A Years Time

It’s amazing how much can change in a year. From last August, to this current August, my life has changed drastically in ways I wasn’t expecting. Often, we know when to expect change. I always knew ever since I was a little girl that the year 2015 would be a big year for me and I would graduate from high school and leave home for college. I knew this change was coming. I was ready for it.

Still, some changes aren’t quite as expected. This year has brought a lot of change I wasn’t expecting. This day last year, my stepfather passed away suddenly, and I think this is what has caused me to analyze change so much. This one, hurtful moment changed my life in many ways. It affected me emotionally, and heavily impacted my family dynamic. It brought a lot of heartache and created many obstacles for my family that we are still working through. This was a change I did not have planned. This was a change that was not welcomed.

There have been great things that have happened this year too. I started dating my best friend, I got an internship, I got a position on the executive committee for my sorority, I made new friends, although while also losing some, and I declared myself as a double major. So much can change in a day- a minute even- let alone a year. It’s crazy to think how far I’ve come from last summer to this summer, and yet how much I’ve stepped back. Some aspects of my life that weren’t blooming quite as much last summer, such as my professional life or my love life, are doing very well now. Other aspects that may have been great, seem to be at a low point right now.

Still, I am not worried. I know that soon, even more crazy unexpected events will occur, good and bad. The good might not be good forever, but neither will the bad. Even more change is expected to come by next summer as I will hopefully be graduating college and officially moving out of the home I’ve been living in for the past ten years. I’ll have to say goodbye to a lot of great people, but I believe when the time comes I will be ready. For now, I am going to live in the moment and do my best to accept change as it comes and believe the universe has a plan for me. Still, it’s nice to look back and reflect on what my life once was way back when.

Easter 2017

This Easter was a very hard day for my family. If you keep up with my blog or my life in any way, you know I lost someone very special to me back in August. My step father passed away suddenly, and this year his 43rd birthday fell on Easter.

I’m not going to say I had an awful day full of tears. Yes, of course there were tears, of course it was an extremely unfair day and it made me think about how unfair and cruel this world is. Not a day goes by where I don’t think about this, and wish he were still here. But still, today was Easter and one of the few days of the year I am home with my family and friends, so I had to embrace  it.

I didn’t do much on Easter, although I really wish I could say I did. I don’t have any cute OOTD pictures or anything. I was dressed comfortably in a tank top and shorts with my glasses on and a pair of old flip flops.

I dyed eggs with my mom which was a lot of fun. I haven’t dyed eggs since I was a little girl so that was nice. I had my best friend come visit and we got to catch up for the first time in 5 months since we go to different schools. I spent some time with my dogs and brought them to the local dog park. All around, the day wasn’t anything exciting, but it was still a pretty good day.

Yes, it was an extremely sad day, but I am forever grateful I got to spend a few days back at home with some of my favorite people. I’m always happy to be back with my mom and pets and all of my childhood friends. The day was very relaxed and much needed.

I hope you all had a great Easter this year!

Looking For A Sign

When someone dies, we look around for signs that they’re still with us. But what are actual signs and what is actually just our mind tricking us? Is it all just our mind tricking us?

A day before my grandfather got sick, he was giving away poppy flowers as the supporting veteran he was. When my grandfather was sick, my mom asked him to give her a sign that he got there okay. Two days after he passed, a lone little poppy flower sprouted in our front yard. It was a sign.

People always told me that spirits show up in the form of butterflies. When my mom left to go put my dog down, she got out of the car with my dog, and a butterfly flew with her all the way to the entrance. When she left and my dog had passed, my mom felt the need to go to the cemetery. And there she showed up to a beautiful butterfly sitting on the tombstone. And she just knew, she wasn’t alone.

The day following my stepdad’s passing, we had been searching around for signs that he is still here. I had been wandering outside in mid August and no butterflies have appeared. Is he here? My mom picks up a roast beef sandwich and refers to how much he loved roast beef, but that she never bought it. Then she went to squirt mustard on her sandwich and it squirted all over her shirt. Is this his way of saying, “Ha! That’s for never buying me roast beef!” or did my mom simply just squirt mustard on herself?

About two weeks prior, my brother had received flowers from his boyfriend. My stepdad said to him “Thanks, now I have to buy your mom flowers!” Later, he discussed flowers with my mom and said “you love lilies right?” a common mistake he always made, and my mom questioned if he’s just being his sarcastic self and kidding, or if he actually forgot. She’s always loved tulips.

