I just read this post on A Practical Wedding (yes, still reading it, because yes, the content is awesome) and dropped my iPad to write this post.

“These days, the memory of those years is important. In many ways they were harder beyond measure than our current day to day. The biting cold, the leaky boots, the stress over making rent, the crazy bosses and job insecurity—those outrank being up at night with a cranky baby. But in other ways, in our younger searching years, there was an ease in being true to ourselves. The jokes came easier, the late nights watching movies were unquestioned, and we were closer to our dreams, if farther from our realities.”

I am going to my 10 year college reunion in 2 weeks. At my 5 year, my job was ending in 2 weeks, I was moving my fiance and I in with one of my best friends in July, and I had no idea where life would take us. All I wanted was to be back in the comfort of Dickinson, the people who shared my college life around me and be like the college students who I yelled at as part of my job.

I wish I had known. I wish I had been confident that everything would be fine. I always wonder what life would have been like if I had been strong enough to end things with Leigh right away. Or declared that theatre major sooner. Or applied to more than one grad school. Or heck, even picked a different thesis topic. Would I still be in Student Affairs? What if I had gone to law school? Would I even have succeeded?

I’m going to this reunion in such a better place. Finishing up the first 6 months of my dream job, starting doc classes in the Fall, married to the love of my life…I just feel more successful. Regardless of the fact that I still live in a residence hall. 😉

I have a core group of friends who have seen me change from my conservative roots to the very liberal feminist I am now. I think freshman me would be appalled at 14 years later me. I went to a reproductive justice conference? I went through Safe Zone training at two different schools? I call myself a FEMINIST? WHO AM I?

I know who I am. And that scared, no-confidence, freshmen? She grew…she needed all those experiences, painful as they were. They led her to this Colleen…the successful Student Affairs professional, the happy wife, the feminist activist.

So maybe? Maybe I wish I didn’t know…because I wouldn’t be here and this me.

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