The best and worst of 2011

Christmas was barely done when the media began rating 2011.  Best movie of 2011, best health news of 2011, best business moment, best style trend … you name it, there’s a list.  This was pretty much what inspired my survey this week – the one I post every Tuesday on my Facebook page.  “My 2011?” it read.  “I’d give it a 9 out of 10.  SPEEDY BD SURVEY #85 asks, how about you?  What’s your rating for 2011?”

I posted it, as always, shortly before six am, and, as always, within minutes the first responses came in.  The very first one gave me pause. “Bad year for me.  #3,” it said, and of the initial six, two others were as low.

Reading them, I felt like an insensitive clod.  Oh yes, I’ve had bad moments this year.  But compared to so many other Americans – so many others globally – I am very lucky.

I considered deleting the survey.

Rather than do that, though, I offer this blog to explain why I gave 2011 a 9.  Those bad moments this year for me?  They run the gamut from health to family to writing, but I can’t dwell on them.  S**t happens.  But the good of 2011 is way more important to me.  A new grandchild, a new book, a new publisher – special times with friends, special times with family – a meeting last June with the UPLIFT fellows, a fabulous breast cancer event in Houston, great knitting – I could go on, but you get the point.

Bottom line?  I gave 2011 a 9 because I need to see the glass as half full.  It’s been like this for me since I was eight, when my mother died.  Though I was too young to analyze it at the time, as I grew I realized that her death was an opportunity for me to become independent and self-sufficient, which is probably why I dared to write my very first book, and you know the outcome of that.

Opportunity.  That word is something of a credo for me.  I believe that even when the worst happens, there has to be a silver lining.  So for those of you whose 2011s were lousy, please look for that silver lining in 2012.  And know how deeply I treasure your readership and how fervently I’ll be cheering you on.

To all of you, I wish the very, very best 2012!

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  1. Emma Leigh Reed on December 29, 2011 at 6:35 am

    2011 was a year of ups and downs for me also, but I would definitely give it a high rating. There was a new contract signed, a new grandson, my oldest daughter moving away (which is a plus and a minus). All these definitely outweighed my husband having a stroke and other minor bumps in the road of life. What a great post to encourage us to look at life in a positive manner instead of letting the negative keep you down.

  2. Wanda Litsky on December 29, 2011 at 7:54 am

    Life is good . The alternative sucks. Tough 3 months with my husbands illness but He is now better than ever. G-d has been very good to us.. We are grateful for our children(3.) with spouse total six. Five grandchildren. And all are healthy.. Have a wonderful Healthy, Happy, Prosperous year.Keep that cup full this year……Love Wanda xoxo

  3. Jan Fortuno on December 29, 2011 at 8:02 am

    I would rate this year a solid 9. We lost our house due to the ecomomy but ended up living in a much better place. Both my husband and I have jobs, I recently transferred to the Emergency Room and love the insanity of it. Our grandson (21 months) is very healthy and extremely happy. He is talking and lights up our life. I survived pneumonia recently and did not loose my job. We are surrounded by loving friends and family.

  4. Pat Puckett on December 29, 2011 at 8:52 am

    Can’t imagine losing your Mom at 8 years old. I’m sure she is looking down on you with such love and pride at your wonderful accomplishments. You are an inspiration to many. I am so blessed to have what I have, especially when so many are struggling today just to get by. Our family suffered through many obstacles in 2011, but we overcame them, and the highlight of 2011 was the birth of our beautiful new granddaughter. Wishing you and your family a safe, healthy and happy new year!

  5. Michele Phoenix on December 29, 2011 at 10:22 am

    2011. The threat of my third cancer in three years. Surgery. Hellish side-effects, but an all-clear from my oncologist. A trans-Atlantic move back to this country. New friends. New passions. New discoveries. New dreams. And not one but two novels purchased for publication by Tyndale House. You, Barbara, have inspired me for so long in your journey through cancer and your commitment to the human spirit. 2011, as ominously as it started, became a year of writing and survival for me. I’m calling it my Delinsky year.

    • Barbara Delinsky on January 4, 2012 at 9:44 am

      Thank you, Michele. I’m honored! Here’s to a healthier 2012!

  6. Joyce Brown on December 29, 2011 at 11:22 am

    Thanks Barbara for turning my sight around to that silver lining….you are so right!!! Circumstances change every day, but the constants in your life are always there for you….family and friends and breathing and health……they make our life the best!!!!! Yes therefore 2011 was a good year and I am confident 2012 will be also!