After he passed, my mom had two bouquets of flowers delivered, both of beautiful white lilies. Is this him delivering the flowers he never got a chance to?

We look for signs to see if loved ones are still here because we need them to still be here. But what is real and what isn’t? How do we know when someone is actually around, or when our mind is only tricking us?

Brain dump

First semester of sophomore year COMPLETE! I have to be honest- this semester was hard, which is why I think it’s time for me to do a little brain dump.

This semester was hard for many reasons. First off, losing my step-father this summer has really a toll on my mental health. It has definitely made me think about the purpose of life a little more. All of this philosophical thinking has definitely stirred up a lot of anxiety and unnecessary stress. I’d rather not think so much about the unknown, but I just can’t help it. Why do these things happen? What is the purpose?

For some reason, I’ve recently had this feeling of not belonging or not fitting in. Last year, life was great. I had a lot of friends, I was doing great in school, everything was fine. This year it feels like I lost a lot of my friends in general because over time, people change and you realize they are not who you thought they were. And that’s okay, I’d rather not be surrounded I can’t be 100% myself with, or friends I have to worry about talking about me behind my back. It’s hard to find real, genuine friends who are honest and who care about you. I don’t have many, but those I do have I appreciate. But sometimes at college I can’t help but feel a little bit lonely.

I haven’t been very social in general anyways because I’ve been so focused on my grades. I’m really hoping to graduate a year early and to get a job and an apartment with my mom and to just start my life. Things have been very stressful this semester, but I’m hoping in time everything works out. I hope my family moves past this incident, and that I find more genuine friends, and that I find success in my future so I can take care of my mom. But who knows what the future holds? Only time will tell.

What I Learned in 2016

2016 was an eventful year to say the least. It started off AMAZING! The beginning of 2016 was one of the happiest times of my life and I truly believed I was off to a great year. And oddly enough, the second half ended up being easily the worst time of my life. So here is a quick recap and what I have learned from 2016.

2016 began perfect. I had a ton of friends, got a bid from a great sorority, made Deans list, and was with a great guy I really liked. Everything was honestly going ideal and I didn’t think things could get much better. And then, summer rolled around. The boy I was with left (he was studying abroad so it was expected, sad but nbd) and I also found out he wasn’t very faithful, I lost/ grew a part from a majority of my friends, both the ones I made in college and my friends from high school, and my stepfather suddenly passed away. Life. Was. Hard.

Life is still hard. I’m still trying to figure things out. I still am unsure where I belong and am still having a hard time making and maintaining friendships. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do with my life and how to cope with losing people. I learned a lot in 2016, but I still have way more to learn.

One thing I learned in 2016 is to never take anything or anyone for granted. I lost a lot of people this year, and sometimes you don’t get a chance to say goodbye or tell them how much you love them, so do it as often as you can. Another thing I learned is how unexpected life can be. Things happen suddenly and randomly. Sometimes these things are great, sometimes they aren’t, most of the time they don’t make sense. That’s just a part of life, and even though some parts of life hurt, you just have to take the bullet and keep moving forward.

I learned this year that when someone close to you dies, a part of you dies with them. My stepfather helped raise me and he is a big part of who I am today. Being home without him is weird and lonely. It’s sad to know that things will never be the same, and part of me thinks I will never be the same. But again, life goes on and will go on with or without you.

I learned this year that image isn’t everything. I’d rather hang out with girls that are labeled as “weird” but are easygoing and nice and that I can truly be myself with than girls who are pretty and popular, but not so friendly. Image means nothing and does not build healthy relationships. What builds healthy relationships is compatibility and common interests. Spend time with people you like, not people society says you should like.

I learned this year that sometimes, things actually do work out. I had a stressful semester, but still managed to balance being on my sorority’s executive committee along with my hardest semester thus far, and once again made Deans list. I started dating a boy who I actually think might care about me which is a nice change and I have to say, he makes me very happy. Slowly, but surely, things fall into place. You just have to trust the process of life.

I learned to not be as trusting of people as I used to be. Unfortunately, people lie and break promises and not everyone is a good friend, even if you really believe so. Over time, people show their true colors. I’ve learned to let go of friends who make me feel worthless or that I worry will say mean things when I’m not around. I’ve learned to only trust myself because at the end of the day, I can’t depend on anyone else to be there for me.

