Things I Wish I Could Go Back and Tell Freshman Year Me

The best four years of my life are coming to a close this Friday. I’m graduating from the University of Georgia with a B.S. in Psychology, with an emphasis in neuroscience, and a minor in Art History. I’ll be heading off to Macon, Georgia in July to start law school at Mercer with a full ride. I should feel ecstatic about this next chapter of my life, but now that I’m here all I want to do is rewind.

My parents always told me that I would enjoy college. They told me I would find my people, people just like me that were cool with being uncool and didn’t mind if all I wanted to talk about was the news or science facts or cats. I didn’t believe them. Middle school and high school had been so awful that I didn’t believe that any form of school could be okay, much less actually enjoyed. I wish I had listened to them. I went into my freshman year cautious, guarded, and terribly shy. I wanted to make new friends because I was lonely, but I was so scared being bullied or hated that I really struggled with actually connecting with people. Four years later and I could become BFF’s with just about anyone. I re-learned that the world is full of good intentions, but not always good people, and that’s okay. Being kind and open will get you much further than being cautious.

I’ve never been good at math and science, or at least not as good at that as I am at writing. My parents always encouraged me to follow my passion, but I was dead set on having a career that would allow me to make enough money to support a family. I chose science as a freshman because I saw the potential for a safety net – I could go to school and do just okay and still end up making enough money to be considered successful. Three semesters into my science courses and I was calling my dad, in tears, on a monthly basis because I hated my classes so much. The one thing I learned from this? Do something you’re good at for a career, and save the stuff that makes you happy for your weekends. Science fills me with wonder and excitement, but taking science classes made me want to pull my hair out. I just flat out wasn’t good at them, so I didn’t enjoy them. It made science feel like a chore rather than an ambition. You might disagree with me here, but my advice is to never let the thing that brings you joy become your day job, because then it feels like a chore.

Walking into college, I decided that I wasn’t here to have fun, I was here to make a career for myself. I was so driven. I wanted to work in a lab and have internships with the CDC and go places. Only in my junior year did I actually stop myself and say “hold up, I have the rest of my life to work, but if I go out with friends or wake up early to watch the sunrise instead of applying for a second job I’m going to have so much more fun”. Junior year I changed my mindset, added a minor that made me happy, stopped freaking out about adulthood, got an internship in something that wasn’t science, decided on going to law school instead of getting my Ph. D. (still might happen one day, though), and started living. Wow. Not only did my quality of life improve, my grades did too.

Now that my undergrad life is coming to a close I’m beginning to realize how much I have truly loved this chapter in my life. I’m glad I embraced it, even though it took a few semesters. As I head off into law school I am reminded of how lucky I am that I have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

Go Dawgs!

Advertisements

Dropping Your Freshman Off for College: A List Poem

What to do when dropping your freshman off at college:

  1. Actually be there? I know we’re adults now but moving into a 9 story dorm with one working elevator and no AC isn’t a one man job.
  2. Try not to be too much of a mom. So don’t pinch our cheeks and unpack our freshly ironed underwear right there in the parking lot. Please. 
  3. Get the number of your child’s roommate’s parents. I can’t tell you how important it is to throw parties with these guys while you both have one less child in the house
  4. Get hype.
  5. Get sad.
  6. As much as they’d probably like this, don’t bring booze. That’s the student’s job.
  7. Be prepared to go to Target. Twice. Just kidding, you’ll have the floor plan of that store memorized by the time your freshman is officially moved in.
  8. Let them eat dinner without you. It’s not that they don’t want you around (oh god are we tired of your advice), it’s that we know we need to explore on our own.
  9. Don’t worry. We’ll be fine. Aside from the crazy parties, no sleep exam weeks, mesothelioma, and the possibility that we won’t call home every night like we promised.
  10. Goodbyes hurt, but not having them hurts more.

We’ll be home soon, we promise.

Back ATH It!

Junior year is really happening, y’all, and I can’t even begin to tell you how amazing this past week has been. I moved into my house on the 7th and started recruitment for Delta Gamma the very next day at 7 am! After that, it’s been a whirlwind.

Last year I did a post about my room in the Delta Gamma house with pictures of how I decorated. I didn’t make one this year because I’m still trying to unpack all my stuff. Let me know in the comments section below if you’d like another room decor post!

So back to recruitment. This year I recruited every single round. To say that I’m exhausted is an understatement. Not only do I love sharing the joy my sisters bring me year round, I love being able to goof off in between rounds and get to know all my sweet UGA DG’s even better. This year I had the most amazing bump group (mainly because I got to recruit with my little Rachel!).


Below is a photo of my pledge class from last year’s bid day. I can’t wait to meet all my new sisters on the lawn tomorrow night!

