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So, because of my penchant for procrastination, and my crazy schedule the last few days, I’m typing this post right now, merely hours to the deadline. I really could lay blame at the Lord of the Blue Highland’s feet for not pushing me enough to deliver on time, but I’ll be the bigger man and take all the blame. (Efe, don’t ever say I never did anything for you. Ehen)

Now to the business at hand. First off, allow me to say it feels great to be back on these streets for this review. I decided not to be part of this yearly project last year because I was going through a lot at the time and I wanted my sharing to be a personal one. As such, the only post I put up was one on my blog.
To talk about how 2014 has been for me, I need to go to the last month of 2013. See, December started in the worst possible way for me. Basically, on the 1st of December, I received a phone call while I was at a group meeting for a team project for one of my classes informing me that my father had just passed on a few moments before. To say I was shocked would be putting things very mildly. But I had to take it all in and get back to the meeting because things needed to be done. It wasn’t easy having such a thing happen two weeks to exams. But God was faithful, and I found peace very quickly through talking with Him, and talking with my dad (basically myself). This year has shown me that I am truly my father’s son, and that he did an amazing job raising all of us his kids.

To put it simply, 2014 has been a year of growth for me. This entire grad school journey has been one of discovery, enlightenment and expanded frontiers. It’s also been one of hardship and pain and rejection. I have suffered emotional and physical hardships that I totally didn’t see coming and didn’t know I could take in my stride. Imagine my first winter being the worst winter in 40 years and the snowiest winter on record. Let’s not even talk about what my love life has shown me this year. Chai! And then the rejections from all the scholarships and internships I applied to? LOOOOL. Nah, I wouldn’t be lying if I said this year was the Year of Curves.

But, it hasn’t all been bad. Like I said before, it’s been a year of expanded frontiers and discovering things in myself I would never have believed. For example, I actually started AND FINISHED a series on my blog (can y’all believe that?). On the professional side, I got the chance to work with a team on a research proposal that stretched my skill set and further strengthened my resolve to get an MBA. Like no jokes, if anyone had told me last year, that by this time this year I would have applied to the MBA program twice (after an initial curve), I would have laughed it off. But alas, that’s what I’ve done, and not because of a simple “oh that would be nice”, but because I am convinced that I want one and I know what I want to do with it.

I would say the brightest point for me this year has been my dancing. Starting with my dance group in the African Students Association, our performance opened culture shows here in University of Michigan, and in Wayne State University in Detroit. Then in May I picked up Latin dancing – Salsa, Merengue, and Bachata – and I’m already on the Bachata performance team in my dance organization Dance Revolution. Since this summer, on average I dance 4 times a week, and basically it’s the only workout I need (because that fitfam lifestyle is not for me to be very honest.) But more than the dance itself, it’s the sense of community. Which brings me to my next high point.

This year has been a year of new families. All my life, when I move somewhere new, I’ve never felt like I would lack with regards to having a support system of friends and friends that become family, but even I have to say I never would have thought I would become this grounded in the Ann Arbor community this quickly. Between my SNRE family, my Dance Revolution family, my ASA family, and most importantly, my IMPACT/HMCC (church) family, I have come to LOVE Ann Arbor a great deal. I have become a Michigan Wolverine through and through, and it is because of all the amazing people I have been blessed with. Whether it’s meeting them randomly in a club when I go dancing; or at a school related event; or at a church meeting; my life has been made A LOT better because of the quality of people I have found here in this wonderful city. Heck, through my job with the international center this past summer, I got invited to have Thanksgiving dinner with the president of the university and his family (Okay, I wasn’t the only one, there were 12 other students from different school units. But still, my swag is much and shii)

The final point in my review for 2014 is my relationship with God. I have gone down some very dark roads this year, but one thing I never lost sight of is the fact that I know God loves me and provides for me, and the fact that He is my source. He’s been with me EVERY step of the way, sometimes stupefying me with his mercy and grace, even when I have been incredibly unfaithful. It’s been exceedingly humbling, but it is because of this that I can look forward to 2015 and know that as much as 2014 has been a pretty good year overall, it’ll be nothing compared to what I’ll experience next year.

So, I bid you all an amazing end of the year, and wish you even more awesome 2015.

PS: Oh yeah! I almost forgot, the “saddest” part of this year was the end of the Naruto manga. See, if you’re not an otaku, or you don’t follow manga or anime or series generally you can’t feel my pain. But see y’all, I started following that manga in 2005! Literally saw me all through my undergrad and ish! I nearly cried when I saw the last page. But as a real g, I had to stay strong.

Yeah, I’m done for real now. Sayonara.

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I’m glad you were able to write at all. Thank you for making your quiet return to the year review series. Please we miss your blog posts. Fix it please.

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