Life Lessons: Mistakes and Goals and The Little Things.

Reminiscing about college makes me sad – partly because it’s almost over, but mostly because it didn’t live up to my expectations.

You know what they say,

hindsight is 20/20.

If I could go back and start freshman year over with the knowledge I have now, I would in a heartbeat. But wouldn’t everyone do something differently in their life if they knew then what they know now? I honestly think so.

Visiting Springfield this weekend put my heart into knots. I miss that town and my friends from Missouri State. As I was driving to meet Jodi for dinner, I wondered how different my life would be now had I not transferred to a school closer to home.

Love Life

When I graduated from high school, I was highly impressionable. I went to MSU with the promise of having my best friend there and not being as controlled by my mom, but looking back all I can think of is how much I hated it – I was doing awful in classes, Sam and I quit talking because of a guy, and I was 3 hours away from the family I was so close to. I took it hard, and the more I talked to Jodi, the more I decided that transferring was the best option. I wanted to go to Mizzou, but my mom wouldn’t allow the “party school” atmosphere. Sadly, my mother has had a hand in a lot of the decisions I’ve made. I was never sure what I really wanted, and my mind changes faster than you could believe sometimes, so what others thought and said always played a major role in my decision-making. Looking back, I hate that I was so vulnerable.

I guess that is something good that came out of college though – I have grown immensely as a person. I still may not be sure of what I want, but I know I’m not the only person who is about to graduate and is unsure of their future. I have become more independent. I know I can take care of myself, and I am much better at not letting people walk all over me or make my decisions for me. I take advice and apply it, weighing my options and my pros/cons, but I never let one person’s opinion be my deciding factor anymore. I no longer try to please the masses. I no longer am trying to please my mother, which is incredibly difficult, but necessary.

Please don’t think my mom is a terrible person. She is one of the most amazing, caring and giving people I have ever met. But she thinks she’s right about everything, always (okay, sometimes she’s right, but not always). She is my biggest supporter and would do absolutely anything to help me reach my goals.

What are goals and where can I find some?

Do you ever feel like you’re just going through the motions of life and don’t really know what you want or how to get it? I do, and pretty constantly lately. I’m about to graduate, but I feel so inept in my abilities. I worry I’m going to be a failure. Honestly, if you had asked me two and a half years ago where I’d be when I’d graduated, I would have told you that I’d be with that stupid boy. I guess that’s something I learned throughout college, too, that you should never center your life around something that can change in the blink of an eye – whether that’s a friendship or a relationship, or even a pan of fresh-out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookies – they can all disappear. That entire relationship took me on a dizzy ride around and I’m only just starting to stop spinning.

I don’t know when my dream of working for a magazine in the city, living in a high-rise loft and eating pastries at a cute coffee shop ever went away, but I still have that desire in the back of my mind. I honestly can hardly wait to start applying for jobs. I’m going to search every city until I find something that fits. I honestly don’t see myself staying in St Louis for much longer. I’m not sure where exactly I see myself, but I’m telling you, it isn’t here.

To be completely honest though, I would be so content with just falling in love and making a home. I could craft and blog and live and love. I would be so happy. If only it were feasible. Maybe someday, but not today.

Today, I will snuggle into bed in my one-bedroom apartment in preparation for another week of classes. I will work hard this week to bring my grades up while I begin packing for when my lease is up, planning my Europe trip, and working out in my free time.

I’ll try to remember the good times I’ve had throughout my four and a half years of college. I’ll appreciate the friends I’ve made, the things I’ve learned and the opportunities I’ve had. I’ll mourn a bit for the things that didn’t work out the way they were supposed to or the way I had hoped that would, and then I’ll move on, remembering that everything I have been through in the last four and a half years has made me into the person I am today. And as much as I question my value, I am constantly reminded that the person I’ve become is pretty okay.

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