2017 in Review

Hello and Happy New Year!

I know I’ve been writing a lot lately about how fast time is going by, but I had a “get off my lawn!” moment this morning when I realized it’s freaking 2018. U wot m8? How is it this far into the future already? I can still clearly remember having trouble writing “1996” at the top of my papers in middle school when a new year started. This year will be 20 years since I started high school. How did I get so old??

Let’s look back at last year before I start screaming into the void, yeah?

2017 Goals Recap

I listed five goals/things to focus on in my post from last year. They weren’t all the sorts of things I could just do and check off, but let’s see how things went:

1) Get this baby out safely and make his little world as cozy, safe, and full of love as possible.

Okay, get the baby out safely – check! He took us by surprise, arriving 3 weeks early and only 4 days after I learned he was breech. That didn’t leave much time for me to try all the old wives’ tales, so my efforts to flip him the right way ’round were unsuccessful:


Two days before the Bairn arrived, I was hanging upside-down(ish) off the couch (pictured), putting ice packs on his head, and playing his favorite songs down lower, where I wanted his head to be. No dice.

His stubborn breechiness meant a c-section after I realized I was in labor. Even though his arrival wasn’t at all how I’d imagined it, he got here safely, and I like to think we’ve made his life cozy and full of love since that day.

2) As soon as I get the OK from my midwife, jump back on the running wagon. Iโ€™ve been missing running like crazy, and the new jogging stroller is all assembled and ready to go!

Hmm, yes. The running wagon. I’ve hopped on a few times this year, but couldn’t manage to stay on for too long. More on that below. Also, it’s fun to look back and smile fondly at pre-baby Dana who was so excited to run with the jogging stroller, not knowing that the bairn’s little neck muscles wouldn’t be strong enough for that kind of malarky until much later! (Once his neck could actually support his head, he was still such a little peanut that he never really looked fully comfortable in the jogger. I’m now hoping to take him on an inaugural run once the snow melts and it warms up a bit.)

3) Related to above, Iโ€™m hoping to be fit enough to run the Worcester Firefighters race in June. Iโ€™d like to keep that streak going!

Hehehehe, oh pre-baby me. Such optimism! To be fair, it seemed like a perfectly reasonable goal. What I didn’t know is how tricky it can be to plan things like this when there are bairns involved (see this post), or that it would be unreasonably hot that particular day. My streak got cut shorter than I would have liked, but that’s okay. I can always start another one!

4) Read. Read for fun, read to learn, read fiction, read non-fiction, read newspapers. Try to balance staying informed with staying sane.

I read more post-bairn than I thought I would! Actual, physical books didn’t happen too often, but my mother-in-law gave me a Kindle, and that bad boy saw me through SO many naptimes back when the bairn would only sleep on me. (Ahh, the good old days when he would take multiple 3-hour naps a day and I could sit and relax and plow through books like no one’s business.) I read fiction, I read non-fiction, I read (online) newspapers. I read for fun, I read to learn, I read to get woke. I even joined a social justice book club at my local library, which is pretty awesome. I hope I can keep this all up in 2018!

As for balancing staying informed with staying sane… that one was a little tougher. I quit Twitter, which helped a little, but that just turned down the flow of the hose a little. I’m still working on figuring this one out.

5) Do good, no matter how small, whenever and wherever I can.

This one is hard to quantify, but I can say that I did my best. I fell short sometimes, but it’s still a constant desire to do good.

My 2016 in Numbers (Running)

Total miles: 15.84 (down from ~106.84 in 2016… hey, 15 miles is better than no miles!)

Races completed: 0 (down from 8 in 2016)

States raced in: 0 (down from 3 in 2016)

MA towns raced in: 0 (down from 3 in 2016)

Countries raced in: 0 (down from 2 in 2016)

PRs beaten: none

DNSs: 1 (Kick in 4 Kids, read about it here)

Firsts and Milestones (Running)

Not much to report this year, as you probably figured out from the stats up there. However, I did enter my running club’s marathon lottery for the first time, and thankfully I was unsuccessful!

Firsts and Milestones (Personal)

  • I had a baby! That was probably the biggest first and milestone this year.
  • I traveled to Florida for the first time, if you don’t count the time I had a layover in the Miami airport.
  • …I’m sure there were more, but honestly the mombrain has taken over and I can barely remember things these days. I could tell you all about the Bairn’s milestones, but mine? ๐Ÿค”

Last year I ended my post a bit bleakly, as I was feeling bleak about the state of the world I was about to bring a child into. I still feel pretty bleak, to be honest, but the constant tiredness and mombrain allow me to switch my brain off sometimes and just focus on the task at hand. So that’s handy. It all also makes me determined to do my best to raise a good man, and a good human.

In terms of short-term goals, here are mine for 2018:

  1. Get the Bairn registered at the gym so he can hang at their daycare while I work out. 
  2. I’m registered for a half marathon in April; while I ran a half in 2016 without properly training, I’d like to NOT make that a habit. So, I’d like to train for this race. 
  3. Continue reading. Read more books by People of Color and from backgrounds not like mine. Continue reading to the Bairn as often as he’ll let me. 
  4. Actually use the jogging stroller for jogging!
  5. Get out and about with the Bairn more. I was scared to drive with him for quite a while, and also scared to mess with his fragile nap schedule. But Drew and I realized we didn’t do a whole lot with him in his first year. His grandparents got him memberships to the aquarium and Children’s Museum, so putting those to good use will be a start!

How was your 2017?

What are you looking forward to in 2018?


4 thoughts on “2017 in Review

  1. I was scared to go out with my first daughter – hated having to drive anywhere with her. Eventually I got over it!!! It was hard getting back to running post baby – life just happens. The good news is running will always be there and that jogging stroller is going to be AWESOME!

    • I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who was scared to drive with a new baby! ๐Ÿ™‚ And you’re right – running will always be there! I’m thankful for that. I can’t wait to give the jogger a spin!

  2. Hey – getting a new life safely into the world is a MAJOR accomplishment! Heck, it was life-altering and exhausting even for me and I wasn’t even the one carrying the baby! :D. I am not sure I knew it was c-section, but then again maybe I did?!? Our younger son was breech and a c-section, but it was a scheduled one.

    We took our first son out pretty early, to visit family (no one was close by even then, much worse now), and at 6 weeks I had him up in Nashua for Christmas pictures :). Memories …

    As for the running – oh well, you got over-zealous, no biggie – reality is like that, there are years ahead to do more running, but you cannot relive the first year of your child’s life! As my kids are both in college I definitely look back, we love looking back at the old stuff – even if the kids don’t. TimeHop app is awesome – we’ve had digital cameras for ages, and digitized many earlier pics, so we’ll regularly get 17 years of memories!

    As for worrying about the world … yeah, pretty awful. When the kids were young and Obama was elected I thought we had hope – I thought that the instant racist backlash was the last rising of a dying movement … but now that movement is in charge of all three branches of government as well as many state and local governments. And because our kids are adults, all we can do is discuss it and agree ‘well … this is not good’ and worry about the future. Crap.

    Oh well – happy new year to you and your family and all hopes for an amazing 2018,Dana!

    • Thanks Mike ๐Ÿ™‚ Babies are life-altering for all involved, for sure! I probably would have ended up with a scheduled c-section thanks to my bairn’s breechiness, but he was too impatient to wait around for that ๐Ÿ˜‰ We like to say that the bairn came early so that he could be born while Obama was still president… he just squeaked in under the wire!

      Happy 2018 to you and your family as well!

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