Soon to be Senior
Dear Ms. Marist,
I’m about to be a senior at Marist and I’m lowkey freaking out because I feel like I’ve wasted all of my time on bad friends and shallow people. How do I branch out for the next year without feeling like I wasted my time?
Dear Soon to be Senior,
You say that you are lowkey freaking out but I get the sense that you really mean high key. I’m here to tell you that there is no need to freak out regardless.
Everyone panics when they are about to be a senior, including myself. I don’t feel like I’m old enough to be a senior in high school, let alone almost a senior in college. I get the feeling of waking up one morning and realizing “Holy crap it’s time to get my life together.” That’s what junior year is all about, realizing that playtime is almost over. It’s truly stressful.
To top all of that off, you feel like you wasted your four years on people who weren’t worth your time. That’s hard, because college is one of the most fun times in your life, and you want to look back on fond memories and remember people you were also fond of. If you spend time with crappy friends, looking back on happy times may feel a little bit weird if you no longer value the friendships. While failed friends and troubled relationships may be difficult to deal with, they aren’t wasted.
Just because you were learning lessons, you weren’t wasting time.
College is about finding who you are and what you are willing to put up with. You want to be surrounded by people who lift you up emotionally and support you, and you also want to have fun. In your case, it seems like you saw that your friendships were toxic and so you got out of them. Good for you. Now what?
Focus on the people that really matter, even if your circle is just one or two. When you become happy with yourself and who you are, you gravitate towards the same kinds of people, and that creates healthy friendships. Branching out will come in time, but knowing your worth is a lot more important than having lasting college friendships. While your friends from your first three years may not be so close to you anymore, you learned valuable lessons that you otherwise would never know. If you didn’t struggle through those relationships, you may not know your self-worth. That could lead to settling in friendships and relationships once you leave college, and that isn’t what being a strong, independent adult is about. That’s what college is about: learning the kind of person you are and people you want to be around, even if you have to make a few mistakes during the lesson.
Because you’ve gone through this struggle, it will make gravitating to mature relationships infinitely easier. There is never a wrong time to ask for what you deserve, even if you are asking it from people who can’t end up giving it to you.
Never wasted time, only lessons learned. Make sure the head on your shoulders is strong before you worry about the army behind you. You will be okay.
Sincerely, Ms. Marist