2016 was quite a rollercoaster full of endless ups and downs. I’m excited to see what 2017 has in store for me, and can only hope for a better year full of many more life lessons (and maybe a cool internship). Stay tuned.

(I’ll stop with these rant-y brain dump posts after winter break I promise thx 4 reading ily)

Christmas 2016

Hey everyone, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!

I wanted to write a quick post about what I did this Christmas, but unfortunately I don’t have much to say or any pictures to show. Christmas was different this year. Celebrating the holidays after a huge loss honestly just feels sad and empty. Like there’s just a huge chunk of what makes the holiday special missing. It was just so evident that my stepdad was missing and that the holidays won’t ever be the same, and it definitely took away much of the cheerfulness of Christmas.

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My family didn’t do much. We stayed home and spent the holidays with each other. We weren’t much in the Christmas spirit, but it was nice to all be together because who knows how much longer we will be? Life is short, spend as much time with the one’s you love as you can. This is especially important to me since I’m rarely ever home. It was nice to be able to spend a few days with my mom, catching up and telling her everything going on in my life.

I didn’t get much for Christmas. My mom bought me two pairs of jeans, a plaid shirt, and a sweater. I found the shirt online which is definitely my favorite thing I got. It’s from Express.

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I love the color scheme and the lace-up detailing. It makes it a perfect shirt for daytime and nighttime. I absolutely love it.

The day after Christmas was spent with my boyfriend where we exchanged gifts. He bought me a bunch of cute little things like makeup brushes and a makeup bag (I guess he knows about my makeup obsession?) And the cutest gift he gave me was a scrapbook he made with gift cards to restaurants for us to try, because over the summer our goal was to try a new restaurant every week which kind of failed, but now I have gift cards so there’s really no excuse!! He made me this adorable and thoughtful give, and you know what I got him in exchange? Hockey tickets he already has lol WORST GIRLFRIEND EVER!

That’s it for my Christmas, I hope you all enjoyed the holidays and your time off!

Friends & Expectations

In my short time of living on this earth, I have learned time and time again to not expect anything from anyone. No one in this world owes you anything. Not your brother, not your best friend, not your teacher. And while I think it’s important to be independent and not rely on anyone else, I think like should be full of people who care about their friends as much as they care about themselves.

While I totally think it’s okay to be selfish here and there and to always do things in your best interest, I think it’s equally as important to be a good friend through thick and thin. You should be there for your friends in there time of need whether they expect you to be or not. You should always be in touch with your friends and know what’s going on in their life and how they are feeling. Really, it should be easy. If you really value a friend, it shouldn’t be so hard to reach out every once in awhile and simply ask “how are you feeling?” and it shouldn’t be such a hassle to ask your friend out for a little birthday dinner to celebrate the big day. Friends shouldn’t expect anything, they should just be there.

Friendships are easy to maintain as long as two people put in the same amount of effort. If one friend is always reaching out to the other to make plans or to even just communicate, the other friend should reciprocate. It’s a relief honestly to rid friends that seem uninterested in having a relationship.

And while I stand by no one owes me anything, not even my friends, I don’t want friends in my life that feel like reaching out to me and understanding me is work and a responsibility. I want friends in my life who are there for me and do things for me because they want to and because they care about me as much as I care about them. It’s very unfair when you value a relationship, whatever the relationship is, more than the other. It’s unfair when all you want is the best for someone, but you can’t help but notice them falling into a very dark hole. It’s unfair when you are trying so desperately to keep a relationship going for someone you’d do anything for without question, but this person has completely changed and not for the better.

However, what I’ve learned is that people will always let you down, and that’s okay. Letting someone down doesn’t make someone a bad friend or a bad person. What makes someone a bad friend is picking fights when your friend should be happy, and constant canceling of plans last minute just because you’d rather be doing something else, and not answering text messages just because you didn’t feel like it, and not caring about your friends problems because you have too many of your own.

When I encounter bad friends, instead of dwelling on a broken relationship. I let the relationship go and surround myself with my better friends. New people are everywhere and so are better friends.

