Happy Friday, ya’ll! It’s almost 2019! Can you believe it? What I love about the New year is the clean slate. It’s starting fresh. I am not an artist, by any means, but if I were to parallel the feeling it would be sitting down to a new white canvas, fresh painter’s palette, and nothing but time at your disposal. A new Year gives us 12 new months to look forward to. As months go by, we experience life’s highs, and lows; all while creating a masterpiece of growth and development.  We never really know what the year’s end canvas will look like. We may make resolutions in January, keep them, or forget about them come February 1st. Never the less, December comes and we learn a bit more about ourselves from the pictures end. We then are gifted the opportunity to paint another portrait soon thereafter.

Metaphor aside, this time of year always brings reflection and it’s always neat to look back and notice all I’ve experienced. For me, 2018 brought much change. Change, and a whole lot of personal development. In light of that, today’s post won’t be the typical New Years resolution post. I do have a few I’ll list throughout, but I’d rather take the opportunity of Friday to list the top five things I’ve learned (about myself and life in general) in 2018.

coat (similar) | sweater (similar) | leggings | booties

One | I stick to my guns – I knew that. I’ve always known (along with my entire family well aware). When I have my mind set on something, the path is straight and narrow. A few set notions this past year validated this focused, disciplined trait. If it’s setting a goal to practice yoga every day, I will bring that mat with me to a hotel room, or chaturanga at 10pm just to stick to the plan. What’s that? A crazy idea to start a blog, not knowing a damn thing about html codes or even where to begin? I’ll rack google’s brain in the early hours for a week straight. (Make that an ongoing appt, I still don’t know what I am doing). Tho there are cons, this characteristic is one I am quite proud of. I’ve successfully (give or take 10+ days) gained a years worth of daily yoga practice under my belt. And this makes 43 posts published on thesarahstories.com. Not bad. Note to self – run with those 3am thoughts. You never know what they’ll amount to.

Two | I am a yeller – I knew when writing this post I’d be transparent. And there it is. I am a very anxious person, and my immediate response from any sort of days disruption or conflict is to yell. I raise my voice at my kids, my dog, my computer.. the mirror. It’s a response I am not proud of. And there have been many instances this past year where it’s escalated to levels that I hate to mindfully relive. We’ve moved – that alone brought a new city, new school, career shift, new friends, new home. It left behind all the same. With it, much emotion, conflict, and responsibility.  I am a work in progress. I feel that my anxiety gets the best of me and I don’t often choose the right response or resolve to tough situations. As stated above, this time of year brings much reflection, and this bullet is one I hope sits on the change forefront.

Three | Friendship is a lifelong course – With the kids in school, they are bound to start making friends. With it comes lessons on the importance of friendship, validity and false awareness. In truth, parental conversations on the subject have been difficult. Difficult because it’s been relatable.

I, too, moved from one neighborhood to another. I, too, am an introvert. I, too, want to fit in, want people to accept me, and have let distance been the root of conflict. My own personal friendships have been on the chopping block this year. I’ve had to dig deep, look in the mirror and examine who I am as a friend first before setting any further expectations.

I am still learning, we all are. I’ll add, it’s always difficult answering tough questions on the subject when you are still learning the ins and outs yourself.  If anything, friendship is a lifelong lesson. There are chapters, ones we don’t always want to turn the page for, and plot twists we never saw coming. Friendships deepened and sadly, diverted in 2018. Despite the drama, I’ve learned more of who I am, and the subject’s teacher I want to be.

Four | I am raising mini-me’s – It’s not coincidence she rolls her eyes as well as her mother, categorizes her play bins, or sets out her outfits for the next day. It’s not by chance he sleeps (at minimum) with a handful of blankets, procrastinates math homework hours before it’s due, or his sweet tooth has hit a worrisome level. I am sure it has something to do with their ages of development.  But every week it seems I experience deja vu, reliving my childhood and witnessing mini versions of a younger me. And tho it may frustrate me to no end, at the end of the day I am grateful. Grateful to be given another year with them. Grateful to be their Momma, watching them grow into whom He’s intended them to be (with a dash of me in the mix).

Now.. I am not entirely sure I want to see the middle aged/high school version of myself anytime soon .. thank goodness I’ve got a few more years before all that comes into play.

Five | I am not 22 anymore – Clearly. I’ve got a few grays and laugh lines to prove it. But more so, I bullet this as an ongoing reminder. There’s no need to play the comparison game. I’ve played it more often than I admit. So she gives a home tour straight out of a magazine, can apply a cat eye q-tip free, eat a whole pizza guiltlessly and go clubbing on a weeknight. So she has 30k followers on Instagram and is beautifully put together all.the.damn.time. You aren’t her, Sarah .. she isn’t her.. she has struggles all the same. Your home is messy with toys and extra laundry because you hold a title of motherhood. Smiles and endless laughter have brought crows feet, much more lasting than a smokey eye. And years have proven sleep is never overrated – the 30s taught you that. Comparison is the thief of joy; Mark my words, I am taking it back in 2019.

I realize this post a little selfish, purging all that’s been on my mind this past week. As stated, this time of year brings a lot of reflection. I understand it may not be as relatable to all, but hope – if anything – it helps surface reflection and give you a positive outlook going into the New Year.



  1. Ashley
    December 28, 2018 / 10:33 pm

    All of this! 🙌 you continue to impress me and I’m so glad our paths crossed a few years ago. You’re a strong, smart and beautiful friend. Over the years I have realized the quality of friends outweighs the quantity. I also know how hard you’ve worked this year establishing your blog and creating it from scratch! Above all I love your raw, candid posts. Can’t wait to see what 2019 brings for you.

    • shancock17
      December 31, 2018 / 9:53 pm

      I cannot say how much your support and friendship means to me. Thank you for being my sound board, friend, and continuous support system in all my crazy endeavors!

  2. Darcy
    December 31, 2018 / 12:14 am

    Very honest! I never would have guessed you were a yeller. We all have our ways to deal with stress. I keep a lot in and I should probably yell more, but I did too much of that when I was a teacher. My kids are a bit older than yours, and they both have some of my best and worst habits. I am so glad I found your IG and blog. I wish you a happy and prosperous new year!

    • shancock17
      December 31, 2018 / 9:52 pm

      Thank you so much for reading and following! Such kind words of encouragement!

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