Flashback to this past summer, I remember having a conversation with my best friend saying how we would make this the best semester yet: concerts, spontaneous trips, movies, baking, etc. Wow were we wrong. The first semester of junior year proved to be way more difficult than we could even imagine.
Junior year. Wow. It’s tough. I definitely did not believe the majority of college students when they said that junior year was the hardest. It is mentally, spiritually, physically and academically hard. Spiritually? Mentally? Really? Yes really.
As an education major, I took 19 hours this past semester. Outside of those 18 hours, there were also 5 clinical hours added on. My friends and I basically took 23 hours. Within the course of four months, I took 6 classes, that being 18 hours a week and 5 clinical hours a week, I turned in 103 projects and assignments, and guess what? I survived.
This semester was definitely the hardest semester yet. I learned how to write a lesson plan, I learned how to develop an intervention plan, I learned about the importance of mathematics, I learned how to manage a crazy classroom, I learned how to write a “good” test, and I learned how to teach, ultimately.
During these four months, I struggled not only academically, but I struggled mentally and spiritually as well. I found it really hard to find time for Jesus. I started a bible study, called BSF, with one of my best friends, and that was great to stay connected. Honestly, I made school an idol. After the semester came to a close, my friends and I all agreed that we had placed school over God in one way or another. When your life is so crazy and hectic, it can be really hard to not put so much importance on what isn’t in front of your face. School was in front of me so that’s what I focused on tackling. I didn’t work on my discernment, my spiritually maturity, or my faith, but I worked on those 103 projects, that 150 page novel study, or the lesson plan to teach my kids.
I didn’t focus on heavenly things, I focused on worldly things. I became all too consumed with the “here and now,” the to-do list, and the pressures of school. While I did grow spiritually to some extent, I know that in the future, life will be a whole lot better with Jesus by my side. The best times of the semester were those when I chose to ask God for guidance, when I cried to the Lord to aid me in my troubles, when I decided to take a break from school to enjoy myself.
The best memories of this semester were when I decided to be spontaneous, when I baked with my roommate, or when I wrote my favorite blog post (or posts) of all time. I have learned that school can wait. The deadline will always be there and there will always be a to-do list, but there won’t always be college. Towards the end of the semester, I finally gave up on the pressures of doing everything perfectly, comparing my work to others, because I eventually realized that I would remember the memories more than the school work. I mean, I will remember the school work, don’t worry, but I want to have memories of having fun. I want those memories to outweigh the strain that school has been in the past.
Y’all, school is such a blessing. Although this junior year has been tough, it has also been wonderful. I have made new friends that are forever friends, I have discovered some new recipes, I have found my passion for blogging, I have found a new love for fashion blogging, and I have realized that happiness is important.
I sure do know that next semester will be tough too, but maybe this blog post will serve as a reminder to take a step back and realize what’s important in life. Balance is important. School is so wonderful, I love learning, but I also love having fun pursuing my passions.
School. It’s tough. You’ll get through it. Before you know it, you’ll be graduated wishing you could go back!
A few favorites I never want to forget:
Schoology. Love-hate relationship.
Going to the gym at 6AM 3 times a week
Seeing Dan + Shay in the pouring rain
Becoming T Shirt Chair for Chi Omega
The obsession with watercolor
The Switchfoot Concert
The NEEDTOBREATHE Concert
The Ben Rector Concert
My 21st Birthday
Selling my Etsy Prints at Chi O Carnival
Favorite Songs of the Semester:
God with Us (MercyMe)
Yours (Russell Dickerson)
I Was Made For Loving You (Tori Kelly)
Live While We’re Young (Johnnyswim)
Closer (The Chainsmokers)
When I’m With You (Ben Rector)
Love on the Weekend (John Mayer)
What Would I Do Without You (Drew Holcomb)
Moving Forward (Colony House)
From the Ground Up (Dan + Shay)
Make You Mine (Us the Duo)