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I overcame the fear of uncertainty.

Joined: 5/6/2011
Posts: 2
When I went off to college, (unbeknownst to me) my head was filled to the brim with hundreds of misconceptions that had been burned into my skull by my friends, parents, and teachers. They all meant well, but their kind words were half-truths and clichéd stereotypes, and so when I got to the University of Pittsburgh I wasn’t as prepared as I thought that I was going to be. That being said, I don’t think you can ever be 100% prepared for college. Every school is different and every student’s experience is unique. I guess my point is that the most important lesson I learned after my first year of college is that instead of trying to prepare for every possible situation, for every “unknown”, I should embrace the uncertainty. I’ll expand.
I’ve always been a planner. I’ve had a daily scheduler at arms length since I was nine. I knew where I would be, when I would be there, and what I would be doing at least 80% of my life. I took comfort in knowing as much as possible about what was next. Of course, college life changed all of this. And it began with the laundry. (This is the part where I am forced to admit that I was babied throughout the my previous 18 years of life and my mother did my laundry up until I left for college.) Who knew that the detergent goes at the bottom of the washer? Not me. Needless to say, I had no choice but to throw away multiple items of clothing because of all the blue Tide stains.
I had always been the type of girl who knew what she was doing. Yet there I was staring down into the trashcan at the evidence of my failed laundry attempt. Sadly, this was just the beginning. Later on I battled everything from food poisoning to finals week. I had never been sick without having my parents there to take care of me and I had never pulled several all-nighters in a row. I was faced with so many different situations that no one had told me about before I left. It was annoying; it was frustrating…but I learned. I learned that when I have food-poisoning, I just need to let it run its course. And I learned that staying up all night to study isn’t going to do me much good if the next day I am too tired to read the questions on the exam.
I overcame many things during my first year of college and most of those obstacles can be grouped into the category of uncertainty. The most ironic part? It’s a never-ending cycle, because at any point in life I’ll never truly know what’s around the corner. In reality, I can’t always be ready for everything. But instead of fearing this actuality, I welcome it with open arms.
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Comment by mcoly618

Joined: 5/2/2009
Posts: 472
Hi, I'm the PR Coordinator for Stage of Life. I'm leaving you this comment to let you know that your essay for our Teens and Overcoming Challenges writing contest was one of the finalists. Congratulations!

Here's the link to the contest summary page. We'll be formally announcing the winner soon.

Feel free to share this news with your friends and family. To be named an essay finalists in our national writing competition is a big deal. Our previous winners have been talked about on and other media outlets.

Congrats again. We look forward to seeing more of your essays/writing on Thanks for helping us in our mission of creating the world's largest pool of cross-generational stories.
Posted: Monday, June 6, 2011 6:45:14 PM
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