Christmas this year was one of the best I can remember. Most of my family was getting along, the things I had been dreading never happened, I got a lot of really nice gifts and I feel only slightly bad that I didn't buy anyone anything in return. I wanted a lot of things this year, I never write down the things I want but I think about them frequently. Getting a new cell phone or a new car won't really change life but I like to pretend that material things will improve how I perceive things since that's so much easier than actualizing myself. Yesterday I had to be to work early. Lately I've been thinking I need a new job but applying for new jobs is scary to me. My sister has a theory that since my parents rarely gave us children approval and even our best wasn't good enough me and my siblings are afraid to try new things even though the situation we're in may be less than ideal.

My sister is such an interesting person to talk to, I had a good time talking to her and now that I'm older I really appreciate having sisters to talk to about whatever life hands me. For a long time, maybe for as long as I can remember I have not liked the person I am. Some of the things I don't like about myself are within my power to change, I'd like to think that I've been taking some small steps to work on improving those areas. I've made a mental list and I could share it with you but one of the things I'm trying to work on is being less free with my personal information and who has what kind of access to it. This was prompted in part by things other people have shared with me and partially by an article about Facebook in a magazine that was delivered to my house.

Not long ago someone asked why I don't write as much as I used to. I still write but very little of it makes it out of my scratch pads or Word documents. Every day characters flit through my head at work or in the car. I think about situations to put my characters into and how they would handle them. My sister told me that one of my characters was dark and complicated. She told me I wanted to fix someone and that this character was a way for me to do that. I don't necessarily agree with that analysis but what I do like is getting feedback about things that I've written. To me this is one of the great strenths of E2 because feedback from people who read my writeups has been invaluable.

So much has changed recently. I wish I had been better about cataloguing the events and I can't change the past but I have some limited power over the future. My children are growing up and changing from little girls into bigger ones. My oldest daughter cut herself the other day. She has a two inch cut that runs along the top of her arm, self-inflicted by a razor that I left lying in the shower. After seeing that I spent a lot of time thinking about people who cut themselves and why they do it. I thought about talking to her about it but I'm really not sure what I should say or if addressing the subject is perhaps giving too much attention to an incident that was most likely caused by normal childhood curiosity.

Today I am thankful for all the family I visited the other day. My aunt and uncle now own a condo down in Florida. Already I am planning a trip there and whether or not the trip materializes I'll have fun thinking about what could be. I spend a lot of time thinking about the way I want things to be. At work I'm usually working on a writeup that will most likely never get written. I don't think this interferes with my ability to do my job and to do it well but it is something that worries me periodically. I have a secret fantasy and that too will most likely not come to be but I think about it, wish for it and want very badly for it to happen. Looking back 2009 was a good year. I changed and I believe most of that was for the better. Hopefully some of the changes I've made will stick, I know they will if only I am persistant.

A quick update on the food allergy front: After several reactions in a row I think I may be allergic to wheat. Since I've gone to a gluten free diet I've felt better, had more energy and I even lost a couple pounds. One of my sisters does not believe that I have a wheat allergy. Quite possibly she is right although the last three reactions I've had have been after consuming some sort of wheat product. It could be that I have an allergy to something else but I feel so much better living the gluten free lifestyle that even if a physician tells me wheat is okay for me to eat I am not going back to it. It has taken some fine tuning (I never realized how many foods had wheat derivatives) and there are a few foods I miss but the memory of how sick I was keeps my hand for reaching for what I now think of as forbidden fruit.

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