March 14, 2014

The Best Decade of My Life

I think if one is going to pick out a decade of their life to be labeled the "best", it should be as an adult vs. child, because I think choosing 10 years from your childhood as your best or favorite is pretty much cheating. Of course all of us could say those were some of the best, now that we're in the trenches of adulthood.

As long as you had a decent childhood, clearly you'd love to be a kid again. We know now that, despite having to keep our rooms clean, it was SO MUCH EASIER.

I contemplated this thought, though: what was my favorite decade? What chunk of time did the best things happen? What would I love to go back and experience again, only this time really living in those moments, nary a drop of impatience for the next thing?

I think it would have to be the years between the ages of 23 and 33.

Now I'm not saying I think it's all downhill from here, that I have nothing left to look forward to, or that maybe some decade in the future might not be one of my best. I'm only turning 40 next month, not 80!

But you know, the things that happened in the years between 1997-2007 will remain, no matter whatever else happens before I die, some of the best and most important of my life.

~ Mark asked me to marry him on my 23rd birthday. Officially, that is. We had been talking about spending the rest of our lives together for years already.

~ We got married a little over a year later, when I was 24, and proceeded to enjoy a super fun and fabulous honeymoon in San Diego.

Just under a year after our wedding, I turned 25 and promptly got the serious urge to have a baby. I was in a very long process of applying for a job with the city where we lived at the time so I told myself and Mark if I got the job, we'd wait another year, if I didn't, we could go ahead and try. I didn't get the job.

~ The following year, in July, we welcomed our millennium baby, Camryn, into the world.

Technically, this was 2004, but sshh, it doesn't matter!
Also, three generations.

Now, the next few things are a bit up and down. Or down and up, and down.

~ When Camryn was a year and a half old, winter of 2002, Mark lost his transplanted kidney and pancreas, necessitating a return to insulin and dialysis. It totally sucked.

Now that we had a child, dealing with Mark's health problems became a bigger burden for me. I could no longer stay overnight at the hospital with him, or spend a whole lot of time at the hospital with a child, for that matter. Living in the SF Bay Area, we were completely on our own. I had no help.

~ After much thought, research and discussion, we decided to move to Washington state in June 2003, where I was from and still had family. This was a very good thing. It's been almost 11 years and I've never regretted that decision.

~ Once we settled in Washington, we had to deal with our financial situation. Everything we had been through to date with Mark's health, residing in a place with a very high cost of living, and just plain ole poor judgement, meant we had to file for bankruptcy. Not great.

So there's the iffy stuff. Throw in making some pretty great new friends, and you can see how I might still consider this time in my life to be good.

And then!

~ A couple of years later, in January of 2006, when I was 31 3/4, our family was completed with the birth of our son AJ.

~ For the next year+ I got to coo at and cuddle and love on a baby. He turned eight this year. Sigh.

Unless you know of a fairy Godmother who could magically take away the loss of my husband's transplant and going into bankruptcy, I think I'm stuck with those two bad things.

Otherwise, it was a heckuva decade!

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post.

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