For most students across the country, the start of December marked a stressful time. Finals season began to kick in, and the libraries began to see more visitors than ever. During the last week of classes, I was more ready than ever to kick my exams in the butt! I felt so on top of my life - academically, health-wise, and socially. Nothing could stop me... Except for maybe a car accident the weekend before study days officially began.

Two weeks before this car accident, I had broken my nose in an unfortunate bike accident. I thought my troubles had ended after I took time over Thanksgiving break to heal, but it turns out not! On the way to a club with friends, irresponsible driving left me with a pretty intense laceration and three different broken bones in the right side of my face; it was a painful and traumatizing experience to say the least. Most frightening of all, though, I no longer had control over anything, and I really couldn't find the point in anything.

As a teenage girl, it really sucks to mess up your face. It sucks even more as an aspiring broadcast journalist. At first, I really thought God was sending me a sign that television was not the right path for me. My mom told me that God was just telling me that I needed to slow down. As time passed and I began to recover I realized the message God was actually sending me: that I am so, so loved.

I believe we all have our own purposes for being alive on this Earth, and I have always found mine in being there for other people. My favorite hobbies have always included making friends and setting up events to bring people together. To give you a better idea of my need for social activity, I literally wrote my college essay on Friends Club - a club I started in high school where students from all different grade levels could gather to eat Chick-Fil-A and watched the beloved 90's sitcom, Friends (and that essay landed me a Spring Admission spot at my dream school, what's good USC?).

When I arrived to the ER the night after the accident, all three of my roommates ditched their plans from that night to meet me there. I had too many visitors for the nurses to handle. I couldn't see out of my right eye, and my neck brace constricted me from moving very much, but my hand was never empty of another one of my friend's hands. I knew with every visitor I had that I had to be strong for them. As cheesy as it sounds, their love really carried me through this experience.

Every day after the accident I had more and more amazing people that came to visit me, presented me with gifts, reached out to me over text, posted for me on social media, you name it. It was hard for me to feel down when I was constantly spending time with people I love so much. My apartment was filled with flowers, candles, candies, and cards. I have never felt so supported and loved. My friends at USC really pulled through for me, and my heart grew larger than ever that week after the accident.

In coming home to Atlanta from school, it was definitely pretty difficult adjusting to much more alone time, but my family has done an absolutely amazing job of taking care of me through all of this. I have continued to receive flowers, notes, snacks, and cute little gifts in the mail, which has also made my days a lot brighter. To pass all this down time on my hands, I have been watching a lot of movies, as one can imagine. One particular holiday movie, recommended by friend, stuck out to me more than the others, however.

That movie was It's a Wonderful Life, in which the discouraged George Bailey learns "no man is a failure who has friends". Clarence the guardian angel sure was spot on with this one. We all have ups and downs, and life can get extremely rough when we least expect it. When you are there for other people, though, they will be there for you. Remember, even in the toughest of times you are so incredibly loved.

p.s. - Shout out to ALL OF MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY who have filled my heart with more love than I ever thought was possible! You guys have helped me see the positives of a very negative situation. I love each and every one of you so much.