This stage in my life is very transitional. I am just starting to discover who I want to be, though I thought that's what high school/college was about. I will never deny that my childhood & college years have helped shape me into who I am now, but part of living in the same state surrounded by the same people meant there wasn't a lot of room for change in personality. Granted, I'm not saying I have changed my personality, I am just growing more and more to love who I am and becoming exceedingly happy to share it with the world. Part of that is due to moving to a new city/state and part of that is just what happens to you in your 20s.
So in this transition, I've been doing a lot of thinking about who I want the world to see when they see me. As much as I have tried to deny it and judged others for it, there have been many different "versions" of myself over the years: "Professional Katie", "Sarcastic Katie", "Texas Katie", "New York Katie", "Creative Katie", "Shy Katie", "Goofy Katie", "Awkward Katie", and many many more. It's not like any of these are polar opposites from each other or anything, they just all have their own set of strengths and weaknesses. But no more. Why can't I strive to be the best version of myself, all the time, no matter where I am or who I'm with? "Because that's setting a pretty impossible goal for yourself Katie, that's why!" Sure sure, that's true. But I can sure as heck try my hardest.
I've been working on this (me) for sometime now and recently thought it'd be a good idea to share. When I thought good and hard about the characteristics in myself that I wanted people to really see, I couldn't help but think about the nature of others that have inspired me all my life. That's when it became a no brainer... Anne Shirley!
Anne of Green Gables was, and still is to this day, one of my favorite literary stories of all time. I remember seeing the book for the first time on a shelf in my mom's craft room and being immediately drawn to it. I remember plopping down on my super cool pink and white striped beanbag chair and watching the series VHS's we had rented from the library (well that didn't make me sound ancient or anything...). I think that was the first time I watched 3 movies (which meant about 6 VHS tapes) over and over and over again for days, that's what binge watching looked like before Netflix kids. And OK, confession time: Gilbert Blythe was my first and forever crush. But that's a whole other post :) I'm here to talk about Anne Shirley.
Anne is fearless. Anne is sincere. Anne is kind. She is a daydreamer, she is a good friend, she is an optimistic adventurer.
Anne Shirley is a lover of life.
These are the traits I love most in any person, but what I love even more is how Anne Shirley lives them. She taught me to fearlessly accept who I am and be proud to show the world. She taught me to be genuine in thought and belief. She taught me that kindness matters. She taught me to never ever EVER stop dreaming, imagination is one of life's greatest gifts. She taught me the importance of being a good, loyal, forever friend. She taught me that adventures are worth having and that enjoying the anticipation can be half the fun because "nothing can prevent you from having the fun of looking forward to them.". And she taught me that though life will not always be pretty and happy, it is important to LOVE life through even the most sad and hardest of times.
Every last one of these lessons are timeless. They can be applied in any relationship or even in the modern day workplace (you better believe Anne Shirley would fearlessly eat that last doughnut sitting all alone on the conference room table). She knows the value of hard-work and has a passion for never giving up. She fights for her beliefs, friends, family and the dreamer in all of us. If I could spend a day, a hour even, with anyone fictional or real, it would without a second thought be her. I can just imagine how infectious her energy would be, and that is something I know I would take with me for the rest of my life.
So here's to living life with her energy from now on. Here's to never giving up hope for a life filled with beauty. Here's to living without being preachy. Here's to growing in fearlessness and character. Here's to living the Anne Shirley way.