to me being diagnosed and losing weight. Crazy, right? I mean, the tragedy of a job loss lead to me not dying. That's insane and just goes to show.

Our son got his driver's license. And he's looking at colleges. He's a senior in high school. I'm proud, worried, scared (driving!), thankful, and emotionally up and down, depending on the circumstances. Teens are stressful!

All three of the kids are age seven or older, and this has made a huge difference in family life. I'd always heard about how 7 was a threshold, and while of course I'd noticed it with each of my older two, there'd always been one or two still under that threshold. Now, though, all three kids are seven or older—far older, in one case—and the ease at which we can approach almost everything is amazing. Swimming, dining out, travel, bedtime, every part of life is impacted. Things are far less physically tiring. Things are far less mentally taxing on a moment by moment basis, too, freeing up mental space for bigger questions and a little bit of ease and margin. I still have plenty of other issues with which to contend, but having the kids be older makes all of them so much easier and, frankly, enjoyable.

My dad ran for office and lost. I was at camp and it was so sad for me, more sad than when Jake died. He had worked so hard. This was all he wanted and the person he ran against didn't even want it. It makes me so sad to think that he tried his best, he did everything he could, dedicated money and so much time and so so so much effort just to lose. And so that impacted me greatly. But now I know (partially because of intermediate acting) how to manage my feelings better. How to be okay with being sad. And how to be sad. I had never felt sad before.

My mother, now alone after the death of her husband, moved to be closer to my sister and her children. This move at first caused some strife, drama and uncertainty as my sister at the same time decided to take a year-long sabbatical from work and move the family to England. But my mother was fine with this decision as she is happy to get settled into a new city and make new friends without having to look out for the offspring of her daughter. We all worked it out through conversation. Also my niece turned 16, and my aunt turned 81 on the same day. Looks like my Aunt might have cancer in her breast but no one knows yet how bad. My girlfriend is becoming part of my family.

We made a lot of mistakes: Buying the beetle, moving into the house on 11th st, putting the kids into a school half hour away - but we're dealing with all of these and keeping our heads above water. Also, one thing - I worked the bungalows every day for six months straight and will never work a job like that again. First the trains, then the bungalows - no more.

Losing my grandma. It happened fast. Really fast. It was for the best - she didn't like being in the hospital. After a stoke and a heart attack in less than 24 hours, she somehow said, "I have to go." Family, holidays, my parents day to day life, all will be different. My future will be different. I want to be gracious for the time we had together. She was 92. But it feels so off for her to be gone.

All of us met at my former husband's land and semi camped out for a few days. Three kids, three grandkids and harmony reigned.

Wee Mr. Tyr was born, so now I have a nephew. I am charmed and delighted by him, and it's fun to watch what he brings out in my parents and my nieces, as well as my sister. I'm excited to have another small person to borrow and corrupt and to see who he becomes.

My mother in law died. I feel a kind of peace and I am very grateful to have known her. Too bad we don't have kids yet. If we ever get children they will only have one grandfather left...this makes me sad every time I think about it.

It has been a constant and subtle undercurrent in my life. It has taken me a while to recognize it, and I'm still figuring out how to deal with it. I suppose that when it resolves, that will be another milestone, followed by a longer time of dealing with that.

My father's 82nd birthday made me feel more empathetic toward my aging parents. They remain active and interested in life, which is pretty remarkable for their ages. I hope that I'm doing as much and as connected to family and friends when I'm in my 80's. I lost the annoyance I sometimes feel when visiting them and instead felt lucky that they are healthy and still around.

My little brother got engaged. It has made the ocean between family and me feel so much bigger. It has also made me think I could one day want a relationship like he has. I am very proud and excited.

My little sister moved to London, I am happy for her and slightly jealous that she gets to be in a new place that is also very exciting to live in. I will get to visit her so I'm happy about that. My other sister moved in with her boyfriend. Again, I'm happy for her but slightly jealous because I don't have a boyfriend. She will probably get married and have children before I do. I am trying to focus on the fact that if that happens then it is a blessing for everyone in my family.

My sister had a baby. My first thought was my mom, my mom. But there is no mile stone there. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer's almost eight years ago. She stopped walking a year and a half ago. Since then her decline has been slow and steady. But, my sister had a baby. He is decidedly and surprisingly extremely cute. Our family isn't too emotional and not that close distance-wise and heart-wise, but this little one has brought us closer. His softness has softened us, just a bit.

We finished paying a specific debt. This has been liberating and empowering. Knowing you can be disciplined with your actions in order to achieve financial goals. This has been a team effort between my husband and myself, but I definitely thank him for teaching me about financial organization, which I definitely was not in the right path when I met him.

My brother proposed to his girlfriend in December. It's been a vey exciting time in our family getting ready for the wedding, which is taking place in March. It's affected me greatly not just because of my happiness and excitement that my older brother is finally going to be starting his own life and family, but makes me question where I am going in life and what that time will come for me.

The past year was pretty quiet (unlike the year before). I really don't know. We just sort of held it together through consistent minor health issues. It wore us down some (a lot) but otherwise we're fine. I guess calling anything a milestone might be our anniversary. I think my wife and I both realized when we took 36 hours to ourselves how much we need that break from the kids. I've got some plans to that end for next year.

i separated from my wife. officially. it is still soon to have a full answer to this question, but here is what i have so far. it pushed me into some of the most horrific pain i've ever experienced. longing, sorrow, remorse, loneliness, hopelessness, fear, more. i lived through it all. i know i can live through a major rupture disruption destruction and....rebirth. i have become softer and more yielding in some ways. when i remember what i lived through, like just now, i know i am stronger and more resourceful than i thought. i have a better awareness, care for and connection to the younger parts that needed and need me. the parts that were abandoned then and which i continue to abandon now.

I got a boyfriend. That's been kind of amazing, happy, wonderful. It's made me very happy.. For the first time in years I'm part of an us, and have someone for me, who can help me decompress Elliot's 7, and in year 3, he's more grown up and in some ways far more challenging. He's also no longer under the SENCO... I don't know if that's for the best, I still don't know if either of us is NT, but it doesn't really matter. I'm in a place of being at peace with who I am and for the most part who he is. Is nice to not be constantly worried.

It just now a year since my grandmother passed away. She was the matriarch of the family, and kept everyone together. When she died I thought I would start to take her place, especially since I was able to keep everything together for her arrangements. But they are still very bonded without her and I am the one who has distanced myself. I still don't know why but I can't bear to go home. I felt like I grieved. It just doesn't seem to feel like my family the same way anymore. I hope it will pass.

My Holocaust-survivor maternal grandmother turned 90. I was lucky enough to travel to where she lives for her birthday celebration with family, but on one hand it made me realize that we don't have much time with her left and two, she has dementia so 10 minutes after her party, she had no recollection of what we did to celebrate her big milestone, which just makes me sad.

My son entered rehab. He is working and alive, and not in complete recovery. I am grateful for the help and support of his team. I am grateful for him...I look at him now with eyes that feel aware that I don't know how long i'll have him. My daughter moved out, though in anger, I hope this is an important step for her in growing into an amazing adult. I have to learn to accept my own aloneness and to make decisions to have a peaceful and meaningful life.

I became an uncle a few months ago. I never liked babies, especially their crying, but I actually really like my new niece and I'm proud that my brother is a father. I still don't want to become a dad, as I still can't stand babies, but my niece gives me hope for the future. Just don't pull on my beard!

My boys' graduations form high school and college has had me reflecting on change and separation. What do I need for myself through this transition period. What can I give to the boys that is enough for them. How will I be when they are not living in our home? How will my marriage change. I have no answers. Sometimes just knowing the questions will be enough to support the processes. It's a journey. That's all.

I don't think we have had any major milestones this year. Next year we have a 21st and. 16th birthday, they seem pretty special. I guess owning my house outright is a milestone. I realise I don't really think in milestones but enjoy the little things each day. That in itself is a big change for me as I was always such a planner to the extent that I felt I was living two steps ahead of reality and never enjoying the here and now. Here's to being grateful for the little things.

My fourth grandchild, Franklin Diotte Feldner, turned one, Tommy Jon Feldner turned 4, Ashley, 19, completed her freshman year at UW-Madison, fell in love with David, a Junior at UW, and Scott completed his sophomore year in high school. I started collecting SS under Frank's ex-spouse benefit. Still amazed I am old enough to collect SS. Feel I must make a concerted effort to stay in touch with Cere and Peter. Easier when mom was still alive. I miss her a lot. Every day.

I can't really think of any major milestones, good or bad, that happened with my family this year. We've been lucky enough to not experience anything horribly unpleasant (spoken like a true Jew - going to the negative first! :-) )

My eldest son wants to start a family and has asked to rent my home. My dad left me his home when he passed away and I've worked very hard to hold onto this gift. My son asking me I think is a sign of the growth and healing we have been working on for many, many months now. I'm doing my best to accommodate him and the tenants who live there now, trying to be fair to everyone. Without stressing out about timelines and things. I pray this all works out. On the other side of my family, my stepdaughter has made it clear she is not interested in being a part of my family. This has put a terrible strain on my marriage, and I hope we will make it. We are doing marriage counseling. I am very tired though. The same routines are taking a toll. I don't want to have to pay so much money into our home when my family here is unsupportive of me. It feels very unfair, so I'm trying to set boundaries which are healthy for me. I'm worried our marriage will fall apart under the strain. And staying together right now makes me feel like a demanding hag. I'm very tired of that too. I'm hopeful, but not afraid to let go if I need to. That goes for everyone in my life.

Aside from the renovation/addition, there has not been a major milestone. That, however, has been stressful.

My husband and I took our first vacation alone together in many years. It helped me remember how much fun we have together... how great our discussions are... and how much we still have to learn from each other.

My son graduated from college and I graduated from college - a full week before he did. I'm proud of my son, but I didn't attend his graduation. Why? Because I am tired of being rejected my adult son who is, and has been, under the influence of his father who managed to alienate my son from me. Plus, I haven't seen my son in about a year, he won't return my calls, text or emails and he is an adult - 23. If he doesn't want anything to do with me, then now it's on him. I thought I needed to make teshuva with him, but I have tried, so many times. So I let it go, because I have done all I can do. I love him. I want him to be healthy and happy and make good choices. I can no longer live my life beating myself up for divorcing his father and feeling like I somehow deserve to be ignored in such a manner. Now, me graduating from college - YES! It was a long-time coming and it's something that I have long wanted to achieve. But finally getting my degree at 43 wasn't a guarantee of getting a job n- 28 rejections later and I didn't have any hopes in February (graduated in December). I'm so glad that all those rejections came in - it led me to ask people I know for advice and now I am in a new career, with someone actually mentoring me and it's fantastic! I love what I do and look forward to coming in every day. And I help people...really help people achieve home ownership. Literally, it's the best.

My sister had a baby, and it's brought us closer than ever. As usual when she does something first, she's filed away everything I'll need to know, and has saved baby and maternity clothes for me. I know that when it's my turn, she and Mom will be endless sources of knowledge and advice. I also ended therapy this year, which was bittersweet. I feel proud of all of the work I've done to get to that point, but I also definitely have days where I miss my therapist. The whole process was amazing, and I am absolutely convinced that it made me a better everything.

My oldest granddaughter joined the Air force, and I am very glad to see how happy she is.

Dad entered transitional housing. After his arrest and subsequent issues with the landlord, he was asked to leave the home where he was living. Dad chose to go to the VA for assistance and stayed overnight, sleeping in waiting rooms which prompted his placement in a transitional housing center for the homeless. After 6 months, he is still living there. His gambling addiction is persistent and he has been unsuccessful at saving any money to move out, refusing multiple attempts by friends and family to have assistance with his financial affairs. He is running out his stay and will need to find a more permanent solution soon. This is stressful and a lot to bear. It's not easy seeing your parent struggle. It's frustrating knowing that no matter what I do it won't solve his problems. I'm trying to come to terms with the whole situation and with his aging. He is not in great health. This has forced me to consider his mortality, which has been difficult and painful to process.

My mom got divorced, which is the third divorce I've been through with my parents (with my parents divorcing each other counting as a single divorce). I was probably sadder about this divorce than when my parents divorced each other, because I hadn't seen much of my mom's marriage in recent years so I couldn't really see how things had gone wrong. Even though I could see that something was off the last time I visited, it didn't seem like something worth getting divorced over, and I thought they were just in a rocky patch. This really made marriage seem arbitrary and like love is something temporary or unimportant. Before this divorce I was starting to see the benefits of marriage, but now I think that the failure of a marriage is inevitable.

We have a new Rabbi at our synagogue! The vibe is happier and people are nicer to each other and more people are coming to classes and to Services.

My mum was diagnosed with multiple myeloma last December. It's the first time that major illness has hit someone so close to me, and EVERYTHING is now different. I don't feel that I'm doing enough to support my mum (and my dad) but, at the same time, don't know what more I can practically do. I know that my parents aren't going to live forever, but this has really brought it home.

This year I changed. I've come into my own self the way I've been longing to do for so long. I changed even before I left for college. Most people change during their time away at school but this past year I felt different. I experienced a wave of self confidence splashing on top of me. The kind of splash that is refreshing. I went from a girl who was halfway to drowning in self pity and pessimism, to a woman who thrives in optimism and truly enjoys all of life. I've grown into a new set of morals; I've learned to truly appreciate women and just how fearless they really are, I've grown to respect any and every being from plant, to animal, to human. There are so many more values I've come to grow into within this past year and I'm very excited to continue on developing more and more of those values. I'm still so young, time feels so slow right now, so while the age is still playing its' adagio melody, I aspire to gain as many values and experiences as I can. And just by that last sentence shows how much I've changed in just a year.

A major milestone that happened for my direct family is that Jimmy started his freshmen year at UW-Madison. This is a huge milestone for my family. My parents are new empty nesters. It was so hard for me to see my baby brother go away to college, but I have since talked to him since he has moved in and he is absolutely loving it. I was so worried that he would have a hard time adjusting, but after talking with him I know that the opposite is true. I am so so proud of him. A major milestone that happened for my extended family is that my maternal grandmother is getting a divorce and because of that, she has moved up to Wisconsin permanently. She is my grandmother and I lover her dearly, but she is such a burden for my poor mother. I see how stressed out my mother is dealing with the divorce and my needy grandmother that it makes me upset that my mother's siblings aren't helping out. It is hard to see my mother so stressed and upset. I hope that this divorce ends soon because it has been so messy for both my mother and grandmother.

can't really think of any. My family has dwindled and most are retired. kinda sad and probably points to a lonely future

Well, there are really two, and I've already talked about them both. The only other aspect of Laurel's marriage has to do with her future with Joshua, and I have mixed feelings about that dynamic too. I have no doubt that Kate will continue to push me to be more assertive and direct with my family. It may change the way we relate to each other. The unresolved issues around the wedding will remain, and I don't know how that will play out.

Not many life cycle milestones seem to have affected me. The grand boys turning 2 & 4 is wonderful, as is the scope & breadth of their development, but we still play whatever comes to our minds. It is great seeing Lu getting ready to read and I marvel at how adept little kids can be with technology when that is all they know, and Thad's babbling is almost speech! I don't know if Karen's moving us toward better health by going (no SOS) vegan, but it has had a dramatic effect. As I do more and more of the cooking, so Karen is not always focused on food, I am now very focused on food. Add that to my learning to cook complete meals day in and day out, and I have really become a homemaker!

With so little family left, there are not a lot of major milestones to reach. Aunt Lois did turn 90, and that was a major milestone! Great party and a chance to see a lot of cousins. Glen got to meet a lot of my family then. It was nice that it was a happy occasion for her 90th, but also very sad that there are just so few family members left. Hard to believe that I am a "senior" member of the family now. We have become our parents.

Sorry to say I don't have family. Miss the celebrations, but also miss the sorrowful occasions.

The major milestone would be my wedding. And that means that "my family" now includes Greg's family. Now I have nieces, and sisters-in-law, and parents-in-law, and two more brothers-in-law. I find myself saying "our" and "we" a lot more instead of "mine" and "I." Ilene asked me the night before the wedding if I thought I would feel different after getting married because we already live together. But I do. I can't really explain it, but it is different and it's more permanent. You can't just walk away from it, and his problems are my problems and his celebrations are my celebrations and all decisions are about us.

We saw the first anniversary of my sister's death. Though calling it an anniversary seems wrong. That word seems associated with happy celebrations, rather than ones of remembrance and sadness at the loss. Though we do celebrate her. In stories, and laughter, and memories. I've watched my family come to terms with this loss, somewhat detached from their reality as I lived in my bubble 250-miles away. I felt guilty for being so far away, but also have a strong belief that life goes on. This often comes across as callous. And while I miss my sister and mourn her loss and worry about how it affects my family, it is an event that has happened and that cannot un-happen. But life continues around us - in new friendships and relationships, in new experiences and challenges, in new jobs and sights to see. And I try and find those, I try and stimulate my brain to find the positives out of a situation in the hope that constantly seeking positivity will breed a further positive outlook. Because the opposite is too scary a prospect.

I already wrote about the deaths in my family. But they have really shaken everyone. My dad most of all has struggled. Losing his dad and my mom's mom, who he was also. Lose with in 2 months, was awful. It felt horrible for me but it seemed even worse for him understandably. Also this has changed our relationship to the extended family. I felt a huge loss when I realized that now we would no longer be as much a part of things. I spent so much time in searcy growing up and in college, I feel really sad knowing I won't be as close with my aunts and cousins without Nannie around. I restarted therapy this summer to help me cope and try to keep my anxiety from coming back too strong. Jeff also started Medical school this fall which has been wonderful. I am so proud of him and I absolutely love having him closer. It has helped our relationship a ton. Sophie got engaged a few weeks ago as well. I am really happy because I really like mason. But it was hard not to feel jealous as well. Jeff and I went through so much strife over the whole marriage idea. And even though he's closer I miss him all the time. It's hard to wait on the sidelines while they have gotten to move in together, find their first house, and now get engaged. I'm happy that they are happy. I just want it too. I miss Jeff a lot and it's hard to feel like we're waiting forever.

The thing that's shaped the last year for us was my husband's suicide attempt just before Thanksgiving. It's been a day-to-day struggle since then. But I've also become grateful for each day. I can clearly remember the pain of thinking he was gone. We're working on getting closer, even after 19 years together.

Milestones aren't necessary positive. I guess there was hope that someday Hilary, my niece, might have a better quality of life. Recently it has become clear schizophrenia wins. My personal milestone is that after years of worrying, Beryl and David have finally told me there is no expectation that I will eventually become responsible for her care. I don't know what they have done to make that possible- but just knowing I will not become her caregiver is quite a relief.

I turned 50, my husband will turn 60 before the end of this year. I do not think of my age as a milestone though, just another year, but still the numbers have a certain nice roundness to them. I did not want to celebrate it in a big way differently than any other. We had a nice party with wonderful music, I did not advertise it as my birthday but a few knew and brought cards anyway.

My parents moving to anew house and seeing them there forced me to deal with their aging. Their morality is easy compared to dealing with them as they age from afar and how I take some of that burden off of my brother.

Discovering I have a half-sister in England who is alive and well. It has been a wonderful experience getting to know her and discovering how similar we are and sharing details of her biological mother with her.

I bought a flat, I own it, it is mine. Which is madness. That was pretty big. My sister also got engaged today (like 5 hours ago) so that's a big milestone and very exciting! (Engaged is the wrong word, they are getting married in a few months but I don't think she'd say 'engaged')

They finally realized how unhappy I am

My dad passed away last October. I had just started a new job and was under a lot of stress to complete a huge amount of work on student comments, and my luggage was also lost for most of the trip. Being with my dad at the end was a mix of wonderful, emotional and heart wrenching. Being with my brothers was wonderful. A highlight of my year, really. It made the family bond with my brothers stronger, I have a much stronger desire to be closer with them. Unfortunately my dad's passing has set off a major battle in the extended family, specifically with regard to my step siblings. They want to sue for more money, and my brothers and I are adamantly opposed to this greedy pursuit, when they and their families have already reaped a bounty off of my dad's hard work. I am not speaking to Ellen, whose behavior was unbelievably insensitive and petty during those hours and days after my dad's passing. I don't think our family will ever be the same. My mother is incredibly upset over this turn of events and is trying to figure out how to protect me from their greed after she and her husband, their father, die. This is an awful thing for my mother to have to think and worry about at the end of her life.

My mom left her jobs 3 times but finally managed to settle down in a new one. She is always just searching for that one perfect situation and it was hard for us to deal with her searching for something thaf just didn't exist.

I reconnected with my mom after not talking with her for about 15 years. She is severely mentally ill, and I now realize how afraid I have been of her. After many years of therapy and healing, and raising my own daughter, I feel ready to have contact again. One thing that prompted me to call her was my recent separation from my husband after 18 years of marriage. I feel like the family I created has broken, and its unbearable to feel like I have no family in this world. So hopefully something healing has come out of something painful and broken.

My family and I traveled to Poland and Belarus to go on a family heritage trip. We had the opportunity to visit the shtelekh my ancestors come from. It was incredibly meaningful to get to visit places I have thought much about, and share what mattered about these places with my family as we explored them. I feel like I got closer to my parents and my brother by getting to have these sacred spaces together. I'm so grateful that we got to go on this journey together in 5776.

My sister had her first child (and the first grandchild of our generation), and my brother got engaged. Both of these events put our ages in perspective and knocked me to a path of actually looking for a partner and thinking farther down the road.

My youngest sister has recently gotten engaged to her soon to be second husband and my parents managed to not freak out, and are somewhat excited that she is also pregnant. This has meant that I haven't had to hand hold my parents (mostly my mother) through her freak out about the whole thing, leaving me with more time and energy to be excited for my sister and to help out where needed.

My family and I once again went on a family trip and it was amazing. There was some mild hiccups, but 14 days spent in close quarters will do that. I feel like spending time with my family just gets better every year and it leaves me grateful that I got so lucky.

Major milestones? Let's see, no births, deaths, milestone birthdays of anyone available to celebrate with, no weddings of my family here. The closest is that my wife's oldest brother married her best friend, and because of that he may be the first of her most immediate relatives to be able to come to the US to visit us. Her best friend is close to being family anyway, and it's good news because she has been putting off having her own life until now because she has been taking care of her relatives. My brother-in-law is a widower and it's pretty clear that he was lonely. So I wasn't affected directly, but the quotient of happiness around us has increased, and that's always a good thing.

I finally have a place of my own. It's a converted apartment with a bedroom and backyard. This is important because I live on the SF Peninsula and anyone who has looked for a rental on a budget around here knows that "living area" is very general. Most places I looked at were closet size and/or look like they will collapse any time. Unfortunately, my moving caused a rift with my boyfriend and we recently broke up.

All 3 of my kids were here in town at the same time & we had dinner together, something that hasn't happened in years. I was joyous!

I broke away from the cancer treatment recommendations my doctors at Hopkins were encouraging and went with what I think is a more life -enhancing, life affirming approach offered by alternative approaches (non-american) I feel like I have taken control of my life. -- have more energy, less gloom. Should have done this earlier, but am delighted with doing it now. I like feeling responsible for my own health and my own choices -- I like moving away from trusting the narrowly focused approach to cancer that is so Western and drug focused.

My dad retired around his 63rd birthday this June. He moved back to Ayr, my hometown in Scotland, with my mum shortly afterwards. They now live much further away than they did when they lived in Bristol, so I’ll probably see much less of them. I’m really pleased for them, but sad for myself that we won’t have as much contact. But it’s time for them to do things for themselves rather than for the sake of us four (grown-up) children. I’ve barely spoken to them since I moved in with Fran 6 weeks ago. I need to make more time to phone them and email them. We’ve only had a few very brief (mostly logistical) chats and the odd text message exchange. And all this after me berating them when I visited them in August for not keeping in touch, not phoning me. Maybe I was berating myself during that conversation as much as I was berating them. But life gets in the way, sometimes: I’m wrapped up in my own world with Fran, making our own family (nope, we’re not adding to the family: I’m talking just the two of us). I could have phoned them tonight but wanted to do other things more keenly. And there’s only so much time…I’m already going to bed later than I would like. I’m really pleased for them that they have the means to buy a house and move back home, to design a life for themselves without the burden of children. “Burden” might be the wrong word. Responsibility? Ties? Obligation? I think I know what I mean, but it sounds wrong when you express it that way. I guess that reflects some of the reservations I have about the thought of having children myself. I feel too selfish right now to be responsible for another new person. I want to be the focus of my life for now. That’s probably not a particularly attractive trait, but it’s how I am at the moment. It might be why I’ve been steadily quitting social commitments: refereeing rugby and touch; Sol Samba; Man Choir - all things I used to do willingly but have now decided, for one reason or another, aren’t worth it anymore. My time alone and with Fran is more valuable to me at the moment. I really hope my parents enjoy their retirement and that it’s a long and happy one. I’m slightly worried that Sandy, my dad, will find himself at a loss: won’t know what to do with his time. But I think he and Moira, my mum, are aware of that danger and I hope they are taking steps to prevent any bad stuff happening.

My little brother got married and moved to the states! It has affected me because I no longer have family in Sydney.

One of my sisters got married in December. It was great. Hasn't affected me much other than I thought it was great that it happened finally. The husband is a good guy and I'm proud to have him as a brother in law.

Last Thanksgiving, there was an incident at my in-laws', where my father-in-law showed how dementia is really affecting him. It was shocking to all of us, including him. I think he just felt great sadness and frustration, but to his wife and my husband and I, it was a warning sign that this is no longer a hypothetical or far-future situation: it's happening, and we have to decide how we're going to deal with it. The really frustrating thing is that, so far, no one is doing anything. None of us want to change our lives for the other, and we are all just feeling sad and helpless. If my husband and I leave here and move there, we will lose his pension and retirement health care coverage that he's been working towards for over a decade. If they move here, they will be have to let go of all the people and places that they know, and learn a whole new way of life, and they're both nearing 80. I know my husband's mind is constantly consumed by these problems and worries, and I know that I don't have a say in this particular decision, because his mother doesn't give my opinion any weight. My husband and I both fear that something really terrible will happen before anyone makes a move. So that aspect of our lives causes us a lot of stress and heartache.

My grandmother and aunt passed away. This loss of matriarchs was difficult. Making some progress in repairing our marriage is also a positive step.

Husband was deployed. It brought us together and z had time to reboot this fatherhood thing. It also gave us focus on our future: budget-wise, beyond our current living space, after the military. It also made me appreciate my current home and made me want to explore the current area.

My family that I thought I was building is now gone. My wife left me and I am now re-building my future. It has been one of the hardest things I have ever had to go through.

My brother became very depressed. He couldn't function and first became so thin from not eating from the anxiety and then gained weight from going on the meds and going through a tough time. I really identified with him because I went through the same thing and my weight has been an issue for my self esteem and my family my whole life. I realized that all I wanted was for him to be happy, not for him to get a great job or lose the weight. And I think it was important to see in someone that I love that I love them regardless of their weight or accomplishments, so I can do that for myself too. When my grandmother and aunt harassed him about the weight, I stood up to them. I love him so much and he got a job and feels much better, but I hope we are closer in the future, because I do understand.

My son learned how to bike and I got into therapy. Those two things have radically changed both our mindsets. My son feels a new sense of freedom and power. I feel a new sense of freedom and power. Sometimes a relationship survives because you learn a new trick, and sometimes learning a new trick allows you to survive (and escape, pedaling fast) a relationship.

L. has grown leaps and bounds as a reader this year. It's been exciting to watch, and I think it really marks a transition between little kid-ness and big kid-ness. She is even reading silently now-- inside her own head-- which just seems so amazingly grown-up when she does it. A few things I love about the way she reads: 1) She really tries to nail the inflection on spoken dialogue, repeating it if she has to in order to get it just right. 2) She acts out parts of the story that are physical, getting up and really committing to the movements, especially when the mover in question is a dog. I believe she is a kinesthetic learner and getting into these positions with her own body really helps her understand what's going on. 3) When we're reading together, when she's reading aloud to me, and she comes to a word she doesn't know, she will often just make a little grunt that lets me know that I should fill it in. It's just something she started doing, and it enables her to stay in flow with her reading while getting the help she needs from me. It's functional and for some reason really adorable.

After having a baby, attending my wedding, and getting sick all in the course of a few months, Jonah just moved back to the U.S. It was very surprising as we weren't expecting this to happen anytime soon. The latter, Jonah moving back to the U.S. hasn't really affected me yet but having all three of us in the U.S., with kids (or kids on the way for me), is a major milestone in the family. My parents are really the old guard now and it makes me feel older. I am excited for my baby to have a potential cousin friend although not sure if Jonah feels the same way. I wonder if we will become closer now with this move.

My uncle has begun reaching out to me and making it clear that he wants to stay in contact. He never talked to me much while my dad was alive, but now seems to value me more because I am Dad's only survivor. It's interesting to see all the ways the two brothers are alike, despite their very different lives.

Well, in July of last year we moved in with George. In some ways I think it has benefited us.. but as it continues...I'm not sure.

This year, my brother decided to leave our family and never speak to us again. He has schizophrenia so I saw it for what it probably is; a product of his illness. I don't know for sure as he didn't tell us why he chose never to speak to us again. He just said he would no longer consider us his family. My father is very hurt and trying to understand but his heart is broken. I understand his reaction and at times, share it. But, the reactions of my step mom and sisters was almost too much to take. Even though my dad and step mom have been married for 37 years, she said that my brother "wasn't really her kid" and my stepsisters kept saying how hard it must be for me and my father but that it didn't affect them much at all. My brother has been struggling to connect with reality since college and I accept that the brother I knew as a child, I will never know again. But I love him as he is because he is my brother. I hope I see him again someday. I hope I can hug him again someday. I hope I can tell him I love him and that no matter how many years have passed, he has always stayed my brother someday. I hope that he will re-enter our lives someday. But, there are days when I wonder if he saw the truth in my stepmom and stepsisters much earlier than I now do and perhaps it would be better to stay away.

My mother died 3 months ago. This is the same woman who has hated me since my birth over 64 years ago (I'm not exaggerating or making it up - it was been verified by numerous relatives, including her own sister) and who deleted me from the family when my father died over 9 years ago and who excluded me from getting even a penny from her substantial estate. She was a vindictive, mean-spirited, revengeful person until the day she died. Although it took me the better part of 2 years, I had already forgiven her for deleting me and my son, her only grandchild, from her family after my dad's death (which neither she nor my siblings notified me about) but the pain of being excluded from even a penny of the estate my father built for her continues to gnaw at me on occasion. I continue to work on forgiveness and pray that some day I will have peace.

Mom turned 90, and her memory began leaking away like smoke. It’s kind of unreal, hard to remember how she was before this, hard to allow myself to feel close to her. I worry about the guilt I’ll feel later on.

Well, the big one for us as a couple was buying our first house. It was, of course, a huge move for us. It gives us the freedom to live how we want (with as many damn goats as we can take care of, if we want!), but it also ties us down. We live in this house, and we can't just up and take off, even if opportunities arise elsewhere. So, while it is very liberating, it's also limiting. However, I do want to write about some things on a more emotional level - this year we started trying to have a child. I was recently diagnosed with PCOS, which hopefully the medicine I recently started will help. I also very recently found out that my grandmother has a tumor in her lungs. She's 87 and feels that she has lived a good, long life, but it's still hard not knowing how much time we have with her. Of course, none of use know how much time any of us have, but to think about losing her is heartbreaking. One of my prayers for the new year is for us to conceive and for my grandmother to meet him or her.

We said goodbye to my grandfather, and many months later had a Celebration of Life for him. Family I knew, family I hadn't yet met, and friends from all over came to spend a few days together. We laughed, played, and fondly remembered that amazing man. It will probably be the last time I see some of my cousins, mostly because of distance. That is what affects me the most. I have a lifetime of memories of my grandfather, but only a handful of the cousins from far away.

Wow, there really hasn't been any big celebrations this year. My niece turned 18, that was big. I turned 40, but celebrated quietly with a Canadian, an English guy (from Christchurch) and some Argentinians in an Irish Pub in Auckland. Remembering how badly Catherine took my 30th, she would consider that a milestone, but for me it was just another birthday, which is only marginally better than any other day.

I lost several family members to lung cancer this year. It's pretty-well cemented my loathing of smoking--such a stupid, suicidal habit!--and also made me think a lot about mortality in general. We're such brief animals. Finding out that my rapist ex killed himself at the beginning of the year pretty much flattened me for a few weeks. I felt like a ghost. But at the same time...it's like I can breathe again, for the first time in almost a decade.

The big milestones included having our daughter and me not working for two years. It has impacted me tremendously, as being her mom is the biggest role in my life right now. I have never weighed so much, and I feel like I should not lose weight during breast-feeding. It's hard to exercise, though, as my body feels so floppy. I also worry about the pressure on my husband as the sole bread-winner for the family for the next 2 years until I finish grad school. He puts a lot of pressure on himself, and it's hard to find time for us to be spouses beyond parents.

As a result of all my health problems, I feel vulnerable and anxious about what may happen next. I have lost a good friend in the last year also and found out an old friend who I lost touch with died as well. Makes me worry more.

My parents finally separated, after years of fussing, throwing things, moving across 3 states, and making my adult siblings and me worry endlessly. There were many times when they said it was going to happen and it never did, as well as times when we thought it would be better that it happened and it didn't. A backcountry property feud with the neighbors is what eventually led to the separation...which is surely an interesting story unto itself. Friends turned out not to be friends, someone attacked my dad by the nearby lake, and the rundown house that they were living in needed more care than they could pay for. And so my dad decided to put a stop to everything. He moved in with my sister, gave up on paying off the loan for the house, and told my mom he was done with the marriage. As the oldest child, I have always been the part-time counselor when people aren't happy with each other. My dad continued living with my siblings (at my sister's house), and my mom went back to her family in Louisiana. They both got cell phones to keep in touch with us. I was worried about both of them, and called frequently to help ease their transition to independence. In fact, I called them more frequently than I ever had before! From talking to them, I learned that they were both about 10% unsure of what to do with their lives, 20% sad and 70% looking forward to and enjoying their independence. My dad was enjoying the new found quiet time, which he used to read, relax outside, and fix things around my sister's house. My mom enjoyed visiting the relatives she always longed to spend more time with. My siblings and I were just happy to not have the drama time bomb ticking away and exploding occasionally. Then suddenly, my dad went to pick my mom up, and brought her back to my sister's place. It only took a month and a half. After all the craziness we dealt with to support the split that we thought was long overdue, they essentially they decided they were happier being miserable together. What craziness did we deal with you ask? Most of it was on my brother and sister, as they worked to sell off and manage all of the things that my parents abandoned at the old house... cars, an RV, building materials, and random stuff that my parents thought they could fix up and make money on. Nothing was to be done with the house itself, as my dad had resigned to letting the bank take it when they got around to it. I don't know what they have learned from this whole production, but I hope they did learn something. I guess I learned that it is possible to drop everything and have a different and less stressful life if you have someone to fall back on. Really though, I hope that when I find someone that I want to marry, it doesn't turn into shared misery that is better than being alone.

