I am so overwhelmed by that amount of love and support I have received during graduation. And I know people use the term "overwhelmed" as a common figure of speech but when I say I have been overwhelmed, I have been. Because after all the graduation ceremonies I came home, sat on my bed, and started to cry.
And I'm not crying because I'm sad or scared that I've graduated and that college is over. I'm crying because never before have I felt so much love and support from those who mean the absolute most to me. Don't get me wrong I have definitely felt their love and support in the past but never to this immensity.
Quite frankly I thought I was going to graduate alone. Yes, I know plenty of others who are graduating as well and I have plenty of friends in the business school. But out of all my closest friends here in Provo I am the only one taking this step this April.
But the Lord has been more than mindful of this fear I've had in my head. Graduating alone is the farthest thing that has happened. Madie was able to walk on the Marriott floor with me during commencement, my family was able to sit front row during the ceremonies, I was surrounded by rec. management friends and professors, and blessed to have J. by my side. Over and over again the Lord sent many sweet tender mercies and I can't help but express my genuine gratitude for all of those who have been apart of my big weekend.
I think I like to maintain this perception of strength and self-reliance. But I'm learning that sometimes it is tiring and sometimes you need to let go and let others in. And when you let go of that self-independency you see just how many people who are there for you and want to be apart of your life. I guess I just get scared because there have been times where I have reached out only to be shut down.
As I look over my college experience I can truly say I have indeed experienced it all. I've lived on campus, in an apartment complex, a townhouse, and finally an actual home. I've danced on two university companies, I've been in student leadership, I've gone through the business school, gone on a study abroad, and had multiple internships... But all at the same time I've had my hard years. I've struggled to make friends, struggled with acceptance, struggled with an eating disorder, struggled with comparison... I've had those moments and feelings of absolute aloneness when all you know what to do and can do is fall to your knees and pray.
But amidst it all I have been resilient. I haven't given up and I have been a fighter.
I've come to this conclusion that life is like one big jigsaw puzzle. When we came to Earth we committed ourselves to finding the scattered pieces to our puzzle. It can be frustrating when a puzzle piece we find doesn't fit, and that is why we have to trust He who understand the bigger picture.
So during this moment of conclusion, as this portion of my jigsaw puzzle is complete, I am overwhelmed with the love, support, and recognition from all of those people who have been puzzle pieces in my life. Those who have been collected over the years and come together to recognize me and make me feel special.
I know my friends and family are proud of me.
And I'm proud of myself too.
So BYU, I've absolutely loved you. You have shaped, molded, and pushed me into the person I am. I am so grateful for all the people who you have brought into my life and the course my life has taken. Coming to BYU was the last thing I expected but greatest thing that has happened.
To read a recap of my year by year, click here.