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The year 2009 was an interesting year for me. I say “interesting” in a positive way, though I also  want it to be a thought-provoking “interesting”.

I  grew and changed exponentially that year. Change is constant, and I realize that people change a lot every year, but 2009 was simply my best year ever, thanks to the changes made in my life.

It started with a relatively new job (actually, the job starting in late 2008) in a new city and state, in which I knew no one. I loved the fresh start, and loved where I lived in Arizona. Driving along the cool, sandy desert calmed me. And I found the cactus to look quite humorous. Even more importantly, I loved my job. I mean it! I was a college recruiter for a community college. I spent my days traveling around the state, teaching high school students how to move forward in life by going to college. I previously worked in law enforcement, where I constantly saw people slip farther and farther backwards, instead of progressing in life. Being a college recruiter was a refreshing change for me.

During the beginning of 2009, I was still finding my way around the city, still making my name known at the college, and I began taking on my own responsibilities at work. I also started my search to look for God.

I was raised in a religious family, but I didn’t believe what I was taught, and therefore believed in nothing for about five and a half years. I wish now that I could take back those five and a half years, but they led me to the exactly where I needed to be.

In the middle of the year, my job shifted a bit, and I was on top of the world, so to speak. I put in long hours and skipped lunches, and lost track of how long I’d been working. By the summer time, I could do the job with my eyes closed. While school was out for the summer, I spent my days designing new recruitment ideas, and writing publications. Did I say I loved my job? Because I really did.

My God quest continued, and I accepted Jesus into my heart as my personal savior exactly one year and one day after I drove down the lone two-way highway and had my photo taken under the “Welcome to Arizona” sign. The single best moment of the entire year, and my entire life, was when I became Christian. Right after that, I met an ambitious, courageous, funny, creative, loving (and very, very handsome) man, who I became engaged to a few months later.

Finding God was like searching for water in a desert. Quite fitting, since I lived in Arizona. I felt complete, whole, and born-again. I drank and drank and drank from the fountain of eternal life. I can’t explain how I felt, except that I finally knew I had met God. Once I became Christian, I was on top of the world again, but it was nothing like loving my job. It far surpassed that.

– – –

The year 2010 began with my husband and I saying “I do” on a frigid day in Atlanta. Because we were preparing to move to Japan, I hadn’t yet quit my job. I was to work until our paperwork was complete, the cars were sold, and the dog was quarantined. Then I would sell my belongings and move across the ocean. Suddenly those plans were interrupted, when my husband found out that his orders had been changed to North Carolina. By that point, I had already quit my job and sold my belongings, so I packed my little life in my suitcases, (which meant begging the baggage ticket guy at the airport to waive the fee for my 53 pound bag) and moved flew across the U.S. to our new home. Everything was so surreal to me. I remember driving to visit my parents in the mountains one last time before I flew to North Carolina. My mom helped me pack my suitcases, offering a shoulder rub to me when I sat down, stunned, that I had already made so many drastic changes, and was about to embark on even more. I cherish those extra moments with my mom that night. I held her courage in my heart, until I could find my own again.

Here we are, in the start of 2011, and I have to say that the single best moment of 2009 was my acceptance of God as my savior; the beginning of a relationship with him. The single best moment of 2010 was my wedding day.

Alas, it’s January, 2011 and it’s goal-setting time. How can I top 2009 and 2010? Those two years simply cannot be outdone. The year 2011 could be my healthiest year ever. I could get into the best shape of my life. Some time this year, we will most likely wind up moving to another state. Moving is a pretty big thing, but I doubt that the single best moment of 2011 is going to be somewhere in that yellow Penske moving truck. Maybe my husband and I will become homeowners, and the best moment will be turning the keys in the door of our new home. Or what if we get a second dog this year! I’ve always wanted a bulldog.

I’ve got it! I am going to refrain from trying to plan the best moment of 2011, and allow for it to happen naturally. Yes, I quite like that idea.

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