We began visiting places on our list to move after I finish dental school. It is definitely making it sink in that this crazy journey is finally coming to a close, whether we're ready for the next chapter or not!

This goes back to day 1. My family is essentially gone. The woman I loved for more than half my life is gone. She was my family. She was my everything. I've tried opening my heart to other people but they either use my grief to hurt me to make themselves feel better or they don't care how bad I'm hurting at times. I hope to find a new family, those few people that will always be by my side. I think I have found one but I don't know. In time we will find out.

My sister got engaged! And my parents turned into vegans! And it seems like we all turned a corner in our familial relationship with one another. There's a sense of vulnerability that wasn't there before. Perhaps it's that I'm getting older or that we feel less inhibited to talk about sensitive topics. But I feel like the love we have for each other is the most special gift I have been given. They are all doing such great things with their lives and taking on new challenges. I love them so much.

We are finally building a woodshed after decades of just having woodpiles under tarps. This has been on our to do list for years, so we feel a real sense of accomplishment.

Well, my mom just bought a house in Findlay and my dad's in legal trouble again. I'm really kind of excited that if there's grandkids someday, mom will be able to host, I know she was worried about that, and apparently I was too! Patrick just got into high school, and Susanna is applying for his school, which I'm not sure will be the best fit, but I really hope it is. And they got a new dog, Bolt. Of course, I moved in with Justin, and we got a new couch which was kind of a big deal. I also refinanced my credit card loans and am trying really hard to stick to a budget.

My daughter turning 21. That is the only actual milestone that happened since last Rosh Hashanah as far as family milestone major milestone goes how is this affecting me? Well she's taking her independence more and more and although Young is trying to focus on her future, as she should, and has spent far more time away from her nest. She now says that her apartment is her home and this is just where she visits, I think that's a little painful for me, but I do have to get that she's growing up and moving on and out and that is part of the lifecycle. I know that she doesn't always love coming here because she thinks I'm controlling, and we talked about that and I committed to working on it with her. We had a very good heart to heart the first night of Rosh Hashanah. So how this is affected me as I have more time to myself. I miss not having any family around, but I get that she's got her own life now. I essentially have no family. I am a divorced single parent with one child.I have a brother who is so messed up psychologically that we haven't spoken since my dad passed away 20 years ago, because he thought I stole money that I did not. He moved it to another country, and did not give me any contact information or ever tell me that he moved. Essentially I feel like an only child. Then there is my mom, who I love dearly and she's 89 and still with us but there have been no milestones this year. She fell a few times, I feel a little guilty I'm not around enough to be more helpful, but she's also extremely controlling and very meticulous, and extreme and I do mean extremely challenging to deal with. So I feel lonely a lot of the time. Especially because I have a very long commute and I'm essentially spending 90% of my time doing something related to either getting to work, or working, or just plain basics like eating cleaning and grocery shopping. The only other Maasen I can think of would be moving back to my old unit at work, where I am much better loved and excepted then I was in the financial unit, where I try to get a promotion. That did not work out. It's frustrating and it affects my morale

My brother's bar mitzvah had made me stressed.

I'd say the biggest one - now come to think of it- is my brother was released from jail in the spring time (around April). He's been out since and living in a half way program near home. It's been interesting seeing him at home when I'm visiting and he has a cell phone - so will often text to check in. I wish he would get a job and get it together so my parents didn't feel obligated to take care of him. It hasn't too much affected my life... yet. But does feel like perhaps something is looming.

Caroline 's 9 months in Washington and our ability to support during this time of transition Her move back to NJ in June 2016 My mother

My nephew Benjamín was bien. He made me was I wasb't before: a mother. I spent a week with him and his parents at the Hospital and was soooo worried about hin, I wondered if that is what mothers feel about their children!!! I love him beyond words!!!!

We finally formally acquired a financial advisor and it's made all the difference in the world. My husband and I don't argue about finances and money issues any more, we both agreed to listen to our financial planner...what a great decision! And I can't ignore the other major milestone of moving our grown kids OUT of the house this year ... we didn't want to, we HAD to ... and it was absolutely the right decision, as hard as it was, it was the right decision!

My brother, after years of struggling, has a job that is steady and worthy of his dedicated hardworking nature. My son has just been made full time at his work. My daughter is 23 and has a job that pays more than mine! I know that others are still struggling. I am still struggling. But it really is getting better and it brings me hope to see it . I would wish that while our emotions get the best of us we remember some of our earliest lessons. Be patient, be kind. Instead of demanding,"Where is mine?",I think we could rejoice that we are next in line.

My beautiful daughter that I thought was the closest person in the world to me...and loved me so much told me that we're not "best friends" and that her friends are her family. And then over drinks,she said"why do you think my brother and I are the way we are? Beacuse of you and my father" I was cut to the quick. I was destroyed and I havent been able to pull it together. Nor have I been able to tell a single soul. I will never be the same. Always be careful of your words. You do not know the impact that they will have.

The biggest milestone that could ever happen to a family happened to our family this year when our 25 year old son, David passed away. 8/7/16 was a day we will never forget. We are very fortunate to have so many caring family members and friends. They took care of each of us and comforted us in our time of despair.

I turned 55 this past year. It doesn't feel like me. I often get the age wrong and say a younger number, only off by a year or two. This is not purposefully, maybe it's just my age catching up with me!!! When I hear me say my (correct) age, it just doesn't sound right. Most people say it's good that you don't feel your age. I would agree. However, lately, I've been noticing signs of aging and that's what bothers me. It's not so much a vain thing, but a visible recognition of time passing. I guess a good way to deal with this is to appreciate that HaShem has graciously granted me the ability to reach these signs of aging. Funny, this is what I would gently tell others who feel similarly. I should listen to myself!

My sister's marriage fell apart. We are all trying to help her find her way again.

My dog had to be put to sleep. I have had him since before my kids were born. He was 14 years old. It was very hard on the family.. He was put down in August and I have had the hardest time with it.. and still feel sad when I think about him.

My Dad passing was shocking... and yet not. We knew he would pass sooner than he was "supposed" to but I figured we had a few years left. I'm glad he went quickly and as painlessly as possible but I also know he was not ready. I feel guilt about it on my side but also on his behalf. I'm trying my best to be there for my Mom who is having the hardest time dealing with it. Reminding her that it's okay to grieve - even in bursts. I'm being as strong for her as I can be like she always has been for me.

Just a few days ago, my nephew was born. I am so incredibly grateful to have been able to be there for my sister and her partner, and that everything went smoothly. Every time I hold him, my heart fills up and it feels like it might just burst. I'm overwhelmed with how much you can love a new family member, and looking forward to a new role in life as an aunt.

My parents came to visit S. and me in July. It was the first time that they both saw my home and spent meaningful stretches of time with S. The trip was very stressful. They are 80 and 88 and have a hard time getting around on foot, and they don't hear each other or get along. Their frailty was very much in evidence during their visit. Toward the end of the trip my father revealed to me that he was going to need surgery on a prostate that may or may not have cancer. He had a flare up of gout and bladder issues. (He has since had the surgery and seems to be doing better despite a painful recovery) I set my jaw and returned to the familiar, exhausting role of the good and patient son, and S. was as helpful and comforting as possible. We had a very sweet dinner together on the last night that they were in town, and I drove them to the airport the following day. S. left back for NYC shortly after and I fell into a weeks long major depressive episode. It upsets me to think about this depression and how far I fell in such a short time. It is about a month since I came out of the depression and I am trying to do the work to ensure that it doesn't happen again. I want the work to feel more joyful than hard, but it isn't necessarily so. And I worry that my parents still have the power to trigger such deep sadness in me.

I am turning 65 later this month, my husband will be 70 in December. I am now a card carrying Medicare recipient, and my hubby will start collecting social security at the end of the year. We have more yesterdays than tomorrows--but are trying to live the days as fully as we can.

My sister had her second daughter. I'm a way this was strange for me, as I feel like this is another signal of my life passing by with little advancement on my part.

In March, my husband turned 50 - a milestone birthday to be sure. In late fall of 2015 I noticed that I was having chest pains. My husband unexpectedly lost his father at age 12 in a tragic accident. With that in mind, I became hellbent on doing whatever it took to be present for his birthday. In 2012, just a matter of months before my folks' 50th anniversary, my Dad was diagnosed with cancer and underwent major surgery. I made a deal with God at that time that if he kept Dad alive for their 50th, he could take him the next day and I wouldn't complain. I made a similar "pact" this time around. "Keep me alive and you can take me the very next day." Obviously, that didn't happen. What *has* happened though, is that I've become more aware of how essential I am to my husband. I am trying harder to take better care of myself so I can be there for him. He has already experienced deep loss and if I can prevent him from suffering like that again, so help me God I'm going to do everything I can. I call that a win-win.

I went on my first ever vacation with my spouse's family - 12 of us in a house in a foreign country, plus wedding festivities! It was wonderful and also difficult. It shed a lot of light on communication patterns that Becky has that I previously found confusing, and also made it clear to me that while I think of my family as a big one, we operate in smaller sub-groups, whereas his family really is 12 people and that's a whole different ballgame when they're all in one place. We came out of the trip more solid as a team (the two of us!) and also grateful that we can do our best to take what's awesome about having a big family and do other things in a new way.

It involves my child transitioning. It's confusing because it's a new phenomenon. As I a parent, I hope for the best and hope I'm supportive, but it's a work in progress.

My husband was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in June. On the one hand it was shocking. He had had a pre-cancerous condition for two years and we were sure it would not progress. On the other hand, it took me back to my own diagnosis with Leukemia in 2005. My husband was largely absent, leaving me to deal with my illness, our kids and the sale of our home prior to a move on my own. There was a lot of anger and hurt at that time, and it took a long time to get our marriage back on an even track. The lessons I have learned, in 11 years of living with Leukemia, and some major talks with my husband, have helped us reach a place where we will deal with this together. I hope to read this next year, having reached a controlled remission.

Two big things happened within two weeks of each other this summer. I had my first baby and my mom and sisters (read: support system) moved several hours away. This baby is the best thing that I can imagine happening and I'm still too close to it to realize what effect she has really had on my husband and I, but my family moving has been rough. I'm conflicted because they needed to get away from this area, but I was counting on some help from them. This was a really hard pregnancy (my prepregnancy jeans were too big when I got home from the hospital) and my family had promised to take turns staying with me for the first month or so while I recovered. I'm beating of postpartum depression with a stick now and I wonder if I'd be doing better if I hadn't had to get up and around so quickly.

My yummy little granddaughter had her first birthday. Five years ago, when her brother (my first delectable grandchild) was born, it coincided with my retirement. I started spending three days a week at my daughter's, joyfully helping with her young family. Helping take care of my beautiful (ptui! ptui! ptui!) grandchildren is still the joy of my life. But now that they are five and one, I find myself ready to cut back a little. I've started spending 2 1/2 instead of three days with them. I started taking an exercise class, and I've signed up for a couple of volunteer and cultural activities. My daughter seems fine with the new schedule. To be honest, I'm feeling my age (72) a little more. Luckily my granddaughter has just learned to crawl up the stairs and edge down backwards, cautiously. Very helpful timing!

Dad got back together with Marlene! This relationship takes a lot of pressure off of everyone else in the family because Dad, who is naturally quite content, is actually a lot happier and less demanding. We don't have to worry about hime feeling lonely. Dad has been diagnosed with early Alzheimers. He jokes about it a lot. He's 82 this year. Mom is well and content as always. She has urinary incontinence & Parkinson's. She is 82 too.

I don't know if this counts as a milestone, but I found out my sister had an affair/cheated on her husband of 20 years with a man she was head over heels in love with during and in the years after high school; a man she never really dated but more or less flirted and hooked up with off and on for years, until he settled down and got married. I've suspected for a long time that her marriage wasn't the best. We have no other sisters and are 20 months apart so we are very close. She's my best friend, but I also know her so well that I often watch what I say to her because I don't want to get a dose of her deadly venom. It's been like this a long time. But the affair really surprised me. She crossed a line I didn't think she ever would. People always think I'm the wild sister because I've never gotten married and I'm not religious, and I have moved around a lot and changed jobs and boyfriends etc. I always thought she had the same moral center as I did. But she talks about divorce like it's just something you do, which is not how we were raised. Her selfishness is really eating me alive and I can't really talk to anyone about it because we share a lot of friends and acquaintances and I promised her I'd keep it secret. I want to be supportive of her through this. Her husband found out about the affair and my sister broke it off with her lover. I'm the only person she's told. I advised her to get counseling with her husband and they are. But I really want to remind her that on her wedding day she made a promise in front of God and everyone that she was in it for life. I'm afraid if I tell her this she will either remain in an unhappy marriage out of guilt or just hate me forever for saying it. So I don't say it. I've kind of known all along that she wasn't wildly in love with her husband; I've seen her in love and was rather surprised this was the man she'd settle down with. I also knew that more than anything she wanted to have children and thought she was very old at age 28 to be just getting married. I guess the affair was inevitable, and I don't know what to say to her when she talks about divorce. But I guess that may be inevitable too. I joke that I'm too young to get married when people as me why I never married (I'm 47). But the truth is I take that promise you make on your wedding day very seriously and just couldn't follow through on it. Seeing my sister going through this makes me oddly glad I stuck to my guns and risked breaking someone's heart in the short term versus breaking lots of hearts in the long term.

The sad milestone of 2016 was the death of my only sister ,who is five years younger than I am . We were very close , and I just can't believe she is gone .It breaks my heart . Perhaps the saddest aspect of all is that things in life had recently turned around for her and gotten better ,in that she had found true love at last .The had moved to the southwest together and were so happy . Then she began to lose weight and could not stop,eventually starving to death at 67 pounds. This is one event I will never understand.She was a genius and beautiful and strong ,now she is gone .I miss her so much .

This past year, my sister and I got really close and lived together for the first time as adults. Spending time with her for about 3 months straight for a whole summer in Chicago was one of the greatest times we've ever spent together. I'm so happy to call her my best friend.

I think this is the same question as #1. In any case, my feelings are unfocused and generally worried. I want the best quality of life for him that he can have. I want him to live independently as long as possible. I'm hoping he would consider a condo in Joppatowne; then I could see him just about every day and shop for him and take him to his doctor appointments more easily. I know that assisted living is not what he has said he wanted. I feel like I am trying to hold a beach ball under the water.

My second son was born. It has been an incredible experience. But I feel so guilty sometimes that he is not getting everything that my first son got. He doesn't get as much of me and my attention. I can see in his personality that he has figured out that he is going to have to take what is rightfully his at this young age. I wish I could give him every moment my first son had. But I try to remind myself that he is getting something different and not necessarily worse. Just different.

Hmmm... I think my answer to question 1 would've been better for this question. Another milestone that just happened this past week is that my grandma had her 90th birthday. We, thanks to Aunt Arlie's generosity, were able to have a family reunion in Estes Park to all celebrate together. It was very sad that grandpa wasn't there, but incredible that grandma could be there with all three of her children, all four of her grandchildren, and all five of her great-grandchildren. We just came home from this celebration today so it's certainly very fresh in my mind. It was memorable and a blessing to be able to be together like that!

Amie has finished her Masters and she was offered a leadership position for MJC

Once again, Abby's marriage and my semi-retirement. The retirement has just started so I'm really not clear on its effect at this time. My daughter's marriage makes me feel a bit older as I watch my baby doing adult things. I'm also feeling very happy that she has found someone who she seems to really share her life with. I sort of think of it as one less thing I need to be responsible for or worry about.

My family was incredible this year. But I think that the biggest thing that happened was that Nana and Papa celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary. Their love and support for each other and for the whole family is incredible to witness and it is amazing to spend time with them and to watch their love continue to grow after this many years. In general, the fam got along amazing well all year - at school breaks when we were all home, in Chautauqua, and over the phone. My parents especially have been so supportive - emotionally, parentally, financially - and they both give amazing advice that really makes me think about my situation. I am so grateful to be a part of my family and to feel so supported and loved.

Cody and I moved in together. This has completely changed my life. I've had to learn to live with a guy, which is sometimes challenging, but he is the best guy to live with. He helps me through all of my anxiety and depression. He cooks, he helps clean. Together we have three fur babies (we got Oak a week ago). We got a new apartment and decorated it together. We do lots of things together. It has changed how I see myself (in a couple) and how I interact with others. But I couldn't be happier. One day I think I'll marry him.

Mum turned 70! She is such a wonderful, vibrant and inspiring spirit. I suppose it's affected me in the way that these things often do. I reflected. Upon her and upon me (I turned 40...) and upon life! It's precious. It's wonderful.

The bright sun reflected off of those aluminum rows of seats, stinging all of us in the eyes. The charge on our phones were near fatal, we had all sweat much more than we had intended for, and there was collective back pain due to an absence of seat backs. Yet, we refused to move until we heard those three words called. The excitement to watch my sister walk across the large stage to graduate from Boston College. Maggie's academic triumph was a first for all of us who were in her fan section. For my brother and I, she was the first of our siblings to graduate. For my parents, they were about to watch their first child enter into the real world. And for my grandparents, they were able to witness the first of their thirteen grandchildren finish school. It was a happy day filled with tears of joy and hugs. Maggie's graduation from Boston College has signified an overall shift in the atmosphere at home and the conversations at the dinner table. She has now started her job at an advertising consulting firm, and she is now living in an apartment in Somerville. I've been the only child still living at home for three years now, so it's not like that is a big change. It is the lack of knowing when she returns. Her bedroom technically is not her bedroom anymore, which is hard to fathom as her brother. Also, he dialogue amongst our family suddenly has new subject material. For all 17 years I've been alive, we talked about courses that were difficult, interesting topics, and pesky homework assignments. Now, I'm hearing about important presentations she is a part of at work, and big clients that her company is trying to attract. Maggie's graduation wasn't only a symbolic moment of maturation for herself, but for the entire family.

Major milestone? We made it through chemo and radiation. It was nice to know that our friends came through to support us. More and more I realize that time is not guaranteed. It's important to be with and enjoy my family now even if that means that dishes stay in the sink overnight. Family time is more important.

Adam and Corinne are expecting their third daughter in March. They are such wonderful parents and have created an amazing, loving family, but I do worry that one more child will add stress and exhaustion for them, and require even more of us. We are already spending more time with them to help out Corinne while she is pregnanant. But I know they will get through it and she will bring us as much joy as all the other grandbabies!

A lack of milestones has been our great happening. We have successfully integrated a new dog into our family. We have done well supporting each other. No major blowups. I have navigated through a bout of lymphoma and back trouble. My younger brother has had two eyes operated on for cataracts. My older brother continues to improve from his stroke 12 years ago. My younger brother now walks our two dogs three times day - twice off leash for up to an hour each time. A steady unexciting life is very good.

My brother getting married. This made me think about my life. How will this effect the starterde me think about my life. How will this effect our family. I'm still processing her being his wife. I thought she would try harder to connect with me as his sister. He hasn't. I don't believe her to be the wife for him. I hope good things for my brother. I haven't seen her have a good effect on him. I haven't seen a benefit to added here and her bossy family to ours. I just want to keep out of it, port I will say not so nice things to everyone involved. The wedding was unforgiving from my family and hers. They all need to show me more respect in order for me to respect and take it as part of my family now. Things h have to get better!!!!!

Over 70% of our world is the ocean, so buying a boat while living in a New England coastal town was a no-brainer for our family last summer. Whether it be used for fishing, transportation, or general leisure, it is one of the most relaxing and peaceful experiences regardless of the time of year. While the 20-foot Boston Whaler can be a pain to clean and costly to fuel and repair, the experience of being on the cool water allows us to see the world from a new perspective. The entire boating community in our coastal town is very tight-knit, and with it being a fishing town, there are a myriad of different events for those with boats to enjoy. The beautiful beaches around us are all seen from a new angle while relaxing with a drink or hanging out with friends. The boat was found for a relatively cheap price while we were driving down to Massachusetts one day and we would buy it a few weeks after that. Little did we know that it would be one of our favorite activities for the bountiful weekends. Personally I have had a lot of fun with the boat. It has definitely inspired me as a creator as well as a person to see everything I thought I knew about my location and the surrounding towns from a new perspective. Such new perspectives have influenced my work as an application developer, a graphic artist, and a journalist. George Wallace once delivered a commencement address titled “This is Water.” While such address has nothing to do with boats, the general idea surrounding it is that we are so caught up in ourselves that we fail to recognize the world around us, like a fish swimming through water. I am sure you can see where I am going with this, but to elaborate, the boat has given me another view to work with while making creative decisions regarding what I do when I am not on the water. Thus, the boat that was found on a little dirt road in New Hampshire ended up being a creative inspiration to this day.

A major milestone would be that Camden started driving. So hard to believe that my baby is 16 years old & is able to drive himself around anywhere. Where did the last 16 years go? He will be off to college in 18 more months & that just frightens me to even think about. He has proven to be mostly responsible driver & has done a good job about letting us know where he is, but actually "letting him go" was terrifying to me.

I'm stretching a little, but my youngest first cousin on my mom's side got married this year. It was the first marriage in the family in many years. His wedding affected us by pulling us together for a joyful experience, creating a bonding moment. My members of my mom's family actually sees each other pretty frequently, at least compared to a lot of families whose members live in different towns and states. As my sister and I were growing up, my mom and her six sisters all lived within 40 miles of my grandparents. Every Sunday was spent at my grandparents' house, and most of my aunts and their children came each Sunday. When my grandfather passed away, he asked my mom to help ensure that "the family" still got together frequently, and my mom and my step-dad have opened their home on a regular basis to us. Thus, the wedding wasn't the first time in a long time that we all had seen each other -- we just got together at Easter. But it was the first time in a long time that we celebrated each other, celebrated our family, and celebrated how much we love each other. (Also, a celebration of cupcakes and Journey songs.)

I'm not sure if this counts as a milestone but Dad's back has been really back to normal this past year and his relief and joy is so evident every time I see him. I notice it because he always talked about how his pain affected him mentally, and now that I see the other side of it I am really appreciating how he feels.

I have been racking my brain, here. It's be a slog year. No big milestones, which is both good and bad, I guess.

We decided to not have a family. He decided and that broke my heart. I will never feel the same way again, about myself, my choices. I decided to have a surgery that means I will not have a child, and if we divorce, I may or may not be able to foster. So I will be alone. It has been a different life than the one we thought we would be living.

My unmarried daughter with one child got pregnant again, and soon thereafter married her boyfriend of five years. Effects: now we can refer to him as "our son-in-law" instead of "our daughter's whatever." Some things haven't changed a whole lot - we're still carrying a big load financially; we still worry about the volatility of their relationship and the effect on our granddaughter. Now we have additional concerns about their ability to care for two children and two lives that will be impacted by their immaturity. It may stabilize them to have the legality of marriage.

I found out my ex-mother-in-law's sister died. While comforting Mutti, she slipped into thoughts of how I met her son and married -- as if she were telling this story to someone new, not me. She didn't realize she was talking to me as if she thought she was telling another about me. It confirmed for me some dimentia. I didn't correct her. It made me sad. I also am grieving the loss of a relationship (Erica, the Chabad Jew, that hates goyim and Progressive Jews -- while loving me). I know in the deepest part of me that I did absolutely everything I could to reach her emotionally. It makes me sad that somewhere in her broken childhood she was taught that only "her kind" were good and counted (as long as they followed all the rules percisely). There is no gray area in her life spectrum, just black and white. Her ultra-orthodox way of living a Torah life. To her, loving me was really bad. Even liking some goyim in her life was bad too. She is another example of someone emotionally tortured in her childhood by using ultra-orthodoxy (in a religious sense) as the means to do so. I looked around my house and asked myself if I could picture myself living with someone so caught up in her own turmoil of cognitive dissonance and jailed by the brainwashing of the Bible? Nope. It would be like having a Fundamental LDS or the Amish trying to exist with me. Erica indeed is loving someone that she was brainwashed to hate -- non-orthodox. It reminded me of the character in a movie that was a Nazi. He fell in love with a Jewish woman, during the Holocaust, but because he was indoctrinated to hate all Jews, he beat her up after he made love to her. He was an adult and was not indoctrinated to hate the other from a young age on. He was in a situation that if he was found loving her, he would be killed. Erica was taught to hate and fear those not exactly on her path; from a young age on. Emotionally she is stuck at the age when all of this hatred toward another was pounded into her head. How can someone live in and around people all over the very people of this planet that she was taught to hate (while desperately trying to be the best ultra-orthodox Jew possible?) It is not like they have their own sub-culture of a sub-culture on an island somewhere where they can do their thing without any other interruptions or influence. She has one foot enmeshed in the American secular culture and the other in her ultra-orthodoxy world. I have reached radical acceptance that no matter what I do or not do, it won't matter, and it won't change a thing. I do have to wonder why I met her and what I was to learn? This is what I learned... Cognitive dissonance; Religious abuse; Hating and loving people, both at the same time; Radical Acceptance. Radical Acceptance is my milestone in the 13th year of knowing her.

My gran was seriously ill this year, and it seems that it took a lot out of her. Before her illness, she still seemed to be youthful and strong for her age, but from what my parents tell me and from what I've seen she's a lot more frail and in her own words "the old lady has caught up with her". It made me realize that even if I think someone will be there forever, they won't be, and that I should cherish the time I spend with my family and friends.

My 86 year old father came for a visit this summer. Even though he has visited our family about once a year since my mother died 22 years ago, this visit felt like a "milestone" in more than one way. Dad was especially motivated to make the trip (from Denver to the Bay Area) to see our three daughters, their husbands, and his 4 great grandchildren. The youngest is Asher, who was born in April of this year. As I get older, I more fully appreciate the momentouos nature of any occasion when 4 generations of the family come together. Dad did pretty well managing the packing, the flight, our stairs, and visits with the children. But I can see how stooped, frail, deaf, and forgetful he is becoming. And his wife now seems too compromised to travel. So another milestone is my realization that any visit, including the most recent, could be his last. I cried when he left.

My mother was diagnosed with colon cancer last summer, just before the holidays. It mostly affected her (and my dad, I guess), but it also made me realize all the more clearly that they are mortal and getting older.

One of the major milestones that has occurred is that we were able to finally be reunited with my aunt and cousins who came from El Salvador for the first time. We have never seen each since the year 2001 when my mom and I came to the United States. El Salvador at this moment is very dangerous due to the gang violence associated with MS-13, but also the poverty is really high in the small country. Many people struggle to make at least $100 in the country and that's the reason for my cousins coming to the United States. This was a major milestone for us because they were struggling to be able to come to this country. It is very difficult for many Salvadorians to get permission into entering the United States. My family fought hard for the chance to be reunited once again in a country of better opportunity. Lastly, with my aunt and coursing smoking to the United States, they were able to open more doors for their future. This includes an education and also jobs that can offer more for your future. The coming of family I have not seen since 2001 has changed me even more than ever. Before their arrival, I did not really I hang out a lot with family or even with many of the cousins I had here. The cousins that came here this past year became very close with me and I see them as sisters. They have taught me a lot about the country I left when I was a little boy. In addition, my cousins were able to make me even more adventurous than ever. It seems as though I have visited more of Massachusetts this past year than the past 15 years. Another way I have been affected is that it has allowed me to become a mentor for my youngest cousin. She does not speak English and struggles very hard to get used to society here in the United States. I experienced this struggle before when I came to Boston as a 2 year old and the upcoming years were difficult. Throughout these past months I have been able to help both cousins with their English, but also insight on how to overcome the struggle of a new society. Boston does not have as many Salvadorians as El Salvador, but they were able to learn that Boston is such a great community. Overall, my cousins coming this past year has been able to make me adventurous and help me grow as a mentor.

Adam moved back to the DC area (he currently is living in Potomac with Mom and Dad) which puts all 5 of us in the DC/Bmore area. It's been great to see everyone more frequently. I hope Adam and Scott find happiness and stability moving forward.

I feel like a broken record because so many of my answers are about my mom's death! I'm very much still figuring out how it will affect me - I don't think I've discovered all the ways! In addition to the heartbreak of losing my mom and my childhood home, I think it has brought me closer to my partner, helped me understand my uncle, given me a deeper understanding of my relationships with my parents, allowed me a chance to get to know my distant relatives, and led me to feel like more of an adult. Something huge is disrupted and missing in my life, but there are good things going on as well.

Our son received a sentence of 3 years probation and the expectation that he successfully complete treatment for substance addiction. In many ways, it seems I've stepped into the role of father for him (he is my step-son by marriage). That has been rather challenging, in some ways, but very redemptive in others because I have to make up for some of my mistakes with my own children.

My parents celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary this past August. While we didn't make a huge deal of it, it is a pretty big milestone and it's crazy to think that Mom and Tom met over 21 years ago and that is how long I've essentially had a second dad. Tom is one of the best things to happen to me and to my family. I'm so thankful for him and can only hope that my partner in life lives up to the amazing man that he is.

My brother is getting married in 3 weeks. I have not spoken to him in 8 years and while we weren't particularly close it pains me to be disincluded in my family.

Adam becoming a driver. That's pretty big.

Cutting them off emotionally as they have continually gone against Hashem's ways and have tried to get me to do the same. Being without them as an emotional burden in my life makes me happier. They get everything they deserve. Hashem's way or suffer, no suffering for me anymore.

My youngest nephew got married this past year. He is the youngest of my brothers' and sister's children and the last to tie the knot. To me it is a marker that means the new generation will now take over the management of the world. I already feel that my opinions and feelings of the world do not matter as much. I am ready to hand over the reigns. I also look at these young people and hope that they know more and understand more than I did when I married.

My grandchildren ate growing up, learning more skills and taking on more responsibilities. My granddaughter toured New York-Philadelphia-DC with her chorus and was bery inspired and motivated. My granddon is improving his gymnastics and now has taken up a wind instrument. I am feeling very proud of their achievements!

My granddaughter started high school. Who would think this would be a big emotional event, but it is. She's becoming a young adult, with opinions and interests and ideas. It's a joy to see her evolve! Such delight!

My Granddaughter began her College Career. I have taken the opportunity to visit her on campus and she proudly showed off her dorm room, a tour of the campus and she introduced some of her friends. I am extremely happy she has adjusted to living away from home. My son and daughter in law are growing accustomed to having a child growing up and leaving home. It is a wake up call that life is moving on.

Me getting sober has been a huge milestone in my life! This is something I've struggled with for years and now I'm finally doing something to take back my life. Day 65 today and for that I am grateful!

My family, after living at Burke Ave for 11 (maybe 12??) years, moved!! Into a much bigger space for them and my maternal grandparents. I'm so proud of them for doing it -- it was a long, hard process and they moved through it with enthusiasm and grace. It was so weird to be completely separate from their experience, so far away from all of the day-to-day realities of the move. I still haven't seen the house to this day! But everyone who has been there -- friends, family -- says it's just perfect for them and every time I talk to Mom on the phone she can't stop gushing about it. The fact that the whole thing didn't affect me really affected me, and added to my homesickness throughout the year. I wanted to be there to help them clean out the basement of the old place, to paint the new walls, to pick out wall decorations and rugs. But they, like me, are starting a new chapter and if I can't be physically part of it, I take comfort in the fact that I get to hear about it/experience it through their eyes and excitement around it.

My cousin died. It made me think about the fact that I will never see him again this side of eternity.

We lost my grandmother. We've lost a lot of people the past year and our family is forever changed.

In July of this past year, my grandmother cooperatively handed over the keys to her small, white Toyota and returned it to the dealership that initially sold it to her two years back. This was a pivotal moment in her life because she acknowledged that during this phase of living, she will have to forgo many luxuries taken for granted in her daily life in previous decades. Many of my relatives knew that this day was fast approaching, as my grandmothers eyesight has diminished over the last few years, but no one would have imagined that she would take this restriction within her life so well. This recent event effectively portrays my grandmothers ability to adapt to many situations, even unpredicted ones, and explains why she is able to keep such a friendly demeanor to everyone she interacts with despite the immense hardships she has endured throughout her life. One a more self-centered standpoint, this decision has directly affected me because I, being a budding adolescent driver, was most likely able to purchase the vehicle at a significantly reduced price once my grandmother decided to stop driving, but instead the Toyota was just given back to the car dealership. Although this decreases the amount of potential freedom I would have as an individual just eight months away from adulthood, I understand and respect my grandmothers decision to sell the car back to the dealership because with this decision, she is making a great profit and thus securing funds to support herself throughout her years of future old age. I also believe this event affected me because it demonstrated the idea of acceptance of self-fallibility through my grandmothers genuine agreement to sell the car in a very sincere manner. To have one of my role models demonstrate this skill of acknowledging your own limitations humbles you as a person and changes your outlook on life from your "correct" viewpoint of political, cultural, and social issues to your "right way" of thinking or acting.

1. Mark graduated from high school. He is the youngest and therefore this marks almost "the end" of my child-rearing stage of life. 2. Dorothe got married to Danny. As they start their 'new' life together, there are a lot of shifts and changes that go along with that, both in their relationship as well as in the family as a whole. There will be less cohesion in our group as they establish themselves as their own family unit. 3. Felix had his top surgery and started his welding program in earnest. He is coming into his fullness of being, which is both strange and pleasing, and humbling. As a parent, I have to let go of all my expectations and attachments in order to allow them all to flourish in their own ways, even if those ways aren't what I would have expected or chosen for them.

My grandmother Carolyn passed away one year ago, My aunt and uncle have officially split and all of our truths seem to be overpouring leaving us only to suffice to love... a deep love. My little sister has reached out to me and the voice that was so deep for too long has began its journey to healing. Although I am enduring a strong sensitivity to all of our angst, uncertainty with one another//ourselves, I feel like my exploration into unconditional love for my family is only benefitting us, especially as I dive deeper into self-love through my growing pains. This is the best life of my life and of our life. I want to be a big step into clearing up our family's generational karma. It means the world to me that we are coming to be closer with each other and getting to know one another.

Our daughter got a fabulous job in NYC. My hometown. She's moved there temporarily with her husband. Bless him for going too. She's loving the NYC life I talked abiut forever. She got the job because of her talent and experience as screenwriter. I'm very happy for her and quite envious as well. I'm holding back on the envy. Our dear son got engaged to a lovely young woman. We are very excited for their future.

Three weeks ago, my little sister had her Bat Mitzvah. I was so incredibly proud, and I saw just how much she'd grown up. We're really close, and I know she looks up to me. My mom basically planned the whole event herself, and didn't have the time or energy to write a speech about her. She asked me to ghostwrite, and I put in messages that reflect how both she and I feel about her. When my mom was reading it at the end of the service, I started crying. As the baby of the family, she's all grown up, and we were so proud.

Got pregnant! At first, I was sick and it was an annoyance. But now, I am big and beautiful and I feel like a goddess; like I have come out of Plato'a cave and am experiencing fully what it means to be a woman for the first time. Pretty amazing, since I was disgusted and turned off (and scared) of pregnancy for most of my 20's...

