Saturday, January 3, 2009

2008 ... a roller coaster year

This past year has been a bit of a roller coaster for me and those around me.

In January, my daughter Dani and my significant other, John had a huge verbal brawl that ended with Dani storming out of the house, into her car and not coming home for 5 days. Not to get into boring details, now neither of them can be in the same house together, both are being terribly immature about it and I'm stuck firmly in the middle. Her father ended up "mediating", which translates to Dani got her way on everything and I got shit.

This past winter also saw John going through Chemo for his Lymphoma. He had his last treatment on Valentine's Day.

Work is going so-so, with the economy beginning the nose-dive. Gas and oil prices were going up and up. As much as my ex is an ass, he did help me and paid $1000 for oil when I couldn't come up with the money.

My oldest child and her boyfriend bought a house in the spring! So good they were able to get out of the apartment and begin to build some equity. Gene has a steady job as a grade school teacher and Gina gets a promotion and her own radio show!

My job is still going ok, but the business is down a bit. Tips are good but the number of tables I wait on a day are less. Still, when I break it down, I'm still making more per hour than if I had that bank job I had applied for several years before.

In April, John went for his 6 month check-up, with CT scan and PET scan and is declared IN REMISSION! The cancer in the lymph nodes, spine and liver are gone!

Tim's doing well in school and Dani is also. She got a good part in her high school's spring musical.

In the summer, Gina had the chance to perform in the NYC Fringe Festival and was in a play written by a friend and is performed in Greenwich Village. Dani and I took the bus to NYC and see this very funny play. So I got to cross something off my "Bucket List"... seeing Gina perform, on stage, in New York! Ah, her theatre degree at work!

I managed to scrape together enough money to go to Ocean City, MD for a week in July with Dani and her friend. I rented a house from my friend and she only charged me $500 for the week.

In October, John and I went back for 5 nights to Ocean City to celebrate our birthdays (mine in Sept, his in Oct) and we had a marvelous time! We spent a fun day at a Celtic Festival near Ocean City.
We also slept late, had picnics on the beach, enjoyed the wild ponies on Assateague Island, and just enjoyed each other's company.

History had been made with the election of Barack Obama as the first black president. Time will tell if this was a good move for our country or not. And I don't mean the black thing... more the lack of experience thing. Who cares what color he is... just do a good job.

John saw his oncologist in November for a check-up only to find 2 small spots on his spleen and they think it might be cancer again. The decision was made to remove the spleen and test it. The surgery is scheduled for Jan. 12, 2009.

The big Christmas rush didn't happen until a week before Christmas. Everyone was being very conservative in their spending and even our gift card sales were down. I kept track of my wages and tips and realized that I'm down $2000 from last year. This sucks, but I still have a job so that's good. And I have enough seniority that others will go before me. All the servers make a whopping $2.83 an hour plus tips, so unless, we close down, I think I'm good.

The last week of the year ended quietly. Dani has been in Oregon from the 27th until today (actually, as I type, she's on a plane, heading for Chicago before connecting to a flight to Philly). I got to spend just about every day with John, either here at my house or at his place.

The year ends with gas and oil prices plummeting and no one's complaining about that! We went from paying $4.25 a gallon for gas in the fall to $1.57 this past week! I never thought I'd see gas go below $3, never mind $2 a gallon!! My oil bills have gone from $3.79 a gallon in September to $2.24 a gallon a few weeks ago.

And I just realized that today is my brother, Marty Farty's 50th birthday! I think I need to call him and harass him a bit!

So, that's Joanie's year in review. I hope I didn't bore you too much. And I SURE hope it doesn't sound like one of those holiday letters you get about how fabulous everyone is! LOL


Braja said...

No it doesn't sound like that and WHAT A RELIEF!!! Love you Joanie :)

Liz said...

Great year-in-review. And I love the pic!! Great to see you!

Irish Gumbo said...

A refreshing change from the typical holiday letter! Honestly and well put!

I am sorry about the interpersonal stress :( but so good to her about the chemo and remission:))

Have fun in OC! Best of luck.

Lilly's Life said...

Interesting post. A big year you have had and here is to a great 2009!!

Temple said...

Wow! Life is a roller coaster and that, I have learned, is the fun of it! Without the dips and falls we don't appreciate the fun on the way back up...and it sounds like you guys are on the upswing again! And don't think I didn't spy the can of Rheddi-Whip in the back ground of the picture :) heehee

Jim and Garret said...

Well, here's to 2009!


Joanie said...

Yup! here's to 2009! And hoping and praying that John's cancer will be gone for good with this next surgery!

Alix said...

Thanks for the speed review. I agree with you about Obama. I was very very worried he would get elected, but now that he has I am looking for things about him that I like. He's pretty smooth and elegant, that's for sure. And he won the White House at a time where it takes a lot of courage to want to be President. I think it's great we have a black President and I think it's great that we can no go forward and see what he can do. One thing I'm not is a sore loser... It will be good for everyone if Obama does well. So I'm hoping he becomes a history making President for more than breaking the color barrier.

As for your rollercoaster life... you sure have had a ride. Let's hope 2009 is boring by comparison.

Love ya sunshine.