Reflecting on 2019

When I look back at 2019 I see a year of chaotic energy – not only personally but just looking at the world in general. 2019 was a long year; so much happened in such a short period that one has to question how all the events that occurred in 2019 occurred in a single calendar year.

Personally, 2019 was a weird year. I didn’t know what to expect walking into 2019. I personally didn’t set too many expectations of myself because I was afraid to, especially after what everything that had gone down at the end of 2018. I’m still afraid, to be honest, I think any person who has a loved one with a terminal illness does live in a certain state of constant fear of losing them and uncertainty of what the future holds. And as a person who loves to be in control and having everything planned, that fear definitely makes life a little more interesting.

I fell into one of the most depressive states that I’ve ever been in this year. I didn’t really feel like doing much, I didn’t feel like putting myself out there, I felt a bit hopeless and it sucked. Luckily, I was able to come out of it, but I know how tough and draining it is while in the middle of it and if you are going through it right now know that there is help out there. Reach out and talk to someone if you need to. Don’t be afraid.

One of the big takeaways that I’m walking away with from 2019 is the realization that it’s okay that I haven’t figured everything out yet and that it’s okay for me to keep exploring, learning, and growing. I had a vision of who I wanted to be at 27 and the reality of it is that who I am today is nothing that I had envisioned at the beginning of the decade and that’s okay. I, hopefully, will have many more decades to become the person I hope I will be.

Looking back at 2019…

Books I loved: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong/ Dear Girls by Ali Wong/ Duchess by Design by Maya Rodale/ The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang/ For the Dukes Eyes Only by Lenora Bell/ All You Can Ever Know by Nicole Chung/ Becoming by Michelle Obama/ Rock Wedding and Rebel Hard by Nalini Singh

Books I finished reading in 2019: 65 – mostly romance – mostly ebooks – heavily skewed towards authors of colours and female authors – many borrowed from my local library

Albums/songs I couldn’t stop listening to: Glasshouse by Jessie Ware/ Time in a Tree by Raleigh Ritchie/ Heavy is The Head by Stormzy/ Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent by Lewis Capaldi/ LM5 by Little Mix/ Banners by Banners

Podcasts I adored: Call Your Girlfriend/ Ctrl Alt Delete/ The Wicked Wallflowers/ Show Your Work/ Ologies with Alie Ward/ Thirst Aid Kit

Favourite things I watched on a screen: Elementary/ Grimm (the two of seasons)/ Agents of SHIELD/ Whiskey Cavalier (RIP)/ Always Be My Maybe/ The Witcher (a late contender)

Bloggers/Youtubers that gave the best advice: Caroline Hirons (skincare goddess)/ Ashley aka Best Dressed (life)/ Amy Lee (life)/ Kate Spiers aka Kate La Vie (fashion, styling, health, and life)

Scents that grounded me: Oud/ By the Fireplace by Maison Margiela/ Whispers in the Library by Maison Margiela/ Binchotan Charcoal by Apotheke

Favourite I place visited: Quails’ Gate Estate Winery in British Columbia (aka. the wedding venue of my dreams if I ever get married)

Go-to Coffee: Americano Misto with vanilla syrup

Looking forward to 2020…

I turn 28 in 2020. I’ll also be graduating from my post-graduate program this year. I’m planning on taking another, a very short and sweet solo trip for my graduation. Other than those few things I don’t know what 2020 has in store for me, but I have made a list of determinations for the year.

Saeed Jones makes determinations every year, something he saw his mother do and something that he continues to do every year. I made a list of things “I will” do this year and I hope to reach them. (Also if you’re not subscribed to Saeed Jones newsletters you totally should because they will change your life. You’re welcome.)

Reading wise – I am setting myself a 50 book target for 2020. I’ve also put myself on a book-buying ban (unless the book is really on sale and/or I have already pre-ordered it) until I finish at least 50% of the books I already own.

Blog wise – I’m not sure where I want to go with my blog. I do want to continue to talk about books, but I also want to explore other things like TV shows or movies and anything else that comes into my life. I kind of floundered in 2019 when it came to creating and publishing new content and while I want to work on that, I also want to figure out what I love about the medium and if I really want to continue with it.

Final Note…

I read Kate’s (Kate La Vie – http://www.katelavie.com/2019/12/looking-back-2019.html) final note on her look back at 2019 and it really stayed with me and I want to share it here:

The end of the year is hard, and the end of a decade is even harder! I want you to know that whatever you have achieved, even if it’s not as much as you had hoped, even if you just managed to scrape by, that is enough. As I get older my hopes and goals change, I no longer celebrate just the big successes, I aim to make memories, to feel happier and be a person my loved ones are proud of.”

Her words spoke to me because the older I get the more I value memories and experiences than material items because at the end of the day I can look back on those memories and experiences and laugh and smile and remember how I felt in those moments when I need them the most.

I sincerely hope that you have a wonderful 2020 – one filled with laughter, love, joy, good health, strength, and prosperity.

Thanks for reading!

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