Written on Dec. 31, 2019.
I've always loved the idea of starting fresh in a new year. Growing up, I remember my mother waking my dad and I from our normal slumber to watch the ball drop on December 31. I almost didn't wake up for the turn of the century, but c'est la vie. I was well rested for 2000.
As I get older I've realized that for someone with a lot of short-term goals and to-do lists already — literally the only way to survive as a sole reporter for a weekly newspaper — the idea of making a resolution every year is pretty taxing. Essentially for me, making a resolution is just adding another item onto the never ending checklist that is my life. Sure, I have goals, but with a new year looming, I'm more excited about all the possibilities to come that I maybe don't have plans for.
I know, I'm a planner with anxiety, so the idea that the unexpected is even exciting to me may seem somewhat masochistic, but really it's not.
And that's maybe one of the main reasons I've remained a person of faith throughout my life.
There's a freedom that comes with realizing you aren't completely in control. Sometimes you just have to believe God knows better and follow where life leads.
I didn't say it's easy, but it can be rewarding.
Today my Facebook memories reminded me that 8 years ago today I applied to Central, the college I would eventually call my home for four years.
Deciding to go to Central wasn't an easy decision for me as a high school senior. I'd had high hopes of returning to George Mason in Virginia, a prestigious school where I'd been fortunate to attend a journalism conference in my junior year. But, due to finances and also the idea of packing up my life and moving 3,000 miles away, I didn't go. However, it was from that initial experience at GM that I learned I didn't need a J degree to be a reporter, and that inevitably shaped my path to Central's English department, then Political Science department.
We have a great deal of free will in this world, but I don't believe I ended up at Central all on my own. I couldn't have known that because I stayed in-state I’d be around my grandfather more before he unexpectedly passed away. I couldn't have known I'd end up meeting so many talented people I still get to call friends. I couldn't have known that all of those things would eventually lead me to the life I'm living now, with a great apartment, a job that allows me to give back in ways I never imagined a journalist being capable of, a pretty darn cute boyfriend and so much more.
I do sometimes think of what I could do in the future. Things that would really shake up the life I'm living now. Maybe I'll reapply to GM for a master's degree? Maybe I'll move to Washington DC? Maybe I'll even become an international correspondent and live abroad somewhere one day?
I'll admit, thinking about those possibilities does create the slightest bit of anxiety for me. Change still requires work and adjustment. But more than anything, the idea that I have these possibilities — that I have numerous possibilities in every area of my life really — is a source of happiness for me. And, while I may find cause to reflect on these possibilities more this time of year, I don't see the need to force a resolution on myself.
We have room to grow and change and improve every day.
We should be reflecting on that more than just once a year.