Appreciation for 2017
I have so much appreciation for everyone in my life. Wether they be my boyfriend, family, friends, or professors, I appreciate every one of them. This year has been tough for me. I started school again, after a semesters leave, and had a total breakdown at the end of spring. I then promptly jet set off to Europe for an archeology dig. It is only now, at the end of the year, that I feel like things are finally coming together for me.
Complaining about Europe seems so, lame, but I was in the midst of the worst depression I have ever experienced. I suppose I was trying to outrun my own thoughts. Of course that isn't how life works-- I spent the majority of the dig full of self doubt, and wanted to go home. Due to the mental state I was in, I should not have left the United States.
Spain is beautiful. It is warm, enveloping, and has fantastic food culture. The ocean was a 10 min walk from the residence, and sitting on the rocks above the sea was a nightly routine. I'm positive that's the only thing that kept me sane. I traveled through Switzerland on my way to and from Spain, and found solstice in the semi-familiar landscape. Upon return from Europe, I set off to Washington D.C. (one of my favorite places!) then onto Boulder, CO. The rest of my summer was spent basking in the Montana sun.
Mental struggles aside, I've been battling a food allergy that has quickly taken over my life. I went thru a period of time where I feared food. Though I'm getting a better grip on it, I still worry about what I'm eating, and even what i'm purchasing in the store. It has, however, lead me to making better food choices.
I promise this isn't a pity post- it's far from it. It's about appreciation.
2017 has given me so many things to be appreciative for. For Dylan, who has constantly believed in me and helped me maneuver difficult situations. I am forever grateful for his presence, and become the sappiest person ever when discussing him. I appreciate all my friends: The ones in Montana, who among them helped me secure a year long processing project. The friends in Spain, who helped me enjoy field school. And my friends who live far from me. You all help me in ways (and memes) you'll never know. My family, who supports me in every way, including the Ortons. Finally, I have appreciation for my professors who worked with me while I was struggling, and provided me with some crazy opportunities.
In August I started a cataloging project for the Billings Curation Center. I'm processing bison bones, and am stoked to have the entire academic year to play with some bones. I recently received a grant to return to Ireland summer of 2018; and accepted a public history internship working with the El Salvador Refugee Memories Project. I am invited to sit on a panel of students for the upcoming Dr. Paul Farmer speech; and attend the Masters Class. Had I not experienced the hiccups earlier, I would have never received the opportunities I have now.
I suppose the biggest thing I appreciate is me. I'm getting closer to graduating. (I'm officially a senior!!) I have skills that are appreciated.But most importantly, I have a strong support system who makes me belive in myself.
I guess it's time to get ready for 2018. Ps. I graduate in 2018. ;)
here's a gallery from the year: enjoy