The last year of my life has been a wonderful, blessed blur. I haven’t had the time to actually sit down and write something of substance, and I had initially abandoned this entire blog because I was feeling pretty bummed for a while. But as I reflect on the last year and approach the conclusion of my third year of college, I can’t help but gush over how much I’ve actually grown up and how excited I am to face the growing up I have left to do. In the last year I outgrew and abandoned dead-end and depressing relationships, pushed my boundaries, dabbled in corporate America, jumped out of my comfort zone by revealing more of my personality and identity to the world than I ever had before, took risks, leaps of faith, failed, tried again, succeeded, learned more about myself and my purpose in life, lived more than I ever thought I was capable of, got more piercings (much to the chagrin of my mother), stood up for myself, made connections, made friends, mentors, memories, good grades, bad grades, and sometimes I even had time to sleep.
In short, I can’t help but acknowledge that this has been one hell of a confidence-boosting hallmark of a ride for me—and it’s only the beginning. And deep down, when I’m completely honest with myself, I think a lot of this run-on sentence-induced happiness has to do with both coming out of my shell, and more importantly, my determined attempts to once and for all cultivate meaningful relationships and aspects of my life while rejecting and distancing myself from those I no longer wish to be a part of.
I started off the first two years of school feeling trapped inside of many things I simply was not, and when time came to break that mold I approached it with fear and hesitance because I first mistook those feelings for a fear of change. Later I realized it was really a fear of being myself—and being rejected for who I was. And when I finally understood the reality that I had to stumble, fall, and change who I was and what I was surrounded by, I learned that embracing the positive changes in my life and rolling with the risks and punches could lead me on an incredible journey where I learned who I really was and where I’m supposed to go.
When I look back on all of the foolish things I’ve done and the stupid manner in which I did them, I’m so proud to say I don’t look back on those moments with regret. Instead, I see them as an experience where I learned something that helped me become a better person. I have faith that my attitude and approach to life will continue to lead me to great things. Above all, I’ve learned to laugh at myself, live with myself, and love myself, no matter what others think. I’ve broken some hearts, bent some rules, and pushed my limits more than a few times. But I’d like to think I’m a stronger woman for it.
Don’t get me wrong—I still have a long way to go, and it hasn’t always been a smooth ride, but even in my weakest moments I still feel stronger and more empowered than I ever have before. For the last few years I wearily tiptoed into a whole slew of new experiences with reservation and self-doubt. Now, I’m ready to sink my teeth into anything that comes my way, and I’ll do it my best to take on anything and everything head-on with grace (as much grace as I’m capable of, anyway), enthusiasm, and an open mind.
I’m. So. Ready.
I wouldn’t have gotten here if it weren’t for the help of countless individuals. So if you have touched my life in any way, I thank you. Even if it was an awful experience and I hate you, thank you for teaching me something about life, the world, and myself. And if you’ve been a part of my life in an absolutely wonderful way, I love you and thank you from the bottom of my heart and ask that you continue on this journey with me.