Senior Struggle #7: Rejection Can Be Good

I hope that I can remember this every time I face rejection in my life!

Happy Tuesday, readers. Only a few more days until Easter Break – I know you all can push through!

Something that has been on my mind a lot this semester is what to do this summer. It’s on everyone else’s mind too, but especially seniors as graduation is just around the corner. Fortunately, I know what I’m doing this summer so a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders, but for many people, there is still the looming uncertainty that summer will bring.

“Will I move home after graduation?”

“When will I hear back from that job that I applied for and really want?”

“When will I know what I’m doing with my life?”

These are just a few stressful questions that I’m sure everyone has been asking themselves, especially seniors. In lieu of these questions, I want to focus on rejection and how it doesn’t always have to be a bad thing.

People see rejection in their lives mainly by not getting jobs, internships, or acceptance into student groups. Those are the most visible ways rejection rears its head, but there is also rejection in relationships, friendships, and other areas of your life. Getting turned down for a date, being overlooked or losing touch within a friendship, or getting a poor grade after working hard on your homework are other ways that rejection is poignant in life. I’ve experienced all of these types of rejection, and although the rejection stings, in many ways I’m happy the rejection happened.

If it weren’t for the different types of rejection I’ve been through, namely rejection from internships and employers, I wouldn’t be where I am today. It’s hard sometimes to see the good that comes out of rejection in the moment, but that bad grade or the denial of entry from that student group could open up your schedule for something that you want to live into.

It’s may be hard to see now, but rejection can be beneficial. I hope everyone is able to see that as graduation nears and summer worries start to pile up.

Until next time!

Senior Struggle #6: It’s OK to Want an End

As I get ready to graduate, I have to keep this saying in mind!

Hello, readers! I hope your week is going well so far! We have five weeks of school left, and those weeks are flying by! The time passing quickly is sad as I realize that my final year of college is coming to a close, but at the same time, I’m happy that it will be done soon and I will be able to start a new chapter of my life.

Throughout this second semester, I’ve felt that it hasn’t been okay to feel that I wanted college to be over. College is supposed to be the best four years of your life, right? While these years have been amazing, I feel like there is a reason that college is only four years: because at this point, I’m supposed to grow up. I’ve outgrown communal living where I have to share a bathroom (even though I’m living with my best friends), I’ve outgrown classwork, even though I know I’m learning a lot in my classes, and I’ve especially outgrown the feeling that I have to do everything and be busy to be the best version of myself.

I’m ready for independence. Hope has prepared me well to use the skills I’ve learned in class for internships and jobs. I’m ready to live into things I’m passionate about and I’m ready to say no to things that are a source of stress. I’m ready for my own space; I’m ready to find out who my close friends are, and I’m ready for a new chapter of my life to begin.

For a long time I thought that this readiness wasn’t normal and that I was being selfish because I wanted to move on from college. I would suppress these feelings and try to be sentimental when people asked me if I was ready to graduate. “No way!” I’d say, “I want to stay here forever!” But that wasn’t true!

Although Hope has given me skills and memories that I’m thankful for, I don’t think this feeling of wanting to move on is bad for me. It’s one I’ve definitely had to come to terms with, but I think every senior has been or is going through the struggle of feeling like they want to stay and go at the same time. What’s important is knowing what these feelings mean for you individually, and how they affect you.

Whether you’re a freshman or a senior and these last weeks come and go, enjoy the time you have left at Hope, but also be at peace with what you’re feeling. Until next time!

10-Day Forecast: Studying With a Chance of Snow

Christmas is just over 2 weeks away, snow is in the forecast for the next week, and final exams begin in a few days.

I’m sitting with my housemates as we divide our attention between Hairspray Live and the homework that needs to be done. I have two exams and a research presentation on Monday, my last exam Wednesday, and then I’m done.

Over the next week, in addition to finishing off the semester, I need to pack up all my things, say, “see you later” to all my friends, and leave campus until next Fall.

While I’m excited for the adventures that await me in Rome, for now I’m not looking forward to goodbyes and getting nervous about the transition to an entirely different culture.

This semester I had the opportunity to work as an RA with Hope’s Residential Life, something I’ve had hopes of doing since freshman year that I’ve enjoyed very much. It introduced me to a team of new people on Hope’s campus and helped me really focus in on how I can better serve those around me.

