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Life Lessons Unapologetically Her

2021. My Year In Review.

This time around, I was able to look back at my year and feel a sense of pride and happiness with all that I did and accomplished.

Since we’re still in January, I think I can still say Happy New Year! Plus, who decides when the cutoff time is?

As I anticipate this new year ahead, I reflect on the year we left behind. I can genuinely say I left a year feeling happy to the end for the first time. For the first time, I wasn’t sitting there on New Year’s Eve waiting for the ball to drop so that I could say good riddance to the previous year.

This time around, I was able to look back at my year and feel a sense of pride and happiness with all that I did and accomplished. This isn’t to say that all my other years were complete trash, but it is to say that last year (2021), in particular, was a year of no complaints.

A few grand and memorable moments stand out when I reflect on my year. Here are my top five:

Autographed merchandise from Chanté Moore
  1. I started my year receiving autographed merchandise as a gift from Chanté Moore, who, if you did not know by now, is my favourite vocalist. A couple of months prior, I had reached out to her team to order her 2015 self-help book, Will I Marry Me. I included my address for shipping purposes, and months later, to my surprise, she ended up sending me not only her book but two autographed CDs and an original poster honouring her 1994 album, A Love Supreme, with a message at the back. Let me tell you; I was freaking out for DAYS! Not only that, but later on in the year, she followed me back on Instagram and also allowed me to go on Instagram Live with her and do what I consider a mini-interview. For more than 10 mins, I got to have a 1-on-1 conversation while others looked on. It was a dream come true.

2. Another memorable time throughout the year was when I got to sit down with various guests for my podcast. The best thing about my guests was that most of them were strangers. I was allowed to virtually meet many fascinating women (and one guy) from all over. Not only were they great people to meet, but they were gracious enough to let me interview them and comfortable enough to share some very intimate moments. Many guests described how comfortable I made them, which was amazing to me because that meant that I was doing my job correctly. The most memorable interview, however, comes from Trey Anthony. I had my full-circle moment when I interviewed her because I went from watching her on TV to meeting her in grade eight to interviewing her at 24. That will always be mind-blowing to me.

Trey Anthony is in the middle and me on the right

3. The next memorable moment of 2021 was going back to school. After graduating from York University, I always said I was going back to school at some point. However, I never thought it would be in the middle of a pandemic. Before my current program (Public Relations & Corporate Communications at Seneca College), I felt that online school and myself wouldn’t mix. I couldn’t be more wrong! I took the chance and applied, and I have no regrets. I felt like I was doing something right; I was consistently getting good marks, making friends, and being at ease in the school. Also, since everything is online, not commuting was the biggest game-changer of them all.

4. The next moment that was memorable to me was shooting in a photography studio for the first time. This made my year because I forced myself to step outside of my comfort zone and try something new. This was also a good way for me to take the first step to overcome imposter syndrome. The thought of shooting inside with so much equipment was terrifying at first, but when I saw the results, I felt proud of my efforts, and I am looking forward to my next shoot.

To read my post about Imposter syndrome: click here.

@raveeshr taken by me

5. Lastly, a moment in 2021 that made me happy was when I met and then started to date my boyfriend. He was a big part of my year because I hadn’t dated anyone in over four years before him. Finding someone who not only likes you; but also respects you, supports you, is kind to you, and meets the list you have set for yourself, among other things, is a big deal. Often, we see people (both men and women) not respect the idea of a relationship, compromise their morals and beliefs or lower their standards in hopes of settling with the Okay One instead of the Right One. Luckily for me, he is the complete opposite of the negative mentions, and I feel fortunate to have met him when I did!

Overall, 2021 has shown me a lot and has taught me a lot. I will hold this year close to heart because it was a year where I finally decided to be authentically me, go after what I want and allow life to flow as it would. The self-reflection dating back to the start of the pandemic in 2020 is what allowed me to have a prosperous 2021.

Things may not happen when you want them to, but give yourself grace and time and watch things unfold. Don’t try to be someone that is not unapologetically YOU!


In the comments, let me know your most memorable moment(s) of 2021.

By Natalie Nadeen

Blogger. Podcaster. Believer of Living UNAPOLOGETICALLY. Lover of the 90s.

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