The Closing of the Year

What a year it has been! Initially, this was going to be a “State of Kate” post, but I think it needs to be something a little different. After all, this time of year is all about reflection, isn’t it? It’s good to look back and see what went right, what didn’t go so well, what we’d prefer never happen again, and what we’re going to do differently next year.

What Went Right

Better Kate than Never. I started this blog in August, after becoming dissatisfied with my directionless, uninspired old blog. I feel like BKTN suits where I’m at in my journey, and that I’m reaching and helping more people. My goal was always to inspire and empower, and I feel like this is the right vehicle to get my voice out there.

Writing and Editing. I never thought going into this year that I could make either of those things a reality in my life. They were hobbies and things other people did . . . not me. But “changing the story” was my motto for 2018, and acknowledging and accepting my talents has been a huge reward (and relief).

Kempo. I was promoted four times in 2018! In our dojo, we have two kinds of rank tests: simple and milestone. The latter is reserved for big promotions like graduating from beginner to intermediate, and then from intermediate to advanced. I had my first milestone test in January when I tested for my blue belt. My next three tests were difficult but “simple.” My last test was at Kempo Camp, three solid days of kicking butt and being kicked in the butt. I survived it, so I know I’m a bad-ass.

Me in black and pigtails, running through a technique at Kempo Camp for Sensei. See, told you I’m bad-ass.

What Didn’t Go So Well

January Sugar Cleanse. At the beginning of 2018, my husband and I decided to go on a sugar cleanse to help jump-start better eating habits and rid our systems of the food we’d been bingeing on all December. We struggled, but found some shaky footing . . . until my husband passed a gallstone. Which, ironically enough, happened because he was making better choices and lost a bunch of weight.

Self-Care. I struggled all year to do things that were fulfilling to me, myself and I. Something else always came first, someone else needed something instead, or my schedule got away from me. As a result, I spent a lot of time feeling frustrated, overwhelmed, and overlooked.

Weight Loss. With the sugar cleanse, I lost eight pounds. I really wanted to keep that momentum going, but as I returned to a more “normal” way of eating, most of the weight came back and Would. Not. Budge. It didn’t matter how few calories I ate or how active I was, I stayed the same. It was frustrating, to say the very least.

I’ll stop sharing this photo when it stops being right.

What Doesn’t Need to Happen Again

I have a lot of friends whose list in this category is pretty long this year. Personally, I’d prefer that my depressive and anxiety-ridden slumps not happen again anytime soon. The self-doubt and low self-esteem that go hand-in-hand with the depression and anxiety were are not welcome faces, either.

Blanket forts are fun, but you shouldn’t have to live in one full-time.

What Will be Done Differently

State of Kate. When I first started this blog, a weekly update on my progress seemed like a great idea. However, I ran out of time to post other things, so my feed became an endless cycle of wins and womps. Starting in 2019, this series will be posted on the last Friday of the month. I still plan on posting at least once weekly, but this will give me the space to share more than how many Doritos I’ve eaten.

Training. With the turning of the year, the proverbial shit gets real for my next Kempo belt test. From here on out, all of my tests will be milestones; this one will be for my brown belt. It’s a five-hour ordeal, and I need to be physically and mentally ready for it. For the next several months, I hope to ramp up the intensity of my at-home workouts, and modify my eating habits to ensure I’m properly fueled.

Career. I am dedicating 2019 to shifting my career from a hands-on, full-time massage therapist to a full-time, work-at-home, freelance writer and editor. I’m working hard at manifesting this shit, and it’s gonna happen. I want this so badly I can taste it. It tastes like candy. Sweet, sweet candy. Gimme.

Self-Care. My goal for 2019 is to be better and more consistent at making time for myself. I’ve learned that if it isn’t on my schedule or in my massive list of things to do, it won’t get done. So, I’ll be adding self-care to my weekly schedule. Whatever it ends up looking like, it will be 100% mine. Because, damn it, I’m worth it.

Sunshine and green grass are great for self-care.

I guess on some level, this was my last State of Kate for 2018 after all. There were wins, womps, and wobbles all over the damned place. But . . . looking back? All win. And I’ll take that any day of the week.

How was your 2018? Winny, wompy, wobbly? How are you planning on making 2019 your year to kill it? Leave a comment!