Five years ago… no, wait, 10 years… no, somehow it’s been 15 years since I graduated from college. And the day after graduation, I wrote this in my journal:
If had college to do all over again:
- I’d be less afraid.
- I’d be more involved.
- I’d study less.
- I wouldn’t procrastinate.
- I’d realize that grades aren’t that important.
- I’d fall in love more and be heartbroken less.
- I’d be easier on myself.
- I’d have learned earlier that nothing is really as big of a deal as I think it is.
Attitude is what I’d change. Sure, there were events that happened that never should have happened Or ones that I wish would have happened, but really, the events of it make up who I am and shape my attitude.
And now, 15 years later, I’m living in a way that newly-graduated me would be proud of. (Even if she might cringe at the size displayed on the tag of the comfy shorts I’m wearing today.)
I still have fears, but I don’t let them hold me back. I get involved when I want to, with what I find important for me and my family.
While there’s nothing to study for, I know college-grad me meant to spend the time with what’s important and not let the little things consume me. Check.
I’ve learned to set earlier deadlines for myself than when I actually have to get something done so even if I procrastinate, it’s just on my own deadlines, not on the real ones, so I’m still early with things.
I’m in love. With my husband, with my boys, with my friends. And I’ve realized that heartbreak is just a part of life but that it passes and one day, you realize that while you might remember being heartbroken over something or someone, you won’t remember much of the details because you’re too busy living your life.
I still struggle with disappointment when I set high expectations for myself and I don’t meet them, when I can’t do everything, let alone do everything well. But I’ve learned that hard work does count for a lot and there are some things I have to let go and also that no one is paying as close attention to me as I am.
Nothing is really as big of a deal as I think it is. I remind myself of this constantly. Everything seems big in the moment, but very few things are truly that big of a deal in the long run.
It is very much about attitude. I can choose to let myself get bogged down by the little things, to stress out over every little thing, to let fear hold me back, to worry about what others think…. or I can keep my head up, do what I think is best for me and my family, work my ass off, and know I don’t have control over everything.
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