When I came home to Philadelphia this summer, my sister insisted that I really needed to re-decorate my room, since it’s basically been the same since I was in 8th or 9thgrade. Since the room really hadn’t been changed much while I’ve been at Hopkins for the past three years, it always reminded me of my high school self. Suddenly, now that Alex has almost completed this decorating endeavor, the room no longer has that feeling. So many elements have been replaced with things that pertain much more to my college life. The teddy bear in my bookcase has been replaced with a Spring Fair mug and a duck that says Phi Mu on it. The pictures from a vacation on the wall were replaced with a Spanish flag I bought while I studied abroad. On my bed is the giant stuffed microbe pillow that two of my friends got me for Christmas freshman year. I have way more books than I used to have, and some are in Spanish and German. Instead of an Obama ’08 poster, there is a Real Madrid scarf. Instead of my old greenish-blue bedspread, my new one very much resembles the one that I used freshman and sophomore years in AMR I and Charles Commons.
While I agree with Alex that my room was a little overdue for a make-over, I’m starting to realize now that a lot of my high school things are gone how much has changed in the past three years. Looking back, I’ve made countless new friends, almost completed two majors, acquired new interests, and traveled to five new countries. I’m not sure what part of that has changed me, or whether it was something else entirely, but regardless, it’s scary how fast time can pass. One moment you may think that you know yourself pretty well. You may think that you have things all figured out, and in what seems like the blink of an eye, your plans change. You change.
I think after I took the LSAT last Monday, the fact that this is my last summer of college finally hit me – I’m suddenly filling out applications and constantly thinking about where and how I’m going to spend the next few years of my life. I know I’ll get things figured out, and I know I’ll end up in the right place, but at the moment, making future plans is a pretty daunting process. I was never quite this concerned with the thought of graduating from high school and going to college, but thinking about having to leave Baltimore in May and moving on to something that four years ago I never thought I would be doing is a little bit terrifying.
It really does feel like I just sent in my application to Johns Hopkins yesterday. I can’t believe that since that day back in fall 2008, I’ve been through three-quarters of my undergraduate career at this university. I’ve taken classes I never in a million years thought I would take, I’ve met friends from all over the world, and I’ve been through some of the happiest and hardest times of my almost 21 year old life. Senior year totally crept up on me, and in two months I’ll be entering my last fall semester at Hopkins in full force with law school applications and/or job applications also on my mind.
If there’s anything I’ve learned at Hopkins, it’s that your plans shouldn’t be too set in stone before they actually happen. You as a person change faster than you may think you will, and you should let that change happen instead of constraining yourself to what you feel your interests are or what you want them to be. My goal for senior year is to keep this in mind, to not get too preoccupied about this whole process, and to accept wherever life takes me.