Thursday, April 2, 2015

The good, the bad, and the ugly: My college experience

Let's rewind back to September of 2009. 

I was an eager college freshman, living out of state at Salve Regina University. I was a chemistry major and a dance minor and I had just started a new relationship.... 

While at Salve, I danced with the company. To this day I refer to them as my saviors. I don't know what I would have done without them. 

Because I wasn't doing so well in my classes (something I was not use to) I had to meet with an advisor once a week. Our conversations were great and it was in his office I realized that chemistry was not the right career path for me. I somehow always ended up talking about the dance company instead. It was the only thing at Salve that I actually dedicated my time and energy towards. 

Well, let's just say between gradually realizing that your dream school was actually your worst nightmare and that your relationship was quickly evolving into the most unhealthy relationship ever, I left after one year.

I moved back home and enrolled the following September in Community college (which coincidentally happened to be the same school my ex-asshole was enrolled in) ...

I felt like I dug myself a huge hole which I had fallen through.
I landed in a dark tunnel with no exit.

I spend the next year and a half taking as many Gen Ed classes as I could all while trying to figure my life out.

A year into community college my relationship got even worse, having gone from just mentally abusive to now also physically abusive. I was called names, told what to do, talked down to, hit repeatedly, stalked, threatened and followed around. I lost pretty much all of my friends and my relationship with my family was also greatly effected. 

There was no light at the end of the tunnel.

So, I spend a lot of my free time looking back on high school and how I use to be. 
I loved everything about high school and I used my memories as a way to cope with all the sadness and loneliness I was feeling. 

You see, I always loved dance, but I could never justify majoring in the art because, lets face it, you can't make a living off of it. But I did remember how much joy it brought me working as an assistant on the weeks in the classes for 4 and 5 year olds.

That May I decided to switch my major from Undecided to Early Childhood Education.

My life was finally getting back on track. 
I finally found a dim light at the end of the tunnel. 
It was still unreachable, but at least it finally showed up!

That June, I broke up with the evil-worless-excuse-of-a-human that I had wasted almost two years on and enrolled in my third and final semester of community college.

Everything was starting to come back. I was a strong, independent person again. I was the person I use to be. 

I even reconnected with someone who I had previously fallen for back in high school. It didn't work out then but as of right now second time seems to be the trick. We went on our first date in November of that year (2012) and the rest is history :-)

I also began  applying as a transfer student to colleges in the area. That's when Lesley University popped up in my research. It's known to be the 'Harvard of Education' and I made that my reach school.

Lucky for me, I was able to maintain a 3.9 GPA while in community college, so that of course made me much more confident applying as a transfer.

I got my acceptance letter and in January of 2013 I enrolled in my first semester at Lesley.

At this point, 2.5 year as an undergraduate student seemed more like 10. 

I felt like I was never going to graduate. I felt like that light at the end of the tunnel was getting farther and farther away.

Then, all of a sudden, that light was 
just around the corner.

Three years later, with a few minor set back, many awful administrators and a dozen weird classmates I can finally say that not only have I graduated and received my diploma from Lesley, but I have also received my official teaching license!

It took me five and a half years to get to this place. Its now March 2015 and I am the happiest girl in the entire world.

...I've never been closer to my family. I love and appreciate them.

...I have the best job and the best coworkers.

...That boy I reconnected with three and a half years ago will one day be my future husband.
We just celebrated out three year anniversary! 

...The idea of graduation has now become reality.

I finally made it out of the tunnel.

If you ever feel like giving up, don't.
If you feel discouraged, do something about it.
If you feel like things aren't going the way they should, find your voice and stand up for yourself.

I hope that my story can shed some light to someone.
This isn't just about my college experience.
This has been about my life experience over the past 6 years.

It does get better.
6 days, 6 weeks, 6 months, 6 years.
It ALWAYS gets better.

You just can't give up!

Until next time,