When you think of a year as a whole, in the scope of things it doesn’t seem like a lot has happened. I mean, you’ve basically just spent 365 days watching a bunch of television and checking a bunch of email. Or, in my personal case, watching a bunch of television, a bunch of One Direction videos, and checking a bunch of email.
I wish I were kidding.
But when you break it down piece by piece, as I just did a moment ago composing this blog post in my head (it probably won’t translate very well) you did, well, a lot. Here’s my list of the top 13 things I did in 2013:
1) Sang my own original song for voice. In front of a good-size crowd, too. Since then, I’ve been writing like crazy. Learning chords last year changed my life, in a way. I now have the freedom to write music whenever I please. And it’s an awesome feeling.
2) Started to bike again. No matter that I hadn’t ridden one in two years and wrecked so badly my first day trying I now have scars. Now I can coast around the streets of ______, looking totally cool in my helmet. No, really.
3) Became completely One Direction obsessed. So maybe this isn’t the sort of thing you should usually include in your Things I Did In 2013 lists. Big deal. I’m kind of proud of it, actually. I mean, I was just starting to find out who they were this time last year. Now I’m practically a seasoned pro. I’ve seen, like, every interview. The movie. Listened to practically all the songs. I know the quotes. You jealous yet? Because you should be.
4) Went Gluten Free. I mean, I never planned this. I loved bread. Pasta, cakes, younameit...but in September necessity called for me to give it up. And…I don’t miss it. At all. It’s really refreshing, actually. I feel lighter, less negative, more thoughtful. (Okay, confession: I cheated on Christmas and ate two bowls of my Grandpa’s chowder. But until that point, I hadn’t had a drop of gluten in about two months).
5) Got my permit. Never mind I’ve only used it once since then, I GOT MY PERMIT. And that’s all that counts!
6) Wrote stuff that mattered. To me, anyway. It was strange, this year, because writing really took a backseat to music. For the past few years, telling stories has been everything I ever wanted to do, and all the sudden it wasn’t anymore. In August, the poetry bug struck, and I couldn’t cure it for the life of me. I filled up a whole pink notebook with embarrassing thoughts and then amplified the aforementioned solitary embarrassment by posting everything online. People figured me out, and now I cringe reading it back. But what can you do? They were my best poems yet because they meant something, never mind the fact that I sounded ridiculous.
7) Helped my mom baby sit. For a whole, semi-torturous month in June, life was insane. I was up at 6:30 every morning, ready to carry a baby. I fed little kids. I helped change their diapers. I played with them at the pool. I carried a newborn baby and didn’t break it. That long month of work gave me a good sense of accomplishment, and I wouldn’t take it back. Although now I have reconsidered having kids until I’m in my thirties. Probably mid.
8) Cut my hair short. Being homeschooled, the repercussions of this were not nearly what they would have been had I woken up and gone to school the next morning. There wasn’t a lot at stake. I did it back in February, and it’s just now starting to grow out. I loved it. Well, at the time. Looking back on pictures from then I cringe a little bit. Everyone thought it was cute, at least. Now it’s down to my ears, and I’m loving it again. I even got a blonde streak put in that my Grandparents find weird.
9) Volunteered at the animal shelter. I did that for the whole summer with a friend, and I really enjoyed it. I miss it, actually, sometimes. I gave it up because I decided to try the library instead, and the procedures weren’t what they should have been. But it was so much fun. I walked dogs and played with cats, cleaned a bunch of cages and laughed a lot. Sometimes I want to go back, but we’ll see.
10) Learned what it takes to have a friendship. I had a friendship this year that was fun and fleeting. We had such a good time, but it didn’t last. So, yes, you’re left standing wondering what happened, and you want closure, but things are occasionally best left open-ended. I also learned that even when lives are a different and you’re up and down and you kind of even fight, you’ll always go back to that friend. You know, the one that has been there for you forever. The one you can't imagine your life without. So maybe some friendships don’t always last, but there are the others that can't bring themselves to end. And that’s what matters… *cue sappy music*
11) Won NaNoWriMo. I’m still happy about this little victory! Well, kind of. It just seems strange that I wrote 50,000 words in a month, but I did. November was a blur with that thrown in, but at the end it was worth it. My little book is still unfinished–it has another 20,000 words to go (or so)–but it’s a little book I’m proud of, thus far.
12) Interviewed for a job. That, my friend, is an event I look back on and cringe. Everything was going fairly well until I got asked to tell a story about a funny thing that had happened to me. And I…came up blank. Completely wiped clean. So me, being the brilliant girl I was, asked the interviewer to define funny. No, I really did! Then I spilled some lame story about how our dog got hit by a car but we got a better dog and wasn’t that funny how things worked out? Then she tells me she was looking for something actually funny. So I told a story that happened all the way back in sixth grade. It wasn’t until after that I recalled something good. But that’s a moot point. I’m a writer, for pete’s sake! Why didn’t I just make something up?!
13) Turned sixteen. Turning sixteen has a lot of I’m Thankful For’s you could stick beside it. Like: I’m thankful for and I love my family. I’m so thankful to have a Mom that loves me and a Dad that loves me and two brothers that are, um, crazy but love me. I’m thankful and lucky to have a my cat boyfriend and my overweight (not really) dog. I’m thankful to have my best friend and my wonderful cousin and my experiences and my life. Really, it’s all quite an experience.
So. Looking back at this list, I’m actually quite proud. I did more than I thought I actually did, which was nice. Now, onto next year’s resolutions and goals:
1) Get my license. After driving more than just one time, preferably.
2) Finish my book. And then edit. Ugh.
3) Work on singing and songwriting. Build up my YouTube channel and get a following. Maybe I’ll even try to audition for an overproduced singing show. You just never know, do you?
4) Be less hypochondriac-ish.
5) Figure out what I want to do after high school. Career-wise.
6) Learn French.
7) Go on vacations. Maybe even plan travelling outside of the US for 2015.
8) Meet some new people! Join clubs, or volunteer and put myself out there so I can make some more friends.
9) Grow my hair out.
10) Finish my diary. This thing has been going on for a year and a half. I am ready to finally fill one up for the first time in my life! And then spend a really long time selecting a new one, because the old was just perfect.
11) Bike a lot. Walk as well. Enjoy the trail with my family.
12) Discover some new music and honor the old by attending a One Direction concert.
13) Get a job I’ll actually enjoy.
14) Have a lot of fun and new experiences.
And it's a lot to look forward to. Happy New Year!
So this was a blog post I did last night, so I decided to post it here as well! Y'all should do one of your own, if the idea appeals to you. :) I'd love to read it!