Two-thousand and eighteen. Oh, what a year.
A year of triumph, loss, pain and unconditional love. It was a year where I saw some of my biggest triumphs and biggest fears come true.
January of last year I jumpstarted my photography business through social media, a website launch and some swag business cards.
February let me dive into stewardship and community engagement through the annual Indiana Campus Compact Summit and further developing relations within the NGO community.
March allowed me to discover how to properly operate a photo studio while also having the chance to invite my two best friends to join me at a sorority event.
April held the discovery of “my crowd” through photography adventures, photographing a prom and traveling to Denver for The Image, Deconstructed photojournalism workshop organized by Ross Taylor.
May (the Fourth be with you) had me meeting David Letterman, returning to Vermont, watching my big sis walk across the college stage and photographing Chris Hemsworth at the Indy 500.
June has been blocked out of my mind with my father’s first heart attack.July opened my heart to all the love one person can hold through the toughest of times when I received the chance to be the multimedia manager at Camp Kesem - a camp for kids' who’s parents have cancer. It also took me to Country Thunder and quickly followed with my sister’s bachelorette party and her wedding day.
August welcomed my senior year of college, media passes to the Indiana State Fair (and Hunter Hayes!), photographing the world from above in a WACO plane and brought me my hedgehog, Amelia Hedgehart.
I reeled September in by catching my first fish, purchasing a film camera and celebrating two of my best friends’ birthdays.
October had me traveling to Flint, Michigan for a hands-on photo workshop with Jake May, Kaytie Boomer and Jacob Hamilton.
BIRTHDAY MONTH! My favorite of the 12, but it brought many rough days. Some spent in the hospital, some in Atlanta and a cancelled trip to Boston. I received a volunteer scholarship for the Atlanta Photojournalism Seminar two weeks before Thanksgiving, then saw family from all over the country just days before my 22nd. After an Indiana University basketball game with gramps, I celebrated Giving Tuesday with Camp Kesem and helped to raise over $14,000.
December immediately began with a beautiful formal with my best friend, my future bridesmaid and her man. It quickly brought the stressful week of finals and a relaxing family vacation to Florida. The year ended with a soul-sister at a masquerade ball where I learned to swing dance, waltz, hustle and salsa.
Two-thousand and eighteen. What a year.
I loved it, I hated it, I watched Netflix with wine and whined while I watched Netflix.
With the coming year, I have to work through a new diagnosis, learn how to make edible food in a kitchen, intensely progress my photography, graduate college and work on my relationships and words. With the coming year I see struggles ahead, I see fears and happy days. With no trips yet planned, my feet are anxious, my heart is racing to soar and my mind is wondering what will be.
What will be? What can I make of it? How can I be better? And how can I continue to discover?
All questions I ask almost daily. Other than finding an alarm to kick me out of bed every morning, I have goals set, plans made, but no resolutions.
Resolution - to be determined to accomplish a goal. I love this word, but I am afraid it lacks its true meaning to me due to its overuse every January 1st.
Instead of making a resolution, a friend gave me the advice to focus my next year on a word. After not wanting to think of the next year out of worry, I was waiting in line at Orlando Studios and suddenly realized that I would do nothing in 2019 but persevere.
And the worry, fright and anxiety all subsided.
Persevere - to continue with an action or goal even in the face of adversity. It means that no matter what happens this year, I have to accomplish my goals and I will.
No matter what happens this year, I will make my 2018 self proud.
Two-thousand and nineteen. Oh, what a year it will be.