As much as I have to bash 2016, and there is a lot, not all of it was terrible. Sure there were moments where I found myself crying on the floor, wishing I had my best friends, and wondering where exactly I had messed up. But there were also handfuls of moments where I literally paused to take everything in, because I knew that it was those moments that would keep me going as things got tough.
Because social media is such a part of our lives now, I started using Instagram this year to document my life. Big moments like birthdays and ordinary days spent running errands have all been photographed and cataloged in a way that tells the story of my year from the best possible angle. So what better way to review my year than to pull my favorite Instagram photographs and remind myself why I found the moment worth photographing.
Oh January, the month we all go into with all these goals and dreams, not realizing the shit storm that hits once the new year motivation is over. In my case, an actual storm hit my city, we called it Snowmageddon. My month was spent surviving the weather and travelling home for the first time since I move to the city.
Highlights: my DC women's group, all my friends who always answered my calls
February I really caught my stride, with my women's group getting larger every day and my resolution to see at least one concert a month finally kicking off. I threw both a Super Bowl and Valentines Day party, plus finally started feeling a little like myself again.
Highlights: those awesome seats I snagged for the Muse concert, eating heart shaped pizzas with a bunch of single girls
This month was spectacular! One of my best friends visited the city and right in time for the cherry blossoms to bloom. I spent my time working long hours at the firm to save for my birthday trip and was committing more time to my blog.
Highlights: who knew I would enjoy Coheed and Cambria, cherry blossom season
Everything changed this month. A coworker found some of my old articles and managed to make me feel super uncomfortable about sharing my life online, which led to me dropping writing due to fear of her judgments being right. I also started dating a guy who was all wrong for me at the time, but it also led to something that wouldn't really start up until the early summer.
Highlights: traveling back to the early 2000s and seeing Good Charlotte live, that first date which lasted 11 hours
I visited my sister in her new Texas home, while things back home were getting more serious with the guy I mentioned previously. This month was mostly going to a lot of events, working more late hours and managing the start of a new semester. All in all, I was busy as hell, too busy to notice I wasn't being taken seriously in my almost relationship.
Highlights: breathing the same air as Beyonce, then flying back to DC and being front row at X Ambassadors
The stress of balancing everything led me to kind of unplug from social media, plus I was ashamed that I had quit on my blog yet again. Once I dumped the guy I quickly had more time for the things I cared about, like booking that birthday trip I spent all those hours at the office for. In the process of all of this I grew close to my now boyfriend, who agreed to take care of Max (my cat) while I took a much needed vacation.
Highlights: the night I spent painting and watching Shark Tank for hours, not needing to wear five layers anymore
I can't say enough good things about this month! First off, I spent my birthday on the beach with my best friend who was a total rock to me throughout my breakup. Then I came back from vacation to quickly fall for my now boyfriend, who I realized was basically me in a man's body. July was spent getting to know him while exploring all the city has to offer during the summer.
Highlights: snorkeling in Cabo, ending up at the ER with my date
I wouldn't call myself spontaneous, but for some reason August was a big month for making decisions I didn't completely think through. First, I decided to go on a road trip to Maine and Canada with my very new boyfriend. But a few days after booking the trip I also told my boss I would be quitting. so yeah, I booked a vacation days before putting in my notice. Call me crazy, but I don't regret a single thing.
Highlights: celebrating two years in DC, finally getting a high score in my favorite pinball machine
I've travelled pretty extensively in my life, but no trip has left me with a bigger desire to go back than my road trip to Maine. I spent a week on the road taking photos of the most gorgeous sites next to a guy who let me control the radio 90% of the time. New semester or not, September was a blast.
Highlights: pulling over on the way to Canada only to find a hidden waterfall, spending two hours climbing down a mountain while ugly crying
Halloween is my favorite holiday, which is why this month was marked by a lot of pumpkin decorations and taking photos of my boots and fallen leaves. I also took a course on Instagram with a local DC blogger, which motivated me even more to reach out to local brands in the city when it comes to my blogging.
Highlights: finding a ticket to Philadelphia for $1, the leaves, all the leaves
With the results of the election starting the month off on a rough note, I focused more on my women's group to plan events to get everyone together in the days following the results. I also attended one of my favorite concerts of the year, Elle King, where I was no more than five feet away from her. Now that I wasn't working I had all the time in the world to focus on school, and maybe a little extra to take a trip to Texas for the holiday.
Highlights: voting for the first female presidential nominee, visiting a real life Christmas tree farm
I took this photo yesterday before the polls closed. Before I knew I'd wake up in a country where my position as a young woman of color would feel like a disadvantage. I wrote a caption thinking I'd wake up honored to have voted, but instead I've spent the day crying with my mom and sister, angry that so much of our country turned its back on us. I'm going to keep the caption I wrote, because one day I will wake up knowing that my future daughter will have someone to look up to, and not just the idea that something like that is possible. 〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰 Eight years ago I was a normal 16yr old completely obsessed with Hillary Clinton. I wanted her to win the nomination to help me believe I could accomplish anything I set my mind to. She lost, but unlike so many of us she faced the possibility of rejection again. Eight years later and I still have the sticker I bought with the little money I had at her San Francisco rally, but from now on when I look at it I'll be happy knowing history has been made, again 🙆🏻📮🎉🇺🇸🙋🏼 #imwithher #survivingour20s
This month is always a little tough for me due to my being so far from friends and family. Now that the feeling of freedom had faded, not having a job to go to left me with a lot of free time to fill. I rediscovered my love for libraries, and worked extra hard to make my home feel well, like home. Somewhere in between I managed to get multiple job offers for my first counseling position, which I will start this January!
Highlights: reading for pleasure again, spending Christmas with someone who otherwise might be alone on the holiday
I hope you all have a wonderful and safe New Year's weekend. If you shared a year in review post share it below, otherwise comment below one of your favorite moments!