By the time you are reading this, I will be 19 years old. Which is bittersweet, in its own way. Am I too young to feel like I'm getting old?
My 18th year was the most revolutionary one of my life. My most alive year of living. I will forever be grateful for the things I experienced, learned, and grew from in my last year of teenagerdom (or is it my first year of adulthood? I don't know, don't ask me these questions).
This was my coming-of-age year, not only legally, but emotionally as well. In my 18th year, I made lasting high school memories with my closest friends. I screamed on Disney rides with my senior class and threw my graduation cap in the air when it was all said and done. I hung up my dancing shoes and had to leave behind my lifelong passion and sport. I underwent a painful surgery and made a healthy recovery. I said a tearful goodbye to my home and moved to a different state for college. I made fantastic friends and learned that it doesn't matter how long you've known someone for them to become some of your best friends. I began studying in a field that I'm passionate about and got involved with organizations at school. I achieved my goal of becoming a writer with a fashion publication in college. I traveled to new states and countries, danced in ocean waves and rang in the New Year with a kiss. I road-tripped with friends and made many late-night memories.
I did all these things and more (some I will never tell), and now have to say a somber goodbye to my favorite year. The negatives of this year were prominent and could have instead been my worst if I'd focused on those aspects, but that's not what this life is for. There have most definitely been years where I've let negative experiences consume me and affect my wellbeing for months at a time, and I have no intention on making the same mistake. I've learned that the only way things stay interesting is to have the ups and downs. They say life is too short, and I can't believe how 18 years have already flown. So life, bring on this new year (but seriously, no rush). I'm lucky to have come this far and I'm excited to travel the road that lies ahead.
Here's to this year and many, many more. To life and living it to the fullest, every second of every year and every day. Eighteen, I'm thankful for the learned lessons and the countless memories. Nineteen, you have a lot to live up to.
"Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary." - Cecil Beaton