Things got really upsetting and confused when we finally parted company with Esther. Of course, she took nearly every boarder and student we had. I didn't know whether to cry or cheer. Now we are going to self-care in the barn so guess we will see how that works out. I know that now I have very little time to myself because I'm babysitting my grandson while my daughter teaches. I adore him but it's hard to get things done. Guess we will see how it all works out by this time next year.

Our father who has fourth stage cancer in remission with target drugs has congestive heart failure and the whole family is working as a teamfir the first time and helping Dad . Our immediate family our daughter her husband and our grandchildren are moving out of the neighborhood to a big city . Our extended family has buried two people and loss another who moved away .Big changes ..

One major milestone that we've reached this year is my oldest child's graduation from preschool and starting kindergarten. I feel like my son has transitioned beautifully, with hardly any growing pains. I am so proud of him. Many times surrounding the graduation and contemplating that first day of school, I would become choked up, full of emotion -- pride and happiness and bittersweet recognition that my baby was growing up.

My grandmother, the matriarch, died. I should be upset. I missed my grandfather after he died, I still think about him and miss him on occasion. But with her, it ended in a not good way so there is a loss but it's not sharp. I got her cat, and am caring for him now which is a ton of stress (he isn't getting along with my cat and vice versa). I still miss poppy.

This year has been a year of milestones! We had milestone birthdays, a high school graduation, a son go off to college, leaving us as empty nesters. This has all made me more reflective than usual. I think I was sad some, and wouldn't say that I was terribly happy about it at the time, but the truth is, I really wanted to keep the attitude that the changes we were experiencing were changes we were supposed to experience at this time and while they were hard and felt sad in the moment, they are really great, exciting milestones of growth and a bright future in front of all of us.

My second grandmother/ 4th grandparent died. It means both of my parents are next in line now. It's too abstract for me to think about coherently.

4th and 5th grandchildren born and 6th on the way! So much more incentive to blow my business up so I have much more free time and money to spend time having fun with family!!

I cannot or should I say will not "go there,RIGHT NOW,atleast."Emotionally it is not in my best interest to go so deep as to re- experience and then express the degree of feelings of hurt,anger,disgust and shock I actually have about all of the many many events and incidents that have occurred and led to the estrangement between my so-called sister and myself over the last 20 years based on my discovering and telling the absolute TRUTH about what I experienced as a child by a very close family member and her absolute FEAR to face and accept it--that led up to my not being invited to either of her children's weddings this year.... I have tried my best to fully identify ,accept and manage my variety of feelings surrounding the ENTIRE issue--and I am doing my very best. I literally have become physically ill as a result(BTW.. Colitis IS such a Jewish thing--nothing like having your KISHKAS twisted!!!) I don't want to say anymore except that the situation is disgusting and a damn shame-and my precious father is turning in his grave! OY. "Besides THAT, I'm fabulous".......

Hmmm...young cousin who I watched grow up got married. A sister retired. One of my best friends turned 60. I guess it makes me feel old, but that's ok. We had our day. Now it's someone else's turn.

Since I don't have a family, the major milestone is my diagnosis of chronic myeloid leukemia. It has affected me by forcing me to redefine what is important in my life, and how I will live my life from now on.

My nephew was born. He's so beautiful and seeing my family grow is amazing. He addition has definitely pulled my family together in a different way- and we are definitely more tight knit.

Our son was selected to serve as president of the NYU chapter of MEOR. As a child with life-threatening dairy allergies, our son was often made to feel like "other" within our congregation. Well meaning adults segregated him from the group when dairy foods were served. Despite my wife's and my best efforts, the congregation's staff was unable to understand that these sorts of accommodations - fine for an adult - repeatedly sent a negative message to a young child; later a teenager. Quite predictably, after becoming a Bar Mitzvah, our son disengaged from Jewish Community. I am encouraged and delighted that the MEOR leadership have successfully reengaged our son in Jewish community. No doubt, his Jewish journey will be much different than my own, and his childhood experiences will serve as an example of how not to accommodate children with special needs, but I am delighted that he is now experiencing a version of Jewish community in which each individual is made to feel as though they truly are B'tzelem Elokim.

My daughter finally took her heroin addiction and recovery seriously, and (as of now) has a little over 4 months clean. I feel a renewed sense of hope for her, and for the people who love her. We are all very proud of her.

I can't even think of any milestone, let alone a "major" one. Big things that happened: 1. Naftali started school 2. Naftali got toilet trained (mostly, except for overnight) 3. We had our first move as a family, out of necessity, but it has been a good thing 4. I had disease progression and changed medication 5. I was no longer Dir of Adm at Hunter and moved to HC. 6. Juan ended his time with Voxy, in a negative way, with no certainty before us. Are these things milestones? Are they things to celebrate or mark time with? Naftali's certainly. He's a big boy, getting bigger all the time. He has ha a million milestones - so many words we don't count or notice anymore, friendships (like his love affair with Julie) and connections and noticing others, capabilities in all sorts of ways with his body and his hands and his mind and his language. He's a rolling milestone, one after another. Each one he passes, I realize that it will be the last time I think or see or feel this, since I can't really see having any more children. Juan wants them desperately, I don't see it as possible. So this will be the life, us three. Soemtimes I think that that is impossibly sad and limited, other times, I think it is sensible and manageable and the structure that will allow me to be a good mother going forward, and a well mother, as I confront the realities of having MS. I think that I'll always have a little regret that it isn't different, that we don't have a bigger family, but that regret is in the context of all the others - Juan's failures and setbacks and change in our circumstances, my illnesses, his, our ages and obligations to family (well, mine). There are so many moving parts that makes me peaceful about having one child - having any child at all. He may have five, he may have none. Life will continue as it is meant to. The milestone of this year may be that it was the year that Juan and I, together, confronted the reality that this threesome will be our family going forward. That the baby phase is over and we are moving into the long road of pre-school and elementary school...I'll stay with this one for now. Adolescence is a whole other beast and I'll take NAftali the child for now, the one who still wants to snuggle buggle, who still cries for his mami, who still thinks a kiss can make it better, who still wants to be carried in my arms, who still smacks me on my mouth with his, who is still gentle and permissive (sometimes) of my physically intrusive mothering. Maybe I miss the milestones at my detriment, but I'm not ignoring them in the moment. I cherish the photos of the Naf and Mami ice cream date on the day he magically went to school in underwear and no accidents. I think he feels he has a mami who knows how to make a special day. I know that going forward I want to be the way I was on that day, and on his awesome subway birthday. I am being the mother that I said I wanted to be - I don't obey it all, but I will celebrate and make a fuss and make special the things that are actually HIM and about what motivates him and makes him really happy. He cherishes every one of those trains and so I'll buy them without thinking twice. I listen to him. I do. The little milestones come all the time. The move was seismic. The loss was too. Now, Juan is talking about buying another place, with a massive debt, and liquidating everything we have. I won't do it, but want to desperately....how to make it all work? We have so much and yet not enough for the life that he (and we both) want to live. I don't know how to make peace or sense of that and that makes me a bad partner, a disrespectful one, bc I can't respect any risky choices after seven years of disruption. That I am the one who has provided stability, in spite of being fired, is beyond me. So...for a lot of this relationship, milestones have been losses and things that suck, except for Naftali. Next year, I hope the milestone I'm writing about is about my writing and the money I have made. Not that the money is a measure, but it is an external box to check on the way to...whatever formal career "success", which we need to move our lives forward. And my writing - I can see that I could easily have a draft of a manuscript done by the holidays next year. There's no earthly reason why not. Three years, Jennifer said. I'm not missing that deadline. So next year the milestone will be: trip to Israel to see family a finished draft of Appropriating Harlem, on its way to or already with an agent

Mike's youngest child is learning to drive. I guess I did not realize how fast time has flown. I thought it was just several years ago the she came into the world.

That our eldest granddaughter spent a gap year at yeshiva in Jerusalem - we were proud of her but worried. Also my daughters eldest daughter sang in Carnegie hall with her chorus the Israeli song erev shel shoshanim that was sung at our wedding 52 years ago. It was a shechiyarnu moment.

We took ellie to visit family in the desert of southern California in jan 2016. fred did not want to go initially, but he did get a lot out of it in the end. it was a reunion for us, me, did my heart good literally i kept thinking and saying. it was an all new meeting for ellie because she was too little to remember her cool cousin michael and others. stayed with kathy and gary and not barb, which was a nice change. overall it was a very healing thing for me and my family history and a way of continuing what could have been lost relationships for our daughter. Then madeline and boyfriend jake went to LA on their own, amazing feat for her, and repeated some of the same reuniting of relationships, so all in one year, good.

There were no major milestones for my family this year. We continued to truck along. I may be wrong, but I believe Ma was enrolled in college this time last year. I'm very proud of her for continuing her education. It should also open many doors for her.

I celebrated a milestone birthday. Hard to believe I am 50 years old. Gabby and Marty planned a party for me with Mom that was just lovely! My local friends came out to celebrate me along with Dina, Sandi and Cayla $$ Jenna. I don't feel like I imagined I might feel at this age like I do! I feel young and working in the senior living industry has made realize all the more how important to know age is only a number, Be healthy, excel use and be optimistic!!

My son grasped the passion to continue moving forward even when the plan goes wonky and challenges lay in the path. He overcame fears and adolescent laziness to successfully complete a 6 week PreCalculus summer course. It's hard to describe exactly all of the elements came together to test his commitment and drive. He chose to "just do it". His relationship with himself is a whole lot better. Our relationship changed at that moment too....it's even better now than before.

Relief. The milestone was a Bar Mitzvah celebration. It was not easy, but it was all it needed to be in the end and from it we all grew.

Kim deciding to convert to Judaism made us go to services more often and got us more involved with our congregation. My daughter, who lives in Boston, started going to services once a month. I'd been wanting to participate more and had felt guilty in the past that I was not going. It makes me feel I can follow through on something I want to do. Have met some people st Temple but still no good friendships. There are people Id like to be friendly with but not much time to put in to new relationships. So Kim's decision has changed most of us in the family and brought us closer to Jewdaism.

I am pregnant with Ellie's first sibling. I also have had Ellie for quite a longer amount of time since Jordan has dexided being a father is stressful and expensive and he needed a break...I've been in transition mode major and seriously stressing, but have been evolving, always.

There wasn't any.

What first comes to mind is the more recent events with my baby sister. We think she has Williams syndrome, a rare condition that has implications for a person's development and health throughout their lives. We recently found out about it and I'm still reading about it, talking with my dad and my other sister, trying to process and feel... It's just been very intense and a process of figuring out how to support her, support each other and also what are the roles we get to play. There are many aspects in the economic sense, in life quality, family decisions and at the same time, there has to be a space for my sister's mother to also make decisions (she's my half sister). So I'm just trying to be there do family members and allow or create spaces to sit with them in their pain, doubts, feelings and my own as well.

It's really hard to pick just one thing. From my mom's 7 surgeries resulting in a hopefully final surgery to amputate her leg to my son who is now 20 deciding to buy a house, with other events in between. My son's grandpa died on his dad's side and I was there to be with him and the family while he passed. I've witnessed life happening all around me, while I've just kept moving on with mine as much as I can. My mom's surgeries affected me in a lot of ways, but mostly it showed me resentments that are still there and how hard it was to grow up with a sick mom and just wanted her to be there for me. It's shined a light on how selfish I can be, but still recognizing the little girl inside me who is just afraid of her mom dying. I think watching my son grow up has been difficult for me, yet at the same time I feel a sense of pride for who he is in many ways. Watching his grandpa die was beautiful and sad at the same time. It really showed me how much I care for my son's dad, even though we haven't been together in several years and won't be together in the future. Yet, there is still a lot of love and I consider him family.

A treasured and much-loved patriarch of the clan died at 98.5 years young (he and his 95 year old wife birthed this cliche). When I heard he was faltering - we motivated, bought a ticket for Israel, and had a wonderful few visits with him before he went to the other side. If ever there was an object lesson to carpe diem, this was it.

Jonathan had a baby!! I feel like it brought him closer to all of us. She's so beautiful and he's such a loving papa. I'm excited for Olivia's future

I guess it would have to be our 45th wedding anniversary. We've shared an amazing life, have 3 great sons, one of which will live with us forever. To think we've survived and thrived though all of this is amazing when I think about it. Mental health is as important as physical health I guess.

Nobody died (yet) so I don't think there was a major milestone.

I bought a house this year. My dog is finslly getting the hang of using the yard. My drive to work has been cut in half. I now want to spend weekends at home in my house or yard. I actually have more time to do stuff. But I still haven't gotten out to do stuff.

Our youngest child left for college and my husband and I miss the children so much.

Within the past year my grandfather has been hospitalized, now two times. I am now thinking not only about my grandparents mortality but also my parents, and to some degree, my own.

I sold my house which set in motion a series of changes for my family. It reduced my overhead and responsibility. It required my daughter to move to her own place and earn a real living and it reduced the space that the family had learned to use. It also forced me to make a decision to move in with my life partner. So commitment on my part. Commitment on my daughters part. Commitment on my partners part. And no longer a resource for my son and grandchildren. I am completely happy with having lost the responsibility for all involved. I am also ecstatic to see my daughter thriving and that my son has learned to appreciate the beach. Mostly, I am very happy to share life with my partner who is loving, caring, easy-going, inclusive and wonderful. There are a few drawbacks, but all are easy enough to deal with. Freedom for all.

My niece was born a month ago and she is so beautiful and wonderful and I just want to spend all of my time with her. I'm sad she's so far away, and I think this is going to change my relationship with my sister, but I'm really glad she's here.

My Great Aunt passed away, and it made me think more about my own Grandmother and what it will feel like when she passes away one day.

A major milestone was buying a house in Westport, Washington. Is a place where my wife and I have wanted to be for the last 40 years and we camped at Twin Harbors State Park numerous times. It is right near charter fishing for salmon. We go down there, and the pace slows. Our heartbeat slows. We become generally more relaxed. I like it there even when it's pouring rain. One has a real sense of being "away". It is something I really hope to be able to leave to my son and his family. In some ways this milestone is a tangible marker that I've reached a point of financial maturity and "arrived". There's not much I want in life, and things are generally pretty simple. This is one thing that means greater connection with my family. It also means a place where I can get away to my own thoughts and do some serious writing at least between Christmas and New Year's.

A major milestone in my family has been that I realized how my mother's overprotectiveness has cast a shadow upon my self esteem. By looking for the 'fault in my nature' (my ethnicity, my genetic make-up) I internalized the idea that I was inherently at fault, wrong, or bad. It is a milestone in that it has set me on the path to free myself from this core belief.

My losing a testicle, being in the hospital, which is about eleven months away now, but it looms large for me. Still recovering, but not really sure there's anything better to recover to. Son #2 gets older, eleven now, but we don't seem to have milestones now, just an endless, too busy, too full now. I realize this status quo won't last forever. That's part of my depressive thinking, that it has always been this way, that it stretches out in front of me always the same. Which isn't true, but it's how I feel. I know there are other ways to interpret this, other realities that are just as true to the facts. I need to hunt those realities down and cling to them. And hopefully, not all my years will sound this same refrain.

We had to move my 92 year old Mom into an assisted care facility because she took several falls and had several head injuries and now is becoming demented. It has been very stressful because I live 3,000 miles away and my sister lives close to Mom and has to do most of the work.

We got past ourselves as individuals and came together as a family again. After a major fight the year before we were able to work through it, over the course of the year, and get back together as a family. It was a fight that made (some of) us question our status as a family and if we wanted to remain a cohesive family. Luckily we did. It was difficult working it out from opposite sides of the country. But in the end our loved kept us together and we were able to bring back the joy in seeing one another. This has renewed my sense of strength we have as a family and is very comforting. I always knew we could function as groups of 2. Nicki and I, Mom and I, Dad and I, Mom and Dad, Nicki and Mom, and Nicki and Dad. But when we all got together there was always tension. That time the year before it was so much and I didn't know if we could come back from it. But luckily I was surprised and glad to be. This come back as family has given me faith that we can work through almost anything.

It is my friend-companion-partner selling his house and moving in with me in my little house. This is fairly recent and has been extremely exciting. At first it was an exercise of clearing the house a couple of years ago and then making space to welcome D. The fairly new cohabitation is a daily succession of personnel choices and commitments to building a loving, fun, efficient household in which all family members are welcome and want to visit. My new American family has swollen to a new dimension, 8 instead of 2 (1 more adult daughter, one son & his wife and 2 grand sons) and i totally love it.

This last summer we spent the month of July at my dad's house working on cleaning it out in preparation for him to move. We made a lot of progress but there is still a lot more to do. My mom was sort of the archeologist fo the family saving huge numbers of family heirlooms. Perhaps some day I will appreciate this but right now I find the immense amount of stuff stifling. For this reason, I do not think the I have felt the full impact of the reality that after 30 years we will soon be saying goodbye to my childhood home. Going through this process did inspire me to make a resolution... If I want to save something for my children I must be willing to take the time to write down why it is important. There will be no random items of unknown significance left for my child(ren). Also, honorable mention goes to my sister who has her first serious boyfriend. We spent some time hanging out with the two of them this last summer and it was great. I don't want to be too presumptuous about the path of their relationship but I think it would be great if he some day joined the family permanently. I am very much rooting for them as a couple.

I retired. The family has to get by with much less financial capacity and I have had to find other self fulfilling satisfaction. I am happily more calm.

My parents started talking about retirement, and how they're not going to be able to afford to come visit me out west any more. I always knew their retirement fund was lacking - my mother used to "joke" that my brother and I were their retirement plan - but comments like this made it considerably more real. Sparked me to start looking for work back home, though I couldn't actually pull the trigger.

My family moved to Williamsburg this year to be closer to my dad's job. It's made his life immensely easier and he is happier for it. No 4 days away from home, no long drives twice a week, but it was hard on me. Im further away from college so it's harder to get rides and stuff for holidays and its a bigger pain in general. The hardest part though, is not seeing all my friends on a daily basis during holidays. It's hard. We moved into a neighborhood where the average age is 70ish years old so there are really few college age kids for me to meet so all I do is spend my time playing games on the computer with my friends wishing we hadnt moved. It sucks but at least my parents are happy.

Well, the breakup was "family." The family stayed relatively the same. Mom had 1 year cancer free, Dad still doing his thing, P doing his thing, etc. Seeing P and Mom every week is huge. They were my rocks during the breakup, without a doubt. My faith in them is pretty unwavering.

3) Our extended family was finally able to have another summer vacation. My father's side of the family is extensive, totaling sixteen people all together. These family vacations have been a tradition since before I was born, and some of my fondest memories of my family come from them. As the kids got older and our lives became more complicated, getting everyone together for a week was impossible. Our final gathering was in 2012 when my eldest cousin went off to college. In the time since then there have been a number of devastating losses, and I found that I was seeing my extended family more often than ever before, but it was for funerals, not fun. Last summer we were able to organize everyone for the first time in what seemed like forever. Our vacation had to purposes, one to have a fantastic time with the whole crew and two to hold the memorial service for my great aunt’s passing. We rented a waterfront property in Surf City, NJ for an entire week. It was not fancy, glamorous, or high profile, but it was incredible.

I retired. It has given me more time to study and volunteer, as well as allowing me more time to help around the house.

my son moved to cape town ... left my office a bit depleted but nevertheless i am happy with this move as it appears as if he will find his way with this new life style

There were no major milestones. No one got married, no one died, no one graduated or had any achievements I can think of...nothing really changed, I guess. Is it atypical that I don't have a milestone to provide? Perhaps it's because my family is small. Since my grandparents died, my "family" as I think of it really consists of just my parents, sister, and I guess maybe my mother's 2 first cousins. I don't have a relationship with any of the cousins in my generation on my mother's side or my father's side, and his immediate family is all dead. I try my best to ignore my stepmother. I don't even talk to my sister, to my great regret, because we have a horrible relationship and we keep failing to make it work. I suppose one thing worth mentioning is my ex-wife, who isn't family anymore, but once was, in a way. She had a baby in May. She did drugs, including a lot of meth, throughout the pregnancy, and is still doing drugs, although she's clearly trying hard to be clean, and slips up a lot because she's depressed, severely anxious, an addict, and surrounded by addicts/pushers. Really--everyone she knows. Because I am infertile due to my hysterectomy, I felt a sickening jealousy and horror. When we were married, it was always going to be her that would carry the children. That could have been my kid, and while I didn't have any interest in getting back together with her or co-mothering her son (she became bisexual and dated a man, who knocked her up and promptly died in a motorcycle accident), I couldn't help but feel...weird...about her having a kid without me. I've since adjusted. In fact, it's brought us closer, because I have done my best to support her. She is so, so alone, caring for this kid and her dependent mother. I don't approve of what she's doing, but I am trying to help. I care a lot for her. She was abusive to me, but we've grown closer, in a way. I am quite sure it will blow up at some point, and by the time I read this next year, I may be horrified to be reminded of this. Still, I hope she and I can remain friends. Both because she needs someone in her corner who isn't using or abusing her, and because she is kind of like my best friend. I don't know. It's weird. Anyway. Milestone, yes. Family? Not really.

Hah, so far as family goes, I would have to say a major milestone was my brother removing pictures of his deceased wife from his apartment. This has left me feeling liberated, as it is a healthy sign, one that suggests he is rejoining the land of the living.

The home I was brought home to as a newborn and grew up in was listed to be sold and is currently on the market. I played a major role in getting it ready and it is so bitter sweet. I get flashbacks every time I walk through the house, I remember times growing up. This is such an important step, a chance to really move on and move forward with all of our lives. Getting rid of a home is like ending a dream, but I guess the time has come to move on to better dreams. Mom and dad need to get settled for retirement. Moving has been turmoil but hopefully it will all pay off! Tomorrow we meet with the agent to discuss offers, hopefully this will close really soon.

My24 yr. old daughter has started to separate from me and I am letting her. I can't save her or make her do it my way. I must let her fall. This is where growing pains come from. It has allowed me to love her differently. It has been somewhat freeing. Still nervious but that is motherhood. This feels like a job I didn't do very well. This is based on the fact that she is not happy and confused. She does not have high morals, although I believe with most things she is truthful.

immediate family: Daughter graduated valedictorian from high school and headed to college. she's having a hard time socially, which i thought brought (would bring? would have brought?) separated parents to better speaking terms. i thought, but did not really happen in the medium term. went through some anxiety about kid for a few weeks, but settled down into a routine. extended family: no direct change/effect for me, although several milestones happened... uncle passed away in brazil, sister has 2 kids in the army in israel, etc... maybe it's my lack of empathy ;-), maybe it is because it's sooooo far away and i don't talk to them that often...

This year was the first year that I broke the six-figure mark with my salary. Just barely, but there it is. It's made me realize how much of my ingrained behaviour was due to being poor for most of my life, and how incredibly toxic that behaviour can be. Breaking myself of the bad habits I'd learned was extremely hard, and even these days I'm still prone to shortage thinking now and again, but mostly what it's made possible is the recognition that sometimes more money isn't what I really want. These days, I'd be willing to take a pay cut to do something interesting and good with my life. I just don't know what that looks like right now, or even if the position exists.

I started a full time position in a financial investments office. I trained for about 10 months and my mentor, who had been there 10 years, retired. It scared me to death being there at the helm. I am feeling a little more confident but it is the most challenging position I have ever had. I have met wonderful teachers and am grateful for the challenges.

My husband is finally working here, with no much traveling and seems to be solid. That has relieved us all from a huge stress. Me especially. The idea that maybe soon we'll be back on our feet financially brings tears to my eyes.

We have decided to get married. I hope it really happens.

My disabled son left school. He has started at a very small college that prepares them for a larger one. It was the end of an era as he was nearly 20 when he started the new one. What next for him? The future with him is something I dare not consider too far.

Our youngest married this year and had a child. Our family is growing so big. My cup overflows When I see them all at church. It's also nice that we are able to travel now that the kids have grown up.

My grand daughter got married and my grandson and his wife had their second child. The additions to my family has given me more people to love.

A major milestone that happened with my family this past year is that my dad is leaving. This has affected me deeply. I kind of talked about it in one of the questions from yesterday or the day before. Dealing with this situation has brought out the worst sides of myself, and challenged me to find patience, acceptance, and compassion. It's caused me to tense up inside, in a way that I'm really trying to calm down and soothe. I've been wanting him to leave, but it's affected my perception of my dad and made me resentful. I hope to continue to move past just acceptance and toleration that he is leaving, and move towards genuine joy and happiness for him with this woman and her family. I need to learn how to accept and smile, genuinely at, what I don't understand and it is really fucking hard. It's so hard to be happy and want to hear about his time with her when I just can't separate it from the circumstances and how strange it seems. I need to take away the judgment. This situation, though not directly my journey, has really made me question myself and really moved me to a place of self-study and questioning which is really molding me on my own journey.

It may not be a milestone but it is something that significantly affected our family.My father in law,my sons Grandfather suddenly passed away this April in another state.This may not seem significant to some as I have been divorced for 12 years but our families have remained close intentionally.My sons father is a wonderful man and had recently been engaged.I thought it would be best not to attend the funeral as to give him and his fiance that time with the family and my son.It gave me time to gather my thoughts on how to explain death to a teenager,not to mention sudden death.How do you explain to a teenager about how to deal with regrets,being grateful,living life to the fullest.I dont have all the answers and I dont have much guidance in this physical life but I do know that I trust my G-d will be by our side.

To acknowledge our blessings around my girlfriend being diagnosed with breast cancer at 40 years old, the best possible outcome was received. Clear lymph nodes and chemotherapy was not presented as an option for treatment. If it was manifest to not go through the sickness and poison of chemo, we chose the mood swings from Tamoxifen that were balanced out with Effexor. Our beloved woman also chose a double mastectomy even though the cancer was only found in one breast. She is still a symmetrical angel continuing to live a life full of purpose in serving God and others.

Both of my parents turned 70. Even though they both seem young it's made me think about their mortality.

My parents celebrated their 70 th wedding anniversary we r blessed to have them with us hopefully for many years to come

Another family member of mine died of cancer this year. My aunt, who was vibrant, active, healthy (seemingly), and the matriarch of the family, was diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer in March and died in July. It was astonishing how quickly she went downhill. I was able to attend her wake and funeral and I was struck by the sheer volume of people who attended or paid their respects via Facebook, and I couldn't help but contrast this with my step-father's death last year, which almost went unnoticed. It made me think about family and involvement in the community, that I want to have an impact on those around me so that when I die (hopefully not for another 60 years or so), I will have family, friends, and colleagues mourning my death. I don't want to be the type of person to just disappear. I'm also wondering what is going to happen to our family now that my aunt is gone. She was the center and the leader. Are the holidays going to keep happening? Are we all just going to go our separate ways?

My mom passed and it's rattled me to my core. I feel like out foundation and touchstone is missing and I worry how that will affect my family going forward and especially my dad. I can't lose him too. I feel lost and like I don't know how I can go on and I know I'm not the only one that feels this way.

My mom was hospitalized again. It made me stronger and helped me learn how to effectively balance and manage work and home responsibilities

My ex-wife passed away suddenly. I can't say that I was as deeply affected as I felt I might or should be, but it had a profound impact on our daughter. We have grown closer as a result, and it that has been a silver lining to me (and hopefully to her).

About 7 or 8 months ago, my brother was diagnosed with Stage IV Non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He's only 48, and has two young sons. He's now gone through chemo, and it seems to have been effective, but it's hard not to worry about it coming back. It's been a really rough year for him--on top of cancer/chemo, he's been saddled with extra work at his job due to other people leaving. And then when he comes home exhausted, he doesn't get to just veg out on the couch--the kids demand his attention. They are UNRELENTING. I don't know where he gets the fortitude; I'd be a gibbering wreck if I were in his shoes. Another consequence of my brother's illness is that it's got me feeling a bit paranoid about my own health. I need to make an appointment for a physical. I honestly have no idea when the last time I had one was. All I can say for sure is that I am long overdue.

My aunt's breast cancer is back and not getting better. I've accepted it, but I've yet to see her in person after the news, and it's gonna suck when she's gone.

My dad had an operation. This is one of the first times where one of my parents showed obvious signs of old age. They couldn't go camping for a while so for a little bit it seemed as if they would have to adjust to this ailment. Luckily he recovered well in the end but it took quite a while and it made me realise they are indeed getting older, even if they are super vital and active and sharp. Luckily they are happy together and dealing with things as they come gracefully. Respect.

As mentioned in the answer to question 2, I accepted a new job in the past year, as did my wife. We both moved to a new continent and we've been struggling to deal with the change. It's been difficult. The job hasn't turned out as advertised. The benefits are good but the job is horribly unpleasant. It has made me start thinking too much about the future. I like to be the kind of person who lives in the present time. I don't like to say I live in the moment, because that isn't quite right, but I do like to be happy where I am and I am not. I find myself looking forward to the end of our contracts but that is 22 months away. I don't like to be in this position.

Well Mia and Mark both have finished their freshman year of college and high school respectively. I wouldn't say that either of them did a stellar job, I just know that they are learning and maturing into a young woman and man. If you call maturing learning by mistakes which is what they've done. Marc failed algebra one day and had to repeat it. This school year he's taking algebra 1B in geometry at the same time. I'm praying he makes it through. Thank goodness he's got his cousin to help tutor him. Mia also made a D in geology last fall. She didn't seem to take too many classes last year. She focused on her relationship with Seth and her job at massage envy. However this year she's tape going full-time. I think she's finally realize that her friends all have a full year of college in their belt, while she kind of slacked off last year on the college front.

It's hard to think of anything but the obvious: the birth of my daughter. On the one hand, her existence has given me a heightened sense of focus on what's important. I look at her and I want to do all I can to provide a safe and nurturing home, future, and world for her. That motivates me to work harder and waste less time on bullshit. But on the other hand, it's heightened my frustration and sense of helplessness with regard to all the horrible crap in the world. I can do my best to give her a magnificent childhood, but I can't do anything about climate change, rape culture, or the many crises of capitalism—all of which she'll have to contend with eventually. I guess the best I can do is prepare her for them. No—the best I can do is fight them, visibly, so she knows they're worth fighting, and not just givens to adjust oneself to, but that will take even more strength than I've been able to marshal thus far. But I can't imagine anything more important.

Hmmm, well, my husband got a contractor job last year after many spotty years and horrible interview experiences. And at the beginning of this year became a permanent employee. I had been a contractor for the past 10 years and finally got hired on to the type of position I've always wanted. My son moved to a new school after being at the same school for years. All of this makes us aware of how difficult things can be, how scary new things are and grateful for what we now have and new opportunities.

A really painful falling-out with my daughter. In brief, she strongly disagreed (and heavily judged) a decision I had made in which she felt neglected. Not only was the judgement difficult, but it came at a time when several other painful things were happening, and it was just awful. For the first time EVER in her life, I made a decision without thinking first how it affected her, and wow, was I punished for it. We have sort of stumbled back to normal, but I cannot help feeling that we are normal on the surface, and that this thing is lurking underneath. Her anger and judgement were shocking to me.

Did I mention I became a Grandma? Talk about major milestones! Everything changes in the family when a child is born. Ron and I have new identities as Grandparents, just as Alec and Ashley have new identities as parents. It is especially affecting for us since we are babysitting 4 days a week. It is all consuming and I haven't come back to earth yet. Ron's retirement in January was another milestone and it has been quite a transition. Going from being the only one at home most days to having Ron with me all day every day was tough at first. I know his plans were for us to do things together, sailing, traveling, working on the house. I want those things too, but not every day. As a woman I felt that he wanted to call the shots and I resented it. I had built a nice life of zoos and yoga during the day! Well things have improved greatly since then, we did what we always do...talk about it, analyze the problems and respect each other's feelings and opinions. I still struggle with his bossiness occasionally just as he still does with my self-centeredness. But we love each other.

We became a close, loving and happy family. This has relieved my long-suffering stress of living alone with so many past failures and thinking I would never find the happy, healthy, and stable, loving relationship. Also, having a stepdaughter that I have the blessing of being a parent to, allows me to live out the dream and promise I made as a young teen to be a good parent.

My family had been in a difficult time last year. But we have managed everything well and we are ok now. Hopefully It never happens again :)

As I said in question one, the biggest event of the year, and the biggest milestone for my family, was moving my parents into the memory care facility. That makes the least change for me -- it's more of a shift of primary responsibility for my brother and sister. But for myself, this move eases my worry, because Mom and Dad seem more stable than they've been. It also helps, I think, to disconnect any anxieties about them from concerns about other family members. My sister is free of the multiple burdens she's been wrestling with, my brother is taking on just part of that, so while this isn't easy on him, it's not as hard on him as the situation was for Carey. And all of that also makes my visits to see Mom and Dad easier.

The wedding has made so many things manifest: my new relationship to family, with family members, and to the idea of family. My mom in particular has had to grapple with this new reality, and it has affected me in ways I couldn't have expected. It has drawn me both closer to Steve and to my own conceptions of what a marriage can and should be. It has forced me to set new and better boundaries for myself. It has caused me to re-examine how I think about "rules" and "shoulds." It has expanded my family. Expansion, remember, is both positive and complicated: there's a grey space here that needs to be recognized and honored.

Gus's graduation is the big one, but here are some others: eric winning more awards, Coco getting out of lousy relationship with James and beginning her fourth year at Magnolia School, Roy can't travel anymore, me becoming a general contractor after building a house from the ground up. How does this affect me? Life goes on. It is possible that everyone's going to be okay. And here I had thought that the baseline is that everything's going straight to hell.

First kid off to college. That leaves just me and his brother to deal with psycho-mom

My uncle passed away due to lung cancer complications. He left behind a wife and several children, as well as his parents, siblings, a number of nieces and nephews, and a myriad of friends. They were all deeply shaken, especially his immediate family. Though not responsible for his brother's medical care, my dad was further pained because he felt that, as a doctor, he should have been able to save his brother's life. Per Chinese tradition, the ceremony was about a week long, during which my dad and I moved to my aunt's residence to be closer to the rest of the family for emotional support. His embalmed body was on display in a casket, and we wore predominantly white clothing. Since the Philippines has a high Catholic population, some Catholic practices were present that week as if by default, such as a mass dedicated to his soul. The mourning period officially ended with a rainy, sorrowful tombstone burial – it seemed that even nature wept for our loss. Though I could naught but sympathize with the most mournful, we all supported each other through the emotional turmoil. I was not close with my uncle, so his passing did not affect me greatly; however, many of my relatives – notably, my father and his parents – could naught but feel the lack of his presence, manifested as grief. Despite the torrent of tears, we kept each other afloat through a network of emotional support, and we became a closer-knit family because of it. That week reinforced in me the importance of strong relationships, something I only knew implicitly beforehand: it is the strength of that bond which carries us through the worst of times.

I guess the biggest milestone was being ordained. I don;t think I've been able to fully appreciate what it means that I am a capital C Cantor now, since caring for my husband is always in front of my mind.

