In 2018, I learned a whole lot – to put my health first, that heartbreak is inevitable, and true friendships are found in those who uplift you in times of success and listen in times of distress. I learned that living with an autoimmune disease is incredibly difficult – but with the love and support of those surrounding me, I can get through the toughest of times. I learned time and time again this year that not everyone shares the same kind of heart as I. Experiencing hurt and heartache are bound to occur, though it’s the lessons and ways in which we deal with the hurt and heartache that shape who we become moving forward. This year, I developed new friendships, said goodbye to toxic ones, and cherished the relationships that remained a consistent part of my life. 2018 taught me to stand up for myself and what I believe in – especially my self-worth. Although this year was challenging in a lot of ways, it was also full of growth and self-discovery. I traveled to new cities, got a college degree and dyed my hair blonde… all of which filled my soul with such joy. As I enter into 2019, I can’t help but feel inspired and grateful. I feel positive, empowered and truly optimistic. There is something so magical about a new beginning… cheers to the new year!