As I finish up the last few weeks of the school year, I think back to the beginning moments of my sophomore year and smile. While this year has brought laughter and happiness, it has also brought times of pain and struggle. It has been a year of change, that is for sure. I started to take my first education classes, took on two new jobs, and played my first varsity basketball minutes. It has also been a year of growth. For each month I have listed what I did, what I learned from it, and what you all can learn from it. Here we go:
August: WalkAbout challenged me physically, mentally, and spiritually. I gained new friendships and a different perspective of the world. I connected with God on a deeper level and gained a deeper appreciation for nature. My advice is to go into the wilderness and spend time with God. Bring people along with you and watch them grow, too. In this month, I also planned a few of my first events as a student government leader and learned that it's a ton of work. Start early folks and work hard because it will be worth it in the end when you see the finished product.
September: This was a month of getting in the groove of things, planning more events, and of course playing more ball. I went on lots of walks with my friends in September. I highly recommend taking the time to do activities that relieve stress. I pushed myself this month. I planned All College Hike, one of the most significant events of the year, and fought for a spot on the varsity bench. I went home and spent time with my family. Valuable time. That's important.
October: Student government actives did not slow down. Homecoming week was hectically blissful. I learned how valuable the help of others is. Lean on others. You might think you are strong, but you are stronger with a team of support. I attended a conference in Louisville, KY with people I don't usually hang out with and planted seeds of new friendships that have lasted all year and will only continue to grow stronger. I spent a lot of time with people that I love. Do that more. Do that the most.
November: I fell in love with fall. Greenville brought Rend Collective to town, and it was awesome. Thanksgiving break at home was reviving. I baked. Do random things like baking if it makes you happy. I watched a lot of basketball. I learned how easy it is to get bleacher butt and also that learning by doing and by watching is crucial.
December: My birthday month!!! These things get less and less exciting as you get older. I grew extremely thankful for my best friend in this month. Basketball continued to challenge me. My relationships continued to challenge me. December was a month for fighting through it and putting others ahead of myself.
January: I rang in the New Year with my friends from home. The interterm education class I took brought me closer to my friends and taught me more about the field I am going into. I enjoyed the snow. I was asked to be a bridesmaid in a wedding. I found a new home on campus. I found new friends and lost them. Things really changed in January, and I had to learn to adapt. Being adaptable yet stand your ground for what you want is hard, yet necessary.
February: Baked more. Spent time with kiddos. I danced. Ran for student body president! Celebrated love. Went skiing. Won student body president! Planned more events. Went to NCAA National Championships! Many great things happened in February. I learned to have fun and never think you are more valuable than anyone else. We are all valuable.
March: I went to Las Vegas for spring break! This was one of the most memorable trips of my life, and I am so thankful for the friends I went with. This taught me to spend money on experiences and not things. My aunt also got married, and my sister chose her college. As Thomas Rhett sings, "Ain't it funny how life changes?"
April: My family experienced a great tragedy. I saw the people that I respect and love the most hurting. I learned that you can't always solve the problem, but you can still love those affected by the problem. While this month was terribly sad, I also experienced great joy. I went to my first NBA game, went to Kansas City for a service project, celebrated the resurrection of Jesus, and spoke at Vespers! Just know that even in the bad, there is good.
May: To be announced. I am sure it will be great!
And that's my sophomore year, folks! Here's to the past that teaches us and the future that gives us hope!