2013: The Year of Transformation

Christmas Day, 3pm. I sat alone in my living room and decided to do something I’d never done before. I watched the Queen’s speech. I thought about the importance of reflection in my own life. I’ve been through a lot of changes this year, but I feel I am in the process of a major transformation.

My first blog was a bit of a moan, but it struck a chord with many of you, who may have experienced similar situations in your own life. This post is a positive one; because amongst the arguments, challenges, setbacks and confusion, I made some memories this year that I will cherish forever.

These are the times and lessons I will carry with me forever, and they go to show that 2013 wasn’t all bad.

January/February 2013 – I was determined to let go of the ‘hangers on’ that kept holding me back. The guys that didn’t want me, but didn’t want anyone else to have me, and the people that would only call when they needed something. I spent my birthday alone this year, but those that text me at 12am were the ones that I knew I wanted to hold onto. This gave me some comfort.

I went on my last date a few days after my birthday, and it was a little disastrous. Attractive guy, but waaaay too full on. It was obvious that we were after different things. Word of advice to all guys taking a girl out on a first date – at least try and laugh at her jokes. Oh, and don’t ask what type of underwear she’s wearing while hinting for a kiss. CRINGE! This was when I decided I wanted a break from the dating scene. 2013 would be dedicated to me. I would defeat my demons, face my challenges and see what happens along the way.

March 2013 – I met up with the Uni lot. After waiting an hour and a half at Euston station for my mate who didn’t want to leave her boyfriend, I realised that I deserved more. I loved my friends and knew that they loved me, but I was moving further down in their priority list. I decided I would make me my own priority. I knew it would be hard, but I had to learn to say no to people who didn’t value my time.

April 2013 – The wonderful Ella Eyre liked one of my cheeky tweets and gave me free tickets to the Rudimental gig in Birmingham. I took my brother and we had the best time! I let out all my frustration and anger whilst raving to one of my favourite albums of the year. Music became my new best friend. At times when I had no-one, I’d put on my iPod and find myself lost in the lyrics. Magic.

Rudimental

Rudimental

May 2013 – A weekend in London, where I met with four lovely tweeters who I had been chatting to for a while. Now, I wasn’t quite myself this day. I felt my anxiety kick in, and this was fuelled with that ‘first date’ butterflies feeling; but I’m glad we all met and had such a wonderful day! I remember feeling grateful for having such a diverse range of people in my life. I just needed to be free of the anxiety, and I knew this would only happen if I continued venturing out of my comfort zone. I still remember this day and smile.

June 2013 – Further out of my comfort zone, I attended a writer’s meeting, where I met the most remarkable and creative people. I felt privileged reading work shared by others, as well as discussing our mutual passion. I realised that writing could be a valuable outlet for my frustrations and loneliness, and it already served the same purpose for many bloggers and poets. I went home feeling utterly inspired.

July 2013 – Best weekend of the year was in July. I went to my first ever music festival! (Wireless Fest) I’ll always remember the moment we entered Olympic Park and settled in a nice spot – I felt sick! I looked around and saw a never-ending sea of people. I felt suffocated and my body froze. My anxiety kicked in and I told my friend that I had to leave immediately. After a little calming down, I found a spot on the grass and sat down, swigged a bit of cider and started feeling a little more at home. (Might I add, the fumes of weed were rife in the atmosphere, so maybe this helped!) The moment John Legend came on stage was the changing point. As long as I had my friends in sight, I could handle this bitch! Best moments were seeing Emeli Sande, Frank Ocean and Tinie Tempah for the first time. I conquered my first festival in style, whilst enjoying the sunshine in all its glory.

Wireless Festival

Wireless Festival

September 2013 – After Wireless, I essentially suffered from summertime sadness. I spent most of my summer alone and I hated it. My social life came to a standstill and I questioned my own purpose. However, after a lacklustre break in Riga, (the city that hates vegetarians) I visited the Natural History Museum – a place that had been on my ‘to do’ list for as long as I can remember. I was astounded by the mere beauty of the building, never mind all the displayed artefacts! I loved the animal history and the beautiful gemstones.

Natural History Museum

Natural History Museum

October 2013 – This. I pulled my finger out and set up my own blog. A place where I could record my own thoughts and reflect upon situations I’ve encountered. I never even expected my first post to be noticed, never mind receiving over 400 views in less than a week. I was humbled at the comments I received via Twitter, some even saying that I had inspired them to write their own blogs and share their experiences. One of my proudest achievements this year, by far. I thank every individual that takes the time to read my posts.

November 2013 – My dream came true. I embarked upon one of the best holidays ever, a week in Rome. I couldn’t have asked for it to be any more perfect than it was. Right time, right place and right company. I returned to the UK feeling refreshed, happy and knowing I’d never be able to enjoy coffee and pizza in the UK again, but it was worth it! Best week, possibly ever!

December 2013 – Going from not being able to talk to new people at the start of the year, to spending the weekend with someone I had only conversed with via Twitter and Whatsapp. (A female friend, FYI!) I also met other tweeters this weekend and had a fantastic time. I was actually surprised that I was able to visit Winter Wonderland, explore London and enjoy nights out with a completely new circle of friends. I told myself I would do more of this next year. I think I bloody deserve it!

Meeting my Twitter twin

Meeting my Twitter twin

Just by writing this, I realise that I have come a long way this year. Although I haven’t yet transformed into a butterfly, I’m not a caterpillar anymore. I think I am at ‘pupa’ stage, but this is a big achievement! In 2014, I look forward to being spontaneous, doing things out of the ordinary and bending the rules a little. I now understand the importance of self-worth, and I want this to grow in the forthcoming year. I won’t waste my time on those that don’t appreciate me, but I won’t hesitate to spend it with those that do. I will watch more movies, pamper myself, and even indulge in a bit of naughtiness. Why ever not? Someone needs to spoil me, and until I find the right guy, I’m happy to fulfill that duty!

“We cannot think of being acceptable to others until we have first proven acceptable to ourselves.”― Malcolm X

Happy New Year, one and all.

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