In January, 2010, I decided that I'd had enough.


I was tired of my life. I was still lugging around post-baby weight from my daughter, Amelia. I was still lugging around the emotional baggage from her traumatic birth, and I'd realized that I'd made a grave error: in becoming a mother and a wife, I'd lost myself.

That wasn't okay. Who I had become wasn't enough for me any more.

The only one who was going to unearth me from the piles of dirty diapers was me.

So I launched Bringing (aunt) Becky Back (I cannot, have not, and will NEVER call it any form of "self-improvement," because that term makes me twitchy and vomity inside).

It was probably one of the most painful things I've ever had to do. I've snotted up more tissues, cried on more shoulders, and spent more nights awake and alone. I've lost my oldest friends. I've had to reevaluate every single one of my relationships. I've learned a lot about what I stand for and what I will not. These are not easy things to do.

It's not been all self-flagellation and feeling Debbie Downer, though. I'm learning to love myself. I've learned that I matter just as much as everyone else. My happiness isn't a selfish thing and denying myself that chance to be happy, that's what's truly selfish. So I've stopped denying myself. I take time for my orchids and my roses because when I do, they make me smile. I buy myself clothes to feel pretty. I get my hairs did. I write.

But I have a long way to go.

This is Year Two of the Bringing Aunt Becky Back Project and this time? You're INVITED. Get ready TO ROCK.


This isn't some weird kind of New Year's Resolution trick because you know what I think of New Year's Resolutions?

That about sums it up.

It's a New Year's REV-oltion. It's time to take a hard look at the things in your life that you want to change and finding the small things you can change. I hate it when people get all "IMMA BECOME PRESIDENT THIS YEAR! THIS IS GONNA BE MY YEAR!" and you're like, "Dude, you sound like the kid with no voice on American Idol that the producers threw in there to make the rest of the world laugh."

I don't want to be that kid, Pranksters.

So, this year, like last, for the BB2G: Bringing The Happy Back World Tour, I'm going to aim for the small things. Flavored coffee. More orchids. A new coat of paint in my bedroom. More time being still. Reading alone. Taking a bath. Doing silly things just to do them. (Also: therapy. Lots of therapy)

This year, I'm in search of My Happy. Too many years of The Sad have made it hard for me to smile as easily as I used to. It's time to find My Happy.

So bring it, 2011. And join me in the BB2G: Bringing The Happy Back World Tour, Pranksters. In this space or your own. I've blackmailed the other editors to join me in BB2G: Bringing The Happy Back, so we'll ALL be chronicling the small things we do throughout the year to find our Happy. Even The Sads we meet along the way. I know there will be plenty of those, too.

I can't wait. I'm going to find My Happy if I have to beat it out you, 2011.