I always struggle with the first post. Should I let you know everything about me? Should I just give you my name? Should there even be an introductory first post? Should it strictly be about me and not have anything else? Should it this or that, etc., etc. This first post will be lengthy and probably boring, but will give me a chance to reflect on my life so far and fill you in on the details.
My name is Tabitha Lynn Conley and I’m 18. I recently completed my first year of college, and, when I stumbled upon my old blog here, I could not believe how immature I was. It was from about four years ago and all I did was complain and talk about how life was not fair. My goal for this is to update in a consistent manner and let my readers watch me grow as I continue my journey into adulthood.
I guess I’ll start with the basic stuff. I have grown up in small town Kentucky and have lived in the same house all of my life. I two dogs: Lady, a three year old sheltie, Sasha, an eight month old great pyrenees, and a fur nephew: Cooper, a seven month old german shepherd. You’ll be seeing and hearing a lot about them. I’m the middle child- I have one older and one younger brother. Being the only girl as well as the middle child has been interesting. Growing up, it seemed as though my parents were either upset with Derek for doing something wrong or babying Tyler, and I was forgotten. I’m not complaining too much, though, because as soon as Derek moved out, the focus came on me and my journey to and through college. At this time, I had just turned 11, and I was their star child apparently. I had straight A’s (okay, so this wasn’t hard at any time in the public school system I was in), and was on the Academic Team, I played sports, and I was active in a ton of student organizations. This sometimes took all of my parent’s attention away from my younger brother. Now, as it is 13 hours until he graduates high school, I see the effects of that. He barely made it through the classes and the schools that I slept through and passed with flying colors.
Some highlights of my school career:
6th Grade: joined band-you’ll understand why this is so important later
7th Grade: was a starter on the KY Middle School State Champion Quick Recall Team, got braces, flew for the first time, went to the National Quick Recall Tournament in Washington, D.C.
8th Grade: joined marching band, became captain of that academic team, made the basketball team, started my overdramatic years, was in a play
9th Grade: started high school, met a senior, fell in love, all that jazz
10th Grade: new band director, new love interest
11th Grade: new band director
12th Grade: the only year that mattered. I really didn’t do anything this year, but every day was a “last” and it seemed meaningful at that point in time. I applied to six colleges, ranging from Yale to the University of Kentucky, to my safety school that I was never going to actually attend, Western Kentucky University. I got accepted to all six. I chose Western. Received the John Philip Sousa Award** I got all of that award stuff and a bunch of stuff that really doesn’t matter in the real world but I worked for them my whole school career. I remember in first grade wanting to be valedictorian of my class, if that tells you what kind of child I was.
Alright, August 17th. Move in Day. Also, my younger brother’s 17th birthday. Yet another important thing to him that I got attention on. I moved in to my room at Western, scared to death of what college was going to be like. I was starting band camp and had moved in a week early, so my roommate wasn’t there yet. I was afraid, lonely, and was convinced that band camp would be a living hell, because I didn’t know anyone. I went to registration and signed in, not five minutes later did some of my first friends come up to me and introduce themselves. That day and the rest of band camp turned out to be fantastic. The Big Red Marching Band was what got me through my first semester of college.
Speaking of my first semester of college, I changed my major more times in those few months than many people do in their whole college career. Talk about the paperwork.
I went in as a Biology Major because my parents and grandmother wanted me to be a doctor. I was still in the please everyone else mode. Besides, who wouldn’t want to be a doctor? A week into classes, and the best answer to that question was me. I had no clue what to do because I didn’t want to disappoint my parents. I talked to my friends, and my older brother, and I decided that I would drop down in my parents eyes and be a Math Teacher. I mean, I love math and everything, so why not? So that was my second major. I then realized, when it came to choosing classes for my next semester, that I was spending all of my extra time on the 3rd floor of FAC (that’s the music major floor), and that I was extremely happy when the Wind Ensemble audition music was put out. I confided in an older friend on what to do, because the one thing my parents absolutely positively told me they would not support me on was a music major. She gave me some much needed advice and, after almost a month of deliberation and talking to who would become my lessons professor, I auditioned for the music program. I was accepted. I did not tell my parents for a while.
To this day, a full semester later, I have not told my high school band director. I want to, but I need his approval, and I’m afraid that I won’t get it.
While dealing with all of that, I was splitting myself up with my college life and my home life. There was this boy, my high school boyfriend, that I spent every weekend possible with, and it wasn’t until later that I realized that he didn’t care anymore and I was just wasting all of my time. That was and still is the hardest realization I’ve had.
And now here I am, one semester into being a music major and I finally realize what college is about. Well I think so, anyways. To me, so far, college has been about finding myself underneath what my many years in small town Kentucky has shaped me to be. Of course I have good morals and values from there, but everyone always wanted me to be something that I didn’t. I wanted to please everyone, but now that is obviously no way to be happy.
Coming from small town Kentucky, many people were extremely religious, my Mamaw being one of them. She took me to church and everything, but I didn’t really learn anything there. So I came into college not saved. I’m still not. But through this year and through the people I’ve met and one organization I joined, I feel as if I’ve become closer to God. I’ve cried with others about him, I’ve prayed with others to him, and I’ve prayed to him when I had no clue what to do. I am afraid to ask for help, but I need it for that reason, and I don’t know where to start.
Here it is, summer between my first and second years of college, and I’m through with my first blog post. If anyone happens to read this, welcome to my life. If you happen to stay for the ride, I hope you enjoy it.