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Deep Thoughts

For anyone over the age of 40, and has watched Saturday Night Live back in the 1990s, they may remember the short segment titled "Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey".

Many people don't realize that Jack Handey was a real person, and those were his thoughts. Most don't know that he actually did the voice over work on that segment.

He had some awesome funny thoughts.

I was having some deep thoughts as I ran this morning. Today is January 2, 2022.

Maybe reflections is a better way of describing it, but there were still some "deep thoughts" in there, like, "Where did Willie go hibernate? I miss him."

Anyway as I jogged in the mist, I thought back on the past year.

We survived another year of Covid...and it sure doesn't look like it will end anytime soon, regardless of vaccination status.

What started out so promising, 2021, ended up with a spike in the wrong direction. We hit a 20% positivity rate, something we had not experienced since the beginning of the pandemic.

It looked like the BHAG was back on in January 2021. In fact, just days before the New Year, The Voice of Ironman, Mike Reilly, confirmed he would be announcing at IM Mont-Tremblant.

By June, however, they pulled the plug, due to the uncertainty of opening the Canadian border, among other issues. They did not offer a deferral like 2020, because the contract with IM was up, and the negotiations had just begun. I got my money back.

They are planning on racing in Mont-Tremblant in 2022. But I won't be there.

In fact, my racing calendar is pretty wide open right now.

I did get to race in 2021. A DNF at Patriot, but a solid effort and top ten age group finish at Rev3 New England.

I really need to figure out Patriot. I'm 1 for 3, and not happy about that. But it won't happen in 2022.

I had some good running races with my friends. A great half marathon in October, and a sucky 10 miler in November. And we had some fun adventures on the beach and hiking in the mountains.

I need to get them both out on our bikes more!!!

In fact, I went for a run on December 31st with one of them. She said she needed 4 miles to hit 800 for the year! We did our 4 miles so she could reach that milestone! Then we did some yoga!

Man, I miss yoga!

But that conversation made me think I should check my statistics...

I rode my bike (both on the indoor trainer and on the road) just over 2215 miles.

I ran 512 miles

I only swam 28,500 yards, but that does not include the swim cords work that I did in my basement when the pools were still closed at the beginning of 2021.

I walked over 205 miles

I was on my feet a lot!

My boys also had some major accomplishments.

B crossed over into Scouts, and has already advanced to the Tenderfoot level. He went to summer camp and several campouts, including hiking Mt. Greylock, the highest mountain in Massachusetts.

He also took on a leadership position as a Den Chief for a local Wolf pack of Cub Scouts.

He also advanced to the 2nd Class Brown Belt in Karate. Only one more (3rd class Brown Belt) until Black Belt.

And would you believe he is a math wiz? He was selected by his teacher to compete in the Math Olympiad! And he gets to do it with his best friend, which makes it even better!

J won his school's spirit award, for his demonstration daily of good character traits. If you know him, you'll know just what a huge achievement is for him.

He also has improved enough that they are experimenting with going back to riding the bus, as well as other things as he keeps working toward his independence.

I've also gotten J to start climbing the rock wall at the local Y. He has a way to go before reaching the top, but if we keep going, I know he will get there soon enough!

My hubby, I think, just tries to keep up with all the things we have going on.

And then there is me.

Who knew that a year ago I'd actually be re-starting my museum career. I truly believed that my time in the museum world was in the past, and I was onto new adventures.

Boy was I wrong.

Tomorrow I start my new career as the Curator of Education for the 4 state run museums operated by the Department of Economic and Community Development. A lot has changed in the 19 years since I was there, and I'm sure there will be even more as I go.

I am looking forward to it.

But I am also reflecting on the things we've lost this year.

Several of my friends lost parents (thankfully not to Covid). Relationships have dissolved. Friendships gone.

We lost Betty White for God's sake on December 31!

I'm leaving a workplace where I have been for 10 years. A place that has seen my kids grow up. Co-workers that have encouraged each other. A workplace family that I know I will never have anywhere else.

Photo taken my last day of work! Photo by Luke Wayne

But in typical American way, we don't dwell on the negative. We look to the future, and seek to make things better. I think Ronald Reagan said it best:

I've always thought New Year's Day was an especially American tradition, full of the optimism and hope we're famous for in our daily lives -- an energy and confidence we call the American spirit. Perhaps because we know we control our own destiny, we believe deep down inside that working together we can make each new year better than the old. ... Let us renew our faith that as free men and women we still have the power to better our lives, and let us resolve to face the challenges of the new year holding that conviction firmly in our hearts. That, after all, is our greatest strength and our greatest gift as Americans.

And so, as 2022 begins, I will look to the future with optimism. I will stop stressing about the new job, who will make dinner, and get the boys off to their activities. I won't worry about if I'll race this year, or if I'll even come close to the miles I trained in 2021. I won't worry about Covid. Period.

We will make it happen.

Happy New Year everyone! Let's make 2022 something positively amazing!

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