2016 Was A Good Year?

For most, January is often a time of reflection and resolution and I am always happy to jump aboard the (inevitable) pain train. For the past couple of years, January started with statements like, “2014 2015 2016 is going to be MY year!” or “2014 2015 2016 is the year I REALLY figure my life out!” as well as hopes for the coming year that usually included a deep desire to feel more fulfilled, wishing I could accomplish more (even if I wasn’t quite sure what that was) and hoping this would be the year that it would all turn around for me.

In the week leading up to 2017, I listened to one of my favorite podcasts, The Joy Junkie with Amy E. Smith, and something clicked. Her How to Make Shit Happen in 2017 episode made me realize that it takes more than a good ‘ol wish and a prayer to achieve real change. I recognized that my previous ‘resolutions’ (as stated above) were blanket statements with no clear outline as to what they meant, no measurable ways of deciding whether or not I had achieved them and no clear timeline as to when I wanted to complete them by – all things that are necessary for success and lasting change. This year, my resolutions look similar (um, because who doesn’t want to have their best year EVER?) but I have clearly defined what that means to me and I have outlined specific things I can do to achieve them.

The biggest point I took away from the episode was that while most of us are all gung-ho about setting resolutions for the New Year, we hardly ever take a look back to congratulate ourselves on what we DID accomplish in the prior year. 2016 was a tough year for me – words like ‘challenging’ and ‘lonely’ come to mind. But after stopping and taking a minute to look back, I remembered I did a lot of cool shit and I did grow along the way. And that, my friends, shocked the hell out of me. What I thought had been ‘another year wasted’, truly wasn’t. Though it was tough and my life didn’t do a 180, I did make progress. I did move forward. But most importantly, I kept going.

For your viewing pleasure (in no particular order), here are some of my funn-est/proudest/happiest moments of 2016:

i took a couple of pretty cool vacations!
Miami for the SOBE Winefest!

Miami – SOBE Wine & Food Festival!

Nashville, TN

Nashville, TN – I’m always down to tag along on a friend’s work trip!

I chopped eight inches off my hair! #shorthairdontcare

Hair by Jessika at Salon Luis

I saw BeyoncÉ in concert…

…and cole swindell and florida georgia line and kenny chesney!

Chaperoned by some of the greatest people EVER.

I started going back to church.


For the first time in three years, I put up a Christmas tree…


…and sent a photo christmas card 🙂

So, yes. 2016 was good (even despite the bad). But 2017 and I are ready to show ’em who’s boss. And the best part is…it is all right on time.

I Agree With The Baby Boomers


I’ve always been one of those people who quickly becomes annoyed when I’m with a group of people, I look around and everyone is on their cell phone. I find myself slightly perturbed when I get together with a friend for brunch and they place their phone on the table to be sure they won’t miss a text or an alert. And there are people out there who still forget to turn off their cell phone ringers at performances, meetings and even church. Ok, we get it, you’re important.

These things bother me for several reasons. Most importantly, when I’m with my bestie, I want to socialize with them especially if it’s one that I don’t see often. I want to tell them things and have them answer me – I think it’s called conversation. And I know it’s a lot to ask, but I’d like to make eye contact too. I would like to know that our relationship and our interaction is just as important to them as it is to me. (Also, I don’t receive nearly as many text messages as the rest of the world.  So while my friends are aggressively answering their text messages over brunch, I usually find myself in the deep dark hole of the ‘Explore’ section of Instagram trying to look like I’m doing the same. Yes, I’m aware of how pathetic this sounds, so don’t put me in that position, m’kay?) Though I’ve never uttered the words, I sometimes want to channel my inner baby boomer and condescendingly ask, “What did we ever do without cell phones?”

With this being ranted said, I was quite surprised at how uneasy I felt when I recently found myself without my cell phone. Actually twice. In the matter of a week. As a person who is self-admittedly annoyed at others dependency on their phone, I realized just how dependent I was on mine, how lost I felt without it and how it’s become somewhat of a security blanket, particularly as a young, single gal in the city. Let me explain.

Back in December, I decided to take myself on a date to the Holiday POPS at Symphony Hall. I must’ve gone a little overboard with the texting as I grabbed dinner beforehand (hey, what else does one do when sitting alone at a bar?) because my phone died as I was waiting for a kind stranger to take my picture in front of the holiday display. Grrrr, annoying.

Without my phone, I was unable to have photographic proof that I actually attended the POPS – I mean, did I really see the performance if it wasn’t documented on Instagram? Also, I had gotten into the venue by scanning the electronic ticket on my phone, but now at 0% I had no idea where I was sitting. So there I was, waiting in line at the box office to get an actual <gasp> PRINTED ticket!

Without my phone, the walk home also had me uneasy. I needed to be sure I didn’t get A) abducted – because the authorities wouldn’t be able to track my whereabouts from my phone with it being off, B) robbed – because I wouldn’t be able to immediately dial 911 to give the full description of the thief. In addition, I deferred going for a nightcap because I was unable to summon an Uber in the sub-zero temperature. And finally, I had no idea what I would’ve done at the bar by myself without my phone. Actually converse with someone? Ya right.

Later that week, I found myself without my phone again. I got all the way to work and realized I had left my it at home charging in a spot in my apartment that I don’t normally charge it (thank you, Christmas light extension cords). I felt super uneasy without it. How was I going to call for help if I got stuck in one of the notoriously unreliable elevators at the hospital? What was I going to miss in the world of Facebook? How was I going to pass the time at 3am if I couldn’t swipe right or left? I was in a full blown panic the more I thought about it. That morning was supposed to be the coldest of the season. What if my car didn’t start? What if I got into an accident on the 1.5-mile drive home and couldn’t document the damage with photographs? I’m embarrassed to say that once my patients were settled, I immediately drove home to get it.

None of these scenarios in which I was without my phone were serious or life threatening. Nothing bad happened to me because I didn’t document my POPS experience in perfectly filtered photographs. I could’ve jumped in a cab if I really wanted to grab a night cap. And I certainly could’ve survived a 12-hour shift without it – surely that’s why they have those ’emergency’ buttons in the elevators, right? What was I so worried about? I was starting to feel like a complete hypocrite. What had happened to me, my morals, my beliefs in social interaction?!

What had happened was I unknowingly became accustomed to the convenience/awesomeness of today’s technology and trusted some of the most important things in my life to a device. My photos, phone numbers (that I surely don’t know by heart), appointments, banking, apps that I use for transportation, exercise and socialization were all on that little iPhone 6. In addition, I constantly use my phone to check the weather…how else am I supposed to plan my outfits? And yes of course, there are times I utilize my phone to avoid social awkwardness or sometimes, social interaction (i.e. being on my phone at the bar clearly screams “leave me alone” right?).

In order to avoid this situation again, I’ve taken to using my brother’s little mantra before I leave the house: ‘Keys. Phone. Wallet.’ And I don’t leave until I’m sure I definitely have the second one (as well as my charger). Do I find it ridiculous that I rely this heavily on a device that weights 4.5 ounces? Yes. Do I care that much? No. Because everyone else does, too. In the words of the baby boomers, “It’s just the world we live in today, kids”.

No, but seriously, if we are hanging out, put your damn phone down and give me your undivided attention.