Looking back on the bumpy road that I call ‘2011’

As always the last year has been full of ups and downs and all kinds of changes and opportunities.

I truly started my year out with a bang when I rolled my car on Jan. 15th and walked away unscathed. I thank my lucky stars and a few guardian angels for that fact.

With a new car and an internship for college coming up I was on my way to where I wanted to end up and happy with life. My internship turned into a permanent position and eight months later here I am with a job that I love.

For every good this past year it seemed there was a bad as I broke my ankle in three places on April 30th and had a plate and eight screws put in to put me back together.

I graduated from college with a bright purple cast and hobbling across the stage on crutches. That is a memory I will never forget, as it was a lot of work to get to the stage and back to my seat.

Camping season started out a little bit more unusual than in past years as getting in the prowler required me to waterproof and bump-proof my leg. A water proof bag, then a pillow, then some duct tape, then a garbage bag and some more tape kept me from getting my cast wet or bumping my already broken ankle. Camping season came and went with new memories made, videos and photos to be shared, and campfire stories never to be forgotten.

This year also involved moving home from college residence, moving in with friends, moving from there to another friend’s place and finally moving in to my own apartment. My dad informed me I’m not allowed to move again unless a moving company is hired.

As with what happens in life, this year also saw the passing of my grandfather. A man who I had loved all my life and who I adored and admired was suddenly gone.

I sang at his funeral and am not quite sure how I got through it without a single tear, but in so many ways I think I knew how much he was enjoying it and that’s what got me through.

One of the most exciting events this year was my mother’s birthday. This was not just any birthday though, it was her 50th.

I planned for six months and invited friends and family from near and far. We had family from Manitoba, friends from northern B.C., family from Edmonton and Calgary and many more friends that travelled out for the event.

Every year seems to have its moments where we wish it would be over already or when we wonder why all the bad things have to happen to us. This year was no different for me, but I’ve learned to look at bad experiences as just another stepping stone.

Breaking my ankle and rolling my car were both horrific and somewhat life-altering experiences, but I learned something from both events that taught me to persevere and not give up. I also learned that my family will be by my side no matter what, and that sometimes asking for help is the only way to go.

I also turned 21 this year, which was exciting in itself. But to top it off I had the most lovely birthday supper with my family and some very good friends.

I can’t complain about the past year and all the lessons learned. People have come and gone through my life in the last year, friends have been made and some have been lost. But through it all I wind up looking forward to another year of ups and downs and some of the things that may be yet to come in 2012. Nobody can ever predict what a year will bring but I am fully prepared to sit back, settle in and just enjoy the ride.