As young women, these are the days when we slave over trying find God’s will and trying to decide whether or not the 50 cent vanilla shot in our latte is really worth it (it always is). These are the days when we must choose: put off that ten page paper on Dante to attend the midnight premier of Thor, or put off that ten page paper on Dante to go to bed at a decent time. When 90% of our prayers are about men. These are the days when we are blissfully caught in the diminishing days of a carefree youth and when we have one foot in our Future. When our friends suddenly become our family, and when we realize our parents are suddenly right about everything.
This is college, leave sleep at the door.
You’re eighteen, and you’re sitting there, freaking about the future. Hey! Welcome to every single young woman’s life! It’s natural to be worried about these four years, obviously. But 98% of what we worry about never happens, and that’s a proven statistic.
I’m a natural worrier. I get anxious if I don’t know every detail of my life. Do you want me to pull out the chart I just drew in February where I wrote what I want to be doing and where I want to be for the next three years of my life? Because I can.
Here are some common worries we all have when we're about to done the duffel bag and head out:
- Everyone says the best years of your life were in high school. I remember thinking, “I sure as HECK hope not,” because if getting paper thrown at your head is as good as it’s gonna get, I’d rather skip college….and stay under my covers…forever. College, now that’s where it’s at. Keep that in mind.
- Everyone is nervous. Everyone feels like throwing up at Orientation. You’re not alone in that regard, and hey, half of us cry just because our hormones are still trying to balance out and because we ALL really, really love Mom and Dad.
- Goodbyes suck. I hate goodbyes more than anything else in life, and a few are going to come your way. I remember feeling stupid because it never occurred to me that I’m going to have to say goodbye to my friends, but your truest friends are going to be the ones you stay in touch with. It’s scary, but ask an adult: not many still keep in contact with their high school friends, and that’s ok. I had a total of three good friends from high school, and we still talk regularly. But there’s Family Weekend soon and there’s so many beautiful week long breaks for mini-reunions. And duh, the Book of Faces.
- Socially awkward? Hi, I’m Carolyn, I blush at every emotion. Embrace that awkwardness because it gives you a chance to be humble. The world needs more humble souls, and by humble I mean embracing who you are. You are about to hit a spiritual, mental, and in some cases, I guess like for me, physical growth spurt these next four years, and you’re going to learn so much about yourself, but that doesn’t mean you don’t know who you are right now. I was terribly quiet, and that was ok. That’s who I was and still am. And NOBODY is going to judge you for that.
- I need to reiterate that last bullet. That’s one of the biggest things I’ve learned my past few years. Whenever I’m drawn to someone, I have to ask why, and then I realize it’s because they come across as terribly comfortable with themselves—all their quirks, faults, and obscure musical tastes. Embrace dat.
- Every single girl brings along their “stuffie.” Don’t even worry about that.
- Modest? Me too! I change all the time in our apartment bathroom, mostly because that’s what I do at home and I don’t think twice about it. And ya know what? My roomies think I’m weird not.
- Cast your worries and fears at the foot of the Cross, and when you feel like you’re about to drown in them, repeat this: I can’t, you can, and you PROMISED. This will pop up all over this website. That’s a promise, too. Lay down and offer up what you’re feeling.
- Sign up for any added pre-orientation event. The Mount has ‘Mountward Bound,’ a program in which you can either go on a camp, a service project, or a retreat days before the majority of freshmen come for orientation. DO THIS, even if it means leaving home a few days earlier than needed. It’s so much easier to meet people and make new friends with a group of thirty than three hundred, at least for me it was. And now, looking back, I don’t even hang out with those guys anymore, but I did those first few months. Also to be noted: EVERYONE wants to make friends the first few days and weeks. Join in. This time is crucial.
- If you don’t know how to operate the printers in the library, ask. Don’t wait until you’re a senior to ask and everyone looks at you like ‘WHUT.’ I was shy. Shut up.
- Holy crap, and take advantage of all those programs your school is going to drown you in! Free on campus movies, club nights, bingos, adventure trips, service trips, magicians, bowling nights…it’s always a shock during break when you go home and think, ‘What! I have to PAY to entertain myself now?’
- Make an upperclassmen friend. I had tons of senior friends my freshmen year, and unlike in high school, grades no longer matter. At all. They will want to share their wisdom with you, and my Lord Christ does it help. You might find your long, lost big brother who will travel across Europe with you.
- Confused about the money system at your school? Chances are everyone else is to. So don’t ever be afraid to ask about anything—ever.
Above all, turn to Christ. It’s easy to say that, to say trust in Him, but please know He has your best interests at heart. Feel free to contact me, too, because I’m here for you.