Starting Off The New Year In A New Place

Every year everyone has the mindset, ‘New year, New me’ and to be blunt, there’s usually no change whatsoever.

Now, before you get all flustered that I even made such a comment there can be something new to focus on and that’s the way you look at life. I do believe that people can change, but only if they want to. From what it seemed like on social media, 2018 kicked EVERYBODY’S ass—physically and mentally in one way or another, myself included. I left the year going in with a mindset of, ‘Wow this year sucked nothing good happened,’ which couldn’t be FARTHER from the truth. It wasn’t until my last day in California (also the last day of the year), when I forced myself to sit and write a list of everything positive that happened to me. I experienced a lot more than I thought and the majority of it was positive. I was already excited to start 2019 because that meant I had the opportunity to start a new job and was that much closer to graduating college. But, to top it all off I’m able to say that I started off the new year on the other side of the country in sunny California.  

My parents, my bestie, and I packed our bags and headed to the airport at 3 a.m the day after Christmas. We were EXHAUSTED by time we got there but let me tell you, getting off that plane and seeing bright blue skies and the sun is worth getting up that early any day of the week. Going from grey skies and cold Cleveland, Ohio to this felt like I was dreaming. I was excited to spend the last few days of the year in a different state, physically and mentally. A little confused? Let me explain. As I said before, a lot of us seemed to have gotten their asses kicked by 2018 and I was going into this vacation not feeling 100% present. I was eager to take this time completely removed from my life back in Ohio and to live in the moment. Going in with that helped me relax and allowed myself to enjoy myself for the first time in a long time.  

Spending two days going to Disneyland and California Adventure put all of us back in time to when we were all kids. The one thing that was different for all of us was that we got the joy of experiencing each park for the first time. All four of us have been to Disney World and the rest of the magical parks countless times. I’m not saying every time we went the magic was lost, but not knowing what to expect was exciting.  

Disneyland is its own type of magic. For starters, the characters walk around freely without anybody accompanying them. I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw Chip and Dale walking around and dancing with others. People didn’t bombard the characters either but instead waited their turn for a photo and were willing to step in and take other people’s photos for them.  

California Adventure is its own separate world, and if you ask me, it’s more exciting than Disneyland. There’s nothing eyegrabbing like the castle right when you walk in but, if you walk to the back Pixar Pier is a little land of its own. I LOVE anything Pixar and each area is as if you were placed in a movie.   

The last two days we were there were spent exploring Los Angeles and that means every touristy thing you could think of. We did the Walk of Fame and ventured out to Beverly Hills and even the famous In-N-Out. This is probably a very unpopular opinion but, In-N-Out is overrated and none of us could figure out why people obsess over it. I personally didn’t have a burger since I’m a vegetarian but I asked my family what they thought and they said they’ve had better. The fries were a whole different story; they were disgusting, but looked cute in photos at least.  

Basically, my take away from the last few days that we were in California was that by taking those few days and disconnecting myself as much as I could from everything except the people around me, it ended up being exactly what I needed. It gave me the opportunity to be in the moment, which only later allowed me to feel refreshed and at ease with my own mind.  I’m ready to take on the new year and my final semester of college head on. I realized that there was so much good in my life that I became so blind to by a few minor events that happened in 2018.

That being said, bring it on 2019— I’m ready for whatever you send my way.