Reflecting on My 2019 New Year’s Resolutions & Making New Ones For 2020

At the end of 2018, I wrote 2019 New Year’s Resolutions where I listed my goals for the incoming year. I’ll be honest with you- I forgot I even posted that until yesterday. I figured today I would go back and see if I succeeded with any of them.

2019’s Resolutions

Life

“Give myself more time to relax”

I knew I needed a lot more me time so I did all I could to make that happen. I gave myself breaks from going out with friends and family as a way to decompress from everything. Sometimes that meant staying in bed all day watching tiktoks and other times it meant writing content and planning out upcoming months. Very soothing.

“Don’t push things off until the last minute (plans, school, etc.)”

Oh, I’m the best at procrastinating, so I promise you no adjustments were made here. Just this last semester, I waited until the day before a final project was due to even look at the assignment. Cool, right?

“Get active”

I sort of got there. I do a lot of walking, and I did some exercising for a little while, but nothing crazy. My sister, Rianna, and I have talked about going to the gym more this year, so hopefully I’ll get that squared away.

“Do something out of my comfort zone”

I tried my best in 2019 to do things I wouldn’t usually do and it was a lot more difficult than I expected. Anxiety is a bitch, as I’m sure a lot of you know. But I actually am very proud of myself for the progress I made in 2019. I went to concerts with my sister and made new friends, both of which are usually terrifying to me.

“Be more confident in myself”

In 2019 I learned that this may be up and down for a while. Some days I loved myself and had so much confidence and other days it pained me to look in the mirror. If I look at things accumulatively, I suppose I was a bit more confident in myself in 2019 than the year prior.

“Read more”

I definitely read a lot of textbook material this year, but not a lot outside of school like I originally wanted to. It was one of those things where I just couldn’t find the time to open a book that wasn’t poetry.

“Journal”

I gave up on that one pretty quickly. I journaled whenever I was going through things and it helped me get over whatever was going on, but I never really journaled about positive things.

“Take lots of pictures”

Oh, trust me, I nailed this one. I love taking pictures to capture moments. I have so many pictures from the past year! I also have a lot of videos!

“Eat healthier”

I was back and forth with this one. Some days were good, but then I’d go into a dark hole filled with potato chips and chocolate bars. Yikes. I’ll do better this year. I promise!

“Drink more water”

After I got myself a cute reusable to take to all of my classes, I was never without water. I kept hydrated pretty easily and my skin thanked me. Now if I go a couple days without drinking lots of water, you can tell by the inevitable volcano-like pimples I get on my face!

“Stop using plastic straws”

I did really well for a while with this one by carrying my reusable metal straws with me wherever I went, but then it became a chore and- sad to say- I failed. I’m trying again in 2020, so we’ll see if I do any better this year.

Blog

“Follow a posting schedule”

I was able to do it for a while, but life got a little chaotic and I stopped. It was on/off for a few months, but I still got posts out at least a couple times a month, I think.

“Only post what makes me proud”

I’ve gotten better at making sure my content is something I’m truly proud of instead of what I think I should be posting for either clicks or approval. I think I’ve really narrowed down how I want to run this site and what kind of media should be on here. 2020 will bring a lot of changes!

“Be more confident in my writing”

Some days I was, others I wasn’t so much, but looking back at all I got posted in a year, I’m very proud of myself for keeping up with it more than I had any year before.

“Post at least once a week”

Haha. Well we all know that didn’t happen.

“Meet more fellow bloggers”

Yes! I met so many awesome bloggers who I’d consider good friends of mine now! They helped me figure out where I was wanting my blog to go and what I would have to do to get there. They’ve also given me a lot of inspiration and motivation.

“Take risks with my work”

I definitely took a few risks with things I wanted to do with my blog and some really paid off. I also made a lot of plans for things that I want to do that will take more time. But I guess the idea for said “risks” were made in 2019, so I’ll count those too.

2020’s Resolutions

Life

Eat healthier

Go to the gym

Devote more time to my studies

Gain more confidence in myself

Present myself in a kinder light

Donate a lot of my clothes that I don’t wear anymore

Travel

Blog

Venture into other types of content

Share more photos

Write about unique experiences

Follow a regular posting schedule

Do something huge

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Paying Homage to 2019

Can you believe this is my third year writing my yearly recap? I can’t!

