It is with a heavy heart that I write this, the final entry of my 2016 photo journal, but we all knew it was coming, didn’t we? 2016 has been one crazy year, and although it felt like there were far more negatives than positives, I do feel like I went through a personal renaissance of sorts. I managed to pull myself up by the boot straps and rediscover my self worth in more ways than one. I grew up, I listened, I worked on building strong foundations for my mind and my body, and I have learned so much about myself in the process.
In 2016 I wrote my second novel, I got a diploma in interior design, I made a video every day for a month, I stayed hydrated, I lost twenty pounds through diet and regular exercise, and I learned to show myself compassion when I needed it most. I’m so proud of myself for accomplishing so many things throughout this year and if I ever feel lost, I need only look back at how far I’ve come in just one year.
Keeping this photo journal has helped me immensely and in so many ways that it seems impossible to explain, but I’ll try. At the end of 2015 I had lost sight of a lot of what made me “Me” and I was desperate to do something to remind myself of that, and a year-long photo journal seemed like the best chance I had at doing so. Little did I know that this photo journal really would give me something to do each day and take pride in, but it has been a space in which I feel comfortable to share my experiences with others. This photo journal has brought me closer to my friends and family and I feel so proud to have created a space on the internet that is truly my own.
I’m actually getting quite emotional writing this journal entry! I’ve spent the last year documenting my life and sharing it here on my 2016 photo journal and I’m sad that it has to end. I get asked a lot whether or not I’ll continue my photo journal in 2017, and unfortunately, the answer is no and the reason behind it is simply that I need to give myself a break. If I just continue doing the same thing forever I’ll get lazy and it won’t be special anymore, which means that my 2016 photo journal has to end at some point. It only makes sense.
So, what’s next for me? That’s an excellent question, actually. I’m planning on creating a coffee table book for myself with all of the photos from this year and also a few select journal entries, too. When I did this project back in 2008 I really wanted to make a book with all of my photos so this time I think I owe it to myself to have a solid copy in which to remember my 2016 photo journal.
Aside from creating the photo book, I’ve been toying around with the idea of occasionally putting photos up on my blog since I don’t use it much anyway. I love taking photos and I don’t see myself ever stopping, but knowing where to put them is another issue entirely. For now, I’m going to take it easy and use the internet like a normal person (via Twitter and Instagram, of course).
Anyway, now that I’ve got all of that out of the way, I want to end this final journal entry with a few “thank yous”. First and foremost, thank you to everyone who has shown my 2016 photo journal so much relentless support. It hadn’t occurred to me until very late this year that some people have actually been keeping up with my daily photos and musings, and I can honestly say that I am so grateful to have a readership that keeps coming back, day after day. Thank you, sincerely.
Second of all, thank you to my wonderful husband for encouraging me to keep going and for always allowing me to bounce ideas off of him when I have nothing to write. He has truly been instrumental in making my 2016 photo journal a reality, from managing our web server to reminding me to backdate posts once it hits midnight, and by proofreading my entries the minute they go up. Without him, this photo journal would have a lot of typos and a hell of a lot of spam bots. Thank you so much for everything you’ve done for me this year, honey.
Once again, thank you so much for hanging out with me in 2016. Wishing you all the best in 2017.