As December winds down, it is time for everyone to talk about how they want to be happier and healthier in the new year. The new year represents a fresh start, a reset button that magically appears when the ball drops. Poof! Just like that, we are given the opportunity to be thinner, more active, happier, paint more, love more, fear less, stop smoking, and start volunteering.

Good Riddance Day was held in Times Square on December 28. The day encouraged people to come together and smash or shred something from 2014 to which they want to say goodbye. It could have been a letter from a former lover, a note representing a larger entity that cannot be physically purged, or a physical object. People brought anything from which people wanted distance in 2015.

This made me realize that in order to live better in the new year, and be more likely to stick to the resolutions, there needs to be a separation from the things that have brought about pain. It is too burdensome for one to take on the idea of starting afresh in 2015 when you carry what prevented healthier, happier, more loving lifestyles that so many resolved to have in 2014.

This morning, I asked The Man to spend the next 48 hours thinking about what from 2014 that he would like to say good riddance, and one or more things that he hopes to accomplish in 2015. On New Year’s Eve, we are going to share our reflections and our plans.

2014 brought about a lot of fear for me. I had cancer a few years ago and have to still go through periodic check ups to make sure that the “free and clear” message from 2011 still stands. Each phial of blood, each sonogram, and each call from my doctor brings about anxiety and fear.

Just because I have been sick does not mean that I will be sick again. It also doesn’t mean that if I am sick again, I am facing a new and more threatening demon. It would be unpleasant, but my family, friends, boyfriend, and I all know we can handle this. The fear is useless.

Standing shoulder-to-shoulder with so many women, I fear getting hurt. My relationships have sometimes worked themselves into the most spectacular of disasters. From the guy who was a chronic cheater and messed with my mind like a bad movie, to the man who expected me to move in with him after five months and start talking babies– I feel as though men have put me through the mill!

I need to realize that The Man isn’t the men from my past. He isn’t even the same guy that I first met more than a year-and-a-half ago. It has been a solid amount of time that we have spent side-by-side, and I need to stop being scared and see the bond that is ever-present.

When you are in your late 20s, there is the bitterness of money– there is enough to get by, but when it comes to budgeting for emergencies and the future, it’s never enough. While no easy way out exists, there are plenty of options to make ends meet– that is, the ends that I envision for myself. I need to stop worrying and start working harder.

Over the course that will lead me to spending New Year’s Eve with The Man I love, I will contemplate how I can let go of these parts of 2014 to make more room in my heart and in my life for happiness, love, and growth in 2015.