2018: a year in review
There’s only a few days left in 2018! How can that be? I’m sure you’ve heard that the older you get, the faster time passes… and it’s totally true! Well, time passes at the same speed, but your perception of it changes, because a year when you are 5 years old feels way longer than when you are 50 years old. After all, it’s 20% of your lifetime at 5 and only 2% at 50!
In this post I wanted to make a quick summary of what happened in my life during this year. There was one big change, but I didn’t feel like I did much at all…
I started 2018 taking the first pregnancy test of my life and seeing a positive on it. Thus I spent most of the year pregnant and going to the hospital more often that ever in my life. I was even hospitalised for the first time in my then 33 years because of a potentially dangerous-for-the-baby liver condition that was triggered by pregnancy hormones. I absolutely hated being in the hospital because I couldn’t sleep at all and even ended up crying after 4 sleepless nights (and it was only the second time I cried in the whole pregnancy. Those hormones didn’t affect me. Or maybe, like an ex used to say, I have a heart of stone). Compared to being in the hospital, having a breastfed baby who wakes up every 3 hours seems like a breeze! At least I can sleep in chunks of 3 hours!
Given that I didn’t know absolutely anything about pregnancy or babies, I panicked a little and started reading tons of books about pregnancy (1 book), birth (3) and breastfeeding (5). Yep, now I know that I didn’t need to read so many books about breastfeeding because they all say more or less the same. Looking on the bright side, I haven’t had any problem in that field, so maybe the books helped. I also managed to read books about other topics, but my China-related book list of 2018 is so short that this year’s post will be quite brief…
I gave birth on the last day of August and everything went well. After having the baby, my blog posting activity has taken a serious dip as it just doesn’t feel right to ignore the baby and turn the computer on. Well, also because the baby has the superpower to awake instantly the moment I try to get up from the sofa to put him in his crib, so most day naps are slept on my lap. I spend so much time on my phone now… but I also managed to read the whole Harry Potter saga while breastfeeding/acting as a human bed.
I wrote a post about my first two months with Baby A., and now two months later things are still more or less the same. He is still an easy baby, although lately he cries a little bit more (it must be the 4th month leap) and stays awake for longer so I spend more time playing and reading to him. My MIL is still here when C. is working and that’s why I can still update the blog once in a while. I have been quite grumpy for several weeks because the air pollution was awful and we couldn’t go out, but luckily these last days have been better (fingers crossed it stays like this! I have to make the most of my last weeks of maternity leave!).
The blog had more visits than last year, even though I published less posts. Like last year, the months with more views have been October, November and December, because it’s persimmon season and it’s when people start googling all kind of crazy persimmon beliefs. Seriously, it seems persimmon should be the number one cause of death worldwide. The search word which brought more visitors to my blog was… yes, persimmon. I should start a persimmon business or something.
Regarding work, I feel like I didn’t have the chance to learn much this year as I was very not-busy. Perhaps next year will be a good moment to have a change in this regard. I used my free time to study an online course about video games localisation and now I am doing a short course on digital marketing in Coursera, watching the lesson videos when the baby is asleep (on me).
We didn’t travel much these past months, but we managed to go to Malaysia at the beginning of my pregnancy and visited Kuala Lumpur and Melaka. It was nice to escape the cold for a few days, and we also met some friends there. My family came to Suzhou in October to meet the baby and stayed with us for a couple of weeks.
This year we added a new family member, but we also lost one: our beloved Nico passed away and left us very sad. Her ashes are now in the bookshelf next to her framed picture, while we decide what to do with them.
How was your 2018?