Sunday, September 7, 2014

mountains and metaphors

As I sat at the top of the mountain last night, looking down on the valley from that giant white Y, I got to thinking about how beautiful it was up there. And how hot and sweaty and tiring it was to walk up there, but how it's so worth it when you do. And then I started thinking about how gosh darn good life has been to me lately. I was reading through past journals right before I flew out here, and it reminded me of how hard high school was. And about how I was actually sad to leave it despite the gloomy memories and the stunted growth I was starting to feel. How terrified I was of the finality of graduation. And then I was thinking about how insane the last couple of weeks have been. Moving out to Utah and starting college and being on my own. And it feels like reaching the top of the mountain. One entry in particular really stuck out to me. I wrote about how I wasn't quite sure who I wanted to be, and that I had all of these ideas about this girl who did everything I wished I did, but I was terrified that by doing those things I longed to do, I'd realize that the grass wasn't as green as I thought it would be. Maybe England wouldn't be lovely. Maybe college would just be hard. Maybe I wouldn't enjoy taking pictures or cooking food or exercising more. 

But then I went to England, and honestly it was one of the best things I've ever done. I found my confidence and my personality, my original personality, over there across the pond. Free from the scrutiny and judgement of those who've known me for years, I let myself experiment with this girl of my dreams. And she turned out to be a really fun person to be. So I came back to the states and tried my best to continue living my dream. To keep that fire of confidence and self-appreciation burning. And you know what? It's kind of hard sometimes. College really is as hard as they say it is. There really are thousands of people on this campus, so making friends feels overwhelming. I still have no idea where I am when I try to go to class. I have no idea how on earth I'll get all my homework done. I miss my family. And sometimes I forget to be myself.

But when I remember to stay true to me, things work out. I start to realize what absolutely fabulous friends I have. I've realized that they don't have to be people my age or even in my town. They can be my crossfit peeps and my favorite teacher and my mother and darling blogger friends I've never met before but email often. They could be my cousins and my kindergarten best friend and my lookalike best friend/twin and friends I didn't make until senior year. Getting wet and sunburned and sore and dirty are the results of some of the most fabulous adventures, preserved solely through the imprints of our memories. I'm realizing that there is so. much. more waiting beyond the halls of high school, that there is so much more life to be lived and adventures to be had and sleep to be lost after graduation. And that while those four years felt like hiking up one of the steepest mountains I've ever encountered, full of it's fair share of blood, sweat, and tears, and when I got to the top, I see more mountains to climb just ahead, the view from the top of this mountain? It's the best in the world.

Sincerely, mad


  1. I stumbled upon your blog via Julia Paige :) I just wanted to say that I love your pictures! Hiking the Y is my favorite! :)

    1. Hi Kira! Nice to meet you! Haha you're so sweet. Isn't Julia a doll?

  2. You are an inspiration! I may be way out there but maybe you should think about being a life coach for those young girls who are struggling to find themselves