I’ve said many times that 2016 was the worst year of my life, and I still stand by that. It was a year that swallowed me whole, left me traumatized and alone, depressed and scared. This year though, was a year of recovery. If 2016 hallowed me out, then 2017 was about finding my way to being a full human again.
So here’s a list of top 5 moments that made 2017 a much better year than last. Even if it wasn’t the best year ever, it was still a year of progress and I’m thankful for every moment and every person that made that progress possible.
1. She made her first big girl purchase.
I’ve never owned anything that was completely in my name. Even when I was off in Dallas living on my own my apartment had my grandma as a cosigner. Since my credit was nonexistent I really didn’t ever have an option to be completely “on my own.” This year though, after building up credit and saving my money for a down payment I was able to buy a car completely by myself. At the time when I was signing all the papers, and getting my car loan in order it didn’t really feel real but as soon as I drove off the lot a huge rush of joy filled me up. I turned up the radio, and screamed. I’ve had a lot of setbacks, dropping out of college, moving home, losing my independence but this? This finally felt like I was making progress back to being a full time adult.
2. Being alone won’t stop me from having a good time.
Last year I bought a ticket to go see Halsey in concert. I had no one to go with so I was planning to just ride it out solo. Unfortunately, I chickened out and ended up just hanging out at home, ticket wasted. THIS YEAR THOUGH, I traveled to Austin to see a Korean band I really like. I vaguely knew a couple of people from twitter who were going but had never met them in real life so I was showing up alone, in a city I’ve never lived in to see a band that I’ve love. I was extremely nervous, I’d never been to a concert by myself before and this time around I was actually going to wait outside the venue all day so that I could stand near the front for the show. I showed up to Emos in Austin at like 7 am and got in line with about 30 other people for a show that wasn’t starting until 7 pm. It was a tiring, wild experience but I was able to make friends with people in line and ended up having one of the best concert experiences ever. This really taught me that I don’t need to be with someone I know in order to attend events for things I’m interested in and that was a really freeing lesson. I’m looking forward to more solo experiences in 2018.
3. California made my feet hurt but my heart happy.
This year my friends and I went to California for E3, a huge gaming convention that was opening up to the general public for the first time. Since gaming is one big way my friends and I stay connected this convention was a big deal for us. My favorite section by far from E3 was Nintendo. We got to play with a Nintendo switch and try out the new Mario game and wow I fell in love. The entire Nintendo area was just so colorful and gorgeous and put the rest of the convention to shame. After E3 we explored the Santa Monica pier and also got to spend a day at Disney. As a huge Disney lover this was probably my favorite day even though my feet were dying by the end of it. Overall, it was a great trip and I’m so thankful I’m able to travel with my best friends.
4. So I told my mom I like girls.
High key, I’m going to write an entire other post about this but it deserved to be on this list. This was the year I finally came out to my mom that I was bisexual and that was a huge deal for me. It was a step into fully accepting who I am and having my family accept it as well but like I said, more on this later.
5. My brain is finally back to being normal.
Towards the end of the year I was able to finally say, “You know what? I’m doing okay.” The past couple of years have been hard on my mental health. I was trying to overcome depression, trauma and loneliness but this year I think I finally conquered those demons. I’m sure it will be an on going battle, my depression isn’t suddenly cured but I finally feel equipped to handle my emotions. I’m no longer swimming in a sea of despair and am actually looking forward to my future, something 2016 Kendyl could never imagine.
So there you have it, my top five moments of 2017. I’d like to thank everyone who made this year possible, my family, my best friends and the random strangers I’ve met on the internet. If 2017 was a year for recovery, I hope 2018 will be a year for success, whatever that may mean.