On June 29, 2012, I created a list of 101 things I wanted to complete in 1001 days. Today is day one thousand and one, and I have a confession to make: I did not complete all 101 goals on my list.
To be completely honest, I’m okay with not reaching some of the smaller goals. Sure, I didn’t finish coloring that garfield coloring book. I didn’t make a year in pictures album or start an herb garden. I didn’t even try to learn how to use a pogo stick, but that’s probably a good thing.
I didn’t do a lot of the things on my list, and there are a few that I’m kind of sad I missed. I didn’t reach my final goal weight of 150 pounds. I didn’t donate all of my clothes over size 18. I’m still living at home and I never ran a marathon, but that doesn’t mean I have to stop working towards these goals just because 1001 days have passed.
So what exactly did I do in the last 2.5+ years? For starters, I did complete 51 of my goals. It might only be half of the list, but I’m pretty damn proud of those 51 things.
When I first made this list, I wanted to work on my writing and to eventually start vlogging on YouTube, but I was too insecure to start. So I made blogging a goal on my list, and on January 12, 2013, I published my first post on this blog. A little more than five months later I posted my first vlog on my YouTube channel.
Through both WordPress and YouTube I found friends and communities that encouraged me to do the things I love and the things that I would have otherwise been too scared to do. The 101 in 1001 list became less about checking off items on a list and more about becoming the person I wanted to be. It became about testing myself, working towards things that mattered, learning to love my body, and learning to be myself without apologizing for it.
So, without further ado, here are a handful of the 101 things that meant the most to me:
I met my first two major weight loss goals and have lost a total of 130 pounds.
I got to run across the finish line of my first 5K with my mom running right next to me
I fell in love with reading again and read well over 100 books.
I started to learn how to cook and tried at least 30 new recipes
As a way to challenge myself to be more comfortable in my own skin, I set goals to buy a dress, wear high heals, and wear something sleeveless in public. When I set these goals I didn’t really see them coming to fruition, but guess what?
I also did a few things I never thought I could do, like studying at Oxford and speaking to a room-full of people about something I thought was interesting
I tried to build a snowman, which still technically counts even though he didn’t really have a head
I went on a four week road trip with a dear friend
I didn’t complete all 101 goals on my list, but I’m satisfied with where this little experiment has gotten me. I’ve been pushed and pulled and thrown beyond the boundaries of my safe bubble of comfort more times than I can begin to list. I’ve met so many amazing people, both online and offline, many of which are now some of my closest friends. The way I see and understand the world has been challenged and tested as I’ve travelled outside of this little corner of Michigan, and I am better for it.
These last one thousand and one days have been kind of wonderful, and if I can pass on anything from the experience it is this: Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself. This world is too big and this life too short to live a quiet and safe existence.