So for those who don’t know, at the end of every year I like to highlight some of my highs and lows of the year (see Paying Homage to 2017, Paying Homage to 2018). I started in 2017 as a casual post, not thinking I would keep up with it the following years. I always consider the third time to be what establishes something as a tradition, so here we are guys! It’s officially a Megann Louise tradition!

In last year’s recap, I said I was going to make 2019 my bitch. Well, we win some, we lose some, right? Whenever I look back on this year I get a bad taste in my mouth. I know a lot of great things happened, but I also experienced a lot of heartache. I’d consider this year to be one of great growth for me.

At the start of the year, I got to see Cody Ko and Noel Miller live with my sister and friend James. Their Youtube videos were what got me through a lot of hard stuff so it was wild that I was in the same room as them.

In May I finished my first year of college at CSU. I ended up making the Dean’s List, which I would not have expected at the beginning of the year. I finally decided on the right major for me in that time too- communication.

I moved out of my first apartment in May, too. It was the ending of an era, I suppose. That place became my home. I made so many wild memories in apartment 509. As sad as I was leaving, I felt a weird sense of relief too. I was leaving behind a piece of me, which was sort of sad, but I knew I was starting a new chapter.

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In July, I surprised my sister with a party for her 18th birthday. It was pretty last minute, but all her friends pitched in and helped me make things work. I was so grateful for everybody’s help in making it such a success. Being able to do something like that for my sister was so special to me.

Then there was a bump in the road. I said goodbye to a nearly two year relationship. Things just don’t work out sometimes and it’s for the best. I still have a ridiculous amount of love and respect for my ex. He’s a great guy…. just not my soulmate. And that’s alright. It took me a while to move past the heartbreak, which is to be expected when you were with someone for a long time. He is genuinely one of my best friends and I’m so lucky to still have him to confide in whenever I need him. While some would expect me to be sad that the relationship ended, I’m glad that I’m still lucky enough to have a friend in him.

For a while after the break up, I was in a really dark place and couldn’t seem to find the way out. I didn’t feel half as confident as I once did. I suppose it’s normal (but in no way healthy) to dog on yourself after a break up… at least for a little while. After I was finally able to get myself out of bed, I was going out to get my mind off of everything. That’s where the fun came in.

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First, we went to see Granger Smith. The story behind that one is a little random. We had gone to Walmart and there were two tour buses in the parking lot (which obviously isn’t a normal thing). Turns out Granger was at Walmart! We didn’t get to see him there, but we took it as a sign that we should buy two tickets to the show that was only hours away.  I have to say that that was one of the best nights I’d had in a while. The rush we felt after buying the tickets was insane. We immediately ran to get ready and blasted Granger throughout the house.

The very next night, we were invited to tag along to a Foreigner concert. I didn’t know too many songs (I know, what’s wrong with me?!) but I still had such a good time. I think that’s one of the first nights where I was able to fully drop every bad thought at the door and enjoy myself.

In late August, I moved back to Cleveland with my little sister for school. We got a new place with two other roommates that’s a lot nicer than the one I lived in the year before. I started what is the second semester of my sophomore year. Rianna, my sister, began her first semester as a freshman! The semester came with a lot of adjusting for us both and somehow we made it through all of the headaches.

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For the second year in a row, my dad, sister, and I went to the Cleveland Air Show. When I was little, my dad always talked about taking us. Then finally last year, we got to go. I’ll be honest- I didn’t think I’d enjoy it all that much. But it was so much fun, that I was jumping up and down over getting to go again this year. I’d love for this to become a tradition!

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To reward ourselves for kicking butt the first few weeks of school, Rianna and I went to our first Cleveland Indian’s game! I’ve never been a die hard baseball fan, but the atmosphere was so fun and I really enjoyed myself. I was still trying to recover from a lot mentally so that night was a breath of fresh air for me. Fun fact- I also bought my first legal drink at the game!

