139 When You Realize It's Been a Full Year Already...

One more post before this and I would've been writing my 140th! For 2014! Damn.
This image is mine. Do not take without crediting.
I'll be heading overseas to visit some relatives for the New Year tomorrow, and hence won't have my laptop with me when 2014 knocks to do my quintessential "let's look back at the old year" post. Thus, here I am, doing it two days early! I'll be looking back at last year's post, to review how I've fared on my challenges and resolutions, and set some new ones for the year ahead.

(I apologize if the image above is super contrived. But I've never known a year ahead so void of schedule or certainty, so I'll need all the contrived luck I can get!)

Looking back at last year's post:

  1. "Things I'm worried about for 2013: A levels. That's just it, actually." And I was right to be worried! Not so much about the exams but its preparations. The papers flew by really quickly, and though of course there were days when studying was really unfruitful and laborious, one month on I'm quite prepared to say I'm proud of the effort I put in, and there aren't any regrets that come to mind right now. (I suppose I'll say differently when the results come out.)
  2. "I want to be content." I must say I actually failed on this one. What I have learnt is to deal with the discontented feelings as they come with a calm and rational mindset. That to be emotionally affected by heavy blows is perfectly alright, but letting them weigh you down is not. Also, that it is definitely not okay to carry others' crosses. 
  3. "...to continue wearing that red asymmetrical skirt." 'Smatter of fact, I sold it off yesterday. But I must say it has earned back its two years' worth of wardrobe place: most memorably, at Nanyang Homecoming two years ago! Also, oxblood (or 'wine', as it is now called) seems to be a perpetually stylish colour, though oddly enough not predominant in my wardrobe. 

Looking back at 2013:
Things I'm grateful for
  1. My family. For being the perfect sounding board for all my crazy ideas and emotions, for bearing through dinners when I was alternatively surly or unnaturally hyperactive, for not commenting as I consistently overdressed every Sunday (especially during A levels period), and for not saying anything when my shower playlist turned emotional. To put it lightly.
  2. Friends from every corner. I may not talk to each of you all the time but you have each of you been a crucial pillar of support for me at different times. For my 409 friends, for reminding me how to laugh at the silliest times; for my A14 friends, for going through our newest and strangest struggles together; for my ballet friends, for giving me a telescope to the world outside my school; for everyone else who has some way or another reminded me that life is a jigsaw puzzle and it's best not to get too caught up by one piece.
  3. The church. The heavily allegorical architecture of St. Mary's has lent me to my subconscious resolution for 2013: to find, in every Mass, something to reflect on. This has ranged from the day's Reading to even the words that are repeated every Sunday but fail to sink in: for example, the previously quoted "Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by your life", and even "Peace be with you." Finding these pockets of peace has been immensely helpful to get me through each week.

Things I've learnt
  1. You are never too good for anyone, or anything. Open your mind to make friends from every quarter, however much you may have written them off before. Same goes for pursuing interests.
  2. You're always going to know more now than you knew then, to rephrase Taylor Swift. In other words, there is no place for regrets, only new lessons learnt.
  3. Patience is a virtue. In lessons, in relationships. And hard work is always more fulfilling than none.
  4. You can't regret it if you were being true to yourself. You may be sad about the consequences but you can't truly regret them if they didn't arise from your actions. If someone else's beliefs and thought processes are responsible for landing you in your bad position, then don't be bitter, but don't cut yourself up about it either. Just move on. 
  5. You'll never know everything: about anyone, or anything. 

Looking ahead at 2014:
Things I'm worried about:
  1. Primarily, my A level results, and that of my university and scholarship applications. I only pray my hardest that this time next year will land me somewhere I am happy to be. But then again, that is one of the things I have learnt about myself: I am "stronger than I think", and that ultimately what is more important than where I end up, is what I make of it. 
  2. Where am I going?!

Things I want to learn:
  1. Don't compare yourself to the 2%.
  2. Stop being so harsh on yourself. Which is related to #1. This is my key personal goal for 2014. 
  3. Stop being so harsh on others.  Auntiedom can come at the cost of being hurtful to others, and that's something I want to avoid in 2014. 

(I don't know why but my descriptions all got shorter and shorter)
(Maybe because it's already midnight now)
(Or because I'm running away from the fact that my second 2013 resolution was to 'get fitter')
-I'll try to sleep earlier in 2014.

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