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A very little girl with very big dreams-how I evolved this fall

In this blog, I am going to share a bit about how I evolved this fall and what I learned attending Westminster college. I can blame the fact I never shared how finals at college went and what I learned from the fall semester at Westminster on my life being hectic, but really I felt if I shared my results I would be in a way bragging and you might wonder why I was telling you how awesome I was.

I kinda felt like Barney in How I Met Your Mother. But so many people were curious how I did and believed my story could inspire others who are having a hard day or overcoming a huge struggle in their life I decided to tell a bit about what went on this fall. This story will be…wait for it…legendary.

On my first math test, I received an 80. I made SO many little mistakes. Honestly, I was a bit disappointed, but I looked at what I could do to improve. Instead of blaming the teacher, blaming the test, blaming my sister for keeping me up the night before, I looked at my result with a motivated mindset. I didn’t feel guilty, and bad, and stupid. I looked at my test and figured out what I could do to improve. I decided to underline the important words, make sure I accurately checked every answer, and keep redoing the problem until I felt in my gut the answer was correct.

The class was applying algebra to real-life situations. Lots of algebra in economics and gas and house prices problems. So lots of words and little steps. My grades kept improving every test because I kept evaluating what I could do better on every test. In addition to algebra, I took Human Communication, Macroeconomics, and Geology. Straight from the beginning, Geology proved to me I was in fact human. No matter how hard I studied for Geology I was absolutely terrible. I did my best but decided in September to take Geology as one of my passes/fail to credit/no credit classes.

The week before my finals I went to Colorado to watch Jeanee compete and see all my friends. I was prepared for that trip to be very emotionally taxing. I was prepared for Friday, the start of Dew Tour to be the biggest challenge and one of the hardest days of my life. Last winter was so very hard for me. I didn’t even know at the time how hard it was. Jeanee stopped wanting me to come to competitions and I needed to start seeing a therapist. I needed help and I got help but man, I can’t even accurately tell you how hard last year was.

Instead of being a really sad and hard day, Friday it snowed a foot and a half and my friend from Park City had come to shred and stay with me, so we skied all over Breckenridge and Breck kept opening different peaks and we kept getting amazing fresh tracks. It was honestly one of the best days of my life.

I went through so many emotional rollercoasters this fall. I had happy days and sad days. I made some great friends this fall and had some wonderful experiences. I embraced college. I went to parties every weekend. I went through the part of my recovery when I was 18-24 years old. (In my recovery I relived life. I acted like a 1 year old, 5 years old, 10-year-old 15-year-old…) I started college as an 18-year-old. Now I am back to being a 24 year old. Oh, and what happened at finals? I missed the week before, but I was that nerd piled down with books studying at registration for the Halfpipe comp, did it pay off?

Well on the Sunday before finals and after Jeanee’s competition (in which she placed 9th in the world!) I drove back to Park City and on Monday, the very next day, I had finals in Algebra and Geology. In Algebra I was one of the last people to hand in the test. I erased and redid my answers a million times. When I turned it in I thought I had done alright. Turned out I had done alright, my math grade was what the curve was based on because so many students failed. I ended up with a 97 and since I was on the curve a 97 was 100%! I am still definitely human though because I went to Geology the very same day and got a 52. I did put in enough effort in Geology though so I passed and ended up with credit. The whole fall I felt I did well in Macroeconomics and Human Communications. I did well in finals and it turned out when I received my final transcript I got a pass and three A’s.

Over the course of this fall I went back to becoming a person who accomplished things for being a person, not someone who was accomplishing great things for being a TBI survivor, but someone who was back to accomplishing great things for anybody. When I left Vancouver, still in the coma, the doctor told my mom she had to be prepared I would never accomplish anything, never be able to take care of myself or live independently, never go back to being normal.

I got straight A’s at a good college, I lived by myself for September and October, but they were correct about one thing. I never went back to being normal. I did go back to being a 24-year old (My age). I started a nonprofit First Family Flight: ( you will hear more about First Family Flight later).

And now I am back to being a very little girl with very big dreams, but don’t worry, I will never go back to being normal.