A Year In Review | Farewell 2017
Hello Friends. You've been forewarned - today's post is going to be a little bit different.
If you've been a longtime follower of my blog, you'll know that my style and my writing and what I choose to blog about has changed over the past two years. It's crazy to think that I've even had this blog for that long! Lately, I post a lot of designs and wallpapers and as much as I love doing that, I miss actual blogging. I miss writing long posts. I miss writing about topics that matter to me. Since writing and sharing my experiences is a very carthartic process for me, I decided to bring that back to my blog. As much as I love design and illustration, I also want to showcase my writing and create conversation among my readers. I've scattered throughout this post some of the happiest times of 2017 - moments I will be forever grateful for. So - let's begin.
Just like that, 2017 is almost over and my life has changed in ways that I always dreamed but never believed it could. I moved across the country, my family grew, I started a new job in a new area and made new friends. It all sounds so ideal and I am unbelievably grateful for all that has come my way but I can't deny how difficult those changes have been.
The first half of 2017 was bittersweet. I ended my Disney College Program (which I never believed would make such a huge impact on my life), I moved back home, and I landed what I thought was my dream job. For a while, I thought I had it all figured out. What very few people ever knew was that for the last year and a half I'd been struggling heavily with anxiety and depression. I kept feeling like no matter what I was doing I still wasn't "succeeding." I had found a full-time job in my field (close to home and with full benefits) and completed this amazing (albeit stress-inducing) internship with the Walt Disney Company but I was still struggling with a long distance relationship and was quickly realizing this job was not all I had dreamed it would be. I just felt like no matter what I had accomplished it still wasn't enough.
I was constantly stressing about money and how I was going to be able to afford to see my boyfriend, and save up to move out, and all these other trivial things that kept popping into my head. No matter what I did I still wasn't happy and everyone could tell. It wasn't long before I was actually let go from my job because I wasn't needed anymore. Maybe I wasn't doing as good a job as I thought I was, maybe they could tell I wasn't happy, or maybe it was both. Even though I wasn't happy there I cried. Getting let go sucks. It's kind of like getting dumped. However, as soon as I got home and I told my parents I stopped crying. I remember laying on my bed and my mind, for the first time in months, was blank. I wasn't overthinking. I wasn't stressing. It was almost like I was at peace. At that point I resolved myself to one thing: I'm going to find a job in California, I'm going to move closer to my boyfriend, and I'm going to create a life for myself.
Watch more about my experience moving across the country below
At this point you might be thinking: "Becca, why didn't you just dump your boyfriend if long distance was stressing you out this much?" Well, dear reader, because you don't just give up on people when things get hard. Edwin and I had already been through so much together that I knew in my heart this was who I was meant to be with. Don't get me wrong - sometimes I look back at our relationship and wonder how we did it. However, before you know it you're friends for years and dating for years and you just do it. Edwin has been nothing but my biggest supporter. Which brings me to my second half of 2017.
I visited Edwin and his family in July shortly after I had gotten laid off and had resolved myself to apply for jobs and drop off resumes wherever I could. I was still scared and I was nervous because I knew I really only had one shot to nail interviews and it had to be on this trip. Long story short: I got hired at the Costco. Sure, it wasn't a job in my field but it was a job! You see, after many arguments with my parents we'd settled on one thing: I wouldn't move to California unless I had a job. True to their word, as soon as I got back home, they helped me pack my things, helped my ship my car, and dropped me off at the airport a mere two weeks after I had returned from my trip. Sometimes, I feel like this was the best way to do it - just rip off the Band Aid and get it over with. Other times I wish I would've had more time with my family and friends. But, for how long can you say good-bye? I had to leave.
So I moved. I loved being so close to Edwin and his whole family and it made the whole process of transitioning much smoother. But, then my anxiety kicked back in. I was struggling at work, I was struggling to make friends, I missed my family, I was living in a house that wasn't mine, etc. The idea that I wasn't doing anything with my life and that I wasn't reaching my full potential kept haunting me. I wondered "Is this how it's always going to be?" You know, the one thing I did right was build an amazing support system around me. My mom, Edwin, his mom, and my friends - they all do nothing but encourage and build me up. For that, I will never be able to thank them enough.
I have my good days and my bad days. Everyone does. And at the end of everyday I'm still proud of myself and of my choices. I still chose to love myself despite my emotional breakdowns and self-doubt because there are people that love me. I must be doing something right. Amidst all this chaos I chose to rebrand my website, begin my path down design & illustration, and pursue a dream I'd had since I was a little kid. It's been rocky, and my anxiety has definitely inhibited me from reaching my full potential, but It's been amazing all the same.
If I could sum up all of 2017 in one word it would be: change. It was the year of changes for me mentally, physically, and emotionally. There's still so much more change to come. Never, ever, base how you think someone's life is going just by the pictures they post or the statuses they write. Beneath all my happy times I still struggle greatly with my own inner demons. Day-by-day I conquer what I can and I have a support system to help me when I can't.
My personal goals moving into 2018 is just simply to love myself a little more, spend less time overthinking and caring what others think of me, and doing more of the things that scare me. Simple enough, right? As for this website, I have HUGE plans. I plan to reopen my shop, work on some exciting projects, and create a space I can be proud of!
My hope for you, dear reader, is that you achieve everything you ever dream of in 2018. I have so many beautiful, talented, brilliant people in my life that I get to call friends and I wish every one of you nothing but happiness. Oh yeah, and don't let anyone ever tell you your dreams are stupid.