College

My Sophomore Year of College Taught Me

So much y’all, so much. I cannot believe I’m halfway done with my undergraduate degree. It honestly doesn’t feel, mostly because I still feel like a child in many ways. But here I am. I survived finals week (barely), I moved out of my apartment, had to make two trips because I just love to torture myself, and I have to unpack everything still. My room is in a state of chaos, whatever, I’ll handle it eventually, (probably in three weeks). Anyways, I am so freaking happy that I’m done with classes and I have the entire summer to relax work my butt off and try to save some money. Although, it will probably take me a full month before my stress levels go back to a moderate level, or until I won’t feel like I have homework waiting on me. But let me share a few things I’ve learned this school year.

My sophomore year of college taught me to never take 18 credit hours a semester again. Never. Nope. 0 out of 10 would not recommend.

My sophomore year of college taught me vulnerability. I touched briefly on this in my “Why I’m Single” post, but really I learned how to be intimate with myself. Sometimes I think that admitting my flaws to myself can be one of the most challenging things. Being honest and vulnerable with myself became a reoccurring theme in my life this school year. While reflecting, I keep seeing this pattern that God has woven into my life. Time and time again, God brought my own vulnerability to the surface and I experienced it in such intimate ways. God used assigned reading to highlight my vulnerability, counseling, and a coincidental talk with a fellow student in the art gallery, who also experienced vulnerability this year. Through my vulnerability, I was able to know myself in a different way. I realized that I couldn’t do life alone, it’s not what we’re designed for. This year has truly taught me the importance of needing others and finding strength in them.

My sophomore year of college taught me that going to a small university has plenty of academic opportunities. Yes, there are a lot of annoying aspects to a smaller school, but my psychology profs honestly make me so happy I’m here. All of them know me on a first-name basis and they all care about the things I have to say. They give me great feedback on my papers and one of my psych profs is even my mentor. They’ll be able to write me amazing letters of recommendation for grad school and they make my psych program enjoyable.

My sophomore year of college taught me that I need to stop getting close to people who are leaving. What I mean is that the people I got closest too, are transferring to a different school. It’s super annoying, but I think knowing that they were leaving soon allowed room for more intimate and honest moments of friendships to occur. You know how that saying goes, “life is short and stuff”, so when faced with the knowledge of them leaving, we were all able to connect quickly and genuinely.

My sophomore year of college taught me to not let my secrets hold me hostage. In my latest post “I Am Living” I addressed one of my biggest secrets, though I suppose it’s not really a secret anymore, considering it’s out on the internet. But really, because I never talked about my sexual assault, I let it hold this power over me. I harbored it and didn’t seek the help I needed at the time. Partly due to the fact that the majority of us are ignorant when it comes to instances of rape (it’s not just NO means NO anymore) and partly due to the fact that even I didn’t know what exactly happened to me. Because I didn’t talk about it, I turned myself into a victim, I thought that everyone would judge me, and then leave me because of my sexual assault. I was entirely wrong. My counselor truly helped me see that. I never had anyone tell me that I was a strong survivor. When she told me that, I couldn’t help but cry, even know thinking back on that session, I tear up. Along with telling her, I opened up to those closest to me. I would consider myself an emotionally stable person, I don’t talk about the tough stuff because I don’t feel like being vulnerable. But as I said above, vulnerability was my lesson this year. Since telling more and more people about my sexual assault, I feel nothing but an overwhelming amount of love and support. My friends and family have expressed that so much of my behavior makes sense now. They understand me and love me unconditionally. I truly thank God for those He has blessed me with.

My sophomore year of college taught me that there is nothing wrong with needing anxiety medication. I have a chemical imbalance, I need that shit balanced out to prevent myself from turning into a giant ball of anxiety. I am not weak. I’m fighting. I didn’t just jump straight into medication, I truly exhausted all other options before I decided to try medication. With continued counseling I am reaping the benefits.

My sophomore year of college taught me that EVERYONE should see a counselor. Honestly y’all, it’s so soothing and I feel SO relieved after walking out of my session.

My sophomore year of college taught me happiness.

My sophomore year of college taught me that my fashion truly does reflect who I am. Last year, I wore black clothes and dark lips, nearly every day. I gave off a “don’t talk to me vibe” because my anxiety made me terrified. I didn’t want anyone to approach me so I made myself unapproachable. This year, I am happy dressing however I want, without worrying about giving off a certain vibe. As long as I feel comfortable, I don’t bother sticking to a certain style.

My sophomore year of college taught me that damn I am so grateful for my friends. I love them so so much. In my honesty and vulnerability, I was able to get so much closer to who I spend my time with. They mean the world to me.

My sophomore year of college taught me that our generation is the future, we have power in today’s society. We’re not lazy, self-absorbed kids, we are intelligent and have things to say. I think we are a pretty kick ass generation.

My sophomore year of college taught me that I still freaking hate biology. Thank goodness it’s the only science course I have to take for my major.

My sophomore year of college taught me that my friend Stephen and I are literally the same person. From alien theories to the video games we grew  up playing. We’re gonna be cryogenically frozen because we both don’t want to get old. To any cryobiologists out there, I hope that y’all have a way to successfully unfreeze us in the distant future.

My sophomore year of college taught me to wake up every morning wanting to make each day a good day.

My sophomore year of college taught me that Reddit is a deep dark place and I’m pretty much addicted.

My sophomore year of college taught me that my mental disorders don’t give me an excuse to treat my loved ones like shit. I couldn’t understand why I was so mean to the people I loved until I started taking my anxiety medication. Anxiety is selfish, it clouds my mind, making it hard to truly see things from others perspective. I couldn’t handle any other responsibility besides school because everything else became too heavy. Interpersonal relationships were another burden that caused so much anxiety. In any social situation, including my close friends, I had this idea in my mind, that if I said the wrong thing, they would never want to hang out with me again. Not just that but they would also hate me. I would zone out mid conversation because I was analyzing every single thing that I said in hopes to make sure I didn’t say the wrong thing. I would snap at my loved ones because I was frustrated that they couldn’t understand what it felt like to be inside of my mind. They didn’t think that making a joke could be a life or death situation. I didn’t give them a chance and anxiety kept me from trying to help them understand. After being on my medication, I realized that this was entirely out of my control, though it’s not fixed completely, it is a lot better.

My sophomore year of college taught me that a libran philosophy major is probably the best person to have a deep conversation with.

My sophomore year of college taught me that I consume way too much coffee. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

My sophomore year of college taught me that being happy takes work. It’s not something that comes easily to me. But when I get out of bed each morning, I have the power to decide to be happy. I can let my mental disorders crush me or I can fight back. We don’t have the power to control what happens to us, but we do have the power to choose our reaction. I am choosing to be happy.

My sophomore year of college taught me so much and that I still have so much to learn, but as long as I trust myself and God, everything will be okay (or relatively so).

Previous College posts: My first semester of college taught me, My freshman year of college taught me, My third semester of college taught me.

 

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