I’ve made it another year around the sun. It isn’t a crazy thought, but I’ve had such a great year. The crazy thought is that it will continue to get better, year after year.
It seems like such good fortune that I’m on track to have everything I want from life; I have so much love in my life, from my family to my loyal and lovely boyfriend. Getting a Masters in Creative Writing has been my goal since middle school. The cherry on top is my dog Damian, of course.
Since my word for 2023 is relax (I’m still working on it), instead of setting goals and intentions for this coming year, this blog post is going to highlight five things that happened that made 25 so good.
1. Getting into an MFA Program
If you saw me around March of last year, you might remember that I was not in a good place. Getting into a creative writing MFA was the one thing that I knew I wanted for myself, not something that I wanted as a result of someone telling me that it would be good for me. It was a hard time because I was in the process of receiving a lot of rejections and waitlist letters at the time.
Of course, now I’m in one, and I am so happy. Yes, there are a lot of sleepless nights as I try and meet deadlines, but it gives me such a sense of purpose and I’m trying to absorb every minute of it. The people in my cohort are phenomenal, and I truly think it was best for me to end up back at UCF.
Maybe the thing to look forward to with 26 is that I will actually have my Masters degree by then, meaning that I will achieve the one thing that I wanted for myself. I’m just going to have to savor this next year of my life, because I’m not really sure what will come next after that.
2. Moving in with My Boyfriend
In the process of this relationship, we have really been working on taking things step by step (mostly because when I think too far ahead, I get anxious and overwhelmed). Around the three year mark, we had discussed the possibility of moving in together, and I hesitated. Not because I thought it would be bad for us, but because I wanted to be ready to take an acceptance from a school if it was offered, and I had applied to schools across the country.
So when my acceptance came from UCF, it was kind of perfect for both of us. That is where we met, and he wouldn’t have to apply to transfer in his company. Everything worked out the way that it was supposed to.
We’ve now been living together for a year, and I don’t know how we could be happier. I feel like if I go on and on about it that it will start to sound like I’m bragging or exaggerating, but things truly are wonderful. We’re very good together.
3.Traveling to Nashville, Seattle, and Beyond
Having the opportunity to travel is truly a luxury, and you’re probably wondering how I can do it on a student budget. The truth is that it is one of the perks of having a boyfriend who travels for work; I just take advantage of his accommodations. That’s how I got to see Nashville, which has been on my bucket list since I developed my love of country music in high school.
However, I don’t just travel when my boyfriend works (that would make some of my days very lonely). Sometimes I travel to treat myself for my hard work, like when I went to Seattle earlier this spring. I signed up to attend AWP, a writing conference that took place in Seattle this year. It was perfect, because I was going to learn more about my industry and travel to another city on my bucket list (I’ve been wanting to go since learning it was the coffee capital in Aly and AJ’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Mysteries as a kid).
While I traveled to more than just Nashville and Seattle this year (Colorado, Vegas, Miami, and more), I felt those were the notable ones because they were the ones that have been on my bucket list. They’re the big ones for me.
4. Relationships: Strengthening, Discovering, and Renewing
A saying that I have learned and lived by is that people come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. It used to make me sad when my friendships fell out, or I would feel like a bad villain when I ended my relationships. Maybe it was the loss, or maybe I hadn’t lost enough, but now I’m at a point where I know it’s okay and will be okay in the long run.
Everything happens for a reason, and that is why I know things will be okay. Something I feel like I say a lot is that I am so grateful for the people in my life, but I say it because it is true and it is my way of reminding myself. The good people in my life have put work into making our relationship work, the same work that I have put in.
This past year, I have reflected on my relationships, old and new. I’ve reached out to some people that I haven’t talked to, and I’ve also just let some relationships go. That is part of why my life has been so good; I’m done letting people make me feel bad about myself.
My word of the year for 2023 is “relax,” but I have gotten a lot better at relaxing since being in this relationship. It ends up being about mindset at the end of the day, and that is what has changed. If I hadn’t relaxed a little throughout my life, I would’ve burned out long ago.
Like the time I used to watch television or read a book was a form of relaxing. Or going through the steps of my skin care, which might be labeled as preventative care, but truly helps me to relax into my bed at night. Moreover, sleeping is a form of relaxing, and helps to consolidate memory. Trust me, now that I’ve been reminded of how much I forget when I don’t sleep, sleep is very important.
When I think about it, I relax a lot more than I think, and I am at a point where I don’t feel guilty about it anymore (not sorry mom).
Twenty-five has been so good to me that I’m excited to see what twenty-six is going to bring. What are you looking forward to in the coming year? Is there a memory that has shaped this past year for you? Do you have an age you think fondly of? I would love to know in the comments down below!
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