Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Getting out of the rut

Well, it's been a whirlwind these past few days... I survived my first on-call weekend (somehow), and have been hanging out with some really awesome friends lately. Last year, it felt like I hung out with the same crowd all the time, but now I'm realizing who my real friends are. I couldn't be happier. It's the little things like that make me really glad that I'm doing so. I've purged a lot (between 30 and 35) of people on Facebook, cut contact with the negative people in my life, and have begun to focus on what it is that makes me happy.

I love helping people, don't get me wrong. Sometimes, though, I think that I expected too much of people. I may lose contact with some people, but those who I really care about, I want them to know it. So many people have changed my life, and they might not even realize it.

Before college, most of high school seemed like a rut. Get up, get ready, go to school, sit through classes, eat lunch, sit through more classes, and then go home. For 2 years, I was involved in Journalism, but senior year I quit that. Admittedly, senior year was pretty good, but I really didn't feel like it was any different.

Flash-forward to freshman year of college. I was a graphic design major. I had the freedom to do what I wanted, where I wanted, etc. I didn't have to go to every class (and I sure as hell know I didn't), I could stay up late and get up late, and there wasn't anybody to stop me... Except the exhaustion and complete disregard for what I was doing, of course. But then, I realized, I hate this major. Graphic design is not for me. I couldn't handle the pressure of 16 and 18 credit course loads. And homework, tests, quizzes, projects, art projects, essays... the list goes on.

Finally, towards the end of my freshman year, I decided I needed to do a complete turn-around. Granted, by this point it was April, and I really couldn't do anything about the turn-around then. However, I dropped my Graphic Design major, and decided that Industrial Organizational Psychology was my calling. (Eventually, I also added a Women's Studies minor, and also one in Management).

After working the summer at Chuck E. Cheese's (an adventure in and of itself), I started my sophomore year with a new major, a new set of classes, and a point to prove: this year is going to be different. I had a work study, and only 15 credits... Perfect!

I had Intro to Anthropology, Descriptive Statistics, Interviewing Skills, Intro to Earth Science, and Principles of Management. 2 major classes, 1 minor class, and 2 general education courses. Little did I know what was going to happen that first semester: I met one of my now best friends, met some other incredible people, and got really involved. A complete 360 of the previous school year.

I only missed one or two classes TOTAL that entire semester. My GPA, which had been at a lowly 2.6 (average of freshman year), boosted to a 3.13. I was ecstatic. I had gotten involved, I learned so much about myself, and I was proud of what I'd accomplished. My second semester was pretty awesome, too. Again, I got above a 3.0 GPA, took some upper level classes (2 300-levels for the second semester in a row) and did really well in them, and decided to apply to be a Community Assistant.

If someone had told me that I was going to have this job now as a Community Assistant, I probably would have scoffed. Now, I can't even imagine doing anything else, even despite what I've dealt with thus far. It has made me realize who I am, and taught me that while there's no way I can be the best, I'm going to sure as hell try.

So far, my junior year has been filled with love, hate, resentment, happiness, and so many more emotions. I've been back at school for 1 month and 13 days. I've only gone home once. But in this short amount of time, I've grown and realized who I am, what some of my goals for the future are, etc. I really don't know where I'm going still (and frankly, the future post-graduation terrifies me), but I have a better idea of what I want to do, and I've got the support system of some awesome friends, professors, and others to help me get there.

The song "Welcome to Wherever You Are," by Bon Jovi, perfectly sums up how I feel about this whole life journey (or at least that which I've come to realize in college so far):

Welcome to wherever you are
This is your life, you made it this far
Welcome, you gotta believe
That right here, right now
You're exactly where you're supposed to be
Welcome to wherever you are

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