This year has been a tough one. And it’s not just me, every other person I talk to seems to have had a pretty challenging year. Maybe there was something in my horoscope in January that could have mentally prepared me for what was to come, but in all honesty, I don’t think anything could have prepared me for what 2018 threw at me. And in all fairness, if you had told me what was coming in 2018, I quite frankly wouldn’t have believed you.
It’s crazy how much your life can change in the space of a year. Rewind to December 2017 I had finished my first degree, things were getting serious with my boyfriend, I was working in client service and living with two mates. Not only has so much happened this year, but the Adelaide that sits here writing this post, is not the same Adelaide who walked into 2018, and is now striding into 2019.
2018 has shaped me in ways that I couldn’t have imagined. Despite every challenge encountered, I seriously wouldn’t change it for the world. I have learnt so much about myself and the world. I have grown stronger, more independent, more fearless and more ME! So I thought I would share with you some moments that shaped my year.
Thank u, next
Breakups suck. There’s really not too much more to that story to add that I haven’t already written. But what I can add is that whilst at the time it was a horrible experience of deceit, pain and betrayal, I have laid those feelings to rest. Holding onto negativity just poisons me, like a toxic chemical leaking into a pristine ocean (me being the pristine ocean of course). Yes, it takes time for the heart to heal and for forgiveness to flourish but it happens, even if it happens slowly.
And as much as I wish I wasn’t quoting Ariana Grande right now, I’m so fucking grateful for my ex, because if it didn’t end the way it did, I may have never met the completely undiscovered part of myself and my beautiful girlfriend Sophie.
I wanna girl
Surprised may be an understatement for how to describe my friend’s reaction to my enlightened sexuality. Some may call it coming out, other’s just call it finally being true to yourself. I wrote an article about my sexuality and my experience coming to terms with who I am, and I am still amazed by how well received that post was.
I’ve always been an open and honest person who enjoys sharing my life online. And Soph is absolutely no exception. If I’m allowed to give myself a pat on the back, I’m really proud of myself for accepting myself and being kind to myself throughout a process that can take months if not years to accept. It just goes to show that incredible things can happen when you give yourself a little love, and open yourself up to love as well. Soph, you are without a doubt the biggest highlight of 2018. You are my partner in crime and I seriously don’t want anyone else but you. I wanna girl and her name is Sophie.
Stupid little houses
Who knew that moving out of a house was the hardest part? This year I was involved in a 9 month battle to keep our bond. And like all traumatic things in my life, I wrote all about the ordeal. In all seriousness, this is one of the most stressful things I’ve ever experienced in my life. Everytime I thought about the situation my body would flood with stress, nerves and anxiety, concocting a toxic bubble in my gut. I hated that I had to go through this and I often found myself asking, ‘why me?’
But like many things in life, you can’t always control the situation, and you have to give in to the fact that shit things happen. Despite the pain of this experience, I learnt soooo much! I learnt that there are bad, greedy and selfish people in the world who will stop at nothing to bring you down. I learnt that organisation is key! I learnt what my values really are, realizing I value my time and wellbeing way more than money. And I learnt that friends and family are your most important support system.
Work work work…
This year I completed my Honours thesis in International Studies. I graduated with Class 2, Division 1 Honours and received an 85 for my thesis. I am so proud of myself. And considering that I worked 4 days a week in a new job in my field of study (communications and media), I can do it all.
Completing Honours was something I was always a bit unsure about. I thought it was reserved to those crazy high achievers and honestly just thought I couldn’t accomplish such a mammoth task. I am so grateful that my supervisor believed in me and pushed me to achieve completing my Honours degree. I was also very fortunate to go through the works of Honours with my friend Jack.
By completing Honours, I not only learnt so much about the actual topic I was researching (‘Illegal’ immigrants in the US), but I learnt about my work ethic, my determination to not only make my supervisor proud, but make myself proud, and to believe in myself and my ability without comparing myself to others. Far out I learnt a lot through degree number 3!
I know that everyone goes through phases of comparing themselves to others, but this year I’ve found myself comparing myself to who I think I should be. Is it just me, or do other people experience this too? I guess when I was a little girl I used to think about my life and what I would do, besides the whole stereotypical, ‘get married, have kids, become an expert baker.’ I think it’s important to have high standards and high expectations of yourself, but not to the point that it’s making you upset or unsatisfied with what you have!
That’s where gratitude and mindfulness come in. If you couldn’t already tell, this year has been a little insane and one of the ways I’ve managed to get through it all is to be bloody thankful and take a deep breath. We are so lucky to live this life. Everything else is a bonus. If someone makes you happy, spend more time with them. If someone makes you feel worthless or stressed, take a step away from them. If your job gives you satisfaction, stop scrolling for jobs on SEEK. If your house feels safe, secure and like home, stop looking over your neighbours fence. And of course, never believe anything you see on Instagram.
I’ve learnt this year that life is what it is and your life is no one else’s responsibility but yours. You are in control of your happiness, your fate, your income, your wellbeing and your passion. Don’t you dare ever take that for granted.
2019… the year of…
Hindsight is a blessing. It is only now that I can say, ‘Wow, 2018 was the year of challenges and change (and chics).’ Moving in to 2019 I am incredibly optimistic. With my studies over and more time to focus on my savings, my blog, my creativity, my relationships and my sense of adventure, I promise to seize each opportunity with excitement and enthusiasm.
Who knows where I will end up in a years time. But I can promise you that I will be happy, I will be brave and I will be stronger than ever.