Freshman reflections

It seems like just a couple of days ago I was preparing to head to Orlando for my senior trip and to begin Summer 2015! And then somehow in just those short couple of days, I traveled halfway around the world, made new relationships, and cherished those closest to me in my final moments before I move off to college.

Summer 2015 was an unforgettable summer for me. I’m so blessed to have had the opportunities to travel the world this summer and to meet so many wonderful people. I’ll not forget that or take it for granted. Thank you, God, for blessing me.

Now, just two days before I move to Harding University to begin a new chapter in my book of life, I can’t help but wonder how college went from next year to next week so quickly.

I remember August 2014 and thinking that I had all the time in the world before college would get here. That’s how it seemed, at least. But now it’s two days away, and I’m trying to figure out where all that time went?

Did I spend that time wisely? Was I deliberate about my friendships and relationships with people? Did I leave an impact on my high school like I had hoped? Did I take advantage of all the opportunities thrown my way?

I can’t be sure of the answers to these questions. In fact, I’m sure that I wouldn’t like the answer to some of these questions.

But with just two days left before my life changes, I can’t let those unknown answers hold me back; rather, I’ll rely on another unknown – the unknown that is dorm life, college classes, and making new friends. I’ll rely on the unknown of college to catapult me forward as I write the exciting – and I’m sure sometimes not so pretty – pages in my story.

You would be hard pressed to find a college freshman that isn’t just a little bit scared at what is ahead. But you’d be equally as challenged to find a college freshman that isn’t bursting at the seams with excitement at what is ahead. And that’s where I find myself, right in between a little scared and whole bunch excited.

I have all of these fears and expectations for college. I’m scared that I’m going to fail a quiz or test and I expect everyone to want to be my friend. And honestly, my fear is probably going to become reality and my expectations probably aren’t going to work out as I hope.

With that in mind, I can only tell myself – and all the other college freshmen – this.

Life is scary and life is exciting. Yeah, we’ll probably fail a test. No, we’re probably not going to be friends with everyone. But we shouldn’t let that hold us back. There will be parts of this new story that we’ll want to erase or change in our book, but we can’t. It’s what makes our story and our story is what shapes us.

We have two options, we can step back into safety or we can step forward into growth. It’s our choice to make. It’s our story to write. And I can’t help but imagine how great my story – and all my classmates’ – story will be.

Here’s to our story, Class of 2019.

Until next time, keep smiling.

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