I truly believe in the end of the year as a means to reflect.
I made a list of positive then negative things that happened this year, by month. I used everything from my iMessages, my Sunrise Calendar, my social networks, and my Gmail to recall events. It was really much more an exercise for me than anything anyone would read. It was pretty powerful, for two reasons:
- The positive things were easier to recall for the months earlier in the year.
- The negative things were easier to recall for things later in the year.
- I can’t believe all these things happened this year.
Maybe time DOES heal.
January – Read some interesting books. Start fresh with a new semester. I started working at library with kids I am now unbelievably attached to. Tell myself I can do this and recover from a terrible year. My college wins the National Championship and I gain a lot of pride from going to school there.
Go back to college and feel really sad. I stayed up too late to talk to Bo and let him talk me into continuing to talk to him after school had already started for me. Feel sad that I don’t have a lot of friends. Feel sad about the Charlie Hebdo attacks and the state of the world.
February – I started working at COP. I made a new friend from Korea. I learned amazing things about our environment and our moral duty to it. I make great friends with some cool bisexuals and stop worrying about whether or not they actually like me, we hang out and I have fun. Eat so many pancakes and Lucky Charms.
I started to feel uncomfortable in one of my classes that talked about culture. My school’s dance marathon is a bust. I continued with Bo and he treated me badly during a panic attack and implied my illness was just me being dramatic. Went to see him in person and it was a disappointment. Get sick of Facebook. Working at COP is kind of boring. Have an appetite for nothing except Lucky Charms and pancakes.
March – I got new glasses. I went to Florida and Disney with my family and my other family. I saw Blue Man Group and was totally inspired and touched. One of the performers afterward took a picture with me. I told him I was an artist and he came out of character to tell me good luck. Donate money to Operation Limitless Compassion.
Some stupid governor of my state puts into law the “Religious Equality” act and everyone begins hating on the state I love. I missed free pancakes for National Pancake Day. I went to see Bo and he treated me badly and then didn’t want to see me later because he wanted to work on his DnD stuff. Bo distances himself from me. I got really sick in Florida.
April – I saw a funny improv show. I realized my passion for the environment and love for the west side of campus. I declared a major there. Hung out with my buddy Zac a lot. My therapist is very helpful. Hillary Clinton announces her bid for presidency, and this excites me. I think I went for some runs too.
Early in the month, I tell Bo that I’m hurt, and end things. I tell him we’ll talk again in 6 weeks. I’m very depressed over all of this. Miss most of March Madness.
May – I have a lot of fun learned wood shop. I develop a new set of skills and hobbies. I feel like I’m growing. Finals go alright. I go hiking in Zeleski, Ohio.
I have a weird fantasy about Zac and the conflict gives me a huge stomachache/headache/something I will never forget. I still kind of have a crush on Zac but find out I was reading signs wrong, and it’s awkward. I meet up with John and we have sex, and it’s good sex. I’m miserable in my hometown after school ends.
June – Things could have been more awkward with my friend Zac but we stay friends! Same sex marriage is legalized and feel overjoyed. Trip to Las Vegas with family cheers me up. I get to see the Grand Canyon and it is amazing. Ramadan begins and I do well fasting. My family puts up with me. My friend and I bond over our misery of being in our stupid hometown.
Sad I can’t celebrate the legalization of same sex marriage in my college town with my friends. I ruin our vacation a few times because of anxiety/panic/depression. My online class starts and is really boring. Ramadan is hard. I try to open up to Bo but it’s hard and I don’t feel returned. My thoughts are overwhelmed with him. Sex is bad. I try to tell him. He cuts me off.
July – Ramadan ends. I get birth control! See John Green and Nat and Alex Wolfe during the Paper Towns Tour. I write a really cool paper and watch an awesome documentary. I start a wordpress!
I have an odd appointment with the OBGYN that I am not satisfied with. I’m afraid to go outside in this stupid town.
August – We head to Canada, where I visit my cousins and they are much fun. I get ready and excited and nervous to go back to my college town soon. I pass my online class easily. I begin working at my current job and love it. I see people again.
Canada is a total anxiety attack, and I realize the person I was there is not the person I love being. My therapist is unhappy that I didn’t have any treatment all year. Much much anxiety being alone and missing home. Talk to Bo again and start to believe everything is my fault. Find out Bo has a girlfriend and cry pretty much everyday from then on.
September – Go home cause I miss my mom, and it refuels me. Start to understand what my classes are gonna be like. Start moving my shifts from the coffee shop to the dining hall and manage to enjoy it and not join the complaining. Become very comfortable with the idea of crying and find strength in my depression. Find support in one of my friends. Start going back to the library for volunteering. Work really hard at writing a cool article for a fashion magazine. Explore the city and begin to fall in love. Read some good books.
Miss my family from Canada, miss my sisters, feel pretty bad, and sleep in a lot. End up not volunteering at the homeless shelter I wanted to and do a shitty job letting the person know. Miss therapy appointments. Don’t answer calls from home. Start getting annoyed from the billions of emails that come in everyday because I signed up for too much shit at the involvement fair. Hit a wall in therapy.
October – Put a lot of work into my art. Meet 3rd graders from a private school in the city and get to teach a lesson for them. Do really good at school. Start late night shifts at work and get a work schedule I’m comfortable with, and really find my place at work. Love my major. Meet a band called Captain Kidd for an interview. Have a kickass halloween. Come up with an amazing story to write for NaNoWriMo.
Miss Tyler Oakley by 10 minutes! Go back and forth on whether or not to do a study abroad, but ultimately decide against it. Continue to oversleep and be too hard on myself. Start feeling weird. I work too hard and pretend it wasn’t happening. I miss therapy appointments. Group Therapy is a terrible idea. Find out I have library fines, but don’t pay them (I still haven’t). Start to realize that both my roommates are kind of weird. Feel constantly exhausted.
November – I go to the sheep barn! I love my department, major, peers, and professors, and realize I’m lucky to have them. Feel thankful and hang out with some cool people. Get to write a little bit but not too much, and not get totally disappointed over it. I enjoy my Thanksgiving. Have my first one night stand, and it’s great!
Continue to ignore signs of my downfall. Have a total breakdown, hyperventilate for the first time, and have to go home. Feel broken. End up missing a bunch of events I want to go to and feel bad for it. Have major problems with my appetite. Continue to feel exhausted. Worry I can’t make it. My team suggests I do some program in the hospital and that stresses me off. Decide therapy is a waste. Don’t jump in Mirror Lake.
December – Miss the extension conference. I kick the ass of [most of] my finals. Start having some confidence. I have an amazing time with a family I love with all of my heart. I feel very thankful. I get to see my friend. Start feeling free and proud of myself.
I totally break down because of all the work I put in. I go on a cruise when I probably should just rest. Get bored at home but be okay with it. Miss my college city bunches. Get seasick.
End on a high note.