I went into this year with bright eyes and my head in the clouds. The adult world was a distant fantasy I had longed for. Moving to College has taught me a lot about myself; stripping me down until I had nothing left to give, while also filling voids I didn’t know existed.
I have tiptoed in dangerous waters and drowned in temptation. After many empty wine bottles and good cries on the floor, scared that my choices would define me (spoiler: they really don’t), I don’t look back in anger, but in acceptance. I have made some mistakes, but at least I tried. I have been able to distinguish what sits well with me and what doesn’t. I am expecting, as I grow further, to make many more errors, and gain a greater understanding of the person I am.
There is no shame in messing up, just as long as it doesn’t put either myself or someone else in danger. Lucky for me, I have really good friends and family who always have my back.
Be it helping me up from the concrete in King George Square after a pretty intense face plant, or making sure I don’t choke on the carrot I am crying into 2 days post-break up, they’ve got me.
I am hard on myself. I expect the best and hate how unobtainable that is. I cry a lot and struggle to find joy some days. I feel lost and unbelievably terrified of what is around the corner. But I need to let go of fear. Because fear is what gets me into these messes in the first place. The fear of not being what I think I have to be.
Learning and growing is a process. Some travel quicker than others, and that’s okay. I’m no less of a person for not knowing what the hell I’m doing at 18. Like truly Sophie, it’s okay. I am no weaker for it, because at least I am putting in the effort one day at a time.
As the University year has now finished, and I sit writing this in my Toowoomba home, I am reflecting with fondness. Despite the hardships and pain that I have seen in others and experienced myself, I know this year served as the biggest learning curve. I might not have come out of it as jubilant as I went in, but I am more aware of the world and what is acceptable behaviour (most of the time). I think that is overall a good outcome. Now it’s time to be brave again. Bring on another year of this mayhem.