By Shannon Burns
For many people, change is hard. Change can mean that your world and your life deviate from what they once were, from what you once knew them to be, and maybe from what you were comfortable with. In certain circumstances change can be negative and can bring about what is unwanted. Change can cause pain or chaos in our lives, and turn everything upside down in the worst way. But, often, change can be positive. Sometimes we can’t see that in the moment, or sometimes we are aware of it but still hesitant to embrace it. But those positive changes are the ones that we need to take advantage of. Positive change can push us in a new direction, and create necessary disruptions in our lives that take us somewhere new and unexplored. These changes can bring us to new people, new places, and new realizations. And this can be scary, but this is life. One thing about change is that it is usually inevitable. We might try to fight back, to avoid any and all change, but it has a way of sweeping us up eventually.
Change brings about a level of uncertainty. In venturing or being pushed into something new, you are placed in a situation that you haven’t experienced before. And you might have no idea how it will turn out. Not knowing outcomes, not being sure of where a change will take you can be overwhelming and daunting. And you definitely don’t get a guidebook for how to deal with these changes. There is a certain trust that you have to have that it will all work out the way that it is supposed to; that you will be able to figure it out, and that it will all be okay.
Dealing with changes in ourselves is similarly difficult. As human beings, we are supposed to grow, develop, and evolve. This takes place over the span of hundreds of years for the human race, but also over the course of a lifetime for us as individuals. When you find yourself changing, you might be apt to draw back. Will you like who you become? Will others? Life is about taking each day, each experience, and learning from it in a positive and constructive way. It is about applying the lessons that you learn to yourself, your life, and your future. We can’t expect to be the same person our entire lives. We have to accept the people who we are becoming. As life goes on and we change, we are not necessarily becoming someone new—we are becoming who we really are. That isn’t something to shy away from.
Throughout life at Holy Cross, each student will experience both little and drastic changes. The freshmen have entered into this new environment, this new world. Coming to college is a big, life-altering change. We have to find a new rhythm, we have to create a new life, and that is both nerve-racking and extremely exciting. The seniors are preparing for a big change of their own: a change that can actually be characterized as one similar to the freshmen, but that involves a different stage of life and a different type of transition. They are leaving this college world that they have known for the past four years, and entering the real world. Sophomores and juniors are not exempt from change either. College life entails that with every year, every semester, every day, new relationships are made, new classes are taken, new places and ideas are explored. College involves continuous changes, and a continuous transition to finding yourself and finding the world.
Life is ever changing, and we as people so are we. That is a fact that, oddly enough, we can’t change. But don’t think that we have absolutely no control over change. We often have the ability to evoke and embrace positive change in ourselves and in the world around us. We have the ability to make sure that changes are made for the better, and not for the worse; we can make the distinction between what would be a good change, and what would be a bad one. There are some changes that we can’t control, but others that we can. We can always make decisions to move in the positive directions.