I was listening to Thomas Rhett’s new album today and his song “Life Changes” really struck me. I was having a dance party alone in my room and started sobbing, something I’ve been doing quite a bit in my last year on this Earth.
I was always a rule follower. I did my homework, got straight A’s (for the most part), and did everything that was expected of me. I’ve never told anyone this but I’ve been thinking about the real reasons I left San Diego. I tell everyone I left because I changed my major. I really don’t believe that to be true. I tell everyone that San Diego has a crappy education program and I’m here because this one is better. I don’t know anything about San Diego’s education program if I’m being honest. It’s just easier.
I think the real reason I left San Diego was that I didn’t have a lot of friends there. Quality over quantity, I know, but I didn’t have any. There were people I talked to daily, because of class or we lived in the same building, but I didn’t have anyone I really connected with. I tried joining a sorority, I tried going places and joining clubs but I really just couldn’t make any friends. In November, my aunt and my friend Marisa, both ganged up on me to try and convince me to go to ASU. I couldn’t say no and I applied, got in, and was going to major in chemical engineering because that’s what my family thought was best.
It took me about 19 years to be a rule breaker, to go against the current, to say no to something. It changed my life. Taking a year off and changing my major to education was one of the most terrifying and exhilarating things I have ever done in my life.
That year-long break has made me a hard worker, made me break out of my shell, given me beautiful and kind friends, allowed me to see the world in all of its glory, and so much more.
I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting today. This past month was one of a terrifying months of my entire life. Starting college is a life-changing experience and I loved my freshman year at San Diego State (it’s San Diego.. What’s there to hate) but starting college a second time… that was terrifying.
Most people never thought that I would return to school after taking a year off, and I started to believe them. Maybe I would end up living in my parents’ basement for the rest of my life and work at McDonald’s until I could no longer move. Taking time off of school was the first thing I ever did that I decided 100% by myself… what if it backfired?
When I moved into my dorm last month, I was so terrified that I cried in the bathroom on the 5th floor of Baker (our union) for hours. I was terrified because I didn’t know anyone and thought that I’d made a mistake on Ohio. What if I chose to leave Ohio, and transfer again? I was terrified that I would never find my place.
However, I believe that after 5 weeks, I’m slowly starting to find my place. I joined an amazing club called CHAARG. These 203 other women are supportive, kind, strong (inside and out), and have made me feel welcome in a school of 30,000 others. I love my classes, professors, and my peers. This time off (and a new major) has made me fall in love with learning. In San Diego, I slacked off a lot, I won’t lie, and I thought I was just lazy. In all reality, I was not interested in my classes. This year, I am almost always on top of assignments, I study at night, and have only watched one movie on Netflix. I love working on school assignments, completing readings, and I am just enjoying learning. That year gave me a second wind and a newfound love for school that had been hiding for the past few years.
I am now confident that I have nothing to worry about. I now know that I was right to take a year off because, without it, I never would have come to OU, I never would have changed my major, joined CHAARG, or fallen in love with learning.
Life certainly changes, and if you play your cards right, it will change in all the best ways. I promise