How I live my life
My heart is in a million pieces. I’m tired of trying to cover things up. Every one sees it. It was the time. Am I okay with how it happened, no, but I will never regret it. I guess all there is to do now is move on. I can’t help how I feel but I don’t regret the time I’ve spent on it. This process is going to be heart wrenching but it’s what’s best, I guess. I told myself years ago that I can’t make someone feel something they don’t feel but I hoped and prayed that I could. It’s time to pull myself back together.
Nothing makes you realize who you have become like being immersed in what you used to be. Making the decision to go to UF has been the single best decision I have ever made. I think back all the time on how blessed I am and how far I have come. I moved to a new city, essentially by myself, with $1200 to my name. I did not even know if I would be attending UF yet when I got there. I am happy to report that exactly two years later, to the day and even more broke than I was then, I LOVE it.
I have learned so much in the past two years. I have learned and I’m sure will continue to learn, where I thrive in life and where I fall short. I know better than ever my weaknesses and my strengths. I have gotten A’s in classes and gotten much less. My GPA is not perfect. I could have worked harder but I am happy. In saying that, I still do not know where life is going to take me. I graduate in less than a year with a degree that I’m not sure how I will use but I am extremely thankful that I have been given this opportunity. I moved to Gainesville with the intent of getting a degree and making new friends. I did not realize that I would gain so much more than that.
Being raised in a small town city in Florida, essentially lower Alabama, where for the most part, people are all the same; I thought I was kind of a big deal. I knew every one in town. I went to church with important people. I knew all of the “right” people. I pretty much thought I could do whatever I wanted and there were no consequences. Man, was I wrong! There is so much more to life than what I had ever even thought was out there.
After being in Gainesville for three days, I got the amazing news that I would be attending UF. I could not believe it, I had actually done what I set out to do. I moved into my apartment, which was pretty awful, with people I had never met before and was supposed to live with them. To make a long story short, I eventually had to call the cops on my roommates for harassment, which is not like me at all, I’m pretty tough. Not only was I pretty bored and all of the time because I had no friends but I had to deal with two girls who relentlessly cussed and called me names. I knew though in my heart that the move was eventually going to be worth it. I knew I was supposed to be there. I made it through that summer pretty unscathed. Praise the Lord for that!
Little did I know what would become of the next two years at UF. I’m not even going to go into what classes are like. I will say this, I hate school just as much, if not more than I always have. I am making it through, even though I have now started to have panic attacks. Classes are classes, that’s not what this post is about. While my education is extremely important I have learned more from being on my own. I will be right at $22,000 in debt when I graduate. Many people ask me if it is worth that and having to pay it off for the next 10 to 15 years of my life. I give the same answer to every one. ABSOLUTELY YES! Had I stayed in my hometown in the safety of my house and at a University that was 5 miles from my house, I never would have been as happy as I am now.
I have made the best friends in the entire world, in a place where I was not sure I would ever fit. I have as well, learned what a real friend looks like. I have made some of the biggest mistakes of my life in the past two years. I have hurt people and I have been hurt. While life would have been a lot easier not having to experience those things, I would not take anything that happened back. I have learned lessons that I will use for the rest of my life and can hopefully help others through. In the two years, I have had my faith tested and shaken to it’s core. I have had highs and lows with Jesus. In all of that, I can say that it has made my relationship with Jesus more real. I have also realized that I am not and will never be perfect. I know what I believe and am learning how to stand up for it.
I remember that one of my biggest prayers for a long time was that I would never be comfortable. Well, sometimes I feel like I wish I had never prayed that because let’s be real, who doesn’t want to be comfortable? But, I know that is a desire of my heart. I find myself falling into the comforts of life and growing complacent with life all of the time but God always finds a way to shake it up a bit from financial problems, friendships, dumb decisions, gossip, to getting bad grades and I am thankful for each when they are over. The trials in life and how I handle them make me who I am.
All in all, it is two years later and I, as far as I can see am a completely different person than I was when I left home. Parts of me will never change but that is to be expected. I don’t want to lose the foundation of who I am. This whole post came about because I have been home for almost two weeks and have seen many friends from high school that I haven’t seen since we graduated. It is interesting to see how we have all changed but are still the same in many ways. It has been easier for me to see how my change has been positive but accepting the fact that others have changed is a lot more difficult. Every day I am seeing how I need to give people as much grace as I give myself and realize that I don’t know what they are going through.
I have 15 credit hours left at UF and I am done. I sometimes catch myself falling into sadness that I will be leaving a place that holds unbelievable memories in less than a year and all of my friends will be going in different directions. I have to remind myself that achieving the goal of graduating from UF is only the beginning to the rest of my life. Here’s to my final year in Gainesville and the lessons, heartache, happiness, panic attacks, and friendships it will bring. I am ready. “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart. Lean not on your own understandings. In all of your ways acknowledge Him and He will guide your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
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