If I had to pick one word to describe 2017 it would be nomadic.
It was filled with crucial changes, some pleasing and some painful. I met some of the most amazing and influential people that changed me in ways I didn’t think possible, and I grew away from negative forces in my life. Moving half way across the country caused me to be severed from my roots and challenged me with an environment drastically different than the one I had grown up in, and I couldn’t be more thankful for that.
Mizzou has proven to be the best decision I have ever made. College (and being a kind of adult) is challenging, and self-discipline has become much more prevalent in my life than it was before I lived away from home. There are so many areas in which it is easy to lose yourself, and being on my own has taught me to stick to my guns and be true to myself through trial and error. You are who you are, and you can only alter yourself for so long until you drift back home. I made plenty of mistakes and I know I will make plenty more in the year to come, but those mistakes, along with some very loving and supportive friends, have taught me what it means to forgive yourself. We are only human and by very definition, we screw up. Learning to grant myself the same grace I would grant others was and is challenging, and I still have a long way to go in that department. This year will be a year of pushing myself to be better at this and many other things.
It was filled with many adventures with the best friends I could have ever asked for, and I am so lucky to have them in my life. I now know that God had them lined up to make their entrance right when I needed them most, and I am so excited to be taking on this next year (and many more after) with them.
Moving forward, there are so many wonderful things I am taking with me in 2018. I have a girl gang that is strong as titanium, and it is so lovely to feel so secure in the people that surround you.
I am fortunate enough to be pursuing my passion in my studies and am so excited to dive deeper into what it means to be a photojournalist, and I feel so lucky to have such supportive friends and parents cheering me on. I have no doubt that this year is going to be the best one yet, and am committing to loving myself and others more than I ever have before, and constantly challenging myself to be better than I was yesterday. Things will knock me down, but I am ready to stand up and move head-on into the rest of my life.
Thanks for the memories 2017. 2018, here is to many more. M-I-Z!