I have been able to live with some of my closest friends. The laughter, homework help, tears, holiday decorating, stories, movie nights, and so much more have filled this semester with so many good times.

I am looking forward to the ways my experiences abroad will help me grow. And I am thankful that I have another year here at Hope to continue to process what I learn next semester and keep working toward finding a place for my next steps after graduation. All alongside the people I met two and a half years ago that became friends who are more like family that made Hope more like home

Thanks for reading,

I Have a Coffee Dependence and I’m Not Proud

This blog post is about to be majorly overdramatic.

It all started when I was just a wee young lass. My grandma is a big coffee drinker and my grandpa loved his gas station cappuccinos. They live across town from the house I grew up in, and they’re totally the kind of grandparents who love to give their grandkids “treats.” I’m pretty sure we were all raised on caffeine. I’m serious, my brother was drinking black coffee at four years old. Recently I’ve started wondering how much taller he would be if that hadn’t happened. He would probably be in the NBA and/or a really good men’s volleyball player.

In junior high I started discovering the wonder of Starbucks Frappuccinos on youth group trips. In high school, the same brother introduced me to the campfire mocha from Caribou Coffee (I will love you forever, Caribou). I took a Keurig with me to college but only used it when I wanted coffee, not because I felt like I needed it to stay awake or function well (HOWEVER, Dr. Pepper was a different story – it is free with every meal in Phelps Dining Hall and I gave it up for Lent my freshman year, gave myself caffeine withdrawal migraines, and had to compensate with coffee).

Junior year is when things started to change. My friend Sarah and I discovered that the best time for us to do homework is early in the morning – And the best place to do it was at Lemonjello’s. Of course, we couldn’t just sit in LJ’s at 6:30 every morning and not buy anything (for more reasons than one) – I quickly realized that my morning cups of coffee were super beneficial in getting my homework done.

But really, the blame falls almost completely onto the shoulders of my friend Niall. He was my co-program director for day camp at Covenant Harbor this summer. The guy used to work at Starbucks. He orders everything with an extra shot of espresso and knows exactly how to make it taste really, really good. I brought a car to camp this summer and he did not, which means that any time he wanted coffee that wasn’t from camp (which was pretty much every day since coffee and camp are not exactly the best mix), I had to drive him to Starbucks, ergo I ended up ordering stuff there almost every day too. I quickly made the jump down from cold brew to iced coffee (so much cheaper) and then up from iced coffee to iced Americanos (almost as cheap and way more effective). I was drinking a cup of camp coffee in the morning, an Americano later in the morning (sometimes with a refill), and sometimes more coffee in the afternoon. Bad. Helpful in my tiring job, but bad.

This semester, I haven’t needed coffee to function like I did over the past year. There was one day that I didn’t drink it at all, and the next day I had a horrible migraine all day until I pumped myself up with enough caffeine to replace what I had skipped the day before. That’s when I realized the crazy coffee consumption was an actual problem. I don’t want to depend on coffee in order to be a functioning human. I went back to drinking a moderate amount of coffee every day in order to prevent myself from getting any more migraines, but the back of my head was like, “But should I actually…”

This week, I decided I don’t want coffee to rule my life anymore. Two days ago, I didn’t drink any coffee at all. Yesterday and today I’ve had a cup of decaf. I’ve heard it takes three days to stop the withdrawal headaches and I’m determined that I’m going to do it. I’m really not sure why I picked right now; I think I just figured I might as well. I’ll still drink coffee occasionally just because I like it, but I do not want to depend upon it anymore.

It’s a whole new world! I can be a functioning human without caffeine!

Thanks for reading! Make sure to keep up with me on Twitter and in my Etsy shop.

“Praise the Eternal, all nations.
    Raise your voices, all people.
For His unfailing love is great, and it is intended for us,
    and His faithfulness to His promises knows no end.
Praise the Eternal!”

—Psalm 117

Your “Back to Hope” Playlist

Over the summer I got to thinking about Hope blogging. I felt as if every year I wrote the same posts: back to school, the Pull, Winter Fantasia, Nykerk, SAC events, etc.

This year, I’m vowing to make more unconventional and creative posts. My first is this one, a playlist perfected for that perfect back to Hope College feel. These are songs that I hear around campus, give me a special Hope vibe, or are always played at any Hope social event.

