Wednesday, January 18, 2017


Last night, I reflected on the past year. I thought of the many blessings and experiences that I've had. This year was FULL. Full of miracles that I saw as I served as a missionary in Puerto Rico. Full of bittersweet feelings as I left home to come home, from my little Island, to Virginia, and again to Utah. Full of hard work and sweat through the heat of the summer. Full of laughs. Full of tears. Full of adventures that I will never forget. Full of late nights and early mornings. Full of goals and achievements. Full of failures opportunities to learn. Full of service and being served. Full of more blessings than I could ever count despite my best efforts.

Most importantly, I thought of the people who helped to fill this year. This past year was full of introductions. Full of reunions. Full of first encounters. Full of friend-making. Full of goodbyes. Full of hellos. Full of new relationships. There are so many individuals in my life, near and far, recently-met or long-time friends that help make me who I am. I felt so humbled by the multitude and magnitude of those that fill my life with love and light. I felt so blessed as I realized how much they do for me. You all truly take care of me more than I deserve or would ever even expect.

The magnitude of love and kindness that surrounds me was overwhelming. I felt humbled and undeserving of so much love but grateful for it nonetheless. As I prayed I tried to express my gratitude to Heavenly Father for all those He has put in my life. Even as I prayed, I knew it was impossible. I told my God that I didn't expect anything special for my birthday, that the way my friends treat me all year showed me that they loved me. My heart was, yet again, FULL.

However today was also full.

Full of unexpected blessings and surprises.
Full of messages and felicitations.
Full of service and love from those around me.

Today was not the birthday I was expecting. I expected a quite, normal Wednesday. I expected to go to class and then work, returning home to spend time with a few friends. I didn't expect to start the day having a dance party with my roommate. I didn't expect my co-workers to find out it was my birthday and announce it to everyone who passed by. I didn't expect to run into so many friends on campus. I didn't expect the texts, calls, and messages that I received all day. I didn't expect to reminisce and re-recieve birthday messages from my best friend who is on the other side of the world serving as a missionary. I didn't expect my classmates to realize that it was my birthday and drop everything to make me feel like I mattered. I didn't expect my childhood best friend to take me out for ice-cream. I didn't expect to come home to a surprise gift from a far away friend. I didn't expect an incredible surprise party. I didn't expect so many people to come together to make me feel special and loved. I didn't expect ice-cream, cake, and karaoke. I didn't expect to have an egg smashed on my head. I didn't expect to see so many friends from totally different parts of my life. I didn't expect to have so many people knock on my door to wish me a happy day before the night was finished.I didn't expect any of those things, but really, knowing the people that are in my life, I probably should have. Thanks to all of you who are a part of my world. Even those who I haven't seen in years, I think of you and feel blessed by your love. The people in my life mean so much to me. They are the reason that my life is so full. 

As I look back on today, I still feel overwhelmed by the love of those around me. I feel humbled and undeserving of so much love and kindness. Mostly, I feel grateful that my life is so much more full that I could ever imagine.

As I look back on how much happened this past year, I can't deny that 21 was a good year and if today is any indication, 22 will be better than I could ever expect it to be..

So Here's 21 in Review... (and in no particular order or arrangement)

It's been a good one, but I've got a feeling that there are great things to come...