I know I’m a bit late in bidding adieu to the year that has passed. It is over a month into the new one already. I really need to do something about this whole punctuality business. Or perhaps I’ve been a little bit in denial.
I’m late, I’m late. For a very important date. No time to say “Hello”. Goodbye. I’m late, I’m late, I’m late. – The White Rabbit
2017 was something alright. Full to the brim of lessons learned, heartbreaks galore, body art, unexpected achievements and even an injury or two. All that and more.
I’ve never seen the point in having regrets, so I don’t feel bad about past occurrences – or at least I try not to. I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, even if it’s not how we expect or what we want. In the end, we can only be thankful for the journey because there is no final destination in this adventure we call life.
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams – Eleanor Roosevelt
In 2017 I witnessed how pain changes people. Some people let it knock them further down until they don’t know how to get up anymore. Others use it to rise to greater heights than they have ever reached before. It made me want to be one of the risers too. We eventually don’t realize how much of our pain becomes self-inflicted, purely by our mindset and how it deteriorates. Thought patterns can be manipulated and evolve to become what you want them to be. It requires a bit of sweat and tears and a lot of commitment to yourself and finding your happiness. It doesn’t change overnight, but it’s not impossible to change the way you think and your outlook on life.
There were a lot of ups and downs, and I remember them all fondly. Even if it did not make me happy, I learned from the struggles and the heartache. I learned that it is okay to struggle with something if it doesn’t come naturally to you, but that just means you have to work twice as hard to succeed. A little bit of dedication and hard work is something that I need more of in my life. I am far too comfortable drifting along most of the time, doing just enough to keep everyone happy.
2017 taught me to let go of other people’s expectations and to chase what matters to me instead. There is a bunch of passion and fire in the dreams that are waiting to be realized from the depths of my soul. When all is said and done, my life is what I make it and I want to make it one that I enjoy living every single day. It’s going to take a lot of hard work but it will be worth it – and there will be time for some fun on the side too.
Set your goals high, and don’t stop ’til you get there. – Bo Jackson
Looking back on the year, I actually achieved a decent amount of important goals, which include the following:
- I finally got my Driver’s License. I honestly never thought I would be able to drive. Especially not in Dubai. When I first arrived here, I was terrified of being on the road. I am so glad I finally plucked up the courage to go for lessons. I love the independence it provides.
- I achieved my Goodreads goal of reading 36 books. I have been wanting to read more and this goal helped me achieve it. I used to read so much more during high school and even more than that when I was in primary school. I couldn’t very well call myself a bookworm if I didn’t read anymore, so I was determined to make a change as soon as possible. I set my goal on Goodreads, and the rest is history.
- I was part of The Bigfoot Team and we participated in the Expo 2020 University Innovation Programme. We were not really aware of the magnitude of the opportunity and didn’t know what we were signing up for. We went through the semi-finals and the finals, competing against around 30 other groups and we managed to become one of the finalists. We will be working on our idea to reduce carbon footprint for the next 6 months, and hopefully, everything goes well.
- My short story Borrowed Bounces was published in Cinderella Reimagined: An Anthology of Cinderella Retellings. The book can be bought on Amazon for $8.99. This is part of a project by my dear friend Anna Jailene Aguilar and her associate Theresa J. Barker. They are currently in the process of doing a similar collection of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and I hope to participate in that project as well.
- Number four resulted in me becoming a Goodreads Author. Honestly, this was so much fun to discover and it is so motivational for me to continue with my writing. I really have enjoyed this journey over the past 18 months where I have reconnected with my creative side that has lain dormant for the majority of my life.
- 2017 marks my first year of Bullet Journaling and filling up 2.75 journals. This planning system has been so much fun and I love every minute of it. I am so glad I decided to try it out.
- I expanded my spine tattoo. I have been wanting to do it for a while, and in December I finally had enough courage
and cashto take the plunge. It was really a lovely experience and I am so happy with the result. I big thank you to Vitamin Ink Tattoos for the lovely artwork and conversation. Hopefully, I’ll find the time and a photographerto take some pictures soon.
What’s comin’ will come, an’ we’ll meet it when it does – Professor Rubeus Hagrid
Needless to say, I hope 2018 holds even more exciting experiences and achievements. This year will have its own challenges and obstacles but I am ready for them. I wish you all a Happy New Year, and I hope you chase your dreams until they come true. Are you ready to go down the rabbit hole with me?
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