My husband made a midlife career change and graduated from college with a teaching credential in Elementary Education late last year. In August, he was hired at a Title I school about an hour from our house. I'm thrilled that he was able to fulfill his lifelong dream, but this school is challenging and the commute is long. He's exhausted most of the time and often frustrated with the lack of support his school receives. I feel both happiness and fear. I worry that he will become burned out and give up on teaching. Then I question my feelings about my husband. Why don't I have enough faith in him to believe that he will persevere? I'm convinced this is my problem and not his. I do endeavor to support him as much as possible, but I feel a sense of resentment. I work full time myself, and while he was in school, he didn't work. He did little to contribute to the housework burden then, when he had lots of free time. Now, while also working full time, I'm taking care of the household and trying to support him. I do this willingly, but I still harbor some resentment. And this makes me feel like a jerk. I can't talk to him about it because he already has a problem with self esteem and depression. I love my husband dearly. And thus, I am troubled.

After years of trying, we finally got pregnant. Infertility has dominated my life for the last three years and it was a relief, but also a tremendous source of anxiety, to progress from the merry-go-round of doctors and disappointment to the welcome fears of being an expectant parent. This experience has dominated everything from the past year. It impacted my relationships, it drew some people closer to me and pushed others farther away. It helped me and my husband draw inwardly to each other.

I guess Noah dying is something that we all knew would come. Like most deaths, it was easier than I feared. But it also feels insignificant and that doesn't make me feel very good. I don't feel I miss him as I should.

My son was born! Asher Russell. Added so much more happiness to our lives.

My family moved into a new house and my step siblings are moving to Chicago.

My mom died last March. It was a real nightmare in all ways. I ended up missing a week of classes and having to go home and make funeral arrangements. I'm too young to have to be making funeral arrangements for my own mother. I miss her so much every day. She was the Lorelei Gilmore to my Rory Gilmore. It was us against the world. It did bring me even closer with my family - particularly my aunt and uncle who have basically taken me in,

We had a huge family reunion at Myrtle Beach to celebrate my aunt's 70th birthday (or 75th?), and we all had a great time and it was wonderful for my love to get to know them all. Then we all got food poisoning and were wiped out for a week. I suppose the other biggest family milestone would be my gal moving in with me. She's getting used to living in a household where nobody yells at her and everyone supports her for the first time in her life. I'm trying to get used to her craving for more elaborate meals (she's a serious cook) and meal plans, and we're all of us dancing around norms of housework and cleaning and so on. A big step, and it's involved a lot of work and flexibility and domesticity and renting a storage space and so on, but it's all gone well.

Sofía. She changed us from being a "couple" into a real family. I transformed from being a "responsible son" to a "learning father". I have grown from this transition and become more aware of my responsabilities as a father and as a family member. It also made me change my perspective towards other people's problems, and learnt the stress any minor problem of our children can cause.

My husband turned 80. There have been moments of fear, denial, upset, & many thoughts in my head about finding a therapist to get some guidance from. As soon as I discussed it, the fear seemed to dissipate. It was all of the nonsense in my head that was so upsetting. The reality is he is totally healthy, vibrant, young looking & acting & has some short term memory loss. I'm 13 years younger and so do I. It feels so much better to look right across the table and see that everything is ok!

My son went to college. It makes you reflect on your mortality, your memories of that time in your own life. Pride. Wistful.

Obviously, Mom's death. Dad's girlfriend. My extensive travels. I expected my mom to die. i knew it would be hard. I never expected the shifts in my family or my dad dating the family friend. I feel like I don't have much of a family, which is really hard after 29 years of thinking we were the closest a family could be. I realized things always change and there has got to be something positive that will come out of this. But right now, it only feels very sad and very lonely. I miss my mama.

My son has made some real gains, it was a very hard year with him almost needing to be hospitalized for his depression, anxiety and OCD. He (and Eric) worked very hard in therapy and it cost me a year's savings but Zach being okay really all that matters to me, all the rest is insignificant when your child is hurting. Eric's family still doesn't welcome him in their life and Eric doesn't have the strength or possibly "want" to make this change. He leaves Zach and spends every holiday in Tennessee and this breaks my heart and I believe hurts Zach deeply. I often think if Zach could meet someone else, maybe a little older and more established that Zach would be in a better place overall. Also, my niece who is Zach's age married this fall and seeing so much love and best friends declaring their committment affected me in two ways, I was so happy for her but it made me realize my loneliness and wish I had that in my life. I have never had this in spite of two marriages and an eight year relationship. This makes me sad.

Both kids entered "real" school. Somehow, this idea that a chapter of our life as a family had ended and a new one had begun gave me the mental freedom to entertain opening a new chapter for myself.

Separating from my husband and having the kids now live with just one parent has been huge. The kids have seemed to have flourished in the last year with the absence of conflict, but they still miss the hourly contact with their dad (although they see him daily).

My brother moved out of my parents house and I moved back in. Once I got back from Thailand I was in and out of my parents house for anywhere from 2 days to 4 weeks at at time. Now my brother has his own place (a big step for him as he's about to graduate college) and I'm officially back for the foreseeable future. Its been a lot of transition for the way our house runs and this past summer all four of us under the same roof for the first time in a long time.

My mother, at almost 85 years old, finally admitted she needed assistance. Once I got over the 'I told you so's, I felt great relief. There is a lot to do, but it has brought us siblings together in a new and productive way that we haven't experienced together.

My brother and his wife bought a house, their first home together this year. I am happy for them and they totally deserve but the selfish side of me feels like the loser sibling in my family of 5 siblings. I feel like my family is coming to my rescue and I recognize that they all do it to be kind I just still feel like a hamster in a hamster wheel working hard but going no where. It makes me sad and I feel deeply depressed not so much because they have a home but because I feel like my husband and I will never get there. It's feels so defeating.

Youngest child graduated seminary, which effectively means she graduated high school, and turned 18. It's a relief that I raised her -- and all the rest -- to adulthood without starving anyone to death. But it's melancholy and bittersweet to have no more "children" to raise. I have sons and daughters, but they're not children anymore, and that changes who I am.

This past year, I discovered my sisters were maintaining a friendship with one of my ex-girlfriends (with whom they previously had no relationship) and were routinely disrespecting my wife and our marriage in doing so. They showed no remorse or even a trace or shame and claimed they were doing nothing wrong. Without hesitation, I cut them both out of my life and moved on. At times, I think about them and miss the people they once were, but I can't pretend to be okay with the things they've done and said. My wife is my partner, and together, we are a package deal. She had done nothing to warrant any of this disrespect from them. It's disappointing to me because we were all raised together. My parents instilled in us all the same values, but in my sisters, I see selfishness and a lack of empathy. They are bad people, and I don't wish to have any relationship with them until they can admit what they did was wrong, cut my ex out of their lives, and apologize for their behavior. I would never do to either of them what they have done to me.

Does cancer count as a milestone? That's obviously been the big family thing this year. It has made our family a bit closer, not that we weren't close before. We were supposed to have a sister trip this year - all three of us. At the last minute, middle sister canceled. Little sister and I (plus husband) still went, but the whole point was to go together. I was disappointed, and I think I'm still disappointed even though it was a few months ago. But it was a trip to visit our aunt and uncle in California, who we don't see very often. So it was still family-centric, and still enjoyable. Now I really owe the husband a trip for just the two of us.

We finally bought our own home. We have had horrible renting experiences and found a home that I like, but not sure I love yet. It was the most stressful time it seems in a very long time but hopefully it will be a blip on the timeline of our family and we will all be very happy here.

Patrick dealing with Janaki's suicidality. It continues to play out. I feel honored to be able to help. However, it is taking extra effort to hold my compassion and patience for Janaki. I would like my brother to be free of this burden.

My brother graduated from college. The youngest biological sibling of six and he is the first to have a college degree. On one hand, I am profoundly proud of him. He has accomplished so much and has such a bright future ahead of him. He's in a long-term relationship at the age of 22. He has a savings account and a car. He makes rational decisions and doesn't seem to have all of the idiosyncrasies, neuroses, emotional problems the rest of us seem to... On the other hand, it makes me feel really shitty about myself. I'm the oldest. That should have been me. I was the first to go to college but I failed. It makes me feel like a worthless loser to know that my baby brother is almost 11 years younger than I am and is already making more money than I make. It makes me feel like a failure. It makes me want to blame other people or the world for the circumstances I've found myself in throughout my adult life. It just isn't fair. Truthfully, it just makes me feel really sorry for myself when I let myself lose sight of the pride I have in him.

Sammy turning 2. He's progressed to a whole new level, which is wonderful, but he's also pushing more buttons and testing me too. Pushing me to think about the parent I want to be with him.

I graduated high school and converted

My son entered middle school. I am proud of him for growing up and assuming new responsibilities. I am also worried about him and really want him to be able to do this, all the classes, different homework assignments, keeping himself organized. It is a really big challenge to figure out how to be the best possible parent - when to step in and help, when to step out of the way; when to say something, when to keep quiet; what to say if words are needed... It's hard being a parent and watching your child grow, especially if they have some issues that make them not completely main stream.

I established my own household, after divorcing. Rory and I are on our own and while this year hasn't been easy, it has been one of the most liberating, transformative things I've ever done. I never knew I could manage on my own...and while I've needed help, sometimes frequently, I'm amazed at how far we've come together, my boy and I.

My Grandson Max turned 13 and had a Bar Mitzvah. Though My parents were Jewish we were very reformed and so we didn't celebrate the "becoming a man" thing. Our Temple was called a Temple, not a Synagogue, and we attended services on Sunday rather than Saturday. We celebrated a few of the big holidays and I was married by a Rabbi, but somehow didn't feel compelled to make sure that my children were Jews, yet my daughters married Jewish men. What made my grandson's Bar Mitzvah a milestone, was that his ceremony was at the temple I just described, and though I've not practiced the religion, and replaced it with my own spiritual practice, I found a new respect for those who follow the faith, while I follow thee Buddha's faith

My girlfriend father - we thought he was dying - he let us paint his toenails rainbow. This resulted in a lot of trips up and down, a lot of gratitude for myself, that I don't have to be on a ventilator, a lot of fear about getting older that I don't want to think about just yet. Bring on the nanobots please. Meanwhile, grateful for small things, like the ability to squeeze hands. I wish I could have been there for my father. I hope I can be there for my mother, my friends, and everyone.

Dad said he was going to support me ...then he bailed...better for me though cuz God has supplied through other means. I will go back to school but not with dad's money or help.

e. My cousin married her love and I was a bridesmaid. The wedding took place in January at Joubert Tradauw in Barrysdale. It was a beautiful event that ended with us dancing barefoot under the stars. Her wedding and relationship has helped me realise that I want to find love and commit to growing my love for myself and for other people.

Signed my first lease all on my own with my boyfriend. On my own meaning no parental guidance, which is funny cause now we are moving to another place where we need a guarantor, HELLO DADDY....

So far, this hasn't really been a year of milestones per se. The biggest thing we're going through as a family is that my sister has struggled with infertility, and even though I'm conflicted over her marriage and desire to get pregnant, my heart breaks for her ongoing suffering.

My daughter began to travel throughout Europe by herself... with a backpack. She has been gone a year, with a brief trip home to celebrate my husband's 60th birthday. This has had a profound impact on me and on our whole family. For me, it has been the ultimate test of letting go. My daughter has had issues with depression and anxiety, and I worried about her health and safety abroad. To my surprise (and, frankly, to hers) she is not just doing okay. She is flourishing. I am relieved, happy and hopeful. I also deal with missing her terribly and trying not to be a noodge. All good opportunities for growth, really.

My wife got a job that she loves with coworkers she loves doing something she believes in. Our youngest started middle school at a new, visionary school and her personality has never shone brighter. Our son was accepted into an elite program doing what he loves that will be a lot of work with a lot of reward. I finished my schooling and landed a job at an elite firm. I'm extremely proud of my family and the life we're building. It's provided me with a lot of perspective that's allowed me to see further into my future than I ever have before.

The major milestone within my family would be reconnecting with some family members (a few which are very immediate family) after not speaking for 6 months when I came out as bi-sexual. It has affected me in many many ways, our relationship has now become tarnished and despite the attempts it will never be how it was before. That in itself is a hard blow. Also the adjustment of family accepting and respecting my partner.

hm. i am my own family. surviving 2 heart attacks is a huge milestone. discovering my genetic issues from research has me looking at potential issues. discovering that i'm .3% west african amazes me.

I've learned to set boundaries so I am not as vulnerable.

Two big milestones this year. 1. Got engaged. A wonderful step, but not a change. We loved each other before and still love each other after. I proposed because I want to be married, and that comes next year. 2. Bought our first house. This was a bigger change than I expected. I didn't realise how much more it would feel like a home. Life is centred on a place now, not just on people. It has taken root and is growing. That's exciting.

The only major milestone I can think of is my sister's yahrzeit - this year marks five years since she died. How has it affected me? That's a dumb question. Is there any way that it HASN'T affected me? Everything is different and the same. And that's what sucks. The further away I am from that moment when she was still alive, the longer I've lived my life without her. Someday, I'll have lived longer WITHOUT her than I lived WITH her. I'm in no rush to approach that day.

My daughter, age 20, got a tattoo, in Hebrew. It says, "This too shall pass," which I would often say as we talked to help her through times of distress in her teens and earlier. It means a lot to me that it is something she recalls and has become important enough to her that she wants to have it permanently on display, literally as part of who she is.

My parents are finally buying a house! I'm excited for them and can't wait to visit them after they have settled in m

My sister moved back to the US after spending a year in Thailand and, before that, a year in China. She's now living with my parents while she tries to pay off her student debt, and I really appreciate getting to spend more time with her. Now, I can not only visit my parents, but also my sister. It's been a long time since the whole family's been together for long periods of time. This is something I used to take for granted, but my sister's long absence has made me cherish the time together even more.

My sister got engaged. This made me happy and excited, but also nervous -- I'm only two years younger than her, so am I supposed to have already met my husband- (or wife-) to-be by now? It makes me nervous. Right now I'm in a relationship that I have a lot of doubts about. I don't want anyone to compare my path to hers and feel that she is more successful, or more adult, or more desirable --when in truth we are on such different timelines. But I guess I'm the only one who is thinking those things.

My only daughter got engaged! This has brought much happiness to our family and a bright outlook for our futures.

I got married on April 2, 2016. My partner and I have made vows, including pizza every month for him, to be a family and be dedicated to each other forever. At first, being married didn't feel different from living together or dating. There was some irritation around changing my name--logistically, it was a pain in the butt, and then... I felt a little like my identity was slipping. I still don't know who "old first name, new last name" is. I got laid off in July, and I started my new job with a new name. I see my new name everywhere, and people call me by my new name. I'm in this weird transition stage--my entire life until April 2, 2016, and now. Aside from the name change, being married is something unexpected and also... still exactly the same as living together. I find myself thinking more like a unit. Some days, I feel resentful, as I know the unit will function better if I pull more weight than my partner. In general, I feel grateful. I am still me, even if I'm this weird new me, and I get to spend the rest of my life with this person. I feel certainty in that. We are beginning to function as a unit, and we are a family of two. We have our own inside jokes, "Some people don't like pickles," and we are moving in the same direction together, complementing each other.

My oldest sister and her husband both passed away. My other sisters and some of my brothers have been very supportive. Although I inherited everything that my sister owned, I realized that although it is rightfully mine, that I would much rather share it with the rest of the family than keep it to myself. This is, I believe, the direct result of how we were raised. My parents instilled some deep and lasting values in their 9 children. MOST of us have retained those values. I was very close to my oldest sister, we lived close by, and I was able to be there for her through some difficult times, as she saw me through some difficult times. I've learned that my family remains very important to me.

My brother was accepted to college and then went to college! It's also a milestone, because I think he's doing a lot of growing and maturing, and I'm really proud of him.

One of the many milestones for me this past year - was telling my daughter (after having gone through her making 5 suicide attempts in as many months - that I would no longer go to Accident & Emergency with her if she did it again. I told her (and I really meant it) , that I would go to her funeral if I had to but I would never go to A & E again if she made another attempt. She did do it again and it was the worst one - I didn't go to the hospital. She hasn't done it again so far. The hardest thing I've ever had to do as a parent.

The most major milestone was us going from a family of two to a family of three. Where once we could be pretty damn selfish in our thoughts and deeds, we now have to always, ALWAYS consider the impact of the third. I remember last year telling my husband that it was going to be like having a total stranger suddenly become our roommate, but not contribute anything to the household expect expenses. But it hasn't really been like that. It has been a huge adjustment, but not a negative one.

My father has been diagnosed with the condition which will almost certainly end his life within the next few years. It's a lifestyle-related illness, and one about which he's been warned repeatedly. I am torn between feeling desperately sorry for him and intense frustration that he never, ever thought of the long-term... and he's now learning that it really wasn't worth it. Because he's pretty miserable, and dreadfully unprepared to face mortality.

Mom broke up with Mike after 18.5 years together and it would have come out of left field for me, had she not talked about it beforehand with her sister, who then blabbed to MY sister. Even still, when the day came and she did the deed, it felt like a punch to the gut and it left me feeling really angry and upset with Mom for the way she (mis)handled it. More than a month later and Mike is still somewhat disoriented by the whole thing. It made me question how similar I am to Mom with respect to relationships. As much as I understand my mother (which isn't much) to have her own feelings and traumas and history of issues she grapples with, I hope I treat people more humanely than the cold, matter-of-fact way she dealt with Mike. It served as another example of how major changes in relationships in my life have thematically been dealt with by simply being told to "get used to" them, without exploring feelings or being encouraged to process reactions to them. This was the same. Mom and Mike are no longer together. We don't talk about it. We don't ask questions. We simply go on with things as though it's business as usual. Having just had our first family holiday dinner without Mike, it was obvious he was missing and yet, no one said a word.

My ex-brother went through facial reconstruction surgery and is now my sister. And I was there for it. I was glad to be there, but it was harder for me than I thought because I am scared of all the hatred out there, and the way the surgery works, you look like you have been severely beaten. It was painful to see her like that. I am terrified. I have to admit I'm terrified.

Next week my sister will be getting married; this feels like a huge milestone. On the one hand, I am so pleased that she got here. I remember her desperate to find someone and so miserable. It gives me huge joy to see her in love with someone who is really well-suited for her. I am also pleased that she's embraced motherhood the way she has. On the other hand, I feel like I'm losing her once and for all to her upcoming suburban, married life. I know I never really 'had' her but it's hard to see her moving forward whilst I still feel very single and often fairly lonely.

Mom is finally recovering from her fall in December of 2015. It has taken almost 6 months for her to be mainly healed. As she ages, I feel her slowly slipping away in a sense. Not that she has died but she isn't the strong, totally independent woman she was 10 years, or 20 years ago. Her aging has reminded me, in a very visible and visceral way that time waits for no one, we all age. If we are smart we will enjoy the time we have.

I'm happier, content ? I wish I lived on my own and had my own place and my own things - but I love being around them, but I also want to travel - but it's this love and welcoming that I've received while coming home is something that's made me incredibly ... better ? as a person. I don't know the right word. It's like, I drive up to the house, and I am welcomed, and my mom smiles and we talk for a little while, and I know that she means what she says, and that she loves me, and dad loves me too. and it's home and family that's been so many years in the making. I think that that's a milestone? maybe not for all of us, maybe just for me, but I've been living for so long thinking that they're looking after me b/c it's the christian thing to do - but i think that they're just doing it because they love me.

My dad died in July. It was unexpected and quick. It has affected my tremendously. I place such a high value in my relationships with other people. Friendships, family relationships. Spending time with people that you love is far more important than anything else you can do in life.

My mother started a new relationship with a wonderful man. It's given her so much joy, it makes me so very happy. It also has relieved me of much of the pressure to be her sole source of emotional support, and for that, I am so grateful

I turned 45. I think I have accepted the undeniable reality of my mortality. I think the fear is gone.

Granny moved to Burlington from Sparta. I'm grateful I get to have her close again.

Not yet - not QUITE yet - but husband is turning 65 next month, and we have been researching Medicare and all things Medicare for the past several months (I say 'we' but it is really 'me'). We've also just purchased Long Term Care Insurance for the two of us. And we are cutting back on a variety of things in anticipation of moving in another year or so - reducing our outgo, dropping subscriptions, and taking a hard look at what we spend our money on, and whether it is actually what we want to be spending our money on....this is less of a 'milestone' at this point than a change of seasons in our lives. The 'milestones' will be NEXT year, as both of us reach Medicare and shortly after that, the magic of 'Full Retirement Age'. Big big changes on the horizon. This year is just - a kind of foreshadowing - suddenly we have realized how close these 'future' events actually are.

Adam moved into a NICE apartment (out of the slum he was in), and also got a new job in his field! It has made us incredibly happy for him and his future!

My youngest brother got married, his wife got pregnant, they had a miscarriage, and then got pregnant again. Their wedding was lovely though going to it was stressful and made me think more about my own marriage. It's not what I want it to be. There isn't warm fuzzies or deep connection and the love that is almost always present at weddings is not present in our relationship and I think people see that and I don't like it - but I also don't like that we aren't connected like we used to be and I want to fix that. The miscarriage was so hard for me because I specifically prayed that it wouldn't happen to them and it's really easy for me to think of God as an adversary who tests us instead of just a being who probably doesn't really intervene in our lives that much, and certainly isn't out there trying to set us up for shit. I also didn't know how to be properly supportive and felt really helpless. Now I'm not sure how to respond to their pregnancy. I'm excited for them but I know they're worried too, and I want to be excited without negating what happened and their loss before, and it seems overly complicated and I don't even know if it's my place to try to juggle this. Plus I'm just tired. Thinking about all of this makes me so tired.

It sounds very weird, but the milestone my family reached last year was a trip to Paris. This trip was my mom's freedom from my stepfather dominance over her, and also his freedom from his own fears. It was the first time in 15 years that my mom had the courage to do something she wanted to do and they fought a lot over it. In the end, he decided to join her in her trip, despite his growing fear of travelling and leaving his confort zone. He nows respect my mom much more in the daily life. He is more excited about travelling (my mom's great passion) and she is respecting herself much more. It was a family revolution and I am grateful to have contributed for that ( by planning my mom's trip for her).

Well, like I said I'm PREGNANT! It's a girl and the girls weren't super happy at first, they wanted a lil brother, but now they are getting really excited! All 3 of the girls have been very understanding to my hormones and cravings. Brandon especially has been handling me very well even though sometimes I don't think so nor do I give home enough credit for it. I'm super happy and can't wait to meet our little Olivia Lynn Parker!!

I see this is going to be a lot about turning 65. It's affected me a lot. Seeing the stop sign ahead. When will I retire. Where will I retire. How do I want retire. What do I want to do with the rest of my life. What about death. It's coming for sure. Lots of memories swirling around these days. Seeing how I've aged. Glad to be healthy but sad to hear it when others are not. Turning 65 launched me into a true existential crisis. No kidding around. And it was tough sledding there for awhile. But I continue to work with it. And I've experienced joy and happiness in ways I never have. Truly appreciating just being alive. I've heard that it was something that could happen. And it is happening. Embracing the sadness of eventually leaving this existence for an unknown other. But it's not personal. Happens not just to everyone alive but to everything alive. So it's Life.

We traveled with the grandkids. We had them all to ourselves for a whole week from the Four Seasons to magnificent national parks including hiking the Grand Canyon and horseback riding down into the carved, almost statuary like Bryce Canyon. Wow! It deepened our relationship a bit. We are so concerned about staying in the hearts of the kids as one is now a fast-growing teen with all the angst and disruption that goes with that. It makes me wonder about whether these will be the only next generation, as our daughter and other son are not near to getting married nor starting a family soon. I am still processing how I feel about that.

I think this has to be the birth of our daughter. On the one hand, I'm ecstatic. She's healthy and such a joy. And a much easier baby; I do think it's somewhat healing for me to have such a positive postpartum experience this time. It's also sad for me to think that I won't be pregnant again. Aaron doesn't want a 3rd child, and intellectually I'm not sure it's a good idea to have 3 (I don't think we have the time/energy to devote to 3 children. Plus I want to start "leaning in" to my career). But I *love* being pregnant and having a baby is such a special thing. As time consuming and annoying as breastfeeding is, I will miss it when I wean my daughter.

Mom was diagnosed with cancer this year, after a long period of being in constant pain. There was a scary surgery and lots of treatment, and the cancer is now inactive. This year, more than ever, I'm feeling grateful for my family (especially my mom). It's just so nice to be with them and the support of my brother, dad, aunt have been crucial. As hard and terrible as this is, I think we have gotten a lot closer to each other and it is nice (at least) to have people to go through this with. I think about death a lot more than I used to. I miss my mom a lot more than I usually used to - the cross-country distance feels more and more upsetting. Also my parents moved yesterday!

My twin step daughters had their b'not mitzvah this year. It reminds me that we are connected and that I am an important influence in their lives, at the same time that we still have a separation. I felt involved but not very involved, and that is OK. Also reminds me why I raise my daughter to grow up with a more meaningful and involved relationship to Judaism, even if she dislikes Hebrew school!

Oh, yea, moving to a new state has been the best decision and action of my life

nothing major has happened. We are all still alive and in the same places. Maggie hasn't started grad school, Kaitlin is almost done and engaged. Hard to imagine her being a bride, but since she has asked for a 9 year engagement, I am not stressing about that. Mom' s health goes down, but she is 85, so what else is there? I changed jobs, for the better I guess. I needed to not be where I was, so that is good. Not as busy as I would like, since there is a bonus structure and I had hopes to earn a new deck, but such is life.

My dad and mom spending time together. It made me realize more and more that you can love someone and they can still be a bad fit for you.

Again with the milestones... I lost my damn job and that sucked. BUT it's given us the guts for me to go out on my own and that place (my old office) seems to be burning to the ground... which is sad for a Jewish non-profit. However, for me, it's given me freedom and the career I actually wanted without the toxic drama.

This year, after years of bitterness and resentment I attempted to establish a relationship with my sister. I began by texting her and we had a few phone calls after. When I asked a few months later if we could meet up she at first told me yes, took a 12 day disappearance and then text me back to tell me it wouldn't work out but we could maintain a distant text relationship. I felt incredibly hurt and after years of blaming myself for our interactions I was able to see I am not fully at fault for other peoples actions. I am sad that I will not be able to establish a loving relationship and have the sister I hoped for but I accept that life gives you what it does and its up to you as to how you deal with it, and in this case, I deal with acceptance and the ability to move on and no longer wonder "What if..."

I guess "our wedding" will be my answer to many of the questions this year. That and "Chris's cancer". I am still figuring out how it has affected me. In some ways nothing has changed and in other ways it is profound. I still have moments of being surprised that I am a married woman. I remember the years when Chris wanted more space and am amazed at how different things are now. How did he change so profoundly? How do I catch up with that?

My mother has possibly lost her ability to continue to live independently. I have become her caretaker in really uncomfortable and difficult ways. I am in the process of determining if it is appropriate to seek conservatorship of her or not. It is overwhelming and hard and brings up many conflicts from the past as I have to engage with her weekly to support her. There are no other close by relatives to help in person though they sometimes help over the phone with emotional support or via financial support. I am frustrated that as the youngest child I have seemingly been left with the most responsibility to take care of her. It has created tension between family members, deepened resentments, and also allowed new opportunities for us to address old harms and hurts with one another and find some new healing. I am hoping we can transition her into this new time in her life safely and without more harm to any of us but know that some amount of harm is inevitable because the process is so incredibly long.

To do this without crying...oye. The biggest change has been my daughter growing up. She's almost 18. Our only child, currently. Her and I were really tight, we still are but between school, work, ministry, internship and now she has started dating so ...time has been limited. All good things and I could do spiritual cartwheels she is with a believer who walks the walk. God's kept me very busy with my new job - so grateful. Because this transition has been extremely difficult. It's not over yet either, she more than likely is going to North Point Bible College next year, living on campus. Feeling a little like Hannah with Samuel...

Perhaps two milestones for us this year. The first anniversary of moving our adult daughter into a home of her own. Yes, it affected us financially and will for years to come, but as we had hoped, it has helped her to get a better grip on her life and is helping her heal. She has a "sanctuary" now, a place that feels like her own even if we own it and are paying the mortgage. I see so much positive change in her in the past year. I think her "sanctuary" is responsible for a good measure of that. It has given her more energy to put into managing all her health problems and an incentive to carry on. The second milestone is that my husband finally became a grandad, and I, a grandma by law...complicated with children from previous marriages. Deciding what to have this little one call me was a challenge with two "blood" grandmas getting first dibs. One went with Nanny and one with Memi (sp?). I chose BeeGee, reversing the "grand" and my first initial. It seems right for Grandad's second wife. I will never be a "blood" grandma since my daughter can't have children. She isn't able to adopt either. My sister shares her five grandchildren with me, but they are too far away for me to be part of their lives. I might actually be some kind of presence in this new little one's life. I am grateful to the parents for easily including me.

My sister got a job at a synagogue in Miami and left her job in New Orleans. I was really proud of her for recognizing that she had stagnated and that it was time for something new, but it makes me realize that I am experiencing much of that myself. While I spent a lot of time abroad this year, I came back to Atlanta to the same old lifestyle, and I am ready to take the first opportunity to move on.

My sister is expecting her second baby and I could not be more extatic.

The birth of my niece, the very first grand baby for my parents! This bundle of joy has been an absolute blessing for my folks, who have had a very hard year. I can't believe how much happiness that little girl generates!

Well now, this relates to the previous question. We are empty nesters now, and we have embraced it! Both boys are in university, independent, and striving to meet their own goals. We, however, have transitioned quite smoothly into a renewed couple hood involving dinners, weekends together and planning for our future as a couple.

A large milestone was my family moving, although I am over it and it was a little more then a year ago it has made me more flexible.

The death of my grandfather, because it didn't affected me enough and it worried me about how good is my relationship with the rest of my family.

I backslid in allowing my parents to take advantage of me. That ends soon!

When I think of milestones, I think good thoughts. Is there such thing as a milestone being something bad? Well, yes of course there is. How do we progress and move forward without these obstacles and life lessons. My sister is divorced with an almost 5 year-old daughter, living at home with my mother in her apartment. Her ex-husband was caught (yet again) selling drugs and will be sentenced jail time on November 7th (a day before my niece's 5th birthday). Although I moved away from home to begin a life for myself, I can't help to feel bad for the stress my mother and sister go through every day. In their own lives and with each other. I wish I could be there, but I know if I still was, I'd be trapped. Part of the reason I moved away was because I couldn't deal with the fighting and dysfunction anymore. My mother is a great woman and I know she's the best grandmother in the world and would do anything for her granddaughter. Mom is 57 years old and still working two jobs to partially support my sister. It's hard to get that out of the back of my mind, but I know I'm here for a reason, but I love my family and it hurts to see them struggle.

My sister just moved in with me. She's back in MN, found a job here (working in child care, no less!!), and we're all 4 in MN again!! It'll be interesting to see how we are as roommies, but I think it's the best situation for all of us right now.

My grandparents celebrated their 60th anniversary. It made me hopeful that the world has not gone to hell in a hand basket.

Mia started High School :) It has been fun to watch her grow and mature and to work hard in both school and cross country. It was strange to have her enter a school yer that I remember so vividly - the year for me that my parents separated, that Kyle and I met, and that my friendship with Annette was so central. Funny how her being this age brought so many memories to the surface. I am grateful to be a mom- and so happy to walk with all three kids.

My mom finally sold our family home. It was far more emotional than I expected, even though I haven't lived there in years. I felt like I had lost a piece of myself, and my late father. Partially because he did so much work on the house. Despite not living there for years, I still thought of it as a home - not my *main* home but still *one* home. Now I feel like I have nowhere to go. Which is silly, because I'm married and live with my husband. But I guess I always thought, in the back of my mind, if the very worst happens, at least I can go back home. Now I feel slightly unmoored.

My father was fired this year. In my entire life both of my parents have been gainfully employed-- I grew up in a two-income household. As a younger child I saw this as a burden, both my parents had to work to support our family and there wasn't an adult present at home who could do things like pick me up from mid-week play dates or bring cupcakes to my class in the middle of the day, etc. But as an adult, I feel fortunate to have had two adults to show me the importance and value of work. My parents have been able to travel the world, contribute to charities, remodel their house and yards, all because they both worked very hard, and worked hard together. But now my father, just a few years shy of his planned retirement, has been terminated. Given his age and how long he's been out of the "getting a new job" game, it seems quite possible that he won't find a new position, that he's essentially retiring earlier than we all thought. Now, despite their recent travels, my parents have been phenomenal savers, have lived well within their means, and will be fine even if my Dad doesn't go back to work. But they had plans. They were going to upgrade to a nicer house, they were going to travel even more, do even more things. And now they are pulling back. They put three kids through college and then some, they've done all the right things, and now, now when they are so close to achieving those goals towards which they have been working their entire lives, now they have to revert to making choices based on economic frugality. And what's more, my father LOVED his job. His work was, often to the chagrin of my mother, his top priority. He gave so much of himself to his work for 20 years. His work gave him so much. My father is perhaps my favorite person, and seeing him without this huge part of his identity is difficult to watch. He puts on this brave face and makes light of the situation, but then he blind sights me by saying that he thinks he needs a new haircut, and to dye his hair-- because he thinks he looks old. I watch my father passively looking for work, taking his time to apply to new jobs, and eager to let excuses crop up. I see myself in him. I see the part of me that hates rejection so much I would rather not put my hat in the ring than risk losing. So I guess that it's affected me by humanizing my father. The man I have always held in such high esteem, to almost mythical levels. And I don't think I needed my opinion of my father to be humbled. No, I don't like this at all.

We have moved to Shark Bay, basically. Impact was/is super dooper. Great lifestyle. Simple, honest. With the creature comforts and some travel. Daughters in and out here as well. All good!!

My aunt came over and my mom went bat-shit crazy. My mom estranged her a lot of years ago because a bunch of drama with my grandma getting cancer and my aunt's unplanned son. It would be funny (in that absurd way) if it weren't so fucking scary and awful to have your mom and your aunt screaming at each other. This lead to me and my sister having a long in-the-night talk about our weird family politics, and how our crazy families have changed our lives.

I started to write about my mother's falls and fractures again, but am going to instead focus on something positive. My oldest niece was engaged to her boyfriend last July, following a particularly shitty spring. My niece also completed her Masters program, got her first "real" job, and moved out of state (closer to her fiance, which delights me). All milestones, all good things.

My son has a Baby girl and she's lovely.

