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2013 is almost over and I can honestly say that it was probably the best year of my life. I don't think I have ever enjoyed a year as much as I have this one. Although it sounds depressing and pessimistic, I often end my years thinking, "Well, next year will be much better!" This year, though, I'm ending it with a smile on my face and feeling fully satisfied with the way the year went. 

This year, I did experienced so many new things and tried really hard not to let myself get in the way of new opportunities or memories. I tend to be overly cautious and say no to a lot of things, but this year I struggled and fought against the nos and tried to hold on to the yeses.

Before this year, I had only been to one "concert," and it wasn't really a concert. (Last year I waited in line for 12 hours to see One Direction at a mini-concert that consisted of 4 songs; BUT IT WAS WORTH IT!) I opened up 2013 by seeing Foy Vance, Rizzle Kicks, and Ed Sheeran in concert. I can't even begin to describe how amazing that was. Ed Sheeran is among my favorite artists and being able to see him live was such a joy and privilege. Two months later, I got to see one of my favorite bands: Maroon 5! Adam Levine is perfect live and in person! Maroon 5 asked Owl City and Neon Trees to open for them. Together, the three gave a wonderful show; it was truly a memorable experience! Later, in October, I attended Austin City Limits. Austin City Limits itself was probably my favorite memory of the year. I had never been to a music festival and it genuinely is like nothing I have ever experienced before. I was able to see so many of the artists I spend all my time listening to and enjoying. Listening to them live and hearing my favorite songs come to life is such a wonderful and amazing feeling. I was lucky to see Jake Bugg, Vampire Weekend (if only for four songs), Arctic Monkeys, Walk the Moon, Kings of Leon, Grouplove, Toro y Moi, and Phoenix--all in one weekend! Choosing to attend ACL was definitely a wise choice! I recommend everyone attend at least one music festival in their life!

In 2013, I crossed off something that has been on every bucket list I've ever written and rewritten: I attended a Mexico Men's National Team football game. Having a Mexican father, I grew up watching football (soccer) every single weekend. Although I can't play it, I love that sport so much. I can watch game after game after game and not get tired. I don't even have to be rooting for a particular team to enjoy the game. Because my dad was born and raised in Mexico, it is only natural that "his" team is the Mexican team; I was quick to follow his footsteps. I love that team like no other. Win or lose (mostly lose), I will always support that team. I have always wanted to watch them play live and I finally got to experience that this year. My family and I attended the Gold Cup semifinals in Dallas in July. Mexico lost, but I had so much fun at that game. I seriously can't wait to go to another football game soon! 

Speaking of football, I finally went to an Aggie football game this year! After three fall semesters of not attending any games, as a senior, I got around to buying a sports pass. I went to my very first football game and I fell in love. Very few things can compare to the passion and love Aggies feel for our team. Being there at the games and feeling like part of a huge family as we all cheer for our team is such an awesome feeling. I was addicted after the first game! I returned to my beautiful Kyle Field week after week to watch my Aggies win and lose. I’m only sad that I didn’t start going to the games sooner!

I tried so many new things this year, too. I finally tried coffee (and hated it)! I went to the movies by myself and discovered that it’s so much fun and something I enjoy doing. I drove from College Station to El Paso (~660 miles) all by myself. I’m absolutely terrified and petrified of driving, so that was a big deal to me. I learned how to jumpstart a car. I got retweeted by Kevin Jonas of the no-longer-together Jonas Brothers. I used to be obsessed with them and I was super excited (and kind of embarrassed) to get my tweet retweeted by one of them!  I took a picture with an elephant and was part of A&M’s Senior Elephant Walk. I also watched so many good movies and read great books this year.

Not only was this year fun, it was full of successes, too. In April, I received my Aggie Ring. A&M and its students make a very big deal of getting a school ring. My ring shows that I have accomplished so much and have worked incredibly hard to have the privilege of receiving an Aggie Ring. Later in the year, I was given a promotion at work. I really hadn’t been expecting that promotion and I was surprised and pleased to be chosen for the position of assistant coordinator. This last semester, after 3.5 years of school, I graduated magna cum laude from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English. That is my biggest accomplishment to date and I’m so excited that it was a finishing cherry on top of an already wonderful year.

If this year was so amazing, I can’t even imagine what is in store for next year. I truly can’t wait!

What were some of the highlights of your year?

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Comment by Jasmine Villa on December 23, 2013 at 10:39pm

Congratulations on graduating magna cum laude! I am super proud of you! 

Comment by Adriana Candelaria on December 23, 2013 at 3:30pm

Aww congratulations on graduating magna cum laude! That's an amazing accomplishment that many fight & cry over lol, but I know it naturally comes to you! Which means it's for you and no one can take it away. I have been hearing about the One Direction mini-concert since I met you! That's how you know it's REAL lol. I'm really happy to see you're ending the year with a smile. I think I'm ending mine with a smile too because I'm alive & healthy, my family is good & college is almost over. Also, one of my favorite memories from 2013 is driving with you to EP. I had missed you so much! I hope our 2014 brings us many more joys :)


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