This decade has sucked so hard for me, when I tell you all the ways, it’s going to sound pretty horrible.


My family had to close our small business which meant that we were all out of work. Me, my husband, my sister, my Mom, even my Grandpa. My sister and I tried to start a new business, an art studio. That tanked too. My dad Bob was diagnosed with lung cancer. He went through the treatment successfully but was seriously injured by medical malpractice that put him on oxygen 24/7 and which shortened his life. He passed away in 2015. My Grandpa died the following year. My husband was injured at his job due to workplace negligence and now he suffers chronic pain in his dominant hand. I’ve always been an anxious person, but in the past decade, my anxiety grew out of control. I had several major panic attacks. I now have agoraphobia and can’t drive so I’m pretty much stuck at home a lot. Our pet tortoise was stolen from our back yard, a raccoon killed my chickens and then our dog. Our surviving dog went into a deep depression after losing her sister and passed away this January. I could go on but I think you get the idea.


In spite of all of that and perhaps even because of it, I’m grateful. And hopeful. And so many awesome things have happened this decade.¬† We discovered a true love of camping and have taken many incredible trips to a lot of gorgeous State and National Parks. We’ve been to so many beautiful places and have an abundance of precious memories from our trips. Greg began volunteering with the Sierra Club and found his passion, getting kids involved in nature and conservancy. I decided to be an artist. I didn’t realize that was a thing you could just decide to be. I guess I thought you were born an artist or went to school to become one but no, I figured out that you could be an artist simply by making art and living an artful life. I’ve met so many people and done so many things this decade that I never dreamed possible. I never thought I’d ever travel alone, but I’ve done it many times in the past ten years. It’s been a real journey of educating myself, learning to bead and paint, to understand self-care, to plan amazing camping trips, to be grateful every day and to find joy in just being alive.


This decade has been rough but I got through it by reframing the bad stuff into challenges to conquer. Let’s all rise to our challenges and make the next decade the best one yet!