It is the last evening of 2013, and I’m sitting here in our apartment in Jakarta waiting for the husband to put dinner on. He’s been cooking the holiday meals, in part, I think, because he usually doesn’t have the time, so the holidays and the occasional weekend are the only time he gets.
It’s been quite an eventful year, following in a sequence of eventful, stressful years. This year was a bit of a mixed bag:
• At the turn of the year, B and I were talking about moving to Jakarta for his work, and spent the next four months in an agony of tension as to if, and if so, when, we’d move.
• My sister-in-law was diagnosed with late-stage uterine cancer.
• My sister developed post-natal depression.
• We finally moved to Jakarta in late May, after much stressing over getting our animals here, and making arrangements for our apartment back in Singapore.
• I had a bit of a health scare when my gynaecologist found something that shouldn’t be there.
On the other hand:
• I discovered aerial silks and hoop, and spent a good chunk of time on pole before we moved.
• My niece was born, and lit up the lives of everyone around her.
• We visited friends in Perth, and I generally flew around a fair bit either on vacation or making trips back home to visit.
• I had surgery, that thing that shouldn’t have been there was biopsied and, as far as we know right now, is not a problem.
• I met up with Gabs in Singapore and we had a fab time together.
• I started horse riding lessons! I’m not very good yet, but I have fun.
• B and I celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary with a lovely trip to Bali.
• I took an AntiGravity Fundamentals training course, and am in the process of getting certified as a Level 1 instructor.
And aside from all that, we’ve had quite a bit of good food and wine, and I’ve had the luxury of spadefuls of time in which to go to yoga class and think and make things.
I can’t sit here and ponder too long, because dinner will be on the table soon. But I did want to, in the spirit of giving thanks for blessings received and opening my heart to new blessings in 2014, make a quick list of the things I’m grateful for in Jakarta.
- I have access to fun activities here that would have been much more expensive and harder to get to back home—riding, regular AntiGravity Fitness classes.
- Our apartment here is larger than ours back home, and the cat and the rabbit have both been reaping the benefits of that. Harry, in particular, loves the extra space to run around and explore and make mad leaps. And we have room for a Christmas tree!
- We’ve had fireworks marking every major holiday we’ve spent here in Jakarta. It makes holidays feel remarkably festive. And yes, the New Year’s Eve fireworks started about 15 minutes ago, and are still going. Noisemakers and party horns have just kicked in too.
- We’ve met new people who have been open with their lives and time. B and I are both fairly introverted and solitary by disposition (though he’s far more so than I am). And as you get older, your life can contract if you’re not careful. Moving here has forced us to expand, and I’m grateful for that.
- Speaking of expansion, moving has also gently expanded my comfort zone. Learning to communicate in a new language, learning where to buy groceries and pay bills in a new city, learning to adapt to a new rhythm, and learning new ways to cook and make things… all these things have kept me engaged and alive. I’ve learned anew that I am much more resourceful and resilient than my first instinct. I fight the challenge and I moan and complain about it, but in reflection, I am grateful for it, because I think that in the end I will be a better person for it.
While I want to fix the formatting and add more photos, the husband’s getting hungry. Roll on, 2014, and may you be better than 2013—more good stuff, less bad stuff, okay? Happy New Year!