ANYWAY, I saw a thread that asked what happened in a year's time. How exciting. So I'll answer that here.
This time last year...hm right before finals, yet again. I was not really worried. I didn't check NetView as obsessively as I do now... which probably would have helped. I do regret that. I ended up failing the math final, which knocked me out of Honors math. It was a kick in the cervix.
But then summer came, and I sort of forgot about it. It was challenging... not one of those good challenges that makes you feel good for getting them over with. It was the type where it stresses you out and even if you do "win" you don't feel any better. I learned to accept my loss.
I learned to accept a lot of not-so-great things in the past year. Like, little things that used to bother me don't seem so important anymore. With unfortunate memories, I just breathe in and count to 10. After that, I just constantly repeat that I accept it and can move on. It's soooooo wonderful to NOT remain hung up on the bad stuff, let me tell you. I think this is one of my favorite changes.
Another thing I realized was that cutting out negative things from your life is amazing. Specifically people. It took a few months... and then I was sort of free. In one particular class... I was stuck with someone who constantly stressed out about grades. Nothing wrong with that, but it got to the point where it was making her unhappy. In turn, it made me unhappy too. Like I wasn't trying as hard as she was. It didn't matter if I was happy with where I was, all that mattered was that my grades weren't perfect. Her negativity stressed me out, and everytime she complained, I found that it had an affect on my grades. Maybe that's an excuse, but I know what happened. There came a time where I switched classes and suddenly, that stress was gone.
She's not a bad person, just a bad influence. I hope that you understand the difference. This leads me into people and the change in my friendships. This year, I had to move out of that freshman friend mentality. I realized that I cannot be friends with everyone, and that is definitely for the better. Still, I am split between a few groups, and still I am trying to split up time equally amongst them, but this year... it has gotten slightly better. I've realized who my actual friends are. What I do not yet know is how to cut the other negative influences form my life.
I've learned how to say "no" to something that I didn't want to do. There were a few times this year where people I trusted would try to get me to do things. I was confused, because I thought they cared about me enough to realize that doing certain things would hurt. I was angry at those people for a while because I
felt like they were only looking out for themselves. I have to decide whether or not to tell them before it's too late and the rest of their peers start to call them out on it.
This year, I've learned that some people simply do not think the way I do, and sometimes, the difference in our thought patterns makes for a very poor friendship. More importantly, I've learned that those who DO care for me, truly do and I should show more appreciation.
I've learned that talking to teachers and seeing them as people helps your grade. I've learned that doing this.. sort of treating them as parent-figures, helps you pay more attention in class. Well, in some cases. I've learned that homework grades do make a difference and every little thing adds up.
I've learned that the people I once thought were perfect...are not even close. I've learned that the people I was once afraid of... are some of the best people I know. I've learned that forgiveness is one of the most significant things one must master in order to live a good life. I've learned that petty drama is for whores and I'm glad that my people are aware of that.
I've learned that people only affect you as much as you let them. You can accept advice, and you can refuse it. You can use the mistakes of others to learn, and "donate" the experiences from your own mistakes. Some people are just good people for you. Some people are just placed there to make you a better person, as you do the same. Some people are the opposite.
Smiling really does help. Laughter does too. Being able to act stupid with those you enjoy is one of the best feelings in the world. Popularity does not matter at all. It's perfectly fine to sit back and not stress about anything. It's fine to be able to sit back and just watch the sky and just smile.
I've learned to ask for permission before taking something. Earlier this year, a certain history teacher ranted a bit at several students who attempted to take doughnuts from the front of the class. It was such a... hilariously serious rant on the topic of food, but... it's true.
It's better to listen more and speak less. I have to practice this. We all like to talk about ourselves, but it can get very annoying. Some opinions should be kept secret.
Sometimes you just have to let people be happy. Not everyone requires your permission to have a good time. in fact, no one does. Unless it involves harming you in the name of humor. I've learned that happiness is contagious. So is sadness.
Different people like different things and that's ok. I've learned that pretending to like something only makes you look stupid. I'm sure people can sense it. I do.
Don't not do something because someone else didn't like it. Do what you want to do. I know this clashes with my "learning form other's mistakes," but in some cases, do it yourself.Don't trust everyone, and don't make promises you can't keep. DO NOT MAKE PROMISES YOU CANNOT KEEP.
I've learned that computers are people, too, and you should treat them with care. I've learned that you should write down ideas before you forget them and curse at yourself. I've learned to not curse so much in public places... working on it. I've learned to cherish good times, and disregard other times.
I've learned that becoming your own person is one of the best things eveeerrr. Yes, other people shape you, but in the end, it is you. I am really really happy the way I am. I know I am not perfect. This time last year, there were so many things I wanted to change. Two years ago, it was worse. I went into my sister's room earlier this week and saw she had a list of the things she wanted to change about herself. I felt bad because I did the same thing at her age.
I hope she finds herself, too. I hope we all do. One day, I hope we can all learn to accept ourselves and love ourselves for being ourselves. I wonder if my middle school-me would think present-me is cool. Probably not. Middle school-me would consider me a failure. :) Middle school-me was a stupid person. College-me is proud. I know it.
However, next year-me is going to look back on it and...well, I don't know... we'll see.