Things I Learned This Summer

Hi friends! In previous posts, I’ve mentioned that I spent the summer away at an internship. I didn’t give any details because I wanted to wait until I was back home before I said anything on the blog or social media about it. Now that I am back, I can officially discuss my summer internship experience with you all!

I spent this summer at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Cornell has been my dream school for years, so I was extremely excited to get this opportunity. The first few weeks were an adjustment, since upstate New York is very different from Florida. It’s beautiful, but in a different way. Here are some pictures I took around campus and while hiking through Ithaca’s waterfalls.

I learned a lot this past summer, so I decided to write about a few of those things! Here they are:

Feel the fear, but do it anyway

I was nervous to spend the summer in a new city, away from my family and friends. Still, I knew it would be a great opportunity for me to grow, not only as a young professional, but as a person. It was intimidating to live so far away from home for such a long time but I did it anyway. I did miss home a lot (it would hurt me to open my weather app and my hometown would always be the first city to come up…), but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I think my parents took it harder than I did.

Trust God’s timing, not your own

Last summer, I applied to the very same internship program. Unfortunately, I didn’t get in. I was sad about it for a little while, but I knew I could try again next summer. Now that I’ve actually had the experience, I think it was for the best that I didn’t go last summer. Throughout the past year, I have matured and become more capable of standing on my own two feet. I knew that not being accepted was God’s way of protecting me. He knew (even though I didn’t) that it would have been much harder for me at that point in my life.

Don’t stay in your room

As an introvert, I would feel more comfortable staying in my room than going out. But just like everything in life, there must be a balance. It’s okay to hang out in your room every once in a while, but it’s also okay to go out every once in a while. Go and eat out with your friends. Go to the living room and talk to your roommates. It’s true that the best memories I have of this trip were of spending time with my roommates, not of being alone in my room.

Be respectful of others, and they will be respectful of you

One of the things I was worried about before starting was that my roommates and labmates wouldn’t like me. But (unless they are truly awful people) if you respect them, they will respect you in return. I used this strategy, and it worked! I got along well with my roommates and my internship-mates. We ended up spending a lot of time hanging out together and we still keep in touch.

Routines are great, but you’ll learn a lot if you take a break from them

I love routines. I could swear by them. But this summer, I took a break from my routine to try something completely different. I actually created new routines and a new normal when I was away. After a break from my usual routine, I am now ready to get back into the swing of things and begin my senior year back at my home school.

I had a lot of fun this past summer. It was a fantastic learning experience that I am so thankful for. I hope to be able to return to Cornell soon!

How was your summer?

Life is Too Short

Hi, friends. I know a lot of you like my blog because I try to post positive things and spread happiness. This post is different than my usual posts; it’s long and a bit of a roller coaster, because that is what my life has been these past few weeks.

 

My cousin and I went to see Before You Exit in concert a few weeks ago. They are a three piece, guitar based band of brothers (think: Jonas Brothers). We decided to splurge on the VIP package, and it was worth it. We got to meet the guys and attend a small Q&A/acoustic performance session. I was starstruck when Riley, my favorite member of BYE, answered my question. During the meet and greet, they asked us how we were doing, said they were happy to see us, and gave us tight hugs. It was quick, but I’ll never forget it.

Back in April, they announced that Christina Grimmie would be opening for them. I had heard about her before, but I hadn’t bothered to check out her music (I don’t know why, I was missing out). But I decided to listen to her music and watch a couple of her videos to get to know her. Like anyone who has ever watched a Christina Grimmie video, I instantly loved her. She was genuine, goofy, and relatable. She spoke about the nerdy things she loved, like video games, without regard for what others would think. She also spoke openly about her faith in God, which was refreshing. Her voice blew me away. I sing in my church’s choir, but when I heard Christina, I felt ashamed to ever open my mouth again because she was that good.


Photo Credit: Mackenzie Bearup Photography

The concert itself was a lot of fun. We were standing at the barricade in front of Christina’s piano, so I’m positive she saw us jumping and screaming. When the show ended, there was atmosphere of such celebration, joy, and love. I recognized BYE’s friends and family members who were in the audience. I saw Christina, too. I wanted to say hi to her and tell her about how much she inspires me to be a better musician, a better person, and a better follower of Jesus. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance, and now I regret it…

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