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On June 21st, 2020, I celebrated my 25th birthday. I am officially a quarter of a century, woohoo! This past year has been one of the most beautiful but also one of the most challenging of my life. I got to travel more than I ever have and got to attend numerous family gatherings and weddings. But so much has not gone as planned and I lost loved ones near and dear to my heart. This was a year of growth, a year of trusting that I am on the right path, and a year of learning more about myself and my privilege as young white female. Here is just a tid bit of what I learned (or was reminded of) in last 365 days.

1. Life is too short to be anything but your unapologetic self.

2. Being an activist is multi-faceted, EVERYTHING is interconnected.

3. Through struggle comes great strength.

4. The ONLY person’s approval you need is your own.

5. During these trying times finding joy and laughter is a radical act.

6. When in doubt, dance it out.

7. Solitude on a mountain trail is pure bliss.

8. We can’t always control what happens to us, but we can control how we choose to react.

9. Don’t let the fear of failure hold you back from trying.

10. You are NOT limited to just one dream.

11. Knowledge plus action creates movement.

12. The combination of peanut butter and chocolate is hands down the best flavor combo to ever grace this planet.

13. Meet others where they are at.

14. It’s okay to change course.

15. It’s okay to embrace your feminine side.

16. Get off your phone and get outside.

17. The smallest action can make someone’s day.

18. Never underestimate the power of a hand written letter.

19. Trust your gut.

20. Never be too proud to admit you were wrong.

21. It’s okay to change your mind when presented with new information.

22. Stop comparing yourself to others; no good will come of it.

23. You can never say “I love you” too many times.

24. Speak up and speak out for what is right, even if it is uncomfortable.

25. Life’s short, so do what makes YOU happy.

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