A Reflection: Sophomore Year

If you’ve read any of my past blog posts, you’ll know that high school wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for me. I had trouble with friends and classes, which made me become a very negative person. Starting college was one of the best things that could’ve happened to me while I was still in that frame of mind. I’m majoring in something that I love and I’m surrounded by people who are the total opposite of the kind of people I dealt with in high school.


    Next week, I finish up my sophomore year of college. I still can’t even believe that I’m about to be half way to graduation. So as I head into a week filled with finals, I figured now is a good time to look back at this year.


    This year really feels like the year that I’ve become someone that I’m happy with. During my freshmen year, I would get caught up in trying to have the “college experience.” If you’re in college, then you probably know what I’m talking about. People around me would repeatedly tell me that I needed to have this experience of living on my own and constantly being social. It was as if the fact that I valued education over going to parties with friends wasn’t right for someone my age. Not that there’s anything wrong with wanting to go to parties, it just isn’t me. Being a commuter instead of living on campus was something that was frowned upon because apparently I’d be missing out on too much by not being on campus 24/7. But those who truly know me know that this isn’t the type of person I am. I’m quiet and more reserved; I’m literally called the “Mom” of my friend group.


    This year, that pressure to have the “college experience” faded completely. I no longer felt like I was missing out on important events on campus. Yeah, there were some times where I wished I didn’t have to drive 20+ minutes home so I could enjoy going to events held later in the evening. But I also enjoy just being home and not having to deal with the bustle of a college campus. I spend Friday nights just hanging out with a friend, talking and laughing for hours, or curled up in bed, catching up on any shows I missed during the week. That’s where I want to be. Not at a party, without a clue as to what I’m even doing.


    Finding the right friends was another highlight of this year. As much as I completely hate scheduling, I was glad that I was able to spend most of my classes surrounded by friends so that I didn’t have to do that whole first day-awkward conversations thing. Those are great too, don’t get me wrong I love meeting new people, but it was a bit more relaxing having some idea of who I could sit next to when the professor decided to do an icebreaker activity.


    As someone who overthinks way too much and lets every little thing bother her, I’m glad that I was able to find some friends who could teach me when I need to just let things go. Although one in particular followed me to college from high school, I found others who had the laid back kind of attitude I needed in my life.


    Speaking of this friend from high school, she also taught me how to accept how fabulous you truly are, no matter what other people think. Not in a stuck up way either, but in a way where it’s okay to realize the worth you have and that you are more important than how some boy might treat you(note to self: boys aren’t any better in college than they were in high school). So I’m truly grateful for this friend. There is nothing better than knowing you have someone that you can enjoy being around, whether you’re sitting on your couch on a Friday night just venting or being dragged around the mall as she throws clothes at you because you’re too picky to find your own. So since I’ll probably make her read this, I just want to say: thank you for always telling me when I’m being overdramatic and for loving me anyways.


    But let’s be real, school isn’t sunshine all the time. You get hit with weeks where everything is due and you have an exam every other day. Boys will sometimes treat you poorly and girls will be mean, but that’s life. You take it one day at a time and you get through it.


    For all of you who are still in high school or getting ready to enter college, I have one piece of advice for you: put your all into your school work. That's why you're in college in the first place. As tempting as it may be to go out every Thursday and Friday night, your education will still be the most important thing at the end of the day. I’m not saying you shouldn’t enjoy your time in college, but just know, not everyone’s “college experience” has to be like the one you see in movies.

Mika Matias