Getting close to closing out 2013, the holiday season is in full swing. With the busyness and hustle of over-thinking gift ideas, pushing your way through the store lines to get the best deals, and dirtying up the kitchen preparing holiday goodies, I am here to remind you to remember to take a moment to think about yourself this New Year as well. 12 months have passed since last December, it is time to do an overview of your 2013. What major events happened? What did you change within you? How did you help other people? What risks did you finally take steps towards doing? I know these are questions many of us never think to ponder over, but the holiday season is truly about giving extra time to devout to the love you have for those close to you. And with each year there should be some progress within ourselves, at least that is my opinion. But who are we as human beings if we don't continue to improve as people? I feel that if we don't take certain risks, including giving pieces of ourselves that we have built walls around, we are allowing ourselves to be somewhat dead to the world we walk upon. I challenge myself during this time of year to go back through my blog posts, journal pages, Facebook posts, Twitter feed and whatever else I have posted on throughout the year, to see where I started and what I did throughout the year. Doing this, one would be surprised all the things they had forgotten. There are certain feelings that we felt strongly, and in a week's time those deep human emotions can be blurred. And I believe it is in those emotional times that we find out what are souls, minds and hearts are really made of. A recap of my year..got on at a steady, great paying job in a field I never thought I would be a part in, law enforcement. Experienced two close deaths of both my grandfathers in the same year. I learned more about what to look for and what is important when it comes to apartment shopping, so you don't have to live 6 months in a ghetto (LOL). I experienced heartbreak, yet again. I removed quite a few negative people from my life, and it is brighter everyday not having the extra baggage. I continue to teach myself the importance of putting myself first, as well as the opposite of giving yourself to others and starting ever so famous chain reactions. I also developed some doubt about what I want to do and where I want to go with my future. Being 21 I know that it's a young age to stress, but being the overthinker I am it is a continuous bad habit, lol. Trying to live in the moment is essentially easier said than done, for 24 hours in a day and 365 days in a year is honestly not a lot. The future will be here before I know it. But we also have to realize when the future is here, the past is exactly that, the past, and we can't go back if regret all those times that we took for granted and didn't cherish. Back to the plus side, I have oddly grown closer to my family, even though I am not able to go home as often as I like. I think after 18 years of nothing but stick living, being able to spread my wings and live a little has helped me immensely in many aspects of my life. But I have to say, the big thing of my 2013 that sticks out is I believe to have found the person I have been looking for for ages. It goes much deeper than my life alone. I think my soul has been searching for the southeast Kansas soul that I found through the ridiculous source of the interwebs. What I thought to be another lost cause turned out to be something so unrealistically realistic that it is hard to wrap my mind around it some days. I know it is crazy, but in a short six months this woman has changed me in ways that I don't think anyone else in the world could. And the incredible thing is, I have changed her too. She is actually what inspired me to write this post (along with many more obviously lol.). Being new to the whole gay lifestyle, anyone familiar with it also knows that the hardest people it is to come out to is our family, those that have known us literally forever. And today she finally came out to her uncle, the parent figure that stepped into the shoes as the role of her mother and father. She has changed into a more than already incredible human being, and the way I feel about her and the way she makes me feel daily is very indescribable. Honestly, I really hope to one day be able to find the words for these feelings, these butterflies. But for now I will live in the moment :) That is my year wrapped in a nutshell, what is yours? Honestly, take that extra moment for yourself. Give yourself a pat on the back for surviving another year. And make a mental list of things that you would like to improve on. I know it is difficult to be honest with oneself in a world of greedy, selfish individuals. But you just gotta remember you aren't them, and you can't control the minds of those people. You got to do YOU. And during the holiday season we, especially as Americans, get lost in all the hustle and bustle of gift giving and receiving that we forget what is truly important, the simply four letter word of L-O-V-E. Even if it's just a moment, a moment is way more than no time at all. Trust me, it will be beneficial, and will be the stepping stones of changing your life!