.. college preparatory school?

I feel the need to rant a little bit.

I went to a school that is well-known for being a college preparatory school. Many people view this as a fabulous thing; I know I did, but I’ve personally stumbled across some problems with what that school constantly drilled in my head.

“College.. college.. scholarships.. college.”
Sure, college is great. I don’t want to make it seem like it’s not. However, there were no other options encouraged. It was college.. or college. You wouldn’t catch anyone encouraging travel, taking a year or more off to work and save money, or just flat out saying it was okay if you didn’t want to go to college – because in my town, that is unheard of. I wish I could explain the anxiety that was/is drilled into me.

I don’t feel college is for me.

It took me a very long time to accept that thought, as it was constantly intruding into my mind. Every time I thought about it, I instantly felt like a failure. I felt like I wouldn’t amount to anything. I wouldn’t be making any money. I wouldn’t be happy without all the money. I would be less than my peers. People would think less of me. People would look at me as uneducated, lazy, or just flat out dumb.

It might seem silly, but I still feel these things quite often. I have a full ride to the University of Toledo and it hurts that I can’t stand school any longer and I’m passing it up. I also have a 3.9 GPA. I just applied today to graduate in the spring with my Associates in Business Technology Management. This is a huge step for me – I cannot wait for school to be over so I can finally do what I want with my life.

How do you expect a 21 year old to know what they want to do with their life when they have hardly experienced life? I have been lucky with my years. I’ve been to 10 different countries and over 30 states, performed with a band at famous landmarks in Europe, worked for a Fortune 500, ran an organization as state president of 6,000 members, taught myself CSS and HTML, ran/run my own business, and many others.

I have had a glimpse of life outside of college. There is so much more than a piece of paper. There is so much more to experience. My experiences have kick-started a hunger to travel and learn through more experiences. I like meeting new people and listening to their stories. I don’t do much talking because there is too much to learn from others.

I don’t want it to seem like I’m bashing people who do want to go to college – there is certainly a reason to go for nursing, engineering, etc. But for business? Eh. Take as many classes as you’d like, only experience will prove if you know business or not. This is just how I’ve been feeling.

Want to go to college? Great.
Don’t want to go to college? Great.
Want to drop out of college because it’s not for you? Great.
Don’t want to waste your money with college because you’re a lost puppy? Smart.

There is something for everyone but college is not it for me right now. If I want to return at a later date, lovely.

I am just upset with my high school for not opening my mind to other options. I sit in $18,000 of debt from my first year of college. Do I regret it? Absolutely not. Would I be in a different place had I known it was “okay” to not rush into college? Maybe. Who can say?

I just want to say to my friends how proud I am of you for going to college, working, or being a dreamer. You all continue to amaze me. Keep following your heart and don’t let anyone tell you no. Your happiness is vital. Follow that happiness. Life is too short.

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Letter 2.

To the friend who broke my heart,

I am sitting here staring at my keyboard because I don’t even know where to begin. Where have you been the last 7 months?

I don’t know what happened with us but now it seems clear that you wanted to leave and have nothing to do with me anymore.You didn’t seem to care or take my feelings seriously when I told you how you hurt me because it took you 2 months to text back after I was honest with you.

I have been wanting to type this letter for months. Now that I’m typing it, I’m finding I have nothing to say and that is sad. It seems I have better things to do with my time.

Funny how you can go from texting someone all day every day, hanging out all the time, to not speaking a word. Don’t ever text me again and say “I’m here for you,” because you weren’t and you aren’t.

You have no idea the hell I’ve gone through, the pain I’ve endured, or the battles I’ve won. I’d like to keep it that way. Sounds morose, doesn’t it?

You will never be more than someone I once knew.

Annie

Letter 1.

This letter is to someone who is in my life for a reason because the timing was all too right yet all too wrong.

Dear sunshine,

How are you? I miss being around your warm smile. The few days we spent together are some of the most nostalgic memories I have. I look back on videos I recorded when we were physically together and videos you’ve sent me with thousands of miles between us and smile – but my heart aches to return to a moment with you by my side once more.

You are one of the most comfortable people to be around. Whether it’s how genuine you are, your wide taste in hobbies, or how you’re naturally a people person, people see the good in your heart; I wish you could too.

