Alright, so I am well aware that making a “this is what I learned this year, and this is what I hope to accomplish next year” post is cheesy, a bit basic and completely overdone. I know.
BUT…I’m not lactose intolerant, some of the best outfits are comprised of a variety of solid colored basics and Wendy Williams said (during a rerun episode I tuned into this afternoon) that it’s not about who’s done it before you; it’s about who does it better. And while I have no intention of creating a 2015 reflection post to rival anyone else’s…this is mine. There’s only one me, much like there’s only one you…and I’m doing it. SO, BOOM.
2015 has been my favorite year. Honestly. Like, I’m not just saying that. I like to think that, this year, I got brave. Did I figure it all out? Not a chance.
But I got closer, and I looked at myself. I saw myself for who I am, and I fell in love with this person. In love to the point of being able to truly mend some wounds, start tending to others and let the rest of them yield some growth. I was brave enough to let some things and people go, let some other things and people in, and wear alllllll of the fun/ridiculous outfits in the process. I did my best to sum up this beautiful, tough, ridiculous, fun year in a short list of lessons and sass, but know there aren’t enough words for the gratitude I have for the scars and moments and sunshine that I have been blessed with in the last 365 days. My goodness, not nearly enough.
BUT, I’mma try….
1. Sometimes losing a friend is the best thing that can happen for your weekends.
This year, someone I was proud to call a best friend called with a 45-minute explanation of why she didn’t want to be friends with me anymore. There were false accusations, mean words and underlying feelings that I truly didn’t know existed. My heart broke. I cried for hours (like, I actually popped a blood vessel and had a pink blob-shaped mark on my eye for weeks….ew….feel free to laugh). It hurt, but I’ll be real and say that losing this friend yielded a semester that was completely drama-free. I’ll be even more real and say, I had not had a drama-free semester since becoming friends with this person. I’m not going to sit here and tell you this girl is worstiest worst worst or that she sucks. She isn’t, and she doesn’t. If that were the case, I wouldn’t have held so tightly, tried so hard and given so much love and time to the relationship. But, honestly, that last sentence says it all. Friendship shouldn’t be a job, a chore or something that burdens your heart.
Friends are the family you choose, doll. Your best friends should be the people who make life easy, not clutter it up. No, no one is perfect. Yes, there will be tough seasons. But if there is someone close to you who constantly brings the drama, consistently looks for problems in you or is always findng things about you that they don’t vibe with- I think you should think about it. I really do. I wish I had been more critical about this relationship, but God brought it to me in a different way. And while I would have preferred a method that didn’t involve a temporary deformity to my face…I’m thankful. My weekends are too. They actually hate drama more than I do.
2…speaking of God. It's okay to own your faith.
I have been a “Christian” my whole life by default. My mom has always taken me to church. In middle school, I joined a student ministry. I have always believe in God. I have always gotten the gist about who Jesus is and the dope things he’s done and why I have to eat a little piece of bread that tastes like paper once a month. I have always kinda just gotten it and rolled with it. It wasn’t until college that I started building my own understanding and developing my own relationship. It wasn’t until college that I realized how wrong I had been doing it, and how ugly being a “Christian” looks when it’s done wrong….even with pretty Instagram filters and posts about mission trips. It wasn’t until THIS year, that I decided to explore my faith because I wanted to live it…not because I needed something or a boy hurt my feelings, but because my soul was hungry and I felt called to nurture it. And you can roll your eyes if you wanna. I wouldn’t blame you. I get it. I’ve seen what it is that would bring that kind of reaction. I’ve rolled mine too.
But here’s the thing…I’ve gotten lots of compliments this year. I’ve gotten so many ulplifting words about this blog and my heart and my clothes and spirit and blah. It’s very overwhelming, honestly. So much kindness is the best kind of overwhelming. I bring all of that up to say, the good parts of me are a product of my faith. The not-so-good parts (and they exist…in abundance) are being worked on and prayed about. And this year, I owned that. I will continue to own it because it has changed the whole entire game for me.
And as imperfect as I am, I want to share. This allegedly honest, self-exposing blog wouldn’t be genuine without it, so I will. It’s coming, and I am fighting my reluctance to talk about it.
