May the new year bring you courage to continue to fight for the things that you want most in your life.
2018, it’s been a wild ride! In many ways, I can’t wait for 2018 to be over. While this year had a lot of wonderful things happen, this year has also been very difficult.
This year I left my job, friends, dance community, and the life I built in Atlanta behind to get married and move in with my newfound hubby. My husband travels from state to state with his dad (alongside a crew) installing paint systems for big automotive companies like Mercedes, Chrysler, Toyota, etc. Frank offered to move to Atlanta from the get go, but he’d have to take a huge paycut. As I wasn’t attached to Atlanta and Franklyn loved his job and working with his dad, I thought the best decision would be for me to follow him! I am like an adrenaline junkie for big changes in my life, and I love to travel so it was something I was up for. I knew it would be a hard shift and a big risk, but I was also excited about the opportunities! (And for the record, I still think it was the right decision.)
Then starting from the beginning of the year, we dealt with multiple family deaths, family members dealing with health issues, family divorce, three moves, and my own personal difficulties adjusting to our new life and being my husband’s rock (and him being mine). On top of it, we took a financial hit from moving, wedding festivities, quitting my job, and Frank working less hours due to all the events that took his attention this year. I think handling all of these hardships with “grace” *cough cough- and some uncomfortable convos/arguments*, made our relationship a lot stronger because we were forced to support each other in ways most couples don’t need to early in their relationships (we were only back together for 4 months before all this starting going down). Nevertheless, it was really hard. There were days I felt guilty for getting burnt out with the family tragedies, guilty for not making money, guilty for not being more proactive about getting a new job, guilty for being unsure about my next steps, and guilty for being missing parts* of my old life.
|Best of 2018||Worst of 2018|
|-Getting married and living with my best friend|
-Getting a bridal shower and bachelorette party
-Celebrating with family and friends
-Dyed my hair crazy colors
-Travel domestically (22 cities in US, 12 states)
-Travel abroad to Italy and French Polynesia Islands
-Honeymoon with my hubby
-Getting photo published in Notes from a Public Typewriter
-George Takei making our love story viral
-Article about us in MLive
-Free time to cook, clean, decorate, paint, draw, read, write, travel, take care of health, help family
-Choreographed a wedding dance
-Went to a few zouk events
-Went to our friends weddings as a couple
-Found a career mentor
|-Loss of loved ones|
-Family health issues
-Other family changes and struggles
-Periods of boredom, loneliness, fear, and self doubt
Key word is *parts,* because there were parts of my new life that I loved. I was a lot less stressed this year than I have been in the last 10 years, if not more. College was f-ing EXHAUSTING and while my job in Atlanta was a lot less stressful than school, I still taxed my body juggling work with partner dance (a huge passion of mine). I traveled a shit ton, stayed up really late, woke up early, and didn’t get sufficient sleep most nights. On top of it, I donated blood when I was in Atlanta, and while I was happy to do something positive, I developed serious anemia I had trouble shaking off (and still haven’t fully recovered yet). I constantly was out of breath, tired, faint, and had a vicious bout of pneumonia that kept coming back. All the stress in Atlanta was worth it despite it sounding pretty bad, but my body truly got the break it really needed this year to get healthy. I got regular sleep, made time to cook regular healthy meals, slowly got back into working out, and dealt with my other health problems I’ve been put on hold including getting a diagnosis for an autoimmune disease (Hashimotos and hypothyroidism).
I also had time to do other things I loved. I have had plenty of time now to draw, write, decorate and organize our house, and experiment with a bunch of new recipes. It’s helped my husband a ton because he comes home to a clean house and he feels so much healthier with the meals I’ve prepped for him, and I enjoy doing it all! (Well, maybe not cleaning.) I’ve also started a blog, started writing a fiction book (based on our love story), and have had time to help my family with different things when they really needed me.
We have also just had several super cool things happen this year! We got legally married at the end of 2017, then we moved in together in 2018. We also celebrated birthdays, traveled a bunch, had people visit us, choreographed a wedding dance we later performed, had our bridal showers, bachelorette/bachelor parties, our wedding celebration with friends and family, several friends weddings, and our honeymoon in Tahiti/Bora Bora. I also went to Italy with my mom and sister, went to a few zouk congresses, watched Frankie play hockey, went boating, and spent time with my family in their new homes on the east coast. On top of it, we got our photo PUBLISHED in a local book to Ann Arbor (which made is extra special because that’s where we both grew up) and we had a love story video of us go viral!
Most importantly though, I found the best partner I could have ever asked for. He gives me more love than any man ever has and he helps me with everything. If he’s at work, I’ll do things around the house. If I cook, he will grill. If I clean up the kitchen, he’ll clean up the garage. If he unloads things, I’ll unpack. When he’s sick, I’ll take care of him. When I’m sick, he’ll make things easier on me. We do fight at times, but our fights never last longer than a half hour. We are so different in so many ways, and I’m still trying to figure out how to navigate my new life while fulfilling my unique needs and desires abut I am glad that we chose the path we did. It hasn’t been easy, but it’s been worth it.
As far as next year, we have three goals as a family. They are to boost our health (physical, mental, emotional – for Frank, it’s probably more physical and for me, it’s just find my passions again), improve our finances, and grow our family (I mean seriously we both are in need of some puppy love). I also have a few personal goals, like find a way to make income (no matter how large or small, whether online or part-time), grow my blog, finish my book, and just stop procrastinating and get a good schedule. Hopefully, the next year will be less chaotic. Goooodbye 2018, hello 2019! We are looking forward to you!