- Rang in the New Year in Osaka, Japan.
- Sold my Jeep, bought a Honda Civic.
- In order to drive to Redlands CA from Camp Pendleton CA 3x a week.
- Joined a LifeGroup with Shoreline Church.
- Started morning devotionals and grew in my spiritual relationship with God.
- Started a Blog.
- Matt and I survived a deployment together. (Our relationship became much stronger)
- Qualified for the California regionals with Team CDR.
- Finished 2nd for military athletes in the CrossFit Open.
- Place 4th at the California Regionals.
- Became a Battalion S4 Logistics Officer.
- Promoted a Sergeant to Staff Sergeant.
- Promoted a Gunnery Sergeant to a Master Sergeant.
- Served as the Officer In Charge of a Tactical Skills Package.
- Went to New Orleans as a guest speaker for the Delta Life Fitness’ Annual World Con.
- (Watched a fellow Marine transition out of the Marine Corps in order to run his dream business)
- Watched one of my best friends carry and give birth to her first child while her husband was deployed.
- Finished 7th place at the CrossFit Games with Team CDR.
- GOT ENGAGED TO THE LOVE OF MY LIFE!!!!
- Moved in with Elizabeth Koch and her amazing three children while her husband was deployed.
- Spoke at Lincoln Middle School to an after school program.
- Met Theresa Larson, Nicole Napoli, Lauren Schoener and so many other amazing people that have changed my life.
- Attended the Marine Corps Ball with my Grandfather.
- GOT BAPTIZED!
- Started my own business…. Valkyrie Performance
- Helped (5) women achieve their short term fitness goals and continuing to work towards long term.
- Hosted my first women’s leadership seminar at 5.11 Tactical.
- Became a 5.11 ambassador.
- Traveled to San Francisco for the first time.
- My LITTLE SISTER GOT ENGAGED.
While these are the highlights of my year, I want to genuinely express to everyone that with the highs came lots of lows. There were several days where I doubted myself. I doubted my abilities to be an effective leader and balance everything going on in my life. I doubted my abilities as an athlete and often times told myself that I should give up and wasn’t good enough to compete at the level I had dreamed of. I doubted my relationship with Matt and told myself that he was better off finding someone better, someone who wasn’t as messy and as crazy as me. I doubted whether or not I was worthy of God’s love and a relationship with him.
For the first time in my life, I lost a loved one. My grandmother passed away. Matt and I awoke to a phone call from my older sister who relayed the news. I immediately burst into uncontrollable tears and experienced my first panic attack. We almost lost my grandfather shortly after her passing. I witnessed him literally almost die from a broken heart. I saw the my whole family in a world of pain. Her funeral was beautiful and hundreds showed up. As the family walked in, and I counted the children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren I thanked God for bringing her to this earth and for the family she created. Returning to regional training in preparation for the Games was extremely difficult for me. I found myself randomly crying during training as I felt the pain of her being gone.
In November, I injured my shoulder from over use and under recovery. I was out for a month, and was forced to realign my game plan as an unexpected obstacle came my way. In this time I was able to shift my focus from what it had previously been and became thankful for the new journey God had taken me on.
2016 was a year that I will never forget. I’d say it was the best year of my life, because it’s the year I came to really know Christ, and the year that I let go of childhood/teenage hurt that I had been holding onto for over 10 years. In coming to know Christ, I really came to know myself, and I began to understand his purpose for me. In this life I will set goals, make plans and prepare for the future, but I finally understand what unconditional love is and because I have felt it, I am now capable of giving it to others.