As I started college, I knew that my world was about to be turned upside down, and I knew there was no way to prepare for it. Throughout this semester, I kept bracing myself for some drastic change where I would suddenly feel older, smarter, wiser. Sometimes, however, you can’t just sit around and wait for something to change you – you have to be the one to change yourself. I have recently learned the power of personal reflection, and although I’m still on this journey of self-discovery, I have learned more about myself this semester than I have in my entire life. The biggest realization being that I’ve always thought of myself as quite an independent and confident person, but it took being stripped of everything that I know to figure out that that just might not be the case.
It’s pretty safe to say that my life has never felt more unstable. If simply going to college wasn’t earth-shattering enough, my mom moved houses shortly after I left home, my high school boyfriend and I broke up, my mom got engaged, my brother and his girlfriend broke up, and my baby sister started 7th grade! Everything I knew to be true just dissolved, and it seemed like no one cared. And although not all of this change was bad, per se, it still was change, and change is scary. However, I was not about to let all of the instability ruin my first semester, so I kept myself busy every waking moment to avoid having to face how I was truly feeling. Right of the bat, I made such amazing friends, and I was not about to let my negative emotions get in the way of all the fun we were having. Even though, in my eyes, I had just about the best start to first semester imaginable, it wasn’t healthy for me to ignore those feelings.
As the semester started to wind down, the more alone time I had to sit and be with my thoughts. It wasn’t until then that I realized how empty I felt. Everything in my life that had made me feel secure was gone – at least temporarily. For the first time in my life, I truly was alone. All of my life, I’ve prided myself on being independent, when, in reality, that could not be further from the truth. In high school, I was able to be independent with the support of my family, my friends, my boyfriend, my school, my job… Without all of this, I felt insecure and extremely codependent. I started to believe horrible things about myself and thinking that life didn’t actually matter. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little depressed, so I knew I had to do something to pull myself out of this dark place. Despite the fact that I was learning that not everything I’ve always thought about myself is true, I knew this person I was becoming was not me.
I know that this will not be the last time I feel as though my life is changing too fast for me to handle or the last time I feel insecure, but I have come to the conclusion that in order to feel most fulfilled in every situation,
I need to be my own home.
Everything in life is so transient, but I’m me for as long as I’m on earth. The sooner I start loving, believing in, and trusting myself, the better. There is always going to be someone who is smarter, prettier, cooler, more interesting, so it’s time to start appreciating what makes us unique, as cliché as that sounds. I have made a promise to myself to not rely on anyone or anything to feel stable and secure. I’m still figuring out how to accomplish that, but I’m trying. I have to give myself props for that. People come and go, seasons change, houses are temporary, but you, you are forever – whatever that means.