Today, it hit me how far I’ve come since high school. It’s funny to think back to my days before Cedarville and remember how independent I thought I was. Back then, I used to think it was a big deal to go out to a party by yourself and stay up past midnight. This is a far cry from my current bedtime of 1:30 or later each night. Like I always say, everything is relative but the truth and this is no exception.
One of the biggest changes I’ve noticed is in time spent traveling. In high school, to go someplace an hour away felt like forever. I remember going somewhere an hour away and thinking it was a long distance in a car. Now that I’ve made the ten-hour trip out to Cedarville multiple times, that hour in a car feels like you just drove around the block. Even tonight, I made the hour trip into Columbus for a friend’s birthday. In high school, I would never imagine driving somewhere an hour away on a school night. Last year, I made the trip over to Indianapolis on a school night. That involved four hours of driving in one night. Never would I have thought I would drive that much on a night when I had class the next day.
To think what I’ve accomplished since high school astounds me. To attend college over 600 miles away and go on trips with friends to over a dozen states has been amazing. This past summer, I completed an internship and took classes out in Washington, D.C. For two months, I lived on my own. I had to cook, clean, grocery shop, travel, and do a lot of other things by myself. This was an amazing experience in which I felt what it was like to be completely independent.
I feel that through my experiences this summer and my time at Cedarville that I am slowly weaning myself away from my dependency on my parents. Let me clarify that in no way am I saying that I don’t need my parents. Trust me, I rely on them for a lot of things, but I do feel that I am becoming more independent. By the time I came back to school this fall, I had only spent 55 days at home in the past year. That’s the least amount of time at home in a year that I’ve ever spent. Depending on when I start my job following graduation, this number could be even lower this year.
The next big adventure for me is the trip that we are planning for Spring Break. Some friends and I are planning to go on a cruise to the Bahamas. While this doesn’t sound like that much planning, the cruise leaves from Miami and we have to arrange travel and sleeping arrangements on the way down and back. I enjoy challenging myself to plan something extraordinary and I know that if everything comes together, it will be one of the best trips I’ve ever been on.
Though I’m trying to become more independent and prove that I can do things on my own, I must always remember to appreciate my parents and not be afraid to use their assistance. They are here to help me and they want to be there for me. They have taught me the basic principles of life, but there is still a lot that I need to learn before I’m ready to live completely on my own. Even after I graduate and start my career, I need to listen to them for they are far wiser than I am. As Proverbs 1:8 says, “Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction, and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.”