A Reflection on 2019

2019 was a year that went by too fast and also too slow. Nothing too monumental happened, yet I feel it was a year of growth for myself. I learned a lot about myself and I got pushed to certain limits that helped me to look at myself and what I want out of life and out of people in my life.

My Friends

2019 was a year where I lost some friends and gained some new ones. Some old friends disappeared from my life, partly because I stopped reaching out, and rather than mourn that loss, I’ve accepted that they don’t want to be in my life anymore and that’s ok. It’s important to learn that you can’t constantly reach out to people to nurture a friendship. There has to be some effort back from that other person, and if there’s not, it may be best to just let it go.

I also was able to reconnect with some friends who moved back to Florida, as well as make new ones by going outside of my comfort zone and trying new things. Trust me when I say making the time to meet new people is worth it, and that even if you and someone have grown apart, that doesn’t mean you won’t grow back together in the future.

Health and Wellness

This year saw improvements in health and wellness for myself and for others I care about. It didn’t come without work, but I’m extremely proud of the work put in by myself and by others, and I look forward to continuing to see improvements in 2020. I’ve got my health goals laid out, and have several others who have their own health goals they are working towards. Having this group makes it much easier to accomplish said goals rather than trying to go in alone. Find your group, and join a fitness class, gym, or social group that will get you up and active. Take care of your body and mind, nourishing both, and know when to sit back and get some rest.


I can’t say that I fell in love in 2019, but maybe that’s something that will happen in 2020. I learned a bit more what I want from a relationship, while also getting ghosted, and while that may not have been fun, it was a good learning experience. It showed me who that person really was and helped remove someone who wouldn’t have been good for me out of my life.

Personal Goals

I continued working on a novel I’m writing and took the next step towards getting it published by sending it to some beta readers. My editing is by no means completed, but I look forward to continuing work on it and hopefully sending it out for querying in the near future. I also look forward to growing this blog. I love writing these posts and interacting with some of my readers, and I hope you enjoy the content as much as I enjoy writing it.

I always look forward to a new year as a fresh start, and this year is no different. I am so excited to see what 2020 has in store for me, and to thank 2019 for the lessons I was given. Happy New Year everyone!


Can You Fall In Love Without Ever Touching?

So for those of you who haven’t had your hearts ripped out by the movie Five Feet Apart, first off, how the heck have you not? And second, go see it right now! Right now!

Ok, glad we got through that. Now, without giving up any spoilers, this book raises an interesting question and viewpoint, one that I’ve actually had people ask me, and one that I’ve wondered myself. Is it possible to fall in love without ever touching? Without ever kissing or being able to hold hands or do anything other than just talk? So for me, I think yes, but this is a view that I’ve had people challenge me on. So what do you think?

To me, it seems like a no-brainer. Some people think of love as this thing that needs intimacy, that needs hand holding and kissing, and being near one another, but I’ve never thought that was necessary to love. Now, in this case, we are strictly speaking romantic love, and not platonic love. I mean, think about it, you tell your friends you love them, and you haven’t needed to hold their hands or spend the night with them (at least, I hope not, because if so, buddy, you’re not really in what I’d call a friend area). The same can be said for romantic love. The love that we all hope to find one day, it’s a soul to soul connection. It’s not something that happens because you two held hands and made out at a bar. It’s something that happens because you bonded over reading a certain novel that made both of you think. It happens because of a chance encounter that allowed you to show a stranger your true colors, and they accepted you for what you were. Sure, touch and that intimacy is necessary to build upon a relationship, and as a great way to share how you feel with that special someone. But it’s not necessary for love, and it’s certainly not necessary to fall in love.

