With life comes many unforeseen circumstances. Who knows what things life will throw your way? I barely know what I will have for dinner tomorrow, so how can I know the things that will happen weeks or even months down the line? I can’t touch on the future but I can touch on the past. The past makes us into our present selves and shapes us into who we become.
With the hardships I’ve encountered throughout college, I can honestly say that I’ve become stronger because of it.
The most significant challenge I faced in high school and community college included my health. In high school, doctors diagnosed me with hyperthyroidism and asthma. The symptoms that accompanied these health issues negatively affected my academic performance, stressed me out to the extreme and even ruined my social life. I dealt with constant anxiety and stress that grew each day because of the various medications I consumed. I didn’t want to go out, I didn’t even want to try with anything. Eventually, my health problems got better and everything slowly came into fruition.
But just as I had thought the worst of the worst had passed, doctors diagnosed my mother with cancer. It felt like a tornado crashed down onto my life, ready to take every possible good thing away from me. Managing the profound personal and financial issues resulting from the diagnosis caused monumental struggles to pay for books and necessary academic supplies.
I didn’t even think I’d graduate from college due to all the things that came my way. For instance, when I first entered college in 2014, I worked two jobs, took care of my mother and focused on ways to maintain both my physical and mental health. I had to take on a lot but chose to rise above my circumstances to search for answers. After all, I couldn’t do anything else.
My health and personal issues made me grateful for everything and directed me to work harder to discover and pursue my goals. I recommend not focusing on the things that seem to take over your life but rather ensuring that you have a good support system and a positive mindset. Easier said than done, I know.
My struggles allowed me to feel emotions deeply and incorporate them in my writing which I felt incredibly grateful for. I pursued writing as a hobby while in school. Due to writing and reading a bunch, I grew to have more compassion and a pretty thorough understanding of the world. I find that this incorporates in writing more passionately and more intuitively with capitalizing my thoughts and emotions.
I, as a writer, empathize with people, a trait that helps me in my community and my job. The English major that I chose to pursue in college has helped me show empathy and leadership in the workforce through communication. I feel ever so thankful for what these hardships taught me. My expression through writing has become something I don’t take for granted, and my now very emotional self has become shaped by the challenges in my life.
This newfound realization from my struggles has contributed to the strengthening of my writing and will further allow me to give back to the community around me. Once I graduate, I will surround myself with a community of people who want the opportunity to help others through their love of written communication and skills with words.
As college students, many can likely relate to the pressures put forth by their families and the events in life that seem like they have no end. Not every bad experience stays as one. All of the challenges seemed to pile up one after the other but towards the end, I overcame them and was a changed person. College taught me a lot but life taught me even more. Balancing the two however, really changed me as a person.