After reflecting on two memories from different periods of time in my life, I’ve realized how much I’ve changed over the past two years. For some strange reason, my initial thought when reminiscing about my semester of Writing 220 was the process of writing/revising my resume. I was so anxious about whether I had enough experience or even the right kind of experience to land my first public relations internship. At first, I had no idea why fixing my resume was my most prominent memory considering its not all that interesting or unique. But then after the second reflecting exercise, I saw a parallel between the selected memories and my personality progression throughout my time at Michigan. But I’ll get to that part in a bit.
When asked to think of a more recent memory, my brain immediately flooded with images I wanted to re-live again: my time in Las Vegas, football Saturday pregames, Christmas parties, etc. After a minute, I was able to focus my thoughts on my recent trip to Aruba, particularly a day when I unexpectedly decided to go off-roading on ATVs with my sister (you know, those really manly looking 4-wheel cars/trucks).
Normally, my sister and I are lounging on the beach type of people when we go on vacation. But we decided to switch it up this time. I specifically remember us on dry dirt roads surrounded by big ocean waves. The temperature was extremely high that day and I could feel it even more than usual because of my sunburn. There was a strong breeze due to the speed of the car that kept my hair back from my face while riding. It was one of those things where you don’t feel like you have complete control over what you’re doing but keep going anyway. I never took my eyes off of my sister in front of me who was following the tour guide to our various locations. The roads were bumpy and the machine was hot. But I felt so liberated going fast down the dirt roads. And I realized that relaxation could come in other forms than just laying on the beach tanning and listening to music.
I believe now, as I come closer to graduation, that I appreciate and value my experiences so much more. I can’t help but feel nostalgic about my time at Michigan because I’ve progressed as a person so much more than I expected. My first memory was at its core a girl intimidated by what she didn’t know (the scary professional world). The second, reflected a confident and adventurous woman ready and excited for all the amazing things life has to offer.