Today I turn 24-years-old. I am in shock that I am this old already. I can vividly remember when times were much more simple, and my days consisted of going to school, watching tv, playing with my friends, and trying to fit in. Granted, I thought my life was hard back then because I didn’t know better. Now that I am almost approaching my mid-twenties (wtf) I know that I am blessed beyond belief. So much has happened to me in a year. I’ve grown mentally and emotionally and so much has changed. You don’t realize how much can be different in the year ahead, but looking back I’m proud of who I am on my 24th birthday. A year ago today I was a college senior presenting a project in Italian class, dreading every second. Since that day I’ve had an internship that gave me experience for my future career and actually introduced me into the blogging world. I also overcame my anxiety even more than the years before. In the past year, something in my crazy mind finally clicked. Looking back on my life and the things I missed out on due to anxiety I am saddened. I know though that everything happens for a reason, and I was put in those situations to make myself stronger in the long run. Since my last birthday I’ve tried so hard to fight through my feelings of anxiety and do things that make me apprehensive. Granted, there are just certain situations that are tough for me, but I’ve also learned to look on the bright side of life and be proud of myself no matter what.
In a year I’ve grown as a writer, and a person. I started blogging in August and haven’t looked back since. I’ve had a lot of ups and downs, wanted to give up a few times, but through it all I’ve persevered because this is what I love to do. I am a writer. I love to write because it enables me to express myself in a way that I can’t through speaking. Being an introvert my entire life, I’ve always been on the outside looking in which has ALWAYS bothered me. But now, for some reason, it doesn’t as much. I’ve realized that being an introvert is actually a blessing in disguise, for me at least. Being on the outside and not the center of attention I’ve gotten the chance to watch people interact, socialize, and see the type of person they are. People watching for so long as made me an extremely empathetic person. I can put myself in the mind of others and try to understand their behavior. It sounds a bit strange, but it is something I love about myself. I love that I truly consider the feelings of others, and I make sure they don’t ever feel as I did at my lowest point.
Overall, on my birthday today I am just really happy. I have the most wonderful, Prince Charming of a boyfriend who I love with my whole heart and makes me the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. I am thankful for him every single day, and in a year our love has only grown stronger. I am happy to have an incredible, loving family who accepts me for who I am and always supports and loves me. I am thankful to have the friends I do, even though I don’t have loads and loads…the few I have are very special to me. This birthday I am happy with myself and that’s the greatest gift in the world.
If you or someone you know suffers from anxiety, please know it gets better. It may seem as though there’s no way out, because anxiety is a big black hole. But there is light on the other side, I promise you that. Once you can separate anxiety from your soul, you’ll be able to fight it off whenever you feel it coming on. Anxiety isn’t who you are. It’s just something you fight with, so don’t get discouraged. It can go away if you put up a fight.