Years have their ups and downs. I think everyone's in agreement that 2010 was a pretty terrible year. 2011 hasn't been much better, frankly, and my hopes aren't high for 2012 (unless someone ousts the Coalition government somehow). But on an individual level, 2011 has had its high points for me, although the first half of the year was pretty bad. Let's go through it.
New Year's Day was one of the worst days of my life, as I was dumped by my girlfriend of two-and-a-half-years without any form of recognisable reason. I still don't understand. I never will unless I get a comprehensive explanation. At least with Rebecca, she was a cheat. With TD, I was left confused as well as upset, and the gloomy train journey back from Oxford was one of the worst few hours of my entire life. I'd lost my girlfriend, and my job, which was dependent on me working with her mother. It's really the worst way to start off a year, and there was no indication that it was coming as well, which is why it was such a shock.
I was on a downward spiral throughout the first couple of months. There were a few high points, including the evening spent reviewing The Lovers' Guide 3D and dating myself on Valentine's, but I hadn't fully recovered by my birthday, despite getting a new haircut. I was still quite emotional at this point, but over the course of April, I gradually managed to get my sense of humour back, accompanied (maybe even helped somewhat) that I had a couple of weeks in April where I was trying to detox on flavoured water, and I think I got my sexy back around that time.
And then we have May.
May has always been a rollercoaster of a month to me. I don't know what it is about that month, the pre-summer buoyancy or the slightly intangible sense of expectancy that something will happen. I've always been of the opinion that if something will happen, it will in May - since I started school. It's the start of the summer term and the holidays come afterwards. And this year, many things happened.
I started May on a terrible low. I made an ATM smile, met another blogger, and broke my DVD player with hardcore porn. I reviewed said porn, was buoyed by the Beatitudes, talked to my cat in order to masturbate with my bedroom door open, and spent a couple of weeks feeling really uncharacteristically dirty, with filthy dreams and unholy urges. At the end of the month, I went to Woodcraft camp, for the first time in years. I loved it with my whole heart, and I started June on a high.
I had a good summer. June, during which I completed a NaBloPoMo mostly by accident, had jumping semen, the urge for a jacuzzi, the incredible SlutWalk (during which I resuscitated a bee), chastisted my sister for dating a married man, started eating Snickers for breakfast, realised my trousers have holes in, and for the first time ever, put a picture of my whole body on my blog. I ended the month, again on a bit of a low, but by that point I had started flirting with a virgin not named Catharine, and through the following July, this developed into a relationship. We went on a date, and then another. By the time my summer holidays started, I had a new girlfriend. I was also in a new band. Things were looking up.
I had a great summer. Don't begrudge me for it. I had a fantastic road trip to the West Country with 47 and two girls. My family holiday was average; some bits of it made me cry, but it was pretty good in parts - people laughed hilariously at me and my dad doing our comedy bits during the turns night, and a replica Princess Catherine ring did the rounds during the naff presents game. I went on my first holiday with Catharine, and although we did have sex on our third date, it wasn't fully penetrative and she remained a virgin. But I got bitten, so I guess that's... okay...? I also met a lot of blogging and tweeting people over the summer, and started September slightly refreshed.
September was pretty dull. I went to my girlfriend's house for the first time, but the rest of the month was quite droll. I did a bit of volunteer work. Not much happened. In October, however, I re-entered full-time education, taking a course which lasted a little less than a month, but for which I put in an insane amount of hard work. I consider it just below my English degree, but about three trillion miles above my other degree, in terms of enjoyment and usefulness. And, Glod help me, but I actually quite enjoyed it. The certificate, incidentally, was actually awarded by one of the Oxbridge universities (although I won't say which one) - so I actually got my Oxbridge qualification. It took me years and through a rather twisting route, but I finally achieved the academic peak that everyone assumed I'd reach.
Take THAT, year 6 teacher!
I grew a moustache in Movember, finishing off my course and feeling my sexual charge growing again, making it back onto Rori's Top 100 list (after a conspicuous absence last year) at a whole nine places above where I'd been in 2009. In December, I met up with some people I haven't seen for over a year, and had a lot of fun. I also visited Catharine, who by this point had gained the title of cutieloveheartgirl. The first half of the month, however, was overshadowed by the death of Rebecca, which put a bit of a downer on things. I saw 47 again, for the last time this year, who was coping incredibly well, and admitted that he didn't know how to grieve. I was called special and then moved on towards Christmas, which was okay.
And that's my year.
So has it been a good one? No. But it's been okay. Frankly, anything would have been better than 2010. Socially, it's actually been a pretty good year, considering how terribly it started. I didn't actually think I was particularly strong, but as it turns out, I possibly am. How strange. I've had my share of incredibly bad bits this year, but hasn't everyone?
Ask my mother and she'll tell you that my year was characterised by not having a job. But in the grand scheme of things, I don't care. Since I started school, there hasn't been a period where I haven't been either in education, employed or volunteering in some form or another. I can't claim to be a workaholic because I am, in fact, incredibly lazy. But I'm not complaining about not having a job. It's made me a little more introspective, but to be honest, I've actually quite enjoyed it. I've spent a year out of employment, not deliberately of course, but out of employment in any case, solidifying who I am and where I want to be going. This isn't where I thought I'd be when the year started, but actually, I'm okay with things as they are for the moment. There'll be some movement in 2012, of course, but again, who knows?
I guess the important thing is... I survived. And I hope to survive the next one too. I'd say "happy new year", but really, we all know that's nothing more than a wish. So. Onward to the new year, everyone, and let's try to make it at least bearable for all involved. And to everyone who's said a single word of encouragement or friendship, or shown me any love this year, thank you too.