Happy Year of the Rat!

yearoftherat.jpgToday is Chinese New Year’s Day, which marks the beginning of the Year of the Rat. I was actually born in the Year of the Rat*, so I’m considering this year auspicious.

It has to be.

What I mean is that it has to be better than the past couple of months, and in particular last month. January was a bad month for me. It was a month in which the tendinitis in my arm got worse and not better, which meant no typing, which meant that not only did I turn down freelance work, I didn’t work on any of my own writing projects, and I watched as deadlines for contests, workshops, scholarship applications, etc. passed me by. I have been feeling pretty down about it, and even wondering if I needed to consider finding a new career that didn’t involve a computer. January was a month in which the doctor I was seeing about my arm offered no helpful solutions, and even got angry with me for asking about simple, noninvasive treatment options. January was a month in which I had a persistent toothache that turned out to be a cracked tooth. And at the end of January I got a nasty virus and bacterial infection which landed me on the couch, feverish, watching bad TV for a week. And all the while, it rained. We had nearly 20 rainy days last month, and two Fridays during which we received 3 inches of rain. Each.

You can see why I am eager to move on to February. And a new lunar year. I’m embracing anything that turns the page, so to speak. And so far, so good! (Well, aside from the parking ticket I got today. Ahem.) Today the sun shone! Today I saw a new doctor. I was worried about seeing him, as I’d been warned that though he was a good doctor, he was not friendly, possibly even rude, and rushed through appointments. He had a prickly blowfish in the aquarium in his waiting room that somehow reinforced my dread. But the doctor turned out to be nice enough, and he didn’t rush. He listened. And he gave me prescriptions for drugs I should have been prescribed three months ago. He was all about action and finding a way to get me working and writing again, which is the kind of doctor I have been looking for. He recommended acupuncture, too, and I left his office full of hope about my arm and the possibility that I might actually be able to handle sustained typing again at some point in the not too distant future.

In the mean time, it’s the Year of the Rat. Happy New Year!

* Ahem. People born in the Year of the Rat are (apparently):

noted for their charm and attraction for the opposite sex. They work hard to achieve their goals, acquire possessions, and are likely to be perfectionists. They are basically thrifty with money. Rat people are easily angered and love to gossip. Their ambitions are big, and they are usually very successful. They are most compatible with people born in the years of the Dragon, Monkey, and Ox.

There’s a slightly less rosy view of rats here. Want to know what sign you were born under? Look here.

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