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34 Actually Great Things That Happened In 2016

Just some nice things, big and small, that happened to people in this hell year.

We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us something great that happened to them in 2016. Here are some of the best responses.

1. Not waiting any longer to take the plunge.

"After months of talking about getting hitched, I married the love of my life the day after the 2016 presidential election. We decided that there was no time like the present to commit to each other for life. We decided at about 6:45 in the morning to tie the knot, and at 3:30 one of our friends who is ordained married us in a park around the corner from our house. 2016 was a crazy year, but it will forever be the year I married my best friend."

Submitted by khove47

2. Finding help.

"Well, I finally got help for my depression this year and a lot has changed for me and I have a much better life for it. Also – the old me would have felt helpless in face of a President Douche Trash, but the new me is defiant and ready to fight."

Submitted by Charlie-Rey Humphrey, Facebook

3. Enjoying a first relationship.

"Got my first boyfriend this year! I was in a sweaty bright orange shirt and stained jeans and my bra had decided to let the wires run free. I spotted his Forbidden Planet bag, he spotted me. Celebrated two months on Saturday. :3"

Submitted by Charlotte Badiali, Facebook

4. Completing a family.


"I gave birth to my what is going to be my last child and only daughter. (I have two sons and can’t have any more children due to health reasons. This also resulted in me having her early. Even though she was early, she had no health issues and I took her home after only six days.) So glad I got a girl this time. I love my boys just as much and now I feel like my family is complete."

Submitted by werewolfrevy

5. Getting a puppy.

"On Mother’s Day, my sidekick was born! He makes me feel like an MVP every single day of this rookie year in pet parenting."

Submitted by gsdlover

6. The mother who gets to see her daughter's milestones.

"My mom was diagnosed with a rare form of anemia called PNH in 2005. This disease completely destroyed her liver. On February 8, 2016, she received a life-saving 5-organ transplant (her veins were too damaged to only transplant her liver) which included a stomach, liver, pancreas, small intestine, and a portion of her large intestine. I also got engaged to the love of my life in 2016. Because of the generosity of her donor, who lost her life so that my mom could live, my mom and I are able to shop for my wedding dress, prepare for my graduation with my master's degree, and celebrate every day we can because we know that those days are not promised. <3"

Submitted by Amber Grovogel, Facebook

7. Going on an adventure.

"I was accepted into a wonderful field study program that goes out to make geology field studies more accessible for those with physical disabilities. We went to Arizona and I hiked 3 miles at the Grand Canyon. Something that I never thought I would be able to do again after my accident. Next year we are getting to spend time in Ireland doing research! It was such a life-changing experience to get accepted into this year!"

Submitted by leahzm

8. This small victory.


"My goldfish turned 3 years old!"

Submitted by schmidtkayla

9. Finally getting to graduate.

"After nearly 10 years of setbacks and financial issues, I finally got to walk across a graduation stage with a diploma for a college. Sure, it's only the associate's level, but it was hard fought for, and the others will come. Plus I earned my RHIT credential, which was a really tough exam to take and brought me panic attacks and all sorts of anxiety issues up to the day I sat for it. Getting that pretty license certificate a few weeks ago (it took a while to get the office license mailed to me) made me tear up a little, it was so wonderful."

Submitted by Kati Pettit, Facebook

10. Finishing an actual marathon.

"I finished the New York City Marathon. Two years ago I could barely run a mile but on November 6 I ran 26.2. My mom was at the finish line and I cried."

Submitted by Rhonda Hicks, Facebook

11. Making a new friend.

"I made a friendship so strong that it’ll last forever. I feel like she is my long-lost sister and this year we have spent so much time together. Even when we were across the country for the summer, we talked every day and it felt amazing in the midst of awful."

Submitted by victorias4ce47a58f

12. Finding a caring person.


"I got married to the most wonderful man. We were friends for years and after a close friend of mine died he took care of me. We fell in love quickly and both felt like we had wasted enough time not being together so we decided to get married. He became my husband in April after less than a year of dating and I still can’t believe how lucky I am to have him in my life. I was recently diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, which has taken such a toll on my health, physically and mentally, but he has been by my side looking after me and caring for me without a second thought. He was the light of my 2016, and will be in every other year."

Submitted by missohno

13. Starting what sounds like the best business ever.

"I started my own chocolates, jams, and cookies business!"

Submitted by Aishwarya Lahiri Khanna, Facebook

14. Finally getting with a ~crush~.

"My crush of a year and a half asked me out. I'm now a month into my first relationship."

Submitted by Alla Enway, Facebook

15. A wedding that was a long time coming.


"I was lucky enough to marry my childhood friend!!"

Submitted by lfarrell88

16. The greatest blessing of 2016.

"Simone Biles."