  7. Brandi on December 29, 2011 at 11:39 am

    Wow, I am so glad that you wrote this for today’s blog!! I was talking to my Mom after reading what others had put as their answer to your weekly survey question, I said I would give my year an 8 out of 10. I am like you and always try to see the silver lining and most importantly my parents always said that’s its better for the glass to be half full then half empty!! There have been a few bad moments in my year but the good by far outweighs the bad. My husband and I are going to church and Bible study so we are on a great track in our marriage so that right there is most important to me. Thank you Barbara =)

  8. Kathleen O'Donnell on December 29, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    2011 for me was a 5 out of 10. My mother died this year. Nothing worse could have happened after that. She was sick and it was a blessing she was out of her pain. But it left many people with a deep hole inside them. Other people close ot me lost husbands, sisters, brothers and parents this year and people I love and care about got the dreaded “C” diaganosed this year.. So althought there were some good times I think the bad ruled…

    Wishing you the very best for 2012.
    Happy New Year

  9. Becky on December 29, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    That was so sweet of you. I was one with the low number. You brightened my day by your upbeat attitude. Thanks so much

  10. Jennifer on December 29, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    I was glad that you did not delete survey, I too was one of the first to reply, a 6 out of 10. I am happy to say that I would like to modify my answer to an 8 because of a phone call from the bank last night. The bank approved our loan modification so I am actually ending the year on a positive note.

    I wish for good things to come in 2012 for you and everyone who has commented on your blog.

  11. Shirley Helm on December 30, 2011 at 8:39 am

    I had a wonderful year in 2011. Nothing special, just being alive and being healthy. I have a wonderful man in my life who cares for me, 2 healthy daughters and 2 healthy granddaughters. What more can you ask for? And in my stocking this Christmas was a copy of “Escape”.
    Best of everthing in 2012 to you Barbara.

    • Susan Edmondson on January 3, 2012 at 8:33 pm

      Is Helm your original name? Are you from Terre Haute, IN? If so…please write. If not, have a great life in 2010 and every year anyway!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

  12. Connie Moser on January 1, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    i am also glad u didn’t delete the survery! my 2010 at christmas started out with my late husband passing due to the Big C…he suffered the worse 16 days but he is also out of pain…2011! i was ready to go with him but on June 12th a long lost love came back into my the short a trip home to PA, to bring him back to FL with me, and we were married on aug 6, 2011 let me tell u all the second time around is so awesome! he is 19 years old them me, he will probably go b4 me but we have a pack we are going to go together..coz both have said we will not loose each other again! so my 2011 was good and my 2012 is going to be even better… i also learned one big thing through all of this…i don’t need to have negative people in my life…i have my own business Hairdresser and i have even got rid of the ladies that are so negative in life! i don’t and won’t listen to it anymore! i refuse! so barbara don’t listen to the negative people on your sites! it works also, my new husband and i don’t listen to the news either…i have not watched the news since june 2011 and what a wonderful life now..the stress level has lessoned so much from that too…IT WORKS FOLKS! turn that stuff off…life will go one for sure! happy new year girls!

  13. Sue Brown on January 2, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    I would have to say that 2011 was probably 9 out of 10!

    I’m blessed to have a wonderful husband to share my life with, we’ve been together for over twenty years, it’s a second marriage for both and we always ensure that we laugh each and everyday and try never to take each other or for that matter life for granted.
    I have an incredible daughter that I am so proud of, who I am lucky enough to call my best friend.
    She is now married to great guy and 2011 brought them their first new home.
    I design greeting cards in my spare time, which gives me a great deal of personal satisfaction and was lucky to enjoy a great deal of success this past year with this venture, which brought me great joy, but also long hours of hard work.

    But along with the all the wonderful moments of 2011, there were some times throughout the year that were a 5 or 6, there were some hardships, losses, issues with family members ~ but when you add up all the months, I still feel we were very lucky!

    Barbara ~ You are an inspiration and have loved reading your novels for years, you are by far one of my favorite authors.

    Wishing everyone a healthy New Year and hope it’s filled with wonderful moments and memories!

  14. Susan Edmondson on January 3, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    2011 was another year of good and bad. LIfe is like that! I have a boyfriend now who tends to be very cynical and negative. I am not. Well – Christmas Eve, one last trip to Dollar Tree, saw a mug with happy messages, such as Celebrate life. Got it for him and told him he was to drink his coffee from it every morning! Maybe he is – he seems happier! It takes too much energy to complain about things we can ‘t do anything about. Such as – Live in Indiana – it’s going to be very hot, it’s going to snow, etc. Dress for it and go on! Although my mom broke her hip on Christmas day, her femur on New Year’s Eve (at 81, her dementia doesn’t allow her to remember that she can’t get up by herself), I will hold on to the memory of her and her boyfriend (also 81, they met at the senior living place) singing along with Mitch Miller and the Band and me as we drove to and from the family gathering for Christmas. It was so sweet! And we have a new book to read by Barbara – 2012 is a GREAT year already!!!!

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