A Love Letter To 2017

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2017 was filled with heartbreak, travel, and independence, love, and lessons learned.

At first, I didn’t want to write a year recap. Everyone writes a year recap, why would anyone read mine? I didn’t want to be basic, and I didn’t want to get lost in the see of recaps that would be published. The more I thought about it; I realized I needed to do it for myself, rather than my followers. Whether anyone reads this or not, is not of my concern, but If you are reading this, I hope you take away valuable lessons from it.

I rang in 2017 physically in the same location I’m sitting right now in: Kashmir, India, at my dad’s showroom looking after family business matters. The only thing I cared about was a man, who I frankly thought I was going to end up with for the rest of my life and my small group of friends.

I was a fresh graduate with no direction and no job. I had the continued responsibility of taking over a family business in a continent I still feel like I’m unfamiliar with, and other family problems, I can’t seem to crawl myself out of. I was unhappy, and I let the responsibilities take weight on my emotional and physical health. The following months, I searched for jobs, and things started to look up. I landed an internship at a news organization, which I worked for during the election season and shortly after. I couldn’t land a full-time job because I had the responsibility of coming back to India. I decided I needed to go back to school, and that was the best decision of my life, thus far.

I applied to several schools and got into an incredible M.A. program, which would start the Fall of 2017.

However, until then, I hated being home. Something was agitating about it. I was living alone but still felt like something was missing, and I needed perspective. I had a loving boyfriend and great friends, but why was I so unhappy?

I decided to travel to Montreal by myself. I stayed in a fun hostel and for the week that I was there met incredible people from all over the world, that made my problems seem so small. They opened me up to a world of excitement and adventure. Five days is all it took for me to reboot. Five days of immersing myself in different monuments, cultures, and meeting people from different backgrounds. I know that every person I met on that trip, I met for a reason.

I came home, and I was still restless. I was putting my problems overseas front-and-center of everything, regardless of how great other things were going in my life. It took a toll on every relationship in my life. I found myself breaking up with my boyfriend because I just couldn’t see him fitting into the problems and life I had overseas–a life I believe is going to be a part of me forever. He deserved and needed better. Did I regret it? At first, yes. I was miserable wondering if I made the right decision. I worked on myself to become independent and slowly realized everything happens for a reason. Do I regret it now, with all due respect– no.

Why?

I owe my mental health to education. Once my M.A. program started, everything seemed to fall into place. I started molding into the person I want and was meant to be–a completely different person from the girl I was when I was in a relationship. I began to feel limitless.

Someone above kept blessing with me great opportunities and placing people into my life that I don’t think I can live without. I began to put my problems in India behind me and learned to live in the moment. If people were investing in me, I needed to be equally invested in them, and I began to be happy again.

I surrounded myself with things that I didn’t find stressful and didn’t carry a burden. By some miracle, everything started to fall into place in 2017. I traveled some more. I went back to Rome and Germany, after ten years and fell in love with every person I met traveling there.

I began dating and having fun again. When something didn’t feel right, I let it go. I listened to my brain because I knew my heart is fragile, and my decisions taught me I made the right choices.

As of now, I can’t see myself settling, ever. The people I love and want to give my attention to the most are my friends, myself, and my career. In 2017 I started living my best life.

Lesson #1: If something doesn’t whole-heartedly feel right, without hesitation, let it go.

Lesson #2: Trust that if something or someone is meant for you, the universe will gravitate it towards you.

Lesson #3: Don’t take moments for granted. I’ve lived so many moments in 2017, that made me feel like the happiest girl in the world. The most depressing thing in the world in living in a moment that makes you so happy, and realizing it’s temporary. Cherish those moments.

The people that fell in my life made me feel loved and independent. To my two best friends back in NY–who won’t even move their arms if I fell asleep on them, just to make sure I stay at peace–thank you for being my soulmates.

To the heartbreaks and dating mishaps I experienced along the way, thank you for the good times, the love, and attention you gave me at the time.

To the lessons learned: you’re the reason I have no personal new year resolutions for 2018. I believe everything that’s meant for me will gravitate towards me. I don’t have any expectations, except to keep living in the moment and cherishing the little things.

And as for the problems in India, you’ve taught me to be patient, and for you too, I believe things will fall into place. I have to continue loving everything else that’s working in my life. I’m putting the negative shit on the back burner. Nothing is perfect in life. And for what I’m grateful for is even where there are problems, my love of friends, hobbies, school, and people are helping me get through it.

Here’s to continue living my best life in 2018.

With love,

Meral

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