School got progressively more challenging and I went into a downward spiral. I started doing things I swore to myself I would never do. I just lost control of who I was. That’s when I reintroduced myself to faith. I let myself stray from religion in the past few years and by coming back, I felt myself finding closure and motivation to overcome everything I was facing.

Then I did something out of my comfort zone. After having several deep talks with my friend Kaleb, I found motivation to share my story. I went live on Instagram. I came clean about everything I had been feeling because I hoped being transparent would not only help me, but help someone watching. I was open about things that most people would consider taboo. Laying it all out on the table really helped me see the bigger picture. I even got some super sweet messages from people who watched to livestreams. There was so much support and understanding. It was beautiful. I don’t imagine I’ll ever get over that.

Shortly after, I reconnected with a friend I made during my first semester of school at CSU. We got lunch and caught each other up on our lives. We both had some wild stories to tell and a lot of laughs to share. I was really excited to have this friend in my life because he was absolutely hysterical and genuinely a great guy to be around.

I’m so excited to be saying goodbye to this transformative decade. I’ve got a lot of goals for 2020. I want to make it a year of hard work and big steps. I refuse to end 2020 in the same place that I start it. It’s time to grow, baby!

Thank you to everyone who stuck around for another year as well as those who stumbled upon my site this year! You guys make each and every year so special. I hope you all have a magnificent new year and get all you want and need!

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2019 New Year’s Resolutions

First and foremost, happy new year everyone!

2018 was an amazing year for me. After being on and off with my writing, I made me official “return” to writing for MegannLouise. I slowly eased back into things and by the end of the year, I was comfortable enough to participate in my first Blogmas series. 12 days of writing was extremely tiring, but it didn’t scare me off. Now I’m here in the new year, still keeping up with my writing!

Every year at around this time, we are bombarded with people’s New Year’s Resolutions. I know we’re all thinking, “yeah right” every time we see one. Well, I usually don’t make resolutions because I know after the first couple of weeks I’ll give up on it (like I gave up on writing for a while). However, this year I’ve made a list of goals for this year, and by sharing them with you guys, I will feel like I’m being held accountable and I can’t give up on them. So without further ado, here is my list of goals for 2019!

Life

  • Give myself more time to relax
  • Don’t push things off until the last minute (plans, school, etc.)
  • Get active
  • Do something out of my comfort zone
  • Be more confident in myself
  • Read more
  • Journal
  • Take lots of pictures
  • Eat healthier
  • Drink more water
  • Stop using plastic straws

Blog

  • Follow a posting schedule
  • Only post what makes me proud
  • Be more confident in my writing
  • Post at least once a week
  • Meet more fellow bloggers
  • Take risks with my work

 

Thank you all for an amazing 2018 and “return” to writing. I can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store for me. Hopefully it will be even better than the year before!

I hope everyone has a healthy, happy, and love-filled 2019. ♡

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Paying Homage to 2018

A year ago today, I posted Paying Homage to 2017, where I took time to look back at everything that happened to me in 2017 that influenced me deeply. I said that I had an eventful year, and I was looking forward to 2018. However, I couldn’t have possibly been prepared for all that this year had in store for me. Let’s go ahead and look back at all that has happened in the past 12 months. Be warned- a lot more happened this year than last year.

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I celebrated the new year with my boyfriend, Zach. We started off at my God Mother’s house, then after a trip to McDonald’s minutes before the ball dropped, we made it to my house. I wanted this new year to be rung in perfectly, so I ran to the tv as fast as I could and got ready for the count down. We made it just in time to eat a few chicken nuggets before we shared our first New Year’s kiss.

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After working at Boys and Girls Club for about 5 months, I decided to resign. I’ll keep it professional and not go into too many details, but to sum it up, the employees were not kind to me and I felt that my voice was no longer being heard. It was extremely hard for me to do, as I loved the students I got to know. The smiles on their faces made all the hard work and sleepless nights worth it. However, I knew that I would continue to be treated poorly and for my mental health, it was time to go. I’m still very unhappy with how I was treated and how nobody really seemed to care when I told them, but it’s in the past and I just hope that things have gotten better there.

