While in college, I think it’s safe to say that we tend to forget who we are or what we like. I think of college as a second puberty because you are morphing into new people by your experiences and memories. I’ve read other articles where people in college almost have an identity crisis because you’re not too sure where you belong or what you’re trying to achieve. This could be in terms of style, personality, and even the people you associate with.
This article isn’t a “how to find yourself” because I think it’s safe to say you won’t find yourself in anything else. Only you can really discover yourself. This article is mostly a reflective piece on my past four years as I come to a close on college. Graduation is in 3 months, and I’ve been reminiscing a lot about what I’ve been through, who I’ve met, etc. I’m very happy with the person I’ve become today.
First off, most of my college experience was unfortunately tied down to a toxic relationship. I think mostly, I tried to morph into several personalities just to appeal to him. While doing so, I was surrounded by your typical blonde sorority girls that everyone wants to be while at a large SEC school. My biggest regret is not embracing who I really am and what I really liked. I remember throughout the years forcing myself to dress a certain way, such as the lululemon gear, to fit in at college. It’s embarrassing to admit, but also growing to know you’re no longer in the position to fit in or impress anyone. Physically, I tried my hardest to look like someone I wasn’t. Bleaching my hair every 6 weeks, achieving the most blonde I could, and spray tanning my body every 2-3 days. I was also so afraid to show off the tattoos on my arms because none of the other girls had tattoos. Guys would always tell me that they didn’t like girls with tattoos.
I think by my junior year of college, I did not look like myself. I didn’t even feel like Luisa. It was almost like my college alter ego. Because I’m surrounded by this daily, I should look and act this way. But in my senior year of college, things really took a turn. After ending the toxic relationship and cutting out external influences that didn’t serve me anymore, that’s when my own self really started to come through. I noticed I started listening to the music I had always been obsessed with. I also started dressing more casually and in a way that I feel comfortable yet confident. Also, I embraced my natural beauty by not dying my hair anymore, wearing makeup, or spray tanning. It’s crazy to think how different I was two years ago when my personality revolved around partying, what bar I would look best at, and how great I could look.
It feels refreshing to be simple and normal.
My most important takeaway from this piece is to do what makes you happy. I’m by no means trying to sound like a pick me because I don’t care to dye my hair or wear makeup anymore. I still get my nails done every two weeks and will spray tan for important events. But now I embrace my horrible high school tattoos. I wear tank tops freely. But my biggest stress is that you make sure you are doing these things for the right reasons. I will repeat – you are doing these things for yourself and for the right reasons. Not to impress a person, not to fit in while you are in college, and not because you think it’s what makes you the most appealing.
By all means, do whatever you want, but for you and only you.