As we charge towards the end of the year and thoughts head towards the seasonal holidays that your particular religious beliefs celebrate, it’s a time for spending time with family and loved ones. A time for making new friends, for putting old animosities to bed and looking forward for the new year ahead, while also looking back at where we’ve come from. For remembering what we have achieved over the last twelve months, while thinking about where we want to be in the next twelve. For working out what resolutions we want to make at the beginning of the year, and then give up less than a month later.
As the nights get longer and slightly colder, its nice to take time out of the daily hustle and bustle of the season to relax find a comfy spot; to sit and enjoy the benefits of this festive time of year, like a mulled wine or a mead. My personal favourite thing to do is wood-burner-watching. I love the way the flames dance and the lights on the Christmas tree flicker, while I reminisce.
With that in mind, I’ve seen lots of changes to my life and family this year; some have been subtle changes that really don’t seem to be noticed at the time, but which become obvious later, upon reflection. Then there have been the more noticeable or sometimes major changes within my life, some of these might have seemed like problems or challenges at the time, but what’s life without a few challenges?
This year has had quite a few of these for both Mrs Bob and me over the last twelve months. It began in late spring, with me making what seemed to be the hardest decisions of my life at the time – to leave my employer of the last three years after becoming unhappy there. This was, at the time, one of scariest decisions I’ve had to make, and at points I honestly thought I wouldn’t be able to do it. I had a number of interviews, and after a few I was offered a job that was not a great fit for me but it was a way out of my situation so I reluctantly took the offer and handed my months notice. When I was subsequently offered a chance to meet the owners of a small village pub, I decided that I had nothing to lose and went. Straight away, I felt like this was where I was meant to be. After a chat, we decided that a trial session was the way forward, and long story short, they liked what I brought to the party and offered me a position to manage the front of house team. I’ve been there since May and I’ve never been happier as I’m sure you can tell if you have followed me on social media.
After that, my parents made the decision to sell the family home, where they’ve lived for more than 30 years and move out to the east coast. I thought this was a really good idea, as it wasn’t long ago that my father (ok stepfather, but he’s my dad) had a massive heart attack, collapsed and was air lifted to hospital. He’s made an excellent recovery, but the house was just too big for the two of them and the stairs were very steep for a healthy person, let alone a pensioner with heart issues. While some family members were unhappy about their decision, mum and dad started the process and found a lovely bungalow on the east coast. I’m pleased to say that despite some set-backs, they finally moved in this week, and are settling in for their first Christmas in the new home. I wish them every happiness there and know they’ll make some wonderful memories there.
The other mahoosive newss was that my eldest daughter fell pregnant in March. Finding out that you’re going to be a grandad would, for some, be earth-shattering, life-changing news, but I didn’t process it in a neurotypical way. It didn’t seem very real to me at all. This worried me somewhat – what if I didn’t differently when my granddaughter finally arrived in this world? Well, I can say that she was born at 0303hrs on 17th December, and I was sent the first photo while I was at work. Laying eyes on the next generation of my bloodline, I can honestly say that, had I not been at work, I would have been very emotional, and I can’t wait to take a trip up north to see them in January, hold the little cherub and welcome her to the family. I think Mrs Bob is even more excited than me, but we shall see when the time comes.
This concludes the major news. The other items are all small in comparison; things like the fact that I have started working on a podcast. It’s an idea I’ve had for a while, and decided to try it out; the initial reaction was good so I think I’ll try a second one. I’ve stopped shooting with the archery club, due to work commitments. I’ve had great reviews of my book, and I’ve been interviewed for a couple of things, which will hopefully raise some awareness of autism. I’m also working on another book project, which I’m hoping will be ready by this time next year, all being well.
So, that’s my review of my year. Please, do take this holiday season to look back and be thankful for all the blessings that have been bestowed on you this year and ponder what may be in 2018.
Stay Safe X