The Transitions That Transform You

The Transitions That Transform You

Nothing anyone says or does, can truly prepare you for life as a college student.

The transition from high school to college is one of the most important transformations in the life of a young adult. After spending a whole year as the “big guys” in school making memories with the people you’ve grown up with your whole life, you’re forced to leave everything behind, live with new people, and figure out your way through life on your own.

As senior year ends, all the talk about college begins and everyone tells you about how much fun you’ll have, all the great new things you’ll be able to do, and how college will be so much better than high school ever was.

However, no one can truly prepare you for what lies ahead, not your parents that have been there themselves, or even your older friends that have just recently went through the same transition.

No one can prepare you because everyone’s journey is completely different and custom fit to them. You will never know what to expect until it happens to you and you’re sitting in your dorm room thinking about how much your life has changed in just four short months.

In the matter of four months, you’re living with another person, most likely sharing a bathroom with people, walking around five miles a day to get across campus (if you’re at a big school), and trying to balance a life of partying with a life of constant studying. You go from having all the power in the hallways of your high school, to being at the bottom as a freshman again feeling the pressure to fit in and make new friends.

Looking back on my first semester as a college student, I faced challenges I could have never imagined, but also overcame them with the amazing new people I met, as well as with the best friends from my past, by my side. This has helped me become more of the woman I was made to be.

Although I made new friends and new connections with people, I also kept the old friends I needed close to me. This is the kind of balance that some people never figure out, thinking they must leave everyone from their past after high school. But, the truth is, certain people are meant to be in your life always, whether you’re at the same school or not, and if this kind of special bond exists then the distance between your school and theirs will never actually matter or affect your friendship. You know you’ll always have them no matter what.

Through my first semester, I was able to keep the past relationships I’ve formed that mean the most to me, as well as develop new relationships with the people I’m now surrounded with every day. Basically, I’ve learned that even though you transition to a life on your own, and you feel more independent than ever, the people you have in your life still do, and always will play an important role in your transition, and it’s up to you on who you want those people to be.

College is all about life transitions that transform you. Even after a life of eighteen years with your parents, and a life on your own sounds pretty good, don’t forget that you still need people on your side. Because although yes college is fun, and exciting, and free, it also gets tough when adulthood and responsibilities set in. It can get lonely, and that’s when you will realize you need your friends and family most.

No one can really prepare you for what lies ahead, because no one knows what the future holds. But this is your life now, and although there is still a lot of unknown, having a set of new friends at your school, as well as keeping the important people from your past in your life, can make the bad times better, and the good times even greater. Finding this balance is essential, and I’m so glad I found mine. Just because you are at the stage in life where you are transitioning to a life on your own and transforming into a better man or woman, doesn't mean you have to go through that transition alone.
Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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Stop Ranking Women By Looks Just Because You Have An Ugly Ego

Start paying attention to what really matters.

For some reason that is beyond me, college boys (and I say boys because they are not yet men, obviously) seem to still be ranking girls by their looks. I experience this the most with the "tier system" in Greek life - a hierarchy of sororities based off of who is "hot" and who is "not."

Someone recently attacked the sorority I'm in on Twitter - I'll be nice and not call him out - for being "bottom tier", even though my sorority is filled with beautiful, bright and caring women from all over the country who should not be getting bullied on social media by a butt-hurt frat boy.

This spectacle created a lot of conversation and drama that had me thinking about why women are still putting up with this - and not just in Greek life or college. Women are constantly being judged by their looks, and it's unfair. Yeah, we may also look for certain traits in a man, but I can't recall one time in my life when my friends and I just sat there and taunted others for not being "hot" the way these immature boys do. Not once. Not even in middle school.

I want to say that is blossoms from insecurities, and maybe it does in a way, but I think it's more shallow than that. I honestly believe this mentality comes from the desperate need that many have to feel better than others. People are always competing with one another, whether it's in college or in the workplace, which can spark a lot of "salt", as they say. In other words, boys fuel their big egos by calling girls ugly.

