Seeing as it's New Year's Eve-Eve (that should definitely be a thing, so we have an excuse to celebrate more) I thought I would do a quick round-up of my 2014.
This year there have been hospital admissions, my Nan passing away, relationship changes, and I once again started suffering badly from my depression. My family and I have been through some really rough times in 2014 - I even saw my dad cry a couple of times (a very rare occurrence).
But I refuse to call 2014 a 'bad year', as there have been some amazing aspects too. In one day I had over 7000 blog views and hundreds of likes and shares on Facebook, due to my post on changing the stigma around depression. I moved into a new house at uni with some incredible people, that I now would call 'home'. I went on holiday to beautiful Puglia in Italy with my family, a place that I have wanted to visit for years, and got to see some trulli. I got into my third year of medical school, despite being so low around exam time, and set up this blog that is (hopefully) helping people understand more about mental health, or helping those with mental health issues. I also started Project Smile, my small initiative to try and make somebody's day.
I feel like my life has changed dramatically in 2014. I have found ways to overcome my depression, and am beating it every single day, whilst learning important life lessons from it along the way. In the wider world, 2014 may have been the year that the stigma around mental health started to change, and I'm proud to be a part of that. I have made new friends and relationships with people that I didn't have last year. I've grown in confidence with what I can achieve and how I can help people, as well as trying out new things that I wouldn't have done before, such as practising mindfulness and decorating our summer house. I have explored more of what Liverpool has to offer in the last few months, including eating my body weight in food at the food festival and gazing in wonder at the lantern parade. I've also learnt lots of new things - I have recently switched my DSLR camera from 'automatic' to 'manual', and have learnt technical jargon for my blog. I have been lucky enough to be able to learn lots of knowledge whilst studying medicine, as well as meeting lots of inspiring patients along the way. And you know what one of the best parts of this year has been? Having all of the support from everyone about my blog, and seeing how much of a difference I can make to peoples' lives. I never thought I would be interesting or knowledgeable enough to write to but you have all proven me wrong. I love hearing from you all, so thank you so much for writing to me!
It really is such a cliche, but I feel like my family is stronger and closer than ever after all we've been through this year - there really is a silver lining to every cloud. At the end of the day, all of the bad things are now in the past, and let's hope 2015 brings even more happiness and joy to our lives than this year has.
For last year's words belong to last year's language and next year's words await another voice.
- T.S. Eliot