The Beauty of Change

by USjournal Student Writer: Rebecca Darrup, Cross-Country Cowgirl

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.

I was online the other day and came across that quote from Harriet Tubman, a woman who escaped slavery and was instrumental in hundreds of others achieving freedom.

As a college kid, I have to admit that there are plenty of times in a week (okay, even daily) that I question what exactly my dream is. Honestly, that's the beauty of being a college student in the USA -- It's okay to change your dreams! My options are always wide open: I can continue on the path I'm on, I can change my major (my principal subject or course of study), I could add a major or a minor (a secondary course of study), or I could change schools altogether!

Any of those choices are completely acceptable, and even normal! I know several kids who are at different universities than where they originally started, and even more have changed their plan of study as they got into a variety of classes. Actually, when my dad was in college, he started as an accounting major, but as he took different classes like biology to satisfy his university's liberal arts curriculum, he decided he liked the medical field -- as in, he really, really liked the medical field -- and even though his advisor suggested it might be a bad idea, my dad ended up in medical school, and now loves being a doctor! He tells me all the time (so does my mom) that he had no idea what he wanted to do when he was 20 years old. You might be older than that, you might be younger than that. Either way, it's still okay to not be sure of what you want to do as a career!

Sun over the ranch

More often than not, change (especially dramatic change) can cause a stomach-flipping, heart-in-your-throat, weak-at-the-knees kind of feeling... A very uncomfortable feeling that most people would avoid, including me.

Right now, I think I'm on my fourth major -- in two years. However, each major was undertaken with a dream in mind, so I don't feel bad about it.

What are your dreams?

What is your passion? What motivates you to get out of bed each morning, regardless of how early it is?

If each one of us was to chase our dreams, and not stop until we caught them, can you imagine the kind of world we'd live in?? I think it would be so very different than what it is now! Probably a lot more chaotic.

There's a saying that goes something like this: If you love your work, you'll never really work a day in your life. Now, that's maybe not totally realistic, as there will always be some things you don't enjoy, such as the paperwork of the business you started. On the flip side of that... it's a necessity for the business, the business is your own, and if it's a business you started, chances are you started it because it's something you love! That makes even the un-enjoyable aspects a little more bearable.

Now, if you're on this particular website, reading this particular article (oh, you are, hey there!), I think it's safe to say that you are strong, patient, and passionate, just like Harriet Tubman said.

Do you feel like it?? The answer might be no, and that's alright! It can be hard to see in ourselves what others see in us. When you notice those characteristics, though, make sure you hold on to them, and to the feeling that came with them! Remember the boldness, the courage, and that feeling of standing a little taller.

Southwestern United States

I'll let you in on a secret: You are braver than me. Yes, I'm almost to the other side of this vast country from home, but I'm still in my own country! I'm chasing my dreams, and if you're thinking about coming to America for college, you're sure chasing your dreams too! That's something to be proud of.

If you get here and decide you're not sure you like the major you chose, that's okay. It doesn't mean you failed; it just means you're crossing one option off the list of the millions of paths you could take. You might change your dream a little bit, or pick a new one entirely, but that's what college / university is for. That's what America is for. This nation is a place where dreamers can begin to change the world. Your kind of change in the world might look different from your best friend's, or from mine, or from your parents', and that's a good thing, too!

You've probably noticed by now that change has been on my mind quite a bit lately. I'm learning that life is all about change and how you deal with it -- whether it be a change in where you live, what your major is, who your sports coach is, or even in the horses you take to rodeo competitions.

Rodeo practice

The other part of this whole change thing is to be there for those who need you, and to know that there are people who are there for you, too, even if it may not feel like it. Trust me when I tell you that my best friend (who I met here in New Mexico at college) has heard about enough concerning the horses I'm going to have to sell and ones I might buy. That seems insignificant, I know, but that is one of my dreams -- rodeo is my favorite thing in the world. Anyway, my point was: My friend A'lia has listened to me rant, ramble, speculate, scheme, and cry over these silly horses, and she's gone through lots of these changes with me. And that made it so much better than enduring all that by myself.

Who do you turn to when life picks a fight with you? Who turns to you when he / she needs a friend?

Change can be scary; it can be frustrating to no end, but when you get to the other side of one change, you realize just how beautiful it was, and going through it with a friend is such a blessing.

So, until next time, stay strong, stay patient, stay passionate. Continue chasing your dreams, one step at a time, and keep on challenging those changes!

Here are Rebecca's other posts, in case you missed them:

Best of luck in all your endeavors,
especially as you move forward on your college path!

To begin your journey to study in the USA, use!