FB_IMG_1471461689385

Last night I did something very, very special. I volunteered with the Arch Society, as well as five other student orgs vital to the university, to help make freshman welcome a reality. The freshmen at the University of Georgia have the opportunity to walk into Stanford Stadium and take pictures on the field. They are welcomed by their orientation leaders, the Redcoat Marching Band, the SGA president, Kirby Smart the head football coach, and President Morehead. I passed out waters and cleaned up trash with my DG sister Stacy.

There’s definitely nothing like being back in Athens. Go Dawgs! 

Something I Wish I’d Known My First Day of my Freshman Year

When I left for college last August I packed my entire life up into neat little boxes and loaded them into my car, ready for adventure. I expected my life to stay organized, fit into the boxes I’d put it in upon graduating high school. I thought my friends would stay my friends, my grades would stay high, and my likes and dislikes would stay in their separated Venn diagram circles.

Some things I needed to know about college:
College is clutter. It’s chaos. It’s “I haven’t done my laundry in three weeks or washed my hair in five days” kind of unorganized. College is all-nighters one week, turning around and sleeping until 2pm the next weekend, and then consistently waking up for an 8am class the next week.

My life didn’t stay in its boxes anymore.

The friends I counted on in high school I barely keep in touch with now. What felt like a catastrophic canyon forming in the middle of my life turned out to be okay. My closest friends, the ones that meant the most, came back to me in the end. And the ones that didn’t? Let’s just say that life has better plans for me. Better plans and better people. I expected to meet my forever soul mate or life long best friend my first week on campus, and was admittedly a little bummed when I didn’t even have one really close friend by the end of the first month. But I kept my mind open to all the new friends I did make. It’s no surprise to me now that the friend group I have is the tightest, strongest group of people I’ve surrounded myself with in a long time. They’re supportive, kind, and, you guessed it, I met them all in college.

As an AP student in high school, I knew how to time manage and handle tough classes…haha that’s funny, no, I really had no idea. I thought I knew how to time manage and handle tough classes. It’s a no brainer, but college is different; AP classes are a completely different style of writing from college papers, testing is mind-boggling, and time management goes out the window when you’re only taking four or five classes and don’t have parents to tell you what to do and when to do it. Not keeping my mind open to changing my lifestyle set me back further than anyone anticipated. Life throws curve balls, and college (or living on your own in general) teaches you how to handle them.

Drop a class, change your major, transfer schools, study abroad – do something that makes your school experience worth it for yourself. Withdrawing from General Chemistry 101 doesn’t mean you can never be a doctor or will fail to get into med school (something it took me a long time to figure out for myself). Take your time, find a better path, work through it. School teaches you what a problem is and what possible solutions are, life teaches you how to handle the darn thing.

xo Bailey

Ten Things Only People Living in Freshman Dorms Will Understand

679a11ba031ff861c898191bfbd2527f

 

Ah the freshman dorm…the newbie residence of choice. Whether you were forced by your university to live in the dorms or you did this of your own free will, you’ll know there are a few unmistakable hallmarks of this type of living arrangement. From the wild parties to the bonding time your hallmates and you had complaining about the terrible wifi, you’ll only understand how real the struggle was if you lived in a freshman dorm.

 

1. Turning on three showers to get the hot water to turn on…

cat-gif-shower-tumblr-water-favim-com-293221

2. That *one* person

You know who I’m talking about. You hear them making promiscuous sounds at 2 am. Every week night.

pitch-perfect-enough-gif

3. The laundry room has no chill

If you’re one second late taking your clothes from the dryer I will dump your clothes on the ground.

4. The casual elevator drunktumblr_n8q1zvsaat1tbh1dho1_400

Typically a he, usually partied too hard that night and tried to find his way back to his dorm alone, only now he doesn’t know what floor he lives on…we all feel a strange sort of envy for this guy. He’s gonna have some great stories to tell ten years down the road.

5. Central heating attempting to turn the dorms into Central America

Could we maybe turn it down to…I don’t know…something other than 85 degrees? Thanks.

6. So help me if anybody burns their popcorn at 1 am ever again

ulvopzh

7. Dorm parties are great until someone gets hurt

Or, ya know, falls out of a 9th floor window. Ouch.

(it happened at my school, read the article here)

8. “We have excellent wifi on campus!” except the freshman dorms apparently

Thanks, Paws-Secure 1, 2, AND 3, for disconnecting during online tests, dropping during crucial essay writing moments, and never being there for me whenever Netflix was my top priority.

9. If you give a mouse a cookie…

if_you_give_a_mouse_cookie if you give roommate

10. “These are the best years of your life!”

Yes, through crappy dorms, scary advanced classes, and a few rocky starts these years will shape up to be some of the best. So even though your shower might not have hot water or you had to stand out in the snow during the wee hours of the morning due to burnt popcorn and a fire alarm, you’ll get through these last few months so quickly and wish for them back – just so you can do it all over again!

xo Bailey