Tuesday, January 1, 2013

What I Learned in 2012...

Reflecting back on 2012, I would be lying if I said that it was a great year. This past year was hard and ended even harder but I have learned A LOT. Here are many things I learned in 2012 as I try to remember the past 12 months of crazy life.

1. I need to continue working on patience. If I want something, I tend to go after it because I'm impatient. Usually going after something you want is not a bad thing but there are many times that waiting to see what happens and trusting in God's plan is the much better way to go....but I get tired of waiting and just try to make things happen myself. When I try to make things happen my way, the opposite usually happens of things not going the way I want. Being okay with waiting on God's timing is definitely something that I am learning.

2. Junior high students are some of the funniest people to hang out with. Here are some of my favorite quotes from this past year:
 -Dance team member #1: "Did you know if you eat bacon everyday you'll get cancer?" Dance team member #2's response: "No, you'll just get fat!"

-Student in one of my 7th grade classes during student teaching: "So, what about the brown eggs at the grocery store? Are those whole grain??"

-Dance team member #3 in the middle of doing kicks at practice: "IS YOUR BUTT SUPPOSED TO SWEAT!?"

-Dance team member #4: "Rated PG like there's no hugging in it, right?"
-Dance team member #4 again. After drinking water out of a hotel cup that is still wrapped in the sanitary plastic: "No Cara, you only take this plastic off if you are going to drink coffee."

-Student of mine during student teaching: "George Washington could write?? But he had wooden teeth!"

3. I have opened a banana the wrong way every year before this past one. Apparently you are supposed to open it from the bottom like monkeys do.

4. As much as I thrive off being around people, I am slowly becoming a little more introverted and needing personal quiet time.

5. I have huge fear of the future now that I actually have to sit down and think about what I'm doing after college.

6. Traveling and new adventures has become one of my favorite things to do. Put me in a car and take me anywhere!

7. I am really good at convincing myself to be busy and run from some problems and struggles than actually working through them.

8. My personal testimony of how God has pulled me out of darkness into light and where He continually takes me has really put me in awe this past year. If you want to read my story, you can on my very first post in this blog. When so many odds were and are continually against me finding and walking with the Lord, He covers me with His grace endlessly.

9. The best experiences from this past year were ones that were completely unexpected and unplanned. Thank you Jesus for blessing me far more than I deserve and allowing me to see blessing in things that I did not expect to be a blessing.

10. My heart is a lot more fragile than I ever thought previously. I need God's strength way more than I ever think I do.

11. Life seems to be becoming shorter and shorter with the more death I hear about and funerals I experience. You truly never know when you will lose what you love.

12. Everything that needs change and healing needs time most of all. Again, patience is not my strength but I am learning that giving things time is beneficial.

13. Making a meal for 70 people is not as bad as one may think!

14. Life is truly all about perspective. If you think positively and make the most of any situation, you will have more joy. Don't forget to allow yourself to grieve the pain of life but try to see the good in what God's doing.

15. I still have the best high school friends I could have ever asked for. Even after many years and life changes, they still bring out my best (and weirdest) traits and moments in life!

16. It is never too late to start over and make changes for what you want.

Most of what I learned may seem kind of broad but they are all lessons that have come up again and again this past year through many struggles and trials of many kind. I am happy to see 2012 go and have the pain and hardships washed away and as I prepare for a brand new year here are some of my goals for 2013 and the events that I am already super excited for!

-Resolution #1: Read through the New Testament and learn more about who Jesus truly is and how I can treat others more like Christ.

-Resolution #2: Just like many, many other people, take control of my health and fitness. Becoming more active and having a healthy body a priority.

-Resolution #3: Learning how to love others fearlessly and becoming more patient in circumstances.

I will stick to three for now but 2013 to me will be a year to focus on my life and where I can better strive after God above all. After finishing student teaching and my coaching season while still working the first couple months of 2013, I will then be off on adventures to California and Guatemala to travel. Once I get a little bit of traveling out of my system, I will finally dive into the new exciting adventure of moving to MN like I have been dying to do the past year! I am currently looking at moving to the Hopkins/Minnetonka area and having the chance to start fresh and build new community and new adventures without being surrounded by the past. 2013 already looks like a great start and I am excited to change for the better, grow, and simply live life.

Happy New Year!

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