Happy Holidays, friends!!! You know how I’m always saying “that was a time“?? Yes, sometimes I say it just to be overly dramatic because, let’s face it, I’ve been known to be a bit extra about things — can you blame me? But when I say (errr, write!), that phrase in the context of my ever-so-official and exciting 2019 Year-In-Review???
Well, that’s the absolute truth with a capital T — no filter, no pretense, no hyperbole. Just honest truth about a year that was certainly one for the record books. Was your year like that too? I sometimes dread looking back at the year every December and sometimes, the whole ordeal can start to feel a bit cringe-worthy with cliche phrases and all that looking-back banter. I still like to do it, though, because just going through the motion of reminiscing about one year is a great way to prepare for the upcoming year; it helps to put things in perspective and you all know how much I love putting things in perspective and analyzing until my heart’s content.
And like I said, 2019 was quite the year to remember, so I’m pretty sure that this 2019 Year-In-Review is going to be quite something as well.
In fact, there’s SO MUCH to remember that I’ve been worried that I’ll forget to include important and memorable moments — my apologies if I do, so feel free to remind me in the comments!! Like I said last year, BUCKLE UP, friends, because this is going to be epic, if you ask me! So without further ado, here are the highlights of my life online and offline for the last 12 months. Let’s get to this 2019 Year-In-Review…
I blogged about all things love and relationships, like Ms. Bear and the Fake Plant, surviving the Polar Vortex, an ode to Conversation Hearts, entitled Dude Bros on The Bachelorette and more thoughts on my father’s suicide.
Disability posts, such as ways to support disabled people, why I love talking about my disability, Mr. Rogers, the importance of disability representation and my date with the DMV.
Fantastic fashion moments, like Harry Styles at the Met Gala, this pink opal ring, unicorn love and more Etsy finds!
Fun Family Photos, including our big trip to the Big County Fair, our Christmas Trees, my 38th birthday, the Polar Vortex and our TRIP TO NYC.
(As a side note, I just have to say, again, HOW FUN our trip to the Big Apple was!! Central Park!! Broadway!! The View!! Meeting my amazing editors!! Tons of family time!! I still can’t believe we got to go and I’m so grateful to my mom and cousin for making it happen!! They’re aces, aren’t they??)
Pontificating on pop culture, like Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, the adorable Royal Baby, The Big Bang Theory finale (spoiler alert: I wasn’t a fan!), Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello, how I’m a huge Shawn Mendes fan girl, Sharpay Evans and High School Musical, Taylor Swift and how 1999 was really the best year in pop culture!
And, just like in 2018, I wrote lots of social and political commentary posts because now is not the time to be silent: The culture of women apologizing, challenging toxic masculinity, why I didn’t support the Women’s March, Nick Sandmann and dangerous teens, Joe Biden and consent, women sharing successes and the Alabama abortion ban and women’s body autonomy.
Plus, I also gave my VERY FIRST speech at a political event! Oh, wow, I was so nervous, but I think it went well. And it really pumped me up!
Aside from blogging, my freelance writing career continued to grow in 2019, as you can see from this cute photo spread I made!! I wrote about my favorite (and not-so-favorite) things in the areas of relationships, disabilities and pop culture for publications like Cosmo, Glamour, The Fix and The Week and The Washington Post. Plus, my op-ed game was strong — I wrote 10 pieces for CNN Opinion!
I also broke into new publications such as The Independent, Adweek, The Daily Dot, Family Minded, Rooted In Rights, Health, HuffPost Personal, Local Love and The Riveter!
Now, I saved the best for last!! The biggest, most surprising, most unexpected, most surreal, most exciting and most thrilling thing to happen…
Can you believe it?? I still can’t, honestly! I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately and it’s funny because that viral tweet is something I never worked for and something that I didn’t plan. I plan and plot every single aspect of my blog and freelance writing, but this viral tweet came out of nowhere! Needless to say, I’m still processing it all. But I’m so grateful that people responded to it! I just hope I didn’t sound too awkward in my interviews with USA Today, Good Morning America, The BBC, The Chicago Tribune and PEOPLE — not to mention the handful of live interviews I did. Oh, man, that was a time, indeed!
Whew! Whew! Whew!
Still with me, friends??
Good. Because seeing my entire year all written out like this is just a bit overwhelming!! I mean, when we’re living it and going through the year, we don’t really think about how massive it all will seem at the end, do we? We live each day and take it one step at a time. We focus on one thing at a time. The next item on our to-do list. And the next item after that. Until, well, it all adds up to 365 days of memories — good ones, bad ones, memorable ones and even ones we’d like to forget.
But then comes that moment in late December when you take everything as one big collective whole. You look at everything that happened throughout the past year and you realize, maybe for the very first time, “Wow! I did all that, didn’t I…?”
Whether it was good or bad, you survived the year! And that is something to be proud of! And, of course, something to celebrate!!
My idea of the perfect celebration? Taking some much-needed time off for the holidays!! I’m excited to kick back, relax and spend quality time with my mom and Janelle. The holidays can be hard and emotional for so many reasons. If you’re struggling this year, please know that you’re not alone. Be kind to yourself…you deserve it!
I hope you’re able to get in the festive spirit in whatever way brings you joy and peace!! I’ll be back to regular posting on Wednesday, January 8th!! Look for posts about our Christmas adventures, some new bylines and odes to one of my favorite shows of 2019 and…Peppermint Patty! Yes, the blog fun will continue in 2020. Also, feel free to send me your thoughts and ideas any time — just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!!! I always love hearing from you!! And I hope you enjoyed this 2019 year-in-review!
And as always, feel free to connect with me on Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Bloglovin! See you there!!
I love you, friends!! And I’m so glad I got to meet so many new friends this year who found my blog after my viral tweet. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you’ll continue on this journey with me in the new year!! I’d love to see your own 2019 Year-In-Review too! xoxo
Wow! You had a really great year! Enjoy your time off, and I look forward to reading your posts next year. 🙂
Linda Fitzgerald says
Melissa, you did have a busy and exciting 2019! I look forward to reading more! BTW: The family pics you used for this post are great! Thanks for always sharing with us! I hope you have a great holiday (and time off) and a Happy New Year!
that was definetly your year! I am so glad i got in touch with your tweet that went viral and from that moment on i follow you! You are really inspiring and funny, you give hope and laughs, you are a very talented writer. I love to read more and more.
Wishing you and your family a very happy christmas and enjoy your days off.
Sending lots of love from Germany 💛
That really was a year, Melissa! Thanks for taking us along on your adventures and sharing all your witty insight into life and humanity. I love your blog and look forward to seeing what the coming new year brings! Cheers!
I’m sooo proud of you and everything you accomplished this year, I’m also very glad I got to know about you
Naomi S. Reynolds says
I’m so proud of you!
A beautiful year for you! You are a beautiful person and I am so lucky I just recently was introduced to you. Blessings to you and your family! You are wonderfully inspiring!
Sounds like you had an amazing and exciting year! Cheers to 2020 and wishing you the best 🎉
Sarah Winton says
That certainly was a year! There are some wonderful accomplishments there. I also have to say kudos to you for not taking that horrible bullying lying down!