The grades are in. I’m done. My last class at BYU is finished. The only thing left is for my diploma to come in the mail. The end of my seven years at BYU has made me reflect on how I got to this point. I’ve been noticing just how different I am from the kid who graduated from high school in Southern Alberta. As a result, I knew I wanted to write this post.
I tossed it around in my head back and forth whether I wanted to write this for my blog or for Mormon Geeks, but I felt that it fit best here. Maybe it’s cheesy to call this my origin story, but it kind of makes sense in a way. While I still lack super powers (keep my fingers crossed though, right?) I have grown much more than I thought I would.
Back in high school and middle school, I was into Yu-Gi-Oh, Digimon, Pokemon, Harry Potter, LOST, and probably some other stuff too. But no one could know. At least not about the weirder stuff like the anime. I don’t remember if I was every explicitly teased for those things when I was in high school, but it was always a worry.
- I’ve been a missionary, maybe not as long as I thought or in ways that I expected, but I’ve been able to serve the Lord.
- I have best friends. In middle school, the idea of having a best friend was only a dream. Now I have many close friends. I wish I got to see many of them more, but I know they’re there.
- I went to a football game (both American football and real football) and I enjoyed it. Granted it had more to do with the company I was with, but go figure that I had fun.
- I’ve opened up about the parts of my life that I once thought were the deepest and darkest. Now they’re my greatest teachers.
- I’ve learned two languages and forgotten one. Technically I can’t say I ever learned ASL, but I learned some. However, I did learn Spanish. I became more proficient in Spanish than I ever was in French, which I have more or less lost at this point.
- I learned that I like hiking. In Scouts, I hated it, but maybe that had more to do with not having friends in Scouts. Now I love exploring (I should really do a hike sometime in the near future…)
- I’ve been to Disneyland. TWICE! And I’m going back this fall. Be jealous.
- I learned to travel alone. Since my mission(s), I have flown on my own to California, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, and Spain. I used to think flying was so complicated, but I’m doing a pretty good job at it now.
- I learned that I like working out! I had a curiosity about it before, but now I crave that hour so two at the gym each day. It gives me a high that I thoroughly enjoy, even when I feel super sore.
- I’ve embraced my geekiness. Whereas in high school I hid it, now I flaunt it. I dress up as video game, movie, and TV show characters for Comic Conventions and any other opportunity just because it’s fun. Heck! I write for a blog entitled “Mormon Geeks”. How much geekier could it be? Seven years ago I would have NEVER done that! I even played Quidditch that one time for Garrett’s birthday.
- I learned that I like to drive. In high school, I was scared of driving. I didn’t want to get my license because the idea of getting in a wreck was so scary. Now I drive nearly every day and I depend on it way more than I wish I had to.
- I’ve visited Central America! Granted it was only for 6 hours per day for three days, but I got to visit Belize, Roatan, and Mexico briefly during our family cruise. Despite traveling from Canada to the US throughout my life, I’d never got further south.
- I got to be a best man in a wedding. Well, kinda. Garrett didn’t have groomsmen at his wedding, but I did take charge of the bachelor party and I may have (or may not have) decorated his car at the reception. Never mind the fact that I was blown away to have real friends, I never expected to have that close of a friend.
- I’ve attended several concerts! Granted, where I grew up was not conducive to attending concerts, but I wasn’t enough into music to care. Now I’ve been to four concerts in the past four years (possibly another one this year too).
- I willingly participated in the Hill Cumorah Pageant again and alone. Both times previous, I had been in the cast with my family, but in 2014 I made the step and joined the cast by myself. It was scary not knowing anyone, but it must have been okay since I’m going again (flying out this Friday).
- I went to Europe! I spent two months in Spain on a study abroad. Especially since I didn’t feel 100% comfortable with the language, this was a big step. Also, it was scary because I didn’t know any of my classmates before I left. One of the best decisions I made at BYU to learn Spanish and go to Spain.
- I started running and I like it! What is it with all of these athletic things that I enjoy now? I hated running in gym class, but now I’m running to get a high to deal with stress. What’s going on with me? One of the highlights of my day is putting Netflix on and watching an episode of whatever on the treadmill. Also my two Dirty Dashes. I never thought a mud run would be appealing, but I love it!!!
- I’ve met celebrities! Granted all of the celebrities I’ve met so far have been Doctor Who actors, but who cares? They’re my celebrities. I even got to interview a couple of them this past Comic Con FanX.
- I got a full time job before I’d even graduated! I’ve been working at Chrysalis for a year now, but I became a house manager in January, six months before I was done school.
I honestly can’t say which of these things surprises me the most. As lost as I feel at times, in some ways that’s what’s best. If I knew what was going on in my life, I wouldn’t have applied for this job when I did, I wouldn’t have taken the risks that I have, and I wouldn’t have gotten to know myself as well as I have. As much as I don’t think at times that I know who Spencer Ficiur is, maybe I know him better than I think. Maybe he’s more confident than I give him credit for.
“And I do this for a wise purpose; for thus it whispereth me, according to the workings of the Spirit of the Lord which is in me. And now, I do not know all things; but the Lord knoweth all things which are to come; wherefore, he worketh in me to do according to his will.” (Words of Mormon 1:7)