An Oath To Senior Year

An Oath To Senior Year

A personal commitment to making this last year of college the most memorable it can be.

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Every senior in college that I talk to always seems to share the same experience of getting struck with the realization that college life is nearing a close when the beginning of the last year starts. In my case, it happened just yesterday as I was walking back to my dorm in preparation for my classes which started today.

I arrived at my room confused because at first, I could not really place a feeling to the emotion I was having; an emotion which I did not even identify first to actually be some type of premature nostalgia. I somewhat remembered experiencing this upon the realization that high school was coming to a close years back, but this one was more intense because, without the promise of grad school in the wind, I know that my life will soon change drastically.

I will no longer be around my favorite people for extended periods of time just chatting about our lives, our interests, what we're going to do this weekend, or even what we're going to do the next minute. I know that my current status as a part-time employee and full-time student will become a full-time employee.

I'm not necessarily terrified of what's to come, but I am nervous about the uncertainty of it all because we all have expectations we want to be met and may not reach. Regardless of the various mixed emotions, I felt like I needed to make a brief oath to myself, and any of my fellow seniors reading this can feel free to relate.

This senior year I hope to unravel into the best version of myself that I can be. I hope to grow personally in all aspects of my life and will appreciate the small and grand moments. All the times I'll be staying up late or not sleeping at all to finish assignments that I procrastinated are to reach the end goal in sight. Every time we struggle and stress about it, it's because we care about the end result. I will make sure to check in on my friends and make sure they're surviving the year just like I am.

My classes will not get the better of me. I will pass every one of them and still manage to have free time to myself among work and school. I will attend more campus events and befriend as many new people as I can so that I can say that I always had someone to talk to or attempted to broaden my horizons.

I'll try to keep active and not remain just within my dorm but also go to the gym or do some physical activities to relieve stress and tension. I'll make sure to be responsible at parties but also have the necessary amount of fun that I should be getting. For more personal activities, I will make sure that my laundry isn't procrastinated and that I actually fold it when it's done so that it doesn't get all wrinkled in the process. I'll try to get a head start on internships or job offers for post-graduation.

On a more important scale and the crucial topic to mention: I will make sure that no matter what happens throughout this senior year, that I remain optimistic. I will not let one bad experience outweigh the many amazing ones to be had and can guarantee that this senior year will be the year to remember.

The years of education have amounted to this climactic year of adventures and it will stamp itself as an unforgettable time in my life. I will get to graduation, I will succeed, and I will find joy in this school year and the post-college years to come.

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
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“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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I'm Not Feelin' 22, But I'll Make The Most Of It

The reality of becoming another year older and the stress that it may bring.

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Birthdays are all about being the center of attention, - birthday wishes from friends and family, and celebrating another milestone in your life. People go out of their way to buy party favors, set up parties, and buy gifts just to make someone feel special on their birthday. However, some people dread their special day because of anxiety and depression. This past weekend was my 22ndbirthday, and although I'm usually excited for my birthday, this was the birthday I had been dreading.

Birthdays are inevitable. Once you reach past the age of 21, everything seems to go downhill, or at least I think so. Once I realized I was going to be 22 last Sunday, I realized the new responsibilities and norms that come with turning this age. I am a Junior at the University of Arizona, should be a senior, and most of my friends are younger than me. With most of my friends graduating this year at the age of 22, I can't help but feel bad that I will be graduating at the age of 23. After being at a large university for three years, I have felt "behind" because of my age and academic standing. Being the oldest of my friends brings a sense of anxiety out in me and pressure that I should be graduated by now.

Another issue I have with birthdays at this age is the expectation of certain milestones that I have not accomplished yet. With social media being such a large part of our society today, seeing so many different people on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter posting pictures of what they are doing every second of the day, it's hard not to feel bad if you are not up to par with others lives. Some people are having babies, while others are going to medical school, where do I fit in?

Although birthdays bring some sense of negativity to me, I think that they should be celebrated in a positive light. My best friend, Colleen, knew I was feeling down about my birthday and wanted to help me feel better about turning the big 2-2. She bought balloons, silly string, and letter banners just to decorate our apartment to make me feel excited about the day. She bought me the most unique presents that only a best friend would know I would have wanted. At the end of the day, we went to my favorite restaurant and with the help of Colleen, my day had turned around.

While you may catch the birthday blues at some point in your lifetime, there are ways to change your attitude on the day. You may hear from someone from the past wishing you a happy birthday that can make you smile, or receive a gift from a family or friend that you had your eye on in the store and they knew you had to have it. Don't compare yourself to others when it comes to birthday plans, live the day how you would like and spend it with the people that matter most to you.

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