You've been catching a lot of flack these days. I've heard a lot of people call you the "worst year ever." Ouch...I mean, you did do some damage—terror attacks, mass shootings, public health crises, a tumultuous election—it was a year for the books. Still, a lot of awesome things happened too. Instead of focusing on one olympic swimmer's national embarrassment, let's talk about Katie Ledecky, who broke her own world record and nabbed four gold medals in Rio. Also this year, the U.S. Treasury announced Harriet Tubman would appear on the $20 bill, the unemployment rate reached a pre-recession low and the Cubs finally won the World Series. You weren't all bad, 2016.
Personally, 2016 was a mix of challenges and triumphs as well. I moved in with Sean in Brooklyn and fulfilled my lifelong dream of living New York City. I learned to savor tiny victories like coming down the subway steps just as the train is pulling in. (I also experienced those crushing defeats of arriving just as one is pulling out of the station.) I learned not to let not-so-nice people bother me. I was also pleasantly surprised by all of the Good Samaritans in a city with a reputation for being hard. I walked a lot.
I took big strides at work: I went to fashion week for the first (and second) time. I took my hand at styling the looks for several photo shoots. I traveled to trade shows in Atlanta and Germany—my very first time to Europe—alone.
Sean and I took an insanely decadent, all-inclusive vacation to the Dominican Republic. We also ate our way through Austin, TX. We hosted some fun get-togethers at our apartment, watched the fireworks from our roof on the Fourth of July, and re-watched the entire Scrubs series. We got a new puppy, who charms us with his sweetness and drives us crazy with his energy. We ended the year with Thanksgiving at my family's and Christmas with his.
Overall, 2016 was a year of enormous growth for me. I've been challenged and stretched in ways I never knew possible. It was a challenging year, for sure, but one that has left me in a pretty great place to start a new year. Here's to you, 2016!