Freshmen at their Finest

This morning I was really feeling my music walking back from class (Hoodie Allen). I was busy concentrating on not making it too obvious that I wanted to start dancing like crazy. I still had about 12 more minutes of walking and was hoping this mood would last since it was a bit chilly.

Just to make the morning a little better when I came to a cross-walk one of my friends was stopped at the stop sign, he waved me in a drove me back to the dorms, which was out of his way. We don’t really talk much and haven’t hung out more than once outside of class, yet he still went out of his way to drop me off.

It’s the little things like this when you see the true character of a person. He was telling me how excited he was to be home and take a nap for like the next four hours, but he was nice enough to take a couple more minutes out of his day. He didn’t have to, I wasn’t expecting it, and I wouldn’t have given it a second thought if I just waved hello as I walked in front of his car.

It’s a good feeling realizing that people can be nice and surprise you by going above and beyond what is expected, not conforming to social standards of sticking to the everyday schedule.

It more amazing when this is seen on a large scale with people I read an article posted on mlive.com about a few students at my high school that was retweeted. Apparently the freshmen class voted two special education students prince and princess. The couple was already planning on going to the dance as best friends, the girl has a high-level form of Down syndrome and the young man has Fragile X. I find this really heartwarming because when I went there, my senior year there was a student from band and a girl that was not the thinnest, and many students were against voting for them because they didn’t “deserve” it. So not only does this show a change in attitude for high school students, even just one, it break the classic stereotype represented in movies and television shows disproving the overwhelming effect of media on young teens.

By voting for this couple the crowning went to two people who would really appreciate and cherish the honor. It wasn’t the two most popular students in the school or the prettiest. Two kids that might often feel left out or excluded they can now smile about the proven level acceptance from the rest of their class.

When it’s no longer a story for the news, that’s when we have made real progress.

Advertisements

“Hope is a Waking Dream”

So, if you remember my last speech experience, to follow up I’ll just say I may or may not have gotten a below average grade.

My professor was kind enough to mark up my outline with some suggestions for improvement with an alarming bold red marker.

  • More sources
  • Better eye contact
  • Less movement
  • More vocal variety
  • Better transitions
  • Less pauses

just to name a few

As you have probably guessed, yes I did get a below average grade.

GOOD NEWS!

The next speech we had to give was impromptu. Not a strong suit but at least I didn’t have to worry about sources or eye contact because I had nothing to read. We had to pick a quote off a sheet to talk in front of the class for 5 minutes. We could talk about what the quote meant, what it meant to us, any personal stories relating to the quote, or about the speaker of the quote (assuming we knew anything about them). But the only thing I heard was that it was full credit as long as we talked for the full 5 minutes.

“Hope is a waking dream” – Aristotle

Needless to say I still sucked. I would use a better expression but plain and simple, I was just awful. About 3 minutes in I ran out of things to talk about. However I stayed up there. I began to talk about my hopes and dreams for the weekend which just turned into my lack of plans for the weekend.

Eventually I hit the 5 minute mark, my professor waved me done, laughed and congratulated me on getting 50/50. The class clapped with an added enthusiasm, happy I was finished, and I couldn’t have agreed more.

For the Love of Sports

soccer

Coming home from the road trip this weekend to Ohio, our game Friday was an upsetting battle resulting in a 3-1 loss. The frustration brought by this game pushed us to focus in practice and start hard early Sunday. We did get the W, a 2-0 score to end the game. We huddled after the game. Our team captain told us to all remember this feeling compared to how we felt Friday and to put in the work to get the results we want in the future.

With all sports, not just soccer, and definitely not just collegiate the mental game is a huge part of the game. There are more times where you become frustrated or considering quitting or just want to be lying in bed than there are of just pure contentment. So why do we do it?

Why do we wake up before the sun rises to run sprints and summit ourselves to painful hits? Why do we practice 15 hours a week to play two games that aren’t guaranteed to make us feel accomplished? Why do we ?

Because in the end it is worth it.

The sprints are worth it when I can beat my opponent to the ball on the field. Staying in on Friday nights is worth it when you’re congratulating the team for the great win on Saturday. Being forced to eat healthy is worth it when I know I am performing my best and can feel proud about my play. Missing class for games or practice is worth it when… wait that will always be worth it.

In the end, to me soccer is not just a hobby, it’s my passion. I know I’m going to take so much more out of being apart of the team than staying in good shape during my college years or being able to say I am not just an average student.

Off of the field it’s taught me time management. Soccer has kept me focused on my classwork so my grades meet the team GPA goal of 3.77 or higher. I have learned to understand the definition of courage, determination, work ethic, quality, giving my all, and how important it is to hold myself and those around me accountable. Soccer has shown me how to stand up for myself and that through hard work I can accomplish so much more than I think.

It’s taught me the importance of treating the team like family, and the honesty, trust, responsibility, and loyalty that comes along with being a family.

It has made me a better person. That is why I play.

Making My Dreams Come True

You know what would be cool? If I could just feel like this all the time

However, today I spend six hours on a bus, not only is that boring in itself, I was headed to Ohio… so yeah.

I can’t say I’ve had a bad day but it’s just really unfortunate that there are only so many days and they can’t all be exhilarating.  I guess if I really wanted I could have just gone somewhere and done something else if I really didn’t want to spend my day on the bus. But I’m not one to ever live life that way.

