Looking Back on 21

Today marks the last of an exciting 365 days traveling around the sun.

When I look back at the past year, I feel pleased with accomplishments in my relationships, my academics, and my personal growth.

In short:

  • I have spent a great deal of time on introspection regarding my personal life, my future professional life, and my values at this time in my life in an effort to guide myself in a direction after graduation. It has not led me to an answer so far, but it has led me to speak with new people and form new friendships and think in new ways as a result of my willingness to reach out and do one thing that I love – connecting with others.
  • My health has continued to be a focus as I fluctuate in exercise motivation, green smoothie inspiration, and periods of moderate sleep deprivation. While I am not always in a physically balanced place, I have been thoughtful about my health a great deal and have enjoyed engaging with it in different ways.
  • For almost one entire year I maintained a long-distance friendship! I think this resulted from the point in my life that G made her way across the globe – I’ve reached a point of personal development where I could manage that sort of geographical distance in a relationship.
  • Opportunities to step outside of my comfort zone presented themselves, then disappeared, then were taken up and taken away, and eventually left me living away from home (if only a short distance) for the first time this summer, and I feel that decision has made me appreciate home in a new way while also offering me an unforgettable summer so far. My new job and new friends (along with a handful of oldies) are a big part of that. Dancing like my life depends on it every couple of weeks has also been surprisingly rejuvenating.
  • My new studies in gender, race, sexuality and social justice at school have refined and informed many values and passions I had before but did not have words or literature to use in tandem with them. While it has been challenging at times, I have thoroughly enjoyed being able to partake in aspects of the GRSJ culture at my school and using that education to inform other parts of my life that I feel are bettered as a result.
  • I lost two figures in my life that are incredibly painful to be without now, but I’m glad they went together and that whatever discomforts they were experiencing are gone now. They are missed immensely, but the sadness I feel reminds me that I do feel, and that these lows will contrast future highs and make them all the better.
I think that 22 will be an incredibly confusing, exciting, terrifying, and fulfilling trip around the sun. Even if it has the lowest of lows, I also believe it will have some of the highest highs, and I am looking forward to seeing what they all are.
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