If I Would’ve Known: Reflections from a College Senior

Just a few short weeks ago, I attended class on campus for the last time. I rushed in right when class was starting and pretty much zoned out for the rest of that time. All I could think about was how it was my last class until spring break. I really needed that break. 

If I would’ve known that would be my last in-person class as an undergrad student, I would’ve shown up early. I would have given my professor a hug and thanked them for making me a better person and student. I would have paid attention in class, taking good notes, knowing that I would not get this opportunity again. I would have talked with many peers and made sure I said my goodbyes since this would be the last class I would ever take with them. 

The next day, I left my work study job on campus for the last time. I quickly rushed out with just a few short goodbyes and a “see you after spring break.” I did not think twice about it because I thought I would be back in just a week. 

If I would’ve known that would be my last day at my job, I would have stayed longer. I would have given many hugs and thanks to the people that made my job amazing and a great learning opportunity. I would have gone to each office door and said goodbye because I wanted them to know I would miss them greatly. I still do. 

My last day officially on my campus was not appreciated enough. I rushed from a class to a project meeting, then home to meet a friend for lunch. I was barely present because I kept rushing through the next thing on my to-do list.  

If I would’ve known that would be my last day on campus, I would’ve used my meal plan to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner at my favorite places. I would have gotten coffee and enjoyed studying at my favorite study-spot. I would have walked all around campus with my friends and sat on the swings outside just to take in the beauty of my campus. I would have gone to my department hall and talked to every professor I have had, thanking them for the wonderful impact they have had on my college experience and life as a whole. I would have appreciated every single moment I had left that day. 

If I would’ve known what the future held, I would have done things differently. These past few weeks have not been the easiest; I have been extremely sad and lonely at times. Everything has changed so drastically and has caused a lot of worry and doubt for the unknown. However, the unknown is out of my control. The past is out of my control. 

I can only control my day right now. I can go to bed earlier and wake up earlier. I can reach out to my friends who need extra support. I can call my parents a little more. I can hug my roommate a little tighter (since we’re quarantined together). I can write this post so I can relate to others who are going through similar things because now is the time. 

Now is the time to remove bad habits and form healthier habits. The time to become a better friend, sibling, roommate, employee, student, and everything in between. Now is the time to stop rushing and slow down. The time to take care of ourselves mentally and physically. By showing kindness and love to others, we can make these bad days much better. 

There are many devastating aspects that we cannot control right now, but appreciating the small moments and the things we would normally take for granted shows growth and a switch in perspective. We need this switch in perspective right now. Please be kind and appreciate those around you. Treat each day like you would’ve known.