2016 for me personally was a year of good change.
I am still employed for which I am deeply thankful.
Those November job cuts really freaked me out.
I am hoping for job stability in 2017.
This year I found Rob, and I'm really happy about that. It's really, really nice to have a boyfriend.
I had a couple of (now former) friends who really looked down on me because I was the terminally single one. They would say, "Oh leave Daya with me." That's not going to work on any kind of regular basis when they live three neighborhoods over. That's a lot of traveling, for me and for Daya. People don't think logistics through, they like to give you a simplified answer to your "problems" without knowing or thinking through the details of reality, especially from your perspective, not theirs. And when you think through those details and say, "No, that won't work logistically," they act like you are making excuses.
I don't care what people say, when you are **literally by yourself** raising a child, and you don't have help with someone watching the child and helping with the daily stuff it really isn't possible logistically to go out dating or carve out regular time for a significant other. Everyone else who manages it has money for a sitter, or the other parent, or friends/family to stay with the child. Which all of them had.
This is the area my friend Jackie and I really understand about each other- we were both completely alone from the start. She gets it. And I understand this about her, too. She never looked down on me or judged me, because it was the same for her and she knew.
Let's also not mention that during the week, after getting your child to school, you go to work, collect child, come home, get child fed etc it is 8pm and you're DONE. And weekends are about getting all the home stuff done (hopefully), getting the child to lessons or whatever. There is no help with any logistics. Your entire life is completely tied down.
I'm really proud of myself for continuing to paint through those years....but it is something I can do at home. When I started plein air painting most of it was done with vacation days. And it still is.
Even now, I have logistical constraints with Rob and my availability. We often manage to see each other once during the week but it revolves around Daya and needing to get her from dance. I cannot stay overnights- ever. Daya is too young for that. He can stay here, and he has done so a couple of times, like Christmas, but Daya is here too which makes things different. Not bad or worse, just different.
Daya likes Rob, though the two of them don't have much connection and that is ok. Rob has no experience with kids, especially tweenage girls. I think Daya would like to have a connection but it will be harder for her with Rob because he doesn't have any experience with kids. Besides that, I really consider my relationship with Rob to be about the two of us and not about Daya. I don't want to force anything, and I want my own adult time and space.
That being said, this is one of my favorite pictures from this year, from the Medieval Faire in September. Daya climbed the rocks and Rob went right up after her.