I don’t want to be one of those “look how quickly the year has gone, Barbara” kind of people, but how quickly has this year gone!? Maybe I’m just getting older. It seems like just yesterday we were ringing in 2017, still wounded from all the people we lost in 2016 and full of hope that 2017 would be better. This recap is going to be a difficult one for me to fathom and put into words, because 2017 was simultaneously the best and worst year of my life. I know that when I look back on 2017 in a few years time I will look back fondly, and it’s actually been over this past year that I’ve realised that everything that happens, good and bad, happens for a reason. So while I will touch on it in this post, I’m not going to let the negative have as much of an effect on me as it normally would, because I’ve learnt from everything 2017 threw at me. So, I’ve just done my meditation for the day, poured myself a cup of pomegranate green tea, and I’m going to look back at 2017 and document what I hope 2018 will have in store for me.
I got married.
I know. I didn’t think I’d see the day either. When I was younger I can hold my hand on my heart and tell you that I honestly could never see myself getting married. You know how everyone tells you they’d been planning their wedding day since they were little? Not me. I literally just couldn’t picture it. But as it turns out, 2017 was my turn. I got engaged on Valentines Day of 2016 and the big day was Tuesday 30th May 2017, followed by an amazing honeymoon in St Lucia. That’s a whole 471 days of stress, planning, disagreements, more stress, and cake tasting. I wish I’d known then what I know now, because there are certain things I would have done differently, but the only thing that matters is that I married the only person who I can truly rely on. The only person who supports me 100% in everything I do, doesn’t question me, respects me, and loves me unconditionally. This is completely the event that saved 2017. I also can’t write about my wedding without mentioning my gorgeous best friend and bridesmaid Hannah. She put so much hard work into organising my hen do and keeping me sane the night before my wedding, and she did squats with me and held my hair up while I did my eyebrows on the morning of my wedding. I couldn’t have imagined the day without her and she is absolutely one in a million.
I became a blogger.
Even though I started my blog in 2016, I don’t feel like I could really call myself a blogger until I really put my all into it in 2017. That was the year I bought a domain name, I met some amazing people in the blogging community, I landed my first paid blog post, and I built relationships with brands and PRs which will hopefully see me well into the future. I started focusing more on my photography and writing honest posts which would make people think, as well as blogging about my favourite lipsticks. I put more effort into promoting my posts and engaging with others and supporting everyone I possibly could. Towards the end of the year my mental health was at an all-time low, and I felt as though I couldn’t put my brain in gear to produce any decent posts without letting the quality suffer, so I took a small break from producing anything new while I took time out to help recovery. I’m still not there, but every day I’m one step closer. I know for a fact I couldn’t have gotten through 2017 without the help from my newest pal Katie. We met through instagram and I genuinely think we were sisters in a previous life because we have so much in common it borders on spooky. She shares the exact same outlook on life as me and she has the exact same sense of humour, which I think makes for a beautiful friendship! Hopefully 2018 will be the year we finally get to meet in person!
I became vegetarian & cruelty free.
Early last year I documented my decision to switch to cruelty free cosmetics, and it’s really opened my eyes and my mind to how our actions can affect others, animals, and our beautiful planet which we call home. I’ve learned so much by making this transition and I’m so happy I did so, it’s really changed my outlook on life and, without wanting to be preachy, I urge everyone else to consider doing the same. Shortly afterwards, I also decided to become a vegetarian. I’d been a vegetarian in my teen years, which was cut short by a very persistent (now ex)-boyfriend. I’d watched a few documentaries on Netflix (Cowspiracy and What The Health), and it absolutely blew my mind when I heard about the negative effects the meat industry were having on not only the animals involved, but to our health, and the environment. It was then that I’d decided to make the switch and I haven’t looked back since. I feel so much better in myself already and I feel as though I have a much clearer head than before, I’m less lethargic, and my skin is a lot better than it has been in recent years.
I met a childhood hero.
2017 will forever be the year that I met Chris Jericho. It was such a bizarre turn of events, and it really taught me to have faith in people and that sometimes, trusting people and taking risks does pay off. Without wanting to sound like I’m bragging, I’ll tell you the story of how I ended up meeting him. In 2017 he left wrestling with the WWE to focus on his band; Fozzy. Their new album came out in October, and I tweeted about it, saying how much I was enjoying the album. I then received a DM from CJ himself asking if I was going to any of their UK shows, and I said that unfortunately I wasn’t because there weren’t any gigs near me and that I couldn’t really afford it at such short notice. After going back and forth a little bit, he offered to put us on the guest list for one of their shows! I was SO skeptical, because things like that never happen to someone like me. I was completely convinced that it was just an assistant who runs their twitter page just having a laugh, and I just thought “YEAH OK BABE JOG ON”. Even though I thought it was too good to be true, we went anyway, and as it turned out, it was completely legit, and actual Chris Jericho had put me and my husband on the guest list. MENTAL! After that we hung around afterwards to meet him and say thank you, and he even recognised me from Twitter. I still haven’t had my marriage proposal though.
So that was 2017. Having written it all down, I think I achieved more than I realised. Though 2017 for me was covered by a huge dark cloud called mental health. Anyone who regularly reads my blogs will know I’ve suffered with anxiety and depression for a while now, and 2017 did include some of my lowest points and some very dark times. At the time I felt like there was nothing good in my life to be appreciative of, but having written this post I can see that the dark cloud was just blocking my view of the sun.
Having experienced what I have, I feel that I have a much better outlook for 2018. I’ve removed toxic people and situations from my life, I’ve learned to stand up for myself and for what is right without feeling guilty, and I’ve learned to question things more and not take anything at face value. I’m more motivated than ever to get back the year 2017 took from me. I’m going to make my house and my everyday more hygge, I’m going to spend time with the people I love, making memories I can cherish forever. I’m going to practice meditation more, do regular exercise, improve my diet, drink more water, and I’m going to focus hard on self-care and self-improvement. I’m going to put my heart and soul into this blog and work hard to become a better person and a better blogger. I’m going to become healthy inside and out. Healthy body and healthy mind. I posted a couple of weeks ago about the importance of taking care of myself and putting myself first at times, so I’m going to make 2018 the year of Kimberley. This will be my comeback year.