Grandma died. And it's odd that her death somehow made me so much more aware of the dysfunction in that side of the family. Dysfunction that I've always known was there (or at least since I've been ad adult), that I've discussed with Leslie and that is not a surprise...but somehow with Grandma's health deteriorating and seeing how incapable everyone around her was to advocate for her and face realities and just step up, it really hit me how broken they all are...and it pissed me off...it brought my feelings of disdain for weakness front and center. I could intellectually appreciate where all that pain and trauma (and spinelessness) derived from, but it pissed me off that they couldn't just fucking step up and do what needed to be done...what Grandma deserved to have done for her in her final days. And it made me very sad for her path to death but also actually mad at Grandma herself for her complicity, for her contribution to it all. When Omi died I felt nothing but respect, and love and appreciation, including for her flaws. And I felt so good knowing that she died among caring family members who ensured she had the best care, that aligned with her wishes and that allowed her to die when it was time, among family. When Grandma died she did not get that kind of smooth transition, which pains me on her behalf. But I also felt resentment and anger and disappointment at her flaws...which she was never able to recognize, some of which she maintained (like comparing her two daughters, leaving one always falling short), until she died. When Omi died it was wonderful to acquire some of her possessions...what treasures that let me feel closer to her. When I acquired Grandma's things, it felt like more of a family obligation than a blessing or a need. I'm hoping that over time I can let go of some of those negative feelings and appreciate the pieces of her that I have.

My sister moved back home after 40 years away. She's already decided that she wants to go back, even tho she really is loving living back home. I feel bad that she will probably return to a lonely life. She is waiting for the bluebird of happiness to land on her shoulder.

My dad lost his job for the second time in 6-7 years. I was worried out of my mind because last time he was laid off, it took 15 months for him to find work again. But, that was during a recession. Luckily he found work after just 2.5 months. Also, my little brother graduated high school! We are extremely close and now we go to the same university. It's nice having him around, but at the same time it's weird because it forces me to acknowledge that we've both grown up.

My dad's parents 50th annerverery and how we all got together.

My uncle, who was the only somewhat father figure to me in the family, passed away right on my birthday. Since he and my aunt picked me up he was there, ever present, but slowly falling into a depression we couldn't save him from. We tried to get him to quit smoking, but he refused and his COPD worsened. I felt like he was trying to kill himself in the worst way: slowly, right in front of us. First, that I was surprised I wasn't as sad about his death, it was a long time comming and our relationship was less than stellar: for the last three years of his life, our relationship consisted of requests for me to empty his urine jar, or bring him food - that was it. Actually thr last three months he was at a home, that was the most conversation I ever had with him. It's the one thing I don't regret because I felt he saw me as an adult, and we got to speak as adults. Only I had nothing to speak to at the funeral... but I'm glad I could carry him to his resting place - it made sense that to be a palberarer, since my uncle's relationship with me was based on helping him out in one way or another - carrying his wheelchair, carrying his oxygen tank. Second, it made me think of how much of a jerk funeral houses could be - my aunt's husband died, and here you are up selling a coffin? I wouldn't want that for my aunt. I'm scared about how angry I will get... Finally, It made me reconsider how I wanted to die. To see him so frail, gasping for air, barely getting up or enjoying food or company in those last few weeks. There should have been mercy. I hope I will be lucky to have that...I am not scared of death, but instead scared of how slowly I will likely die.

This summer marked Nana's yartzeit. It was so strange to go through the year without her, for the first time I started school without her, we've celebrated holidays without her. I keep wanting to call, wanting to ask mom how she's doing because that's just what I've done for so long. I still miss her and think about her often. When we did her unveiling this summer, it was strange to realize and stranger still to say out loud that we had very few reasons to come back to the North Shore...

I guess the major milestone, not a positive one, is that my father-in-law died. The first death I've directly experienced. Sy's death, as well as my mother's illness, makes me acutely aware of my mortality.

The major milestone for my family - directly applying to my family, was the same milestone as it was for me. I got a job. After 6+ years of looking and crying and fussing and sadness and low self esteem. I finally got a job. How this impacts my family is that once all my savings ran dry - it took 6 years - I had to start living off my own mother's social security income. After all this time, I never asked of her anything at all. I paid for it all. And then, I had to become totally dependent on her. I felt horrible. Even worse than I had before. It took a the support of good friends to help me not feel bad about that. Anyone looking would say sure, she can help pay rent and food - but I had been supporting her for so long, I actually took pride in the fact that she didn't want for anything in her old age, even if I was without a job. So. After living off my 89 year old Mom this past year, I was thrilled when I finally found a job that agreed to hire me. I could stop leaning so much on my Mom. I am grateful.

My grandma passed away in December, just two weeks after her 75th birthday. It was hard on the family, as to be expected, but the circumstances of it could not have been more timely. Because it was winter break, all five of her grandchildren in college were able to be there. Even I, who made it down a week into her hospice stay, was able to see her before she passed. My cousins and I got to spend so much time together, something we hadn't done in a while. And her children were able to begin mending a relationship that had been broken for years. It was like she knew the only way to give everyone a fresh start was for her to take measures into her own hands one last time. It was really powerful for me to see all of these things falling into place. It made something that would normally be so heartbreaking have a great amount of peace.

We discontinued the annual fish fry we had hosted for 29 years. It gave me a free weekend, which was mostly spent traveling to a funeral.

The loss of my mother was huge. Then I got pregnant. If I start to think of my family as the family unit I am building with my husband, our pregnancy is certainly a major milestone. It shifts my association of family from my family of origin to the one we are building together. The coming year will tell how we grow and change with a baby in our lives.

We had our 3rd vacation together in August, I was happy because we seem to be doing better as a family and getting along better. It's still kind of new to us, but I was happy to see that we're getting more comfortable with each other and making a vacation that works well for everyone. It's just a step but it's in the right direction :)

Our oldest son (my step son x 6 years) graduated highschool. I had real concerns about him actually moving along and going to college. He's very nonchalant and is becoming an ACOA. His mother died 3 years ago..he was only 11, 12, 13 helping her to bed after drinking and so stressed he would call us at night. He grew up in a different role than I ever had to take on. My husband understood this role but had a turbulent relationship with his alcoholic father. My husband would pray with him over the phone and remind him of the good care and loving that he demonstrated toward his mother. When she died of a successful suicide 3 years ago, he's not quite done the grieving he's needed to do. He brushes it away.."I'm over it." Well, we know what is true but he has gone off to college, can become whoever or whatever he wants to be. No hold backs. He can succeed. No guilt. No responsibility except to do his schoolwork. Were she still alive, would he be different? Yes. I think not in the healthiest ways as a child of an alcoholic. But her absence will also be a lifelong struggle of a different kind. Along with his absence are the 2 younger siblings at home, maturing and leaning on each other more. The eldest calls out to them, which is unusual. A little bit of homesick is alright. Any kid that takes flight out of the nest is a good milestone. For everyone. He's received some of the best advice, support and training to succeed. This includes blessings by our minister who talks to every HS grad and recommends them to Be Curious..try new things, meet people, etc. and to remember that You're Going to Screw UP. Don't be afraid to brush off and try again. Call the family, ask for forgiveness and God will always always carry them through the toughest times of their lives. Families will love and support them through those times as well.

We bought a house. I feel grateful all of the time to have more space and to live in a beautiful. Our neighborhood is safe, diverse, and has excellent schools. This milestone has absolutely improved our quality of life and increased my feelings of gratitude.

Aw I don't want to write about going to college for each response, haha... at the same time, it's sort of inevitable, isn't it? My family has split apart because of it. I feel more distant from them now, and scarily enough it's easy to get used to. I still love them with all my heart, but I've learned that I don't need them in my day-to-day life. That's very weird and it sounds cold and I don't really want it to be like that, I'm still very much a baby, but at the same time I know it to be true. On the other side, my sister and brother are left to fend for themselves without me as the eldest child looking over them haha. The entire dynamics of our family have been scrapped and redone. It's weird, I don't truly know what it's like at home anymore... I can imagine from what they tell me on the phone, but it must be very different. How sad it is to be turning into a stranger to one's own home.

My son "eloped" with the woman he loves and is devoted to, while I stayed home and took care of their daughter. I am so happy and grateful to be able to embrace them in their choices, different as they may be to my own.

Discovery of eternal life possibilities and willingness to live forever as one entity with nature as such. Saving the living planet as a highest priority, though.

My grandmother's partner (my grandad really, in all but blood) passed away in December. For me personally, although he's been there my entire life, I didn't feel that bad about it. Reason being, he restricted my gran from doing a lot of things; he was eternally grumpy, tight with his/their money, and seemed to have a vice-like grip on what my gran did. In a way, his passing felt like a good thing, which does sound awful, but my gran is the person I love the most in this world. Initially I made sure to spend lots more time with her than usual, and resolved to do so going forward. This didn't hold though, and although I do go for lunch with her every month or so, I know it's not enough. She says she gets bored a lot, and when she does I feel so guilty.

Not sure if it's a major milestone but I'm building a nice relationship with Masie & Samuel and improving that with my sister.

We have a new addition in the family--my sister is pregnant! I'm so excited to see my sister become a new mother and I'm also excited for my own mother to finally have dream of being a grandmother come true. I am sad to be so far away from them during this time, so am starting to think when I might move back west.

I decided in January 2016 that if I wanted to get a self-supporting job, I would need to leave Vermont, where I had been living for almost 20 years. It meant moving away from my middle-school aged son, so I explored degree programs that would help me become more employable in Vermont and earn a living wage. I was accepted into a program in NYC. By total coincidence, my son's father--with whom he lives--lost his job in Vermont in April, and ended up relocating to NJ. I moved back home, near friends and family and the city where I had gone to graduate school, my son was in a strange new suburban world. I am grateful that I am returning to a place that feels safe and familiar. I found a wonderful roommate in the Bronx. I joined a gym that I really like. I have applied to two jobs, had two interviews in two days, and am waiting to hear if I get hired. It feels like there are so many more opportunities here. But I am sad about leaving Vermont, which I loved. It is crowded and much more materialistic here. The sense of community doesn't exist the way it can in a town of four thousand or a city of thirty thousand. The natural world is covered with pavement and ugly architecture.

No milestones for me.

My older son started reading chapter books. Devouring them is more accurate. He read the entire Percy Jackson series. Then he read the Kane Chronicles. Then he began to read Tui Sutherland's dragon books. He will sit down anywhere and just start reading. I have never been prouder. This child of mine shares my deep connection to the literary world (particularly my love of fiction and fantasy). When I see him reading my heart swells, and I just want to curl up with him and read my book as well. The best part is the nights when I don't have a lot of extra work to do, we can both stay up reading in our shared king bed, with his little brother asleep between us. We are pretty broke at the moment, so if he says he wants a book, I will drop everything to take him to the library, even if the book he wants is across the county. One day we drove all the way to Half Moon Bay to get books at the library there, and then spent the day at the beach playing soccer, building sandcastles, and reading. That is what I think heaven is; the moments that you will remember being content and without worry with those you love.

Two major milestones. Rebecca is pregnant and expecting the first child in our family in 10 days. Julia and I got married. I think both events added excitement to the family. After the wedding I felt like my family "saw" me and understood my life in a new way. This was super important to me. With Rebecca being pregnant it has sped up the process for Julia and me to take this step.

I became an auntie again my sister had a little boy Alexander. I'm delighted but it has made me think about whether I would like to have kids. After much soul searching the answer is no. Both I and my partner have serious health conditions so I dont think we could risk parenthood. It's nice being an auntie but I don't fancy the full time gig.

The birth of my twins, my first children. On the one hand, I don't feel like much has changed in our lives, and I'm grateful that my husband's and my relationship is stronger than ever. On the other, everything has changed. Our routines, our sleep patterns, the way we look at life, the way we look at life through our children. I am deeply affected by all of their firsts. The way they look at everything with bright curiosity is amazing. I hope that they continue to be patient teachers and continue to inspire me every day.

Nothing really except, I guess, I hit my "Beatles" birthday (will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I'm ....), meaning I"m now getting Medicare info. It does make me think about age & aging & should I get an MRI for a baseline on Alzheimer's & the pure & terrifying knowledge that I'm on the down slope to the grave. But for some reason, I'm not depressed by that but exhilarated - I know so much! I've experienced so much! I've had so many narrow escapes & survived! I've stood up to bullies!

This has been a remarkable year. It began with my youngest daughter's wedding on erev Sukkot. A wonderful event capped with an eclipse of the moon. The day was filled with family and friends. The wedding ceremony was moving, the party fantastic. Then, just before Pesach, my third grandchild was born--a sweet girl named for my beloved grandmother of blessed memory. Between baby-naming and holiday, it was crazy--wonderful and stressful. What an amazing year!

I'm pretty sure I haven't done 10Q for a few years, so I'm actually going to pull two milestones from earlier in 2015. The impact of both of these events continues to unfold in unexpected ways: we welcomed Avery in August 2015, and nearly said goodbye to my dad after his stroke just six weeks before that. That was some powerful 'circle-of-life' stuff. I could feel new life growing inside of me during the exact moments that we were sleeping at the hospital and preparing to comfort dad in his last days. I regretted waiting so long to make him a grandfather. (And then I had Avery, fell in love with him, and regretted waiting so long to become a mother.) The last 16 months have been a storm of joy and vulnerability, plus some emotions that I don't have a name for. Dad got out of the hospital two days before I had Avery. He spent literally hours in therapy every day for months in order to be able to walk again - with a cane, but still on his own. His positivity was infectious during those initial months while he kept improving, but then he hit a plateau (as all stroke patients do) and he kind of gave up. He started gaining weight and losing a lot of the progress that he had made. I was mad at him for not taking care of himself and scared that he was going to cause another stroke. My dad is still here. He and Avery share an amazing connection. In the back of my mind while watching their tender moments together, I mourn that Avery will never fully know the active, able man that I knew. I carry a sense of dread that we are on borrowed time. I feel overwhelmed for my mom who cares for dad full time with no breaks. I feel frustrated when people look at my dad funny in public, sad when he can't tell whether he's gone to the bathroom and asks if people notice, angry when there aren't accommodations for people with disabilities, and ashamed of myself for being upset when I notice that my couch smells in the spot where he'd been sitting. I feel jealous of new parents that have family around who actually lessen the burden of caring for a baby. I feel alternately mad at my mom whenever she expresses a hint of negativity (even though I've had the exact same emotions that she is having), and proud of her because she's so much stronger than I ever imagined she could be. I fear my own mortality and try to predict what tragedies I may face in the years ahead. And then, after all that, I feel guilty for not doing enough, for not spending enough time with them, for not being more patient, or for not being more grateful.

Having our entire family together, including my ex-husband and his current wife was a first time event. It went well and was recorded in a variety of family pictures. I hope this illustrates to the children and grandchildren that forgiveness is a good thing. The genuine hugs and sharing time was encouraging and the adults all commented on that with appreciation.

I planned a 'family' vacation with my daughter and two grandchildren to New York City! It was awesome! We stayed in mid-town between Central Park and Times Square. We took a luncheon cruise to see the statue of Liberty and a subway ride to Harlem to eat at the renown Sylvia's Soul Food and then walk past the Apollo theater. We actually stayed at the Parker LeMeridian next to the Russian Tea Room and Carnegie Hall. This was significant to me having watched from afar during my childhood. Marian Anderson was one the first African Americans (in my lifetime) to perform at Carnegie Hall! Of course I had to share that milestone with my grand children. I so enjoyed spending quality time with them and especially my daughter. I pray this trip is a highlight in their lives as a memory of their first time in NYC!! I love them so much!!

Well, it didn't originate this year, but my mom was diagnosed with cancer in January of 2015. The prognosis was not good - maybe 6 months. We are so fortunate that she is responding to treatment and has the best care. My mom is the most amazing person I know. This disease has brought out her bravery, her kindness, her dignity - in the most subtle yet profound ways. Her wisdom - it's so deep and incredible. I feel so fortunate to have the intense appreciation for her (that I'm not sure is possible without the threat of losing someone) and the opportunity to express how much I love her and how much I think of her. I don't know that I'm doing it enough. She's amazing... and who I look to on how to handle most things as it involves love and the people you care for.

I'd say just about a year ago, my paternal grandmother moved into assisted living an hour from my hometown. I wasn't there when she moved home, lived there for 6 months, became legally blind. I returned after she'd been completely settled and most of her emergencies had come and gone. However, although I was away, it was still a significant time for me. It's a time to be close to and acknowledge the reality of aging. I wonder if my parents found themselves identifying too much with her while they were caretakers. It's not a bad thing, but our culture tends to silence death and aging--they're seen as inconveniences of life. I don't see my grandmother as an inconvenience, but I see how having her so close and dependent has stressed out my parents. I'm really grateful to be so close to her now. I'm taking it upon myself more to try to see her about once a week, take her somewhere, help her in her apartment, or just learn about her. She's not a big story-teller, but I want to know about her family, her youth, her marriage. It make me realize how each person is a collection of stories, which is carried with them when they pass. I suppose I'm looking for a part of myself in her. Or a part of her in me. I'm someone who is very drawn in by culture, yet I have trouble getting a sense of my culture from my grandparents. There must be more to learn then! It was important for me to be here now. After living far away, the desire to immerse myself in my own identity and family grew strong. So, I'm grateful to be close, to have some conversations I wouldn't have had otherwise, and to treasure this time, these moments for exactly what they are. I don't need them to uncover a huge meaningful lesson or satisfy a one-time craving. I just want to feed a feeling of closeness and understanding of the people I call family in this lifetime.

I think the most major milestone was the fact that we had a family vacation that didn't end up with any one of us in tears. When my parents and sister visited me in Hanover for my White Coat Ceremony, we spent a whole day by ourselves in Boston. And we loved it. We laughed, we ate, we actually had a good time. I'm not sure what it was, but I want that to continue to happen. Family is frustrating, and trying to accommodate everyone's needs during that time was tough. But it was incredibly gratifying to see them smile and be happy. I really enjoyed that.

Our family is dealing with the collective realization that we're all getting older and talking about what this means as a family. How are we going to care for aging aunts and uncles? What will the relationships between the cousins look like as the older generation passes? In light of that, one of my cousins and I have begun working on staying closer in touch and developing our relationship. She even had a party this year so that the whole family could get together but not for a wedding or a funeral. We're also about to welcome the first member of the next generation of the family and I think everyone is excited about that.

My brother went to yeshiva. I think it's weird for my family to have one of us living abroad. We've never had that before. I don't feel hugely affected by it - but I feel more alienated from him than before. I don't feel like I know him much. He spoke to me on the phone and he just lectured me with Jewish content for 15 mins and it occurred to me that this is all he does, all day for days and weeks on end. This will be every conversation he has for a year. It felt alien. His world now is so different to mine - his is closing in, his focus is narrowing whereas mine is open and wide. He talks about only one type of thing whereas I want to talk about everything.

I celebrated my first Passover with the Jewish side of my family. It was such a blessing to spend that time with my grandmother, because it's her favorite holiday. To share in her joy....nothing compares. To feel closeness to a part of my family I had been separated from since I was little was restorative. It seems this last year has been about finding out who I really am. When I peel away all the superficial labels others have placed on me, and I on myself, what's left? I want to create a strong indelible self of self, that no one can take away from me. Knowing my family was such a big part of that.

My dad died, and obviously that's a huge change, being an orphan now. More importantly, though, I got married. That's my family now, too, and it's been really great. Making that kind of commitment to someone was wonderful and terrifying. I wish we could have had a 'real' wedding, but I'm glad we could have our small ceremony while my dad was still alive. That sense of stability and support has been invaluable in this rough period of my life. I figure if our relationship can survive that, we're pretty much set.

My husband and I are both in new jobs with more leadership responsibility than ever. This is both exciting and taxing for our family. The girls are stepping up and we are all supporting each other in new ways.

It is the grim reality of cancer that my dad is suffering with; as well as me. It will change me whether I like it or not. I wish the rest of my family was supportative because I am the good child who is there for him.

My two daughters and their families met in Jerusalem-after a 20 year separation. It was a warm meeting. My heart is full.

My mom finally and fully broke up with her on-again and off-again boyfriend of five years. They were living together and he was more like a dad to me than my own father. His three sons were my brothers. I loved all of them even though there were always problems and disagreements with him and my mom. He wasn't fully ready for commitment and even though he and my mom loved each other, that just wasn't enough to make their relationship work. He broke up with her in a text message and she moved out the next week.

My sister and I stopped talking. I one weekend, I decided that I wanted to move to Arizona. I told her a few weeks later. She wrote me this long message about how she was sad I didn't consult her when making this decision (I didn't consult anyone, I didn't need to, I knew that I was meant to). She was upset that we weren't close, despite her trying (which she didn't really, unless she means only talking to me when something was wrong with one of her cats). She also hoped that I would move to Indiana with her. I told her I didn't belong in Indiana, and that I felt AZ is where I'm meant to be. She was also upset I didn't tell her I started seeing Rob. Well, I didn't explain our relationship or me moving to be with him to anyone, because I knew no one would understand. She hasn't spoken to me since. Part of me wants to reach out to her, but part of me doesn't want to have a relationship with someone who clearly only cares about their needs.

Family... I have a difficult relationship with family. I don't think things with my mom are reparable. I love my brother, and his family, with all my heart, but there is so much distance between us, physically and emotionally. And the rest have more or less disowned me already, for one reason or another.

Patrick and I have successfully not married. We have grown closer and stronger together. What is unimportant falls away. We are traveling through tragedy as a couple, using each other as a testament to difficult thoughts and feelings. How does it sound when I say this when I think this while having these feelings? We listen and validate when we can, share sorrow when there are no words. This year has been about witnessing and supporting in the face of being helpless to make it better. I don't know what the future holds and I am less worried about the fact that I have no control over anything except how I choose to handle the moment I am faced with. I don't know what to call what we have. It is not the love that I had once with a man who lied and cheated. We come together unbroken and hopeful with each new day knowing that when one is not enough there are two.

There have been several family milestones this year: My 100-year old grandmother passed away. While it was sad and I feel very much for my mother, my grandmother was not a happy or pleasant person. She could be mean and spiteful and hurt everyone around her. I can't imagine living my whole life bitter and resentful. My brother in law got married. I can't say that she is a nice person because she doesn't really have enough social skills to understand what that means or how to be a nice, respectful, engaged person within a close knit family and doesn't seem interested in learning either. It is bothersome to me and has begun to impact how I interact with Cameron. I can also see her influence and it isn't always positive nor does it keep the family's best interest in mind. Finally, sharing Morgan's grandparents' 70th anniversary with the family in Seattle was amazing. Seeing everyone gather to celebrate and share was wonderful. Sadly, it seemed to be more for their children than for the couple themselves.

My dad had heart surgery and it was a scary time. With ups and downs before, during and after. He listened to the doctors, went to rehab, began to enjoy his 10 min cycles at the start and saw improvements in how he felt so kept going...not only losing weight but feeling better. Three and a half months after his surgery he signed up to walk in the neighbourhood 5k fundraising event. He thought he would make it half way and stop, but he kept going and crossed the finish line and gave high fives to those on the other side. This brought me pure joy to see him feeling better, getting strong, more fit, and more into a positive mindset to continue to heal and thrive. Nothing better!

My family is difficult. They are good people and I love them, but the four of us together are difficult. This year, both my mother and I went through debilitating depressions. I got through mine alone, and made the decision that I was going to get out of bed and live. My mother didn't get out of bed for three months, and it was because I coaxed her out when I was home for my birthday. My family is difficult. If there was a milestone, it's one that has been difficult to see up close. I suppose my father turning 70 is a milestone. The man barely looks fifty, and has the heart of a child. That is a milestone. Living through the difficulty of being married to a woman who lives with untreated depression. A woman who refuses to be treated, and who doesn't know how to communicate. He lives with this and is still able to be one of the sweetest, brightest souls anyone will ever come across. He is not perfect, but at least he tries. I am very much like my mother. But I try to be like my father. I guess that is my milestone

I've cut my dad out of my life. The ability to produce children does not mean you are a good parent. He can't abuse me anymore.

My brother married his boyfriend. At this time, we found out how messed up a lot of our relatives are, once and for all. Hateful mofos who could not support or celebrate that my brother, who is the sweetest and most upright man his whole life, never hurt anyone, and who's spent hours visiting our relatives, researching genealogy, befriending elders, fixing everyone's computers and making their airline reservations, well, all that means nothing. They cannot re-evaluate their hateful position of being anti-gay, even when they see this loving man find his bashert and be happy looking forward to building a family with him. They won't support it, saying point blank that they are against it because it's against their religion. At least the truth is out.

A terrible milestone is that we observed my brother-in-law's first yahzeit. He died a month before his 33rd birthday. Interestingly, things are better between and among many of us since he died-- and yet, it is very sad that he died so young. Getting through it and getting stronger in my marriage, despite early struggles in the midst and just after his death, has given me a lot of confidence in my capacity as a family member-- wife, daughter, daughter-in-law, future mother, etc. Very strange . . .

Besides our wedding and pregnancy, the biggest milestone in our family is the start of another generation. My brother Paul and his wife Rebecca were the first (on both sides on my family) to have a baby. Her name is Cara. She is beautiful. My parents are so excited to be Grandparents!!! And I love seeing all the pictures and video chatting with Paul while he takes care of her. He is so good with her and he is gonna be a great dad (as long as he doesn't work too much... Hopefully she will change that tendency to overwork he has)

One milestone, I guess, was spending the first full year without my mom being alive. Bob and I are now both technically orphans. The year without my mom has been freeing, in that I am no longer responsible for her care or worried about her safety and happiness. Yet I'm sad that I can't call her on the phone or stop by to see her or to ask her questions about our family that have just come to me.

I don't know if it counts as a milestone, but my little nieces and nephews are graduating, getting married. Makes me feel old, and somehow not of as much use. They don't need their uncle right now. They are marching on.

We got married! I think this has made us braver in our communication and tackling the issues that come up. We are in this together and both took our promises at the ceremony very seriously. We also made a clear decision together to not have babies, which is emotionally complicated, but what we both really want. I'm proud of what we have become together and looking forward to what we will create.

Our daughter completed graduate work, earning her MLIS. She began a part time job, further increasing the demands on her time. I am filled with pride and admiration for her, as she attempts to balance home and work, being a wife and mother, caring for our grandson who is on the spectrum, becoming a professional doing something she not only enjoys but also excels in. I get concerned that there is too little time, if any, for herself. I worry that she, like myself at her stage of life, is spread too thin.

El año pasado me separé y a pesar de haber disuelto así la familia que formé encontre una persona maravillosa con quien pasar el resto de esta vida y volver a formar una familia. Maria de la Piedad Menendez. GRACIAS UNIVERSO!

There really hasn't been a single milestone. However, every day with my son has its share of accomplishments. He's speaking much better, he's playful and imaginative. I love watching him play and make toys "talk" to one another; his creativity is awe-inspiring. He does something daily that amazes me and fills my heart. I fall deeper and deeper in love with this little boy and I have so much hope for him and his life, I can barely contain my emotions.

My in-laws had their 50th anniversary this summer and it was incredibly sad to see how two of their children have dictated the entire family's interactions. Because two of them decided to no longer speak to the other two—without giving us any concrete reasons, opportunities for atonement, or even a space within to discuss—the family is completely split. After trying to talk to one of my husband's brothers this summer and get to the bottom of it, I was left feeling completely flabbergasted. It saddens me that my in-laws are too cowed by their children to lay down the law with them and insist that they resolve their quarrels with their children.

WEDDING OF YOUNGER DAUGHTER I spent a year planning. I poured my heart into it. I cooked food for the Friday night dinner. I was gracious. I went over budget but only by about 10%. And I enjoyed every minute of the planning. I was so happy that my daughter and her bashert chose a traditional Jewish wedding. I gained a son!

I had a serious discussion with my father about his emotional unavailability. He has tried to express his love more in return for me being more present.

Major milestone with my family? I guess it would be that we took two amazing vacations as a family this past year. Grand Cayman and Washington, DC. I get the sense the kids loved it and look forward to more vacations together. It's important for them to feel this way as they enter their teen years. Keeping the family connected.

Bryan graduated from high school - hooray, and dad died 2 days later. I have not been able to fully recover from dad's death, and bringing Bryan to Portland feels like one more loss. Of course, it isn't. He's happy and healthy and is in a great place, but i miss him. I miss dad. Every fucking day. I could cry every day if I let me. He was so ready. It was so time. I thought I was ready, but I wasn't. I wish I had been there for his last breath. I'm so sad.

My grandparents moved from an hour away to ten minutes away from my house. I guess that is a major milestone. Its really nice that they are around more often. My mom has really been effected by it but she keeps worrying about them dying. Im happy they are around for Sam because he didn't get to spend as much time with them as I did growing up. I am happy they are here and happy and healthy. But I wish my grandpa wasn't always on my case; I know its just out of love and he is old.

Jayne turned six this year and had surgery for the first time. There were obvious financial implications. It was also a reminder of her importance to us and of how fleeting the lives of our dearest pets are. (Argh. This question is making me sad.) I hope she's still here and thriving in a year.

We all got a huge inheritance. Mom seems less needy. Jon seems more confident. I own a home. It's all because of Mamma and Pappa. Jon and I are on a different playing field as siblings and in our lives, I feel like I have control of my relationship with Mom for the first time. Mamma and Pappa have never stopped helping us.

It wasn't a single day, it was growing love and consistent visits each week with my 1-1/2 and 4-3/4 year old granddaughters. It has helped my relationship with Jason and Sara. Jase is definitely appreciative that I go each week and Sara, I believe, appreciates it as well even though she's not as vocal about it as Jason. I adore all four of them. Maybe the milestone is that we are all getting along really well.

My family is pretty much the same as it's always been. My parents are in great shape, thank goodness, and are busy with active work and social lives. My fear is, however, that this will not always be the case. This is what is factoring into my confusion about where I want to be in the future. As long as everything stays the same, I have the luxury of going where I want to go. The question now is whether or not I want to prepare for that day when I will not have a choice.

Yes, opened new opportunities.

Dad died. Major milestone. I suppose it showed me how Strength is very much a matter of common sense: if quitting is not an option, nor is turning back, than it makes perfect sense to soldier on. And when the clouds break, and you've faced your fears, there's the rest of your life ahead of you. Full of Love and opportunities and fun.

My son went into the Air Force. I am very proud of him but he is all I have. I miss him terribly. I am adjusting to a new normal.

My mum, my sister and I all making a greater effort to be more health, slimmer, and take better care of ourselves so that we're around for a long time. Now i just need my partner to do the same.

The major milestone would be my little brother getting married and possibly my nephew starting law school. Both have made me feel happy and proud.

Not so much a milestone, but we had our family reunion and all cousins except a few came in town. We are all we have left -- no aunts or uncles on my Mom's side and I am the youngest. It was wonderful and so sad, only because I see us all getting older and I fear I'll be left alone one day. But it was so very fun and filled with so much love!

Everybody got a year older. The twins went into first grade. Juno started preschool.

My relationship with my kids have gotten even better! They gently guided me and helped me understand and acknowledge their adulthood. I am so proud of the people they have grown into. We are excited that Aaron and Anna are talking more about moving back to MN. And Shaked is coming to MN!

My nephews Alexander and Sam are both engaged to be married. I am so happy for them, for they seem so happy, and I am proud of them both. How is it that I am lucky enough to have such wonderful nephews?

The biggest milestone was reconnecting with my dad. I don't know if it was totally this year but it has been huge. After being estranged for 7 years (approx) we reconnected and it has been amazing. I think we have really come to an amazing but unspoken agreement to talk and relate to each other. He has been so great trying to be the father I have always wanted. We are in contact and continuing to grow and get to know each other. I think the turning point was when I came home from springbreak and discovered that I was no longer angry or holding a grudge that I have been carrying around for 40+ years. This gave my dad the freedom he needed to have permission for us to have a relationship outside and inside of the "family." He has helped with retirement, the lawsuit, going to doctors for my hip surgery and really just being present in my life. I am beyond grateful to have this opportunity to actually have a relationship with my dad!

Not sure there is any major milestone this year. I think that Larry and I are stronger than ever. Getting married really changed things. I know now that I am important to him and that he loves me. I think he knows how much I love him too. It is a real comfort to know we will be together until the end.

My husband was dignosed with chrones and it made us join closer to protect him. I think it made me realize that he is not invincible.

I went back to work full time, as a mom. After starting back part time last fall, I returned to full time status in May. I decided to start full time to work on a really cool project that required full time involvement. It's been... okay? The project is fantastic and I really enjoy the work I'm doing out here, so that part isn't in question. But getting home at 4pm, quickly eating a snack and prepping things for bedtime, getting her from daycare, tending to her at bedtime, finally having dinner at 8pm, and then getting up at 6am and doing it all over again.. gets old. I wish there were more hours in the day! It's also very difficult to leave her at daycare when she's crying and misses Mama. I still don't know how to balance being a full time mom and a full time engineer. Hopefully over the next year I'll get better at it.

My sister is having a baby! I feel mostly worried for the child. She's a harsh, tough person and very selfish in some significant ways. I hope that motherhood softens her. For myself, I'm excited to be an uncle but also wary of how that role might make me sad.

My daughter got married. I'm happy for her, she's with someone she loves deeply. For me, it's both a sad time and a happy time. I'm saddened to see her moving on and, in a sense, further from me, her father. At the same time, I'm delighted she's moving on, independent and strong. I wish her all the best.

My dad turned 70. Suddenly my mom makes comments that he might drop dead and he shrugs it off. I was surprised that he was grumpy and upset on and around his birthday. It doesn't surprise me in reflection. That would and will (hopefully) be scary. He's still a boy at heart, a teen, a young man, a new father, a new father in a second marriage, these transitions come and go with time. This next year I want to step up my game and have more honest, open conversations with him. I fear leaving things on the table and not knowing about him, not learning from his experience, not knowing about taxes, marriage, buying socks.

Over the 4th of July weekend, my husband and I visited our folks (my mother and his parents live in the same town). His mother's Alzheimer's has been getting steadily worse, and this was the first time we saw her that she didn't know who we, or her other son, were most of the time. Also, when we had sandwiches for lunch, she couldn't remember how to make one. It was sad, but she seems to be reasonably happy just living in the moment.

Mira went to first grade and the twins turned three. All of them are growing up and fast! I think as they get older they actually need more --more individualized attention, more guidance, (more attention to homework!) It is super exciting and rewarding, and also very challenging to try to give them all they need.

My husband quit his job and started his own company, and he moved more toward filmmaking as opposed to acting. I think his change in career has lightened all of our emotional loads. It would foolish to say that changes in my career didn't lighten that load as well. The more we are both able to feel creative and are able to put that creativity out into the world, the better we do together. I'm so moved to see him feel more in control and better about himself.

My third son was born! It's been a challenge to have two young children going through the same phases so close together...my wife and I feel like we just got our second baby to start walking and talking, and already our 8 month old is crawling and babbling, well on his way to joining the other two. It's one of a few things that have happened this year that have been teaching me to stop wasting time and do what's important when you have a chance. I want to wrestle with and read to my sons, to have fun with them, to have long conversations with my wife for no reason...work will always have to be done. But that family stuff goes away if I don't enjoy it now.

Our move to our new community, new school, new medical program, new home and new job. I feel light as a feather and reinvigorated, ready to embrace the New Year.

Same as question 1 -- my son's bar mitzvah. It has really given me a sense of what my son is capable of.

