Dear Freshman Me

Dear Freshman Me,

Okay, let’s get right to it. It’s been two and a half years now (even though it feels like so much longer) since that incredible day you got on a plane from Louisville, Kentucky and miraculously ended up in Boston. It’s been an amazing roller coaster since then and I just wanted to look back and give you a little advice, from a wiser woman.

And I know you’ll take offense to that because you think you know just about everything there is to know about the world, but I just ask you to take a moment and suspend your disbelief. You have a life-changing journey ahead of you that will teach you more than you ever thought was out there to learn.

Freshman Me, you’re so brave for coming this far by yourself. You did this. You decided to go far away and face the unknown. But you’re also so very scared, although you won’t let anyone see it. You hide behind your fire-engine red hair, but in reality you just want a place that feels like it fits you like a glove. Patience, Freshman Taylor, stop worrying. It won’t be long at all before you’ll be begging for college to never end.

But to help you out, I’m going to give you a few pieces of cliché, but absolutely valid pieces of advice to keep with you as you begin your adventure as an adult.

1. Stop thinking you’re too cool for stuff.

It’s a trait that will cause you to miss out on some really great stuff. Go to the ice cream social, attend the floor event, and relish in the pizza party. I know it puts you out of your comfort zone, but that’s the point. You’re one of the thousands here feeling like that. You never know when you’re going to have the time of your life, and even if you don’t, you got free pizza. Win win!

2. Keep your heart open.

Not just to new relationships, but to new friends. Just because you found a group, doesn’t mean you can’t find more. You’re soon to find out that a sorority is just the place for you. Don’t close yourself off to any of it. You’ll quickly find that almost anyone you approach with an open heart will do you the same favor.

3. Get creative in the dining hall, it will make eating there a thousand times better.

Take the chicken from one station and put it on top of your salad. Use the breakfast eggs, home fries, and bacon at the sandwich station to make a breakfast burrito. Take cookies from the dessert station, add ice cream in the middle. Boom! Ice cream sandwich. It will make being on a meal plan so much better.

4. Start doing things for you.

You’re going to start going to the gym and eating a lot better, but do it for the right reasons. Don’t do it to impress someone, or to look like someone else. Do it because when you do, it’s going to make you feel really powerful; like you can do anything you want and conquer the world.

 

5. Enjoy the humor in the tense moments.

You’re going to get a C in a class. You’re going to be stranded outside Skyzone in 30-degree weather. You’re going to lose your ID. You’re going to procrastinate on something important. You’re going to fight with your roommate. You’re going to be pushed to your limits. This is when you laugh. Because what seems like it’s ruining everything right now will be hilarious a year later. It will seem so trivial that you ever got upset. Love these years for the upsetting, tumultuous, beautiful time that they are.

6. You’re going to be wrong about someone.

In fact, you’re going to be wrong about a few people. Don’t let it prevent you from trusting others. You’re going to meet one bad person for every 99 amazing people. Don’t ever let the one bad one keep you from adoring the other 99.

7. Always keep schoolwork at the top of your priority list.

In the end, you have to remember that you’re here for a college education, so that needs to always come first. Make time for schoolwork and make sure that you’re staying on top of your assignments, because it’s easy to get overwhelmed in college and you want to make sure that you’re not leaving your work behind.

8. Enjoy every moment.

You’re going to have to sit in three-hour lectures. You’re going to have to go to meetings that you don’t want to go to. There’s going to be boring times, hard times, sad times, and the worst times. Enjoy something about that moment anyway. Know that one day you’re going to smile when you think about these years, regardless of the hard times.

9. Be grateful.

Be so thankful that you’ve even had the opportunity to come to this school. Take a moment out of every day to say that you’re grateful for something. Even if it’s just that the weather wasn’t freezing cold. It will make every day better if you can find something about it you truly love.