Here's to the Class of 2017

This is it. The final year. You did it (well, almost). Just acknowledge that for a moment, you have made it through approx. 17 years of school, countless numbers of brown bagged lunches made by mom or dad which you ended up trading for something better, tardy slips, detentions, the dreaded locker room, your first ever A and your first ever F, all has led to this very moment...congratulations, this is a HUGE accomplishment, don't let anyone EVER tell you different. As I sat scrolling through my phone over the last few weeks I couldn't help but come across the copious amounts of #backtoschool tags and photo's of cars loaded up, dorm rooms decorated, and smiles on friends faces that brighten up the screen without touching it. However, I also couldn't help but come across the more sentimental posts about the final year of school and to be honest, these hit more close to home, because it was only one year ago that I was feeling all their feelings, and stressing about all the things their stressing. I understood. I got it, the fact that you might not be able to imagine what life could look like in a year from now or even the next semester. Everything you are feeling and thinking about is valid. You are allowed to be slightly crazy, you are allowed to feel like life is messy, because is, sorry but there is no sugar coating that one. You are the graduating class of 2017, so here are 17 things that I want to tell you:

  1. Those events you think are lame or boring? Go to them. Don't miss out on acting like a dork, dressing up, and making a fool of yourself because you are a senior. Show the classes under you that you are never too cool for school.
  2. Stop using "I can't I have homework" as an excuse. We all know you are going to watch Netflix and sit in your room.
  3. Missing class every now and then to sit with a friend and talk about life is needed, your professors with understand...well some. We just won't tell them.
  4. Take your favorite professor or staff member out for coffee or a meal, talk about their life, not just yours.
  5. Make a Senior Year bucket list and actually do it.
  6. Use school resources, seriously.
  7. Senioritis is real. I would prescribe a daily dose of belly laughter, Jesus, and coffee to keep you going strong till the end.
  8. That person you have a "friend-crush" on, go ask them to get coffee and actually make it happen, don't just say it.
  9. Connections are huge, make them. You never know who can help you in a bind, or when in need of a job.
  10. Who you are right now, will not be the same person at the end of your senior year. It's not about what you do, it's about who you want to be.
  11. Don't leave that place with people you need to forgive or you need to apologize to. Forgiveness is not for the other person, it's for you.
  12. Take a personal health day every now and then to just get off campus, be by yourself, and talk to God.
  13. Step out of your comfort zone, risk being truly seen. It's scary and it's freeing.
  14.  If you got your "ring by spring" congrats, may the Lord bless your relationship! If not? Congrats! Life is pretty awesome wether taken or single, enjoy the season you are in.
  15. It's okay to feel like the world is falling apart, I promise you it isn't but it's okay to feel like it for a moment, just don't stay there. Oh, and make sure you have people to help you get out of it.
  16. Stop telling yourself you need to have it all figured out.
  17. When you leave, how will people remember you?

If I could I would write a book about everything I would want to tell you, but I'm sure there are multiple books already, and frankly, ain't nobody got time for that (except, you know, authors). But in all honesty, I am rooting for you, I am on your team. I think I speak for most people when I say, we want to see you succeed, and we want to see you rock your senior year. There will be hard times when you want to cry, never get out of bed, and proclaim your new life of living off the government, that's okay, you'll get over it. There will also be times of pure joy, when you want to scream from the sun, dance in chapel, eat all the food in the caf, and take ridiculous amounts of sunset photos, embrace it, it's senior year. You've got this warrior.

From one human to the next,