As I sit here writing this article, I am all too aware that this time two weeks from now I will be a college graduate. It’s honestly kind of rude to think that I need to write three papers between now and then, but it is what it is. Maybe one day I’ll miss writing papers. (Probably not). I know what I will miss, though. I’ll miss the late nights giggling with my roommates in my cozy little apartment. I’ll miss watching the campus fill up with people sitting by the pond, setting up hammocks, and enjoying the sunshine as warm weather rolls back around. I’ll miss teaching exercise classes at Campus Recreation and connecting with so many different people. I’ll miss the sound of college students at 1 a.m. laughing and yelling as they stumble home from the bars. I could write a whole article about what I’m going to miss. While I think it’s good to acknowledge what I’m going to miss and allow myself to feel it all, I want to take this opportunity to shift my perspective from a place of lack to a place of abundance. I want to focus on everything I have received in my time here instead of what I’m losing. When I look at it that way, I realize I’m actually not losing much, because I’ve gained so much joy, growth, and perspective in my time here.
- The confidence to be my authentic self and pursue the things I love.
Before even transferring to UMass, I applied to be a spin instructor at Campus Recreation. Teaching spin was a dream of mine, but one I didn’t foresee coming true until I was much older. To be accomplishing that dream at the age of 19 was and still is surreal. I can see how much I’ve grown as an instructor, but also in my ability to show up as my authentic self, speak my truth, and feel confident and strong in front of a room of 40 people. It also gave me the confidence to pursue teaching beyond college.
- Lifelong connections.
Special shout out to Her Campus for this one. As you can imagine, being sent home from school just two months after transferring posed some worries in terms of how I was going to meet new people and find my place. I joined Her Campus in the Fall of 2020 and felt immediately welcomed into the community. I made so many friendships that I still carry with me today, even with those that already graduated. In my opinion, a friendship made on Zoom in the middle of a pandemic is one that will most likely last far beyond. There are countless other connections I have made outside of HC that I am also incredibly grateful for, and have made my time here so much richer.
- A DEEPER APPRECIATION FOR THE LITTLE THINGS.
Senior year has been my first and last full year in Amherst, and it has given me the opportunity to deeply appreciate the small things. I want to marvel at the way the afternoon light hits my room in my little temporary home, to stop my car on the side of the road to pat the neighborhood cats, and to take full advantage of being just a walk away from my closest friends. Being back in Amherst has reminded me of how quickly time goes by and easily things change, and therefore how crucial it is to soak up all of the magic in each and every moment.
I’ll wrap up my last Her Campus article with something I wrote in one of my first. As I wrote in one of my very first: “I can also look back and understand how a lot of the change in my life has redirected me in a positive way and been a teacher, and so I trust that this change will do the same. Perspective is everything.” I’m curious, nervous, and excited to see where this change will redirect me, but I feel confident in my ability to handle it thanks to everything I’ve gained in my time here.