A lot has been weighing on my mind as of recently, and I’m not exactly sure how to go about it. Is college supposed to be about finding yourself? I mean I thought I did a great job on doing that in high school; looking back on it, I’m realizing how different a year truly makes.
1. Outgrowing friends. In high school, I found my clique. Attending an all-girls school, I was so relieved to have found a group of girls with the same mindset as me. We spent our four years together in a close-knit group, and I was so positive this would continue in college. Now a year has passed since high school graduation, and I can’t help but feel weary. An entire summer has passed, and I have yet to see a few friends in my group. Granted, we are a slightly bigger clique than most, but I can’t help but feel like I am distancing myself away from them. A year of college has truly felt like a lifetime, and I can’t believe how different everything seems to be. No longer am I the bubbly, naive girl with no care in the world for what other people thought of me. Rather, I have marched into the adult world: a world full of business suits and briefcases and internships. Surprisingly, I have realized that my confidence has diminished tenfold. I have no idea how that happened as most people would assume the opposite effect to take place. My theory is that being in a private school really limited my reality. I was sheltered and oblivious… not to say that everyone who goes to private school is like that. Being me, I most likely refused to see past what I already knew.
2. Miracles. My father got into a minor fender bender today. The damage wasn’t too bad, but it was enough for the bumper to shift from its usual position. My dad only suffered from minor back discomfort, but I can’t help but worry that it could have been so much worse. Yesterday, I was driving my dad’s car all day, and in retrospect, it is so odd that an accident was all I was thinking about as I was driving his car. I was imagining the scenarios if I were to end up in an accident. the thought of that truly scares me. I am truly in awe of how God works in our lives. All I know is that He was really thinking of me today.
3. Where is my empathy?
Tonight, I went out with one of my best friends from high school. We went to the drive through Checkers in my home city. For y’all who live in urban neighborhoods, you have probably experienced the a good extent of the poverty happening in your city right in front of you. That being said, it was not a surprise to see a woman there who was going from car to car, asking for money. My first instinct was to tell my friend to roll up her window as fast as she could, as if the woman was planning to grab my friend and hurt her. As the woman approached the car window, my friend promised the woman that we would give her change when we went up to the fast food window. Unbeknownst to the homeless woman, I paid with my card. No, I didn’t intentionally do this-I really didn’t have cash-but it was starting to make me feel more and more crappy about myself. As soon as we got our food, my friend pulled out of the drive through. We loudly heard the cashier yelling to us that I did not take my card back. I don’t know what possessed me to do it, but I ran out of the car and to the window. I grabbed my card, and seeing the homeless woman run toward me in my peripheral vision, I sprinted back to my friend’s car and shut the door with a sense of urgency.
Right now, I only have one image in my mind. I remember her face when I turned around to stare at her through the back window of the car. She was smiling, but her eyes told me she knew. She knew that I, like a lot of other people, had preconceived notions about her and people who were in a similar position. She knew that by running, I put myself in a weak mentality of acting like I was superior to her. Acting as if she did not deserve my time. Acting as if she was crazy. And suddenly I felt ashamed. Heat passed through me because I was humiliated by my actions. I really acted as if she had a contagious disease, and suddenly I was wondering what happened to me?! How could I want to change the world and reduce the poverty in the streets when I was SCARED of those who were living the reality of it. And anyone can argue that it is impossible for me to give money to every single homeless person I see, but the truth is that I cannot stand for a cause if I do not push myself to make someone else’s life a little bit easier.
Really. I am going to attempt to give back. Just because I want to enter the business sector does not mean that I have to conform to the stereotype of a hard ass business woman who gives no care for the world around her. After all, if there is one this I want to prove to people, it is this: Hell yeah, I’m a woman, and I want to change the world. And I need to start with the way I talk and act in front of others who have nothing to offer me right this minute. Because God works in mysterious ways. No good deed goes unrewarded or unseen.