Sunday, January 18, 2015

If you could have a conversation with yourself in college, what would you say?

Happiness is a form of courage...The original topic was  If you could have a conversation with yourself in high school, what would you say? but I've been there, done that. High school for me feels so long ago and it's time I leave it in the past. I am grateful for those four years but it's time to reflect on a time more near and dear to my heart: my four years in college. 

College for me wasn't that great. Sure, I had a great on campus job and I met some people that literally changed my life (some for the worst; most for the best) but my favorite part of college is the senior year I'm having right now. Just nine months ago, I moved back home for good from college even though I literally had 15 credits left to complete. And it was a tough seven months, trying to complete my classes from home, financial aid calling every week threatening to take away all my aid if I didn't follow their rules, no job or steady income coming in, and very few solid friends who truly understood what I was going through. Even certain family members were not at all supportive of me. Yet, I just kept my faith in God even though it looked like my circumstances had never been more dire, and this coming from a girl who has been on the brink between life and death. It appeared that God wasn't even there.

I would go to bed some nights and just cry myself to sleep because I didn't know what was going to happen. The devil was lying to me and he was starting to convince me that I would never graduate, I would never get an internship, and my life truly had no purpose. Boy, was he wrong.

If I could go back to that first day I truly remember not knowing what would become of my Saint Leo experience, I sat in the gym listening to Dr. Kirk speak to us during the matriculation ceremony and I was overwhelmed. Here I was just newly eighteen, reserved and quiet with an upbeat attitude toward life, believing that anything was possible. I felt so alone because I was the first in my family to ever leave to go off to college, and I barely knew anyone in my freshmen class. Yet, if I could go back to this day, I wouldn't even let any of the things that tried to break me during those four long years even cause me to sweat. This is why:

Fall semester has come and gone and I finished out the semester with a 3.3 GPA. I got all my credits.
Now that spring semester is up and running, I can't believe that I get to wake up every day and do what I do. This week for example was uber exciting. It started out with me filming a spot for a tv infomercial for HSN. No word yet if my part will even be used but still...never in a million years would I have thought God would take one innocent headshot taken at the end of that first acting workshop and shine favor on it so that I would be chosen for this opportunity. 

I even remember that first acting workshop like it was yesterday. I was all dressed in my business clothes thinking I was going there to be a stage hand but instead was told by my boss that I would be participating as well. I was sick. I only got less than fours of sleep the night before, I had only eaten one egg and a piece of toast, with five sips of coffee. I was so sleepy and out of it that it felt like a dream. It became even more of good dream when two guys walked in who were around my age. One even mentioned he was being recruited by Saint Leo for their baseball team. They were both cute and friendly and I instantly felt a little less nervous. Later a third guy joined the class who was a little bit older but definitely very good at improv acting and each time I worked with each of the guys they made my nerves go away because they made me feel at home even thought inside my head, all I really wanted was to hurry up and get the heck out of there. I was so tempted to just go in the bathroom and not come out.

My only experience with acting have been very amateur. I took a year of drama in high school during my senior year and on the last day of the class, I was given the "Big Talker" award because I never spoke in that class unless I was forced to. Now, here I was, forced to act again but this time, it felt more low-key. The second class, although with a bigger crowd, was easier to complete just because I knew what would be expected of me. ( I watched Whose Line is It Anyway the night before to prepare), and after the first improv exercise in front of the class, my heart was pounding in my ears. Yet, instead of making me panic, it made me feel even more alive. I realized what was happening. I was slowly overcoming my fear of public speaking and I was so grateful to God for this small beginning toward my GREAT big destiny.

Monday and Tuesday of this week, I wrote a cumulative 921 words of a new chapter for my upcoming memoir. Before getting started writing on Monday, I was a little nervous because I hadn't written a new chapter in two months. Would that hinder me? I thought to myself. Once I opened my notebook and my pen hit the paper, it was like I never had taken a two month break due to a writer's block and editing session of the first 61,000 plus words. The words poured out of me much like sweat on a runner or tears from a bride as she walks down the aisle toward her husband. It was like talking to an old friend and realizing nothing has changed between you. It was familiar and breath-taking and I couldn't thank God enough for the beauty he's graced my life with in place of the ashes.♥

Tuesday evening, I received an email that literally knocked my socks off. It was to schedule a job interview for a job I had applied for in October. It's a part-time job that I know I would be perfect for, and the interview was scheduled for Friday morning. God is so good!

Thurday, I had a phone conversation with my advisor to go over what would be expected of me for the twelve credit internship that I am registered for. After a semester without communicating, I was surprised to find that he was happy for me with the progress I've made since April. After this is completed, I officially receive my degree. It left me nearly in awe once again of how amazing God is and how he works.♥

Friday, I had my interview at the job site for the part-time job that I would literally LOVE to have, and I felt positive about it. Yet, I won't hear for another two weeks if I get it. Then, at two o'clock the same day, I had a phone interview with another PR firm out of Los Angeles that I will officially be blogging for. More information to come on that soon!♥

After Friday, I could not believe how God has turned my whole life upside down. A complete 360. What was once a merry go-round now became a ferris wheel of beauty, wonder, and destiny.♥

Yet, through this whole thing, I wake up every day now and smile. I no longer suffer symptoms of depression. The joy of the Lord truly is my strength. Yet, in the midst of all these blessings, I see that life is now just a constant cycle of hurry up and wait which is why the Bible says, "We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised." (Hebrews 6:12)♥ 

Faith and patience work together. All I had to do back in May was simply TRUST in God.♥

For anyone struggling to find out if it's even worth it to not give up, to live another day, to breathe another breathe, let me give you some words of encouragement: (Courtesy of Joel Osteen).

"In punctuation, an exclamation point is simply a question mark straightened out. If you want God to take your question marks, the things you don't understand, and turn them into exclamation points, you have to trust him....Anytime it looks like everything is dying in your life, something is coming to life. It may look like the end BUT this is a new beginning."♥

2 Corinthians 4:8,9 says: "We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed."♥

So if I were to go back in time and have a conversation with that Not a girl not yet a woman version of myself, I would tell her this: It really is all going to be worth it. And even if there are days that make you doubt it, YOU matter. Now go get'em girl. Go change the world.♥

Until next time, "You're not buried; you're planted. God is going to bring you through."-Joel Osteen.

Love Times Infinity,
God Bless!
~Just Keep Swimming~


  1. Chelsea, I'm happy for you! Imagine getting paid for something you really enjoy doing.

    College was tough for me too. But well, I surpassed it.

    Wish you all the best as always.

  2. Thanks Lux! :) I guess college is tougher for people like us because we don't always like to abide by society's rules but instead like dark horses, we dare to break down barriers.
    P.S. I'm so excited about all that I'm currently working on now. Thank you!


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