This month, I had the honor of contributing to a post-grad blog series for Alpha Omicron Pi! Link to original: A Piece of the Pi: Guest Blog: The Post-Collegiate Perspective I am a proud recent college graduate, who made the … Continue reading
I turned 23 this month, which means my days of rocking out to Taylor Swift’s 22 are (kind of – sort of – not really) over. I decided to not focus on making my birth ‘day’ such a big deal, and instead focus on celebrating another year of life. On a side note, my birthday was wonderfully spent having breakfast and dinner with Matt, and spending the day at the job I love.
Here are 22 life moments that happened during my 22nd year. This is what 22 felt like.
1. I stayed involved
Piggy-backing off my Senior with No Senioritis post, I was very, very involved my senior year in college. I was Vice President of Communications for my sorority, a USF Ambassador, a Her Campus USF writer (& look at me now!), among maintaining a 3.54 GPA. I don’t take any of my busy days for granted, and I honestly miss running around campus – sometimes literally – with a packed agenda.
2. And had two awesome on-campus jobs
I was blessed to end my college experience with two very rewarding jobs. One was as the Community Manager (role of on RA) to my sorority house. Living in my own, FREE, room in the house was a dream — but came with many responsibilities. It actually caused me a lot of stress, but mainly because I care so much about my organization I put 110% into everything from a taco night to fire, health & safety checks. I also worked as the Marketing Assistant for Wellness USF. I met & worked so many amazing people who were powerhouses of passion. Promoting USF services & events + being healthy – win/win!
3. I graduated college
This year I graduated from the University of South Florida Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Mass Communications – Public Relations and minor in Leadership Studies. I am a proud alumna of my university, with a lifetime membership to prove it!
4. I became an alumna of Alpha Omicron Pi
With that, I also became an alumna of my sorority, Alpha Omicron Pi. I have made a promise to remain loyal to my fraternity, and will forever do that. ALAM ❤ Can’t wait to get more involved with the Boston Alumnae Chapter!
5. I was recognized for good works
I am not one to boast about awards, but they did play a big role in my 22nd year. I spoke at the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors Annual Meeting with Ginny Carroll from Circle of Sisterhood, received the AOII Shannon Walsh award from my chapter, and also received a Legacy Award from the Office of Fraternity & Sorority Life. #blessed
6. I completed a year (and counting!) with a man that I love.
Matt & I are happily approaching our 2nd year (on Jan. 11!) and I am so thankful for him. He is my best friend and has been there for all my ups and downs. So glad we’re on this Boston journey together!
7. I stayed home
Many graduates fear moving back home after graduation. However, moving home for 3 months this summer was the best decision I could have made in May. Family rules.
8. I went back to summer camp
I will never forget summer 2014! Going back to being a counselor at Next Stop Broadway was a dream. I had the perfect summer with lifelong friends and good vibes. Love my NSB fam, always!
9. I got a job!
OBVIOUSLY a huge deal in my 22nd year! I graduated in May and worked hard to land a job by June! It is clear to see that I am incredibly happy at Her Campus Media.
10. I moved to a new state
I am in love with Florida, and I realize how much after I moved. BUT, Boston is so wonderful and I never regret the move. I am so excited for seasons (wish me luck in winter), and a plethora of good times ahead.
11. I never took family for granted
Every year that I get older, I get more attached to my family. I love how much you begin to understand them, and also how much they are always right.
12. I made new friends
Shoutout to all the new friends I made this year! Some are back in Florida and a good majority are here in Boston! Cue Michael Buble’s “Just Haven’t Met You Yet” as an ode to all the friends I will make while 23.
13. . . . And kept old friends
Having friends who were still your friend during that most awkward stage of life are true. My lifelong friends know who they are and I am so happy I got to see most of you this summer! Love you always. Thanks for the best #tbt photos.
