In college, I found myself leading a lot of different groups. I love planning and organizing events and I did so many things that I almost always had the answers to questions. My senior year of college, I received a paper plate award for “The One Who Keri’s the Team”. I love a good pun and felt super honored by the award.
And then, in August, I left everything that was familiar to me, moved across the country, and all of a sudden, I didn’t have the answers, I didn’t know who to turn to, and I felt pretty lost. I certainly wasn’t “Keri-ing” the team anymore. It took a long time for me to feel like Ventura is my home. Slowly, with lots of support from my community mates and the people at Villanova Prep, Ventura became a place that I love.
This past week, I got the opportunity to plan a Freshmen Retreat all by myself. I was so excited about the idea of taking on such a big responsibility and I was sure I could handle it. I knew I had a community of support around me and I had so many ideas and thoughts about it. However, as the day got closer, I got very, very nervous about the retreat. I had a lot of fear about how the retreat would go, if the students were going to enjoy it, if it was going to completely fail. I felt surrounded by all of this pressure for the retreat to be the best it possibly could and had so much fear that it was going to fail.
It was there, in that state of nervous anxiety, that I had to realize something. It wasn’t my retreat. I couldn’t handle the responsibility of all the blame falling on me if something went wrong. I couldn’t handle being the sole one in charge. Which is good, because I am not the one in charge. It isn’t my retreat. God was there and He was, is, and will be the one who is in charge. All of a sudden, the pressure was gone. I wasn’t the one who had to carry the retreat. I didn’t need to do everything. It wasn’t all on me.
Whether it be my community mates, the Villanova Prep community, or church community, this year has taught me to depend on God far more than myself, for which I am grateful.
Ventura, CA 2019-2020