Lessons from 2022: From the Pathetic to the Great

Addressing my fears and need for approval

Dani Mini
5 min readDec 31, 2022
woman at beach in front of sunset
Image taken by my spouse Cesar R. and used with his permission

I had a hard time deciding how to structure this list. My first thought was to start with the great and end with the pathetic, to then conclude with how I would do better or different in 2023. But the pathetic is always more relatable, especially if, like me, you’re keenly aware of how full of it we humans tend to be, every last one of us convinced we’re at the center of the universe and that the universe cares about us specifically. We aren’t. It doesn’t.

I’ve opted to begin with the pathetic, then, because I’m a typical self-centered human who finds pondering the pathetic transformative. It helps me know myself and be a version of myself I like more.

The Pathetic

My need for approval is concerning.

Have you ever found yourself checking your social media of choice multiple times a day, far more than you know is healthy? Of course you haven't! You’re mature and don’t need that kind of affirmation based on images showing a curated segment of your life. Moreover, you’re not even likely to be on any social media seeing as you have no time for that nonsense.

Turns out I’m not like you. I’m immature and foolish. I found myself shamefully…



Dani Mini

Dani is a special education advocate and writer of anything worth pondering, from autism to Botox.