On Monday, Dan began his second year of pharmacy school. Today, I begin my senior year in journalism school. In many ways, it feels like the same ol’, same ol’. Except, there is something a little different: As married people, we are technically now non-traditional students.
This start of a new era has prompted me to write a post has been weighing on my heart for a while. Previously, I’ve had trouble fitting words to my thoughts. I’m going to give it a try, though…
When I began college, I had very clear goals for myself. I wanted to be the best student in my college. I wanted to achieve the highest positions in the organizations I got involved in. I wanted everything that would translate to a “perfect” resume and land me an awesome job.
Basically, I was ready for taking names and taking numbers.
Then, reality hit in a few hard ways…
After falling off the workout track in the beginning of college, I jumped back on and ended up going overboard. This led to me going so far in the opposite direction of the “freshman 15” that my health and life were at risk.
I also had my self-esteem knocked down a few notches by people who were careless with their words and actions. As much as I wish to say this didn’t affect me, it did.
When one of my incredible cousins suddenly died, I also learned how valuable every moment is with the people you love. However, dealing with grief wasn’t always that easy.
But, for all those things, I also never expected a lot of other, happier things that came my way.
I never expected that I would fall in love with someone who’s happiness I’m so willing to put before my own. Seriously, I never understood the concept of self-sacrifice before I met Dan. Now, I am happiest when I know that he is happy. And, because I know he feels the same way, we have a very love-filled life.
Still, I certainly never expected that we would get married before I am even legal to drink.
Even though I’m not pregnant or zealously religious, it was still the right decision for us. I could go more into detail about the unnecessary stigma that some people seem to have about young marriage, but that’s another story for another day.
I also didn’t expect that we would bring a large dog into our small home. But, she manages to fits right in.
At the end of the day, my reality is different from my original vision. Yet, I am truly and honestly happier than I ever was when my life revolved around books and high-bar expectations. (Although I am still ambitious and driven.)
Now, even though I still have visions for what I imagine my future to be like, I know that things will change. I can’t guarantee that all of these changes will be “happy,” they are natural steps in the journey of my life. At the end of the day, as long as I have my health, my family and my ability to appreciate it all, life will be good.
Questions: How has your life differed from your original plans? What lessons have you learned?