Have you ever realized how you don’t actually notice when you’re changing? I mean, think about it. When have you ever stopped in the moment of what you’re doing and thought, “wow, this moment right here is changing and shaping who I am as a person”? We don’t do that. It’s not until we sit back months or maybe even years later that we grasp how different our lives and our personalities are. I really struggled with the concept of change at the end of last school year as I finished my freshman year of college. Because there I was, standing in an empty dorm, thinking about how drastically different the past nine months of my life had been, and yet I felt no different. I had been on a college campus, roomed with a stranger, met all of these new people… I had lived in a completely different state for almost a year and remembered talking with people and trying develop myself and still… Nothing. I found myself getting angry about this, for whatever reason, and maybe that was because I had stepped into college with this idea of this complete 360° change and I saw no results. Which, in retrospect, was a ridiculous thing to get mad about. I mean, college is four+ years and I had just finished my first. And I was getting mad because I didn’t get the results I wanted just yet. With three years ahead of me, it made no sense for me to get so upset. But I did. And I’m not saying all of this to say that in those nine months, I experienced no growth and that there was no change.
Looking back, I realize that at that time, I was still going through a lot of that change. I still am, in all honesty, but I’m kind of at the next step. In this past year of my life, I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve become more conscious of my actions and I’ve been able to learn to think more critically about how things affect me and why they make me feel the way I feel. I’ve become more open and more creative. I think I’m more confident – though that’s always a work in progress – and possibly even more extroverted. Which is weird for me. Because I’ve always been very introverted and very okay with being alone most of the time. Granted, I still like being alone. I like having time to myself where I can just watch Netflix and veg out. But I think being at Lee and living in Nora last year really taught me the importance of community and relationships and just how vital those are to living life. I think the people God put in my life, He put there to teach me to step out of my comfort zone. And He’s been continuing to teach me how to really go and put myself out there (as I discussed in my last post) and be brave.
It’s all about this mindset of change, I think. If you want to change but you never actually do anything, you’re going nowhere. But if you’re actively thinking “this is where I want to be” and you’re able to start the process, you’ll notice sooner or later that life isn’t the same as it once was. So now I’ve finished a big step in my life and I’ve been able to realize the change and work towards more growth. Which means there’s more. There’s always another step. Because let’s face it, nobody should stay at a standstill. And the more that’s coming might take me another year to realize, and it might be terrifying or uncomfortable at times, but that’s life. You keep going and you grow and you learn because when you look back on your life, you’re gonna want to remember the moments that changed you and the people who were around you. And you’re gonna want to be proud of who you were standing next to when everything shifted.
So now my life is totally different. And when I look back on high school, I don’t see the same person. It’s only been about a year, but I feel so far off from who I once was. Which only makes me wonder just who I’ll be when I graduate. But I won’t dwell on the future for too long. Because what matters is right now. I can look back on it later, there’s certainly plenty of time.