When I got online to check my grades for the first semester of my senior year, I was pleased to see I got all A’s and held a 3.2 G.P.A. It also hit me fully that I was coming upon the close of a long and amazing chapter of my life. I am now facing the second semester of my senior year and my very last semester of college.

I've always found the Christmas season and New Years to be a time of celebration, as well as a time of reflection.

3.5 years down and a few months to go until I walk across a stage before a thousand plus people, students, faculty, parents to receive my diploma in English with a focus in creative writing. It will be the close to a chapter—not to sound too cliché—and I will have written a book by the time I take the first step in the new chapter of my life.

In the last three and a half years I've been through a lot. There have been many twists and turns, some of which circled back on themselves, others going down paths I never expected.

I lost friends and made some new ones at college, friends I can rely on for anything. Some friends from freshman year I’m not as close with now, but they still hold a special place in my heart. We simply drifted because of our various paths in life.

I am not, nor was I ever, angry about the distance they way I fought and dismantled a childhood friendship after my high school graduation. That was a dismantling I refused to take part in a few years ago.

To continue with the clichés, those friends helped make me who I am. They taught me the importance of healing, forgiveness and learning from mistakes.

I reconnected with some childhood friends; others I no longer speak to.

I made mistakes and done things people questioned. I have learned from some, and appreciated all.

My professors have become friends and mentors in the last year. I have written probably close to three hundred pages and trashed over half. It was all part of the writing process. I'm now half way done with a book that I will finish for my senior project. It will be between 200-300 pages.

I lost an uncle to a car wreck. A cousin died of organ failure. And my brother had a daughter.

Now I'm starting a new chapter . . . .

My niece was seven months old at Christmas and will be a year old a few days after I graduate. My brother turned twenty-five on New Years Eve. It's been an eventful year.

The summer and beginning of my junior year, I never thought I'd meet a man I would spend the rest of my life with.

Yet I have. I'm newly engaged and looking toward a future spending my life with a wonderful man.

I've written ten pages in the week on my senior project, and will write more.

Here's to another great year!