It's time that these boys finally become men and start realizing what really matters. Success is attractive, independence is attractive and most importantly, kindness is attractive. This hotness hierarchy of women created by ego-driven boys is pathetic and cruel.

If you're calling a group of women out on social media for being "less hot" than others, you are the ugly one. It's a bad look, and now everyone on Twitter knows you're an a**hole.

This isn't the first time I've experienced this. In high school, boys at my school would make lists of girls who were "hot" and lists of girls who are "not." I'm sure many others can attest to this. It even happens in the workplace, just more discreetly as "locker room talk." Women can't escape this wherever they go, and it shouldn't be that way.

A woman shouldn't work hard her whole life being nothing but selfless and kind to others just to be shot down by barbarous discussions between boys who are usually just trying to conform with those around them and feel better about themselves, not realizing the detriment it causes women who don't deserve it.

To the boy who came at my sisters and I. To all boys who think making fun of others is okay: Stop ranking women, stop being shallow and stop feeding into your ugly ego.

Cover Image Credit: Mikail Duran

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I'm Saying Bye, Felicia, To Freshman Year And Starting To Flirt With Sophomore Year

Chapters can't last forever, so here's a quick run-through of the first chapter of my new beginning!

FLASH, as I sat in my room thinking about freshman year, I came to the realization that it was really over. This left me with a feeling of sadness because one of the best years of my life had been completed. So, I guess it is true when they say that time flies, and this is why you must strive to create worthwhile memories. The end is always near.

I have changed a lot over this year, and I couldn’t be better for it. I’m more aware of myself, and I love that I”m getting better with God. Going off to college is meant for you to find yourself and explore who that exactly is. While I have year one down in discovering this, I ’m looking forward to seeing what I flourish into.

I was looking through my pictures and Snapchat memories throughout the year, and all I could do was smile at the precious things and laugh at how silly my friends and I are. The memories that I captured can’t be replaced. It’s also about the memories that happened, but you weren’t able to capture them. Those are the ones that get brought up and you all sit there wheezing trying to get it out.

I absolutely believe that you will meet lifelong friends in college. I’m lucky enough to have two sets of friends. I have my Southerners friends and my everyday friend group. We have been in some crazy and hilarious situations.

One of my favorite memories is finals week during the first semester. Leave it to Wes and me to start a dance party on the 10th floor of the library and actually get other people to join in. Another one of my favorite memories is going on an adventure to find my first drive-in movie with three of my closest friends to see “It.”

Three people deserve special recognition because they impacted my year the most. Chrystah, because I was fortunate enough to be able to bring my best friend with me to college, and I wouldn’t have wanted to start freshman year without her.

Courtney for starting out as my roommate and ending up as the person I can cry to at 2 a.m. when I need to, go on several WalMart trips, and meet interesting characters at the TMB with (you know exactly who I’m referring to.) I can honestly call you one of my best friends now and can’t wait to live with you for three more years. June 1st here we come, baby!

Lastly, Micaiah, the girl I’m lucky enough to get as a Big. The night I found out I was your little, I cried...literally! I loved being able to just stop by your room and eat Fruity Pebbles with while we watch “Shrek.” You will do anything and almost everything for me and I am eternally grateful!

“The moment you’ve all been waiting for...The Marching Southerners!”, the highlight of my first semester. The Southerners is an experience like no other. From the people to the music, and the have no choice but to be in awe.

The first time my ears had the pleasure of hearing Stars and Salvation, I knew that I was home and that this group of people were something special. I could continue on this subject, but I will save that for another article.

So, to the soon to be freshman, treasure and make the most of this time. You only get one freshman year of college and you have to decide how it turns out. Even though it was cut short, I can look back on my freshman year and be full of joy.

You’re going to make mistakes and feel totally lost at times, but when you bounce back, those worries and mistakes will seem small. This is me ending another chapter of my life, while you are about to begin yours. Good luck to you all and as Ivey would say, “Peace and Blessings!”

Cover Image Credit: Personal Photo

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