Without some struggles there is no progress in life

All I ever wished for when I was younger was to grow up faster.

I wanted my own car, apartment, money and freedom to do whatever I wanted to do.

It all sounded so simple. Well, this is not a reality check. High school was supposed to be the best years of a teenager’s life. An easy time, a fun time and somewhere to meet all your friends and find out who you are –– negative.

High school was not that unbelievably fun time for me, it was drama filled and annoying. You wish for graduation every single day, counting down the days.

But for what?

To not have to see all the people you grew up with every day anymore?

To finally move away from your hometown for some people?

Because when you graduate, real life starts.

That is what they tell you right? For some people, real life does not start in college.

Mom and dad still pay for things, get you where you need to go and push you along in the right direction.

For others, it is the real world.

I pay my own rent, working a job four days a week to do so.

I can barely afford the expensive gas prices here in Shippensburg, Pa. and it is an emotional struggle every time I pull up to the gas pump.

I pay for my own books and school supplies.

And lastly, I pay for my own food.

Now, when I thought about growing up, I figured I would have an abdundance of money to do all of these things.

Guess again. Growing up is hard.

It is not what I thought it would be when I was 11 years old. I thought I would have the money to travel when I graduated, that money would not be so tight, that finding jobs would not be so hard. I was wrong.

Do not get me wrong, I love my freedom to come and go as I please.

I love making my own decisions about where and how I want to live my life.

However, a little less stress on the big picture would be better for me.

I would like to live a life of wealth and not stress so much about how I am going to go grocery shopping next week.

However, living the life I do has made me who I am. I appreciate everything I have and take care of my belongings.

I cherish my family so much more because I know they are so proud of me for doing things on my own all the time.

I do not rely on anyone else to get me from point A to point B.

I get there myself. Being independent is something quite wonderful, but also quite hard.

I have worked for everything I have and that makes me appreciate the independence much more.

Next May I am set to graduate from Shippensburg University.

That is insanely scary for me to think about.

What if I do not get to do what I have always wanted?

What if I am not good enough to write for the magazine that I want to?

And what if I am not ready?

The funny thing about life is, you are never ready.

I have been thrown into the pit before and it is not the easiest of scenarios, but I have managed. Do I get to go shopping every weekend? No. Do I have extra money lying around to do fun things, travel and spend on myself? Not usually.

That is OK with me.

Because in a year and some months, I am hopefully going to be working, living my own life even more than I already do and I will be ready.

I have gone through a lot and matured in ways some people will not this early.

In life, without struggle there is no progress.

I stand very firmly behind that statement and I am a living example of it. I have fought for what I have and who I have become and because I have stuggled, I have learned and bettered myself.

Growing up has taught me a lot.

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