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The day before my last day of work, I came home to my sick hamster, Arodite. She had been looking sickly for a while, and I wasn’t sure what was wrong. She barely ate and didn’t drink much water. The only way I could keep her hydrated was by letting her chew on a wet washcloth. It was devastating. This day had been extremely hard for her. She wasn’t moving around much, staying close to her tower of bedding she created. That night, I was in the living room with my mother when we started to hear breathy cries from the room Arodite was in. I was too nervous to check on her, so I asked my mom to see if she was alright. She said, “oh, she’s crying.” Then, just as I got up to comfort her and give her some water, my mom corrected herself.

“No, don’t come in here. I think she’s dying.”

I know I should’ve ran in there immediately and held her in my arms, but I was so heartbroken that I couldn’t face her. I ran outside and refused to come back into the house until she passed. My father, who once worked at the county’s Metroparks, put my sweet Arodite down in the most humane way he was taught. I could hear her crying and gasping for air as I cried outside.

I’m so grateful for my boyfriend for coming over late that night to be with me while I cried. I was so upset that my fuzzy little baby had passed and there was nothing I could have done to save her. It was just her time to go.

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As some of you know, my boyfriend was a grade below me in high school, so he had his senior prom this year. I dreaded going because I wanted nothing to do with high school events such as this, but I was obligated. It was a nice time back with friends that I hadn’t seen in a while. Zach was the absolute sweetest to me that night. We danced for hours, then left a little early to get Wendy’s. After we finished our food, we headed to my house to relax. That’s when Zach gave me a book he made of reasons he loves me. Reading it made me cry like a baby. I was so sappy and lovey all night. All I wanted was to be cuddled up with my man. I don’t think anything has changed.

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A couple months later, Zach graduated high school. This was a special moment for him and I couldn’t go without sharing. I was so extremely proud of him, and as he walked across the stage to receive his diploma (from my dad, the V.P. of the School Board), my friends and I screamed and cheered. I ended up crying a few times too.

Being alongside him while he was working to get his diploma made it that much more special to me. I watched him get frustrated when he didn’t understand something, excited when he did, and relieved when he was on track. I knew he was ready for greater things and seeing him get that green light to do so was powerful.

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After a long, painful few weeks of bickering and disagreements, Zach and I broke up. I was devastated. But it had to be done.  Of course I was hysterical for months. I begged him to come back, but thankfully he said no. I say “thankfully” because we weren’t ready for each other yet. We needed some time to grow ourselves. Although there were many nights that I sobbed into my pillow and screamed until I lost my voice, I am grateful for our break up.

But here’s the thing- while we were broken up, we were still seeing each other. We wanted to maintain a friendship, since that’s where we started. He would come over and we would talk, or we’d go to the park or the lake to get away from everything. It was nice spending time with each other because he was such a huge part of my life for so long. It was comforting. So that is why we say that although we did not have the title of boyfriend and girlfriend, we were still “together.”

I felt the need to explain this to everyone because people were confused when we split, and even now when we say we’ve been together for over a year. Although we were not boyfriend and girlfriend for a couple months, we were still talking and loving each other just as if we were.  We like to say we never left each other’s side, so that’s why we say we’ve been together the whole time. We basically were. What’s a title worth anyway?

Since the breakup left me with many open days throughout the summer, I got to spend a lot more time with my friends and family. I got to go to my sister’s travel softball tournaments that were hours away, which was a great way to relax. Well, until my sister’s team lost, which was quite often. But getting away from the small town I felt trapped in was wonderful. I felt myself growing just from a weekend of being away. When we got back, my dad offered to take some pictures of me to boost my confidence and keep my mind off things. And that’s when this photo was taken. I really love all the photos he took of me because I feel so strong when I look at them. I see myself not letting things hurt me.

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My friends also deserve a huge “thank you” for all they did for me over the summer. They were always there for me no matter what. Whether I was canceling plans because I couldn’t gather myself enough to leave my room or shaking and crying in public, they understood. We got to make great memories together and I couldn’t be happier.

