Things Have Changed

Things Have Changed

A cathartic piece to find some peace because things are shaping up to be pretty odd
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“Things have changed for me, and that’s okay. I feel the same.” I sing the old Panic! at the Disco lyrics as I clean my room on a day off from school in the middle of the week. I have nothing to do, but I’m happy. I have nowhere to go, but I’m content. I have responsibilities lingering over me, but I breathe. I will never be the same again, but I’ll be okay.

It was really anti-climactic, the ending. One day, my routine was set in stone. It was the same for all four years of my high school life, and it had been similar since I was four years old. In one night, it was gone.

Softball has always been a part of my life. It has always been a part of me as a person. Whenever someone asked me to tell them about myself, the first words out of my mouth would be, without hesitation, “I’m a softball player." Then, last week, my team and I were eliminated from the state playoffs, and because I’m a senior, my high school softball career was over. I suppose I’m not much of a softball player anymore.

I don’t feel like I’m less of myself; in fact, I don’t feel different at all. My life has been altered in some way that I know is so huge, yet I don’t perceive this difference, at least not yet. Sure, tears have been shed, fond words exchanged, and a night or two has been left sleepless. Why don’t I feel different? What does it even mean to change?

According to my trusty friend Merriam Webster, change is “to become different, to make (someone or something) different, to become something else.” I’ve done these things. I was once a softball player; now, I am not.

I’ve just recently become an adult in the eyes of the law, but that doesn’t mean much to me. I’m in the middle of the college application process, but it has yet to hit me that I may be living on the other side of the country a year from now. New doors are opening and old doors are closing with each passing day. I have changed, but I don’t feel changed.

Maybe change isn’t a feeling. It’s an action, a shift. We always talk about how, on our birthdays, we don’t feel different, and maybe that’s because that number can’t really make us different at all. The passing day itself doesn’t affect us. What makes us different is our experience, where we are, who we decide to be.

So, no, I’m not a softball player anymore, and no, I don’t feel different. At the same time, I’m not the same as I once was. That’s the beauty of humanity- none of us ever are. With each passing day we progress, regress, mold ourselves into the person we are supposed to become. Sometimes these changes are small and wonderful, and other times they are monumental and disappointing.

No matter what each change may be with each passing day, we should strive to make it a change for the better, a difference that will make us into a better person. We may not feel different, but life isn’t lived for the feeling. It’s lived for those small changes, those small beauties, that make the world into a wonderful place.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

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4 Things I Wish High School Me Knew

Every day has a purpose.

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People don't give high school enough credit for having the ability to shape your life. It can build you or it can break you and often times there is no in between. As I enter into my senior year of college I have reflected a lot on my college career and how it really has been the best years of my life up to this point, but I know that without a doubt my life would have been so different in I would have known these things as a high schooler.

1. Your life is valuable

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. - Ephesians 2:4-7

2. You aren't defined by your singleness. 

Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you by the gazelles and by the does of the field: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires. - Song of Solomon 2:7

4. You aren't going to fit in

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. - Romans 12:2

4. Your clothes aren't going to fit forever, don't spend all of your money on them 

Then he said to them, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions." - Luke 12:15

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