Like every other year, this year was full of ups and downs. But for the first time in a very long time, I have to say that this year had more happiness than ever. In the midst of trying to figure out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, the blood sweat and tears, the stress of school and work, the worries of money, financial aid, grades and my future, I learned a lot of life lessons. One of those lessons was to be happy with the life I’m living. I learned to stop searching for happiness and just find comfort and happiness in the things that I have in the now. I learned to not take any shit from anyone. If there is someone who makes you feel less than you truly are, ditch them. Only associate yourself with people who add positivity to your life. I learned to deal with stubborn, rude and inconsiderate people. I learned who my true friends are. I learned that my crazy, stubborn and loud family is the most important thing in the world to me. I learned that school isn’t about grades; it’s about expanding your knowledge and learning. I learned that some men just aren’t worth the pain and tears. I learned that if you park in the PCC parking lot, your car doors will be dinged and scratched to all hell. I learned to never leave my car doors unlocked or my windows down (learned that one the hard way). I learned that I can be strong when I have to be. I learned that I really, really like to take care of people. I learned how to take care and heal myself through health and fitness. I’m so amazed at how far I’ve come in my wellness journey and I’ve reached goals and broke through barriers I never thought possible. And most importantly, I learned that who I’ve wanted to be turned out to be exactly who I am today.
For the longest time, I was searching for the true me. It was an endless cycle of feeling lost and confused. I didn’t know where I belonged and I sure as hell had no clue who I wanted to be. But then I looked around at the people surrounding me and I knew exactly who I wanted to be.
Mom: I want to be someone who is totally selfless. I want to be someone who can forgive. I want to be someone who loves unconditionally and who would give up everything for the people she loves.
Dad: I want to be someone who is strong. I want to be someone who works their ass off to support their family. I want to be someone who supports the one’s they love 100%.
Jess: I want to be someone who is content with simplicity. I want to be someone who can just go with the flow. I want to be someone who isn’t afraid to follow their dreams.
Shane: I want to be someone who loves everyone. I want to be someone who has an open mind. I want to be someone who is caring and compassionate. I want to be someone who can face their fears head on.
My whole life, I just wanted to be a good person. I wanted to be honest, caring, strong, smart, selfless and light hearted. Over this past year, I stopped wanting to be that person and actually became her. I love who I am. I love who I’ve become. All the challenges I’ve faced this year have turned me into the woman I am today. I still have a lot of life lessons to learn and I’m sure I have many challenges coming my way but I know how to face them now and I’m no longer afraid. I think one of the greatest challenges I’ve faced this year was learning to love myself. Once I learned to love myself, it was like the gates of happiness opened up. I used to hate compliments because I didn’t believe them. I used to never call myself beautiful. I would look at myself and criticize everything about me. One day, I got fed up of the negativity and depression and looked in the mirror and said “you are beautiful.” And not in the “oh my god, I’m so hot” kind of way. I believed I was beautiful on the inside and to me, that’s all that matters. I’ve worked in a nursing home long enough to know that outward beauty doesn’t last long, but inner beauty shines through. It’s so powerful that those old, wrinkly, gray haired men and women are absolutely beautiful to me. I know who I am now, I know where I’m going and I know exactly where I want to be and to me, that’s the most beautiful thing in the world. I’m so excited about this New Year and I can’t wait to see how far I can push myself with my fitness and new found self-love. I hope everyone has a safe and Happy New year!