While love at first sight may be a bit far fetched, I mean, I’m romantic, but I’m practical too, I do think that there are certain souls that are meant to be. Maybe not forever, or maybe not in that timing, but that doesn’t mean that connection isn’t there. In some cases, it may take a few conversations to uncover it, and while I know so many people think there needs to be that physical connection to help, I disagree. That physical connection should only strengthen what’s already there. To me, there are several forms of intimacy, aside from the physical. There’s the intimacy of speaking to someone at 2 in the morning, when you both are getting groggy after a long day, and you’ve been talking for hours, and sleep isn’t even important anymore, and you are being completely honest with that person and yourself, because you are just too tired to not. Intimacy is long looks across the room, reading that connection into every look. It’s those conversations you have with just your eyes, the ones that no words are needed. It’s those little moments, where you just look over at that special someone, and you just have that wonderful feeling that they’re absolutely perfect. That’s intimacy. And in my opinion, you can have that, without ever touching. You can have that being in different cities, and you can definitely fall in love without even meeting in person.

When you think of falling in love, you might think of some gorgeous guy, or girl, sweeping you off your feet, and you two live happily ever after. And that’s great, that’s what fairy tales are based on. But what about meeting someone who gets you and your little quirks? Who talks about you in their future, even though you are in different cities? What about building that friendship, knowing that someone isn’t perfect, and not caring? What about that perfect moment where you are smiling down at your phone like a total idiot, without even realizing it, because they just make you that happy? Some will argue that you can’t fall in love without that physical touch. But to me, that’s not true. You fall in love with someone’s soul, with their spirit and their personality. Not because you were able to hold hands or you had an awkward first kiss at the end of a date. Sure, those things may be a way to show affection, but true love, you don’t need that. You definitely want it, don’t get me wrong, but to fall in love, to truly fall in love, maybe we need to take away that. Take away the physical proximity. Do you miss that person when they aren’t there or were they just someone hot to spend time with? Are you at a point where you desperately want to see them in person, but are completely content just talking to them for hours? Because to me, that makes all the difference.

Psychology says that the difference in love and lust lies in the time. If you only have feelings for four months, it’s lust. Anything that lasts longer than that is love. They may be right, but society seems to rush into things so much that sometimes I think the two get easily confused, especially when the physical is such a huge aspect. If you’re not sure if you’re in love or lust, maybe try taking a step back, literally, and seeing the person for who they are. Just another person, without the added physical stuff. It may just make all the difference.

Don’t Regret What You Didn’t Do

They say that when you’re on your death bed, you won’t think about all the things you did do, you’ll be thinking of all the things you didn’t do. Well, I’m not on my death bed, but I already have a couple of things that I didn’t do, that I am now kicking myself for not doing. I had my reasons at the time for not doing them, but now looking back, I realize those reasons were simply one: fear.

For many of us, we don’t mean to, but we let fear dictate our lives. It may be fear of rejection, fear of repeating past mistakes, or just fear of the unknown. No matter what it is, it’s pretty easy to boil it down to some sort of fear. Unfortunately, actually getting rid of the fear and doing something is a lot more difficult. But, if you want to live a full life, it’s pretty necessary.

I didn’t tell a guy how I felt about him years ago back when we were in college together. It wasn’t that there was a lack of opportunity. He and I hung out several times, we went to parties, had classes together, spent some time at the beach together, we even lived in the same dorm at one point. I really liked him, and it seemed like he felt the same, but there was something holding me back. Fear. I was scared of repeating past mistakes, of essentially repeating the past, because sharing how I felt about someone had blown up in my face in the past. Unfortunately, I don’t have that same chance to tell him how I feel because we aren’t in the same city anymore. And I really regret that, because sure, it might have not worked out in my favor again, but what if it had? Because I was afraid of sharing how I felt, I will now never know if he maybe felt the same way. I played it safe, and might have missed out on something great, simply because I was scared.

The same thing can be said for not going on an amazing trip. I know several people who want to travel, but are a bit afraid to. That’s ok, travel is scary. You’re going to an unknown place, possibly one where English isn’t the first language, and you’re going in with no idea of what to expect. Will people be friendly and help you out if you get lost or will someone try to steal from you while you are over there? Travel creates a lot of unknowns and with those unknowns comes a lot of fear. But, I can tell you from experience, traveling is also exhilarating, and some of the sights that you see are breathtakingly beautiful. You get to surround yourself with a history that you may otherwise have never seen before. So don’t let your fear of the unknown get in the way. All life has risk, to live means risking your life in some way. So risk it.

