I am aware that January is almost over, but since I spent 3 full weeks on narcotics and prescription drugs recovering from a hellish tonsillectomy, I'm finally getting the chance to sit down and think about this new year. Back to Utah, back to my bed for the first time in a month, and without the medications, I finally have a clear mind.
As I reflect on 2012, I can't believe what an insane year it was. It was by far the most adventurous year of my life thus far. I traveled to five different countries -England, France, Spain (2nd time!), Canada, and Mexico.
I also visited 6 National Parks: Waterton Lakes (Alberta), Glacier (Montana), Yellowstone (Wyoming/Idaho), Grand Teton (Wyoming), Canyonlands (Utah), and Arches (Utah).
In 2012 I also visited 5 states - Arizona, Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, and Utah.
I spent a weekend at Lake Powell with my family, went whitewater rafting in Moab, camped in a secret underground hobbit house, hiked everywhere, and spent some time at my cabin, which is my favorite place on earth.
I saw 5 bears in the wild, caught a snake, tasted a fruit when I didn't know whether or not it was edible, played in a fountain, kissed under the stars, hiked to beautiful mountain peaks, saw Shakespeare's Globe Theater with my own eyes, and skinny dipped in the Mediterranean sea.
But 2012 was also the most soul-wrenching, comfort zone-shattering, heartbreaking year of my life. I lost the only job I'd ever loved, along with 20 or so friends. I lost my very best friend in Utah and don't know why. The man I spent 4 1/2 years planning my life with disappeared. I tore my hamstring and still can't sit in a chair comfortably.
I underwent the most major identity crisis I ever have. There were three aspects that made up me and my life in Utah: Matt, 24 hour fitness, and my editing job. In just a few months, life changed all of that for me. When I tore my hamstring, I couldn't workout or attend fitness events, which, prior to that point, had made up about 90% of my social life. I planned to become a certified Zumba instructor, but my leg had different plans. Then I wasn't hired back at the job I loved and nobody ever explained why. Then Matt decided to up and leave with no word. With the three main parts of my identity shattered, I had to pick myself up and turn into something and someone else.
At the beginning of 2012, and especially before my trip to Europe, I asked God for refinement. I wanted to be tested and stretched past my limits because I wanted to come out a stronger person. And let me tell you - He didn't take that request lightly; I asked for refinement, and that's exactly what I got.
2012 was full of adventures and heartache, cultural exploration, laughing until I cried, and crying until I laughed. I can't wait to see what 2013 brings!