Wednesday was my last day of classes for my undergraduate career here at BYU. Despite how burned out I am and how excited I am to be graduating, the realization was still a bittersweet moment. As I've been thinking about my time here at BYU and the experiences I've had here, I've decided to be a little cliche and spend some time reflecting on what I've done in these past four years.
When I first realized that the Lord wanted me to go to BYU (not the U of U, on which I'd originally planned), I had no idea just how much following His counsel would change and bless my life. In my first year, I moved from home and spent a great deal of time feeling homesick and lonely. But I soon realized that, once I became accustomed to the atmosphere in Provo and the idea of being away from home, I thrived on being independent and testing my ability to succeed in the world on my own. I made a great number of friends that I never would have made if I had not taken the huge leap of faith to move out on my own. I changed my major twice and found myself in English and Editing, which was (I thought) the perfect major for me. I grew spiritually and discovered more about myself. I hiked Mount Timpanogos in the fall and hiked the Y in the spring. I "wrote a musical" and developed my musical skills in several ways. I left that first year excited to move home but still with great anticipation for what future years would bring.
And so I moved on to my second, third, and fourth years at BYU. The changes that occurred in my life during those years were not as dramatic or immediate as the changes from my first year, but they have still been very real. I changed my major one more time to Communication Disorders, the major I'm now graduating in. I took the GRE and applied to grad school. I found a housing situation that has suited me very well for three years. I've had some roommate situations which were less-than-ideal and some that were incredibly wonderful. I've had some teachers and classes that drove me nuts from day one and some that have reminded me of why I love school and learning so much. I've developed my musical talents in ways I would never have expected, from orchestra and cello lessons to singing to private organ lessons to choral conducting. I've conducted 14 ward choir numbers and 4 stake choir numbers. I've had several different callings and tried my best to serve others in school and in my ward. I've experienced great sorrow and trials, but I've also experienced an equal measure of happiness and joy. I've been positively influenced by many different people, and I hope that I've been able to be a positive influence on some of the people I've met. I know that the things I've learned and experienced in the past four years will have a positive impact on the rest of my life, and I'm so grateful for my time here at BYU.