I need my schedule. And I most definitely need people to at least pretend they care about sticking to it. Insider tip – a pet peeve of mine is when people show up to a scheduled event late… even if it is just for something simple like a lunch date on a lazy afternoon.

Since being in college I do believe I have really learned to enjoy life more.  It’s crazy how different people are in actions and beliefs, and even as low in diversity as my school, it is impossible to ignore.

Just the other day, a young man came over to my lunch table and just sat down! I found out moments later his name was Colton and he had previously met some of the guys we were sitting with at a party once.

He quickly introduced himself, learned and rehearsed our names followed by a compliment; mine was pertaining to how I was wearing my hair that day. He spent the rest of the lunch with all eyes on him, he was full of stories and like no one I had ever met before. I don’t know how often I will see him or if I will ever have the opportunity to have lunch with him again.

During that lunch I was in awe at how natural he seemed. He mentioned that he was sitting alone when he spotted us and felt like having conversation so he just came over! Barely knew anyone, yet he didn’t like his current situation so he changed it.

I am jealous of him for that and someday hope to have that confidence to make my own happiness, no matter how big or little of a situation.

All I can do for now is look at this bus trip and be positive. Maybe it wasn’t the most exciting way to spend my Thursday but I got caught up on my assignments and one heck of a weekend to look forward to so I can definitely say I’m well rested.

Especially if I am going to make the bus ride home a little more like this…

Comfort Zone

Things That Make You Comfortable

  • walking in your front door and knowing your home become a smells like home
  • laying in your bed
  • pulling on your favorite sweatshirt on a rainy day
  • holding a cup of hot cocoa in your hands
  • waiting with your car running while parked until the song ends.
  • feeling your cat lay its head on your lap 
  • finding the perfect deal at the store
  • hugging your best friend

All of these things give you a soft and fuzzy feeling on the inside that lets you know in that moment you are being accepted for exactly who you are. This is how you should feel every time you see that special someone. That’s a healthy relationship.

Some people know they have met someone special when they feel the ‘spark’. Personally, I think the ‘spark’ phenomenon works sensation is just the walls of our comfort zones breaking to let someone else in. 

Being comfortable in your relationship means you don’t feel stupid for asking a question, it means you won’t be nervous when bringing up a topic that hasn’t been discussed yet, it means you don’t have to worry about your insecurities, it means not having to get ready every morning, it means not having anything to do but enjoy the others company, it means being able to sit in the same room doing separate tasks and not have to talk,

and it definitely means there is a certainty of trust and expected honesty from both sides.

Too Much to Handle

I was sitting with a good friend at breakfast this morning and we were complaining about how much we wished we were still sleeping when a young couple and their baby came in to eat. A few minutes later another young couple came in with their child. Both couples seemed my age or just a little older.

We watched as one of the fathers tucked his toddler into a high chair. He grabbed the tiny little legs and adjusted them to fit better with the straps of the seat. We then started joking about how much it would suck to be a baby because people could just make you do so many things and you have no choice! After our conversation got more serious I realized how crazy it would be for that to be my life.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying anything against them. It just puts my life into perspective. I am nowhere near ready for any responsibilities past attending college, yet so many people my age are doing so much more. With serious jobs or internships, family issues, money and health concerns.

Everyone has something other than themselves to worry about.

Luckily for me it’s being a part of the Ferris women’s soccer team, my passion.

That’s why I was up for breakfast, for practice, not for my child or work. My epiphany this morning not only made me thankful for what I do have in my life, it helps me to appreciate all the others are doing in the world, especially parents, of any age.

It has to be so much work to monitor what your child eats, when they need to sleep or use the bathroom. Most importantly with how they are raised, always being supportive and understanding, to be the authority figure over the best friend. Parents need patience for mistakes and acceptance of who their child becomes. This is especially true with the activities that steal their child’s attention, like if it’s playing an instrument over playing sports.

If only this was Mother’s Day, my mom would probably tear up listening to me tell her how much I appreciate parents.

 

 

Run, Run, Run Away

I’m standing alone in a room full of people, terrified. My palms are sweating and the only thought running through my head is not to move. I have to keep my head up and scan the room with my eyes, while searching inside for just an ounce of confidence. Time seems to be moving so slowly. I had prepared for this but I was still getting light-headed and slightly nauseous, but I push those feelings away. I hold my voice steady now because I have been given the signal.

I’m on the clock and being graded now. 

The professor is staring intently at me as I continue my speech. I’m avoiding eye contact out of fear of freezing, but I can feel her watching. I did it. I made eye contact and I’m still talking. Wait slow down, I’m talking too fast.

I’m finally done. The class is clapping. I’m pretty sure I even heard some stifled laughs at my conclusion. Or maybe they were stifled because they were laughing at me. No, they were laughing with me.

I return to my seat and finally I am able to breath. That’s when all the thoughts come flooding in. Was my face red? Did I have anything in my teeth? What if my shirt was hanging weird or my hair was messed up? Did I talk with enough vocal variety? Were my points clear? I finally decide I failed.

“There are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave.”

Dale Carnegie

Class ended and I left.

Next stop was soccer practice, we had a fitness test to run. It was the beep test, I passed, and blew my preseason score out of the water.

Lesson learned: I would much rather run a fitness test than give a speech any day.