Things may not always go your way when it comes to taking risks and trying things, but you can always try it, and then if it doesn’t work the way you planned, chalk it all up to experience. You never learn or grow if you stay in the same place. You never really know how people feel if you don’t let them know how you feel too. This can be applied to so many aspects of your life, if you only swallow the fear, and have faith that even if it doesn’t work out the way you want, you’ll gain something from it. There’s always a lesson we can learn, and not everything you do will be good. But that’s just life. There are too many variables for us to control everything, which means sometimes we just have to take a leap of faith. And remember, you miss all of the shots you never take.

Best Ways to Get Over Heartbreak

Heartbreak is one of the best and worst things in life. You may be wondering, how is it one of the best? In most people’s experiences, heartbreak absolutely sucks, and there’s not much good in it. But, that’s just because you’re only looking at one side of it. Think of some of the most powerful songs you know, some of the most heart-wrenching books you’ve read, some of the strongest people you know. They are all products of heartbreak, showing that something beautiful can come from something so painful and awful, that some people never even put their hearts out there to begin with. If you are one who is still putting their heart out there, good for you! It’s tough, and it can be especially tough to figure out how to try again when you’re heartbroken. Luckily, I’ve compiled some of the best ways to get over heartbreak, so you can get back out there, and turn your pain into something beautiful.

Since it’s not likely we are all master songwriters, though I really wish I was, you may have to use a different method to get over your heartbreak. So here’s some of my favorites, tried and true, ways to get over heartbreak.

  • Write a letter. Write a letter to your ex, and let everything out. If you dumped him, but are feeling upset about it, if he dumped you, let out all the feelings, let out the anger, the sadness, hold nothing back. And then, throw that letter away. Don’t mail it, don’t send it to your friends, don’t do anything like that. Just get the feelings out, and then throw it away. Yeah, it can be tempting to mail it to him and try to create some perfect ending where he realized he was wrong, but just don’t. Your life isn’t a rom-com, even though we all wish ours was some times.
  • Eat some cookie dough and cry. I know, I know, the raw egg, trust me, when heartbreak has got you down, it’s worth the risk. There is nothing like pulling a tub of cookie dough close, and crying your eyes out. Just know the pain won’t go on forever, and don’t lean on the cookie dough too much. A bit of it is nice, but too much can be dangerous.
  • Write a poem. If you are gifted, write a poem. I used to do this in high school, and somewhere in my little notebook that holds them, I’d put the initials of the guy who it was about. Now, some I have no need to look for the initials, I still remember, but others, it’s quite entertaining to look at and have a rush of memories come flooding back. But this, like writing a letter, can be so cathartic in getting those feelings out, and helping you to come to terms and find that closure.
  • Go out dancing. Hurting and/or angry with a guy? Go out dancing! Line dancing is my go-to for pretty much everything, and it helps with heartbreak too. You know what helps even more? Accidentally running into a cute guy on the dance floor that you then wind up spending the rest of the night chatting with. That’s a good confidence booster 🙂
  • Movie night. Gather up your friends, but don’t put in some romantic movie that’ll make you cry. No, go for a comedy, something that will lighten up your mood, and get you laughing. Nothing helps a bad mood like a good dose of laughter.
  • Plan a getaway. The best way to get over someone is to get away from them. So plan a trip, take a vacation, and just get away from everything. Yeah, they may still be in your life when you get back, but hey, you got a great vacation out of it.
  • Go for a run. This is another one of my favorite go-to’s. Running, or even just walking outside, allows me to clear my head. So when I got dumped via text in college, I went for a run. When I was getting mixed signals from a guy I liked, I hit the nature trails. It’ll help clear your head, and give you those endorphins. Because, as we know, exercise gives you endorphins, and endorphins make you happy… 🙂
  • Feel the pain. This one is huge, even if you take on another way to do it, this is necessary. Let yourself feel the pain, recognize those feelings, and accept that they were real. Even if he didn’t feel the same, or things ended badly, let yourself remember the good stuff and feel the pain. It sounds counterintuitive, but I promise, it’s necessary to fully healing. The best part is, you’ll wake up one day, and the pain will be gone.
  • Forgive. Don’t do it for him. Heck no, he’s not worth it. But you are. So forgive him for you and for your health. Recognize that even without an apology, if you want to move on with your life, you need to forgive him.
  • Recognize how much better you are without him. Maybe you’re still hoping that in 5 years, fate or destiny will bring the two of you back together, hello rom com, and that’s fine, but during this period, allow yourself to grow. I’m a firm believer that God puts people in our lives and takes them away when either we need to grow from them or they’ve fulfilled their purpose in our lives. So, recognize that while he may have seemed like the greatest thing, he wasn’t. At least, not for where you are going. Maybe he is great, and maybe he is one of the nicest guys, that’s good to recognize. But that doesn’t mean he was right for you. It means he was right at that moment, and now that moment has passed. Recognize that you have not decreased in value, that you still deserve something great. Again, maybe he is great, but not the great that you deserve.

