A lot has changed in the last 12 months. After years of gradually, gradually finding my feet and working out who I was 2015 was the year things went supersonic.
It's not a secret that, for a long time I wasn't very happy. I actually really struggled with the world around me. I felt like everything about me was wrong and I should regret every step I had every taken. I made choices because they seemed safe and I accepted situations because I didn't want to take risks. I resigned myself to the idea that this must just be the way life is.
I've written over an over about the power than running, physical activity, can have on your sense of self. For every article I've written I've been my own case study. I stepped out on those cold, dark pavements nearly three years ago and I realised what I could do, what I was capable of. Through each step I took I grew, I accepted risks and saw they were good things, I focused and I got to know myself. Gradually, gradually I worked out what made me happy. Gradually I got brave, and, two weeks before my biggest running challenge yet (Paris Marathon) I upended my life.
The process of upending your life is never easy. I will spare you the details but I will say it had been coming for a long time. Gradually I'd been carving out my identity, working out who I was and what I wanted, ready for the day when I'd take a deep breath and declare 'enough'.
That moment of change was the deepest relief. Suddenly a world of possibility rolled out in front of me. My life could look however I wanted it to. I had endless agency over everything that affected me. I owned the situation. There's amazing freedom in that and I clung to it, if you dared suggest I do anything or impose any rule on my choices I got pretty snappy. I don't want that to change.
The last nine months have been a whirlwind of working shit out. Finding a new home, having new adventures, saying yes and figuring things out. There have been two house moves, two marathons and a masters degree that in equal measures terrifies and enchants me. Friendships have grown and blossomed in ways I can never explain, I live with my best friend in a strange type of chaotic domesticity and I get to hang out with someone awesome who likes me back. It's all rather wonderful.
2015 will be forever the year where I worked out who I was and what I wanted. It will also be the year where I decided that I would always be brave enough to say it and never to compromise. it is the year where I worked out you're never responsible for the happiness of anyone else, that you don't have to listen to anyone else when it comes to your decisions and that if Emma is pissed you just say 'yes dear' while she pokes your face to make a point.