Being so utterly disappointed in Facebook’s interpretation of my 2016, I decided to think seriously about how my year actually has gone. As far as things go, it’s been a pretty big one. Over the next 10 days, I’ll be reviewing my year by alternating between the worst and best bits of the year. I hope that the introspection and discussion can set us up for a better year next year.
On November 29th 2016, not two weeks hence I write this sentence, I walked out of my Viva Voce examination as Doctor of Philosophy. But that’s not the moment I wish to reflect on here. I didn’t enjoy the news. I wasn’t happy: I was hollow. A few days later, I landed my current job as a postdoc. The first real job I’ve had for years. I was similarly absent of all emotion.
No. You see, I didn’t feel proud of myself and I didn’t feel like I deserved it. I could relax – and did – but I couldn’t really smile. I couldn’t be proud of myself.
Cut to Saturday 10th December. I am still hollow, but I’m visiting family for Christmas & hoping for a good distraction. I walk into the house and I’m greeted by my Uncle Tim – he takes one look at me and grins.
Oooh Doctor, can you sort my knee out?
I turn around to find my Uncle Simon – picture off-duty Santa with an illustrious career in law – also grinning and congratulating me. My Auntie jumps in, and there are my parents, and when my Cousin & her kids arrive, and another Auntie…
Suddenly I can be happy.
If they are proud of me, I can be too.