I’m starting junior year off with some feel good tunes, and now you can too! Listen to it on Spotify or follow the list of songs below.

  • I Wanna Dance with Somebody – Whitney Houston
  • Brand New – Ben Rector
  • More Like Love – Ben Rector
  • I Lived – One Republic
  • Shut Up and Dance – WALK THE MOON
  • Hold My Hand – Jess Glynne
  • Wake Me up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
  • Let the Good Times Roll – Ben Rector
  • Love on Top – Beyonce
  • Put Your Records On – Corinne Bailey Rae
  • Easy Love – Original Mix – Sigala
  • I’ll Be There For You – The Rembrandts
  • Where You Lead – Carole King
  • Classic – MKTO
  • Home – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
  • Send Me On My Way – Rusted Root
  • Downtown – Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
  • I Want You Back – The Jackson 5
  • Yeah! – Usher
  • Where Is The Love – The Black Eyed Peas
  • Good To Be Alive (Hallelujah) – Andy Grammar
  • Rather Be (feat. Jess Glynne) – Clean Bandit
  • Bright – Echosmith
  • Best Day of My Life – American Authors
  • I Really Like You – Carly Rae Jepsen
  • Geronimo – Sheppard
  • Walking on Sunshine – Katrina & The Waves
  • When Can I See You Again – Owl City

These are all songs that get me pumped to be back at Hope. I hope you enjoy listening to some of them!


What Are the Chances of One Making a Career in the NHL?

In the recognition of the start of the 2016 NHL playoffs, which is highly popular on Hope College’s campus, since the Red Wings made it to the playoffs 25th in the row, here are the mathematical odds of one actually making it to the NHL.

Every parent of a hockey player likes the idea of their kid playing in the NHL or how hockey players say “in the show.” Hockey is one of the hardest sports to master because body is doing a lot of different movements at once. But what are the odds of making it to the “show”?

They made the 0.02% cut.
They made the 0.02% cut.

The study is focuses only on Ontario, Canada, but we can apply it to the general hockey audience. In the study were 30,000 players. Out of all 30,000 players in Ontario, only 48 were drafted, which is 0.16%.

Out of the 48 players who got picked by some NHL team only 39 got signed to entry-level contracts. This means that players sign for example 2-year, $750,000 contract, but they get the money only if they play certain amount of games in the NHL. So if one get drafted, the chances are 81.25% that one will get signed, not played in the NHL.

But only 15 out of 48 players actually make carrier in the NHL. When I say career, I many 400+ games played in the NHL, which gives us percentage of 0.02%.

So the chances of making a career (400+ games) in the NHL are 0.02%.

Cornelius, Emily. “How Hard Is It to Make It to the NHL?” The Huffington Post., 11 Sept. 2014. Web. 14 Apr. 2016.

The Seven Wonders of Someone Halfway Done With College

I often find myself wishing that time would stop, or at the very least that things would shift into slow motion for at least a week or maybe five minutes.

When they say that your time in college flies by fast, they aren’t lying.

It’s scary yet exciting to know that in the same amount of time that I have already spent at Hope, I will be leaving and venturing off into the real world.

Here are seven things I wonder as I think about leaving Hope in two years:

  1. What’s the real world really like?
    • Let’s be honest, we all wonder this.
  2. Are there other places like Hope?
    • I like the welcoming and supportive atmosphere that Hope has, but will I be able to find that somewhere else?
  3. Will I find the same faith community?
    • This is one of my biggest worries about leaving Hope. I’ll have to venture out and find a faith community, perhaps even create one, instead of having one built and placed right in my lap.
  4. Will my best friends stay my best friends?
    • I’m really crossing my fingers for this one. I know some pretty great people here and I hope they’re my friends for life.
  5. Where will I live?
    • Will I go back home? Will I make somewhere new my home? The world may never know. Until I graduate.
  6. What will my job be?
    • Really though. I have my plans but the more I talk to alumni, the more I realize that you often don’t end up doing what you thought you would.
  7. Can I just stay here a little bit longer?
    • The answer is, yes, you can stay here two more years. Maybe it’ll be enough, but right now I love Hope and wouldn’t trade it for any other place.

I’m sure that incoming freshmen and graduating seniors are also wondering some of these things. Being a sophomore in the middle of it all can make the end seem blind, like it’s never coming. But it is and I have so many thoughts about it.

Thanks for reading,