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I spent my last day as a teen this year. My 20th birthday was hot, exhausting, but so much fun. My best friends took me to the zoo and to dinner. I complained the whole time because it was scorching hot and my feet hurt, but the memories created that day were special enough to last forever. At this point, Zach and I decided to get back together, as we found it impossible to live without the other in our life. So I invited him to come with us to celebrate. Having all of my favorite people together was magical. It was a great way to spend my last few days at home before going away for college.

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On August 17th, I moved into my first apartment. I had never lived on my own before, so I was terrified. I know so many people who were nothing but excited when it came to moving out and that made me feel awful for the way I was looking at it. I thought I was babied too much and I was going to hate it, but after some getting used to, it was the best decision I had ever made. I love living by myself. I have so much more motivation to do things because nobody else can be held responsible for the end result- just me. Oh, I also went blonde that same day after battling with my dark hair for months. It came out sort of yellow, as to be expected, and it took months of toner and purple shampoo before I was able to get it to a subtle blonde. It isn’t the cutest yet, but it’s getting there.

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August 27th was my first day of school at Cleveland State University. I was extremely nervous because I had only one semester of community college under my belt and I had no idea what to expect. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t get lost as soon as I got off the bus that morning. It was overwhelming, but after the first traumatizing day, I knew exactly where everything was. I was really surprised when I knew where I was going on day 2.

Now, with a semester at CSU under wraps, I feel amazing. I’ve made so many great friends in the short time I’ve been going here. I found myself exploring things outside of my comfort zone and realizing my potential while being in college. It’s crazy. Tom Hanks once said that he was “exposed to this world that [he] didn’t know was possible” and that’s exactly how I feel.

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Although this past year has been full of ups and downs, it has been the most influential. I got to see what I could and couldn’t handle which ultimately taught me life lessons. In the midst of it all, my love for my best friend grew and grew. Our relationship grew, too. After this rollercoaster ride of a year, I am very happy to say that Zach and I are as amazing as ever. We got through all obstacles life has throw our way with our heads held high. Our love for each other motivates me everyday, and something tells me it just might motivate me forever on.

2018, you were good to me sometimes…other times, not so much. But while I was going through my low points, I recognized all of my good points. I became grateful for all I had and all I would have. So thank you for giving me that ability.

2019, you’re going to be my bitch. I’m not holding myself back anymore, and 2018 taught me how to do that. I will learn from my mistakes, build off them, and prove how strong I really am.

Last year, I said that 2018 had a lot to live up to, but in all honesty, all coming years have a lot to live up to because I’ll only be going up from here.

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Paying Homage to 2017

2017 is coming to a close, and judging by the millions of Odyssey articles I’m seeing on my Facebook newsfeed, a lot of us can agree that we took some brutal hits this year. My 2017 was full of bumpy roads- trials and tribulations. But with only a few more days left, I’ve looked back and been utterly thankful for the year that changed me more than I expected it to. I realized that the Meg that is walking out of 2017 is not the same Meg that walked into it. And it’s one of the most beautiful, fearful, and magical things ever. So 2017, this is for you.

I came into 2017 with the intensions of making the year one of my best yet. Ah, “young and naïve” some might say. But don’t we all have that goal when the new year hits?

However, I was not as lucky as I had hoped I’d be. A few months into the new year, I lost a boy that I thought was my world. Looking back at it, I was relishing toxicity. I thank God now for removing me from the position I was in. Although it taught me a lot about myself, I know that I was not meant to remain stagnant in false hope.

Shortly after, I experienced the most stressful event of 2017.

Graduation.

Actually, let’s back up just a little.

Finals.

I was a senior in high school, and these finals determined whether or not I would graduate. A lot of my fellow classmates weren’t even slightly worried because they had accumulated a grade that would assure their graduation. I, however, did not. Since I spent most of my senior year obsessing over a boy who, as we addressed earlier, was not made for me in the slightest, I did not devote the proper amount of time to my grades. This was especially true about my Advanced Math class.

At the end of the semester, I realized that if I didn’t do extremely well on my final, I would not pass the class and thus not graduate. I studied for weeks and suffered from long sleepless nights. I started doubting myself in every aspect of my life, making myself feel worthless and uneducated. However, I came to class and somehow- BY THE GRACE OF GOD- passed my final with flying colors.

