Happy New Year!

Wow, 2019. Crazy, right? I so distinctly remember NYE of 1999 when Y2K was still being widely considered as a legitimate concern. I was 13 years old, going into the second semester of my 8th grade year, and was anxiously waiting for midnight with my two best friends. I was gleefully excited to run outside and scream into the night at the stroke of twelve ... but also partly worried that the world really might actually end because, computers.

Well, joke's on me because right now the world exploding into a shit-crusted ball of fire and ash seems like more of a possibility than ever before.

So what are my new year's resolutions?

To blog more.

Just kidding. I won't.

But really, I love going into the new year with goals and aspirations. You can make a positive change in your life at any point in the year, but the perfectionist in me really appreciates the idea of a blank slate and a fresh start. It soothes my soul in a way that only a brand new notebook and unsharpened pencils can.

I thought back to some of my previous new year's resolutions, or "goals" as I prefer to call them. I can recall a few years back, sitting at a friends house on NYE and sharing our hopes for the new year. With a bunch of confidence that came from somewhere in myself that I didn't recognize, I declared, "I'm going to run my first marathon."

And I did.

2019 Courtney wants to weep at the memory because being able to run for four hours on end feels like such a distance memory, but it was one of my life's proudest accomplishments and it was a promise I made to myself on new years.

Obviously I won't be running a full marathon this year, but I did nervously sign up for my next half marathon last weekend. It's been over a year since I tackled the 13.1 mile distance and come hell or high water, I will run all 13.1 of those damn miles.

I also decided I want to Marie Kondo the shit out of my house. I'm intrigued by the idea of only surrounding yourself with things that bring you joy. Strange to think that something as insignificant as a scarf could bring a person joy, and yet I fully subscribe to the idea that the things you own should make you feel good and serve a purpose (even if that purpose is "I feel fabulous wearing this"). And I like the idea that you shouldn't own things just for the sake of owning them. It's been a tough pill to swallow because trying to simplify my life is forcing me to come face-to-face with the reality that I've wasted a lot of money over the years, but better to know now than later, I guess.

You know those Pinterest photos of houses where the walls are all white and there's like one potted plant in the corner? That's #goals, to be honest.

This year I'm also putting in extra effort and energy into letting go of the past. It took my entire young adulthood to realize how much baggage I was carrying around, and I didn't even hesitate to hoist it over my shoulder and bring it with me into my 30s, and I'm just so over it. Working with a therapist has been invaluable to me over the past year and I cannot stress this enough: It is okay to feel icky and bad. It is OK to not be okay. It is okay to ask for help and I urge you to find someone to talk to.

I learned a few hard lessons this year, one of the biggest being that sometimes people don't want to or just can't give you what you expect, no matter how reasonable that expectation might be. There were a few instances where I let my guard down, got vulnerable, and shared (and overshared, tbh) some of my secrets. My admission wasn't acknowledged and I felt like someone had stripped me down naked and threw me out into the street for everyone to see (like, in the middle of January when I don't have a tan). It was embarrassing and I wanted to jump into a hole and hide forever.

When that happened I wanted to be angry and defensive and withdraw, but after a lot of reflection, I realized it was okay. I don't need anyone to validate what I've experienced. I don't need to hear, "Oh, that's terrible" to know something is terrible. As much as I may want it at times, I don't need sympathy.

The world can't have a superhero that's stuck in their own backstory. It's what you've become in spite of it that matters. There's no victory in staying broken.

*cue credits to Dr. Phil*

But of all the goals I've set for myself in 2019, the two biggest are to start a journal of gratitude and a journal of affirmations (check and check). Why? Because I'm a mother effin' unicorn filled to the brim with light, rainbows, and amazingness. And so are you.  

I'm tired of holding myself back and standing in my own way. The world truly opens up for us when we truly start to believe in our own power and embrace it.

Let's do this, 2019.