Three years ago today I graduated from high school. I was beyond thrilled and relieved to be done. I was free. I was proud. I was accomplished. And yet that fall I started all over again. I began the college career that I still continue today (yes, once again I have the feeling it will go on continuously).
My college years had a bit of a rough start. I wasn’t at my dream school, I wasn’t out of the house, I wasn’t experiencing what at the time I felt like everyone else seemed to be enjoying.
Like numerous others, I started at a community college and to say the least, I hated it. I felt out of place and confused. I was an honors student. I studied to do well in my classes. And yet I ended up at a school that accepted everyone no matter the grades, no matter the awards. I started my first semester telling myself it was only temporary, a small transition, in a couple years it would be all over.
And then I experienced two of the best years I have had yet.
I made the tennis team and I can honestly say my life changed forever. And it was all because of the people. I met people, kind and fun people. We cared for one another, we shared most everything with one another, and we still love one another. The people I experienced during my “transition time” made the difference. They brought my life out of the depression I had started to dwell in.
Today, I have one more class to be attended tomorrow before I conclude my junior year of college. I am no longer a community college student. I do not attend the college I used to dream about. I attend a school I didn’t even apply to during high school it was so far from what I had in mind. I attend my mom’s Alma Mater, my dad’s enemy way back when. And yet had I not gone to a community college first I would have never ended up here, living the life I am, and somehow knowing this is exactly God’s plan for me.
Sometimes we think we know what’s best. Sometimes we think we have all the answers. Sometimes we think we deserve it all. And then we meet the people who show us that we don’t. Who show us that we are the ones that are different, the ones that are a little weird.
Robert Frost wrote,
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
I started college with every intention of having the worst of attitudes. I didn’t give it a chance, I couldn’t see God’s greater plan.
Maybe today you find yourself in a completely different place you had once wanted to end up. Maybe you just aren’t happy with where you are at. I urge you to look past what is temporary, perhaps God has a great plan in store and where you are at is exactly where he needs you at the moment.
Community college was my road “less traveled” and now looking back I know it “made all the difference.”
I grew up. I matured. I met people different than what I was used too. I became a stronger version of myself who learned her true value. My community college experience happened exactly as it was supposed too. And all I can say now is thank God (and yes, I do mean the Big Guy above) it did, because I would not be where I am today or even more, the person I am today without those two years.
Dare to venture the road less traveled. Have confidence. Stay strong. It might make all the difference in the end.
(Just a few of the people who “made all the difference.”)