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Ok, so graduation. Just thinking about it gives me anxiety to this day.

Growing up, I looked at graduation as the beginning of my adult life. So naturally I was extremely excited for graduation day. The day was already special, but to top it off, my father gave me my diploma. I was overjoyed and proud of everything I had accomplished to have obtained my diploma.

But then, as I was walking out of the high school I spent four chaotic years in, I got a somber feeling. Everything that I grew up around was over. I spent so long sitting next to the same familiar faces and rotating through familiar daily routines. Now it was coming to an end, and the “beginning of my adult life” was officially commencing. Panic took over my thoughts.

“What if I can’t get a steady job?”

“Where am I even going to college?”

“What’s my major?”

“Will I end up living with my parents forever?”

But I eventually got myself on the right path, and I decided that I want to major in Education. Children are so pure and amazing and working with them makes me feel like I am positively impacting someone, which is all I ever want to do.

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Summer 2017 is what I like to refer to as the transitioning season. I made a lot of new friends who mean the absolute world to me, and I also lost friends. However, I regret nothing. I was able to mature, grow, and become someone completely new. I wouldn’t have it any other way. The friends that I will take on 2018 with are the best that I could ever ask for. They’ve become my brothers and sisters and I love them whole heartedly.

I was also hired onto a team of amazing people in September. Boys and Girls Club hired me as a part time Youth Development Professional, which is one of the best things I have going on right now. I work in a middle school alongside three AMAZING coworkers who have more or less turned into family. They have been my rock, and always support me. I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given through Boys and Girls Club. I get experience with the age group I want to teach, and I’ve gotten to work in so many different schools. The children I work with give me so much inspiration and even directly motivate me to do great things.

I chose to attend community college for the first two years because it would be completely paid for. It was the smartest option for me financially, and it also allowed me to keep in touch with friends and family easily. Fall semester was full of headaches. Well, technically only one class was, but it was such a huge headache that it carried over to my other classes. But I loved every bit of my first semester. It was challenging at times, but it kept me excited to learn new things. After four years of high school where most things felt like review and repetition, college introduced me to hardcore learning. I read my textbooks all the time, took notes any chance I got, and studied my ass off (except for in the headache class. Fuck that class).

By being home, I was able to support my younger sister in marching band in the fall. Even when I was a cheerleader, I was able to sit in the stands at halftime to watch her perform. But it felt different this year. It was awesome getting to watch games in the stands instead of cheering on the sidelines. It was a whole other world to me, which was sometimes upsetting. I missed cheering with my girls. But I still came to every game I could to cheer on my Alma Mater, as well as my best friend. Yeah, so let me introduce some of you to him.

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This is Zach, my boyfriend.

He moved to my school in January as a junior, and I absolutely hated him. He seemed to push buttons that I didn’t even know I had. But I eventually grew to love him. He was super funny, even though most of the time I laughed at him rather than with him. We became best friends within a few months, along with some of our Speech classmates. We later deemed ourselves the “Speech Squad.”

After graduation, we drifted apart for a bit. I still supported him as a friend, but we just didn’t communicate as much as we used to. But as football season approached and I remembered he was playing Varsity, I decided to cheer him on alongside some of my best friends. We jokingly made Z-A-C-H shirts that we would occasionally wear to games to be those people. He seemed to enjoy it so we kept it up.

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Towards the end of the season, Zach and I had completely reconnected and somehow admitted that we were attracted to each other. It was something I had kept a secret for months. But after admitting it, we both felt like we had stepped in the right direction. Although this decision came with some pretty brutal consequences amongst our friend group, we began dating. Now we are two months in, and I couldn’t be happier. He is definitely my favorite part of 2017, and the number one reason I refuse to spit on the year and all it did for me. I am absolutely in love with him.

Now, to conclude this homage, I would like to address those who despised their year. Whether you had the best or worst year yet, it changed you. It shaped who you are now. And that is something that we all must take into account.

2017, thank you for all you did for me this year.

2018, you’ve got some competition.

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