Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Livin' the Dream

What happened to July and August??? Life is crazy! The summer flashed right before my eyes. I'm sure you're well aware that Oakcrest is now over. Along with that, life is now over. Okay, maybe that's a little dramatic. But let's be honest, a huge part of me there. Leaving camp was much harder than I expected it to be. I have never felt God's love so powerfully as I did there. I never dreamed I would miss scraping plates, getting dressed in .5 seconds, and not showering. More than anything, I miss the optimism Oakcrest provided in my life. The world is much different to me than it was when I left for camp. Yes, I'm completely awkward now. But that's not what I 'm referring to.

So, rumor has it I'm living the dream. You better believe it!!! I've now been in Provo for three weeks now. At first, I was terrified and feeling lonely. Adjusting to life after Snow College is hard, no matter where you are. Let's face it, Snow is just as good as it gets! But with time I've adjusted to a big school, city life, and moving on without my friends right by my side. Some of my beloved friends have been kind enough to take me in and let me tag along, for which I am incredibly grateful.  I must say, Oakcrest not only blessed my life at camp but continues to help me every day! For one, I am now surrounded by a dozen people from camp who truly help me every single day. They are the greatest friends I could ever ask for. Second, I have been blessed with faith as I face this new life. For some reason, most hard things don't phase me much any more. I know this is where I'm supposed to be. There are opportunities here that I can't wait to find.

 How do I like BYU? Words cannot express the deep love I feel for this place! The dream I've had since I was twelve years old is now a reality. I can feel the Spirit on campus! My teachers can take any subject and relate it to the gospel. My Psych 201 professor is possibly my new hero. He truly challenges us intellectually, and relates the gospel in such a profound and stimulating way. I absolutely love it here. I was able to go to the CES fireside of Elder Oaks, and a BYU devotional given by Elder Anderson. I worried that by being around so many incredible people, I would feel lost and inadequate. Instead, I find it intriguing and it motivates me to be better. Yes, the BYU stereotypes drive me crazy! Certainly, there are people here that fit them. But for the most part, I have met some incredibly sincere and humble people. I've come to realize just how much of it's in our heads. People come here, knowing that "typical BYU student" expectation is set for them. And so they conform to it. It's all about what you look for. What a blessing it is to be in an academic environment that is sponsored by the church. No I'm not engaged. Talking to boys pretty much gives me paralysing anxiety due to Oakcrest. But I'm adjusting! 

It's miracle time! Once upon a time it was the first day of school. I had been having a hard time adjusting to being so far away from the ones I loved. I started to pray for opportunities to make new friends if I made a sincere effort to meet people. I went to the library to do some reading and left feeling bummed with the realization that I was pretty much here alone. As I left the library, I stumbled (quite literally) upon some fellows laying on the sidewalk and grass. Trying to get out of their way, I was asked by two guys if I wanted to join them in nightgames. Feeling sorry for myself, I declined and continued on my way. I heard them from a distance joking about their rejection. I got about 50 yards away when I stopped and felt the need to go play. I realized this was the opportunity I was looking for! However, I still had numerous things to do.  Again, I felt a strong desire to go join them! I turned around and started walking back, and then realized how ridiculous I would look after already walking away. Again, I felt a spiritual kick to the stomach, telling me to go play. After walking back and forth at least three times, looking even more ridiculous, I marched back to the group and told them I changed my mind and wanted to play. Throughout the night, I met some incredibly nice people. One girl came up to me afterward and told me she had just gotten home from a mission and didn't know very many people. We exchanged numbers and have hung out on a few occasions since then. I even joined the facebook group and now go every week! These students are possibly the most friendly and accepting people I've met at BYU. I feel a little piece of Snow College here with me when I'm with them. This group certainly has no idea of the impact they've had on me in the last three weeks, simply by asking a stranger to play with them. God works in mysterious ways. Even through nightgames!!! 

I'm still getting used to so many things here. Callings, roommates, walking 20 minutes to get to class, a class bigger than my high school, and the library (I get lost every time...). But every day comes with the promise of new opportunities and a step toward becoming the person I truly want to become. 

PS - I even got a picture with John Allred and met the guys from Kid History! 

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