by Alex Hentschel
“When I was a freshman, I talked like a freshman. Then I became an upperclassman, and I put aside my freshman ways.” — Cedarville Proverbs
Welcome to college. Time to forget everything about your old life and who you used to be.
It might sound like an exaggeration, but it’s actually crazy how you’re about to build a whole new identity for yourself with a group of people that you’ve never met before. It’s time to find out who you are. You’re like Ty from Extreme Home Makeover — “moving the bus” on your new self. (That was really bad, but I needed a metaphor that would universally apply to all Christians.)
Here’s something that you just have to accept: your freshman year is going to be awkward. Think of it as a trial period — a time where you can make mistakes and nobody judges you. You’ll have pictures of yourself from the Rip with whipped cream on your face in a shopping cart and you’ll just say, “I was a freshman, I don’t know.”
Actually, you probably don’t even know what the Rip is. Never mind.
College is going to speed by, and to be honest, you’re not going to remember a lot of what you learned in Earth Science. You will remember your friends. You won’t remember what each individual chapel was about, but you’ll see yourself changing, inside and out. You won’t remember what your dorm room looked like, but you will remember the time you brought back Bill’s donuts one minute before curfew and then dropped them all over the stairs. (Did this happen to me? I don’t know. You don’t know. Nobody knows.)
Savor every moment, if you can, and accept that this year will fundamentally change who you are. I don’t recognize myself at all — I’ve cycled through three pairs of glasses, cut a foot off my hair and learned Spanish. You will gain confidence, and at the same time learn that you don’t know anything about the world at all. You’ll start to narrow your interests and broaden your horizons.
This is the free trial on your life. You can try out different versions of yourself before you go out into the real world and get ready to play. Pierce your nose and go through your grunge phase now — you can’t do it again.
Accept that you know nothing at all and be ready to know nothing at all for the rest of your life. All adults are faking it.
Some of us are just better at faking it than others.
Alexandria Hentschel is a sophomore International Studies and Spanish double major and the Off-Campus news editor for Cedars. She enjoys old books, strong coffee, and honest debate.