Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve started receiving Christmas cards from friends and family, those personal ones that walk you through the year or that have pictures of whatever that person did during the last 12 months.
I’ve really enjoy receiving these notes — they make me feel connected to the people I care about who are far away. They make me reflect on the last year in my own life
They also make me think about how terrible I would be at doing something similar. Also about how I don’t have the kind of extra money to pay for that much postage.
But I like the sentiment, the idea of staying connected and letting people know what’s going on in my world. I’m also, as always, into being excessively introspective, and as overdone as it feels, the New Year does provide a convenient time for reflection.
Because when I think about it, 2014 really was an eventful year. And while it’s been a year of huge transition and uncertainty and excitement and feelings and everything else in between, I suppose, in the end, it was a year worth remembering.
So, what exactly did I do in 2014?
- I survived my last semester of college, which included publishing a massive story for the Columbia Missourian, mentoring a group of education reporters through my TA job as an assistant city editor, becoming very good at writing sunshine requests and — to prove I didn’t only do journalism things — writing a 16 page memoir for an English class.
- I spent a week in Honduras, where I helped build houses and pour concrete and hung out with kids.
- I also sprained my ankle on said Honduras trip, which resulted in several weeks of walking around campus in a boot and ankle brace.
- I beat 2048. This is a real accomplishment, people.
- I freaking graduated from college.
- I made an obscene number of casseroles in an attempt to both prove my adulthood and to only cook once a week.
- I moved away from the people I had lived and shared life with for four years.
- I spent the summer living in Kansas City, where I wrote for a metro-daily newspaper, played way too many games of Five Crowns and learned the pronunciation of quinoa.
- I went to Royals games when it was cool to go to Royals games.
- I helped cover a presidential speech. Yes, I still have my “White House press pool” badge.
- I got a real, full-time job, resulting in excessive celebration for weeks on end.
- I moved to Joplin, Missouri, for said job.
- I stood beside two of my best friends during their respective weddings.
- I bought a lot of kitchenware.
- I learned a heck of a lot about wastewater treatment.
- I became a master of meatloaf making.
- I started finding a new community.
- I cried. A lot.
- But, in conjunction with the previous statement, I also learned a lot. I find that the two tend to go together.
- I learned, again and again, the lessons I learn a little more clearly every year: to have more grace with myself, to receive love from other people, to ask for help when I need it.
So come what may, here’s to 2015.