I Hate To Say It But, College Has Hit Me Like A Train

I Hate To Say It But, College Has Hit Me Like A Train

I never thought it'd be like this but, I'm trying to get through it and do the best I can.
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I was one of those people who came to college thinking, “I’ll be fine. I’ve been preparing for this and I’ll be alright.”

Well, boy was I wrong.

The first two weeks were a breeze. My classes were easy, I wasn’t having a lot of homework and I was staying on top of whatever assignments I had. And then tests started happening, and I kept getting assigned more and more homework.

I hate to say it, but college has definitely hit me. And it has hit me hard. And if you’re wondering just how hard, I cried today whilst studying because I dropped a Cheeto. If that doesn’t scream, “I’m stressed to the max,’’ I don’t know what will. Nothing I did to prepare to come to college, didn’t prepare me for how much work it was really going to be.

And I’m not the only one in this boat, definitely not. I can go on Snapchat and see people’s stories saying, “Send help,” or something to that extent. We’re all struggling. This is not easy and just because someone else breezed through their freshman year of college, doesn’t mean everybody else will. My roommates and I sit in our common room, all doing homework together, and more than likely someone is going to scream or yell out in frustration. We’re overwhelmed with homework and tests and a lot of us are physically and mentally drained.

This is the week before fall break, which means midterms.

It has been long nights of studying and pulling my hair in frustration. And a lot of, “I definitely just took an L on that midterm,” and pretending like it’s fine. But it’s not because no matter how much I study, I still struggled on every midterm I have taken already. And I can say that some of it has been my fault because unfortunately I don’t have very good study habits.

I know it won’t be this hard the rest of the years, at least I hope not. It’s just especially hard since it’s freshman year and I’m still trying to adjust to this new lifestyle. Thankfully, I’m not in this alone because I have been blessed with a group of friends that are here for me. We’re all struggling, but we’re going to get through it.

Although, for this semester anyways, I’m gracefully taking these low blows until I finally learn my lesson on how to study and manage my time.

Cover Image Credit: Deviant Art

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An Open Letter to the Person Who Still Uses the "R Word"

Your negative associations are slowly poisoning the true meaning of an incredibly beautiful, exclusive word.
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What do you mean you didn't “mean it like that?" You said it.

People don't say things just for the hell of it. It has one definition. Merriam-Webster defines it as, "To be less advanced in mental, physical or social development than is usual for one's age."

So, when you were “retarded drunk" this past weekend, as you claim, were you diagnosed with a physical or mental disability?

When you called your friend “retarded," did you realize that you were actually falsely labeling them as handicapped?

Don't correct yourself with words like “stupid," “dumb," or “ignorant." when I call you out. Sharpen your vocabulary a little more and broaden your horizons, because I promise you that if people with disabilities could banish that word forever, they would.

Especially when people associate it with drunks, bad decisions, idiotic statements, their enemies and other meaningless issues. Oh trust me, they are way more than that.

I'm not quite sure if you have had your eyes opened as to what a disabled person is capable of, but let me go ahead and lay it out there for you. My best friend has Down Syndrome, and when I tell people that their initial reaction is, “Oh that is so nice of you! You are so selfless to hang out with her."

Well, thanks for the compliment, but she is a person. A living, breathing, normal girl who has feelings, friends, thousands of abilities, knowledge, and compassion out the wazoo.

She listens better than anyone I know, she gets more excited to see me than anyone I know, and she works harder at her hobbies, school, work, and sports than anyone I know. She attends a private school, is a member of the swim team, has won multiple events in the Special Olympics, is in the school choir, and could quite possibly be the most popular girl at her school!

So yes, I would love to take your compliment, but please realize that most people who are labeled as “disabled" are actually more “able" than normal people. I hang out with her because she is one of the people who has so effortlessly taught me simplicity, gratitude, strength, faith, passion, love, genuine happiness and so much more.

Speaking for the people who cannot defend themselves: choose a new word.

The trend has gone out of style, just like smoking cigarettes or not wearing your seat belt. It is poisonous, it is ignorant, and it is low class.

As I explained above, most people with disabilities are actually more capable than a normal human because of their advantageous ways of making peoples' days and unknowingly changing lives. Hang out with a handicapped person, even if it is just for a day. I can one hundred percent guarantee you will bite your tongue next time you go to use the term out of context.

Hopefully you at least think of my friend, who in my book is a hero, a champion and an overcomer. Don't use the “R Word". You are way too good for that. Stand up and correct someone today.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlin Murray

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She's The Girl About To Speak Up, And She'll Make The World A Better Place

She is a girl with opinions that differ from the people around her, a girl with an open-mind stuck in a closed-minded society.

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She is not a feminist killjoy. She is not some radical liberal. She is a girl with opinions that differ from the people around her, a girl with an open-mind stuck in a closed-minded society.

Most importantly, she is a girl who speaks her mind.

To begin, my input on our next living location was never taken into consideration since I was only ten and my dad thought it would be a great idea to move back to Tennessee. Now, this does not sound so bad. However, I had been living in Spain for the past four years and never experienced the amount of bigotry I did once I was living in Tennessee. I ended up not being apart of the so-called "popular" crowd since I was not one of the girls who would zip her lips and look pretty to impress boys.

I never realized how cruel people could be until they turned my outspokenness into something laughable by making a joke out of everything I said. Such as a fellow peer calling me anonymously on the phone and stating, "So, I heard you like killing babies," and then proceeded to make cruel jokes about my opinion on abortion.

On that note, to the girls that speak their mind,

the best way to handle people who do not feel the need to give you common courtesy is to focus on your goals, to remember why you continue to speak your mind, and to forgive the people. Throughout life, you may experience people chasing you with Trump signs or people outcasting you because being outspoken is viewed as a weakness. However, you were made to be difficult to forget and not easy for the mind to follow so you can make a difference in life.

It is rare to be made to be difficult to forget and not easy for the mind to follow because many people are unaware of how much power they have behind the works they speak and the actions they take. Each word you speak affects someone differently and can cause a ripple effect that leads to more listeners and more people that will help make a difference.

So, girls keep speaking your mind.

People are going to tell you that you talk too much, that any claims you make are rubbish because you are a woman and women do not know what they are talking about. Do not listen to them. Do not give react to them. Instead, continue to provide them with the facts that back up your claim. You do need to provide them with common courtesy, despite the radical idea that women have no idea what they are talking about because you never know how their words will affect your thoughts.

While you should oppose the outright expression of bigotry, you also need to consider your actions. For instance, I was chased with a Trump yard sign around "Celebrate Munford" because of the mere fact that I expressed how I disliked President Trump declared approach to the border crisis, tax cuts, and women's rights. Now, instead of giving the person chasing me with the sign a big reaction like they wanted, I ignored them, and it stopped. If I had given them a big reaction, my opinions would have been invalidated and turned into something laughable. Since I did not react, I refuted his claims because his actions showed that his true intentions were to shame me, rather than wanting to make a difference.

Silence can be much more powerful depending on how you use it.

To the girls that speak their mind, I want you to remember a quote by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich:

Well-behaved women seldom make history.

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