2015: A year of risks. A year of faith. A year of adjustments.
Moving to Paris wasn’t a piece of cake (where’s Marie Antoinette when I need her?). There were tears; of sadness and joy. I’ve been blessed in so many aspects of my life. MY SUPPORT SYSTEM BLOWS ME AWAY. You guys keep me strong. You keep me positive. I can’t thank you enough.
This wouldn’t be a New Year’s post without a compulsory list of highlights, low points, and resolutions. Leggo’
3 Happiest Moments 2015
#1 Accepting a nanny position in Paris
Kind of the “duh” choice but I was elated. Cloud 9. It didn’t seem real. How could it? If you’re curious to know more about how I landed this position, I wrote a blog post here.
#2 Seeing my hustle pay off.
I worked 55 hours a week between two jobs for 7.5 months. And I would do it all over again to be where I am today. Goals are amazing motivators, but seeing yourself achieve them…. well, that’s a whole ‘nother level.
#3 Seeing the Eiffel Tower lit up for the first time.
Ironically, this took 3 months of being in Paris. For about a week after the terrorist attacks on November 13, 2015, the Eiffel Tower was lit up in the colors of the French flag – blue, white and red. Looking up at that monument, I felt so much pride and love for the French people. I felt like one of them. This feeling passed (let’s be honest, sometimes I’m too American to function) but I still guard that precious memory.
3 Saddest Moments 2015
#1 My first Christmas away from home (more bittersweet)
It’s inevitable. By choosing to live abroad, I’m going to miss important events back home. Holidays, birthdays, weddings. I’ve missed the last 2 Thanksgivings, and this was my first Christmas away from home. I passed this time in Denmark, Belgium (visiting friends, traveling) and Paris (hosting a friend).
#2 Paris attacks
I posted the picture above with the following caption on Instagram, “I have a million things to save, but honestly I’m left speechless after visiting the memorials of the shootings here in Paris. My heart breaks for this city that I’ve grown to love so much.” I don’t think anything else could really can sum up my feelings.
#3 My Summer of Goodbyes
Thankfully, this summer has been goodbyes to people that I hope to see again. They were hard nonetheless. My family said goodbye to our f
oreign exchange student brother, Sebastian. Little did I know then, I would spend part of Christmas break with him and his family. The next goodbye was to my class at the daycare. I cried the whole drive home (and then some more at the house). And finally the time came for my family. They’ve been such amazing supporters. I love you guys so much.
3 Resolutions for 2016
#1 Discover countries #20 & #21
When I arrived in Paris, I picked a rather large goal. Every year, I want to have visited the same number of countries as my age. I’m going to fall short this year with #19 countries compared to my 20 years of age. But next year I already have plans to pick up two more (before my 21st birthday). I want to stay motivated and I think this is a manageable goal. It might take some sacrifice but that’s just how I afford to travel.
#2 Invest more in my blog
This blog has grown in importance to me. I treasure the ability to express myself and share my advice with others. I love having my own little corner of the Internet. I want to continue expanding and upgrading my blog – it’s become the perfect outlet for all my wanderlust vibes.
#3 Inspire someone, because someone inspired me.
Not only was I inspired by Gloria Atanmo, but she has befriended me. Literally. (See picture above.) Yes theoretically, it’s only an online friendship. But she’s incredibly genuine and continues to respond to my countless inquiries about life abroad, or life in general. Her blog is stellar and she released her first e-book this year! I read it in two sittings and highly recommend it. She has helped me (knowingly and unknowingly) along this crazy roller coaster of a year and I only hope that I can pass that karma on to another.
Deuces 2015! You were one heck of a year. I’m not sure if 2016 can out do you, but I’m certainly going to try. 🙂