Wow, it feels strange and surreal in my senior year writing about my time here at SMU. Now I can officially say, “It seems like just yesterday I was moving into the dorms. Man, how time flies.” (Cheesy I know.)
Going into SMU, I was excited and looked at it as a way to break away from my family, high school friends, the Newport Beach bubble, the beach, and to ultimately start from scratch. Nothing excites me more than being thrown into new situations and having to make new friends in a new and unfamiliar area away from the comfort of my friends and family.
With that being said, these four years of being a Mustang have been filled with life lessons that have taught me who I am and how to function independently. I graduated my high school with all my best friends and boyfriend and had the summer of a lifetime before heading our separate ways. None of my of friends ended up going to the same university, which turner out to be exciting yet sad and scary since we wouldn’t be able to hangout and experience new and exciting things together. However, it did make for fun stories when we reunite for Thanksgiving and Winter break. Separating from my friends was difficult (and filled with tears) but at the end of the day I knew it was going to be okay. The boyfriend situation, however, was way more stressful especially since I was headed off to Texas and he was going to school in Berkeley, CA. Although we are still together now after many break ups and make ups, being separated from him as well as my friends has taught me how to maintain relationships with those who are close and important to me. Also, it taught me how to make time in my schedule for things that are dear to my heart in addition to my crazy school schedule and making new friends (since I was the only one from my graduating class to come to SMU).
When I went abroad to London the spring of my junior year proved to be another life test. It was by far the best thing I have ever done in my life and I wish I could do it over and over again. Once again, I was on my own heading to London. I knew no one in my program and have never been to Europe. Sure the two-hour time difference from California to Texas was annoying but it was in no way as comparable to the eight-hour time difference that I had to adjust to. On top of that, communication was minimal unless I had access to Wifi. Now that challenged my independence, ability to maintain relationships with those important to me and how to figure out my day to day London life with the support of my new friends.
I am very much an individualist and love doing things on my own. Going abroad was definitely tested how independent I truly am. It taught me how to be self-sufficient, responsible, strong, and overall open-minded. It is different moving from state to state but moving from one country to the next is not remotely comparable. It cultured me and made me appreciate the things and people I have at home in Dallas and California. But what I loved most was the friends I’ve made through each situation I have thrown myself in.
The moral of my story is cherish those you have grown up with, those you have now, and be excited and open minded to those who will eventually enter your life. Maintain relationships with those who are important to you so you never lose them. Everyone is put in your life for a
reason whether it is for the good or the bad, they will teach you things about yourself and things about life. Sometimes you grow apart with friends but at least you got to watch each others journey through life and can still reflect on those fun times you once shared.