The bittersweet taste of college


Diamond Hollins, Staff Reporter

“Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters in our lives won’t have a title until much later.” ~Bob Goff

When I was in my senior year of high school, I knew exactly who I was. I knew what I wanted to be, where I was going, and why I was going. Every stride I took was dipped in self-assurance, and every word I spoke was laced with certitude and firmness. I never looked down, always forward, marching toward an irrefutable calling that made no room for mundanity or blandness. My priorities were neatly aligned with my goals, and I went through life gaily with that knowledge.

My grandmother would look at me, a sparkle of pride glimmering in her wise, brown eyes, and say, “Momo is so proud of you, Diamond. I really believe you are going to be something in life.” Her voice would be filled with conviction, and it was enough to inspirit me to never slip off the track of my destiny and never get discouraged by the obstacles I undoubtedly faced.

All of that changed in the span of a couple of minutes.

The glorious day I stepped foot on the university’s beautiful, manicured campus, ready to take the perilous trek to my kismet, all that confidence cowered in a dark corner of my mind. Uncertainty slunk in and proudly claimed its place. It felt like someone had thrown me in the middle of the sea with no boat and no life jacket, and I was helplessly flailing in the frigid water.

I knew absolutely no one. I had no idea where anything was, and the more I started to attend my classes, the more I started to question every idea I ever had about my future. My plans and goals morphed into a scenery of murkiness, and it was almost impossible to put one foot in front of the other without stumbling on one of my lost and broken dreams.

My point is, in transitioning from high school to college, the biggest challenge is having all those notions about your future plans balled up and hurled in a lost and found box. You feel impossibly adrift in the bleak waters of college because you suddenly begin to think that the thing you wanted to be since you were 7 years old seems to be the worst possible option. Your shoulders crumble with insecurity, and you have no idea what to do next.

I met a guy at orientation who told me that before he got to college, he was dead set on majoring in law. He told me how all of his life, all he ever wanted to be was a lawyer, and he planned his life accordingly. When he did get to college, his communication class changed his life and now he is majoring in communication. It is truly amazing how we can think we have our future all figured out and suddenly find out we do not. Things can change in the span of a second.

College is a reality. It is a wake-up call. It is Mom throwing a bucket of ice cold water on you when you oversleep. College can surely wake you up, make you think, and change your mind in the blink of an eye. I like to look at those three things as charming qualities.

It is important to accept that some aspects of our lives are unwritten and unknown. It is OK to not have everything figured out or not know it all. It is OK to change your mind and sit in the ‘undecided’ waiting room for five years. It is OK to have it all wrong as long as you eventually get it right.

Trust the magic of uncertainty. Embrace it, and turn it into something majestic.