I’ve mentioned before in previous articles that Belmont was a last-minute choice. I wasn’t supposed to come here. I was supposed to go to a very different place and lead a very different life, and for a long time I was really upset that I didn’t get to. I spent my first two years secretly hating Belmont, broken up over the fact that things didn’t play out the way I had initially planned. I believed I’d thrown away the four years that were meant to be such a valuable part of my life, completely ignorant to and ungrateful for the fact that I was able to go to college at all.
Looking on it now, I’ll admit that there are things I still don’t like about Belmont. It certainly isn’t perfect, and there probably is another school out there that was better suited for me. Despite this though, I’m so incredibly thankful that this is where I ended up, and I don’t think I would go back and change things even if I could.
It’s crazy to think about how little decisions can affect our lives to such a great degree. The right swipe of your finger can set you down the path to a future spouse. The throw-away elective you took for an easy “A” might lead you to completely reshape your ambitions. Where you go to college is by no means a little decision, but I think most never stop to think about all the miniscule choices they made that came along with that.
There is so much good in my life right now, good that pre-Belmont Sarah would never have even dreamt of as a possibility in her life. The anxious girl that entered Wright Hall for the first time in 2015 is almost unrecognizable compared to the young woman holding three different student leadership positions in 2018. I’m not sure whether or not I have Belmont to thank for this change, but it’s here that it happened, and that’s enough to be grateful for. Like I stated before, there probably is a school out there that would have fit me better. Had I found that place instead though, I wouldn’t have been set down the path that led me to what I have now.
Someone recently told me that they chose to live life without regret. I’ve heard people say this all throughout my life, and it always exasperated me because I never understood it. After reflecting on this though, as well as my time at Belmont, I think that’s changed. If the choices we’d made - good or bad, tiny or titanic - had been different, there’s a reasonable chance that the good we have in our lives now wouldn’t exist at all. That's something worth considering.
It’s natural to wonder what might have been. What might have is intangible though, what is is very real, and therefore infinitely worthier of our energy and appreciation. So, the next time you experience that sting, that feeling of I wish I had, I challenge you to instead take a moment and be grateful for the good. You might just find your life all the better for it.