A lot of times, we reflect on the past and spend so much of our present replaying it over and over and over again. We do that until this past situation slowly breaks us down and catches up with us in the present. It makes me sad to see the people I love become  consumed by their past actions or be taken in the undertow of previous pain in their heart.

I tell you this all the time, but I wish you could see what I see. You are so talented. God gave you a gift in the arts – but that surely isn’t the only gift he blessed you with. When it came to you, he was very generous. He made you a good friend, brother, son, and family member. He made you goofy, lovable, and genuine. He made you passionate, handsome, and complex. But you see, the complex is in the best way possible.

It’s as if there are levels to you – like in a video game. Once you understand one, or break through a barrier, the next level is waiting. Each one harder than the last – but you grow stronger and wiser the farther you adventure. Not everyone in the beginning levels stay with you as the game grows more difficult. It may be hard to understand at first, but it’s okay. It will be okay.

I hope the people you keep close to you tell you how proud of you they are. I am so proud of you – for following your dreams and pushing through the tides. I wish we were closer – in distance and in heart. I know there will forever be mutual unspoken words between us.

I feel as if you’ve been struggling and I just got the urge to write to you. Remember how rewarding everything will feel in the end. Take a step back now and loosen up – break all the tension in your body and smile for a second. Don’t always be so down on yourself.. you are incredible.

Things might seem hard now, but they won’t always be. Besides, if anyone can do it, I know it’s you. I hope if you ever need me, you know I’m here for you and I’ll be here for you through anything and everything. Once again wishing we were closer in distance and in heart.

Protect that heart of yours sunshine, because it’s truly a pot of gold. Remember what is important to you – and remember that you will forever be important to me.

I hate it when the timing is all too right but all too wrong. Maybe one day we’ll cross paths in a coffee shop and pick up where we left off.

Love always,
Annie

A letter to the friends who haven’t left..

Hi friendos,

I just wanted to take the time to say thank you. Thank you for staying by my side through this chapter of my life. Whether you’ve been in my life for a month, a year, or 7 years, I want to give you a thousand hugs for being my friend.

Over the last year and a half, I have been struggling more than I would like to admit. I have had people leave my life in the most painful ways. I have been hurting constantly for this – so much that I often forget to thank the people in front of my face.

I deal with a handful of mental illnesses that you could probably guess and others you’d never know about. But that is irrelevant – because these friends of mine don’t see me any differently. They are patient. They are willing to listen and take the time to understand. They keep their phones on them at all hours just in case I need them. They repeat themselves many times just so I am reassured. They give me new music to listen to so I can focus on something else. They are my world.

I can’t go through and thank everyone individually – but you will know if it is about you.

Thank you for coming over and pulling me out of bed when I have been in a rut for days. Thank you for coming outside with me when I was on the verge of an anxiety attack and talking me through it. Thank you for always being there at 3 in the morning to slow my mind down. Thank you for letting me be a part of your family. Thank you for reminding me not to drink alcohol when we go out. Thank you for checking up on me with your crazy busy life. Thank you for spontaneous days going to explore oodles of record stores. Thank you for laughing with me until we can’t breathe. Thank you for teaching me about meditation. Thank you for always confirming I have my credit cards, my car is locked, and my garage is shut. Thank you for dumbing things down so I can understand. Thank you for supporting my decisions even when they go against the norm. Thank you for encouraging me to write. Thank you for always inviting me. Thank you for rescheduling plans when I don’t have the energy to go out. Thank you for looking past my imperfections and loving me through it.

Your support means everything to me. You are the reason I know it might be over soon. I am so blessed to have you in my life. I am so grateful. I love you guys. Thank you for not giving up on me.

Love always,
Annie

Are you okay, Annie?

I have decided to start my own blog that I plan on staying committed to. I will be using it for rants, open letters, stories, lists, quotes, pictures.. anything that is on my mind, really. I’m hoping there are some things going on in my life that I can discuss to help others out. I’m hoping I can say things that others are too scared to say. I’m hoping I can post something that will make others smile.

I will refrain from posting memes as much as possible, but no promises.

Thanks to whoever pops by. Leave a comment and I’ll love ya forever.

Love always,
Annie