So far, my break has been great. I work in the morning, do something fun with family or friends during the day, and do homework in the evening. I wish it were always like this! But hey, at least I’m 3/4 of the way done with freshman year! It’s been wonderful.

One thing I haven’t gotten to work on yet is scholarship searching. Yes, it’s that time of year to apply. I know I definitely wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for scholarships. I’m so thankful that last year many people selected me as a recipient for local scholarships. I probably applied to around 30, and it definitely paid off. But right now I’m in a bit of a situation. I still don’t know how I’m going to afford next year. Unfortunately, it seems like there are tons of scholarships for incoming freshmen to apply for through their high schools, but there are hardly any out there for current college students. How do they expect us to come back each year? It’s stressful because I’ve spent a lot of time looking for scholarships, and have only found a few this year I qualify for. I was counting on a big one that I thought I had a good chance at, but sadly I received notice today that I didn’t get it. It really is a heart-breaker for me. I put so much time into my applications and feel like I’m a deserving candidate, and then I just get denied. I’m not so good with failure. But I know that I’m not the only one, and God has a reason for everything.

I think in these past few years I’ve let scholarships become too big a part of my life. They are such a great resource for students, and I encourage everyone to apply for them. Honestly though, I’ve put so much pressure on myself because of them. Since my first day of high school, I worked so hard to have a flawless grade point average,  be involved in clubs and activities, and serve my community all because I knew about scholarships. Of course, that wasn’t my only reason for becoming so involved in my school, but deep down I believed that the only way I’d go to college and become successful was to get scholarship money. What I’ve learned is whether I receive them or not, I can’t dwell on them. There will always be another one to apply for and there will always be another way to earn money. Money comes and goes. It’s just hard because no one wants to start off their adult years with thousands of dollars of debt. There are so many students in college stressed out every day because of financial issues. I don’t think that’s right because a student shouldn’t have to worry about money. They should be able to focus on school. But I guess life isn’t perfect.

In the big scheme of things, I recognize that it doesn’t really matter how many scholarships I receive. They are a blessing, but they’re not the most important thing in my life. I’m learning to not be so hard on myself about paying for school. The Lord commands us many times not to worry. He declares that He has a good plan for us, and He will always provide. I just have to remind myself that if I remain focused on Him, everything will work out for the best.