"Years of Yes's" by Lilyan T.
Dear lil Tay,
I know that you're excited about the next four years, about the prospect of striking it on your own and just doing you.
I know that you think living on your own will be a walk in the park (no accountability or punishments, am I right?) and so, so self-explanatory.
I know that you think that these will be the best four years of your life, that they have to be.
I know that you think you have to get into all the exclusive clubs (you know which ones they are) in order to feel like you've made it, that acceptance is a measure of worth.
I know that you feel like you are stuck in the international bubble, that you have to go to house parties in order to have "American" friends, that clubbing is THE way to go out.
I know that you think having a boyfriend will make everything that much better (spoiler alert: it does not).
But I want to tell you that there is no one right way of experiencing Georgetown, that there are many paths to the same end goal (hopefully, graduation!).
That living alone thing isn't that easy--you'll have to do your own laundry (most of your whites will become blue at some point or another), make your own food (snack shopping is the key to survival), the list is endless--so...call your mom and thank her right now!!
That you can change your major or school multiple times and still graduate on time while taking electives you want to (yes, you will start out as pre-med before going to computer science and finally ending up in government and sociology).
That getting into exclusive clubs may be exciting but it isn't everything; you truly can be more than a label and crazily enough, you can even quit. It won't make you any less of a person, it simply means that you know who you are or are at least that much closer to knowing, that you're discovering more about what you can be.
That being busy is not an answer to "How are you?", that you will have time if only you make it, that doing less can be more, that taking 'me' time is acceptable and often the sole remedy you need. Basically, being alone does not make you a loser. Own your passions, interests, and desires.
That homesickness is real, sophomore slump can happen, and study abroad really could "change your life" (but you could also not go abroad and still find yourself). Your eight semesters here are yours for the taking and molding.
That you don't have to be happy every single day, that you don't have to love every aspect of the hilltop, that your four years may not be perfect but you'll emerge stronger for all the bumps.
That things will happen and you will have to adapt, possibly even change your once solid life plans (is there even such a thing as knowing your future?). You can find new interests in the middle of your time and turn them into a career. Life is ever-changing and you are too!
That everything will be worth it because the best part of this whole journey will be the people--everyone from your professors to your friends. They will come from all walks of life. These are the people in it for the long haul--you can't get rid of them and you won't want to. They will be there to catch you, cheer you on, and love you. They will be your rocks and there is no better feeling than feeling like you're coming home, that you have a home here, and most importantly, that you have a family away from home.
So do not be afraid to try new things, to be courageous, to take risks, to push yourself, and above all, to make your next four years, years of yes's.
Lilyan Tay (COL '17)