Now am I the most amazing friend out there? Absolutely not. But I do care about my friends with every fiber of my being. And as time goes on, I’ve gotten lazier about maintaining friendships which is mostly due to the fact I feel like friendships I have to work to maintain aren’t friendships that belong in my life. People grow a part and that’s okay. If a friendship is meant to last, you will both reach out to each other and keep in touch. It won’t only be a one way street.

So what can I do, and maybe you all as well, do to be a better friend?

Pay attention to your friends– When you’re with your friends, be with your friends. Don’t call your boyfriend or FaceTime your friends. For me, this is especially essential with my friends back home since my time at home is so limited. When I’m with my friends I’d like to have their full attention and not be ignored so they could talk to their boyfriends and other friends they see constantly.

Have compassion– It’s important to do your absolute best to understand your friend and where he/she is coming from. Keep in mind your friend’s emotions and fears and quirks before getting angry with them

Don’t judge– Although you might not always agree with the decisions your friend makes, the best thing you could do is not judge them. It’s okay to be honest that you don’t support the decisions your friend might be making, but you can’t stop your friend from doing what he/she wants. Your friend needs to live and learn. The best thing you could do is be there for your friend to talk to, without judgement.

Show gratitude for your friends– I don’t think gratitude is something that needs to be shown with money. I think it could be as simple as shooting your friend a quick text saying you miss them, or making them breakfast in the morning. Even just telling them how grateful your are to have them as a friend is something.

Be reliable– yes, we shouldn’t depend on anyone, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t strive to be someone your friends can always count on. If you make plans, stick to them. If your friend is going through a hard time, be there. Be someone your friends can depend on.

Always be there– Always be there for your friends whether if they have something super exciting going on in their life or when something awful just happened. Be there for your friends even if they’re getting married and being a bridezilla or acting bratty trying to get there birthday party to be perfect. Just be there.

Talk about issues maturely– If you have an issue with a friend, be an adult about it. Don’t text paragraphs in your group chat about how your friend is a total bitch or is a shitty friend. Don’t argue with your friend because you’re so great for your small acts of kindness  and they do nothing. If you value your friendship and if you are mature in the least bit, you will realize blowing up about something that probably won’t bother you in two days could actually ruin your friendship. Instead if something is truly bothering you, call up your friend and tell them calmly and without blame on them and praise on yourself, what it is that is bothering you.

Be there for that person in the same way you’d hope he/she would be there for you- If you wouldn’t want your friend to bail on you or ignore your messages, don’t do that to your friend. We learned this in kindergarten so I don’t know why this is so hard. Treat others the way you’d like to be treated.

Love your friend even for his/her worst qualities– No one is perfect. We all have imperfections whether it be our snarkiness, an annoying fear or phobia, or bad habits. But if you value your friend, these bad qualities shouldn’t matter to you and you should be understanding.

I think you know when you found a true friend when you guys are able to lose touch for awhile and be able to pick back up like nothing has happened and when your friend is always there to support you no matter how much time a part. Time changes people. People change people. When we get involved with new crowds we begin to learn things about ourself and find that we clique better with our new friends rather than our old. Sometimes we also realize that there are friends out there who will treat you better and value more than your old friends ever had. People come and go out of our lives, but it is all with reason. There are people out there who will want to always be there for you. Value these people as much as they value you. These are people that belong in your life.

Miss Bloggin’

Wow. It’s been so long since I’ve been able to sit down and write my thoughts. I’ve been in college for two months and I haven’t once been able to sit down and write freely. I’ve just been so busy and with having to write so many papers, there isn’t much left in me to be able to write more.

But the reason I love this blog so much is that I could write literally whatever I want and not have to worry about what others think. I can write it for my own personal satisfaction and not have to worry about grades or anything. And if other people enjoy reading it, then even better.

I’m not able to write as much as I used to, but I’m going to try writing more because I find myself going insane if I don’t.

College has been insane. Lots of work, lots of parties. My life has completely changed within the past two months. Absolutely nothing is the same. I live somewhere new, I have a whole new group of friends, new classes, new clubs, and new interests.

I absolutely love my friends. My roommate and I get along super well and I think we’re a pretty solid combination. We’re both slobs! And my floormates are AMAZING! I could not ask for better floormates. They have so quickly become my best friends.

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I’ve been taking journalism and communication classes. It turns out, journalism is actually pretty hard. I think it’s just my professor and his teaching style. He gives us a lot of information to study and the only grades we get are our exam grades. And he doesn’t give us any kinds of ideas of whats on the exam. So yeah. I’m strugglin. Communication is better though, which is good since it will probably be my major. I’m thinking about double majoring in Communication/PR and English. I’ll probably even minor in something but that is tbd.

