The Advice You'll Never Be Given

Moving to a new country this past year has brought me many new challenges and opportunities; some I was forewarned about and some, not so much. As soon as people in my hometown heard the news about my upcoming departure, everyone was quick to offer me advice about what to expect, how to do laundry, and what kind of friends I should make. However, looking back on this year, I realized that no one told me what I really needed to hear.

Advice came in handy for things like bringing extra storage containers for my dorm room or working on assignments as soon as they are given because something else will inevitably come up. People such as my soccer and fitness coaches helped prepare me for university soccer and the physical aspect of daily training. I also benefited from my parents' encouragement to put myself out there and join a campus organization as a way to meet new people.

After a few weeks in my new home, I thought I had it all figured out; I met amazing people with similar interests, my roommates and I actually got along, and I enjoyed my classes. Things were looking up, and I was looking forward to the next three years in this incredible atmosphere.

Then it happened. I sustained an injury that ended my season and made me question why I was 1,000 miles away from everything I had ever known. I’ll save you the sob story of the months between my injury, surgery, and my return home for the summer, which left me unsure of what I had gained from the last year’s experiences. Workouts became discouraging instead of motivating, as they had been reduced from squatting 200 pounds to lifting my own leg five times; however, I was determined to not give up on my dreams because of how I felt in that moment. I began to share my struggle with several friends, and although I’m thankful for their positivity, all of the "you-can-do-its” in the world weren’t going to miraculously change what had become the most challenging year of my life.

Then, on a particularly average day, I talked to a friend of mine who was struggling with her career choice, unsure of what she should do as she had just completed her first year of full-time teaching. She explained to me that through the entire past year she had felt exhausted and emotionally drained as something she thought would be so promising turned out to make her dread getting up each morning. She gave me just a small glimpse of the inner turmoil she had faced because the last year had not met her expectations and she wasn’t sure of her purpose anymore.

Slowly, I began to relate her situation to my own; we both tried something new for the first time, leaving what we had always known, and we failed to meet our own expectations. As I was selfishly thinking about my own predicament, she suddenly looked at me and smiled. She simply said, “all of this was going on and after my first week off, I realized that it’s not about me. It’s not about me knowing why I’m in the place I’m in or understanding what my purpose is in each particular moment. It doesn’t matter if I feel happy or if I exceed my expectations.” Though stunned at how a person can have that kind of inner peace while being unhappy, I perfectly understood exactly what she meant. She went on, “If I know I am where I’m supposed to be and I’m fulfilling my purpose for that particular time, my feelings are irrelevant because I know there is a plan for these experiences later in my life.”

So to all the new students, or those of you trying something new, it might not turn out how you want. You might not enjoy every minute of it. You may experience days when you feel like giving up. My advice to you is to take heart! You are here on purpose, for a purpose. It may not always be clear, but there is a reason why you’re doing what you’re doing. It's okay to not be okay, for now.

Enjoy these quotations:

"A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor."

"Tough times don't last; tough people do."

"Let your dreams be bigger than your fears."

"If it doesn't challenge you, it doesn't change you."

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

119 People Reveal How The Pandemic Has Affected Their Love Lives, And Honestly... Relatable

"I haven't been able to get out of the 'talking phase' with anyone."

The reality is, there's no part of life the pandemic hasn't affected. Whether it's your work life, your home life, your social life, or your love life, coronavirus (COVID-19) is wreaking havoc on just about everything — not to mention people's health.

When it comes to romance, in particular, people are all handling things differently and there's no "right way" of making it through, regardless of your relationship status (single, taken, married, divorced, you name it). So, some of Swoon's creators sought out to hear from various individuals on how exactly their love lives have been affected since quarantine began.

Keep Reading... Show less

Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B just dropped the hottest summer single yet. It's called "WAP" and we're going to get into all the intoxicating lyrics.

This song empowers females and their sexuality. These women put the ridiculous music industry female beef to bed, and I mean tucked away in a coma.

Keep Reading... Show less

How To Write Down The Holy Grail Recipe Everyone Begs You To Make

Because everyone has a signature cocktail, cake, or pasta they bring to every potluck.


From back when I used to bring my mom's classic white chocolate chip cookies to preschool on my birthday to now stirring up my signature tequila cocktails at every friends' barbecue, I've always had a couple of standby recipes in my culinary rotation.

Keep Reading... Show less

Meet My Cat: Cheshire, The Stray Turned House Cat Who Lives in Michigan

I never considered myself a cat person, but Chess immediately stole my heart.

Madelyn Darbonne

In 2016, a stray cat gave birth to a litter of three grey kittens on my aunt and uncle's property. I had never considered myself to be much of a cat person, but these furballs immediately stole my heart. I got to watch them grow up until they were old enough to leave their mother's side.

Keep Reading... Show less

How To Binge-Watch A TV Show —And Then Write A Review About It

Writing your favorite and least favorite things about a show could not be more fun.

Photo by Mollie Sivaram on Unsplash

Looking for a new show to binge? Stop scrolling through your options and listen.

Sometimes a good show doesn't come down to the genre or the actors involved, it comes down to the fact that it is simply a GOOD show. If any of these things sound appealing to you, you should definitely watch.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

11 Reasons Why Getting A Cat Is The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Mental Health

Cats may mess up your puzzles but they'll always love you unconditionally — as long as you have some catnip, that is.

Scout Guarino

Alright, everyone, it's time to stop spreading the rumor that all cats are mean, aloof, and hate everyone. Like dogs, each cat has its own personality and tendencies. Some like a lot of attention, some like less — each person has to find the right cat for them. As for me, my cats Bienfu and Reptar have seen me at my worst, but they've also helped pull me out of it. They're a constant in my life and they give me the strength to get through the day in spite of my depression, and there's even scientific evidence to support it!

Keep Reading... Show less

I've been bleaching my hair since I was in seventh grade. Yes, you read that correctly, seventh grade. That's nearly 10 years of maintaining a very light shade of blonde that too-often brings about dryness and brittle strands.

Keep Reading... Show less

Chances are if you're here, you're probably interested in writing an open letter. Yay! We're excited to have you.

Of course, not all open letters are created equal. In fact, there's a recipe to writing one for Odyssey that'll get featured on one of our many verticals. When it comes to Swoon specifically (for those new around here, that's our dating and relationships vertical), we receive dozens of open letters each month, many of which are all very similar.

Keep Reading... Show less

With a new phone comes great responsibility: Do not break it! And the best way to do that is with a case. However, picking a case can be a challenge. No need to fret, I am here to help break down some of the best cases for the new iPhone SE 2020. Honestly, I think it's going to be impossible to choose!

Keep Reading... Show less

To some who have been out of the dating world for a while, it can be hard to get back into the swing of things after being single for some time. So, I asked 26 people what they think is important to know before looking for love again, here's what they had to say.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments