This year has been an especially challenging one for me personally: a lengthy season of change, growth, healing. I committed the year to self-reflection and to an intense laser-like pursuit of my passions. At the end of it, the biggest gift I gave myself in 2017 was self-respect. It sounds silly, but for someone who seems almost hard-wired to want to make everyone happy, it was quite a difficult but powerful lesson. I stopped settling —- in all aspects of my life. I threw away the idea that valuing your own peace, even if it requires walking away from certain opportunities or certain people, is selfish; it’s necessary.
It’s been a year of toiling, essentially. I feel like a gardener who had to pull out the weeds growing in my life and get muddied up in order to make room for what belongs. But planting a seed has no instant gratification. You have to water it with intentionality and with trust — that it’s going to bloom beautifully in due time and that what is meant for your life will arrive there.
I’ve also challenged myself every day this year to intentionally practice gratitude, as in, wake up or go to bed each day reminding myself of at least three things I’m thankful for. I am so blessed to have a small but fierce circle of compassionate, genuine, and truly kind souls, and I feel so happy to have a career that allows me to meet so many interesting characters and tell important stories in a city that’s really captured my heart.
The quote that kept floating in my mind this year: “And still, I rise.”