I have to start off by saying that 2014 was probably the best year I had in a while. It was definitely the most life changing year by far; so many wonderful things happened to me, so many incredible moments that I will cherish forever.
It's safe to say that 2014 has completely altered me forever, for the good. On December 31st, of every single year, I would look back on the past and hope for a better one in the future. When 2013 ended, I was content with how it went but there was something inside me that said 2014 is my year.
I could proudly say it was.
Everything I have ever wanted happened in 2014. As good as it was, it was a big reflection year and I know 2015 is going to be just as challenging, in the best way possible.
Between traveling out of the country for the first time, becoming sorority woman of the year, graduating college, getting my first job...I can't even begin to explain all the life changing things that happened this year and all the lessons I learned. Some things I knew already and were just reaffirmed this year and others I was learning for the first time.
1. Always say 'I love you': Back in February, my dad had a massive heart attack and the doctors said there was no way he'd make it. It was the worst two days of my life and I've never felt pain like that. I've never been so scared. He made it through and it really opened my eyes that life is very short and you should always say how you feel, don't hold back, and make sure the people you love know it. Also, never be afraid to say 'I love you'. The best things come from those words and hearing them never fails to make you good.
2. Work for what you want: Ever since I was a sophomore and I became a sister of Phi Sigma Sigma, I wanted to be sorority woman of the year. It's a special honor given to one Greek woman every year and I wanted it. I wanted to make a change to Greek life at Iona and to my sorority and this was the year I did. I never did the things I did for recognition, I did it because I cared. Getting this award proved that hard work does pay off and if you just do things you love, people will take notice.
3. Open yourself up, be yourself: There are always going to be people who love you for who you are. Whether it's in a romantic way or just in friendship, be yourself. There's no need to put up walls or pretend to be someone you're not. If people really care about you, your true self will be enough. I was lucky enough, this year, to see that firsthand. Also, if you love people for who they are and never try to change them, everyone wins.
4. The unknown is scary: Graduating college is the scariest, most exciting thing that will ever happen to me. As you know, I'm a Type A planner and organizer. There has never been a moment of my life that has not had a plan a, b, and c. That all changed on May 17th, 2014. The day I walked across the stage at Madison Square Garden and became an Iona alumnae. I didn't know what was coming next and to be honest, I still don't know what's coming. Becoming comfortable with the unknown future is the biggest lesson I learned, but it's also something that I'm still struggling with. I don't like not knowing what's going to happen but it's life and we have to deal.
5. It's never too late: By the time you're a senior in college, you have your set group of friends. Whether you go to a huge university or a small liberal arts college (like myself), you may feel like there's no need to expand your horizons. I learned the complete opposite this year. I cannot begin to explain how many new friendships I formed this year that have effected me more than words. From my best guy friends in my favorite fraternity, to the boy who I have admired since freshmen year, to my senior year roommates and my new sorority sisters...2014 was the year that I realized it's never too late to form a friendship or a relationship with someone new. There will always be someone new who can teach you something about yourself...or about life.
2014 was incredible. I met new people, formed new friendships, found out a lot about the type of person I am and want to be, and realized that the future is a scary place but if you have people who love and support you, you'll be okay.
Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2015 treats you just as well as 2014 treated me :)