2014: Hello, Goodbye!

Wow, man. This year has been huge.

Last year on New Year’s Eve, I was sitting on the couch in my condo, laid up with a kidney infection and just dreaming of what 2014 would be like. When Joel visited me in November that year, we decided we wanted to live together. And with that decision, 2014 was poised to be GINORMOUS with planning and prepping. But I had no idea how ginormous it would wind up.

Over the course of 2014, I:

  • paid off my credit cards for the LAST time (i.e. I cancelled all but one and cut up the card for the remaining account so I can’t use it, ever, except for the most extreme emergency.)
  • had an ultrasound that uncovered mystery spots on my liver and kidneys. The spots were non-malignant, but it scared the shit out of me. So I cut back on drinking by about 80%, and the spots shrank. Huzzah!
  • gained 10 lbs because I replaced alcohol with pizza and cookies
  • concluded therapy, which felt like graduating from Emotional Competency College
  • got to hug each and every one of my best friends (hard to do when all your friends are scattered across the United States)
  • discovered I actually want to have children
  • turned 30 (ugh, what?)
  • celebrated the birth of my newest nephew
  • moved to Australia
  • read 5 books (accomplishment!)

And here are some of the pictorial highlights:

I moved out of my condo and back into my parent's house. It was a sweet little place and I still miss it.
I moved out of my condo and back into my parent’s house. It was a sweet little place and I still miss it.
I got to play in so much snow. My dog, Lucy, and her sister Ellie, were almost buried in it.
I got to play in so much snow. My dog, Lucy, and her sister Ellie, were almost buried in it.
I got to work from home lots, because Virginia cancels everything for snow.
I got to work from home lots, because Virginia cancels everything for snow.
After I moved back in and stopped going out as much, I got to spend my Friday nights with my niece and nephew. It was the best.
After I moved back in and stopped going out as much, I got to spend my Friday nights with my niece and nephew. It was the best.
I celebrated my 1 year anniversary of Fixing Myself.
I celebrated my 1 year anniversary of Fixing Myself.
I loved on Ms. Lucy
I loved on Ms. Lucy
I got to enjoy lots of sibling time, which is hard since we're all so busy. Also, my dad has the best photo bombs.
I got to enjoy lots of sibling time, which is hard since we’re all so busy. Also, my dad has the best photo bombs.
I spent my summer bonding with my mom's old sewing machine as I made baby quilts for my expecting sister and best friend.
I spent my summer bonding with my mom’s old sewing machine as I made baby quilts for my sister and my best friend, who were due within a week of each other.
I cuddled with my brand new nephew, Henry, for about 800 hours.
I cuddled with my brand new nephew, Henry, for about 800 hours.
I took a field trip with my best friend Cara to our childhood home, Ft. Meade, MD. It had been about 11 years since either of us had been.
I took a field trip with my best friend Cara to our childhood home, Ft. Meade, Maryland. It had been about 11 years since either of us had been.
I got the sweetest typewriter in the world. It's still in the States, though. Oh, how I long for thee.
I got the sweetest typewriter in the world. It’s still in the States, though. Oh, how I long for thee.
I helped throw a Mad Scientist event. So good.
I helped throw a Mad Scientist event. So good.
I took an awesome road trip to Savannah, GA with my mom and her girlfriends. We stopped at South of the Border because of course we did.
I took an awesome road trip to Savannah, GA with my mom and her girlfriends. We stopped at South of the Border because of course we did.
I had an incredible time at my birthday/good bye extravaganza. It lit me on fire. Such a good weekend.
I had an incredible time at my birthday/good bye extravaganza. It lit me on fire. Such a good weekend.
I celebrated a year of wonderful with Joel.
I celebrated a year of wonderful with Joel.
I got in as much time with Bill Purray before I had to leave him.
I got in as much time with Bill Purray before I had to leave him.
I took my dad for his first pedicure on my birthday.
I took my dad for his first pedicure on my birthday.
