What a difference a year makes

Today's my birthday. I've been reflecting on how vastly different this year is from last year, and how much happier I am.

Last year I was turning 35, and was feeling like a caged animal. I'd started trying to get divorced when I was 33, and here I was turning 35 with no end in sight. We were still slowly grinding through the mediation process, and he was still living in the apartment, and I was coming up on year 3 of sleeping on the couch, and I honestly wasn't sure if I was ever going to be free. The helplessness and hopelessness I felt alternated with my pride in having slogged through so much of the process already, and having made the radical life changes I needed to for myself and my kids.

I don't know if it would have helped me to know where I'd be this year. Yes, I am divorced and thrilled to be myself. I'm not in a fulltime job I don't like anymore. But I'm still in progress, still working on living the life I'd like to be living. I have someone extraordinary and special in my life now, and I know I wouldn't have been able to get to him without all those years of pain and losing. But a year still seems like forever, so knowing a year ago that I'd have to wait a year for that, might still have been too much for me.

But now I'm 36! Here I am, and it's a happy birthday, except that I had to leave waaaaay too early this morning for a job for one of my freelance gigs. (Awesome product, but I wish the training sessions I'm doing for it could start two hours later. But, seriously, I get paid to show people something really cool and useful.) I have the two most amazing boys in the world, and tons of friends, and too many ideas to take advantage of. My real-life friends have been asking what I want for my birthday, and, honestly, the only thing I need (besides an entirely different living space and a full-time assistant or two) is a roll of quarters for laundry. And maybe some chocolate. And for Anoop to get one of the wildcard spots on AI.

Let's also please not forget that I share my birthday with Johnny Cash! So here's my present to you:

60 thoughts on “What a difference a year makes”

  1. Good on you Moxie. This past year you, unknowingly, gave me the hope and energy I needed to extricate myself from a loveless marriage. Six months on I’m still, as you say, a work in progress, but so very much happier than I’ve been in a long time.Thank you Moxie – and happy birthday to ya!

  2. Happy Birthday! May this year also be one of growth, just less the dramatic and challenging kind, more the slow and steady kind.

  3. Happy Birthday, Moxie! And very glad you’re happier than you were a year ago! (I am too…!) Let’s all keep getting better and better….

  4. I totally hear you on Anoop! He got robbed. C’mon wildcard. And Happy Birthday! So glad your life has changed for the better. Admittedly I think we are always a work in progress in some ways, until our last days on earth. Enjoy your journey.

  5. Happy Birthday! A year usually doesn’t feel that long as a grown-up, at least compared to a kid who thinks a year is forever. In my life, this year has been radical as well. And I am glad it has been in yours.

  6. Happy Birthday! It’s interesting, even though my life is very different than yours, I really struggled at my 35th birthday and then really embraced things at my 36th birthday. I hope you have a wonderful year and that 37 brings you even more joy.

  7. Happy Birthday! Wow, you’ve come a long way. I’m so happy for you to be getting happy about your life.I send you a virtual roll of quarters, and some of that ‘choxie’ chocolate from Target!
    Hope you have a happy day!

  8. Happy birthday Moxie! On this most special of days, I just want to tell you that you have been a blessing to me. I hope you have a wonderful day, and a wonderful next year!

  9. Happy Birthday!And just to tell you how important you are to me, I just want to tell you that I have had not one, but two dreams about you. (Let’s put aside the fact that I don’t actually know what you look like.) In one you were on a date at a restaurant. In another you were my neighbor across the hall, which would be AWESOME!
    Have a truly happy birthday!

  10. Happy birthday, Moxie and a wish that things get better and better for you every day of your life.ANOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOP!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Happy Birthday Moxie!! And thanks for that clip… actually made me tear up a little. Hooray for moving forward, and feeling good about it!!

  12. Happy, happy Moxie. I hope everything you do for the wounded mom soul comes back to you tenfold this year. Thanks again for yesterday’s advice.

  13. Happy birthday, Moxie!Now, these assistants you want, are you talking about humans, or those trained monkeys you frequently mention? There must be some chic boutique in Manhattan that stocks them….

  14. As wiser souls than I have said, HIPY PAPY BTHUTHDTH THUTHDA BTHUTHDY. And many happy returns of the day. And many, many, many thanks for all you do to make me happier and my mothering lighter.

  15. happy birthday, mama! i know that this year will be so much better than the last- i’m sending you good wishes and hopes for the very best!!

  16. Happy Birthday Moxie! It’s wonderful to be able to look back and see what you’ve accomplished–and you deserve every bit of it! Congratulations, and thank you for this site–it is truly a gift for all of us.

  17. Happy birthday Moxie. Glad everyhting is wfinally working out for you. Thanks for the clip. My kids (4 and 2) will love it. Every time I get on the computer, they badger me to see JC’s ‘ring of fire’. Something else to add to teh repertoir.p.s You kept the news about your man under wraps, hey? Knew you were a saucy one!!

  18. Happy birthday, Moxie! So glad you have found someone extraordinary. Shockingly enough, I have, too — just in the past month. Maybe happiness is still possible at 37? I wish you a happy 36.

  19. Happy Birthday, Moxie! I suspect next year you will be in an even better place. Congratulations on finding someone special. You really do deserve it.

  20. Happy Birthday! Today is my birthday too – 33 to be exact. I’m at a great place and incredibly fortunate as well. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading you for years now (hard as that is to believe!) and I hope you have the very best possible birthday.

  21. Ma chère Moxie, c’est à ton tour, de te laisser parler d’amour… (That’s how we sing happy birthday where I come from…it’s quite appropriate for you). Thanks for everything.

  22. Happy Birthday, Moxie! Your site is preventing me from going around the bend, even as we speak. You’re doing an amazing amount of good, in all arenas. PLUS a gentleman caller! The view is good from 36, huh?Anoop. Word. Bring my boy BACK!

  23. Here’s to ALWAYS being a work in progress. I say, NEVER be complete… If you aren’t living, you are dying and that breaks rule number one… So, LIVE!!!Good for you girl… I’m glad you are happy(er)

  24. happy birthday, moxie – i was just reading the archives & remembered what brought me here. my 14mo had surgery to re-attach his intestines & get rid of the ostomy (micropreemie with nec) and the doc warned me that he was about to have god’s own diaper rash. they were totally right! anyway, i found you through parenthacks and the entry about the sis or sil who wanted her baby to ‘gut out’ his diaper rash & everybody’s ideas…well, they were gold! thank you very much for this space, and i hope it gives you a small amount back for the huge amount you’re giving us!

  25. Oh enormous happy birthday wishes to you my friend !!!I am SO happy you have found someone extraordinary – my wish for us all!
    Have a fabulous birthday, a fabulous year-to-come – and hope your life just gets better and better with your amazing kids and your amazing man – not to mention your amazing self ! lol
    OK, now, you have to go and print each and every one of these birthday wishes onto a separate piece of paper, and imagine that they are cards you have received in real life. How important and loved you would feel to have such a full mailbox!!! Well, you have a full cyber-mail box from those of us who adore you.
    Many happy returns.

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