22.

***Warning! This is not a review of the American classic song, “22” by T. Swift. It’s more of a sequel to my last post about a birthday, 21. Though it may seem glaringly obvious to write a sequel to 21, called 22. I think it is fair to report what has happened in this giant flaming poo bag of a year called, 2016. Since this year (2016) has brought a series of unfortunate events and a spattering of fortunate events in my life.

In honor of the recent Netflix release of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, which breaks up their year into the four seasons (Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall), I too have decided to take you on a journey through the seasons of my 21st year of life. And, an extra bonus feature: things I’m looking forward to on my 22nd anniversary of birth.***

P.S. If you’ve already watched the GG Revival, please read this NY Times piece about everything you just watched. It made me feel a lot better about everything. Just read it. It’s really good.

Photo courtesy of CarterMatt.com

Photo courtesy of CarterMatt.com

Winter (Jan to mid-March)

As a freshly-turned 21 year old, I felt on top of the world. No more sad nights of drinking alcohol bought by my older friends at a house party. I could finally use my then hourly wage of $12 entirely on a cocktail at a bar. Oh the liberation! Sayonara paycheck, overpriced cocktails are calling…

Photo courtesy of Giphy

Photo courtesy of Giphy

The wild 20-fun-year-old trope only lasted through a couple of crazy Fridays and Saturdays in Winter, because I had soon realized that my calling of being an early onset grandma was growing nearer and nearer. It only took a disaster of a New Year’s Eve and the series of aftermath events that followed to show me that I was indeed not a crazy partier, and that I actually preferred those nights in drinking a glass, instead of 20 glasses that led to vomiting #21 #neveragain #okwellmaybeonceortwice,tbh

Points to take away from Winter: I learned that NYE is the most overrated holiday ever. I realized that it’s ok to be a grandma at 21, because chances are, you can’t afford spending $12 per cocktail, $5 cover and $20 for an uber, every weekend. Also, most importantly, I started to see that 2016 was going to be a year of transition, anxiety and a whole lot harder than my 2014-2015 “study (abroad) break”.

Spring (end of March to mid June)

After my first and last Spring Break experience in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, which was everything that I could ever ask for out of Spring Break (Margaritas+Beach+Ceviche+Avocado for days+Pacifico en la Playa+Pan Dulce+Fun Gals to Spend it With=perfect spring break).

Immediately after that perfect week, I was faced with the harsh reality of the way things were, which was…really shitty. My housemate drama had built up past the point of just the classic annoyance over an untidy kitchen. It had become personal and was soon clear that the issues we all had ran deeper than some were willing to acknowledge. Tension was high, sides were chosen, and then eventually it all just erupted.

We weren’t the only ones, though. Pretty much everyone I knew at that time was ‘so over’ their living situation. Not to mention all the anxiety everyone was feeling about college ending, next steps and general fear of the unknown. I was also under a great deal of stress with trying to figure out how to get companies to not be such assholes and at least call or email me back after taking the time to apply. Like, I get it. I’m not the perfect fit for all the things I am applying to, but at least let me know you’re rejecting me and don’t just leave it there for me to wonder. I prefer being shut down, than left to wait.

While I was trying to figure out my next chapter, I still had some unfinished in my current one — graduation. I tried to be sentimental and shit, so I went to my all campus commencement, but I realized that I just wasn’t into it, like at all…and promptly Irish Exited my own graduation. But, before you all go thinking that I’m some sort of badass or ingrate (I could see both sides), just know, I actually did go to my real graduation for Muir. And, it was special.

Points to take away from Spring: A Mexico Spring Break is #WORTHIT. Transitions are hard. People will come in and out of your life. Living with people is tough. Grad pics are dumb.

Summer (Mid June – August):

Literally the day after I walked across the stage at commencement, my friend Rebs and I went on two-week long tour of Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. It was an insane 18 hours of travel that was exhausting but so worth it. Our trip wasn’t really a vacation. It was more of an experience, because we never stopped learning, moving or SWEATING…IT WAS SO EFFIN HOT. I left my first SE Asian experience confused on how I was supposed to process everything I had just experienced: the unimaginably beautiful temples and culture, feeling so physically different and isolated, and also so grateful to get to experience such a different way of life. I look forward to SE Asia Part 2. Here are some pics from my trip:

Ok, I know that in the beginning of this post I said that 2016 was a flaming poo bag of a year, yet I just shared with you the two amazing trips I took to fun and exciting places. Just remember that I said that 2016 had a spattering of fortunate events and well, traveling was definitely what I was referring to.  So rest assured that the rest of my summer was filled with more frustration in the job hunt. I was looking into so many different options and applying left and right to maybe get one or two interviews. It was exhausting. I was either “too young” or short “full-time” work experience — which always mind boggled me — how I was supposed to get full-time work experience as a full-time student? Like, sorry I only worked part-time and you don’t count that. SO DUMB! i’m ranting…ok…deep breath. Eventually, at the very end of August, I was informed about a T.A. job at an Elementary School. So, I decided to stray from the job hunt for a cool minute and try something unexpected, yet familiar.

Points to take away from Summer: Traveling some place where you feel different is an interesting and formative experience. Looking for a job right after college is both humbling and infuriating. Sometimes the unexpected opportunities make you the most happy.

Fall (September to December):

Fall marked the start of me officially joining the “full-time work adult club”. It’s not very exclusive, but boy was I glad to be a part of it. I started working around mid-September at a local elementary school, working in the Literacy Intervention room with the most adorable 2nd and 3rd graders. It only took a few hours of hanging out with 7, 8, and 9 year olds all day for me to really appreciate my new job. While, I could understand how it’d drive some crazy, I find the fact that they have literally no filter absolutely entertaining.

Kids are seriously the best.

Kids are seriously the best.

Other than my job, Fall has been kind of hard and very busy. I also went back to school, because like Depeche Mode so accurately noted, I just can’t get enough. I started taking Spanish, which has been actually muy divertido, because I’ve always wanted to learn and is very useful. But, yeah, being a student again and working full-time kind of sucks.

Other things to add to the list of reasons of why 2016 sucks: my parked car got ran into (she had insurance and is ok…silver lining), my allergies have been awful, we lost so many great celebrities (Prince, Bowie, Alan Rickman, and way too many more), oh yeah and FUCKING TRUMP getting elected. Like come on, really? If you’re so ready to say bye felicia to 2016, watch this little excerpt of a bunch of people saying why 2016 sucks on John Oliver. Or watch the full clip (highly recommended) below:

So, yeah that pretty much brings us up to the present. Now, it’s my anniversary of birth and I am officially so done with 21, and movin on up to 22. I’m hoping for bluer skies, but I am headed to Seattle this weekend, so I know blue skies won’t be in my forecast just yet.

Points to take away from Fall: I love working with kids. I’ll only ever be happy in a job where I am helping people. America is in the shitter…we should work on that. Oh and Fuck 2016 and Rory Gilmore…honey, 2016 don’t look good on you. byeeeeeeeeee

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