Stella's Blog

What I Learned in 2019


I’ve never really been one for New Years resolutions. It wasn’t the idea of self awareness or reflection or goals that turned me off-but more so, the inability to follow through with them. So this year my only New Years resolution is to get better at making goals and sticking to them. 

2019 was filled with laughter and pain and tears and growth and joy and fun. This isn’t untrue of any other year, but stepping away from this year felt like closing a door. It felt like the last year of my childhood. The end of a chapter. Sure I’ve been 17 for 10 months. But entering this decade meant I couldn’t fall back on anyone. It was going to test my understanding of the words “independence” and “trust” and “growth”. It meant I could no longer shamelessly listen to the High School Musical soundtrack. Or have slumber parties. Or drink chocolate milk. Or lean on my mom for boy advice.Or maybe I still could, but would it be the same? The silly, trivial aspects of my life were the ones I for some reason, couldn’t shake saying goodbye too. It wasn’t the reality of going on my own that frightened me, but letting go of a sense of naivety and innocence still within me.

I’m stuck with a weird sense of guilt and fear matched with nervous excitement and overwhelming hope. And though it seems no-one likes to admit it, I know I will miss the simple things I take for granted everyday. I know a part of me (somewhere) will miss East Lyme High School. I will miss the bakery and my coworkers and sugar-raised donuts. I will miss car rides and drive thru coffee with my mom. It’s weird to think of New York City as home and not an escape. It’s weirder to think about visiting home. Maybe this is all hitting me out of nowhere because I’ve never confronted this vulnerable part of this situation. I talk a big talk about itching to get into the city and independence and adulthood and coffee and blah blah blah. I’m still vulnerable and nervous and nostalgic and naive. 

I know I’ll fall in love with the city all over again and I’ll be fine. But leaving this year made me realize as freeing as it will be to start my life, I’m just as nervous as anyone else. And maybe there’s nothing wrong with that. Here’s to all the laughter and pain and tears and growth and joy and fun 2020 will bring.

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