It was an incredibly lonely and sad Christmas. This holiday season seemed to perfectly characterize what’s been ultimately one of the toughest years I’ve ever had; consider it the final “screw you” cherry on top of my 2015.
I know I’m not alone in feeling like that. (This is a great read for the lonely holiday season blues.)
As I always strive to keep things real ’round these parts, I don’t share justÂ the pretty-pretty-Princess perfect parts. You can lead an awesome life and, at the same time, still grapple with some very real, very difficultÂ and life-changingÂ events.
My most recent trip changed me for the better, it was exactly what I needed and I truly cannot wait to share what a fantastic experience it was. I’m so grateful that I was able to do just what my soul needed. More grateful than ever, really.
Like life, though, my year wasn’t filled with just smiling pictures on top of the world at Victoria Peak in Hong Kong. It was an eclectic mix of good and, sadly, a lot of bad.
2015 changed me.Â
It taught me a lot. I’m going to choose to focus on that in this 2015 roundup.
I buckled down and busted ass. When the going got tough, I focused onÂ rebranding this siteÂ and the necessary changes to make that happen.Â Â And baby Jesus, it worked out. 2015 was the best year so far for this site! I’m incredibly thankful for your likes, shares and readership.
I discovered the release of not giving a damn. As things slowly but surely happened to me (not because of me) and were beyond my control, I had to let go. I decided to step off that rollercoaster and wave, with fingers crossed, that things would work out on the way down.
I made my hobbies a bigger priority. Photography classes, running books, copywriting seminars – you name it, I probably dove head first into learning more. It’s something I’ll continue to do because I absolutely improved in all areas.
I’m a bit more jaded than I’d like.Â I’ve noticed myself shut down and pull away moreÂ when I’m scared to share just how bad things were. That’s usually not me. I tend to find that friends can relate to me because I share the good with the bad. Maybe that’s just how bad it got; I was done sharing? It’s something I need to work through currently.
I pushed past comfort zones. Landing in Sydney, Australia and Hong Kong on my own, knowing no one would be there, was both exhilarating and terrifying. A perfect mix of pushing through comfort (and time) zones.
I checked my emotions at the door. My work as a senior copywriter became somewhat of an outlet this year, albeit really stressful at times, but it was a blessing in disguise to take a breather from…emotions.
I’m more humble and grateful. Having a rough go of it makes you realize how judgmental you may have been of others. I’m more grateful than ever for my ability to travel and quite simply, run. Physically run. I’m so thankful for my health. Feeling alone, especially around the holidays, also made me appreciate the support of those who truly get it, who reached out, who asked, “But what about you? How are you doing with all this?”
I need to make myself more vulnerable. When I give the low down, I often finish it with, “But it will be okay.” Truth: It will. Feelings: Sure doesn’t feel like it…and that’s okay. I need to tellÂ loved ones more openly that I need their support. It’s okay to want to be fussed over every once and awhile. And in my often shuffled-to-the-back world, it’s okay to want to be cared about.
I’m a tough cookie. If I can get through this year smiling, which I surely have, then I know I’m tough as nails. See above to see how that can work against you though.
I’m more passionate than ever about exploring the world. After canceling our Southeast Asia trip and then going to Hong Kong alone, I know just what feeds my soul. Cultures. Humanity. Art. Locals. Music. …Travel.
I won’t apologize for being myself. Mind-numbingly replaying what I could have said or did, plays less of a role in my life now. As hard as it may be, I won’t beg for someoneÂ to like me and treat me with the care that I treat them. If you don’t like me or consistently treat me like a second choice? Cool. I wish you well, dear soul.
TheÂ pressure-filled weight of the world is toughÂ and your struggles are just as important as the next person’s. You never truly know what someone else is going through. While I firmly believe I’m a mother fuckingÂ rockstar…this year proved my strengths and asked me to work on my weaknesses.
So I may be screaming to the moon on New Years Eve, “PEACE OUT, 2015!”
But what I really mean is, thank you.
I humbly say, “Thank you, 2015. You are a year I will never forget.”
Now, BRING IT ON 2016!
A note to you: Thank you to making this year in blogging so fulfilling. I hope you’ve enjoyed the ride and have taken something from it or at the very least had a good laugh. I wish you nothing but health and happiness (that you may have to work for…) in 2016. I look forward to sharing more adventure with you! There are tons!