A Letter to Myself as I Applied for College

Working where I do, and being someone as introverted and prone to day dreaming as I am, it is hard sometimes not to think of what could have been when it comes to my college career. As you know from this post I am one of those people who believes strongly that college is not for everyone. I don't mean that there are some people who can't do college, I simply mean that for some people college isn't the best option and it definitely isn't the ONLY option.

That being said, here is a letter to myself when I was looking at, applying to and choosing a college.

Hello You,

Can you believe that your a senior? This is going to be a crazy year for you. It will be full of laughs, big changes, and tough decisions. I know that you are unbelievable excited to have been accepted at the University of Alabama and that you're already dreaming of Bid Day and your first Bama Football game, but would you do me a favor? Stop and think about the type of schools you've applied to. Every singe one is HUGE with a great HUGE Greek community and a fantastic  HUGE football team. Have you even stopped to think about the fact that you're about to go to a school that will shape your future and challenge you academically? Where in your college search have you looked at the student/faculty ratio? Have you just once considered the fact that you're going to be one of at least 10,000 undergraduate students?

If you thought City was just big enough for you to not be completely noticeable but still make a splash you're in for a BIG smack in the face. You're going to walk into classrooms that seat hundreds of students and feel tiny and intimidated. You're also going to realize pretty darn quick that if you don't go to class, no one cares. Thats great until you get your midterms and feel sick to your stomach about lying to mom.

Why don't you try looking at (AND VISITING!! This only going on two visits thing is a DUMB plan) a couple of smaller schools? I know you think you won't get in, but I'll give you a hint, you won't get in to a couple of the big state schools you're obsessed with either. Cornell is close, but just far enough that you never have to come home if you don't want to and they take one class at a time, talk about focus! Or, if you're really set on going somewhere far away, how about looking at a smaller liberal arts school in Colorado? Or actually sending in your application to PLU? I know you have it almost all the way done already.

Basically what I am trying to say is keep an open mind. You're about to go through some pretty serious stuff that will leave you a different person at the end of it and a large school won't be the best place to come of out it. Try thinking of school as a place to become the you that you see yourself as, not the one you think everyone else wants to see. You may just like yourself better.

You at 25...older and wiser.

P.S. Two more things, you're in amazing shape right now. Even though you don't think so, you'll never look like this again so try to keep yourself in this shape okay? And that boy you're "falling in love" with? He's not forever...and neither are the other boys you're about to date. Maybe you should try dating someone that's not a boy ;)

I know that I never would have listened to any of that advice at that age, I was dead set in my ways. But I do wish that someone (other than my mom) had been there to make some suggestions and help me see that college is whatever you make it as long as you let yourself. And the PS? Well that would have just scared the crap out of me.

If you could go back and tell yourself what to do at that age what would you say? I'd love to hear from you.