Submitted by Libby Froeber, Facebook

17. Starting a family.

"My daughter's adoption was finalized! <3 She's stuck with me now – sorry, kid."

Submitted by Kim Wright, Facebook

18. Meeting some heroes.


"This year, I finally started going to comic cons, and it was the best decision I ever made. I got to meet two of my favorite actors ever: David Tennant and Michael J. Fox (twice!). Being able to travel to Madison, Philadelphia, and Chicago to meet these amazing people, as well as meeting congoers and seeing really cool stuff was what I’ll remember being the best part of this year. Every time I get sad about what’s happening in the world, I look at these pictures and smile like a dummy because that was the happiest I’d ever been."

Submitted by saxxyelric

19. Getting a boyfriend (finally).

"Came out to my brother and got my first boyfriend! About damn time, too."

Submitted by Cam Williams, Facebook

20. Three excellent milestones.

"Graduated from grad school with my master's, got a real-person job with an actual office, and Fern the tennis ball hoarder entered my life."

Submitted by thisiskatiegill

21. Getting an incredible gift.

"My father worked three full days overtime at his fire station, so his entire next paycheck could get me a ticket to see Hamilton for my 19th birthday. It was a complete surprise and I will never be able to repay him for the gift he gave me."

Submitted by tangledlover

22. Working hard to have the best year ever.

"I suffered from severe social anxiety and depression for a few years, and had to leave school freshman year. This September, the start of my junior year, I went back to school, made dozens of new good friends, discovered a passion for animation, came out as trans, and rediscovered my love for life and the world. I have so much new energy for life. In 2014, I didn’t think I would be alive by now, but now, 2016 has shaped up to be the best year of my life so far, even with all the shit that’s happening around the world."

Submitted by killbots

23. Being cheesy.

"My lovely (now) fiancé proposed to me on Valentine’s Day. We are cheesy af <3."

Submitted by Cameron

24. Meeting an idol.

"After seeing Samira Wiley perform in Antigone, I saw her walk past me with her co-stars but was too nervous to try very hard at saying hello. About 45 seconds later, she came jogging back over to me, said she saw that it looked like I wanted to say hi. She hugged me, squeezed my knee, complimented my phone case, and took a selfie with me. She’s a big personal hero of mine, and it was incredible."

Submitted by julz98

25. Having some cool parents.

"I came out of the closet. My parents were super understanding. By that I mean they did not care. I told my Filipina mom first and she said, “Yes, and I’m Asian.” I was like, "We?" and she clarified, “I thought we were saying s—t we’ve always known.” When I told my dad, after two minutes he starts telling me about my celebrity crushes when I was really little. Apparently my first crush was on a young Joan Jett when I was 5."

Submitted by fangirl767

26. Crying from happiness.

"I started school at UC Berkeley. I’ve struggled in college and I once dropped out because of my poor mental health and then spent three years at community college and took it slowly and then I applied to school, and I ended up being accepted to the number one public university in the world. I’m literally crying because it’s been so hard and to get rewarded feels like the biggest payoff ever. Lol."

Submitted by andrewr461d1f6a7

27. Giving a gift to yourself.


"I got myself this 'I Beat Breast Cancer' present."

Submitted by polinak2

28. Having a feisty baby.

"I became a mom in January. I think of the shit storm that 2016 was and then I look at my beautiful little girl and think about all the amazing things I’ll help her do to overcome everything that’s out there. At nearly 11 months old she is so feisty and confident, and I wouldn’t want her any other way."

Submitted by bricolebolt

29. Starting over.

"On a whim, I moved to a new city where I didn’t know anyone. That was January 1. Since then I have met a group of people that have become a second family, gone on some insane adventures, and fell in love with an amazing guy. In general, 2016 was awful, but it might go down as the best year of my life."

Submitted by laurenk47780015e

30. Seeing this.


"I found out I was finally pregnant after 6 years of marriage and 13 years together. We had been trying for a really long time. :D"

Submitted by kendaleh

31. Getting more from your Airbnb than you bargained for.

"I had a fairy-tale romance where I stepped off a bus to meet my Airbnb host in Viñales, Cuba, only to discover that love at first sight is completely possible. We will be married New Year's Eve."

Submitted by laureny413e8f07c

32. This important skill.

"I mastered the difficult art of contouring."

Submitted by hannahz1234567

33. Finally getting around to some magical reading.

"I read the Harry Potter books for the first time. I’m 38 years old and I love them!"

Submitted by lanamarie

34. Having someone new to tell about this crazy year...

"All the weird shit that’s happened this year aside, I had a son and I am definitely looking forward to telling tales of 2016 to him later."

Submitted by dameffy

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