At the beginning of each new year we all have plans. We set New Year’s resolutions. We write goals for this bright shiny new year down thinking that will help us accomplish them. We make promises and pacts to friends or family to do things as a group and help each other really stick to them this year because, you’ve never followed through with them the last three years you’ve made them. We have 365 days to make those promises, wishes and dreams happen. Do you?
This year was a year unlike any before (which I could probably say at the start of every new year) filled with really high highs and really low lows. I don’t really remember making New Year’s resolutions as the ball dropped last year, but only to be better this year than I was the last. I had no real direction nor did I know what this year was about to bring. I wasn’t sure what I wanted or where I was going. I had hopes to complete my bachelors degree. I wanted to travel often and live more. I wanted to fall in love or try at least. I wanted to try new things and see new places.
So January began the start of an entirely new adventure and that was falling in love with Austin. I had given up on love and love had given up on me, or so I thought. I was a week into the shiny new 2017 year when he came into my life. We neither one thought those first couple Bumble messages and texts that we would fall crazy in love…but we did. It didn’t start off slow and steady we went from both being okay alone to being inseparable. We became the everything each other needed and never knew.
Then we move into February. February brought it’s own new set of challenges and heartache that I was not ready to handle. It started off strong. Austin and I made our relationship official on February 3rd (my birthday). The days were full of laughter and love and social events. I went to Las Vegas for my annual photo shoot and rushed back to make it to his company holiday party to be introduced fully into his world. Everything was perfect. February 23rd my world fell from the stars it was hanging among when I received the call my dad had passed away. Someone who had been so absent from my life for so long suddenly had a huge impact on all of my days with his absence. I wasn’t ready to deal with his passing, but I had to regardless of if I wanted to or if I was mentally equipped to.
I spent March trying to figure life out still. I couldn’t understand the depth of the pain I was feeling from a loss I would never be prepared for. Life continued to move as much as I wanted it to stand still.
April sunshine didn’t help heal wounds but it helped band-aid them. April started off in Nashville catching a Minnesota Wilds hockey game. This comes after Austin exposed me to my love for hockey. Then two weeks later we boarded a plane and headed off to the Bahamas. Austin and I spent the weekend disconnected from the world and had a much needed social media detox over the Easter weekend.
May revolved around Austin’s birthday. Planning and preparing made for a perfect birthday week and the best weather we could have asked for. Then at the end of May I had my first Snake Pit experience for the Indy 500 and I outlasted the entire group of guys.
We cruised into June happy and warm. We spent the weekends at the lake or at company outings. We made our first trip to Minnesota together for a wedding and I met Austin’s Minneapolis family for the first time. I got to meet my God Son for the first time and we managed to get there and back without a speeding ticket.
July started with a bang while we watched the 4th of July fireworks sparkle from the Regions Bank Tower. That wasn’t the only bang July had in store because a week later I got my first concussion. Which soon followed Austin and I’s first ER visit together. It was still sweet summertime and we still enjoyed it to the fullest. I somehow convinced Austin to still let me go to the Indy 400 Fest (even though we left early both nights).
August brought new firsts. I went to my first ever professional football game and we spent lots of summer nights at concerts and long nights at the lake. We enjoyed the Indiana State Fair, well I enjoyed it. Then I took Austin to his first truck pull to honor my dad for his last ride down the track. August also was the beginning of the longest 12 weeks of my life. Bikini Competition Prep Began.
Colt’s games, a houseboat trip, fall festivals and lots of meals out of tupperware is what September looked like. Prep was in full swing along with the fall weather slowly creeping in. My competition bikini and jewelry came in and the countdown was getting smaller and smaller.
This October was unlike any October before because it consisted of no candy no cookies and lots of cardio. I spent more time in heels and gym shoes than anything else. Our Sundays were for football and weeknights for Pacer games. We attended our first Masquerade Gala and Austin and I both mentally prepared for Peak Week that was soon to come.
The long awaited month was here and it came full of more surprises than I could ever prepare for. Not many know just how the last few days of prep went, and the many that did consisted of Austin. Mostly because I couldn’t emotionally process all that was going on. I was running on about 1,000 calories a day doing over an hour of cardio a day and lifting for about another hour. Peak week started November 5th and this was also the day I got the phone call that my grandma had had a massive stroke. This day also happened to be when my mom had left on her birthday cruise for the week and I was alone to figure out how to get a hold of someone to convince them to give me information on my grandma’s condition because I couldn’t be found on any of her paper work. I spent the entire week emotionally broke down, hungry and worried. I still got up every morning and worked 8-5. I still worked out everyday after work and went home (or to Austins) ate my last meal and did my school work, because I was only a few weeks away from the last finals of my undergrad career.
Show day was everything I had hoped it would be and more. The after math of it not so much. As my grandma’s health condition fluctuated from doing better to talking with my mother about life or death decisions the month finally came to a close. Two ER visits and lots of Austin’s patience later November finally ended.
Now December is here. My classes are over and I unofficially have my Bachelors of Psychology. The holidays are upon us and I can not wait to bring this eventful, amazing and life changing year to a close and ring in the New Year in hopes the next 365 days bring more laughter and love with a couple less tears. I started the year on a clean slate, single and waiting to take the year by storm. I’m ending the year far more fulfilled than I ever could have imagined, in love and at peace with all this year brought.
So life happens no matter what resolutions you plan for yourself or goals you set to accomplish it still happens. I learned to lean on God a little bit more for moments I didn’t understand and for the why’s that I never will receive answers for. I learned to ask for help which hasn’t been an easy feat for me in the past. I learned that you don’t have to deal with everything all at once. I learned it’s okay to have some emotional meltdowns and the occasional or weekly cry (whichever you need). I learned that you learn the most in your moments of weakness. I learned what love was. I learned that life isn’t promised and will happen even when you’re not ready.
What does the next 365 days have in store? I’m excited to see.