Hello, friends! I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas – I know I certainly did. I celebrated the holiday with a candlelight service at a local church, a sleepover at my mom’s, and opening presents with her in the early morning. Later on in the day, my brother and his family came over to open more presents and then I helped my mom host dinner for our extended family. It was a busy day, but one that was so full of love and family.
Today, I want to continue my “Best of 2015” series by reviewing the year on a month-by-month overview. Putting this review together helped me to put this year in perspective. While I’ll never qualify 2015 as a good year due to the loss I endured, I was happy to see that the year was filled with more happy emotions than sad ones. I can only hope 2016 holds that same promise.
In January, I was conflicted.
I was in a relationship that I didn’t want to be in, but I wasn’t sure why I was resisting when he was a great guy and we had fun together. The heart knows, though. My heart knew. By the end of the month, we would break up and I would feel nothing but utter relief.
In February, I was overjoyed.
Being single again felt right and true and exactly where I needed to be. I felt like me again, after two months of feeling disconnected from myself. This, in turn, led to a lot of questioning on my end (why am I more happy single? can I ever function in a relationship?), and I’m still trying to sort these questions out. Towards the end of February, my nephew Dominic was born and oh, what a chunky little nugget he was.
In March, I was blissful.
I returned to Savannah, one of my most favorite cities, for a short weekend trip with my mom. We ran a 5k while we were there, and I was just so, so happy to be back, walking through the historic squares and along the Riverfront. Savannah is home to me.
In April, I was social.
April helped me to realize what happens when you get off the couch and start investing in people. During this month, I was a bit of a social butterfly for me. There were afternoons of apartment hunting with my now-Roomie, an afternoon spent at Downtown Disney with Emilie and her fiance, brunch book club, family game nights, and some girls nights out. This month, I just felt really good with the place I was at in my life.
In May, I was delighted.
May was the month of my cruise and I had such a wonderful time – even if I did end it with a sprained ankle. It was lovely to have one-on-one time with my mom, exploring and relaxing and eating. We stopped in the Bahamas, St. Thomas, Puerto Rico, and Grand Turk. There’s no better vacation for me than a cruise, and a seven-day one is simply the best.
In June, I was engaged.
June was the month of wedding planning. I helped my mom with engagement pictures, wedding invitations, securing a ceremony location, designing a reception menu, and all the other decorative touches. I also helped my mom’s coworkers surprise my mom with a bridal shower, which was probably one of the best moments of my year. It was a busy month of planning and designing and imagining.
In July, I was lit up.
My mom re-married in July. The wedding was simple, but it was perfect. We had no mishaps and I somehow managed to coordinate the whole thing without losing my mind. Actually, it was really fun to be the so-called “coordinator.” It was a lot of work, but god, it was so much fun, too. I loved being in charge! Lit up – there’s no better way to describe July.
In August, I was restful.
I took a break from blogging and social media in August, and it was exactly what I needed. I slowed down my life, spent a lot of time reading and being quiet and still. A quiet pace of life is so helpful for me. It keeps me centered and sane and feeling most like myself.
In September, I was afraid.
I moved in September. I moved to a new city that felt so different from where I used to live. I moved in with a roommate and away from my mom. And it was so damn hard. It was such a huge shakeup to my life and I lived in fear for weeks following the move. There were many panic attacks, and there was an afternoon when the panic was so bad that I had to leave work. I cried a lot. Withdrew from people. And felt so much shame about my anxiety. September, oh, it was a hard month but I had no idea how much harder life was about to get.
In October, I was heartbroken.
I lost my grandma in October. Her loss was the most awful thing I’ve ever been through – the finality of death is so crushing – but if there was any way for someone so beloved to go, it was this way. She was surrounded by her family and friends, and she went peacefully and without any pain. I never expected to lose her this year and I can’t say I’ve been grieving well. (Just thinking about never seeing her again is so crushing that I just… don’t.) I spent a lot of time with my mom this month, being there for her and trying to help in any way I can. I’m still not sure how to move through this life without Grandma, but I’m going to try to make her proud.
In November, I was focused.
I spent the month in a haze of writing, trying to win NaNoWriMo (writing 50,000 words in one month). It’s interesting to me how some years I cannot stay focused to win NaNoWriMo and then other years, it comes so effortlessly to me. This year, it was effortless and I am so proud of myself for putting in the work.
In December, I was settled.
December was the month where I finally felt like Tampa and my new life here fit. I began to establish my own routines and figure out what I wanted my life to look like. I spent a lot of this month doing a lot of soul searching as I reflected on the past year and made plans for what I want to achieve in the upcoming one. I felt more at ease, less fearful, happier. It’s a wonderful note to end the year on, if I do say so myself.
What are some of the emotions you experienced in 2015?