The Beginning of Your Story

“Welcome to the beginning of your story!”

This has been the opening line to each email I’ve opened this past week. The fall semester has begun and now I am officially a college student.

To say I have handled this transition easily would be an understatement. I feel completely lost in a sea of people and ideas. I knew this was going to be different from high school, but I really wasn’t ready.

Before me is an endless road of possibility. I have the chance to reinvent myself without any pressure.

A fresh slate. No hurt from the past, no familiar faces.

Just me.

This first day has been strange. I walk around trying not to look too much like a freshman, but also remind myself that literally no one else cares how you look.

Currently , I am sitting in the hub of the university: The Memorial Union. This place holds a strange atmosphere. It is unlike a cafeteria, even though it pretty much is. I’m sure I’ll seek refuge here many times form the disgusting heat that will not just leave.

The next few days are going to be interesting and full of loads of anxiety, but I’m curious to see how they go.

Alright college, lets do this.

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Wait, You’re A Latina ? 

There is nothing more confusing than being a mixed kid. 

When I was little, I was the only girl at church with darker features. Everyone else had blonde hair and bright eyes. 

At first, this didn’t bother me. I thought I was the coolest thing being half Puerto Rican. When you’re small, race doesn’t seem to exist. You’re just all people together that look a bit different. 

Once I hit the age of 10, race began to be real. All my peers began to talk about it because we now knew what it meant. This is when life became confusing. 

I have a white mom, but a Puerto Rican dad. What was I? My school records said Hispanic, but everyone said that I was white.  I had no clue where my identity was.

By 12, I was at the awkward stage that we all wish was buried away from the world. I had gone through a school year of torment and now was even more confused about my identity but I was also angry. 

I hated how I looked. I wasn’t like the other girls who seemed to have it all. Their golden locks always so pretty and their really cool looking eyes. I felt so plain. 

I tried everything to fit in with the super preppy girls. They had the life I thought I wanted . When I entered high school, I still had no real idea of who I was. I just had an image I was trying to replicate. 

The voices in my head would constantly remind me of the ugliness and self hatred I had towards my body. It didn’t help when I entered the great big world of boys . Those girls blessed with locks of sunshine and brilliant blue eyes seemed to catch the attention of boys all the time. I didn’t attract much at all. The voices told me very clearly ” look at them, they’ve got the full package, you’re just the ugly duckling silly!” 

Seventeen  is when things began to shift. I was rebuilding myself again after another very rough year. This time around, I told myself I was sick of the lies. I wanted to be authenticly me. 

This started with looking to my past. I found so many amazing ancestors, from both sides. My pride in my heritage grew rapidly and suddenly, I didn’t see being mixed as a burden. 

I have stories of resilience threaded through my history. The white side has some of the first United States citizens and  pioneers . The Puerto Rican side has slavery, immigrants and native islanders. 

Now, I live with pride. I’m in love with the heritage I posses 
Being more aware of my heritage has brought a new found sense of fight to me. Seeing the injustice breaks my heart and the fight for immigrants makes me remember the family that came to the United States for its dreams and freedom. 

I’m blessed that I can see both sides. This mixed thing isn’t as confusing. I know for the rest of my life I’ll struggle slightly but, I’d rather know that I’m something wonderful. 

Reguardless of what group I feel I belong in , I’ll always know that I’m a melting pot of strong willed people and that is no where near confusing. 

Welcome to Adulthood Kid

You know how all the adults love to warn you when you complain about high school?

” Take it in now! Once you graduate you have to face the realities of life and you’ll wish you could be a teen forever!”

If I got paid each time I heard that , I’d be rich. To be fair, I hated high school so regardless of what people told me I believed that life would be waaaaaay better out of that prison. So far, it really is and I’m excited for the future, but this week decided to be the big ‘ol reality bomb.

To start my week, I officially got my tuition receipt for the first semester of college . I opened my student page, saw the balance and immediately sat down. Honestly believed I had been shot in the gut. The idea of paying for college terrifies me and I don’t understand why it costs so stinking much! Why do I need to pay over $48,000 to become a better educated woman? Basically, I realized how truly broke I will be these next four years.

As a music major, I need the best skills possible so this summer, I have been taking private lessons. This week my teacher told me that it is time to upgrade to professional grade . As exciting as this is, professional cellos cost just about as much as I am paying for my first semester of school, sometimes even more. I’ve been searching on all the realms of the internet to try to get an estimate of how much I need to be saving. After lots of crying over price tags, I came to the conclusion that I can never spend money again. I will hoard all of it like Scrooge.

Mid week, we got the cherry on top. My new car , a used 2007 prius, had a warning light go on right as I was driving to an appointment. After quite a lot of muttering and asking the lord why, I parked and went to the appointment. While waiting to be called back, I turned to the internet for a solution and texted my parents to inform them of my awesome new issue. From what I found, it sounded like it had something to do with the batteries of the car. I informed my mom on my findings and then started looking up the price tag on them. A normal battery costs around $180 , to which I cringed at. The hybrid battery? $5000 !!! That one made me just about have an anxiety attack. I made it through the appointment and got ready to leave. But the car would not start. I was officially stranded . Luckily, my amazing dad came to my rescue and our mad dash around town began. We had to leave the prius at the office , unable to solve the issue and it begin to late for a tow. Thankfully, my dad got in contact with someone who specializes in hybrid batteries. So the next day this expert met us at the car and took a look. It started up and made it back home with no issues, but this didn’t last long.The issues arose once again I ran a few errands.

Looks like it’s time to replace the 10 year old hybrid battery. Thankful this savior hybrid man can do it for less than $1000, but I just keep crying. I am truly embracing the college life style; broke and a mess!

This is the reality all of those adults were just waiting for me to have so I could then tell them they were right about being a teen.

As much as I HATE this money situation, I just have to accept it.

Cause guess what? Life is gonna move with or without me. I’m choosing to roll with it cause its the first of many of these situations.

Life gave me one heck of a welcome to the big leagues this week, but it is not prepared for who its dealing with.

Lets go adulthood; its on.

Lessons Learned From High School

 

  1. Everything wont always work in your favor. Be ok with that.
  2. People are gonna drift. Friend groups will change .
  3. Don’t let anyone tell you falsehoods about yourself. You are a strong woman and don’t accept anything else.
  4. Not every guy is a prince charming. Don’t fall for the innocent looking texts.
  5. Doing things you love will save your life. Never give up on your passion
  6. Don’t worry about fitting in. You need to be your own person.
  7.  Everything will be better. You have to push through
  8. God made you perfectly
  9. Don’t let people discourage your goals
  10. Treat yourself every once in a while
  11. There is nothing wrong with you
  12. Don’t stress over what others think. You do you love.
  13. It’s ok to express your feelings. They are very mutual by the way.
  14. Don’t try to grow up too fast. Enjoy the years you have
  15. Laugh, dance and smile. This world has so much happiness to offer.