As 2015 is finally coming to a close, I can’t help but reflect back on the past year of my life and think about all the things that have happened. Especially with the magnitude of college and the changes that accompany it, I think I can say that just in the past five or so months alone, I have grown exponentially as an individual academically, mentally, and spiritually.

Here are a few memorable things that have happened this year:

  • I was accepted into the beautiful Belmont University; what’s even crazier is that I was interviewed for and was named one of their Presidential Scholars.
  • I attended senior prom with my beautiful friends (and had my first IHOP experience afterwards).
  • I concluded my ninth season with the Knoxville Symphony Youth Orchestra by performing Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4.
  • I graduated high school!!
  • My family and I had our first cruise experience to the Caribbean (10/10 would recommend).
  • I moved to Nashville, Tennessee, where I have the opportunity to study what I love.
  • I have told my name, hometown, and major to more people than I can remember, but through this I have made invaluable friendships with people who inspire me to grow and to be my best self.
  • I found my church home at Crosspoint Church.
  • I went and saw my first Broadway play (one word: BEAUTIFUL).
  • I shared the stage with 700 other BU musicians in Christmas at Belmont, hosted by Grammy award-winning artist Kathy Mattea and nationally broadcasted on PBS.
  • My dad, brother, and I made a spontaneous weeklong trip to Washington, D.C. and New York.

Looking back on it now, 2015 has been nothing short of a great year, and as 2016 is about to begin, I am filled with anticipation for what is to come. In the course of this next year, I hope that I will try new things, make new friendships while still developing the old ones, explore more foreign and profound concepts and ideas, visit new places, and most importantly make the most of every opportunity.

Have fun celebrating tonight, and I hope you have a wonderful 2016!