When I usually look back on the year, I typically see the bad things, the regrets, the sadness and wondering how in the hell I had spent my time. 2013 proved to be quite different.

I did have the bad things and sadness; my uncle committing suicide, my grandmother’s cancer returning, packing up the house in Georgia, my aunt dying. All bad and sad things. But it was finally the year that I decided to live my life for me and work out some of my issues.

Looking back, change was my theme. I attempted to change my outlook on quite a few things, including marriage. Most people who know me know that I have issues with the “m” word. Big issues. So much so that I said I’d never do it. But I love B and this is the easiest way to be together, at least in the US. So I’m working through my issues and he’s being very patient with me. It’s a bit funny though. There was no actual proposal. It was more of a “hey I love you and want to actually live together in the foreseeable future so lets get married and you can move here”. I did get a ring though. Just saying. And true to me, it’s not a diamond (or cubic zarconia).

The immigration process has definitely tested my patience and my faith in the US government. The hoops! Oh my god the hoops we have to jump through. Nerve wrecking to say the least. But we made it through! B had the interview November 25th and received the K-1 visa. I spent one more Christmas with him in Victoria. He’s planning on crossing the border sometime on the 2nd or 3rd of January.

My baby girl graduated high school, my niece. I never understood the importance of a graduation ceremony until I attended hers. It meant the world to me to see her walk across that stage. I know James would be so very proud of her. And speaking of which, I postponed starting a new job so that I could be there.

The job is a huge pay cut, but it does have it’s perks. I now have health and dental insurance for the first time since I was dropped from my parents plan when I was in college. Also, a life insurance policy (though I’ve had one of those since I turned 18) and a 401K. That’s right, I finally have a retirement plan! Benefits, I has them. I also have a lot less job related stress in my life. Being a Claims Unit Assistant may have a bit of a crappy pay, but I don’t bring my work home with me anymore. When I shut down my computer at 5pm, I’m done. No more thinking about it until the next morning at 8am. Plus, paid vacation. I get paid for not going to work. Awesome!

I also got my own apartment – well, it will be ours, but for the time being it’s mine. While it was very depressing packing up the house in Georgia, some good did come from it, and that would be in the form of furniture. The more I took from there, the less I had to buy for the place. It’s a bit on the small side, but it’ll work for now.

All in all, I did a lot of growing up this past year. And for the most part, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The stress, the pain, the tears, the laughter, the friendships, the love. It all came bundled together this year and gave me a different perspective on life.

With that said, I can only hope that 2014 will have something great in store for me.

But for now, goodbye 2013, over all it was a great year and it will be missed.