2013 has sucked so far. Due to a bout of illness, we were unable to go out last night, something that LC took particularly hard - she had gone to some lengths to look nice, only for me to be unable to go.
2012, like 2011 before it, was a very mixed year. It had probably the single best day of my life, but it has also featured some really difficult times. My overall impression was that it was a good year, but that the next year really needs to be better in some key respects.
My Year in... Work
2012 was a bad year in work. I got a bad performance review, and deservedly so, in the first part of the year. This was due largely to extreme tiredness, coupled with the stress of preparing for the wedding.
The first several months after returning from honeymoon were considerably better, but again I went too long before taking a break. Then, when I did take that break, it was not at all restful. The last few weeks before Christmas were something of an ordeal. And, unfortunately, this break has again not been very restful.
My determination for the new year is to focus more on what needs to be done, but perhaps more importantly to insist on taking regular breaks, and getting enough rest. But, more important than that...
My Year in... Health
2012 was a pretty bad year here, too. I've been suffering some severe digestive problems for quite some time. In fact, in February we actually made a trip to the hospital for an out-of-hours appointment because I feared my heart might be in trouble. That turned out to be a false alarm, but shows the seriousness of the complaint.
It actually cleared up in the middle of the year, mostly, but has been back with a vengeance this winter. I visited the doctor two weeks ago, and he thought it was a consequence of the drugs I've been taking for my neck, but the proposed fix seems not to have had the desired effect.
As things stand, I don't know what is at the root of the problem. However, it's obviously the #1 priority for the next little while to get to the bottom of it, and to get it sorted. That's pretty much key to the entire year, because nothing else can really be done without.
My Year in... Gaming
2012 was a very good year for gaming, albeit not the blockbuster that was 2011. The RPG Meetup moved to a new site once again, and continues to go well. We seem to be at about the same numbers as last year, with the same range of games on the go.
This year saw me return to "The Eberron Code", which remains one of my "big four" of especially satisfying campaigns. It should come to a close around May this year.
I also ran two one-off games. The first was a "Str Wars Saga Edition" game entitled "Through a Glass Darkly", which stands as one of my best-ever games. The second was a "Black Crusade" one-shot that... didn't go so well. I've talked about that at some lengthon my other blog, so won't dwell on it here.
I played very little in 2012, managine (I think) a solitary session of "Dark Sun". It was a good game, but I do hope to play more in 2013.
One final note of sadness: 2012 saw the final end of my Saturday Game group. We never quite managed to get together before the wedding, and at that point I let them know that I was leaving - I just couldn't commit every Saturday to a game that never quite happened. A shame, but it really was time.
In 2012, in addition to finishing off "The Eberron Code", I hope to start a new campaign, "Imperial Fist" in SWSE, and to run a handful of one-shots. I also hope to play a little more than in 2012. Perhaps more importantly, I hope to cut down on cancellations - 2012 saw both a "Mutants & Masterminds" game and the Christmas Game being cancelled, which I hope not to repeat.
My Year in... Band
2012 was a bad year for the band. We had a series of bad results, and then the pipe major left in acrimonious circumstances. This led to the one highlight of my year in the band: I got to lead them out for a single, solitary competition in Ireland.
However, this was quickly followed by another blow. I had hoped to defer the appointment of a new permanent PM until the AGM, and to lead the band out myself to the Worlds' and at Cowal. However, this was not to be - our lead drummer insisted on an election, and I lost narrowly.
That was a bitter, bitter blow, although it is probably worth noting that the guy in charge would have been my choice for permanent PM. Additionally, by that point I had decided to leave - I merely wanted to see out the rest of the season and to take an opportunity that I wouldn't have again.
So, at the AGM I left the band... mostly. As it happened, I remain in charge of the website, and remain as the Chairperson of the Committee. I'll almost certainly see that out for the year now, since it's actually not too bad.
However... I am finding that I miss playing quite a lot. As feared, I have barely picked up my pipes since leaving the band, and don't really want to lose it. Given that this band remains the "best fit" band for me in the area, I may consider rejoining for the 2014 season. We'll see how I feel in a few months.
My Year in... Resultions
I didn't really set any goals at the start of 2012. However, I did meet the target I later set of reading 52 books, so that's something. I've set some more appropriate goals for 2012.
My Year in... Travel
2012 saw me taking three trips. The second of these was the band's annual trip to Ireland, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
The other major trip was the honeymoon, to Mexico in April. It was awesome, entirely great from start to finish. It was hot, but not too hot, we went swimming with dolphins, and exploring in Chichen Itza, and snorkelling in the most amazing biosphere, and clubbing in... okay, that wasn't so good. Plus, I was able to take LC for a romantic meal overlooking the sea, complete with a totally unexpected birthday cake. Basically, it was the best holiday ever.
The final trip, and one that is important to note, was down to England to enjoy the wedding of James and Zo, cousins of mine (well, a cousin and a cousin-in-law, if you want to be picky). This was, of course, another great family occasion, and a good opportunity to actually speak to people - something we ironically didn't get much chance to do at our own wedding!
My Year in... Faith
2012 was a somewhat boring year in terms of faith. We remained somewhat involved at the church, and even attended one of the "small groups"... but that's not really faith; that's just doing stuff.
LC and I also spent some weeks trying to find a local church in Falkirk to attend. However, this proved rather disheartening, as we didn't really feel at home in any of the churches we visited. I'm not sure whether we'll bother resuming the search in 2013 - it may or may not be worthwhile.
So, 2012 was a little boring. It remains to be seen what 2013 will bring.
My Year in... Love
Awesome. That is all.
The wedding in April in many ways was the culmination of a long, long journey, and the start of another. It was the best day of the year, and simply could not have gone any better. There's a much longer post about this, so I won't say any more here.
Things since the wedding have had their inevitable ups and downs. There have been occasions when I have been less than tactful, and there have been times when we just hven't stopped laughing (usually at each other).
The first couple of months were almost certainly more difficult for LC than for me - I was extremely busy and she was not yet working or started her course. This meant that things had to proceed on my schedule, and it meant that she had lots of time to fill with not much to do.
Conversely, I've found the last few months to be something of a challenge. Teacher Training, it seems, is absurdly tough. Seriously - a few years ago I did an MSc in addition to working full-time, in addition to being heavily involved in a BB company and two bands, and in addition to running a weekly RPG campaign... and while I was doing all that, I was less busy than LC has been these last months. That shouldn't be read as a complaint against LC (though I fear she wmay do exactly that), merely a statement of fact.
For 2013, there are some things that we'll need to do a bit differently. In particular, it will be important to make more time for each other, and to stop living on my schedule or on her schedule, but rather blocking our time out together. I think we also need to make some time to get away for a while, alone, together - both Falkirk and the flat are very nice, and we enjoy spending time with both our families, and such... but it can get to be rather oppressive after some months of it. And the prospect of another 12 months like the one we've just had...
My Year... Overall
As I said, 2012 was a mixed year. The high points were very, very high. The low points, though not quite so correspondingly low, did seem to drag on for most of the year. On balance, it has been a good year... but we need the bulk of 2013 to be better than the bleaker parts of 2012.
And so, that's where we are, I think.