My trip to Australia for World Youth Day was amazing, don’t get me wrong, but the time during my junior and senior year proved very difficult. My studies were not going well, and I was struggling to keep myself healthy. It was hard to focus on what was truly the most important thing in my life; knowing, believing, and sharing the love of Christ. While yes, I went to church and still did all those campus ministry things, something was still not feeling right for me. It tended that I would drift into the side of depression every now and then. I did not show or feel many signs that one could attach with such a label, nor was I really diagnosed with depression. It was just something that was there every now and then. That pushed me away from faith in God despite my active faith life.
My junior year was an exploration of what in the world I was planning on doing with my major. Sure, it was interesting, but it was getting harder and harder. I had decided that I was not interested so much in working in parish work. While I would be getting amazing experience in the field, and I would enjoy it, it just seemed not suitable to me at this time in life. That put a damper on my studies some as most people who study what I study works in some form of parish work, although many don’t. The year was overall hard, but what helped was the close friends that I have had and gained that year.
Senior year came about and I had an internship, that we were making up as we go, in retreat work. Or so I did for half the year. Second semester, I had to drop it due to many things. Resulting from that, I needed to find a two credit class because with dropping the internship I had not enough credits to graduate. I can not tell you the stress that comes from that. As well that year, the struggles just got harder and harder. The grades were dropping, the professors expected so much, and I was becoming withdrawn again. I still had great friends, and a couple real close ones who knew my every move, almost literally! There were some real dark moments, but I learned from each and everyone of them. My last freak out of the school year was when I had grades in the CD range. I had read that the average grade in the major was a C. No one could tell me if it was overall, or in each class. Basically, in the end I was able to graduate. Let me tell you, the best thing for me.
Now, why would I open myself up even this little bit into the struggles of my life? I am a real person, and while I may give you all this happy stuff, I hit some dark moments as well as many other struggles. That May 2009 when I graduated, I was the happiest I could have ever felt. Close friends of mine felt exactly what I felt as I was struggling with classes and felt what I felt when I was able to get my degree (two actually…first one had a blotch on it). There was so much that I learned about myself as I had reflect upon my four years at Saint Mary’s. Summer 2009 was a great long time (longer than I have been home in 4-5 years!) to sit and think about moving on and learning and coming to a better place.
From here, will come the story of how I am where I am based on the odd ways to discover things! Please stick around. 🙂 Peace to you all!