3. It’s okay to fall in love…
With someone else and with yourself. In fact, I would recommend the latter before the first. Falling in love is scary, man. Scary scary stuff. It’s easy to love yourself when you look cute and life is going your way. It’s easy to love someone else on social media and whisper it when everything’s good. It really is. But deciding to love yourself, or someone else, is difficult because we simply aren’t always easy to love. People are not always easy to love. We fail, we look ugly sometimes. We lie, we cheat, we say things we shouldn’t. We get selfish and angry and messy. We do those things. We drink too much, fall too hard, and slip up. But accepting that none of those things makes us unworthy of love can be scary. Letting yourself fall into someone and accept that they have the ability to see you in all of those conditions and how badly it would hurt if they decided they couldn’t handle it is hard.
It is so hard. It gets harder every time someone walks away. But it is worth it. It is.
Love is stronger. It will win. I believe that. When it comes to falling in loving with yourself, I say.. now. Always. Forever.
In love with someone else? I say to let go of fear. Don’t be naïve, but fight your fears. If you fall, you will stand back up. If you fly, there are few things more beautiful. Either way, I highly recommend falling in love with yourself before you ever try to pour into someone else.
4.Understand your value. Understand where it comes from.
You are not an item on a shelf at Wal-Mart. No one came by with a machine gun thing to attach a value sticker to you. You are invaluable because you exist. You are here. You are the only you. Ever. Even on your worst day, there is no one who can fill your shoes the way you can. There is no one who breathes in air and experiences it the same way you do. You were valuable before anyone told you that you were. You were beautiful before there was a profile to get "likes" on. You were bright before there was any way for anyone to affirm that you are. This year, I had to teach myself that people aren’t here to become places for us to stock up points to create our value. A career is not a thing that will give us our meaning. We aren’t more or less because more or less people like us. We aren’t more likeable when we are in relationships. We aren’t prettier when someone puts us in their Twitter bae draft (for all of my non-Black Mizzou friends…yes, that was a thing and it was very funny.)
You are special becaue you are here, and the sooner you accept and understand that the better life will get. I promise.
5.Don’t be afraid to just “be”.
This year, it really hit me that I am not getting any younger. I really am not. And with graduation looming in May and a big girl job (fingers crossed) on the horizon, things are getting really real so very fast. It hit me this year that it’s just sorta time to decide the kind of human being I want to spend my life being and just go be her. Of course, time will bring changes. However, as far as my work ethic, relationships and dreams…I want my magic, and I want to claim it and go after it. There is no good future day to start.
It’s now. It’s every day.
There is actually something inspiring to see, taste or listen to every single day. There is actually something amazing and beautiful you can spend your time doing every single day- whether that be taking a mental health day in cozy pajamas with Netflix, taking shots with your best friends in a hot dress at a college bar or annotating the crap out of someone’s memoir cause it just talks to your soul.
This is life. We get one, and any time we spend sitting around complaining about having nothing to do and being bored is a waste. My mom always told me that only boring people get bored, and I used to roll my eyes at her. But now, I truly get it.
This year, I took my weave out and decided I like my natural hair best. I learned that I cannot stand tequila. I figured out that I like some healthy foods (thank GAWSH). I fell on my face and cried for too long. I ,then, got up and tried again. I figured it out (you will figure it out). I found my place in the field I want to go into (again, thank GAWSH…this tuition money wasn’t for nothing). I stopped being angry. I took the time to understand that people are people, and I am just a person. I bought clothes that don’t make sense but make me the happiest. I wore less makeup, then I wore way too much the next day. I skipped around New York City to brunch and parties hosted by rappers. I shivered through Denver and saw the most incredibly beautiful mountains. I floated in salty beach water in South Florida. I screamed and ate French fries at my last college football game where I saw the most beautiful Midwestern sunset. I fell head over heels in love with someone who knows me back and forth. I cut people off, let people in and accepted people for who they are instead of trying to hold them to my warped standards.
I lived. Imperfectly, but fully.
I could not be happier. My heart could not be more content.
So, that’s my piece for the year. That’s it.
My heart is warm as I sit in my cozy home with gold glitter nails and a homemade cocktail my mom just whipped up (proudly because it’s a new recipe….go BARB).
I hope your 2015 ends with glitter, love and light. I really do.
I am so beyond excited for 2016 and everything that it will bring. I hope you will come back and visit, and I hope even more that you’ll share your light with me.
Happy New Years Eve, dolls.
With Love & Glitter,