Let’s face it, 2020 was quite the year for all of us. It was unlike any year I have ever experienced and was filled with many highs and some very low lows. There were small victories and large victories, tears, laughs, meltdowns, and growth. 2020 taught me more than I could have imagined and reminded me to cherish those I love most. While I was physically distanced from most, I virtually connected with friends and family more than I ever have, which I’m so thankful for. 2020 was REALLY tough for many of us, but I want to encourage you to celebrate your successes, no matter how big or small. We made it through a tough year and that alone is a lot to celebrate this year. With that, I am going to celebrate some of my big and small successes from 2020 and encourage you to do so too!
- I finished grad school and received my Master’s in Public Health. Although I didn’t get to physically attend my graduation ceremony, I got to virtually celebrate with friends and family.
- We spent a few weekends at Lake Powell, which felt somewhat “normal” as it is our summer tradition every year. It was nice to get away and spend time in the sun and on the boat.
- Spent more time outdoors with family. We celebrated my birthday at Page Springs Cellars and it was so nice to spend more time outdoors. Charlie and I made sure to self isolate and always got tested before spending time with our parents.
- Stood by one of my best friend’s side as she married the love of her life. We visited Portland and Washington, which were both so beautiful to explore. It was so special to celebrate their love and also see my college roommates!
- We bought our first home in Arcadia, AZ and it has been such a fun adventure! We closed on September 3rd, spent an entire month doing renovation projects and finally moved in on November 15th.
- We celebrated our first wedding anniversary in Sedona and stayed at Poco Diable Resort, which is where we got married. We were supposed to have been in Hawaii that week, had our tickets booked, hotel rooms, booked, etc. and cancelled due to COVID. We ended up going back to Sedona, which was so special! We hiked Boynton Canyon Trail in Sedona, went to dinner at Mariposa, and relaxed at Poco Diablo Resort.
- I lost 20 pounds! Going to grad school while working full-time put A LOT of stress on my body and I didn’t prioritize my health at that time. I made an effort to eat clean and move my body for at least 30 minutes every single day. I didn’t let the gyms closing stop me and continued to do at home work outs throughout the year.
- I became an epidemiologist, which has been a career goal of mine since I took my first public health course during undergrad. I continued working the COVID-19 response full-time, which has been both challenging and rewarding.
- I became an aunt and met my first niece! She is absolutely beautiful and has brought so much joy to all of us since her birth.
Now, let’s talk 2021
I honestly feel like 2020 was such a blur that I haven’t had much time to sit back and think about 2021. I am usually looking to push myself harder each year and quite frankly, I am looking to do the exact opposite in 2021. 2020 was filled with little to no days off, many 12-14 hour long work days, working weekends, little sleep, and mental exhaustion. I hope 2021 brings more days off to rest and more connections with others. My goals this year may seem small, but I am ready to take the year to re-cooperate.
- Move my body for at least 30 minutes each day
- Read at least 10 books
- Read my daily devotional
- Make my mental health a priority (sleep, take days off, rest, etc.)
- Spend more time connecting with others
Here’s to a New Year and fresh start!