Today I embark on a new journey and begin my senior year of college. It seems like just yesterday I was a shy, clueless, awkward freshman that didn’t know how lame it actually was to wear your keys on your lanyard around your neck.I also had little to no social skills whatsoever coming from a ridiculously small private school. Nonetheless, I was bound and determined to become a nurse anesthetist as I intended to my whole life. This, my friends, was my first mistake in my college career.
About halfway through my first semester, I realized that I was not on the path that I was supposed to be on; my grades were slipping, I was constantly exhausted, I lost all motivation, and- in all this chaos- I managed to lose myself. You see, I’ve always been a planner, type-A personality, and OCD, so when I came to the realization that I wasn’t where I was supposed to be, I lost my zest for life; I just wasn’t the same person I was before. Because of this, my mental health and relationship at the time began to deteriorate. I broke up with my boyfriend of two years and just wanted to be alone, I knew I had to get better and turned to working out and going out in order to make myself happy again. After countless meetings with my adviser, and more aptitude tests than any human being should ever take, I found myself pursuing a career in communication and public relations- an umbrella category for all of my passions- and something I had always wanted to pursue, but did not think was actually possible.
My sophomore year, I took a huge leap of faith and tried out for the competitive dance team on campus. By some crazy miracle, I made the team despite not dancing for five years. I also did something I swore I never would do and went through sorority formal recruitment. You can probably imagine my surprise when I fell in love with Alpha Delta Pi and accepted a bid from them on Bid Day. Thanks to both of these organizations, I became more confident and started to break out of my introverted shell. That fall, I unexpectedly met a boy who turned out to be the man of my dreams even though I swore I was going to focus on my career for the rest of my life. I became more social, and things started to turn around. I was genuinely happy once again.
My junior year was a growing experience for my maturity as I conquered the challenges and lessons life threw my way. My classes were extremely difficult, I took an executive board position in my sorority, my boyfriend informed me that he decided to serve in the military, I was in a terrible car accident, and my anxiety was at an all new height. I promised myself that I would not revert back to the person I was freshman year, and with the help of my family, friends, and boyfriend, I began to set small-scale goals for myself (this was a huge step due to my type-A personality). I achieved my goal of making the Dean’s List, and I figured out how to prioritize my time because it really is so precious.
If you would have told me four years ago that I would be sitting where I am today, I would have laughed in your face and told you that you were absolutely crazy. However, as I sit here reflecting on the past three years of my college career, I wouldn’t change a thing. College is a time to not only learn what is necessary in the classroom, but to make mistakes and learn from life experience. I am so lucky to have stumbled so clumsily to where I am now, standing with more poise and confidence than I ever could have imagined. Bring it on, senior year, I’m ready for ya!