Throughout 2019, I fashioned my approach to the first year of my thirties after the spirit of living life with unbridled enthusiasm, as embodied in the whimsically wonderful film 13 Going on 30. Oh, how I wished to be thirty, flirty & thriving!
And for the most part, my 2019 did thrive! I worked hard, played hard, followed my heart, felt every emotion, and lived life to the fullest. The people I cherish most entered new phases in their lives – marriage, parenthood, birthdays, relocation, and other big life milestones – and I celebrated with them. I entered my 30s by living life the way I always wanted to live it – daringly, in full colour, and with no regrets. From meeting an Idol to surviving Oktoberfest, I really began to see that everything happens for a purpose and anything is possible. I got rid of what was weighing me down by downsizing, minimalizing, and turning towards ethical choices. I embraced the things that sparked my joy (thank you, Marie Kondo). I found myself getting more in tune with my health, fitness, mindfulness, and other elements of inner wellness and self care. I was open to trying new things, exploring new parts of the world through travel, exploring new sides of my self, adding new communities and new people to enrich my life, and coming back to being comfortable with my own company once again.
I won’t lie, there were also many disappointing, unresolved, and aggravatingly slow moments faced during the year, leaving me with more ‘to be continueds’ to be continued than I had wanted by the end of the year. But being in a constant state of development gives you things to look forward to evaluating, working on, and fighting for in the new year. Having this balance of achievements unlocked and works in progress keeps one grounded and motivated.
Not only was 2019 the end of my twenties, it also marked the end of a decade. I have fully accepted that deviating from that 10 year plan I had in mind at the beginning of university is more than okay. A decade later, I’ve learned that it’s more about designing a life you love by letting go of should dos and shouldn’t dos, throwing caution to the wind, and finding yourself through trial and errors.
At the onset of the decade, I started compiling annual scrapbooks as a way to record and remember what I loved, what I experienced, and what I learned every year. As I have discovered from looking back at my scrapbooks throughout the last 10 years, those moments that seemed so small at the time get bigger in scope when you step back and see it all as important markers on your personal timeline. You start to recognize the pivotal moments, the turning points, the changes, and the evolution. I have come a long way since my terrified self at 21, and now looking back at 30, it’s remarkable to see how different life is now. This decade was all about transformation:
2010: A Year of Recovery
2011: A Year of Growth
2012: A Year of Exploration
2013: A Year of Bravery
2014: A Year of Change
2015: A Year of Making It Happen
2016: A Year of Survival
2017: A Year of Persistence
2018: A Year of Becoming
And now, as I close Chapter 2019: A Year of Thriving, I’m already excited about stepping into the unknown of the new decade that’s ahead. Hear me roar, Roaring 20s!
Throughout the year, I’ve been compiling a page of memories from 2019 — including notable experiences I had, concerts I attended, music I listened to, movies I watched, television shows I followed, and books I read — and now the time capsule is complete! Check it out here at Scrapbook 2019.