It Doesn’t MAtter How You Started, What Matters Is How You Finish: Goodbye 2020, Hello 2021

I can’t believe it’s 2021!

It seems like January 2020 was just yesterday. Not sure if this resonates with you too, but there were a lot of things that went on in 2020 that it felt like it passed by like a speed of light. It was the fastest year of my life, as far as I can remember. Part of it was because of COVID, but most of it was because of my personal life.

My year started shitty! Few days from today’s last year, I found myself crumbling and in pieces under my duvet when I ended my year and a half relationship with a man who I thought I would build a life with. I was about to sign a mortgage contract with this man, but for some gut wrenching feeling reason, I became so bitter about everything in our relationship and it started to chip away. Long story short, we broke up the day before we signed the contract, he got into a relationship straight right after (with a girl on his shift who I never knew about. LOL!), got her pregnant after 3 months, and got engaged a few months later. Hmmm… I know… You be the judge. When there’s smoke, there’s always fire. *wink*

Aside from this, we had COVID (need I say more about this?), stolen electric bike, cancelled flights and travel plans, a bitchy nagging housemate who acts worse than a nagging toxic parent (I almost reported her to the police for harassment, and to be honest she was the worst part of my year – yes, worse than my break-up at the start of the year. LOL! Gives me the creeps just thinking about it!!), grandfather died and I could not go home to see and support my family, and just the constant anxiety of going to work everyday feeling like I will be going through a battlefield as a soldier without a weapon and a shield. These all affected my mental and emotional health, and I am not going to lie, it affected my work too.

Yet there was something about 2020 that made it the most meaningful year of my entire life so far. I started to reflect on it day by day, months by months, and asked myself what do I have that I am thankful for? What do I do with these consequences in my life to make myself better? What have I been missing? What do I want to achieve?

If this was the last year of my life and I have nothing left, what would be the most important thing? I started thinking about my spirituality, an aspect of my life that I kept on avoiding. When I was young, there was always a little voice in my head telling me to remember God and pray, yet I dismissed it almost all the time. That voice became weaker as I grew up, but it never went away, even if I was a rebellious person. It was as if saying “I’ll keep whispering to you until you find your way back.”

During the lockdown when we were all forced to stay at home, I had time to practice my solitude and I heard my inner self more, started praying and talking to God, cried to him and read through His words, fasted and tried hard not to miss a day. I prayed more on the last 10 nights of Ramadhan. I had never prayed so hard my entire life as if I felt I was going to pass out.

My view in life started to change. Of course Melissa! You should know this from psych class, dopamine is released when you do things that are fun, but guess what? More dopamine is released when you decide to follow your morals and values – tried and tested.

I started to forgive myself, the people who hurt me and the people who keep hurting me. Although, I’d say, I’m not a pacifist and I don’t let anyone step on me, I found that I could let go of the things out of my control a lot easier. You can never control what other people do nor the environment you are at, but you can always control what’s inside you, and that’s what’s important. Control the turmoil in you and if you find that you are in a toxic environment with negative people – LEAVE!! It will be difficult at first especially when you cherished the relationship, but trust me, it will all be worth it! As long as you know yourself and your value, don’t lose faith and just keep moving forward and upward, there will be so much better replacements on things you lose along the way.

When you feel like everything is a chaos in your life, just remember that God created another puzzle for you with an amazing picture better than the previous one. you have to solve it so you can appreciate the beauty of this puzzle he had designed for you.

-me-

Roll your eyes on me as these all may sound so corny, but I learned how to trust His plans for me. I was a sinner, a really naughty one, and yet I never felt abandoned by His divine intervention. I must have done something right to deserve something really good – enlightenment and guidance. This started my positive journey this year.

Reading a lot of personality development books helped me become more self aware, aiming everyday to become a better version of myself. We aim to take care of our patients HOLISTICALLY, why not do this to you, right? Mind, body, heart and soul. Every aspect of your life should have equal priority. I always envisioned myself to be a positive influence to the people around the world. However, I can’t aim in changing the world without starting with myself.

Aside from getting a better grasp of my religiosity, before this year ended, I got my stolen bike back, learned to do a headstand during my yoga sessions, had a better relationship with my parents, stronger bond with my siblings and cousins, deeper meaningful friendship with my long term friends, gained new solid friends, got a promotion as a specialist palliative support nurse (WOOOHOOO!), met a great man who I incredibly have the best connection with-mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, found a perfect place to move in (amazingly just at the time I needed it the most), and most of all, ALHAMDULILLAH, I AM COVID FREE!!

Yes, year 2020 started so bad for most of us, but this year made us realise a lot of other things that are far more important: life and relationships – with yourself, the people you love and care about, and most importantly, with your creator. To Him we belong, and to Him we will return.

Year 2021 is starting worse for all of us, but last year’s events made us more resilient and wiser. Hope is here. It doesn’t matter how this year started, what matters is how we will end it. Let’s all survive this year! x

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