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Anna Thetard / Her Campus

A Letter to My (Almost) College-Aged Sister

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Can you believe i’m turning 17 next week?

That was the text I received during my Tuesday lecture. I couldn’t. It seemed like yesterday you were just in 3rd grade and we had just moved to Texas. You had always been smart. Not to mention driven. With an interest in science, then music, then cooking, then baking, then finance, business and stocks, you have always had your mind on what you wanted. This indication of your growth had been a wake up call for me. Although barely apart in age, your upcoming birthday served as a reminded that I was soon to be 20, and next year I’d be a junior in college. Taken aback, these images of you, of my once small and spunky younger sister, faded back into reality. A young woman, accomplished in her school and personal life, would be starting college in two falls. It may seem far, but amidst testing, prom, games, applications, and college tours, these next few semesters would begin to fleet underneath you.

Another text:

“Wait, which is genuinely better?”

I looked confused, as another text rolled in.

“Being at home, like in high school… or being in college?”

My heart softened. I wanted to tell you everything. To give you every bit of advice I had to muster. As your older sister, it only seemed natural to share my experiences with you. As a junior in high school, I know the prospect of college seems like a daunting one. And it is. I won’t lie. However the things that come with this fast, scary, and new reality are really great. Better than high school? Maybe. But that part is really up to you.

You have developed into a smart and passionate young woman and for that I see great things ahead of you. It’s okay to be scared. I still am, every single day. I cry. Like a healthy amount… Maybe. And that’s okay. These changes are overwhelming and crazy and scary and strange, but you have never been the person to back away from that sort of challenge (have you?). Soon the scare becomes dulled and you learn that the view of campus during sunset or the crazy-fun-from-every-part-of-the-world-college-friends you find will make each day easier than the last. So, try the dorm food (the chicken tenders and mac and cheese are my favorites), join an org (you’re certainly spirited enough for the debate club), give yourself a break (free movie theaters on campus and plenty of ice cream shops), and don’t forget that home is always waiting a short drive from you.

And just as naturally as the sun sets and rises each day, you will become adjusted into this new life of yours. Four years isn’t very long, so enjoy it, and get ready for grad school cause you’re smart enough for that too.

Hi! I'm Kristin, an Advertising Sophomore at UT Austin with a passion for film, beauty, and writing. To be honest, the peak of my writing career was in 4th grade as the head editor of the school newspaper (lost in time unfortunately). When I'm not writing, you'll find me on Spotify curating my perfect Taylor Swift crying playlist.
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