Unfortunately, there is no timetable on how long the heartbreak will last. But you know what, take this time and focus on yourself, focus on your friends, your family, on God. Focus on what’s important, and distract yourself from it. Don’t spend the time wallowing, get out there and have a new adventure, try a new restaurant, and find a new layer to yourself. It’s better time spent than stalking his FB page.

Just Started Dating Around the Holidays

You know what can really complicate the holidays? No, it’s not your Aunt Susan after one too many glasses of wine who starts complaining about anything and everything. It’s starting a relationship right before the holidays, and trying to figure out how to navigate this tricky time.

For most people who are in committed relationships and have been for some time, it’s pretty easy to figure out how the holidays go. You either alternate years or you alternate days that you see each other’s family. This way, no one gets left out, and you both fulfill your obligations to see one another. But what if, you just started seeing someone in October? Or November? It’s much too soon to meet the parents or start alternating who gets Christmas or Christmas Eve, so that makes things a little more complicated.

This can be a bit of a tricky situation, because obviously you two want to spend time together, but you may not want to subject them to the kind of crazy that is your family -just remember, we all have crazy family members, not much we can do about it 🙂 However, there is a very simple, and easy remedy to this situation.

Depending on your family, you may only see everyone on Christmas, which leaves Christmas Eve for a romantic stroll through the park or going ice skating or even wandering around looking at Christmas lights, whatever suits you two as a couple. This way, you still get to spend time with your significant other, but you don’t have to worry about the meet the parents. If you have a family that generally takes both days to celebrate, that’s me, then it can be a little harder to figure out. Generally, I have the morning to myself on Christmas Eve, but if you’re doing last minute Christmas present wrapping or shopping, then those hours are blocked off. That’s where the day before or the day after Christmas come in. Since most people get that day off, or are taking vacation for it, you can easily squeeze in some time with your SO.

Just try to remember not to put so much pressure on yourself for this. Yes, it’s Christmas, but if you’re in a new relationship, make sure to take things slow, and take your time. There’s no need to rush things, and you can always start new Christmas traditions next year.

Address Christmas Card Envelopes At Once

Get yourself a glass of wine or tea, and sit down with an hour or two, and address Christmas card envelopes all at once. You’ll knock it out fairly quickly if you force yourself to focus on it.

Rosé with Rachel: Comparisons

It’s hard not to compare yourself to others, we do it even subconsciously, so try to make a conscious choice to only compare yourself to you. Make yourself better, don’t focus on where everyone else is in their journey.

Put Down Your Phone

I know this is ironic, since some of you may be reading this on a phone, but make sure to have some time away from the screen, whether it be watching a movie or eating a meal.

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