2016: The year I grew up

Thursday, 5 January 2017


2016 was one of those years that, quite frankly, I want to forget. Brexit, Donald Trump and celebrities kicking the bucket were bad enough, but never in one year have I witnessed so much heartbreak and sheer bloody misery so close to home.

Reflecting on the year previous for this post was extremely hard to do - especially as it's my first and I don't want to come across negatively. 2016 really pushed me to the limits and nearly sent me off the rails mentally, but looking back there were some highlights that I would like to share with you.

I actually began this blog last October but, honestly, I wasn't in the right frame of mind and I didn't feel like publishing posts for people to read. With the new year finally here, I thought it would be a good chance to start writing again. I've really missed it since graduating in fashion journalism - one of the few highlights of the year gone by.

It's always a cliche but I absolutely love reading peoples' 'highlight' posts from the year previous. It's a great way to reflect on something - and I just like reading them because I'm nebby, too. I've tried to keep mine in chronological order as much as possible, taking you through the positive moments of 2016 despite the storms along the way. Apologies in advance for how long this read is, but I hope you enjoy it all the same!

1. Internships in Newcastle and London:

Whilst studying, I tried to make the most of every opportunity going. I didn't just come out of uni with a degree but first-hand experience as well - at some amazing magazines. Fabulous in February, InStyle in June and Living North in August.

Interning at one of my favourite fashion magazines, InStyle, was a pinch-me moment, and I learnt an awful lot whilst there. I don't regret a moment of it. Then in August, I got to dabble in digital and print journalism for Living North in Newcastle. If I've learnt anything from 2016, it's that you say yes to absolutely everything because the experience you gain is invaluable.

2. Finished uni, received a 1st for my dissertation:

I miss university so much - adult life isn't all it's cracked up to be. Being a fashion journalism student at the University of Sunderland had massive perks - like being able to create your own fashion magazine or website for your dissertation. But creating a 100-page magazine full of interviews and photo shoots etc was bloody hard and I can't count how many meltdowns came with it. When I handed it in last April, relief hit me. A month later, I received my grade - a 1st for a magazine I thought I had fucked up massively. Tears, joy yadda yadda. University, come back!

3. Lived in London for a month in June:

This was a massive wake up call for me. Interning at InStyle meant I had to live in the capital for four weeks. It was always a cliche dream of mine to be a fashion journalist living in London, but this hit me like a ton of bricks. I lived in East London, getting on the tube at Walthamstow Central and getting off at Southwark every day to work. I do miss London life, but I knew it wasn't for me full-time... But, never say never.


4. Graduated with a 2:1 honours degree in Fashion Journalism:

This was the best highlight of 2016. We received our grades through the post, and I was in London at the time so I rang my mum frantically. I thought I had screwed up because she kept saying: "second class honours" and I kept saying back: "is there nothing else?!" Eventually, she saw the 'first division' part and I did an internal scream in the middle of Oxford Street, then celebrated with a Costa coffee. I graduated in July with some of the best people I've ever met.

5. Turned 22:

December 10 came along and I turned 22, and I actually felt like I had grown up? Apparently, banners and balloons are only reserved for those 21 and under - thanks, mum. Despite this, I had an amazing time and as per, tried to cram so much into December by seeing all of my favourite people including my family, and friends from both school and university.


6. Celebrated one year together with Jack, went to Edinburgh:

This is the last highlight of 2016 - hardly any, right? My boyfriend, Jack, who I've known since 2008 took me to one of my favourite cities for our one year anniversary. He loves/hates that it falls on December 28, with my birthday and Christmas days before (best month ever). Cheers for putting up with my many, many meltdowns - you're the best.

In all honesty, I'm nervous for 2017 - but excited all the same.

Thanks for reading x

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