In March 2016, my grandfather passed away. This affected me in a way that I cant really describe. I got know my grandfather very well in the last few months of his life. The one thing that it prompted me to do was that it motivated me to travel to his homeland, Poland, and also travel to a place he had never been to, Israel.

My son finished middle school (8th grade) and my daughter finished elementary school (5th grade). Since both of their schools continue into the next grades, this did not feel like much of a milestone, even though there was a ceremony for the end of the lower school for my daughter last spring. Since my kids did not have to change schools, this transition seems to be barely noticed by them; it's just like any other year of going back to school, with a new teacher or set of teachers and new expectations. But for me, it has seemed like a bit of a big deal. All of a sudden I'm keenly aware of just how much longer we have with kids living in our house. There are a lot of childhood experiences I have wanted to give them that I haven't been able to. Our house feels too small and no longer the house I wanted to raise kids in, and I'm very aware of the vacations I haven't yet been able to take with them.

My grandsons becoming 3 and 6. Little but no longer babies - boys. I love having them in my life.

We moved to a new house at the end of March. The year began with decluttering, putting lots of stuff in storage, and living for many months with our real estate agent's staging furniture. It was hard and kind of unpleasant. Younger daughter S, age 11, adamantly did not want to move, and has really struggled with leaving the house where she was born. I felt terrible because I was the one who wanted to move, and I love our new house so much, and it has a driveway, and it's really big, and it's close to my work. It is so much better, our living situation. S is adjusting, is in therapy now, and I think is doing better, but I really struggled with how to parent her through it with empathy. (Older daughter, H, was fine with the move.) I wanted to support her, recognizing that she was grieving, but I wasn't sure whether I was pushing her to continue holding on to her anger and grief (I don't think I was).

I decided to convert from Reformed Protestant to Eastern Orthodox. It's one of the best decisions I've ever made for myself. My parents and sister think I'm making a huge mistake and have sort of pulled away because they don't agree with the theology of Orthodoxy. We've all said some things that were incredibly hurtful and are still trying to work through that hurt. We do all love each other.

Noah, my baby brother, was born. It is weird that in the same year that I went off to college that I had another sibling be born. Noah has Cystic Fibrosis. That diagnosis is really hard for everyone involved, but it taught me an important lesson. It doesn't matter if people are talented or healthy. What matters is that people are loved.

Sarah was engaged! Her wedding is in a few weeks and I am so excited. Also for the most part each of us are doing really well! And mom and dad went on a really cute vacation together at the end of the summer. They go on more outings together and I think they are happy that the three of us are in good places. There is a lot of love!

Dad died. Stirred up all kinds of stuff - sadness that we weren't closer, awareness that my life is limited, resolve to live in ways he didn't - more soulfully, less selfishly. Didn't feel we had much unfinished business that could have been resolved, but still... the gut cries were surprising and intense. Also the loveliness of the Shiva and the closeness of my family.

The kids being away and at school is great but I really miss them. Family is different. I need to see them. Maybe more this year.

Our beloved cat got an aggressive form of cancer a few months ago, and we had to deal with saying goodbye to a wonderful companion. This affected my daughter the most, since she and our cat had a close bond. We had our vet come to the house to euthanize her, which was much better than having to drag her to the vet's office. It was a sad few weeks. Her sister is still with us and will hopefully stay healthy for many years to come.

I went to India with my brother, which was intended to be and to some extent, maybe was, a milestone. The goal was to get closer to him and enjoy a memorable shared experience together. Though we haven't talked much since, it will be something we share, which makes it a bit of a milestone, I think.

I decided not to go home for the holidays this past year, and it was one of the best decisions I made for ME. I distanced myself from my family a bit in understanding that now I can make the decisions that work for me, rather than trying to please my family. This has been freeing in some ways but has also caused tension in other areas.

Since turning 90, Dad has definitely slowed down. He says he's through taking long trips. This is helping us stay on budget since travelling is so expensive. But it also makes me a little sad. He also seems a bit depressed now that he is no longer planning his next European adventure. I hope that I have not contributed to this.

My father got married in December 2015, and didn't feel he could invite his children. This was largely due to a rift with my brother, and my brother's unwillingness to accept his wife. This was all very difficult for our family, and I spent a lot of time and energy trying to bring people together. I did manage to do the following: 1) arranged a "siblings summit" in Palm Springs in April 2016, at which the 3 of us agreed that our family was important, the 3 of us would be the leaders going forward, and try to establish an annual or bi-annual family get-together, 2) really pushed to make the family gathering happen for Thanksgiving 2016. I'm excited about it, but also a little worried that conflicts will arise.

My dad got married! Dad falling in love again after Mama's death was a growing experience for everyone. I feel like a kinder person, not just because I'm no longer resenting his happiness, but because I'm actively happy about it. Margie is a good lady who reminds me of my mom in a lot of ways, and knowing my dad has someone to watch out for him and for him to watch out for is a relief, especially with me in Dallas and Megan in San Francisco.

My dad switched jobs, and is much happier, which helps my mom and sisters at home. Because of this, I am able to better talks with my parents and be more open with them.

My two daughters entered high school this fall. There was a moment when I realized: they will only live with us at home for four more years. I think we all realized it at the same time.

My wife turned 40. She is freaking out. I turned 38, but I've been freaking out for a lot longer. Getting old doesn't bother me--I'm ok with gray hair, and I much prefer my 30s to my 20s. It's how fast time seems to be going that drives me crazy. Yesterday it feels like I was 16; how did I get here so fast? Am I wasting time?

Family? That's hard to identify. I always think of my nuclear family and I don't have any contact with them.

A major family milestone was that Elyse graduated college. While I am so proud of her and so excited for her, I also did not do a good job - and am still working on - differntiating myself from her. I don't like her friends, or her boyfriend, and I want to help her avoid this situation! But that's not up to me. So this has been hard for me as I try to support her throughout.

My daughter going to University of Kansas -- first getting accepted, then preparing for the journey and graduating from high school and finally, moving in. We had an amazing road trip together and I loved spending time with her.

They arrived with their soft tones and sorry faces the needles and the question of readiness. And I had to say I was even though I wasn't am not won't be ever I had to say she was even though I don't know shouldn't have to won't ever be sure even though hours earlier she licked tears off my cheek with her sandpaper tongue. They carried her away in a blanket Brought her back to me as dust. Little body that moved with me in the night that I knew how to hold without hurting that I tried not to hold on to too long. But what is family if not the bodies we grow with and so forget are not our own?

The death of my aunt beth... i didn't have the opportunity to say goodbye or be there to help my family, especially my mom, get through the tragedy. closure is not the right word, but there's still something unreal about all of it. feeling far away in times of crisis is the monkey on my back because i choose to live in another state, & hearing my uncle say, at 0430, to miss my flight bc he knew she wouldn't want me to remember her that way was devastating. i turned around & drove back home sobbing & learned a short time later that i wouldn't have made it anyway. i miss her & her voice & the way the simple but beautiful things made her happy. i hate that she suffered but am grateful it was brief. and, i can't stand how sad my mom is.

M getting a tumor and needing treatment.. I am grateful she is better now.. life is short so live while you can.

Well, I already said this but a bunch of people died. It sucked. It affected me because we've all been constantly forced with our mortalities. I've had to accept that my parents are not immortal and that my time with them is extremely limited. Same can be said of my grandma, of Ryan, of my cousins. WHAT DO YOU DO WITH WHAT LITTLE TIME YOU HAVE ON THIS EARTH? I ask myself that all the time. And now little things that would've felt insignificant or I wouldn't have given a second thought are suddenly cause for hesitation. It's exhausting. I just want to be all I can be, make the most of my time alive, make the most of all the sacrifices hundreds of ancestors have made for me for years, particularly my parents. But no pressure!

This year my parents bought their first house that is too small to accommodate children (i.e. my sister and me) for long periods of time. They already moved away from our childhood hometown, but now they are downsizing into essentially a retirement home. For most of my life I've focused on my own aging, but now it is most salient that my parents are aging since I've passed young adulthood and they are nearing retirement. I've always recognized that my parents will one day be old and one day die, it's just scary to think that I'm nearing the age where I'm on my own.

Having a child provides more milestones for a family then stars you can count in the sky. If you amalgamate the whole experience it could be truncated into witnessing the mind come alive. I suspect most people see it in each child they have growing up but when you take time to really watch the process it is no less beautiful then watching a flower bloom for the first time. It starts off slowly as the synapse fire impulsively in the brain and with it the formation of words, thought, and wonder. The whole world is open up and with out limit. There is no sense of risk, danger, safety, or security. Everything and nothing is possible and every moment is lived outside the constraints of time and inside the moment of the present. Seeing a child simply exist in the "now" is the milestone I hope to achieve and may just be the most important thing I may attempt to aspire to in my life going forward. Thank you, son for awakening my mind.

My estranged husband died from alcohol abuse. It has affected me in several ways.....I am relieved to be free of the abuse that I lived with for fifteen years; however, it has also affected me in a negative way. I was left with his debts and lots of anger.

A major milestone for the family...I guess that would be surviving a year with our new financial reality. I would also say that it was Dan's first time teaching Religious School and that he started is Master's Degree to become a teacher. In addition, I learned how to start a nonprofit business, build a website, and found out a lot more about myself. However, those aren't really milestones for the "family". This is one of the things that does bother me. As individuals I think we all do pretty well. However, I sometimes don't feel we are working as a unit. Not having a "regular" family growing-up I am not sure I understand what that is all suppose to be like. However, it does feel amiss especially when questions like this arise.

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My sister got divorce. There was no drama, no pain, no-one got hurt. And for the first time in a long time my sister and I started a new path in hour relationship. We became friends

Well the most major milestone is the birth of our baby girl. I was just able to reflect on this experience when my nephew was born. I think and hope that motherhood has softened me up a bit. I've had a bit of baggage I've carried from my own childhood and while I had to be tough to make it through all the awfulness, it doesn't always serve me today. I am thankful that I have this little being that fills my heart when I am with her and so then I can also take that love out into the world.

This year, my brother's and sister-in-law-'s eldest son and his wife, with their five children "made Aliyah" (began living in Israel). They are now visiting the USA only occasionally and living here during the summer months at the summer camp they now run (where they met). I have become a lot more aware of the conditions in Israel and Palestine due to knowing they are living there, now. We need peace in the Middle East.

Since all my blood family has passed on, I have no milestone I can identify.

I think I covered all of those in question 1. I did not mention, however, that my brother will not have anything to do with me because Rick is living here and he cannot stand Rick. Also my brother's marriage of a year and a half, to Kim, has ended. He is telling everyone she was overly jealous but I know how Mike and emotionally treat people and that is what she says he has done to her. I think he has made a huge mistake in letting her go. He is 59 and by himself again. I don't like being distant from him, but I think it is time he learns how to let things go and let people live their own lives and not withhold his love just because he disagrees with them. Everything that has happened to me in the past year has caused me much emotional pain, some physical pain, anxiety, depression, and left me wondering what the next year will bring, while hoping and praying God will allow this to be a good year. And I have found hope in God and I am thankful for a renewed relationship with Him.

I quit my job earlier this year and took some time off. I'm back to work and I love my new job, but part of me really wants to go back to living at a slower pace. This thing in the back of my head keeps on talking to me about getting away from it all. I think I'll be leaving the rat race sooner than later.

Our 10 year anniversary was on October 9, 2015. Today is October 8, 2016. I am saddened to know that we are in about the same space as we were about one year ago. We are painfully unable to communicate. Tom is now home so I hope to be in a much different place in one year. I hope it is with him. But if it is not, I hope to be happier and healthier in one year than I am today.

My mom turned 70...she doesn't act/look it!

not sure there is one major milestone for my family, there is ongoing growth and development that makes me so happy and proud. I ended a relationship with was not productive nor fulfilling - nor respectful to myself and my sons in it;s lack of emotional engagement. I have entered into another that seems to be very positive. As far as me personally, the death of my mother has been significant in challenging and positive ways. I am so grateful that I got to a place of acceptance and love with her and could express and show it while she was still able to take it in.

My mother is truly beginning to decline. I am having to step up to solve issues that I have never had to face before. It has made me realize how un prepared we are for retirement.

This year, recently in fact, my uncle turned 80. It was fun to see him and to have dinner with him. That said, it is scary that he is 80. I want my parents and uncle to live forever. I am way more scared about the three of them dying than I am about me dying.

Mom is dying. We knew she would someday, we just didn't know when or how. Now we know in a general way and watching it happen. Everyone is a bit sad and normal at the same time. We don't want her to go but watching her deteriorate is hard. It's not like she's here. She can't be the person we've know for so long but we're not supposed to want her to leave. Watching someone die slowly is like holding your breath. We want relief but we don't want the results.

My son did not pass classes in college so he move back in with me. He is suffering from depression and is having difficulty finding a job. But we live in an expensive city where people cannot find minimum wage workers so his prospects are good.

Chayton started at sigma nu fraternity and just started classes at UW, Seattle. Already I have had a few messages returned with friendly, more relaxed. I believe I might even get a phone call or a letter in this coming year. Or not. But his tone is better towards me.h It affects me deeply that Kelly has started with my green tincture and butter, and found success. I would like to see this continue. I need to make my own plants to afford the tincture we need.

I have helped my parents through financial hardship. I have tried, for years, to help them get ahead. But it wasn't happening. I helped them through a bankruptcy. I encouraged them to walk away from their house. I helped them with a budget. They aren't spenders. But they believed in paying for education for all of their children and at the end of the day, we were the reason they were in this place, this paycheck to paycheck, cut meds in half to save money, kind of place. After my grandfather's death, they moved into a house that was paid for. My mom started collecting social security while still working. And for the first time, in my life, my dad said they were thinking about a vacation (not a weekend trip for a Bar Mitzvah/Wedding), a real vacation. I have never known them to take a vacation. They haven't since their honeymoon. I was so happy. Not that they have a little bit of savings, but happy that they can now enjoy life without worry, everyday.

One thing after another with my ageing mother. And recently, the news that my 20 year old niece is pregnant. Which for some reason, makes me very cross. Because "It wasn't planned!" just doesn't cut it in 2016. Because, really? You're barely an adult - all the dead possibility fairies! And because it reminds me that I missed out on that part of life, and that it's now far too late to regret it.

My middle child graduated from high school. I wanted this to be a special time, but he was so disinterested in the whole process and continues to be very unsure of where to go next, that it was disappointing to all of us. It resulted in a nice dinner out as the highlight, family time with all 5 of us present, which is always very special. But in the end the result is a troubled teen at home with not enough to do = more trouble.

I turned 50. Both children adjusted well to their new middle/high school well. My children went to 2 different Jewish summer camp for 2 weeks each and had a great time. For the first time since they were born, I had 10 days without them and it was fine. I was the parent producer of the middle school musical and it turned out to be an amazing experience and production. My husbands back healed. Much to be thankful for.

My mother turning 50 has been hard for her. I have seen her change mentally. I sometimes wish she kept her mind young. She's so beautiful.

my daughter and her husband purchased their first home. i am so happy for them, starting a new life in a new state. it has been odd for me, a single-parent for the 18 years she lived with me, to not have her close by.

This year, my grandma moved into a new apartment building that's somewhere between an apartment complex and an assisted living facility. The woman she has with her a few days a week is by choice, rather than part of the complex package and thus the unit still somewhat resembles her previous home. And yet, it's an adjustment, especially when, unlike her past short stints at PE rehab centers, this change in scenery isn't temporary (at least not in the sense that she'll be returning to something). This has primarily been an adjustment for her. It also feels like one for me, as moves such as this feel like the most tangible evidence of the progression of time. I often wonder where the time goes. Changes such as these are an answer.

Maybe a major milestone is that Melissa's father entered hospice. Also, Aunty Jane is cancer free and Uncle Richard survived his heart attack. My sister and I got closer I think. I feel sad about Mr. Borusso but am glad that he is being looked after by his family at home. Also, Uncle Peter has terminal cancer. I thought he had overcome it but my sister told me that he is indeed dying and no one is telling him. That doesn't seem right to me. They're trying to protect him but if I was dying I would want to know. Maybe he doesn't want to know. My sister's eldest turned 11, so, firmly in the double digits now. One of my cousin's children travelled to meet my brother and his family. My family seems so far away and I feel guilty for having travelled to Switzerland and Panama instead of going to England to see my dying Uncle.

Coming out to my parents, does that count? We have a much more open relationship. It hurt at first, but it's getting so much better. And then Addy turned 2, that's another one. It's weird to hold conversations with her and hear what's been going on in her head all this time.

In my mind, milestones have this connotation of being something positive. Honestly, nothing really positive has happened for all of us these past few years. I think a significant event that happened was the passing of my grandmother, which happened a little over a month ago. Honestly, I haven't even taken the time to think about it for the sake of what feels like my sanity. When I do think about it, I sort of go into this panic because I know that I will never see her again, and the thought alone is baffling and terrifying to me. So to cope, I distract myself with work and suppress my emotions, which I realize is destructive to my emotional wellbeing. If anything, I guess I've started to see life through a different lens. I often think about how she would want me to do something or solve something. I know how much she lived her life through me, how much she saw my potential. Right now, I live a fuller life for her.

My mom became ill with cancer and COPD . It is a crushing feeling to know that she may not be long for this world. She has overcome so many other health issues , but this time they may get the best of her. It pervades EVERY part of my day - work, home, reading, friends, family

I mentioned this on Day 1, but this past August, my stepmother sold my childhood home, and the place where she and her family considered home base since 2007. This is really huge for both her and me. I think we both have let go of a lot of internal attachments to our grief by letting go of the physical epicenter of it. In her case, she had to live there every day, had to sleep in the bed where my father died every night, had to see his face and his body every corner she turned. It may not have been as severe as I'm imagining it; because she lived there and I only ever visited twice a year, the flashbacks probably weren't as strong as they were for me. She's starting a new life in New Hampshire and starting to separate herself from Fredericksburg a lot more, which is a major life change for her. As for me, my physical, everyday life isn't much different. I'm still living in the same place, still pretty much doing the same shit, still have the same spurts of memory and periods of forgetting. But I feel that a certain coming of age occurred in me from this event. I watched both of my parents become ill and die in that house-- going back there twice a year kept me emotionally tied to the horror of such devastating early memories. Even being out in LA and just knowing that the house was there, always open to my return, felt like an anchor to my inner heaviness. I know that there is some additional grief associated with the recent loss of this house, and I'm sure that returning to Fredericksburg will be a uniquely painful experience this year. I'm also aware that I will never be fully free from the pain of my childhood and very early adulthood. But in saying goodbye to again, the literal epicenter of my grief, I feel as though I have been emancipated from a certain heaviness, as though I've emerged from a certain darkness within.

Going on four years since my son cut me off. Still devastating. I still cry every day over the loss of him in my life. I battle deepening depression as I lose hope.

My answer in #1 re my brothers--that has significantly reduced the amount of fear/anger/resentment I carry around with me. And a growing harmony with my husband after a time of conflict and resentment with him. The work I'm doing during these days of awe is making me turn the kalleidoscope of perspective to see that my level of tension, and pained tolerance in the face of his shortcomings--certainly must have had an effect on him--making him feel insecure in my presence and more likely to get uptight and engage in exactly the behaviors I end up objecting to. In general I feel more relaxed and less driven whenever I reach a pool of contented peace between rounds of grappling with the needs of family members and friends who are struggling with sickness. I'm definitely a work in progress.

Doug got married. It was really wonderful. Friends of his from all over the country came - friends through his work. Michael said that he thought it made Doug feel really loved. The pain of his daughters' disowning him is still very present, but he spoke about it publicly for the first time at the wedding - in saying that 2 or their 6 children were not there. The whole weekend was really lovely, not just celebrating Doug and Michael's love, but two other newer couple's love as well - one straight and one gay. It made me feel that I was ready for love again too. I was the best man - which I had always wanted to be and had wanted to be for his first marriage. I talked about in my toast how Doug and I had spent our high school years driving around Tallahassee talking and trying to figure out where we fit in the world. And that now, I think that what Doug was trying to do with all of that driving was to find his way to Michael. During the wedding, all of the people they had hired to support the wedding, the catering staff and the bar tenders, were so happy that the wedding was happening even without knowing Doug and Michael.

Nathan came to live with us. Oof. The effectchas been both good and bad. Very people-y here. I get to shine as a strict but loving mom and his grades are coming up and he is becoming more "Normalised".


Jeff entered the dating world!! He reached out to me to help him set up a dating profile (e.g., show him how to talk to ladies, help him select his pictures, how to bring up meeting up with someone...). It's been so freaking cute (and hilarious) to watch. I'm just so proud of our relationship and how close he and I are becoming, which is having a ripple effect on other members of our immediate family too. Recently, for example, I spoke about this with my mom and then she and I got on the topic of what we both do/do not like about online dating. :) He's also motivated me to keep trying to date and put myself out there. Seeing this turtle come out of his shell and push himself outside of his comfort zone really has encouraged me to persist with my own doubts and struggles. Even though he and I face different issues because of who we are, I know that our demons are similar. I also cannnnoootttt wait to see what happens with him and this girl!!!

Another one of my relatives died this past year. My uncle Nat was one of my father's twelve siblings. With his passing there are now only three of them left. I didn't go to his funeral. I couldn't. Every death since my mother's feels like the reopening of a wound. My sister says you can miss a wedding but not a funeral. I choose to disagree.

This year our youngest child and son went to kindergarten. While we were looking forward to saving money on childcare, his entry into kindergarten signaled the end of an era. My sweet babies once fit in my lap, running with unbridled enthusiasm as I entered the door home from work. It is hard to believe that anyone before or after will be that pleased to see me. I will miss the lazy days together, and miss this period of physical mother-son intimacy. His little body fit so easily in mine, and I have been the center of his world. This transition makes me sad for it is hard not to believe there were moments I missed out on as s result of fatigue and distraction. Moments that I can never reclaim. I also remember the infant, toddler and preschool days of wonder, joy and laughter, a gift I will carry with me always. Life goes too fast! I am also delighted for him as he learns about the world, discovers reading, writing, math, science, engineering, sports, hobbies and interests new-found. He will make friendships. He will find others to help him move forward in his education, communication and the ways of friendship and love. I know we have still have years together. I look forward to seeing the amazing, sensitive, affectionate, intelligent and curious man he will become. Just not too fast, and may I remember to take all the moments to be present amd take in these minutes, hours and days that I have with my lovely five-year old soon. I hope I remember to play.

We lost my Nana Mavis, and I think it helped my dad a lot. I have been like a ship without a rudder a bit unclear and unfocused. Disillusioned and depressed I guess at times. This happens but I don't want it to happen anymore. It's time to stop thinking about making stuff happen and to actually start making stuff really happen

All of my children are out of the house at this moment. One on their own and two in college. I feel restless, like my purpose/focus has changed and I am not sure what to do with myself. Most days I'm excited about the future, but I am also absolutely terrified. My chosen career has become stale and at my age, I don't know what to do next or where to go.

My sister had her baby! Azmi is so the love of all of our lives and it has been so wonderful being with him. I hate they live so far away but I am so grateful for the times that I have seen him! I didn't realize how much I could love him. My Pop also recently passed away and although it was sad, his quality of life was so poor at the end. It also allowed my family to have some really wonderful reminiscing time about how wonderful of a grandfather he was.

My brother-in-law proposed to his fiancée, and they'll be married next year. They've started making arrangements. Despite their decision to have a big wedding party, his sister (my wife) was not invited to be part of it, nor was I although he stood in our wedding party. I do not care about the wedding party, but I do care if this is a reflection of how we rank among their closest friends. I see them growing apart from his family, and the rest of my in-laws seem to deny that's the case. In the grand scheme of things, this does not seem like a big deal. I'm interested to know if it becomes bigger or smaller in the years to come.

My nephew moving out on his own. Lots of turmoil related to that. It's been a rough year on everyone involved and seems to have set the chasm between my parents and brother and possibly me in stone. It makes me incredibly sad. I don't understand my brother's point of view on this but I don't approach the topic in fear that it will set him permanently adrift from me too.

We paid off our mortgage. It feels wonderful to be debt free! I'm hoping it helps my husband feel more at ease and able to enjoy life a little more.

My father got drunk while my mother and I were away on a trip and smashed our car and broke into our house completely destroying the door. My father has always had a drinking problem, but a really sad thing is that he's got old now and seeing him like that was really pathetic. The worst is the revelation that you can't rely on your own father anymore. This really made me rethink my life and the way I'm supposed to live it in the future.

We thought my mother had only a few months to live. In those moments you realize just how unimportant everything else is compared to health. It's funny/sad how quickly we forget that as soon as the crisis passes. It's easy to treat each thing that bothers us as if it was this important. But we do it to our detriment.

omg, my middle sister and dad have had a troubled relationship for many years. It has affected family get togethers and caused so much anguish as we try to pretend that everything is okay. but a small miracle happened. My sister actually wanted to see my dad if I would go with her. I was super tired, had only gotten about 4 hours of sleep the night before and I knew that if I went, I would not get enough sleep that night. But I went and things went well. I'm hoping that things will continue to improve. The holidays and all our birthdays are coming between November 4th and December 11th. Lets hope for the best.

Well my two great aunts have continued to survive, both near 100 and my parents have survived caring for them in their home. My brother and sister in law have continued to raise two strong little boys with lots of love. This has affected me in that I am aware that resilience is a strong quality in our family and that in this next generation especially a lot of unconditional love and support.

In January I started taking a picture every day (not always succeeding) and this practice helps like the second hand on a clock helps to mark out time. We've had no major family milestones--deaths, graduations, marriages-- but as we grow as individuals we stay within arms reach of each other. This isn't always as easy as it sounds. Try roller skating down or up a hill side by side. Even small and quiet victories can actually be major. This year something shifted in me and I no longer feel like I have to convince my son to agree to my point of view. I am able to let him be who he is instead of always trying to change him. Supporting him to get at the thing he's reaching for however I can. Instead of always correcting him, saying, you should be reaching for THIS. Maybe he's reaching for his own THIS, to me it looks like THAT but it's his THIS. I had to give up treating him like he was five years old, frowning every time he was disappointing me. We get twisted under the weight of our parents' disappointment. We cripple each other with our stupid expectations of what a man is, what a woman is, a son, a daughter. Watching my children grow into themselves, I've had to drop the ballast overboard of who I projected them to be. As a result, the burden of responsibility I felt to do the best job at raising them is lightened. It both is and is not about me. I feel freer with them, delighting more in our differences of opinion. I learn from them and grow from the light they shine on me.

I heard that dad recused himself from jury duty. It was a child abuse case. He said he would be biased, that he had been abused and had been an abuser. I know he didn't say that casually. I know he said it in public, owned it. Finding out gave me a very peculiar mixed emotion. I'm proud, in a way, despite everything- to me this represents justice. Proud of him and proud of me.

I can't think of a major milestone this past year. A couple more babies added to the next generation but I don't really see anything that has had a major effect on me or the family as a whole.

I turned 55 this year. I look and feel like I am at least 10 years younger. I feel alive and vibrant. I have passion in my life for the work I am doing and the people I am meeting. I am happy.

Rapid decline in mom's health. Exhausted. But happy I took the initiative to fix my part of this broken relationship.

Andrew became a Bar Mitzvah. 10 .5 years ago we did not know if he would speak. He hit it out of the park. It may not have been the type of bar mitzvah I had wanted at one time for my son...but he is on his own journey. And I have learned to love and embrace it. He had some big set backs it the prior 2 years....and he came through with flying colors. I am so proud of him. I've learned to accept each of my children for who they are. Their strengths. Their challenges and enjoy the journey with them.

One major milestone would be all of the kids leaving Brisbane. Sam now lives in Canada, Craig is still in Jakarta, and I'm in Sydney. I feel very guilty about leaving home still. Not as much as I did at the start, but I feel guilty about leaving mum. I worry about her because I know she worries about me, and I worry that because she put so much focus on her children, who are now no longer close by, she might feel a bit lost?

My Uncle Floyd's artwork is going to be permanently displayed in the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture Museum. A few of my family and me went to the grand opening on September 24,2016 in Washington, D.C. His artwork "After the Storm CNN" is on display and "Janie' Apron" which is based on our family was bought by the museum. This made the three trip I made this past year and I love the thrill of traveling and exploring new places.

My oldest son opened a business in which he is not only following his passion, but also giving back to his community. I could not be more proud of, not only him but, all of my children. I am so glad that for the most part, they have not suffered the same challenges I did as a child and young adult.

My nephew graduated from college this year and has had to make some major decisions about what he wants to do with his life and these changes have been a source of stress on him and my sister. I got to see them a lot and that has been great. I have had the opportunity to be there for them and help and offer support. It has brought me closer to all of them and shown me that in the absence of work that involves caring for others, this opportunity has reminded me how good it feels to help.

My father fell at the end of January and fractured his hip. My sister and I both were able to care for him, since she just retired and I wasn't working. I'm realizing how frail my 94 year old father is, and that he won't be with us forever. I've had to get more involved with the family.

My cousins had another grandchild. My children are nowhere near having children. It would never occur to me to 'pressure' them. Their paths are their own, and they may end up not having children at all. Truth is, Greg and I were married ten years before we decided to have a baby. Would I like a grandchild? Sure. Do I expect one? Not really. I know both have said they 'plan' to have children, but I can see it not happening. Given how dysfunctional Greg's and my families were, it's difficult to be upset that this particular DNA combination doesn't continue. And because of cousins, the DNA will be passed down through them. Other than that, the ripples of our existence will affects others' lives.

Our second granddaughter was born in APRIL. That being said, we have only seen her once. They came to NC from WI when my husband was in recovery from surgery & infection. It was a joy to see her. For various reasons, our relations with this wonderful son and daughter in law are somewhat strained, and we are not communicating as much as we used to. It is just a reality. I feel sad that we will not have a relationship with these 2 grandkids far north like we have with our other grandchildren. Our son tends to hunker in and stop communicating. We will not have a close relationship with them (the kids) but they are here in the world, and we are extremely happy for them (the parents) to have their family, as they had 3 tragic miscarriages prior to these kids. We are happy for them.

My lovely little cousin got engaged a few weeks ago. She's been through so much so I am happy she has this to look forward to throughout the year. She chose me to be her Maid of Honor which well ... is an honor!

My father passed away a year ago August, which still feels like a recent milestone. More recently, my children's other grandfather passed away. This leaves me as the patriarch of my family (aside from my older brother) which feels significant. It makes me think about my responsibilities in that regard. It also makes me think a lot about death -- my own, and others. Another huge milestone was the departure of my middle daughter to college. This is huge, as it leaves me and my son the only people at home. And that signals that he will be growing up and leaving soon, also. I have a lot to think about with these departures, and the future coming.

Probably the most significant milestone for the family has been Huck starting to really talk. I think it has brought us together a bit, in a way. Partly just because we all enjoy trying to engage with him communicating, helping each other decipher what he's saying, and just watching all this happen. But also there seems to be something less tangible at work with it. He's just more present, in a way (which is also due to him being more mobile), and he's been kind of a glue binding the rest of us to the whole.

The major milestone of the year is the decision to end our marriage. It's affected every aspect of my life - upended my job and the business I've spent the last five years building from nothing; changed my friendships (for the better); and gotten me on the path to the life I want to be living.

Opening my new store. This has meant a lot more work for me and longer hours. The impact is that we spend a lot less time together. Has also motivated me to look for a way to sell the business and retire in a couple of years. Jeff has become a really good cook!

My youngest sister graduated from college and all of us girls have moved out of the house. We're officially adults and my parents are officially empty nesting. I moved far away - but not too far away - and it's given me a comfortable amount of space to live my life. I sure do miss them though.

The long awaited milestone of my older son moving out of our home has occurred, but is not yet a "done deal". Just within the past 2 months, he moved out to California, which is where my younger son also lives. However, he does not yet have a place to live, or a job, and does not seem to be aggressively enough pursuing either. My husband and I are enjoying our "empty nest" and hoping that it will last. If he gets himself settled, we will be thrilled and relieved. At this point, however, we are hopeful but worried.

My dad has become extremely frail. Death has been the subject on our minds and how we will handle life without my dad. We have had many cathartic conversations and cries about this.

With young kids, I don't think there's any one thing that stands out, rather a long list of smaller things that have happened as we all grow and change. We moved into a new house and have done well settling in and making it our own. As a family we've taken on a paper route, and even though the kids complain, I think it's good that we're doing this at their young age and showing them what it means to start a task and follow it through.

Well, my partner got through her cancer treatment and surgery successfully and is cancer free. I turned 60 - which was a big deal for me personally. These milestones are complimentary in a way: having a spouse who's successfully gone through cancer surgery and is now healthy and doing well and thankful for each day kind of conflicts with my preoccupation with age. We/I should be and am grateful for reaching 60, for being healthy and successful and for having all of the opportunities I've had in life! Each day is a blessing. Each day is precious to be with her and to look forward to a long and happy life together.

My brother has started sending group texts to me and our mother with Ryker's weekend sports recap. It's nice to see my nephew play even if I can't be there in person. Our mom was frustrated at first but is trying to get with how technology can make us feel a bit more like family.

Divorce. Unbelievable. I have been set free and also put into a place of more responsibility for myself. Financially, thank god for my parents, and thank god I can work. No matter what, I tried all I could, did all I could, continued as far as I could go. Thanks, God, thanks everyone, for getting me to this milestone. Thank you for shining the light so I could see. And, oh yeah. Meeting up with the foothill peeps? This called me back to me. Meeting up with Sean, same. Meeting up with Lindy. "This is who I am" I marvelled, "This. This is actually who I am."

The sale of the Rockville house that was the only home my children have ever known was a major milestone for me and my family this year. We learned that home is not a place. Rather, home is where the love is. Wherever we come together, that is home.

I decided to stop talking with my older sibling! one of the best decisions of my life. they (they/ them gender-neutral pronouns) are so incredibly unhealthy and cruel to me, and never listen to what i have to say. i met with our family therapist one-on-one to talk about coming in with A and working on our relationship, but the therapist (who is amazing) said that from what she knows and from what I told her, it would be healthiest for me to just distance myself. When I unfriended them on facebook, it was like a breath of fresh air. It's so good to realize that if somebody is marginalized or mistreated by others, it doesn't mean they have the right to mistreat me.

A major milestone with my family in this past year was when we got a dog. We got a puppy in January and that was our first dog. It was a bug hump to get over for us because we never had one before.

Birthdays... anniversaries... they all go to cause fear. One less moment I have to love and appreciate. One less year to look forward to now that is past. One less time my kid is going to be this age, closer ever to no longer being a kid.

We had a passing of one of our most respected Elders. I felt groundless. He was like a grandparent figure, my Uncle. He was 93.

Very definitely the marriage of my son. I have discovered a side to him i never knew He has proven to be a sensitive, caring, yet firm husband. He loves his wife dearly, and is willing to change where change needs to happen. It has given me such joy to see this marriage slowly blossoming into a beautiful testimony to what God can do in two people He has brought together.

