Parties can have impact.
Somewhere between the mini crab cakes and the oyster tray, the chicken pastry puffs and my second or third lemon drop/green apple from the martini bar at my company holiday party on Saturday night, I realized how much has changed over the past year. It seems like 2004 sucked for pretty much everyone, but 2005 has opened a few new doors and windows. It’s nice to look back and smile instead of wanting to open a vein.
I remember sitting at a table with the rest of my department at last year’s holiday party, the only person without a date. No matter how hard you try to ignore being single, sometimes it’s just lonely and it was lonely that night. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Lunchboy walk in with his then-girlfriend. “He’s so hot,” I thought. “Too bad he’s taken.” This year we went to the party together.
After four years of nonstop change, I feel like I’ve finally found my rhythm. I’ve had the same job and the same apartment for a year—what a concept. I found a relationship with someone who doesn’t want to change me. I found out what I need in life and finally got a sense of who I am regardless of who I’m with. I found out who my friends are and who they aren’t. I watched my friends do kickass things with their lives. I got some direction. I got my self-esteem back.
This time last year, I was still having random crying jags. Now I finally understand the concept of contentment. Ok, it’s hard not to feel pretty damned good after three martinis, a shot of vodka and a glass of champagne (except the next day, when everything is kind of fuzzy), but it wasn’t just the alcohol or the cheesy end-of-year sentimentality. Things aren’t always going to be as good as they are now, so I’m grateful for what I’ve got (that includes my controversial roommate, who pays half the rent and keeps things interesting!)