I’ll always remember the first time I decided to make a change in my life. It was nothing profound, yet it was a challenge because when you’re young who you are is often tied up in what you do. Change meant letting go of something that had become part of my identity. Still, that minor revolution in my high school years taught me something important that has resonated through the years to follow.
My dad was a coach, so my older sisters and I spent much of our childhood frequenting basketball courts and football stadiums. As a result, my sisters gravitated toward cheerleading. I followed like a little duckling, though it was something I endured more than enjoyed. I was never really good at it—just cheerful enough to make the squad. And I didn’t exactly like the weekly routine of freezing out of my skin and screaming at the top of my lungs all for the glory of the game. Not to mention that all but two of the girls on the squad were the stereotypical mean girls.
It wasn’t until my junior year in high school that I decided to stop torturing myself. Why waste my time doing something I didn’t enjoy and wasn’t good at all because it was what my sisters did, what I’d always done, or what was expected of me? The time for change had come. And the only thing I regretted was not having done it sooner.
From that experience, I learned to never waste my time doing what I clearly wasn’t wired to do, and to never be afraid to change. It doesn’t matter what people expect or what your past dictates. Life is too short to be squandered on things that steal your purpose.
Because of that choice, I’ve found what I’m truly passionate about: music, writing, and teaching. And I’ve been more sensitive when seasons shift—unafraid to say goodbye to the old and welcome the new. I know now that change means leaving behind the known and embracing the unknown, which is most often the pathway to what’s best.