2010 started off ruff. It was a really cruddy beginning to the new year, and as my often-pessimistic widda attitude warrants, I wasn’t excited for 2010 at all.

But then, I won an award for my 2009 article with Associated Content on U.S. healthcare. This was an absolute game changer for my freelance writing. I no longer felt as if I was just putting words out there for my own benefit, but I was validated for my efforts.

The Today Show phone interview, while an interesting opportunity, was a mess. But it raised a lot of conversation on dating/widowhood which was needed. You can read my blog and even still see the video! .

I picked up 3 travel writing assignments: One to Tioga County, PA, the second to Northeastern Pennsylvania and the last to Pittsburgh! These opportunities have given me the courage to seek out assignments on my own, and now I’m working setting up assignments to Harpers Ferry, WV, Lake Placid, NY and Vermont!

In the first few months of 2010, I lost 30 pounds!! It was hard work, and I’ve gained 12 back, ugh, but I’m still happy about being slightly slimmer. I keep hoping I’ll get the motivation/mindset to work on that again, and at least get in better shape and score some more energy out of the deal.

In May, over my birthday weekend, one of my besties and I traveled to the Great Smokey Mountain National Park in TN, one of the national parks that I had been ANXIOUS to cross off my list! It was then that I decided to make a “bucket list” and to visit all 57 (I believe) of the main National Parks before I die. I’m not quite sure how many I have visited, but I believe it’s about 12 so far.

July came and went QUICKLY, and with it me and my fabulous team of friends, family, and complete strangers raised $5000 before expenses for the first ever Central Pa Team Sarcoma: Keepin’ it Kevin, Bike, Walk & Run event! It was an amazing success, and through it, I met a great number of survivors and family members of survivors. It was awesome.

I entered into a relationship in April, and it’s been going strong ever since. No doubt, there are ups and downs as we adjust to each others lives, and our pasts, but it has been a great experience. I am so happy to have someone to share my life with again.

I gave my first speaking engagement at a local bookstore, and while only my close friends and family showed up, it was a good experience. It allowed me to openly speak in an organized forum on my grief, and also gave me a chance to preview my memoir.

My memoir is slowly but surely coming along, and with the help of some great editor/writing friends, I revamped the layout and consider myself between 1/4-1/2 completed. While I had a goal to finish the memoir by the end of this year, with school, that was just not feasible. Not to mention, everytime I write, I then have to deal with the emotional ramifications of what I am writing. It’s a constant grieving process when I delve back into the land of Kevin & I’s memories, good and bad. So, new goal? Let’s try for next year!

I would say the biggest accomplishment of the year, however, is finishing my degree. It has been a trial, one I am proud to say I overcame. So in just 2 days, I’ll walk the stage and receive my degree in Business-YAY!

I have been absolutely blessed this year, and although I struggle to remember that at times, I do much that helps many. And many do much to help me. Thank you for helping me make these things happen!!

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Comments 3

  1. Wow, Brenda, you’ve accomplished so much this year! You should get a National Parks passport, that way you’ll be able to keep track of each one that you’ve visited. Of course, you’d have to go back to the ones you’ve already been to…

    Congratulations on getting your degree and all of your other accomplishments! May 2011 be even better :^)

  2. This is a really nice post – I like how you looked back at your year and what you accomplished! And congrats on your many accomplishments and may you continue to have blessings in the new year!

  3. Good for you! I watched the idiots on the TODAY show and agree with your assessment. That woman needs a job on the Jerry Springer show.

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