accomplishments

A Look Back at the Last Year

My 29th birthday isn’t until next Saturday, but I think it’s close enough that I can get away with this post.

I have to admit there were times in my teen years that I never thought I’d reach 20, let alone 29, but yet here I am, still going strong, so I look forward to what comes next. I look forward to what my future holds. And I hope the coming year is filled with great moments that I will remember for the rest of my life.

Each year I take a look back to at the things I’ve accomplished throughout the year. To say this past year has been one of the best, but also one of the hardest, would be an understatement of epic proportions. Those closest to me know the struggles I’ve faced over the past year. Some days have been easier to handle than others, but with the love and support of my friends and family, I’ve made it through another year. And I’ve managed to keep my sense of humor intact, as well as my sanity.

Well, the sanity part is debatable, I suppose. It depends on who you ask. There are a few of my friends that think I’m a little nutty for working as much as I do, but that’s who I am. I don’t do well with downtime. I can’t sit still and do nothing. I feel lazy when I do, so I have to have a full plate at all times. Call me an overachiever. Call me crazy. Call me whatever you want. I don’t care. I’m happy with the person I am. And it’s taken my long time to get to this point, but it’s nice being in a place where I finally know who I am. I’m happy with the person I’ve become. That’s not to say there’s still not room for improvement because I know I can always get better. And I will.

What have I accomplished this year?

A LOT!!!

I released my first novelette A Second Chance back on April 12th, I believe it was. This wasn’t my first time being published; I was included in the From the Dark Side Anthology. However, this time around felt like the first. I was filled with a giddy anticipation that similar to the feeling I use to get on Christmas morning.

A Second Chance underwent significant changes from its original incarnation which was included in FDSA. And whenever I look back on its growth, I feel a sense of accomplishment. I think it turned exactly as it was meant to. There isn’t one thing I wouldn’t change about it. NOT ONE!

In addition to A Second Chance, I also published a short story titled Sacrifice. This is another one that I’m very proud of. Sacrifice forced me to step outside my comfort zone and tackle a pretty difficult topic, and I think I did well with it. I know some have expressed disappointment over the fact it’s not a novel, but I feel like I told the story as I was meant to. And as long as I feel that, I’m okay. It’s when I don’t think I did a story justice that I worry.

This past year also saw the launch of Frugal Maine, a website dedicated towards helping out my fellow Maine residents who are looking for information on frugal and green living, cheap entertainment options in and around Maine, frugal reads, working from home, etc. I did take a hiatus from it for awhile to focus on my personal writing, but I’ve since returned to it. And with the help of one of my best friends, Acadia from Superficial Gallery, I think it’ll get to the point I want it at — a one-stop shop for all residents of Maine.

This year I also appeared on two episodes of Podcaturday, a weekly roundtable discussion between Jennifer and James Melzer and Acadia. While this may not seem like a big deal to some, for me it is. I’m actually incredibly shy, and I have issues with stage fright. Granted, I’m not in front of an audience when taking part in the show, but it does cause the same feelings of apprehension in me. I end up not saying much. My second time around, though, was better than my first, and I know in time I’ll become more comfortable with the entire process. And to be honest, I’m quite anxious to get to that point.

Hm, what else? I did have a few new jobs over the past year that unfortunately did not work out in the long run. But that’s okay because not all will.

I also started a few other side projects that I’m excited about, and I’m anxious to see how successful they turn out.

So that’s it, pretty much, in terms of this year’s accomplishments.

What have I learned over the past year?

This is pretty loaded question because I’ve learned a lot. And some of those lessons were not so pleasant.

  1. Some people will always hurt you, no matter how much you wish it were different. So if you have to stay strong, no matter what, and keep telling yourself that things will eventually get better.
  2. Sometimes you have to guard your heart in order to protect what matters most to you.
  3. Sometimes you can only trust yourself to get things done. And sometimes that means leaving behind those that can’t keep up.
  4. Sometimes you have to trust others, even if you’re scared to because not everyone in life will hurt you.
  5. Sometimes you have to take a leap of faith and hope and pray that everything turns out exactly as it was meant to.
  6. Some people truly do come into your life at certain times and for certain reasons. (While I’ve always known this, it was reinforced again this year.)
  7. No one can make you feel inferior and not good enough, unless YOU allow them to. So don’t give anyone that power over you. EVER!

So that’s my past year in a nutshell. And here’s to the coming year and whatever it brings.