Dear high school seniors,
I know the types of things you have on your plate right now: college promotional emails, applications, resumes, deadlines, reference letters, acceptance letters, registration dates, course schedules, admissions counselors, scholarships, tuition payments, FAFSA, picking a roommate, deciding a major, scheduling tours, and trying to keep your head above water. Looking back on it, this might have been one of the most stressful times in my life, but I'm here to tell you we have all been there, and we have all survived.
I remember the struggles: questioning if I was going to make the right decision, avoiding the questions of "where are you going to school" and "what's your major going to be," staying afloat while having other teenage stuff to worry about, and still trying to remain a happy-go-lucky person. It took multiple breakdowns to finally decide what I was going to do and where I was going to go, but one thing I wish I heard more of was that whatever you pick and wherever you end up, everything will work out in the end.
If I could talk to myself a year ago, I would tell myself that everything will work out how it is supposed to. I would tell that stressed out girl that there are other people just as anxious as she is and Welcome Week is just as awkward for everyone else. I would assure her that she will find new friends whom share her same values, beliefs and ambitions. I would remind her that she is going to a successful college that will help her further her learnings and help her find a future career path. I would talk about the different clubs and activities she will be exposed to, which she wasn't exposed to in her old life. I would preach to her that college will bring about so many new experiences (both good and bad) that she will learn endless lessons from. Overall, I would dial in on the fact that she only lives her senior year of high school once and to stop stressing over it, because a year from now, she will look back and be thankful she made the decisions she did. She will be happy, independent, successful, and so lucky to be living the life she is- just like you will be.
Wherever you pick and whatever you decide to do, there will constantly be people, experiences and opportunities that show you that you are meant to be where you are. These types of thing happen to me daily, and they never fail to make me realize I made the right decision.
So enjoy the rest of your senior year. Don't stress over what could be or will be, but enjoy the time you have. You've only got so much time left before you are actually going to be living the future life you are stressing about now. Put those worries away, grab your friends, and enjoy the rest of your year.
From someone who has been there, lived through it, and is still living to tell about it, I have one thing to say you you: your freshman year of college will be stressful, exciting, and have so many emotions, but it will be one of the best years of your life. So instead of dreading it, look forward to it, because you've got a lot of exciting things ahead of you.
A college freshman.