When it hurts to look back, look ahead

Published 4:35 pm Friday, September 21, 2018

My sister began her sophomore year of college this year at University of Georgia. She often sends me videos and pictures and I can’t help but wish I was there.

As many of you know, I attended University of Alabama. I applied there when I had a friend attending and once I committed to going there, she informed me she was transferring to UGA. My heart broke, but I realized I had been denied from my other choice and must go there.

My first few months of college were rough. I had no friends and had just undergone the most competitive recruitment in the nation. I felt chewed up and spit out, like I didn’t belong. I went to the first football game alone, where I cried. Looking back, I wonder why I just didn’t go to the game?

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It wasn’t until October I finally made friends and things started to look up. That doesn’t mean everything was perfect, though as nothing ever is. I got a sorority “big sister” who didn’t exactly love me. I’m not sure she liked me at all; she never wanted to meet me.

My real sister, Alex, got her “little” last night and she sent me pictures and they looked so happy. I wanted to cry. I wish I had a “big” like my sister and I wish our reveal had been a happier occasion.

Alex hasn’t had quite as tough of a time adjusting as I did. She’s made a ton of friends and she also gets to see my cousin, Jenny on campus all the time. They eat lunch together and hang out when they are bored.

I, on the other hand, had one boy at school I knew and I would sometimes make him and his roommate meet me at the dining hall so I didn’t have to eat alone.

While watching my sister’s videos, I begin to regret not going somewhere I would’ve been happier. But, that’s the thing- it’s so easy to look back.

I can’t keep looking back and regretting it; I have to move on and let it go. I want to look ahead and think about the things that could be in store for me. Maybe, I’ll have a daughter and I can make sure she doesn’t feel that regret. Maybe I can use my story to make sure other high school students don’t settle at a school just because they feel like it’s better to go somewhere that’s alright than no where at all.

It doesn’t really matter why I had to learn this lesson the hard way, the important thing is I don’t settle again. I remind myself that I have to keep moving forward, and if I’m unhappy in a situation, then find a place where I can be happy, because I’ve spent too much time wondering and waiting. I hope everyone realizes that we all regret something, and we all wish we could do it over again, but there’s still time to make the most of what’s around.