1. Mom having her kidney transplant. While it isn’t my milestone it impacted our entire family. We took on a lot more responsibilities. I know I felt a lot more grown up than my actual age of 14.
2. Turning 18. It’s when you are legally recognized as an adult.
3. When Janet and I went on vacation for the first time by ourselves. We were 20 so it wasn’t as if we weren’t adults but there was a sense of independence about it. We did go with a tour company so we were well looked after. It was a significant event at the time because we got to meet our favourite soap star…or should I say MY favourite soap star.
4. Turning 30. I know Janet and I both felt the same way that there was something different about your twenties than 30s. For women there are expectations that you are supposed to be married and have children at that age. Turning 40 was hard because it was my first milestone without my twin. I put a poem in the paper as a tribute for our birthday and that would have been a significant event because I was putting my writing somewhere where other people were going to read it. Even though I was 40 at the time people from church thought Mom did it.
5. Going to Vancouver. I didn’t realize how big of a deal this was until years later. It took a lot of courage to go and stay with something I hadn’t seen for almost 20 years. I went on vacation less than a year after Janet died at a time when I was really lost.
6. Getting internet at home. I know it doesn’t seem like a big deal but it was something I did entirely on my own.
7. When I went to Minneapolis for the Twinless Twins conference in one of the workshops we went around the circle and told something about ourselves as an ice breaker. The thing I shared was that I had my first plane ride by myself going there.
8. In 2016 it was 10 years since Janet died. I remember thinking how did I make it through 10 years without her? That September was also the 1 year anniversary of my Mom’s death. Planning an event completely on my own (made harder when I had to tell the event coordinator that I didn’t have any family)
9. Moving to my apartment. The word yesterday was reduce and moving is the only time when we go through everything we own (or in my case what family members owned too) and figure out what we want to keep and what we no longer need. When I first started I would pick up an object and just sob. While my head knew it was time my heart wasn’t ready. After Mom died it was a little bit easier because the house just felt so empty.
10. The other day I posted pictures on indulgences. That in itself if a milestone because I had to get to a point where I could tell myself I was worth it. When I went to the Dr a year ago I had a good report. It’s huge because being a caregiver I wasn’t able to take care of myself as well as I knew I should have. It meant things were improving. This Dr has also commented that I seem happier. We have to acknowledge our little accomplishments.

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