14. I balanced being healthy + treating myself
I am a true #foodie and am an advocate for eating what you want. I’ve been too focused on strict diets in past years, and this year I feel that I did a solid job of finding a balance. Work Hard, *GO OUT TO EAT* Hard!
15. I was reminded that every day is a gift
Unfortunately, there have been to many lives cut short this past year. I know that is true in so many of our lives. Two beautiful girls from my high school were killed by a wrong-way driver, and so were 4 amazing fraternity men from USF not much longer. This is not okay. Don’t ever take a day for granted. Also, don’t drink and drive — it’s really not cool.
16. I moved in to my own apartment and I pay my own rent
I lived on campus all 4 years of college. With that, it is so exciting being in my first apartment! Paying my first bills were exciting . . . until I looked at my bank statement. Also, the goal of making your room look like an IKEA showroom is very addicting.
17. I got stressed out
Being involved, job searching, interviewing, etc. certainly created a lot of stress in my 22nd year! I had Matt by my side continuously telling me, “Babe, everything always works out.” He is always right when he says that, and I will aim for significantly less stress this year!
18. And I stopped letting stress get in the way (successful work in progress)
I have a great life to live, and these past few months have really inspired me to remember that. At least stressed spelled backwards is desserts . . .
19. I said thank you
It would be awesome if I could find out exactly how many times I said thank you this year, since I had so much to be thankful for! It is so important to spread that little act of kindness.
20. I made unforgettable memories
From staying up until 4 a.m. talking on the AOII house couch to buying a new Mac Book Pro with my savings, I had so many memories! I am glad I am one to take plenty of pictures — I had so much fun going through my FB albums from this past year to help inspire this post.
21. I laughed and I cried
And sometimes a combination of the two. This was certainly a very emotional year, and you can imagine how rough the 4 hour drive, alone, moving home from Tampa was. Thanks to everyone who made me laugh to offset the bad days!
22. Through all the ups and downs, I believed in myself
Lastly, I am where I am now at 23 because I believed in myself at 22.
So this past week in NYC has been incredible (I’m sure this will continuously be the case), but really! I am learning so much at my internship and truly getting to see all that goes in to the insane world that is public relations.
I’ve just been so motivated, inspired, challenged and more and haven’t been able to find a way to word it. However, today at an IPG intern event, a speaker really nailed it for me. They encouraged all of us interns to
“Be a sponge”.
Really, soak up everything you can.
I am certainly a sponge. Every client I hear my team talk about I just want to learn more, and seeing our campaigns launch throughout the summer is so rewarding to be a part of.
I am in the digital department, and let me tell you, spending the days on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Vine . . . will never be the same. Did you do as I suggested and go “Like” your favorite brands on Facebook yet? Do it, they are watching.
Part of being a sponge is cleaning up messes (haven’t had any crises yet, but I am so ready), and not being afraid of what you are put up to. This week I got my first intern errand challenge – getting supplies for a client’s video shoot. I traveled all over for a specific product, and even a mini road trip to Jersey City for a needed piece to the puzzle.
So enjoy absolutely every opportunity AND CHALLENGE – another example being me getting an awesome grade on my basic marketing class after my building’s internet went out and I trekked quite a few blocks to a Panera – you come across, be a sponge. Be a really big sponge ready to get soaked with knowledge, and maybe a little worn out 🙂
HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK
Boating in central Park! My housing offers many adventures for us, and one of them was a free hour of boating in Central Park. This was quite the workout when I took my turn rowing the boat, but the scenery was so beautiful! Also, one of the girls who signed up is an AOII with me, I love wearing AOII shirts and finding these discoveries. Also, while rowing along, a boat of 4 girls hollered at me asking what sorority my shirt says, and it turns out they were 4 sisters, making 6 pandas out on that lake!
Always makes my day when sisterhood shines like that – making me even more satisfied with being a sponge and soaking up that opportunity!
Have a great week, sponges.
Aaaand… how can I forget that Darcie and I got fried Oreos in Times Square?