So, it’s nearly that time again. Time to reflect on the past year, and look ahead to the one to come. I’ve seen many people mock this practice of looking back at the year gone by and making lots of predictions and promises for the year ahead, particularly in terms of new year’s resolutions. It’s completely true that if you really want to make a change, this could be done any day of the year..but the whole process of moving from one year into the next gives a good opportunity to stop and take stock of where you’re at. So, that’s what i’m going to do now, starting with a look back at my best and worst bits of 2016. (Apologies if this is not my most exciting post..writing this one to look back at 2016 for my own benefit..the next post about 2017 may be more interesting to read haha!)

2016 canvas Matt bought me for Christmas

So 2016..how was it? I’d give a mixed reaction to that one I think. There have been many, many amazing moments, but it’s been challenging as well. I’ve been lucky enough to travel abroad 4 times this year. Prague in January with Matt and my parents was lovely – great sightseeing, great company, and we even got lots of snow which made me extra happy.

Then there was Florida in April..what started out as a joking comment on Facebook sometime in 2015, turned into a fantastic, very memorable trip to Orlando with some very special friends. I still find it a bit surreal that it even happened…that Matt and I flew half way across the world (or near enough) with four of our friends who are roughly a decade older than us (sorry guys!) and their three kids under 5. It always promised to be a fun, crazy, yet exhausting holiday and I think it definitely lived up to all three of those descriptions! I am hugely grateful for the many memories made with people who mean so much to me..and thanks to Matt’s dreaded food poisoning incident (literally still gives me the odd nightmare!!) they all saw me at my best and worst (rocking in a corner in hysterics!!) that week. Just thinking back on the holiday makes me smile – from fun in the villa pool, to many fun rides (Matt’s horror at getting soaked on a Universal water ride, and me almost deafening Sharon with my screaming on the Mummy ride standing out a lot!), to Karen’s lost phone and Bath and Body works purchases ;), it was a great two weeks. Looking forward to repeating it someday…?!

Not only did I have these two fantastic trips, but I was fortunate to go to Tenerife for a week in June with Matt, and Sardinia with my parents for a week in July. Both of these were lovely, sunny, relaxing weeks in beautiful hotels and locations. Lots of good food, sunbathing and many good memories were made throughout the summer, particularly on these two holidays! It was great to spend some uninterrupted time with my three favourite people!

As well as many lovely holidays, I was very excited and grateful to be a bridesmaid at my lovely best friend’s wedding – it was a beautiful day, she looked absolutely stunning, and I had a lot of fun getting my hair and make up done and wearing a pretty dress! (Practice for next year too!!) I’m so happy for them both and was thrilled to be part of their special day!

Summer School this year was a bit of a different one. Lots of familiar faces weren’t there including many of the people i’d usually spend my week with, so I was apprehensive about going, but ended up really enjoying it. Since the friends I’d usually be with weren’t there, I had to force myself to be confident and speak to different people/be more sociable, to avoid following Matt around all week or hanging out on my own the whole time. I found my confidence definitely grew throughout that week and i’m glad I decided to go. There were some special moments for me that week both with friends and faith wise, which i’m grateful for, particularly as it may be my last! (We’ll see!)

One of my favourite points of this year was when Matt’s brother, sister-in-law and nephew spontaneously booked a trip from Australia back to Scotland for a few weeks. It was brilliant to unexpectedly spend some time with all three of them, particularly as it was right before going back into the stress of uni. It was a great end to the summer! 

Uni this year has had it’s ups and downs. I finally got some A’s in both coursework and exams, but I also got three C’s in my April exams. (I know that a huge part of this is because I had been in bed with the flu and an ear infection before/right through the exam period, but it’s still annoying!!) I did at least pass them all, so that’s something. I’ve found 4th year considerably more difficult than any level of studying i’ve ever done (which makes sense!), and have struggled to keep up or get to grips with it at times. Hopefully i’m heading in the right direction now, and December exams didn’t go too badly…or at least I don’t think they did!! I still struggle with the fact i’m into my fourth year and have like 1 friend and a couple of acquaintances – I hate that i’m not like other people in my year with tonnes of friends to see either in or out of class..whether that’s because I’m too quiet or didn’t try hard enough I don’t know, but it’s not always fun. However i’ve only got a few months to go.. yippee!!!

I’ve struggled a bit health wise this year. Nothing drastic, but detrimental enough to make my head a bit messy along with it. It’s not something i’m too comfortable talking about (so if you’re one of those people I moan about it to all of the time, you must be one of my favourite few haha!) but basically my insides are a bit temperamental and as a result, i’ve become a lot more anxious with it. (For someone who’s always been shy and got nervous easily, this isn’t fun!) I could write pages and pages about my annoying stomach and the associated anxiety that comes with it, but I don’t really want to. But if i’ve dodged your messages or have been difficult to make plans with in recent months, I’m sorry! I’m trying to get my head around dealing with my complicated insides and sometimes my head just gets a bit too messy. Something I really want to make better in 2017…the vicious circles of being anxious are really quite draining!

I had a lovely Christmas spending time with family – plus I was thoroughly spoiled, possibly even more than usual! It was extra special to spend some of Christmas Day with my gran, given that she’d been not too well in hospital in December. Was very grateful all round for how I spent my last Christmas as an Adamson! (Eek!) 

Overall though, 2016 has been full of lovely memories. I made a ‘Flipagram’ video earlier tonight full of pictures from this year, and there were so many lovely photos of lovely moments to choose from. I feel as if i’ve spent a huge amount of this year either moaning or complaining..either that I don’t feel well or that i’m stressed with uni work…but actually I’m hugely grateful for (the majority of) this year. The things i’ve struggled with have brought me closer to people, and it’s been one of those years when i’ve realised that it’s definitely quality and not quantity in terms of friends and family. I love the saying “it takes a village“, and I love the people who make up mine. I believe people come into your life for a reason and I’m grateful for everyone who’s played a part in my life over the past year – there are many people I would have really struggled without. I also think I’ve grown in confidence a bit again this year which is something i’m always trying to improve on. Anxiety may have held me back at times, but I think i’ve grown in confidence and maybe even self-esteem.

I’m going to write a ‘2017, looking forward’ type post maybe tomorrow, but i’ll end this random, biography type post with a Grey’s Anatomy quote (how else?!)

“Maybe being grateful means recognising what you have for what it is. Appreciating small victories. Admiring the struggle it takes simply to be human. Maybe we’re thankful for the familiar things we know. And maybe we’re thankful for the things we’ll never know. At the end of the day, the fact that we have the courage to still be standing is reason enough to celebrate. – Grey’s Anatomy”