Towards the end of every year I usually like to reflect and then write a list of a million things I could have done better in hopes that maybe ‘one day’ I will accomplish what I want to do. Basically a pity party of ‘I could have done better’.
Only now I realised that this year has been different. Like really different. In a matter of 12 months, I conquered more than I have in my whole 28 years of existence. You see, when you are bound by fear, you let it blind you of any vision. You can’t see past the next 24 hours or the next hour depending on what kind of day you’re having. My life leading up to now has been a chaotic mind mess EVEN as a Christian.
Thankfully last year I decided that 2016 was going to be my year. I still don’t really know what that means but I know I kicked butt.
First off, I do not encourage everyone to do this without your doctors advice and guidance and in saying that, I stopped taking anti-depressants for my anxiety. YES! A big deal. A very risky deal and I do not encourage anyone to do this without doctors guidance. I am FOR anti-depressants as they helped me cope for the season I needed them. It was a long and painful journey for me to even find the one that worked well but I couldn’t stand being reliant on them and the only way I was going to start finding victory was to face it head on which was petrifying considering I was about to travel for 4 months abroad but I did it. Which leads me to my next point.
After Dad died last year I knew I had to travel. He always repeated to me “Go travelling, Sarah. Travel, Travel, Travel”. Since I had pretty horrific anxiety, I never left the country. I never went on holidays except for a couple trips to the east coast but I never made time for me. So I decided to sign up for one of the best trips of my life and ended up going to 3 countries! 🇳🇿 + 🇺🇸 + 🇲🇽
In the State of Maryland, which is on the east coast of America, I embarked as a Camp Counselor for 3 months at a camp for those with disabilities. It was the most wonderful, hard working and rewarding experience. The days were super long, jam packed and tiring. Sessions were 7-12 days long and it was 12+ hours of work. We slept in a cabin built in 1937 surrounded by wildlife. Yeah, it sounds lovely but mice & bugs were your roommates and bears and deers roamed the woods right outside your doorstep. It is not as glamerous as Disney make it out to be! but through the hard work and sometimes sleepless nights, we provided the best time and atmosphere for every single camper. I encourage every young person to do it. It will stretch you, challenge you and change you in the best possible way.
The perks of being at camp were the cities I got visit while on our break: BALTIMORE, WASHINGTON DC, OCEAN CITY, PHILADELPHIA, PITTSBURGH, NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY, ORLANDO, LOS ANGELES and a surprise trip to MEXICO after camp ended! Yes, beautiful Mexico.
I could write so much more about my year but it is impossible without making this the longest post ever to written. So I will finish off with this…
Last year I wrote that I wanted to be: FEARLESS, TRUST MORE, LOVE MORE.
I can humbly say that I did all three. Travelling to a country I’ve never been to before for 4 months opens your eyes and it shifts your thinking. I came back from my trip bolder than ever, I knew and loved myself more and was able to pursue things I’ve never thought I wanted to pursue.
Next year, I pray that I continue to be fearless. I pray I continue to love myself so I can love others. I pray I continue to learn more and open my mind to bigger and greater things. I pray I never shrink back to the girl who let anxiety rule her life.
So long, 2016! You were the best year yet 💋