Tag Archives: Goals

I’m back!

7 Jan

No, the break wasn’t long. However, yes, it was needed. Though I’m still in the stage of adjusting some things about my current life that had previously been on the back burner, I realized that I didn’t want this blog to be kicked to the back of my mind like so many other things. This blog has helped me too much to be at any place other than the forefront of my thoughts (right alongside academics, friends, and family).

One of my goals (not resolutions, but goals, or something I expect to stick around and even grow) for this year is to complete a rough draft of my memoir by the end of 2013. That being said, I am planning to spend as much time as I can to writing my memoir, which means my blog posts will no longer appear daily. I’m thinking of going bi-weekly or even weekly so that I actually might have something to say rather than feeling like I’m constantly rambling on about nothing. Though in the past I have shared certain memories related to my Cerebral Palsy on this blog (and have worked them into my memoir), I primarily began doing that because I was in need of support and feedback. Thanks to all of my lovely followers who have provided just that. However, now that I am beginning to not exactly need the encouraging feedback quite as often, I think it would be best to restrict my written memories to the Word document of my memoir. It seems safer that way. Plus, then my number of pages of my memoir might actually increase (hey, imagine that!). However, that doesn’t mean I won’t still be talking about my writing or what I’m facing on a daily basis in regards to my CP. I’ll still be sharing those snippets, and on those hard days when life just seems to knock me to the ground, every ounce of encouragement from all of you will be just what I need.

As the New Year came and went, I realized how often I was telling so many people: “I’m writing my memoir!” without actually doing much about it. Though I am not necessarily planning to give myself a deadline (good writing comes in time), I do want to move forward with my memoir. I’ve been in a pretty huge rut for quite a while, and even though I have never been a fan of outlines (normally, I’d prefer to just write, write, write and not care where it was doing), I think using an outline could provide me with a greater sense of direction in regards to my memoir, which is exactly what I need at this point. I don’t know how much it will help, but I’ll just have to see I guess.

Along with writing comes reading, and I have written numerous book reviews on this blog in the past. Today I signed up for GoodReads (and have decided to enter a Book Reading Challenge). My goal is to read 100 books in one year. Though that seems like a bit much right now, I know how much I read. And if I don’t complete the challenge, oh well. I just know that I will need a way to balance out all the writing I’m planning to do (plus college classes and friendships). Also, I think all the reading will be a nice break from focusing so heavily on my own life through writing my memoir. I think it was Stephen King who said: If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”

It will be one heck of a year filled with tons of writing, tons of reading, academics, and as much fun as I can squeeze in! Thank you to all of you who have continued with me on this journey, despite the fact that this blog has changed its focus so many times. I appreciate each and every one of you so much!

“Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It’s like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can’t stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.” – from Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott

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The problem with the word ‘disabilities.’

26 Sep

“Part of the problem with the word ‘disabilities’ is that it immediately suggests an inability to see or hear or walk or do other things that many of us take for granted. But what of people who can’t feel? Or talk about their feelings? Or manage their feelings in constructive ways? What of people who aren’t able to form close and strong relationships? And people who cannot find fulfillment in their lives, or those who have lost hope, who live in disappointment and bitterness and find in life no joy, no love? These, it seems to me, are the real disabilities.” -Fred Rogers

Due to the presence of a new person in my life, I’m slowly beginning to understand what has set me apart from so many others with a similar disability (and even those who are non-disabled): my drive. Yesterday, this particular new person in my life said: “You have incredible drive. It’s what I like about you. If you’re standing at the bottom of a hill and you know that you’ve got to get to the top, you’re going to find a way to reach the top, even if it means that you have to push yourself harder than ever before. I admire that so much.”

Even though I’ve known that I’ve had an incredibly strong drive for the majority of my life, giving up or walking away from something just because it’s hard has been something that I don’t consider often simply because in my mind, in terms of my disability, I’ve never had another option. I pushed through because I had to. However, due to the current new person in my life, I’m beginning to see that my drive has the potential to help not just me, but so many others around me as well. Also, over the last few months as I have done more introspection, I have come to understand that focusing on my abilities is a much better way to live rather than focusing on the ways that I am limited on a daily basis. Though that may sound obvious, I can’t tell you how easy it is to slip into the hole of self-pity. Even though for my entire life I have never wanted to accept pity from others, I place so much pity on myself through my own thoughts and actions. Maybe that has to do with my low self-esteem or something else. However, I have a gut feeling that this new person in my life has the ability to change many of the negative outlooks that I’ve had towards myself for so long.

Though I may say that I have a physical disability on a regular basis, maybe I’m focusing on the wrong things. Maybe I should be focusing on the things that I’m able to do rather than those that I can’t. I know from personal experience that this is so much easier said than done. However, when a new person has come into my life who thinks so highly of me, I owe it to both of us to at least try.

Strive To Reach Your Goals!

10 Dec

Happy Saturday everyone! After enjoying coffee and scones at a bakery with my mom and Malia this morning, Malia and I hit the road back to Asheville. Time away from campus was nice, but it’s good to be back too. Since I’m not too worried about my last final (Psychology) on Tuesday, I’ve been getting some basic things out of the way so I’m that much more ready to head home on Tuesday (ya know, washing clothes and sheets, vacuuming, taking out the trash, tidying up, etc).

I’ve always liked being clean and organized, and since finals have kept me pretty busy, I hadn’t really had time to clean up much. Thankfully, I’m getting a lot of that done today! The end of the semester (once finals are done) is always a huge relief. All academics are out of the way until January. I don’t have to think about homework or classes until I return to campus for next semester. I can go home and read a lot, spend time with my family, watch movies, hang out with friends, and just enjoy some down time before school cranks back up again.

As the end of the semester is coming to a close, it’s got me reflecting on my last few months in Asheville. Here are some goals that I set for my first year at UNC Asheville (bold ones were met, non-bold haven’t been met yet):

  • Be happier than I was at Wofford (DONE!)
  • Make good friends! (want to make more next semester obviously)
  • Develop a good variety of Asheville restaurants (Met about halfway. Restaurants so far: Mela, Salsa’s, The Lab, Over Easy Cafe, Urban Burrito, Nine Mile, Tod’s, YoLo and Asheville Pizza and Brewing)
  • Change one thing about myself (Have begun eating a little healthier. Favorites as of now: Jalapeno Pimento Cheese, flatbread crackers, black bean hummus (and black beans in general), spinach (either on pizza or in pasta), and granola mixes (all from GreenLife). Also changed my wardrobe some thanks to my friend Skidmore)
  • Get involved on campus (Planning to write for the campus newspaper next semester and maybe join a singing group)
  • Participate in campus events (WATCHING BASKETBALL!)
  • Get information about studying abroad in Ireland (Hoping to go this coming summer)
  • Get a new hobby (Restorative yoga!)
  • Become more socially comfortable (almost there!)
  • Go to the Orange Peel or The Grey Eagle to enjoy live music (planning to go see Marc Broussard at the Orange Peel in February)
  • Attempt to not get quite as attached to people as I have in the past (Getting there slowly)
  • Learn to cook a variety of dishes I enjoy (planning to work on that next semester since I’ll hopefully be living off campus next fall)

Overall, I feel really good about how things have gone in Asheville so far. I’m happy, I feel like I fit, and I know that there is a lot of things to look forward to next semester and the coming years. I’ve become conscious of things that I want to change about myself. It’s not easy, but sometimes change just takes time to adapt to.

What have been some of your goals the past few months? Have you met some of them?