Looking Back on 2013

I am currently writing my annual resolutions post. Often, resolutions blog posts make me feel really frustrated with what I haven’t yet accomplished. They’re rarely things like “Continue to be awesome!” or “Keep being perfect!”

Even though this was another admittedly difficult year, I am more than aware of how many wonderful things happened this year.

So, without further ado, a quick little rundown of the things I accomplished this year that made me happy and/or proud:

  • I took a voice class
  • I played intramural basketball
  • I had an A+ in a biology class, if only for a brief moment
  • I produced, directed, and starred in a short film for class
  • I graduated college
    Stone and I on graduation day
  • I watched my brother graduate high school
  • I quit being pre-med
  • I saw Saturn
  • I started getting help
  • I began blogging more regularly
    • I made new friends as a result
  • I had my wisdom teeth removed
  • I got a smartphone whoa
  • I became Yelp Elite
    Embedded image permalink
  • I went to Europe, where I was able to check off bucket list places like:
    • London
      • I took my first-ever bike tour

        Helmet = ready!
        Helmet = ready!
    • Paris
    • Berlin
    • St. Petersburg
      • I learned that I should not be THAT scared of vodka

        Coming soon in my St. Petersburg posts!
        Coming soon in my St. Petersburg posts!
    • Copenhagen
    • Helsinki
    • Stockholm
    • Tallinn
  • I experienced a cruise ship for the first time

    2013-08-03 20.09.32
    The views were unreal.
  • I sang karaoke in front of strangers
  • I attended the Maryland Crab & Beer Festival
    2013-08-17 17.50.59
  • I attended two free, very different, movie screenings and thoroughly enjoyed them both
  • I finally walked along the Brooklyn Bridge
    2013-09-28 16.01.40
  • I ran my first-ever 5K (and lived!)
    My first time wearing numbers pinned to my shirt?
  • I attended my first-ever real concert

  • I took a ballet class

    My ballet classmates, instructor, and myself on the right.
    My ballet classmates, instructor, and myself on the right.
  • I met Buzz Aldrin

    Getting a signed book (and a compliment!) from Buzz Aldrin
    Getting a signed book (and a compliment!) from Buzz Aldrin
  • I sort of met Ice Cube

    Yeah, I could've touched him, no big deal.
    Yeah, I could’ve touched him, no big deal.

I had my Snow White costume featured on the Disneybound blog

Thank you Brittany for this screenshot!
Thank you Brittany for this screenshot!
  • I visited the Wall Street bull for the first time


All in all, I was so incredibly fortunate to have all of these experiences and more this year. I’m happy to have been able to experience these wonderful things and that I was able to share almost all of them here with my small bunch of readers.

I think that 2013, with its extreme ups and extreme downs, has made me a better person than I was in 2012. I’ve become more of a person of action. Mind you, I still have a long ways to go with this, but I didn’t say no to as many opportunities that I wanted so badly to say yes to. Resume vocal training? No more talking about it, time to register for a class and sing. Take up ballet again? Oh, maybe I could… or maybe I’ll just register for a class and dance.

I tried to not just talk about doing things with the false air of being too busy to actually do them. In truth, I was, and often am, too embarrassed to do things, Singing in front of complete strangers without a spotlight blinding me to their presence? Biking around a city that I don’t know? Paying MONEY to RUN even though I am slow and have poor endurance?

What’s more is that many of these experiences are actually the result of my own agency. Yes, my dad booked us for the bike tour, but I’m the one who called it to his attention and suggested it. He bought my tickets to The Nutcracker but only because he knew how badly I wanted to see it. (So badly that I was actually vocal about it, instead of willing people with my non-existent psychic powers to know.)

I am proud of myself for many of the things I accomplished, but maybe I’m most proud that I acted on things I wanted to do. Instead of “Oh, I wish I could do this…” I actually got up and did. I feel empowered by my newfound sense of agency.

This is what assures me that I will be a better person in 2014.
This is why I am grateful for 2013.