As the clock ticks down the waning hours of new year’s eves, we can’t help but reflect on the year that is about to be put to bed. A few days ago a friend asked me what my favorite adventure of the year was, and I had to think hard about it. Then I got nostalgic. It’s hard to choose just one; I have to assume it’s similar to choosing your favorite child.
2013 was a really busy year here at The Great Wide Open. And while I had a few lows, it was a year filled with highs…and high notes. Here is a rundown of my favorite adventures of the past year:
You all got the play-by-play of my stressful move (which maybe I was being a little dramatic about) and the real-life adventure of living alone for the first time. While I may have seemed like a crazy person last spring, the experience taught me a lot about my strengths, my limitations and how amazing my friends are. Who needs movers when you have BFFs with SUVs? The experience also made me very comfortable asking for help (which I used to be very bad about) from friends, family and “strangers on the internet,” as my father pointed out.
I embraced my long-dormant outdoorsy side by learning to rock climb in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with the fine folks at Northeast Mountaineering. What was so interesting about this was the fact that after trying so many things and being bad, I mean really bad, at many of them I assumed that I would fail at scaling a rock fifty feet in the air. But you know what? I was really good at it. Being lowered back down was another matter altogether, but we’ll focus on the positive!
I got to meet and eat Chinese take-out with the amazing jewelry designer Kenneth Jay Lane in his Manhattan studio. This was one of those moments when I literally had to pinch myself it was so surreal. I was sitting across the table from a person I admire a great deal, interviewing him and chatting about his old pal Jackie Kennedy. Who am I, and how did I get here? When I started this blog I never imagined that an opportunity like this would be available to me. It truly was a dream come true.
From dreams to nightmares…Probably my most terrifying adventure of the year demonstrated how comfortable I have become with mass-scale public humiliation. I sang a duet, in public…in front of an audience years after being told that I was a bad singer. While I may not have sounded all that great, I did face a long-held fear and felt so much support during the rehearsal process, at the performance and afterwards in the comment section of this blog that it really did feel like a triumph and not a total humiliation (but judge for yourself below).
Yes, 2013 was a great year for me and this blog. Over the past two years I have slowly let go of my Type A ways, and have become well acquainted with that feeling we all get deep in the pit of our stomachs when we’re about to try something totally out of our comfort zones. I didn’t realize how much my fear of failure had been holding me back until I changed my reaction to that feeling. Instead of leaning back or walking away, I now jump in, head first, secure in the feeling that I may just surprise myself. And if I don’t, and I fail, big deal…at least I gave it a try. While I started this blog to try to find my next passion in life, it seems that maybe my passion is trying new things, unafraid of the outcome…and writing of course.
I have lots planned for the coming year and a lot not planned. Some of it I will make up as I go along, and how great is that? I will be trying tons of new things and experience. I have no idea where this whole adventure will take me, and that’s ok. It’s actually better than ok…it’s pretty exciting.