nyankoframe: (neko-Shinku)
[personal profile] nyankoframe
I haven't really made any entries ("serious" or otherwise) in a while, and it's a new year, so I figured writing about the highs and lows of 2009 would be a good way to start off the new year.

Things that went well in 2009
- I got a promotion and a title change. While getting promoted means more work and increased demands on my time, it does mean a pay rise (especially since merit/COLA increases are frozen) and more visibility towards other people and teams, both within my group and elsewhere in the company. The bonus was also a welcome benefit.
- I helped work on making Windows 7 more stable and provide a better experience than Vista and XP when it comes to installing (and uninstalling) updates. It might not sound like a big deal, but Microsoft takes update failures (both while downloading or while installing) seriously and I actually investigate these failures to figure out what's going on. In some cases we make changes to improve the update user experience or increase reliability, and in other cases we release tools to help users fix their computers.
- I'm working on accepting my depression and making the changes that I need to enjoy life more and not be as worried over certain things. I've been seeing a therapist for some time now and 2009 was, in my opinion, the first year that I really started making progress in cognitive therapy. Part of managing the depression is also taking anti-depressants, which was something I initially opposed vehemently (almost to the point of not wanting to see my therapist any more). But on the whole, it's helped a lot more than it's affected me, and I've actually cut my dosage in half with a goal of reducing it further (to 5 mg) in 6 months' time and then evaluating whether I can get off it by the end of the year.
- I performed with an orchestra for the first time ever in December :-) While it didn't always go smoothly (and I was really nervous at first), it was a good experience and the conductor was quite understanding of my predicament (I performed with pretty much 1 rehearsal with the orchestra).
- I went to HeroCon and met [livejournal.com profile] samurai_ko again! This year she had several trays of brownies including creme de menthe, which I unfortunately missed out on. I also met several CoH players such as [livejournal.com profile] syrusb, [livejournal.com profile] tanyad and [livejournal.com profile] saintnicster, among other people. The panels were a lot of fun and I feel optimistic about City's future. I'm hoping I can go again this year :D

Things that didn't go so well
- I've had some health issues off and on throughout the year, and am overdue for a physical. I don't really want to hear what I should do but I know I have to do it at some point.
- The car gave me quite a bit of trouble, particularly in October when I had to replace the engine (!!) which set me back a large amount. I'm really hoping that it doesn't give me any problems this year.
- I tried speed dating several times, as well as messaging people on OKCupid, and there haven't been any immediate sparks, though some people have seemed promsing. I won't lie and say that it doesn't hurt a little to feel lonely and wondering what I'm doing wrong, but I think compared to three (or even two) years ago, I'm handling it much better - I don't take the fact that other people have relationships as personally as I used to (which led to several nasty arguments and a friendship ending), but it's still something that will take a while to fully be at peace with. This year will be a bit of a challenge since quite a few friends of mine are getting married and the pressure for me to be in a relationship is mounting, but I don't want to rush things and end up with a mess.
- Family issues last year were particularly bad. I'm not going to go into details in a public post, but I'm really glad that I left home when I did, if not sooner.
- I bought (or gave) friends some items because I thought they would appreciate it or it would be useful, but in a lot of cases there was some confusion about the intent and things didn't always work out so well. Appropriate (i.e. not overly extravagant) gift-giving is something I'll have to work on.

Phew... that was quite a lot of thoughts! In no particular order, here's what I'm looking forward to in 2010:
- I'm going to take part in the Old-Time Piano Playing Contest in Peoria, IL during the Memorial Day weekend! Registration hasn't opened yet, but I fully intend to submit my entry form and get my period costume ready. I've gotten some very helpful advice from [livejournal.com profile] saraphina_marie, who happens to be a costume designer and has a degree in it! She's also a great author, by the way. :-)
- Spending more time being happy. I've spent so much time over the last few years (particularly when I was at home) trying to please other people that I've forgotten what it's like to please myself without getting material goods (though having a new Zune HD as a New Year's present to myself certainly doesn't hurt!)
- Re-discovering my social skills through karaoke and other activities. I bravely sang Lady Gaga's "Poker Face" at karaoke last week, which was certainly unexpected, but I didn't feel any shame in doing so. It's also a good way of getting to know new people, and staying in touch with friends.

I hope everyone's year will be a good one! Right now though, Lillian is kneading my bedsheet, so I think that's a signal that I should go to sleep. :)
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