2022 in a Nutshell

2022... what a messy, flabbergasting ride.

A picture I took in Yishun, on our way back to the airport

If at the end of last year I pondered on how fast time glided past, this year, I instead try to decipher the duality of time elapsing too slowly and quickly at once. I kid you not: most months crawled like a snail, inclining toward the peak of some impossible-to-cut-through parameters, all due to its nature, which apparently became a paranoia I so badly want to rub cleanI wrote a truckload of posts about how stressful those time were as a pathetic, obvious attempt to keep myself saneyet today, here I am standing on the last day of 2022, excited for the thought of new pages and starting afresh after what felt like forever in a blink of an eye.

In a nutshell, 2022 was a year of working hard and playing just as much. I traveled more than I had done these past few years, and with that, I spent significantly more too. An office gathering in Malaysia, a business trip to Kendari, and a week-worthy getaway to Singapore with my family. I disregarded my initial intention to buy a DSLR camera and instead rewarded myself with a new phone.

'Rewarding' might sound a little excessive, but let me remind you that the truth is usually ugly, and earlier this year, work felt harder than ever. My first peak season turned out to be a long insane ride down the rabbit hole. If I were to drop together with Alice the Wonderland heroine, she would be relieved to know that the blow was not as brutal to her as it had been to me. As if the hole hadn't been deep enough, the months following the fallout were even frantic, though what happened next was a blur of thrusting wildly as an attempt to prevent one from going stark raving mad. I remember deactivating my bookstagram accountwhat initially started as a mere temporary plan has become more permanent over time.

The fact that I somehow managed to complete my reading goal, under those circumstances, came out as a surprise to me: according to Goodreads, I finished 25 out of 25 books and read a total of 9.101 pages this year. The most iconic books I read would be the sequels of the Red Queen series by Victoria Aveyard (oh my, how is it possible? It feels like years have passed by since I last read these books), The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood, Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren, For the Love of Friends by Sara Goodman Confino (an underrated one, this one), and also my Percy Jackson and the Olympians reread.

I read far less than I did last year but on the other hand I stumbled upon a few shows that were worth spending half my free time on: Stranger Things, Scream Queens, Wednesday, the third season of Emily in Paris, and I'm currently watching The Big Bang Theory. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days starring Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey has become one of my comfort movies too, toughly competing with Holidate, the past few years defending champion, while I've also been screaming my lungs out to Taylor Swift's Midnight album. What a vibe.

Nevertheless, I must say that my surviving this year with work and all the other minutiae wouldn't be possible without God by my side. I admit, there had been times when simply going through life felt more and more like a terrifying attempt. Weekends had become more of a hollow gap of me worrying about every little thing and obsessing over every possibility should a mistake appear. But then my sister's words slapped me hard in the face: "I mean, you have God. You pray and go to Sunday services and all. What's the point of that if you worry about everything every time? You should put more faith in Him. He will guide you in every step in life, you know." I had no idea my little sister could be that wise.

It's a great reminder, an alarm that I deep down need to hear. It reminds me to never stop putting faith in God, to remember that whatever rock is on the path I'm walking on, He know and He care. Maybe I'll vent now and then to my mother, who, by the way, is an amazing listener, but I want to take different approaches in life, and rather than starting with the environment, I should start it from the inside of me instead.

Cheers for a better 2023 ahead, for a happier year, and for more well-spent time with our loved ones. Let's not forget that everything happens for a reason, and if it's hard to make out what good is supposed to come out of a bad situation, lessons learned could be a good enough reason, just like how 2022 has been a helpful example for me.