Think of this as my virtual holiday card. Happy New Year from me!
2018 began in the midst of glow sticks. My cheeks glistened with sweat and I formed the resolution to say “no” more. This year began with me, first.
In 2018, I have experienced joy from my fingers to my toes, filling up and overflowing from the deepest corners of my soul. I traveled, laughed, cooked and ate my fill. I kicked a** in med school, read a lot and played a lot. I am physically stronger because of CrossFit, and mentally stronger because of life. This year I have also felt tremendously lonely. Waves of bitterness and grief washed over me as I watched friends who I called family continue to live their lives without me. I questioned what I was doing in lecture halls 20+ hours a week when I was perfectly happy with the course of my life before.
At the beginning of my winter break I traveled back to Atlanta for a wedding of a friend and a lot of the trip felt like returning home. Then when I landed in Denver, that also felt like returning home. I think it’s easy to forget the pain and yearning of years past when you feel stuck in the moment. I was content with my life before, but medical school was always a missing piece. I knew there was something more for me. I knew that I was born to do something bigger and sometimes it’s more painful, as we pursue that something bigger, than we imagine. When the days are long, and they blur together, we joke around, sarcastically saying things like, “look what happens when you follow your dreams”, but in all seriousness, look what can happen when you follow your dreams. It’s hard work, but I know I’ll look back on this time with fond memories.
I have been challenged and I have grown. I may have missed the mark at times, but I’m still striving for the bullseye.
This year I have been learning about the power of listening before speaking. I tried to learn to say no, but still said yes, a lot. This will most certainly be another goal for 2019.
I’m hopeful for this year to come.
A few of the highlights from my year —
- I adopted my cat, Pippa. She hates me and loves me and is more like a dog than a cat. I love her. 2018 taught me that I can be a crazy cat lady.
- I turned 26, bought myself flowers. If no one else is going to do it, then I will.
- I participated in the CrossFit Open. CrossFit makes me feel strong, capable and powerful. It reminds me that we can accomplish any challenge we are faced with if we persistently chip away at the work.
- I went backpacking in Utah at the little-known national park – Capitol Reef.
- I learned about the heart and gave a speech to my dog. Jk, I gave it to people, but I pictured them all as my dog while standing on stage.
- I ran my first half-marathon. About a month before, I went to the running store to buy new shoes and I spent the whole time trying them on telling the guy helping me that I hated running. Apparently, it was charming enough for him to ask me out.
- We finished our first year of medical school and we celebrated with the spiciest Thai food at City Park.
- I went to Bellingham with the rest of the family to cheer for Leah graduating from Western Washington University.
- Then we went moose hunting in Winter Park and slept under the stars.
- I went to London and learned that solo travel is not for me.
- Back to medical school, more sleeping under the stars, sailing on Carter lake. This was the start of a challenging semester in school.
- We rang in September by hiking a 14er in the snow.
- The MS2’s beat the MS1’s in kickball.
- Successfully completed Neuro and felt closer to my med school fam than ever. This month passed by in a blur of study, eat, sleep, repeat.
- Snow! More of the blur and Thanksgiving and Med School Prom.
- A trip to Atlanta.
- Skiing and lots of cookies.
Cheers to 2018!