I am sitting out on my front porch in 18 degree weather with the wind blowing typing this just so I can focus enough to finish this blog post for you wonderful readers. I love you and thank you for your support this past year. You keep me going.
At the end of every year we look back and reflect on the experiences we’ve had, both good and bad. We evaluate who we are compared to who we were a year ago. We find ourselves either content with our progress or disappointed in our lack thereof. Maybe you completed your resolutions for the year. Maybe you gave up on them after a month. Either way, you are surely not the same person who you were before and you will never be that person again.
At first, this is a fairly grim and sad thought. I can never go back to the person I was, I can only go forward. That. That is the idea of New Years though. You get a fresh start to change who you are and once that clock strikes midnight, besides a starting point, your past is just that. It is a memory to be bottled up and only reopened down the road when you reflect internally. Maybe this is a bit idealistic, but I’d like to think it’s a good thing that I won’t be the same person I was a year ago. As much as I was proud of the growth from the year before, that person was a bit of a wuss. So, in the nature of New Year’s Eve, here’s my reflection of the past year.
This year I became a person I was proud of.
I started my year off crying because my leg buckled out from underneath me not three minutes after the new year started. This year, I learned to suck it up and get the hell over it. I can’t keep trying to change things beyond my control. I should simply be proud that I started medications to help regulate my pain, and I managed to transition from walking with crutches and a knee brace to a cane and a knee brace. That is more than I thought I’d achieve for a long time. It may not have been easy, but I did my best and that’s all anyone can expect.
Furthermore, I completed one of my most difficult resolutions this past year–figure out what I want and stop giving it up for other people. I started going to the movies alone. I went to the library to get books when I wanted to read. If I didn’t want to go out, I wasn’t guilted into going anyways. I realized who was important in my life. I stopped being around people who were constantly toxic for me. This year, I thought about myself for a change and I couldn’t be happier. I know now that it’s not selfish to take care of yourself first.
I took steps to improve my mental health. I started talking to a support group online and I started on medications for my mental disorders. I have found myself more authentic and much nicer to be around. I also learned that I can lean on the people who care about me when I’m having a difficult time with my depression and anxiety.
One of the biggest changes from this past year was my courage. I stopped making excuses and being scared in my relationship. I put all my cards on the table, put myself out there. The more vulnerable I got with Patrick, the safer I felt. It took us far from where we were. Finally, the last time he came to visit me I took a huge step. I proposed in the middle of the Denver International Airport while singing in front of a crowd with my family and friends dressed up in Halloween costumes. I gave a grandiose speech (which only turned out to be a couple of sentences since I was so nervous) and I asked him to marry me. He said YES!
Finally, I just let myself have a ton of fun this year and I have zero regrets. I completed twelve more items on my bucket list. That’s 12 percent of the list! Here’s what I did this year if anyone else is keeping tabs:
- Spend Valentine’s Day with someone
- Create my own recipe and write it down
- Celebrate Mardi Gras
- Slow dance to no music
- Kiss under the mistletoe
- Watch the sunrise and sunset in 1 day
- Go to Comic Con
- Tie a message to a balloon and let go
- Watch all the Harry Potter movies in 1 day
- Give a TED Talk
- Take Patrick to the Rocky Horror Picture Show
- Visit New Orleans
So, on that note, I will leave you with something happy to think about. I am determined to make this year great. Your year, no matter how productive or not, is going to be a blessing. You will face trials and you will find yourself taking strides in new directions. Make this year a great one and I will write again soon! ❤