To Change and Self-Growth...to 2018!

Raising My Glass To 2018

Here's to a much needed, much appreciated change.

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This year has been one for the books. I can sit and think about it all, but, while writing this, I can't quite find the words to say. The past 12 months have been months of change and growth in ways I couldn't have thought possible. Of course, this year was big for everyone my age: we turned 18, graduated high school, and some of us went off of college. But, let me share with you some of the details of why I am toasting to 2018.

This year did not start out in my favor. For the first couple months I found myself surrounded by a toxic period of time in which I was stuck going through the motions of my life, but I didn't feel truly there. A blessing in disguise was thrown my way, however, when times changed and people left. I didn't see it at the time, but, as it often happens, when it seemed that things I cared about were falling apart, I was actually allowed space to change everything for the better.

Shortly after, Easter followed, and I turned 18. I've always thought that it was a fun fact that I was born on April Fool's Day. This year it was nice that a more considerably important day fell on Easter. A neater fun fact, I suppose.

The day after my birthday, I spent in Disney World's Animal Kingdom, and my 18-year-old butt put on a Simba tank top and wore my hair in pigtails. Between my outfit, the pigtails, and my brace-filled, ear-to-ear smile, I probably looked like a 12-year-old; but, I will tell you I was the happiest 12-year-old there. My favorite Disney movie has always been "The Lion King", and I got to see their Festival of the Lion King. I adored every minute of it.

I know peers that went to the beach and had a crazy spring break that you really only hear stories about, but I couldn't be happier spending mine with my family in Orlando because I got to reconnect with myself. For the first time in a long time I didn't care what I looked like or what people could be thinking of me, I was remembering how much I loved being childish.

At the end of April I went to my senior prom. I went dateless, with friends, in a dress that I felt amazing in. We all went to a steak dinner in town, danced at prom, and then spent time at your friendly neighborhood Waffle House. We ended the night with a midnight showing of "Infinity War." No one could tear us down or ruin that night.

May 29th, we graduated. There isn't much else to say other than that. Four years of our life came to a conclusion in two hours and it was unbelievable, indescribable.

Over the summer, I worked two jobs. That was a lot of my summer, aside from a week I spent with my four closest friends at our senior trip in Myrtle Beach. We drove down, stayed in a house, cooked our own food when we weren't going out, went to the beach, and adventured around the city. A week well spent with all of us before we all went away to school. I think this week was my favorite in this entire year.

Then it came time to move into a school that I was never certain I wanted to go to. It was a hard transition for me, I'll admit that. I didn't really know what I wanted to do so I didn't understand why I was coming to WVU, yet, it isn't far from my hometown and they have some of the best programs in the country. But, I came, moved in, and, to my pleasant surprise, I found a place. I found old friends and new friends, I've gone on adventures, and I've found new inspiration on possible paths for my future. I found a new home.

In this past year I have struggled with letting go of people I thought would be in my life much longer. I have struggled with feeling like I was watching parts of my world fall apart. But, I am saying cheers for this year because for the first time in a very long time, this year is not ending with me wondering when something is going to change. This may have been a year of pain but it was also a year of growth. I am rid of toxic influences, I reconnected with parts of myself that I never realized had been lost, and I have grown into a happy, confident young adult.

Cheers to 2018! And, thank you for not being another year of involuntary motions.

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The Truth About Young Marriage

Different doesn't mean wrong.
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When I was a kid, I had an exact picture in my mind of what my life was going to look like. I was definitely not the kind of girl who would get married young, before the age of 25, at least.

And let me tell you, I was just as judgmental as that sentence sounds.

I could not wrap my head around people making life-long commitments before they even had an established life. It’s not my fault that I thought this way, because the majority opinion about young marriage in today’s society is not a supportive one. Over the years, it has become the norm to put off marriage until you have an education and an established career. Basically, this means you put off marriage until you learn how to be an adult, instead of using marriage as a foundation to launch into adulthood.

When young couples get married, people will assume that you are having a baby, and they will say that you’re throwing your life away — it’s inevitable.

It’s safe to say that my perspective changed once I signed my marriage certificate at the age of 18. Although marriage is not always easy and getting married at such a young age definitely sets you up for some extra challenges, there is something to be said about entering into marriage and adulthood at the same time.

SEE ALSO: Finding A Husband In College

Getting married young does not mean giving up your dreams. It means having someone dream your dreams with you. When you get lost along the way, and your dreams and goals seem out of reach, it’s having someone there to point you in the right direction and show you the way back. Despite what people are going to tell you, it definitely doesn’t mean that you are going to miss out on all the experiences life has to offer. It simply means that you get to share all of these great adventures with the person you love most in the world.

And trust me, there is nothing better than that. It doesn’t mean that you are already grown up, it means that you have someone to grow with.

You have someone to stick with you through anything from college classes and changing bodies to negative bank account balances.

You have someone to sit on your used furniture with and talk about what you want to do and who you want to be someday.

Then, when someday comes, you get to look back on all of that and realize what a blessing it is to watch someone grow. Even after just one year of marriage, I look back and I am incredibly proud of my husband. I’m proud of the person he has become, and I’m proud of what we have accomplished together. I can’t wait to see what the rest of our lives have in store for us.

“You can drive at 16, go to war at 18, drink at 21, and retire at 65. So who can say what age you have to be to find your one true love?" — One Tree Hill
Cover Image Credit: Sara Donnelli Photography

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Summer And Jobs

Working summers doesn't have to be tedious.

Aasayed
Aasayed
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Like many other college students, I was ready for summer but was kinda bummed that I had to work. Its not that I didn't like where I was working, I actually was really lucky to be working in a hospital environment but I just hated being alone all summer from 9-5. I've had this job for a few years now and a few other paid interns came and went but I never really connected with any of them. This year is different though.

I got really lucky to have another intern work with me that was very similar to me. The tasks we got were always simple but they were made to be more fun because I got to do them while talking with someone else. Now I actually enjoy and look forward to going to work.

The key to finding a good job is finding one that you enjoy doing and one that will help you gain knowledge that will help you out with future career plans. Working with friends also make tasks enjoyable! I would be careful with working with your friend however because if your job needs you to be serious and focused, being around your best friends may distract you from that.

Another thing that definitely makes summer jobs more enjoyable are taking breaks! It is your summer vacation after all! I'm not saying don't take a day off just to sit around, but if you make plans with family and friends, take a Friday off and enjoy the warm weather and good company! Employers understand that us college students and on break and have lives, they are usually very lenient with days off!

If you have to do a summer job to make money to live off of or pay for college, the best thing to do is look at the big picture. If you don't enjoy your job but can't afford to quit, remember that the money if going to help you out a lot. Also, this job is probably only for the summer right? So it's not permanent my friend! Get through these annoying few weeks and you will be back at college, taking steps for a bigger and brighter future.

Summer jobs are tough, I know, but make the most of it! And don't forget to enjoy it whenever you can!!!

Aasayed
Aasayed

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