Junior Year Recap: Gaining Confidence & Just Doin' ME

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I can hardly believe my junior year of college is over… this is going to sound SO cheesy, but I can honestly remember every moment of my first day, moving into my first dorm, meeting my roommate (and now best friend!) for the first time…

Part of it feels like yesterday, but part of it also feels like years and years ago because of how much I’ve changed in the last three years.

I was getting all nostalgic the other day (as I always do when the year wraps up) and I couldn’t help but just feel so dang blessed to have spent the last three years at my school.

The last three years have brought me the most amazing memories that I will never forget, the closest friends I’ve ever had and a community that feels like a second home. But they’ve also brought me more grief than I ever imagined I would experience in my entire life and with that some very low lows in my personal life.

But it’s because of those friends, my amazing school and this wellness community that I’ve been able to continue healing, changing and finding myself.

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This year was no exception- it has brought me so much clarity, confidence, self-love and growth, and I feel like I have fully grown into who I was meant to be. It may have been a bumpy road getting here, but I’m thankful for every crazy bump, twist and turn that it took for me to be where I am today.

My first and second semesters of junior year almost feel like two separate years. First semester was light and easy- my classes weren’t too hard, I had a lot of free time and I watched Netflix whenever I wanted… I was gliding by.

Second semester? Not so much- I took the hardest course for my major and it was KILLER; I juggled being president of my sorority with a full class load, work and blogging, not to mention staying on top of my health; I dove even further into Blonde Gone Clean and dedicated so much more of my time to it (which I absolutely loved, but it was definitely hard work)… there were a lot of tears, a lot of phone calls to mom and a lot of moments where it all just felt like too damn much.

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But I wouldn’t have changed a second. This semester showed me that I am capable of so much more than I ever thought possible. It gave me confidence, not only in myself, but in my abilities. It made me grateful for the little joys in life, because some days an almond milk latte was the highlight, and that was perfectly okay. It made me realize that I’m damn good on my own and how independent I truly am.

It was also the first time I have felt completely and utterly satisfied with who I am. I was able to truly honor myself this semester. I stopped trying to please everyone and started truly listening to what I wanted and needed. We live in a world where that probably sounds selfish, but it’s so important to do what’s best for YOU.

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This semester also brought me so much inspiration for Blonde Gone Clean. During this semester, especially while slaving away at my almost unbearable work-load in that one difficult course, I realized I need to do something in the future that doesn’t take up all of my time with things I’m not passionate about. Spending so many countless hours at my desk working on the semester-long project, made the precious hours I got to spend working on the blog that much sweeter. I now know that my future career must still ignite my passions. During this semester, I also realized I need to push boundaries and stop placing myself in a safe, little box as I’ve done in the past. There are big things in store for me and for this platform and although they’re not all crystal clear yet, this semester, although it drove me insane at times, showed me that I am capable of more than I ever imagined.

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And as I think back to that first day, moving into my first dorm, meeting my roommate for the first time, I can’t help but get a little sad. College is flying by so so so fast and the thought of only ONE year ahead of me is scary and bittersweet. But if college has taught me anything it’s that life is more precious than we think. We have to live in the moment and soak in every second. As this chapter closes, that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I’m so beyond excited to soak in all that this summer and my senior year has to offer, even if it still feels like I’m too young to being doing this whole adult thing.

Cheers to this crazy year and one more year until (real) adulthood!

XO, nat