I spent a fantastic 10 days with friends in Los Angeles before I left for Sydney.
I spent a fantastic 10 days with friends in Los Angeles before I left for Sydney.
I got to hang out with the newest edition to my Best Friend Family, Leah's daughter Elodie, who was born 2 days after my nephew.
I got to hang out with the newest edition to my Best Friend Family, Leah’s daughter Elodie, who was born 2 days after my nephew.
I bid a sad, but loving adieu to the United States on September 1st.
I bid a sad, but loving adieu to the United States on September 1st.
I was gifted Tobias Rexington, aka Fuji XM-1, and my camera life is forever changed.
I was gifted Tobias Rexington, aka Fuji XM-1, and my camera life is forever changed.
 I was, at long last, reunited with my luff.
I was, at long last, reunited with my luff.
I got to live the dream with a near $900 trip to Ikea.
I got to live the dream as Joel and I feathered our nest with a near $900 trip to Ikea.
I got to spend so many balcony happy hours with this handsome man.
I got to spend so many balcony happy hours with this gorgeous Australian.
I went on a billion interviews.
I went on a billion interviews.
I realized I've been drinking shitty coffee all my life when I got to Sydney. The Copper eMill is where coffee lives.
I realized I’ve been drinking shitty coffee all my life when I got to Sydney. The Copper Mill is where coffee lives.
I've seen so many beautiful sunsets.
I’ve seen so many beautiful sunsets.
I got to taste a little bit of home.
I got to taste a little bit of America.
I've mingled with the wildlife. And by mingled, I mean, ran away shrieking.
I’ve mingled with the wildlife. And by mingled, I mean, ran away shrieking.
I learned you can't always go home again.
I learned you can’t always go home again.
I mingled with more wildlife.
I mingled with more wildlife.
I have died a million sweaty deaths. I'll never take a/c for granted again.
I died a million sweaty deaths. I’ll never take a/c for granted again.
I've seen some kick ass storms.
I’ve seen some kick ass storms.
I wasn't kidding about the beautiful sunsets.
I wasn’t kidding about the beautiful sunsets.
I learned that not all bacon is created equal.
I learned that not all bacon is created equal.
I am now part of a registered De Facto Couple. :)
I am now part of a registered couple. 🙂
So many good happy hours.
So many good happy hours.
I saw gorgeous beaches, basically in our back yard.
I saw gorgeous beaches, basically in our back yard.
I've cooked more than I ever have in my entire life, and it's fucking awesome.
I’ve cooked more than I ever have in my entire life, and it’s fucking awesome.
I bought my blog domain--a first for me--and I discovered that beans on toast is white trash brilliance.
I bought my blog domain–a first for me–and I discovered that beans on toast is white trash brilliance.
I conquered my fear of bridge heights! (Maybe)
I conquered my fear of bridge heights! (Maybe)
I celebrated my first Christmas with Joel.
I celebrated my first Christmas with Joel.
I began to conquer my fear of the ocean, thanks to Joel.
I began to conquer my fear of the ocean, thanks to Joel.
And I fell in love harder than I ever thought possible.
And I fell in love harder than I ever thought possible.

For all the worry and anxiety I had over this year, and even though parts of it were so incredibly hard, I look back and I’m so surprised at how well it went, and how supportive and encouraging everyone was. I’ve been pushed and challenged this year, and I feel like I’m coming out on top, learning and finally starting to apply all those lessons learned. And I’ve felt more loved and alive than I have in a long time. I miss everyone back in the States more than I thought I would, but I finally feel like I’m coming into my own as a person. It’s a good feeling.

Long story short: what a transforming, awesome, kick ass year. I have a feeling that 2015 will be just as exciting–and maybe a little scary (see: applying for my Partner visa and taking control of my terrible eating habits {I just wiped melted chocolate off my laptop}). But I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

Cheers, everyone, and have a Happy New Year!

2 thoughts on “2014: Hello, Goodbye!

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