Having our kids experience particular milestones-- Last of the 3 b'nai mitzvah 2nd child turning 16 and driving Eldest child senior in HS so last year all 3 kids at home, on same schedule, etc. This collective "aging" of our children has me reflecting on my parenting, my relationship with my husband and my kids and what comes next, when parenting them moves "left of center" so to speak. How do I prepare myself and my life for this phase of parenting teens and before I know it, parenting 3 young adults?

My sister got married!! This was just a few weeks ago so I am still getting used to thinking of her as a wife, and of her husband as my brother-in-law. This was actually the first Jewish wedding I'd ever been to, so I've been reading and learning a lot about some of the really cool traditions involved. It was such an amazing and special day, and I was so happy to be able to share it with my family, my sisters, my boyfriend and so many other favorite people. We danced the entire night away, somehow the rain held off all day and I had way too much wine at the reception, haha. I think this has affected me more than my brother's wedding a few years ago because I was much more involved in the planning and the events leading up to the big day. It has made me think a lot more about my own future wedding, and to realize that I may actually finally be ready to take that step (once he pops the question, of course!). I have had the time and opportunity to think about what traditions might be important to me to incorporate, and which areas I can skip to save a few dollars, since we're really broke. The idea of having a small and simple wedding and saving our money to put towards a house and kids makes so much sense to me now, and makes me feel very adult and mature. But I can't deny I still want to feel like a princess on my big day, and I'm willing to wait a little longer to figure out how to make that happen =D

My husband bought a restaurant! For the second year in a row the spring brought about a turn in him where he fell into a deep disillusionment with what he was doing and took up with a project that has been an on-going fantasy since I've known him. And for the second time in a row it seems to be working! But it feels different this time. Why? Didn't it feel different last time too? It probably feels different every time. Or at least, I guess that's what I'm always hoping for. That he's found something that turns a corner for him. The bigger milestone of course is that he quit smoking. 20 years a habit, and as of January 2016 it's been over. And it's not a stumbling, clutching process like the other times he's quit. He's not quitting to be better or to try and become something he's not. He's quitting because what he's become doesn't want that anymore. I think that's why things feel different now. I trust him more that he's making decisions based on the reasons he thinks he's making decisions for, and not based on secret escapist fantasies. And I also trust that he's being realistic and rational. He's not chasing a dream anymore. He's working for a dream. It's vastly different. But do I really believe that that's so? Do I really believe that at this time next year I won't be bearing witness to another seismic shift in his focus? I'm too cautious to declare it impossible.

My Nephew was diagnosed with mild Autism, my sister in law and Brother asked a lot of me regarding treatment choices. I felt able as well as saddened by their fear/anxiety as parents. They did an awesome job and still do! -also: My mom had a surgery and heart attack.

I feel so far from my family, I don't know if it really matters at all. I speak to them every couple of weeks, so we don't really have any connection to what is happening in each other's lives, and this intensifies the feelings of loneliness I sometimes have. Not only do I not have a family of my own, but my family of origin is largely absent.

My mom went into assisted living. I'm glad she's more comfortable, but she's also farther away, harder to visit and the reality of her old age is really hitting home.

The biggest milestone was the birth of my daughter in November. A stressful, beautiful, special time for us all... if I could stop time and live in a perfect month I'd choose the 4-6 weeks between mid November and the end of the year. It was perfect, but bloody hard work. Having family visit and friends share our joy was really special. I regret that my wife's family get on so well with us and they live overseas. They're generous to a fault and not fabulously wealthy, but my own family live not too far away and are far less engaged. I know you can't have it all but I wish they'd be more involved. I'd like my dad to move to Fairford to be near us, be involved with my daughter's childhood and stop living in a house that's too big for him and make some money from downsizing. He can't face the prospect of moving just yet though. I hope that changes soon.

There really hasn't been a major milestone with my family this past year. However, I managed to disengage from an asset I was holding for my dad to help him when he asked. It has cost me over $5000 and stress from city notices, risk of being sued for damages, having to deal with realtors, etc. It is not my problem anymore - now to try and recover my money. A temporary "help" became my long term "hindrance" and I am glad to be rid of it.

Pregnancy! See question 1! It's affected all aspects of my life, emotionally, physically, financially -- everything! It's amazing how preparing for a new family member changes everything.

Moving to another state, away from the family that I swore I would never be far from, has been a major milestone. I know people do this all the time, including my parents who moved so much farther at at time when staying in touch was much harder, but it's still very strange. Our whole relationship has changed, and then you add me getting married on top of that and everything is being redefined. We still talk as often as we did before I moved, but not being able to go hang out with any of them on a moment's notice is tough.

My grandfather died. He has had serious memory deterioration for a long time, and we hadn't spoken in years. But knowing that nothing would help now, that someone who loved me and whom I loved is gone from the face of this earth forever... it's harder than I expected. I found myself saying kaddish for the first time, and meaning it, for someone I thought I had really lost a long time ago.

The major milestones and events are the same across many of these questions this year. My last child graduated from high school and went to a great private Christian college. My husband and I moved to another state to start new jobs in our fields. We suffered a fire and loss of property in the move, but no harm was done to us or our elderly Great Dane. My granddaughters turned two and four. All three of my kids are in college. All of this has made me very busy and very worn out. I have gained almost 15 pounds in 3 months over the summer. I am happy with the results except for how I have not taken care of myself while taking care of everyone else. I need to take care of myself again. That is a goal for the following year.

The major milestone as a family over the past year has been preparing to adopt a child. I've always known I wanted to be a parent--and yet, last fall when Avi and I decided to research our options for adoption, it hit me that we were undertaking the biggest decision and commitment of our lives and that they would, and I don't say this to be dramatic, significantly change. This was incredibly daunting, and it remains so. What does it mean to assume full responsibility for another human life--physically, emotionally, psychologically, and ethically? What will my days and weeks look like? What parts of my life do I need to give up, or at least recalibrate or trim, to make room for this human life and unprecedented set of responsibilities? This process to date has spurred me to be more reflective on how I spend my time and what I want out of life--where I want to be, as a person and as a partner and as part of a family in 30 years, 50+ years. I've never thought about these things on quite this level before. While I'm in awe of this responsibility and still processing the changes that will take place, I'm feeling much more at peace with all these questions and am beginning to assimilate the prospect of being a parent into my identity and regular consciousness. It's scary and also exciting and emotional in so many wonderful ways.

My son had his Bar Mitzvah. I was very hesitant to require that my son do a Bar Mitzvah given his significant learning disabilities. However, he proved me wrong. He worked hard on all aspects of preparing for his Bar Mitzvah. He learned more than Hebrew or how to read a torah portion. He gained several skills including strategies for learning and retaining information as well as some key speech techniques. It helped me to see this Bar Mitzvah process as more than a chore done to please others who I might think of as standing in judgement over my parenting or Jewish practice. I learned that this process, when done right, can have life changing positive influences for the child and the family.

We survived the first year of college and now he's moved into his "own place". I have definitely struggled letting go.

Moving back in with my parents, aged 26, to open arms. Leaving London felt like a bit of a crash, I felt like I was falling to bits and I probably was - for far longer than I realised too. They quickly helped me back on my feet however and facilitated a safe environment for me to convalesce and rediscover myself. They ask for little back and have really been there, and I will always be grateful for that.

Glen and JinWen visited and they bought a house. Her mother has come and she likes Glen. They are developing their life together....if only the immigration issues are soon resolved

My Mom's 6th anniversary past. It was definitely one of the hardest years without her, and probably the second time I almost cried during Kaddish. It's so surreal to think back on how different my life has looked since she's been gone.

Well, I signed up for Medicare!! That means i reached a certain age :) I was really scared about this next stage in life. However, that fear was generated from afar. Now that I am here I think i can go through this, can enter this next stage, with more confidence. There is still lots of stuff to do, lots of things to get done - on my time - and this next stage looks like it will be as fulfilling as any other stage has been.

Sending my brother off to college, making me an only child at home.

I moved in with the love of my life and we began to make a home together. this has been wonderful, exciting , hard, painful and probably much more. It has caused me to look more closely at myself and how I move through life day to day. it has not been easy but it has been wonderful.

My father's death. He suffered from dementia/Alzheimers -and I didn't realize the toll it took on the family. We knew, though, that my mother was not just losing her husband of 63 years, but her job of taking care of him as well. Over the year, we have seen her blossom into her own woman. What I have been surprised, however, is how down I can get for no apparent reason - It is something I am struggling with. As the anniversary of his death draws near, I am bracing myself - this is a journey - mourning, grieving recovering.

The single most major milestone that happened since last Rosh Hoshana/Yom Kippur was my unexpected pregenancy, and deciding to carry the baby to term, while asking for help from my family in order to provide for our 3rd child. This affected us in many ways, making us optimistic, realistic, and overwhelmed with joy and sleeplessness and logistical difficulties, while making us so happy to see our children interact and learn so much. Last Rosh Hoshana I was not pregnant. This time I have a 17 month old and an almost-4-month-old (plus my older child). It is amazing what can happen in a year, if you let it.

Unfortunately, my dog passed away and it has been rather devastating. Things just aren't the same without him. What's more upsetting is that I didn't get to spend much time with him for the past 5 years due to being away at university.

Honestly there were zero major milestones with my family this past year. I can't think of anything. Man, my 10Q this year is super-boring.

My grandfather turned 100. I am filled with so much love for him; he remains charming, gracious, witty, and generous, even at 100. I feel overcome with emotion whenever I think about him. I will be forever grateful I got to experience that birthday with him.

last year Ivan become a bar mitzvah and this summer Adam went off to college I find myself happy and full of life and feeling freer than ever to be myself my true self

My father died in April 2015. Hit me harder than expected, mainly because none of the 6 people in my immediate family called me so I found out a full 2 days later via an Aunt who called to check on me. Wound up in ER, found out I have high blood pressure, so followed up with ton of Dr appointments unexpectedly... Had to fly to LA to rent car and drive my very difficult brother 5 hours to funeral to make sure he'd be there. Very tough day because my family still treats me like I'm lower than dirt because I left their religion 30 years ago. Mystically, when I returned to work, wound up working with people who'd been in the same religion/had same experience. And also saw lots on YouTube telling me I was not alone in this...and that I might have something special to offer others who struggle with a similar problem... So there was hope. But I still haven't processed the pain of realizing how much my immediate family - as kind and loving as they might appear to the outside world - really screwed me up and hurt me over the years with this intentional withholding, this cruel self-righteous, hypocritical, ignorant, unloving "godliness". I turned out really good in spite of this! I'm a great human being!! I want to love them, but I despise their ugly character.

We had our one-year anniversary! And somewhere along the way we decided we were each other's people. And i couldn't be happier.

The biggest one for the family was David quitting his job. It's been so great to be able to focus at work without needing to balance with early departures. And David is so happy being able to focus on Leo. I wish we could do this forever. I love Leo so much but I'm just not good at the extracurricular coaching thing. I'm so glad David is.

It's been a quiet family year. We went from a year of uncertainty into a year of settling in.

Although my sister had a baby, I think my answer is that my mom, for the first time, found and exercised her passion. I feel like I helped contribute to this and empower her to follow her dreams, so in a lot of great ways, we've ended up even closer - which didn't seem possible. I've been able to apply the skills I've piled up over the years - graphic design, writing, branding, web design - to help her, and that makes me very happy.

I turned 40 this year! It's caused me to both reflect on how grateful I am for my amazing, loving family of origin, and also grapple with questions about whether I'll eventually have a family of my own. I also keep coming back to theme of time—how can I be a better steward of the time I've been given? How can I make the most of my time, (relative) youth, and health?

My 94-year-old mother has always had anger issues, but it seems to be amplified over the past year or so, plus the paranoia has been increasing. She is more hurtful and insulting. I've been having a hard time lately not losing my temper, even though I know it makes things worse. I need to be the adult 100% of the time, but I'm only human, and I can't quite achieve that. Thank God for my partner, who will take care of her when I can't be around her. My goal is to disengage BEFORE I lose my temper.

We bought and moved into our own house in Leiden. It took time - we bought it in August but could not all move in until October and renovations continued for some time. But it felt, and still feels wonderful. Even a year later with all the renovations still to do, we love it.

Nora became a toddler. Having two children is amazing and also exhausting!

My brother got divorced from his wife of 10 years. They dated since they were highschoolers, around the age of 15, so it has been a big deal for all of us. It's made me think of the fabric of social life as humans and how delicate that is.

My father made a conscientious effort to be a part of my life. We've been through so much and I so appreciate how unbelievable he's been. He calls regularily and makes an effort to catch up every few weeks. I'm so proud of him. It's also softened me, I no longer hold onto old stories, I am able to see him for the beautiful, flawed human he is and I love him for everything he is.

A major milestone is moving away from my family and friends back home and making the giant step of going to Pittsburgh. It has definitely been a positive experience, hard on my family, but right in the end.

This year I think the biggest milestone my family has gone through is getting my brother into school. I guess me getting engaged might also count. But having him in school means that the family is doing well. We are moving forward and I am exceedingly proud of how well we work together. I am super proud of the man he is becoming and the path he has chosen for himself. Last year this time he had no direction now he's moving forward this is good.

This year I reached my limit with my parents and have been setting new boundaries and providing a lot of feedback. It's been emotional and exhausting but so rewarding and good for me to stand up for myself and make it clear that I need something different than what was the old norm. I was discouraged for a long time but I'm also hopeful for the future. I think better things are coming.

My sister had a baby this year and it brought stress to the broader family in navigating competing religious beliefs and needs. BUT, we have moved past it and are all enjoying having this wonderful being in our lives.

Well, I bought an apartment and moved here with my partner. It definitely has made me feel more grown up and very conscious about how I spend my money.

I can't think of any major milestones in my family but I think I can say that I've realized how differently my parents see the world now and how they don't necessarily agree with one another's parenting techniques. I think it's clearer to me now the things that I know I do not what to do as a parent, if ever I become one in the future. I think this has started to drive me even farther away from them than I already was. On the up side, I feel that I'm much closer than I've ever been to my siblings.

I guess I can't really say that I have a family. I have a mother and a sister, but my mother doesn't love me anymore and my sister is... Yeah. I have family in my best friend Shelby and my not-technically-grandma Gloria, but I'm not sure that qualifies for this. I have Dad and Carolee back in Maine, but we rarely talk and I worry about that, about drifting. Mostly, I'm nervous about either lying to them about my relationship or telling them and them disapproving. I worry constantly, about the 'what if's'. So, I guess the only family I could say I certainly have is the family of me and my love. If that does count, still not sure if it does, our major milestone is that he finally got his cabin built!! Almost single-handed. Besides that, and what is possibly more important to me, is that now we regularly say 'I love you' to each other, almost every time we talk, whether in person, online, or on the phone. This means the world to me. I get mad sometimes and I don't want to talk to him, but all he has to say is 'I'm sorry, I love you baby' and I'll melt all over again. Love is an incredible thing.

When Grandpa died two days after Josh and I got engaged...it was such a blur of feeling and sadness and memories. Watching him decline from dementia for two years was the most painful thing I have experienced in my life so far, and something I hope never to see again in a family member. I am so glad I had the time in New York to be able to visit him and Grandma Laya. Even though dementia took away a lot of his memory, it didn't take away his personality, his sense of humor, his love of puzzles, his friendliness towards others, his love of dogs. My favorite story was when he pulled the fire alarm in his nursing home floor, and then gave the middle finger to the security guard when they came to see what was going on. Or how he would roll into other people's rooms and the nurses station just to say hi. He was always himself even when his memories were gone, and I am forever grateful to have been able to visit him and experience that bittersweet part of our lives together. I am a richer person for it.

My parents finally sold the apartment, aleviating a lot of financial strain, but also they've done so much work in their relationships with themselves and each other. For the first time I feel like my mother can hear me and acknowledge my needs. I hope it paves the way for my siblings to heal their relationships with them too.

I don't know if it counts as a milestone, but I stood up to my brother and it is painful and also an achievement for me. I did not have the option to escape his volatility or my dad's volatility when I was younger. I didn't have a way to go, or a place to go, or an understanding that I didn't have to be subjected to that. And so when he became aggressive and verbally abusive with me this year when I was visiting, I left. It didn't matter that it was 1 in the morning. I left. I realized that I didn't have to write it off as him just having a moment and I didn't need to wait for it to blow over. And I certainly didn't need to think that I did anything to provoke or deserve his rage. I'm left trying to figure out how to manage those relationships because I love my nephews and don't want to punish them for my brother's behavior, but I also don't need to put myself into a position where he has the opportunity to harm me in any way. I haven't figured it out yet, but I think it is important that I left when I needed to.

We lost our last parent this year. It is a weighty consideration that we, now, are the elders. Their voices are silent, other than in our memories and hearts.

Adam broke his arm on the monkey bars during recess and the experience allowed me to see that he has matured so much over the last year. He was such a champ and rose to the occasion without too much screaming and crying. I think the whole experience helped him to see that he is capable of so much and since then he has tried more new foods, stayed in his bed after I take him back in the middle of the night, been significantly more mature in contentious situations with Hannah and David (not always, but often) and has done extraordinarily well in Kindergarten. According to Mrs. Kaur, he is helpful, respectful and friendly...what more can you ask for? Having our baby start Kindergarten has been a bittersweet transition. It's difficult to see them grow up so quickly, but on the other hand, it's beautiful to see them reach the next milestone.

For Christmas I took my family out to dinner at Olive Garden. Though Olive Garden is a bit basic, it was significant because it was the first time my entire family had gone to a restaurant together in my entire life. I was pleased to do that for them.

My Gramps passed away. Just before my birthday. I miss him terribly. It's been over six months now, but I stilll feel tears coming and my throat starting to swell when I remember he is gone

Having one of our sons graduate college and my other, now a senior, graduate next May will be a joy/dream come true. I have worked hard to break the mold from my mother father's generation to mine. Now my family has two options... blue collar or white collar. If you work with your hands... know why!

I met my family - it fulfills me with lots of happiness and beliefs in different "higher things" but especially in FFS!

Well, just because I don’t want every answer for this thing to be about cancer, I’ll say that one of the major milestones that happened this year was our youngest son Isaac graduating from elementary school and moving on to middle school. We spent 10 years of our family life involved with that elementary school, and loved it, but now we have moved on and it was sad to leave it. Plus puberty is hitting for Isaac so now we also have a new phase of relating with both our kids—teenagers definitely require different parenting skills and ways of relating. It’s been bittersweet to see both our boys growing and becoming more independent. On the one hand it’s great to have a little more freedom and not have to constantly be attentive to their every need; on the other hand it’s a separation and feels a little lonely. I am trying to cherish the bits of “little boy” I still have left in Isaac and also enjoy the “big boy” bits for both my sons.

My parents moved to a new place. This has been a big adjustment for all of us, but they seem to be settling in. I am grateful that they no longer have to shovel their own snow and such, and that they continue to be healthy enough to live independently.

My dad had a stroke in November. He is very lucky and made a full recovery. My parents have always been relatively healthy but it's made me think about what kind of support they will need from me as they get older. I may need to move closer or have them move here. The

My daughter graduated and went to college. I thought this was going to affect me differently. I thought I was going to feel lost. At times I find myself feeling upset that I am not in greater contact with her and frustrated that I still have to work so hard at the relationship with my child when it doesn't feel reciprocal. Yet I remind myself that I am the adult in the equation and if there is something that I want to be different then I need to communicate these things.

I guess my sisters pregnancy is pretty major. She is very happy and looking forward to becoming a mother. I am very proud of her. I look forward to becoming an uncle, and hope that I can be a good one.

I don't think there has been one. My grandma got knee surgery, my sister will start college next year, but nothing big has happened this past year. And that's fine. 2015 was a big enough year for everyone. It's nice to have a quiet year, with nothing really happening.

Husband's accident. Had to rely on prayer energy to keep me afloat during some stressful times. It did keep me afloat. Life has changed. Need to simplify my life. Need to clear up my finances. Need to de-stress and lose cortisol-induced weight. Need to figure out what type of life I want for myself, assuming that I survive my life with husband, (without having a stress-induced coronary). Need to analyze, make some decisions, and start working on designing a life...while still paying for current obligations.

This milestone within my family was a doozy! It totally tested my faith and continues to do so. Each day comes with a high and low and the more I realize and ready myself for the ride, the more apt I am to be thankful for the challenge which ultimately is testing my faith. I feel fortunate that I have this belief and hope that my ability to surrender to His path for me can serve as an example for others who are equally challenged but may not want to ask, or want to believe, in the way He rolls!

My sister's husband left her, and two weeks later my uncle was diagnosed with terminal cancer. It was a horrible few months. My sister was devastated and having an awful time with her ex, and my uncle declined unbelievably quickly - he was dead within two months of being diagnosed. I don't know how it's affected me. I feel like I should have learnt something from it, like living each day like it's your last, or being kind to people because you never know when your shitbag husband is going to abandon you and you'll find yourself alone having alienated all your friends. Would it be bad if it hadn't affected me at all? Is this a somewhat pointless answer?

Papa has been in the hospital three times in the last three months. Mom is worn to a sharp wire, and he is sad and tired. Amy gave birth to twin girls! It's all a circle of life thing, it seems to me. With Papa, I'm affected by feeling like the burden of things left unsaid is too great to dive into now, and with Amy... I wish we were closer, but I'm happy for her. Her life seems to have expanded and gotten cozier, all at once.

Grandma and Grandpa had to move out of the only house I've ever known them in to a nursing home this year as Gram's dementia is progressing and Gramps fell and broke his hip. It's been really difficult watching not only them go through this but also seeing Mums have to deal with her parents' decline. She's been so strong, flying out whenever possible and making sure they are in the best situation they can be in, I've tried to support her in the best way I can: listening and commiserating. It will not get easier, but that's what growing up is, I guess. On the other side of the coin: Marie and Nils each have a child now. This hasn't affected me so far, but in a grander, generational sense it's a huge milestone.

My niece Logan had her bat mitzvah this year. I really enjoyed watching her delight in the process and services. At the end of the day, regardless of your age, faith is a beautiful way to connect everyone in our family. It's not about how faithful one is or how one practices, it's the opportunity to share with one another in the joys of the Jewish life practices and milestones. She's the last one in my immediate family to cross this threshold. Now onto the next generation :-).

This past year has been the best year yet for my relationship with my family. On January 1, 2016 I made a vision board that included "family healing" and I truly believe my family is healing all sorts of wounds, together. On Oct 6 I closed on a 750 square foot home in Highland Park. My parents and sister came up (along with Janelle and Jonathan) to help me paint, do repairs, and move in. I've never felt more appreciative and connected to my family as I did this past weekend. The four of us went out to dinner on Saturday night to a local pizza place and laughed together and shared stories. It felt... like the good kind of family. This family healing feels like a major milestone.

My mother was diagnosed with stage four breast, bone, lymph, and liver cancer a little more than a year ago. This has upended everything I know and understand. I am still trying to rebuild it all, and figure out the new weak spots in need of attention, as well as reinforce my shelters for the storms to come.

Sharon got married. Wow. I' m not her person anymore which feels weird. But good for her. I guess. Some of it is my fault for moving, I guess...

In the past year, I've been broken in a lot of ways. I have cried tears of loss, raged at the poor choices some of my kids have made, and learned how to be in the moment and appreciate the circumstances I find myself in each day. The milestone has been that I am reconnecting with my family in ways that I never have before. Each day, I think about each person in my family and what might be doing. Life is not all about me any longer. It is about the connections we make with those close to us. Not that everything is wonderful. Far from it. But, I've learned that the only things that matter are our memories, our relationships and how we contribute positive or negative energy in the world. I choose to leave the world a better place for the time I am in it.

The major milestone.... my ex husband has finally come out as gay to me and to our daughter. He is currently living with a man. After so much doubt, and denial. So much stuff to work through. It has affected me more than I imagined it would. When I was ignorant (and he was still confused about it) I thought that there was something wrong with me; that I was somehow faulty because he didn't really "want" me the way I felt a man should want a woman. Was I too fat? too cold? what? It took a long time to work through that and even though by the end of our marriage I knew he was gay, he was still in denial. Finally hearing him come out was somehow liberating. There is a new understanding, a new openness, and it feels good.

Again with the Cymbalta and getting my mind back. Being able to resume partnership with my husband rather than being the subject of his caregiving.

My brother went away to college this year. It's his first time living away from home. I'm so incredibly proud of him. I'm excited for him and his future. In the time he's been away, I feel like we talk more. Over the phone of course, but it's nice. My brother and I have always been incredibly different people and of course that leads to awful arguments sometimes. When he calls me though, or takes my calls, I can tell he misses me. I can tell that he feels what I feel. This sibling emotional bond that we share. I hope he knows that I'll always be there for him and that he can turn to me if things get rough.

I don't know if there's been a milestone in the saga of my sister. Just more of the same- lies, crocodile tears, thievery, addiction, selfishness, lather, rinse, repeat. She might be facing actual jail time, which might be a major milestone. I feel strangely unaffected 99% of the time, and then 1% of the time- most frequently, when I'm at someone else's wedding and see/hear the sister give a loving speech- I fall apart. I used to feel guilty about that 99%, but I don't anymore.

I hate to keep going back to this, but my niece's suicide changed so much for me and my family. We are different people now and this traumatic, confusing death changed the way we parent, the way we feel about healthcare, our motivations and fear - everything. It has made joy a "Goal" instead of a happy byproduct of living. We long for pure joy again. It took away our comfort and replaced it with worry, anger and fear. The process of finding our new normal is a very slow one. While I don't consider us to be ruined, a certain amount of ignorant bliss that most people enjoy is gone for us. My kids are 8 and 10. It feels a bit like they were robbed of that.

laurie retired from farming- 5 out of the 6 sibs were all together at nicole's wedding. got to see my brothers together for the first time in 20 years.

I think buying the house is the biggest thing! It's taught me some things about my relationship with my parents - at each new milestone, there will be push and pull. Each time I take another adult step I think it becomes real to them that I"m my own person, and consequently, they double down on how tightly they hold on. I need to be careful about setting boundaries with them to reinforce what is and is not appropriate.

This past year last year-ish, I lost my last remaining grandparent. I didn't think it would affect me so much because I wasn't that close to him, but it makes me realize that if all goes naturally, my parents will be next to get old and die. And I get very jealous now of my friends with grandparents. It especially makes me miss my paternal grandmother Gladys who I was so close to. I wish I could get her advice and a hug.

My first cousin (out of my first cousins- hehe) Chris got married September '15. I'm not particularly close with Chris. I hadn't been to a wedding in a while, and the weekend was a powerful one. The weekend was one of those times where it all seems to run together.Happy little moment. From my uncle asking me "you okay?" when I was contemplating throwing up on the ferry to Block Island, to seeing what it's like when two people come together. It's a tiny phenomenon when two people bring together their lives to create their own. That weekend shaped my views on relationships, weddings, and marriage. I had spent a lot of last year wallowing in a bad relationship that had turned into a forced friendship. I wouldn't like to admit it, but I broke up with Matt and had the toughest time separating myself from him for all of 2015. Part of it was his behavior that was attention seeking, and part of it was wanting him to still wish he had me and regret what he did. I still needed that support from him, and it took me a good while to snap out of that. I don't think the wedding and my issues with Matt were connected, but it gave me perspective to what life could be like.

Dave, Cameron, and I have really made our own little family over the past year. Although we moved in together a little over a year ago, the past 7-10 months have really felt like we've created something just for us, our little haven. I have never lived with a significant other before, and it was something I was anxious about. My feelings have ebbed and flowed sometimes I've frustrated and stubborn and at other times I've just stared at him sleeping or seen him mowing the lawn and been in awe of the great love that we share. Just this past weekend I thought for the first time, I should just make him my husband, but that might just be because I miss him, since he's in Malaysia, and my romantic side is showing. I see the shift in love from a honeymoon lust and breathtaking joy to a solid and sturdy foundation and a consistent and glowing core.

my parents are retired, married for 40 years and enjoying life together. I'm happy for them and still wonder how i could make my relationship with them more close.

My niece Stephanie had a daughter, Hatsie. it is the first time I have been glad a child was born in quite a long time. Stephanie and Steve are wonderful caring people and so I believe Harriet will have every opportunity to grow up to be an enlightened spirit with a chance to make the world a better place to live. Honestly, all of the clan that have proceeded her will be lucky to evolve to the degree they are aware of their own spirituality and the wonder of the universe they live in.

Commitment to our faith and lasting family back to church. I am on the right path. It is changing my heart.

My younger sister got married. Both of my sisters have found partners and settled down incredibly quickly, and young, for this day and age. I'm happy that they are happy, of course. It's highlighted to me (and everyone!) how different my path is from theirs. Being gay, I am forced into a different lifestyle. But further than that, I have chosen to make my lifestyle one of adventure and experiences. Partly, this is through not having met someone to be my partner yet. However, I have been fortunate this year to be able to look upon this as a good thing. I am happy that I am my own person, I am very capable alone, and I am also happy being alone. I would love somebody to share my life with. But for now, I am still the happiest I have ever been.

The informing my parents of our relationship, our break up, and our conscious re-coupling. The silence I faced when on the phone to my mum, walking to Waterloo station from work on a Saturday night after shift, when I told her that we were giving it a go. Her response - silence, followed by - 'what do you want me to say'. The hurt that those words caused in the 2 seconds it took her to formulate them. The shame that it brought around Sam and the relationship - and the reluctance to even try to bring him into the fold. Why would I put him through that, when they didn't want him there, and in truth, I was totally not ready to have him there. So I didn't, and I continued with my family and my Judaism like he didn't exist, other than at Rachel's Aufruf and Laz's 60th birthday lunch where I was plagued with a total lack of being able to picture him being there with me. Inability to place him in any Jewish context whatsoever. And instead of talking abot this with him, with my parents, with myself, shutting it off, ploughing on through, and letting the destruction seep in. Going on a date with ROJ to make me feel like I was remembering I was Jewish. Would that finally make them happy - a Rabbi? Alternatively, on telling them, in August, that we were giving it another go and getting back together - my dad's total immediate instinctive response 'we want you to be happy, and if he will make you happy'. And yet, and still. Marj invited DAP to have Rosh Hashanna dinner with us. Tells me to wear something pretty. Why, because Sam is far far away in Ethiopian lands? Because she doesn't yet believe in the relationship because I'm not sure I totally yet believe in the relationship?

Cambria going to college, William starting high school and Hannah getting her driver's license. All make me feel old and remind me that in just a few years I will be totally alone as they take off to have their own lives.

My mom turned 60 and her birthday celebration was almost magical-- filled with love, community, good friends and fantastic food. It started with my sister (who lives across the country) surprising us for our birthdays (my sister, my mom and I have birthdays within 5 days of each other). We had a wonderful summer, dinner outside in the town that I live in and afterwards, I got to share my new apartment with my sister. The following night was a celebration of my mom-- good friends filled our house with love and happiness. The next night was my party in which my friends squished into my apartment in celebration. The joy and love that was shared that weekend still makes me smile when I think about it. I was reminded of how amazing our community is and how great our friends are. I am truly grateful for each of them and the impact that they have on my life.

In the last year, I've actually only spent a couple of weeks around my family in March. My day trip to Yosemite with mom rings true as a really nice bonding experience, as does my night out with the girls and Kendall. Mary moving in with dad would probably be considered pretty major, but she's now with Jane so that doesn't seem as big of a deal anymore. Kendall (and Makayla and Sophia) are growing up and getting older. Mom finally split with the loser boyfriend and has gone on Tinder and other dating apps due to my encouragement. Dad's begun a new company of his own, which I actually am quite proud and interested in. So I guess we've all made forward progress without anything particularly noteworthy.

My daughter was accepted to college. She's the first person on both sides to go to a 4-year college. It has stressed me out because I need to find the money for everything she needs. But I have never been more proud of her in my life.

The only major milestone I can think of is my graduation, which is very self-centered. Because I have already talked about how it affected me. I can think about how it affected my family. Then I'm thinking about how my actions affect people. I think we also were affected by Mia being in Florida. We were so proud of her and nervous for her. It showed me that she's growing up.

engagement - pretty good that everyone is heading down the right path lisa getting out and around on her own - pizza joint, new hair place, still odd about some places though

We bought a house! I am proud that we found a house we could afford (with a lot of help from my mom) in a neighborhood, Mount Airy, that we love. It's not perfect but it's a start and it has lots of potential if we put the care in. We had the house rewired and didn't have time to paint so there are patches on every wall but we won't burn in an electrical fire. We have finally planted our roots somewhere we can imagine being in for years to come. OK, maybe I want a bigger house in 5-7 years but we're in this neighborhood for the long haul. How has it affected me? It has stressed me out but it has also relieved some stress because our mortgage is less than our previous rent. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by everything I want to do to make the house beautiful, welcoming and cozy, a sanctuary. But we will do it piece by piece. Another milestone is that I got a job and I love that I'll be making more money than I have in my life (which isn't saying much but still) and is a job I can be proud to tell be about, a job in which I'll be really doing good helpful work and a job with colleagues I think I will really connect with. All of these milestones have scared me but overall, I feel more confident. I feel better about myself.

The house my grandparents lived in for over 55 years got sold. We had to go through boxes and boxes of stuff and bumped into amazing memories and unknown stories. It made me miss them so much, but also appreciate the times we had together.

Not exactly a milestone, but packing, and looking at old photos, just made me so sad. What happened to us? Why is everyone so unhappy? Can we really right this ship? It is so depressing, and so easy to just cut my losses with the previous generation, but I don't want to do that. I think, before, I wouldn't have really taken that in, and now, I feel like I can actually grieve about the state of my family and the relationships that are part of that. That's a good thing, but it's really tough.

My family? I feel like things are pretty normal. My sister came back from traveling abroad; she seems happy about the whole thing. My aunt got engaged! That's probably the big one. There's been much sadness since my uncle passed; it's nice to see the potential for a new beginning. He seems very nice!

My sister graduated from college! Joyous occasions are always difficult in our dysfunctional family, but even moreso now that Mom isn't around to be there. B unleashed really heavy news on S as she was walking into her final recital, which watered a seed of anger towards him that's been flourishing ever since. Thankfully, he didn't do the same thing at her graduation, despite the fact that he barely acknowledged it as a wrong thing to've done. Whew, tangent. Back to milestone: I'm really proud of S to have finished school despite how absolutely difficult her life was during it. I've always been afraid for her, her whole life, about being down on herself, having low confidence, not thinking she's worthy or, even worse, that she is bad or has done something wrong. Now that she finished college very successfully, has a partner she's excited about, and a "good job," I think that she's on solid ground.

My sister turned 30 and took a major first step in her career in the law. I'm so proud of her and inspired by her drive, intelligence and determination My brother is going to be a dad. To be honest I'm bemused and curious about this. I don't like him, and don't enjoy spending time with him so am pleased he lives abroad!

