Change is opportunity to grow; embrace it

Each morning when I wake up, I can look forward to seeing a new Facebook memory on my timeline bringing back middle school jokes and pictures from when throwing up peace signs was still cool. While they give me a good laugh and let me reminisce, they also let me see how much change has taken place over the years.

Just recently, one of the memories that popped up on my feed was an article I wrote over a year ago detailing my battle with Ankylosing Spondylitis, a rare type of juvenile arthritis, and how I overcame some of the challenges that came with it. This particular arthritis causes severe pain in the spine and could eventually cause my spine to fuse together one day, which could greatly reduce my mobility when I am older. When I was first diagnosed with it my junior year of high school, I struggled with the fact key components of my life were changing and I had no control over them.

I struggled because change was scary to me.

When I came to college, I was filled with even more change. Change in location, priorities and personal growth. From new classes to new friends, everything was different.

At first, as it is to many other freshmen, this change was unsettling to me. I tried to control the change in any way I could, trying to plan out what my future was going to look like. I sought out plans, like potentially going to law school, that would bring me the most security rather than the ones, like becoming a broadcast journalist, that would fulfill my passions. I knew my dreams were risky, uncertain, and would bring constant change.

But this way of thinking is backwards.

I realized I had been thinking about change all wrong. Instead of thinking the uncertainty of change was scary, it should be seen as a new opportunity to grow. You can only grow when you put yourself in uncomfortable situations and when you are fearless enough to try something new.

There is a certain feeling of peace that comes along with knowing you have no idea where you will be in the future, but being OK with following God’s lead. By pursuing journalism, I have no idea what city I will be in when I graduate in a few years, but I have found comfort in the idea of traveling around, seeking change, rather than running away from it.

The only sense of security we need is faith in His plan and the rest will naturally work itself out. Change is not something that is scary or alarming, but rather something exciting that helps us enjoy the journey of life.

When I look back to those Facebook memories, I enjoy seeing how I have personally grown over the years. I am happy I have grown from the awkward preteen who was going through puberty and making weird faces in photos, to someone who no longer fears change and the uncertainty life brings.

Jessica Babb is a sophomore journalism and political science major from Harker Heights. She is the broadcast managing editor for the Lariat.