The Lessons I Learned Rereading My Journal From Freshman Year Of High School
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The Lessons I Learned Rereading My Journal From Freshman Year Of High School

I definitely cringed a lot reading some of the entries.

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The Lessons I Learned Rereading My Journal From Freshman Year Of High School
Cara Hoekstra

1. Life gets better.

Freshman Cara was very insecure and uncertain of basically everything. She worried about the future all the time and always wondered what other people thought of her. But life today is way better than I could have ever imagined as a freshman in high school. During my freshman year, I was concerned with how I looked to other people. I sought out opportunities and pursued plans that made me look good.

But today I am at a school that was never really part of my plan, and I am pursuing a career path that is far from anything I had previously looked at. But I feel more at peace and secure with myself than at any time. I did not need to go to an Ivy League school to feel important or wanted. God’s plan was so much greater than my own.

2. I probably need to apologize to some people.

If I was as dramatic in real life as I was in my journal, then I probably need to apologize to some people. I honestly laughed at myself for how silly and dramatic I sounded in 2014. If you had to deal with me during those years and I was dramatic, I apologize. Some of the most trivial things consumed me, and I overthought absolutely everything. It is pretty embarrassing. I would like to think that I am better today, but I’ll leave that up to you to decide.

3. There is hope for everyone, even the most annoying freshman.

I honestly feel bad for anyone that had to deal with me as a freshman. As mentioned above, I was very dramatic and probably very annoying as a result. If freshman Cara could recover from her naive and annoying personality of 2014, then there is hope for everyone.

I know that most freshmen may seem hopelessly annoying, but if given the chance, they can turn into fun and responsible people. They just have to be pushed beyond their comfort zone and shown that they are either not all what they think they are, or they are enough as they are and don’t need to overcompensate by being annoyingly talkative.

4. I still struggle with some of the same things.

Back in my freshman year of high school, I was already way too concerned about guys and dating. I had a huge crush (I probably need to apologize to him) and could not see how God could work out the situation. I felt lonely and worried about the future. And that is still true today. I trust God with my future educational and career goals, I trust God take care of me physically, and I trust God to lead me where I need to be.

But I still struggle with trusting God in relationships. Sometimes I feel lonely or like I am missing out on something because I am the last of my friends to not have a relationship. Sometimes I am convinced that being single is the cross I have to bear, and other times I just think God is testing me for a time. Although I am slightly less dramatic in the romance department, it is still something that I have a hard time dealing with.

5. Time heals.

In my freshman year, I was still hurting from the death of my Opa, who had passed away two and a half years before. The pain of his death is evident in what I wrote. It hurt that he was not there anymore, and I wished I could tell him all that was going on in my life. But looking back, I now see that as much as that pain hurt then, today that pain has mostly turned to joy. Of course I still miss him and wish he was there for important moments in my life. But now, I can look back at the joyful times I did have with him without feeling so much pain. It took time to heal from the pain of losing one of the most important people in my life.

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