We bought a house!!! We moved!! We got another dog! We're just all more settled. Kids are in their last new schools (until college)

we're all under the same roof for the first time in maybe 10 years! it's a mixed bag to me. good to have parents around (at all times) but sometimes it's overwhelming and i just want to be alone. it's good i've got my own floor where I *can* be by myself. too easy to check out from the outside world and just live in here with the fam, where i know i'm loved and supported. built-in excuse for "not living." my relationship with my mother is not as open as it was via facetime in london. maybe harder face-to-face or i hold her partially responsible for a lot of the recent pain and so i withdraw.

I don't have a family. Each year the anniversary of my parents' death rolls round and I tend to mark my mother's passing more than my father's - it was 22 years this year - by remembering something nice about her and being grateful she didn't live into a lonely and bitter old age attended by illness. But I still miss my parents. Mum would have been 100 next February. I know I'll cry.

My niece died, as well as two aunts. On the other hand My aunt's great-great grandson was born on her birthday. And my daughter got married and is very happy. For some reason, the deaths have crystalized my depression & I am having trouble navigating the loss of my niece, and because of his grief, my oldest brother's attention. I counted on his support for all these years, and though I cannot know how deep his sorrow is, I feel exquisitely isolated. I am working hard (sometimes too hard) but am having trouble accomplishing anything else. I have trouble getting to synagogue at all.

The only major thing that has happened in the family was the death of my grandma. She was always the rock of the family and always seemed to bring us together. Her passing again brought the family together but it's a shame that is what only brings the family together: weddings and funerals.

My uncle had a heart transplant in July. We had been waiting for it, even praying for it, but it's different when you're actually in the middle of the thing itself. My dad drove to see him every day and stayed in Pittsburgh as often as Greg needed to go up there, and Tasha came from Florida to take care of him, and Kosti dropped off the face of the earth. I know now how we would be in a crisis. And I know that we would be okay.

My family met my new boyfriend! I don't think they're in love with him, and that has definitely stuck in my brain...Maybe not in a good way.

I had a baby! It's affected everything about me and my life. I always have something to look forward to everyday and she's the best. I try to soak up and live in every moment so I don't miss anything. She's growing so fast I don't want to have any regrets about looking at my phone or watching tv or something else that's stupid when I can be playing with her. I want to remember everything.

My family has spent time all together, with my little niece. I think she's good for all of us. Over the past few years, we've all slowly started being more open and honest with each other - actually talking about things and sharing. I think this year we've been especially good about that. My family has been incredibly supportive and encouraging through my difficult times (even when they've had times of their own) and I've come to appreciate them even more. I also took my partner to meet my family, and I got to meet his. Those were big milestones that went well and peacefully.

This is an event more than a milestone, but my Pop Pop Larry became ill over the past couple of years and wasn't able to attend my commitment ceremony. It was a big wake up call to me that time is passing quickly. I've grown up with six grandparents and just thought they'd all be there when I got married. He fell into his illness quickly, too. One day, fine, the next, a mess. On a similar but more positive note, my grandmother celebrated her 80th birthday this year. While I was reminded of time passing, it was a beautiful opportunity to reflect on the life she's led so far and the time I've been grateful to share with her as her granddaughter. Getting older sometimes makes me feel like I want to be a child again, when days were endless. And now it's crazy because people my age (29) are starting to have kids. Wasn't it just yesterday that I was back in elementary school?

My Mother's final stages of life; Jake's incarceration, release, commitment (?) to sobriety, failure to maintain sobriety, his quitting his job and losing his girlfriend; Joe's mental instability and refusal to a) get medical and psychological help; b) apply for disability. Mom's death is described in a previous answer. Jake's alcoholism saddens me as I know I can do nothing to prevent his downslide. I have expressed my concern and brought up his patterns of "shooting himself in the foot" whenever he gets close to success. He listens, but his behavior doesn't change. I become discouraged and disappointed at his lack of self-care regarding his patterns of behavior. I also know that there is nothing I can do except love him. Joe has finally decided to apply for disability which requires a medical exam. He agreed for my being in the first assessment session with him. And, so far, he has agreed for my accompanying him to the psychiatrist for evaluation. This is a huge milestone. Stephen's alcoholism (which he will not admit to) is a major factor in the success of both Jake and Joe. They have both complained about it to me. I encourage them to speak with Stephen directly, but they know it is useless. I feel deeply for them and encourage them to do something else. I believe that if I should move into a larger place, they may be more successful; however, they must follow my rules and I am unsure that Jake is able to contain his impulses which would mean a severing of our relationship. This needs mucho communication!

My husband and I are days away from our 10 year anniversary. 10 years ago I was so confident that ours was a love and relationship deeper than the statics that were stacked against us. The last 10 years have shown that there are moments when I still feel that and moments where I have no idea what the hell I am doing. More over, I didn't realize how often I would feel both of those extremes- and how quickly the pendulum would swing between them. We have been together for 18 years and there are moments I can call his every movement and reaction and moments when I don't have any idea who he has become and how he got there. I both love and worry about the space we purposely give each other to evolve and grow and explore independently. Will there be a day when we can no longer find a middle? Will there be a time when we have both moved beyond the "we" and the history that made us? And then he makes me breakfast, and I smile and try to live in the beauty of the moment that is now and love him with all that I am.

No milestones really. Just keeping ourselves alive has been the theme of 2016. I'm discovering anew each day how this has affected me. I find I'm a bit of a nervous wreck now that the danger has passed. I always seem to keep a calm head in a crisis and save my falling apart either in anticipation of events or after recovering from them. Trying to be kind to myself and allow myself to feel all of it now. I feel like both my husband and I have come out the other end different people than we were before. But I don't know if that's something that will actually manifest in our everyday lives or if the transformation has yet to complete. Watch this page I guess.

My grandmother passed away, and my family is drifting apart. She is the glue that held us together. No passover at her house this year with all the aunts and uncles and cousins. I feel like my last true supporter, the person who would always be in my corner, has abandoned me. I know she was very ill and very tired so I feel ashamed about wanting her back so much.

Oh my. We have a house together!! It seemed impossible not so long ago. But we are family now and I am learning so many joys. But also striving to find how to be strong in my own skin to nurture ny health and my art. I am not used to this much sharing of space and time. It is glorious. But I want to be mindful of the time and space we all need with ourselves to build and thrive.

Weil ich krank war, brauchten wir eine Haushaltshilfe. Nuray hatte also von April bis Oktober eine andere Bezugsperson des Morgens als mich. Nuray und Ana haben das super genacht und ich freue mich für sie, dass sie einander so sehr mögen. Gleichzeitig macht es mich traurig so viel Zeit und Nähe mit Nuray verpasst zu haben. Mit Thordis geht mir das ähnlich. Ich vernisse sie, ich habe das Gefühl nicht genug für sie dagewesen zu sein. Vielleicht möchte ich mich einfach mehr in Mütterlichkeit üben.

My sister, who used to live 40 miles away from me accepted a job in another state. This affected me in several ways. This move put her closer to other sisters. I have felt isolated from my siblings in political views and religious views. Now I am isolated from them in miles. I am somewhat relieved, and a bit sad.

The most significant events were negative. I realized that for whatever reason, age, slander or competition that I would find it nearly impossible to go back to the same sort of job that I last held. I also realized that given this depressing prospect, that bankruptcy was my only option to be able to have any sort of a decent future life and retirement.

My family lives so far away, but a milestone was that my little cousin Jessica graduated college. It affected me due to the realization that we are growing up and older. She is no longer my little cousin who I taught to drink from a "big girl cup". She is essentially my peer now, which is a strange feeling because I will always see her as a little girl. Also, I feel that my boyfriend Kota meeting my entire family in December of 2015 was a major milestone. At that point we have been together for almost 1.5 years. It affected me by giving me more of a sense of security and hope for our future together.

The challenge with Dad's changes seems to be defining our family a bit. It's about handling him in a straightforward and sensitive way. I also predict it will be more and more awkward for my relationship with my sister as she becomes more and more angered by this chapter.

My new job has turned my life definitively toward environmental work and toward cultivating home and community with a long term commitment. I feel humbled by the opportunity to finally be in a tenure-track job. It changed the course of my life, dedicating me to a new place, centering our home-making work and my career goals in a way that feels more grounded and clearer than ever before.

My sons graduation, my daughter going into junior year and youngest pushing for his own independence all the while experiencing a hostile divorce. It's made me feel lonely but also clear that the next decade should be spent building for my children's future and my legacy to them. That I can't rely on exterior forces to define my life.

Our family reunion on my Dad's side was held this year - once every five years. Connects me with my roots, and makes me proud. The years pass by and we take note that for some it may be there last, or one of their last ones to attend... Josh turned 16 and I helped him to buy a car. He has so much more freedom - gets himself to and from school and homes. Learning to make decisions, to have patience, to take risks, and what he wants in life. I have less time with him on a daily basis. Looking for new ways to remain connected but not overbearing. Sam went back to college, so proud! He's physically not in town now. Noticing that we schedule time together, and that's nice. And, noticing I don't see him on a weekly basis. Figuring out how as a parent to let go, how to deal with not having him physically in my life as much, and how to still be a parent.

The passing of my father. It has affected me in so many ways that I don't even know all the ways yet. Watching my Mother & family go thru this has made me a more compassionate and empathetic person. I haven't really concentrated on my on feelings about this, and I hope that my coping mechanism doesn't come back to bite me. Burying my emotions is something I've always done, but I know that they will make their way back to the surface in one way or another.

My mom retired, which I think was good for her, but it adds to my general worries about how she will do as she gets older and lives alone so far from my sister and me. I don't really want her to live any closer, because neither of us can actually stand having her around, but I feel obligated as her child to make sure that she's well taken care of, and I worry that as she gets older, she'll need more from us.

Separation. Is has affected us a lot. My son got a bit more mature and seem to understand and accept whats going on. However, my daughter does not talk to me anymore. And it became impossible to talk to my (ex-) wife. The family fell apart because of this process and there is a risk that fractions are created (boys against girls) which diverge in the next coming months.

My Grandma moved in with my parents... Both my mother and my grandmother needed my support to figure out this step. I got much more closer to my mother because of that.

We went on a family vacation. One week uninterrupted and away from work. We haven't done a full family vacation since we were kids...and I mean real young. It has helped me reconnect with my family and also an increased appreciation for my husband and his positive attitude. There were difficult moments on the trip and he was definitely a calming force.

i changed my name. it was a milestone for me and my daughter, because it solidified our "family" status. but it was a giant fucking mess with nearly everyone in my biological family because they were butt hurt about me not consulting them about my decision. here's the thing: i'm 38 years old. i haven't lived with my parents since i was 17. that's 21 years of making my own decisions. at what point are you going to consider that i can be a grown up even if i never have a husband? clearly, i'm still frustrated about it. but, i did it anyway. because it wasn't about them. it was about me and my daughter and what we thought was the best thing for OUR family. despite the drama, i'm not sorry i did it. not even a little bit.

my grandma had a very bad fall. this inevitably caused me to move home to help care for her. which, in turn, got me closer to sarah and let our relationship grow. me being closer also helped er come visit and that is when we knew we had to see more of each other. also my grandma is fine now :3

This year, after my brother graduated, we all ended up back at home. It has been interesting, as all of us siblings are finally growing up and finding ourselves, so there has been some tension while that happens. I'm happy to be at home, still, but if I had the means and opportunity to have my own space, I think I would take it. (Too bad I don't make enough money for that.)

My mother has become increasing ill with Alzheimer's disease. This has caused my father to cry a lot. It has been tremendous work for my sister who lives close by. All of are sad she no longer knows who we are.

My granddaughter Millie lost her first tooth! She's six, growing up fast, and I'm across the country from her and my two children. I'm planning to do better with that this year. I cannot travel like other ordinary folks, as I use a wheelchair due to post-polio syndrome, but I can find a place out there. Separation from family is WRONG.

One of my sister's had her grandchild, my father and his wife had his second great-grandchild, my grandniece had her first cousin on our side of the family. I am noticing how differently my family does things than my husbands family and how inclusive it is. I feel like we've been a part of this on-going celebration of communication and photos and even though we are long distance, as my husband's family is, the connections are palpable. When our grandniece from his side of the family was born, we weren't told for 19 days because my sister-in-law didn't think it was her news to tell. My sister called in morning when her daughter went into labor. This explains so much that I didn't understand in the past thirty years. It's like cracking a secret code.

If there was ever a time I could 'fix' a part of my family, I would help my sister who at 70 is now guardian of a grandchild. I am hopeful that the grandchild will see, hear, feel, and understand that love is why we are here on Earth and grow with that love. The most major milestone is that of 8 siblings, we are all relatively healthy, given our ages.

Well with my new family- i.e. Jason's family too- we just had this really great wedding planning weekend. It was pretty relaxed. No drinking really. Everyone got along. Just easy. Which was nice. That everyone cared enough to try to get to know each other. We also had my brothers wedding where it was kinda nicely not about me. Now we are all figuring out this new thing- where Ryan and I are married and how the time is spent. and who goes where when. I will be sad to miss Thanksgiving for sure. This will be my year not going to Charlotte and instead going to Rockville.

My brothers moved away. It left me feeling sad that I no longer had the ability to see them easily a few times a month. Josh started PA school. It has made me nervous about how I am going to be able to handle PT school since I have always believed he is much smarter than I am. I got into the PT school that I had as my number 1. This has prompted the idea of buying a house.

The milestone in my mind is a future one- C and I are talking to a urologist next week about vasectomy reversal. This issue has pervaded our relationship in ways I'm only beginning to understand. We're both slow starters, in our own ways, so perhaps the milestone I'm looking for is the moment when C made the appointment. I'm apprehensive about pregnancy and parenting, as I think anyone should be, but I'm also hopeful about building a family together.

Well I'm shocked that my sister is pregnant with her 3rd kid in 2.5 years. I think it's absurd and I feel bad for the 2 already born. I also feel reeeeeally bad for my brother and sister in law who lost a baby this year. That was DEVASTATING!!! :'(( I can still cry about that. And I am downright humbled by how well my sister in law felt with it. I like that woman. Something shifted with her. I no longer think she's so lame and self centered. I think she's a little scared, and that's frustrating, but she tries her hardest, and she loves my brother so much.

My brother was deployed to Afgahnistan. It was hard on all of us. We're used to not being together all the time - both siblings have moved out of the house, but this was different. He was being sent to a war zone. I think it has made us all apprecatiate the time and conversations we do have together that much more. He's back in the States now, but it was a stressful time. It taught me to appreciate family and important causes more because the best way to handle stress is to turn it into something positive.

My daughter finished her fellowship which had been delayed by a serious car accident that had caused severe burns and multiple serious fractures. She had a prolonged recovery and had been forced to live at home during that time. She then went away for a year to another state, but recently moved back. It was a very happy homecoming, kind of a victory lap, new job, a huge success, but also a time of gratitude, and some bittersweet sadness for having to have sustained such trials. But now there is a newness to our relationship, and a chance to work on things together, changes around the house, and new family interactions. We are making new spaces for ourselves, and newness is always exciting.

Most remained more or less the same.

Nobody said that milestones had to be happy. This year, my uncle passed away. Back in the 80s he was in a skiing accident that left him as a respirator-dependent quadourapalegic. The doctors gave him a few months. He lived more than 30 years. It wasn't always a perfect life, but it was a life. I have such fond memories of Thanksgivings spent with my uncle in Vermont and I am glad that I was able to see him one last time. Effort he passed.

My sister had a baby on ivf and my best friend had a baby. It made me really evaluate what I want in life and it stimulated me to act.

I turned 40. I wasn't bothered about the number at all, but it's a turning point nonetheless, edging ever closer to that childless precipice, am I doing the right thing? I look older, and sometimes that bothers me, though it shouldn't. I want to work less, but feel that's not yet possible.

We had our first ER visit as a family. I'm glad it took so long, honestly, and I'm grateful we have health insurance and a hospital nearby. I do find myself being more anxious about the kids being up off the ground because of the visit. Hopefully I'll keep that mostly to myself to not have a longterm impact on the girls.

We moved back to the Bay (as I've said before). This has been super positive with Clara's school. She's enthusiastic about school, gets along great with friends and loves her teacher. There's no more epic battles to get ready in the morning (I hope I don't jinx that). The downside is living upstairs from a neighbor, especially when the kids are being crazy late at night. That has been a big source of anxiety for Jess.

I can't think of any milestones. youngest daughter did start school at Sowela and is working again. She seems very happy and satisfied which pleases the heck out of me. Husband announced on his 62nd birthday that he wanted to become Catholic again. There are a few things we need to do so this can happen. I am willing to jump through the hoops I need to jump through for that to happen.

FINALLY--I finished my doctorate, defended the dissertation, and am now know as "Dr. Mommy" by one adoring fan. I've been able to spend a little more mindful time with the kids. I have also figured out the mindfulness is not something that automatically return to life after graduate school (assuming I ever had it). And that, sadly, my house did not instantly clean itself. So I have much to work on, along with trying to launch a new(ish) career.

I got pregnant with baby #2 and am so thrilled and excited to grow our family. It's already so interesting to see how excited baby #1 is, and to notice how it's different the second time around.

No major milestone happened with my family this past year....my family's boring.....I wish they were more exciting and fun. I need new friends and new family members to call my own.

Just recently my Dad was re diagnosed with cancer. Either me or my brother will be the marrow donor and either way I am going to need to take a lot of time off of work. Somehow it seems easier this time than it was last time he was diagnosed. I don't know if it is because he beat it once so I am more hopefully that he can beat it again or that it is just that I am in a better place in my life. Regardless it has been a difficult thing to deal with alongside preparing for my wedding this week.

My baby sister graduated college and moved to Ireland for grad school. I went with her for the first week and it was a very mixed trip. We won't see her for at least a year due to the travel costs, which is the longest we will have ever gone without seeing each other. I am so proud of her, but also feel a loss. Asher looooves his Auntie Kayla so much and he will be twice his age the next time he sees her in person. It will be hard. Also, I think her finishing her Bachelor's degree, and seeing how many professional opportunities immediately opened up for her (with her almost-nothing work experience), really gave me that kick in the ass to go back to school myself.

One sister entering her senior year of college and the other taking her first college course (as a high schooler!). I'm very proud of them both. They have vastly different personalities, talent, perspectives etc. but even though they might take a different road, they both have grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years and it's very inspiring to see a "normal childhood"/young adult journey in comparison to my own.

My brother started living with my mom. Our relationship isn't the same. I think I prefer to live far from and love him from afar, instead of having so close. My patience has reached its point, and I'm very unhappy. I also dislike my step dad.

My family/framily - milestones - well, last oct we fought in court with a Hipaa violator, and the judge who allowed it. Over the following course (may remember all that effort to attempt to be ready?) we did get R divorced, I adopted, M super indebted, R indebted and then work messed up with her … sigh. Dad fades away, and I can't/don't get up to see him. Blood and I bonded over a spot at KeXP's wall - thanks Blood, Bob. Wen heads towards 'dead to me' with her trump support. Family - JD doubles down on 1 Trin, S&D are stuck in their spiral from what I can tell; Boo and her kin - seems it's all the same. Of course, give me an extra 3 weeks and family may be different. R's decent into not standing on her own kinda sucks. Changes to the kinder schedules aren't really milestones as much as rocks hurled at the fine folk who are trying to figure it all out. Oh - M won award for best Holiday display! That counts, right? Ah, wait - dad ended up in nursing home … when? Spring? Went down, C couldn't get him up - many little breaks, and home wasn't set up for rehab. The man is there. His brothers are falling, Don, Richard. Such tenuous importance due to the years/decades of inconsequential-ness of family … kinda fucked. How's all of this affected me? Stressed out for the local framily - when will the other shoe drop? When will the endurance falter, when will we stumble (er, early October it seems) - when will I get a call from sister, stating a fact, that may or may not change anything. S hurts, and I can't be there to help. Blood has wondrous challenges and adventures and weathers them? And that's me how? sigh //10.13.16::s:://

Noah had a successful summer internship, a job offer, and is set up for beginning adult life after this, his final year of college. Also just announced he is putting $5K aside for the car that he'll need. He seems to have landed in a very good place. I'm so happy for him that my heart aches.

I am really beginning to get a sense of the next generation. At home for holidays and Sassy's Batmitzvah, I truly felt that we are no longer the "kids". There are so many actual kids in the family now, we are the parents and our parents the grandparents. It's weird. It also really made me want to contribute to that next generation!

Remember last year when I was about to meet my dad's gf, and I said "My dad has a new girlfriend. I'm going to meet her on Sunday. I have the hope that my dad will be my dad again, and maybe, I'll finally have a family where I belong." Well guess what, she is the most amazing woman and I'm so glad she is with my dad. Both she and my dad are so nice and supportive of me, and we can talk about life and everything. They are my tribe, they are home! I do belong, and I'm happy for it!

Dan and I officially announced we want to be more involved with the ranch. As a result of that announcement, we've been seeing more involvement and more energy from my parents, and we have an essentially free house to live in. It feels good to have a direction to move in, and a potentially excellent start to our financial freedom. A free house?? It can save me $83,000 long term, and gets us out of being stuck in Coronation.

Last year, I reached a milestone that I never thought would arrive: I finally got my driver’s license. I took driver’s education classes and passed the learner’s permit test without any problems. My dad took me to the same shopping center parking lot that his father had taken him to first learn to drive. However, when my dad was first learning to drive, Massachusetts had the old Sunday “blue laws,” so he could practice driving in a spacious and empty parking lot. The first time I went behind the wheel, the cars in this parking lot were flying back and forth so quickly that I thought the stores in the shopping center were having a massive sale. Slowly, I gained enough confidence that I was ready to hit the road. Being a driver was so different from being a passenger because one has to be on constant alert. No more could I slink comfortably in the passenger seat with my headphones on, oblivious to the fast-paced action that one finds driving in the streets of Boston. The owner of the driving school I attended was also quite elderly. Occasionally, he would take the students out as an instructor. This instructor was so old, I imagined that his first car was a Ford Model T. Somehow, I learned enough to pass my driver’s license test. When the examiner asked me to parallel park, I felt the car had grown to three times its size. Fortunately, I did not hit the curb or the car I was maneuvering around. When the examiner said I passed the test, I was exhilarated. Suddenly, I sensed a new-found freedom. My mind drifted off as I imagined I was driving a sports car in a television commercial. The world appeared different to me in a way that I had not experienced before. I can’t wait to make my first cross-country trip.

Hmmmm, I'm not sure how to answer this. When I think of milestones, I first think of all the baby/toddler developmental milestones, since that's where we're at right now. So Lavender learning to walk and talk has obviously significantly impacted our family. I love the way she and Jude can play and interact, and it makes communication and going places so much easier!I'm excited for her to catch up to Jude both verbally and physically, but obviously by the time she can do what he's doing now, he'll be capable of so much more! Which I'm also excited about. Other milestones that would affect a family seem like career advancements (none here), buying a house (not going to happen for us any time soon), having another baby (nope, we're done), moving cities (not right now), or losing a parent (thankfully, we haven't and don't expect to anytime soon).

Becoming a Mom of twins has changed everything, and almost all for the better.

Major milestone as a daughter - hard to watch a parent decline. It is hard to be so far away. I am not able to help and participate in his life, in their lives, as much as I would like. Major milestone as a parent: so proud that my daughter is beginning her second year out of college in NYC with a great job that so far she is loving. What more could I want?

I don't know that we had a major milestone this year. I think that every day has been another experience of being grateful for each other.

Milestones... Well, we just hit our fourth year since my wife and I started talking on Facebook. It's her longest relationship, which is kind of a big deal. 3rd wedding anniversary is coming up in December, which is also nice. I mentioned elsewhere that I have a child due next year, and we're really hoping it's a girl; Either way, it's the final child for both my wife and myself.

My grandmother's passing affected me in a way I didn't expect and having to be there for my mother also showed me how resilient I can be and how resilient I want the people surrounding me to be.

I mean. The only one I can think of is all of my sisters (well, my one sister and my two sisters-in-law) getting pregnant at the same time. My sister had her baby in September, my older sil is due any day now, and my younger sil is due in February. I wouldn't say this "affects" me, other than the struggle to be the best aunt in the entire world. Picking out a onesie for the first niece in the family was probably the hardest thing I've ever done. What if my sister doesn't like this floral pattern? Will she ever put her child in it? Have I screwed up my first influence on this child's life? But it makes me feel sad, sometimes. I have three siblings and I'm the only single, childless one. And don't get me wrong, I like this life. Getting married sounds like a huge inconvenience to my habit of starfishing in the middle of my bed, playing video games until midnight, and hogging the bathroom in the morning. I would be the laziest, most selfish parent ever. Saying this makes me sound like a terrible person, but I feel like the thing that would actually make me a terrible person is having a kid because of these wistful moments when in reality, I have no desire to change my lifestyle at all. But every now and then we'll go on a family vacation or we'll get together for a family dinner, and it's all of them and then lil old me, all by myself. And I think it's just that it's lonely sometimes.

One major milestone was Michelle and me moving in together. It has brought so depth and surrender into our relationship, which feels like it is growing in a way it was not before. I feel so much more grounded and in tune with Michelle and, honestly, with the feminine because of it.

There were no major milestones in my family this year.

Family issues have been reasonabally quiet this year except for having Andrew move in with me so that he could lease condo he purchased in order to get caught up on past bills. This has meant that his three children, Levi, Sadie and Loralei comes to stay with us every other weekend. Some times this is hard with my Parkinsons but it is also a treat to get to know them better. Andrew has met a lovely lady that loves him and the children, so she spends time with them while he is working on weekends. She has 3 dogs, chickens, etc along with a son a little older then Levi--a great treat for all of them and a rest time for Sarah.

Nina became a Bat Mitzvah. I learned to save $16K.

My brother graduated college, in four years, less time than it took me, and he is doing OK, has a job, a house, good roommates, no debt. I am so proud of him for getting this far, and then he tends to ruin it by getting his wallet stolen during a house party, upsetting my parents. It's always something with him. We're adults, I'm in my 30s, he just turned 23 this month, and yet I still feel like I'm taking care of him, cleaning up his messes.

Closer to friends. family- virtually no contact at all. still hard- some guilt-inner distress about this. but the reward has been more peace of mind, stability, joy in my life.

The first thing I thought was my parents got divorced and my brother got engaged, but then I thought about how I was defining family. Yes those things have happened to the immediate family I was raised in, but as an adult I become/created a family of choice that has expanded and meant more to me this year than ever before. And I feel like we've made milestones outside the traditional and most of them just solidify that family isn't so one dimensional to me now.

Gabriel and I are now parents. We continuously lean on each other as we navigate these new identities. Our communication is stronger than it's been, and I feel more certain than ever that I chose the best life partner I could have.

My father was diagnosed with prostate cancer. At first I was upset, then I decided there was no point in thinking about it. I don't think about it much. He says he's ok now. I'm not sure that's true. I know it makes him happy if I ring him and ask him about it. I know he's still both physically and mentally unwell. It has made me pay more attention with him, spend more time with him, be a little more patient with both my parents. But still, most of the time I just refuse to think about it.

My uncle was diagnosed w/ a form of bone cancer that was fairly far along. I have never had a close relationship with him, and he has been a difficult & bellicose man for the almost 20 years I've known him -- but confronting his mortality brought out a gentler, more thoughtful, and even more generous spirit than I'd seen. And it reminded me how important it is to be kind, loving, and compassionate even with people whom that's not as easy with. Seeing my grampa grow more frail and delicate as he approaches 97 brought this home too.

My dad finally started taking better care of his health. After a scary few years, he seems to be on the mend.

My boyfriend was diagnosed with diabetes this year. He's only 27 and the thought of him being sick in any way shape or form has shown me that life is so precious and far too short to not show people in your life that you love them. We are going to embark on the journey of changing our lifestyles together and it's already proving to be difficult. It has also shown me how important it is to take care of yourself. After seeing my dad diagnosed with it last year, and not changing the way I eat or take care of myself, this has been a real wake-up call.

My sweetie got an electric wheelchair! My sweetie got an electric wheelchair! My sweetie got an electric wheelchair! And it saved our non-marriage. He no longer feels resentful about his dependance (which often got focused on me), I ditto, and we no longer fight about whether or not I am being taken advantage of as a result. It's awesome! My sweetie got an electric wheelchair!

This year felt relatively quiet for my immediate family. For the extended family, it was a little busier. Overall, I'm glad I've been able to reconnect with those I wasn't as close with. I spent 3 days with my grandmother. Although by the end of it I was ready to go home, I had a lot of sympathy for Grandma Sally. She had to embrace total independence out of circumstance and has created a routine that makes her happy. She's found friends, activities, and past times that keep her busy - things I'm still learning how to find.

Both of my parents lost their eldest siblings this past year. This was not necessarily a "milestone" but one of those moments where mortality shows its ugly face and we are reminded that life is short. Fortunately, both family members led a wonderful life but grief and death are never easy to deal with, and longevity is never a guarantee. What decisions are we making today to ensure we are staying mentally, physically, and spiritually healthy? What are we doing to ensure time with our loved ones is spent cherishing each others company as opposed to just "spending time together" or worse- arguing!

My life has completely changed with the birth of our son. He is an amazing little boy who is generally happy. We are no longer a couple, we are now a family, and our outlook has changed to be one of putting him first instead of ourselves.

My son's bar mitzvah has forced me to transform as a parent; an increasingly independent person, requiring me to step back and change how I parent.

I typed up a loooong answer here, and it got lost. Bottom line -- moving Mom and Dad to assisted living has been gut-wrenching. Hoping for better days ahead.

My son started college. The process was exciting and difficult. It was not my decision, and I insisted that he make the decision. He hesitated, fearful of making a wrong decision, which allowed me to understand that my decisions do not always have to be life changing - and that there is usually always an opportunity to correct and improve an incorrect choice.

I have been able to relax, just a tiny bit, but it is exceedingly difficult to not fret over everything. Worrying to me is a way of feeling in control, something I've had to be all my adult life. Because if not me, who?

No real milestones except my dad turning 75! We lost our dog Ash Moon on Sept. 14th. She was the last animal (indoors) of our life before Jeff started doing everything! That was devastating. She was such a wonderful dog and friend to us all! I won't be getting over her for a long time

Seeing my sons as supportive Men in my cancer treatment

I realized I can take space from my family and that I can choose to not allow them to overstep my boundaries, and they will still love me. We get along really well now.

I got pregnant and gave birth to my baby boy. We tried and had two miscarriages and then I finally got pregnant and thought holy shit what have I done. Especially when my husband got busy with work. I was afraid I would be on my own again to care for a baby. But he has really really helped me out this time. Through pregnancy and with the little guy. I am so grateful. I am relinquishing control to him and in regards to breastfeeding so I feel freer even with the responsibility of having a baby to care for.

Ari moved to SF from LA...difficult and challenging as he's have a hard time adjusting...and relies on us a lot...I want him to be stronger and more self reliant...and more confident...I hope this will happen over time.

My son completed his first year at Diablo Valley College with a GPA of 2.88. He needs to work harder to increase his GPA to at least 3.0.

The major milestone was going to Europe for the wedding of my youngest brother and also spending time with my sister inlaws family in Switzerland. It was the first time we have travelled as a family for a long time but it was really nice to conect with family and psend time with family. It affected me because I realised how important maintaining and building links with family are particularly now that our children are moving out and we need to rekindle links and friendships. I want to focus on making more time for that

Florence was born and it's been a highlight of the year for us all. It's bought us closer and, I think, more grateful for what we have. It's also made me, not surprisingly but at strange times, more acutely homesick than ever before. It's made me grapple with the guilt of wanting to be home so badly but not quite being ready to be back there for good.

My nephew was born just over a year ago. I think this has brought our family closer together. It has also made me reconsider whether I might want kids someday.

June Ann passed away last Christmas. To say that I, and the other kids (including Shannon) had a complicated and not always positive relationship with June Ann would be an understatement. But in the end, as she was going through treatment, then stopping treatment, all that falls to the wayside. It's just a person in front of you, one that you love even if you don't always like them, who is dying. Who's days will be ending. I'm glad that Dad had her in his life, and had so much happiness with her. I'm glad that he was able to care for her and had time at the end. I'm glad that there was not searing pain. I'm glad that he loved her fully. I'm glad that he has someone new in his life now, so that he is not lonely.

Lee and I Kon-Mari-ed our apartment this year. It's a method of tidying where you hold every item you own and ask yourself if it sparks joy and if not you thank it for its service and give it away. It helps hone a person's sense of what brings them joy more generally. I found it very cleansing and therapeutic. I want my home to be container for the items that spark joy for me. I want my home to be spartan, clean, functional, filled with laughter, love, music, conservation, and friends, but not stuff.

My grandmother died not long into 5776. Combined with everything else, it has pretty much killed my father. I don't believe anymore. I still enjoy the traditions, for the most part, but I'm restless and don't connect anymore.

My middle brother got married, got a new car, got a house, my baby brother got into med-school. I don't know... I didn't want to be involved in family events... I still don't.

Owen got a job at Yale and moved to New Haven. This hasn't affected me much, to be honest, but I definitely want to spend some time with OBNC before (hopefully) going to Australia.

I'm the milestone. Looking into the future to the holidays, I don't know yet. Ask me in a year. haha

Lauren: school. And reading And potty and sunging. Abd big bed. She is a little girl not a baby. I am so proud of her and love who she is becoming.

My Aunt Pat passed away this May. Even though I knew it was coming, it tore away the scabs around the loss of my own mother. It is one more woman of an generation above me who is gone, one less place to look for for comfort. On the other hand it has brought me closer to my cousin, which is a good thing and would make both of our mothers proud.

My daughter started kindergarten, and my son moved to a new daycare along with her. It's been an adjustment, and my wife and I can't believe the time has gone so fast. But everyone's happier, and it's been amazing to watch them both thrive.

KT was accepted to graduate school and has successfully navigated a move to Boston. I'm so proud of her for jumping in head-first and thriving. And I'm proud of us for helping her to complete her application. Our relationship with her has materially changed as a result of this process. We're closer than I thought we would be able to be in decades.

My brother got married again last year. My parents and came and stayed with me for the first time for more than a month in Bangalore. They helped me buy my apartment and also repair it. They worked really hard and selflessly round the clock for days at end to fix my place while I was at work. None of these has affected me much, except a growing feeling of despair that I've been living a selfish life 39 years without giving back anything to my parents. I wish I can change this in this year.

My grandparents moved from their house of 40 years to a condo about three minutes down the road. I spent a lot of time at that house, as did my mother and, clearly, my grandparents, so it was sad to see them move on from that place. And yet, I was so proud of my grandparents for making that decision: their house was not only too big for their needs, but also too big for them to handle. They’d installed a stair-climber a few years ago, but even with that the house was still cumbersome. Now they have a one-story house with only a few rooms. I was so proud of them for their decision to move. My grandparents, especially Grandma, are a lot more tied to physical possessions than I am or my parents are. So, to see them, surrounded by all of the memories they’d made in that house and the things they accumulated, agree on the need to downsize so as to prevent a hell of a lot of future trouble when one of them falls or something like that, that was truly inspiring. It reminded me of the great stock I come from in my family—I was born with a good head on my shoulders.