Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 in Quotes

Like every blogger, I have an end of the year post!

I have learned more about myself in 2009 than any other year. It was the year I became a full-time single mom. It was the year I graduated. It was the year I was dealt some tough cards and I learned who I really am in dealing with them. It was the year I was forced to dig deep. It was the year I learned to accept my flawed, exuberant self.

Which is a lot.

I like to get my way, I am already a loud talker and that just gets magnified when I drink and I always try to get too much done every day. I used to freak out when my calendar wasn't filled and while I still keep a fairly active social life, I've learned to really enjoy quiet time alone. My best and worst quality is that I wear my heart on my sleeve and I let people into my life freely. You get all of me- the good, the bad, the loud, the overly honest, the emotional, the frustrated, the indecisive. I am incapable of holding grudges and probably forgive too easily. I am kind to everyone, even when they don't deserve it or don't even want it. This, of course, means that I leave myself wide open to getting hurt. But that is just the way God created me.

I feel like I spent my younger twenties trying to look like I had it all together. I wanted to be happy. I wanted to look happy. I tried to convince myself that my life was just as it was supposed to be, even though I knew it wasn't.

This year I came to terms that my life isn't what I thought it would be. I thought I would be happily married and on my way to five children! I thought I'd be staying at home and throwing dinner parties with my husband on the weekend, the husband who took care of the family. I am decidedly single with one amazing little boy. I work 40 hours a week. And I throw some pretty fun girls' nights. So the picture is not what I thought it would be. But I am absolutely certain that I would not be who I am today without this path, without all of the struggles I've had, without being forced to do this all on my own.

And the funny thing is, I totally stopped worrying about looking happy. Granted, I may have been a little emotional while wrapping Christmas presents alone, thinking about everyone who gets to share that task with another. And I laugh a little too forced and loud when I state that I do not have one girlfriend who is single. Not one! Even if I count my girlfriends in other states!

But my heart is at peace. I've accepted imperfect me. And despite ups and downs and drama, that has made 2009 the best year ever. I'm genuinely happy.

I have a lovely girlfriend in another state with whom I email regularly. We often share "quotes of the day." Here are some of my favorites from the year:

"Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn't know you left open." ~John Barrymore

“Your beloved and your friends were once strangers. Somehow at a particular time, they came from the distance toward your life. Their arrival seemed so accidental and contingent. Now your life is unimaginable without them.” ~John O’Donohue

“Life is too precious, too important, too short for quick fixes that in the end fix nothing and from which we learn nothing except that we have wasted our time trying to find happiness in short cuts. The only way to real fulfilment is to look inside see what is there, then look outside and see what difference we can make with what we have to offer - whether we knew we had it in us, or whether it was something we grew within us over the coldest, most seemingly dormant, or darkest times, in order to reap the richest harvest of all.” ~Jacquelene Close Moore

“We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us something is valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” ~e.e. cummings

"A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you are slightly cracked." ~Bernard Meltzer

“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day. ~Rainer Maria Rilke

“For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin--real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.” ~Alfred D. Souza

"Do everything. Love as much as you may hurt but it helps us grow. Give all you may be poor but you will be content. Always forgive...your heart can not afford not to. Teach what you know and learn what you don't. Stay open to all." ~Anonymous

“Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling.” ~Margaret Lee Runbeck

“Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort, of the feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all right out, just as they are, chaff and grain together; certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and with the breath of kindness blow the rest away.” ~Rex Cole

"Any emotion, if it is sincere, is involuntary." ~ Mark Twain

"I must learn to love the fool in me--the one who feels too much, talks too much, takes too many chances, wins sometimes and loses often, lacks self-control, loves and hates, hurts and gets hurt, promises and breaks promises, laughs and cries. It alone protects me against that utterly self-controlled, masterful tyrant whom I also harbor and who would rob me of human aliveness, humility, and dignity but for my fool." ~Theodore I. Rubin, MD

“The greatest loss of time is delay and expectation, which depend upon the future. We let go the present, which we have in our power, and look forward to that which depends upon chance, and so relinquish a certainty for an uncertainty.” ~Seneca

These were all quotes that were sent through emails during 2009. I encourage you to live in the present.

The best to you in 2010!!


  1. LOVE the Mark Twain quote. Love it.

    Hope you have a great New Years!

  2. I agree - the Mark Twain quote rocks!
    Here via LA Single Mama and glad to have found you. Looking forward to getting to know you in 2010. Happy New Year to you and yours!

  3. My favorite quote for the year: "Life is 10% what you make it, 90% how you take it." :) don't know who said it, but i love it! and i like the Margaret Lee Runbeck quote :) Happy New Year!!!

  4. The quotes are all wonderful! Thank you for sharing! However, I am more affected by what you wrote about yourself and your year. Penelope - you are freaking me out! I could have written that (not as well, mind you)! I felt like I was reading about myself.

    I'm so happy that you've found happiness in imperfection, too.

    Happy New Year to you! I hope that your awesome 2009 was just a launchpad...

  5. I LOVE the Rex Cole quote, the Souza quote, oh darn it, they ALL are pretty good! Thanks for sharing them. This is such a heartfelt post, I truly wish you the best in the New Year. Thank you for stopping by my site. I hope to read much more of yours.

  6. Almost forgot to answer your question- SITS represents The Secret is in the Sauce. It's a website dedicated to introducing women bloggers to each other and encouraging commenting. Very supportive in this sometimes lonely blogosphere! Here's the link if you are interested:

  7. Internal happiness is something some of us strive OH SO hard to achieve. Knowing you managed to find it, even if at times you slipped is a really wonderful accomplishment.