I’m trying to get involved which is hard because I’m already so busy. I spend so much time studying plus I work. But right now I’m involved with my schools radio station. I really wanna be a DJ. I’ve always loved all the different aspects of journalism and I’ve never done anything involving broadcasting before, so this seemed like a great opportunity. Who knows, maybe it’ll be my calling.

Life is pretty good. Of course I miss home sometimes. I miss my friends even though most of my closer friends have already come to visit me in these past two months. Keeping in touch is hard since we’re all busy doing our own things now with our new friends. I can’t complain about my life right now, but sometimes I think about it and it makes me sad. I’ll never sit in a classroom full of the kids I spent the past four years with. I definitely wouldn’t want another year of high school, but I wouldn’t mind one more day. It sucks knowing there are some people I’ll never see again, but there are also some people I don’t need and who I’m better off without. So far the friends I’ve made have been nothing but awesome. I know all my best friends from high school will keep in touch. It may be hard sometimes, but I know everything will work out in the end. My life is going the best it’s gone in awhile, and that’s all that matters.

SOS

As I have said many times before, I am a senior in high school which means I have been looking a lot into colleges lately and am beginning applications and all that unfun stuff. I’ve always had this dream of moving far away for college. My freshman and sophomore year I wanted to move all the way out to California which is very far from where I’m living now in New Jersey. Once junior year came along and I began to look into colleges more seriously, I became a little more realistic. There is no way in hell I’d be able to afford any college in California. And I’d never be able to afford to come home! I would be stuck out in California whether I liked it there or not. And I’d have absolutely no one but myself.

So as you can see, the California dream died down. I figured a good alternative would be to study abroad there one year to see how I liked it. Studying abroad is something that’s very important to me in college. I was looking at a small little school in Pennsylvania called Arcadia University, and if I played my cards right, I’d be able to study abroad every single year. How awesome is that?! I could stay in the country and go to places like California, or I could travel to all different countries around the world! And the best part? It wouldn’t cost anything extra! Arcadia ranks #1 in study abroad. Not to mention, it’s not that expensive. In fact, Arcadia is cheaper than most in state schools for me. Which makes it seem like less of a scam compared to other colleges.

Unfortunately, I know a few people who have gone to Arcadia, and came back home. I did also visit Arcadia’s campus and it’s beautiful, but I’m not so sure it’s for me. But in all honesty, I don’t really know what school is.

I’ve looked at schools like Monmouth and Rider. Both in state schools that I should be able to easily get into. The problem? SOOO expensive! Monmouth is absolutely stunning, but so far out of my budget. Unless I got amazing scholarships, I don’t think I’d be able to afford either school. And why should I go there if I can go to a school, like Arcadia, for less money? I don’t want to be drowning in student loans. This is why I think college is a scam. We’re paying so much money, but when we go to apply to jobs, will it really make a difference if I studied at Arcadia or Monmouth? If it’s an Ivy League school, then sure it will. But for some schools, does it really make a difference?

Senior year is supposed to be easy, but it’s actually a lot of work. All of my spare time has gone into studying for the SATs and ACTs, writing college essays, applications, and looking for scholarships and aid. And everything is just so much money! $100 to take my SATs and ACTs. And people spend thousands on SAT tutors, something I could never afford, but desperately need. Then to apply to a college, there’s an application fee! Application fees usually range around $50-75. It’s ridiculous!

College is stressing me out, and I’m not even in it yet. But on a different note, I feel it’s necessary to mention my top 2 schools. Penn State and Rutgers. Both pretty well known schools with football teams in the Big 10. I’d prefer to go to Penn State, which has a tuition near the same price as Monmouth, but Rutgers is more affordable. Most people who graduate from my high school end up going to Rutgers and there is a possibility I will be the same way. But at this point, I have no idea where I’m going to college. To be honest, I could end up going to community college at this point. It seems like a better, cheaper idea.

Alright, well that felt nice to finally let out my thoughts on this whole college process. I’ll definitely keep you updated with everything. But before I end this post, I could really use your view on college. Where do you go/have you gone to college? What was the whole college process like for you? I would love to hear about your experiences!