How Have I Changed In The Past Two Years?

How have you changed in the past two years

How have I changed in the past two years? Hmm. When I first read this prompt, I didn’t think that I had changed that much, but upon reflection, I’ve come further than I thought.

Two years ago, I was just going into my second term as a first-year university student. I had thrown myself head first into my first term and falling into a world of excessive drinking, false friendships and uncertainty. I spent the vast majority of Freshers/Welcome Week back and forth between spewing my guts out after one too many vodka shots and crying down the phone to my mum about how awful it was there. I was told that in Freshers I would make best friends, but in all honestly I don’t remember half of the people I hung out with that week.

I came to university as quite a new Christian, but I realised quite quickly that I was turning into one of those hypocrites that I had been so desperate to avoid becoming. Yes, I got involved with a church quickly and I sought after friendships with Christians, but away from all that, back at my flat I shared with seven other people, I knew I was still stuck in my old ways. I began to feel challenged on the way I was acting and the things I was doing and whether or not they were making me a good witness for Christ. I knew that I had to change.

At Momentum 2015, a Christian summer festival, Joel and I went to a seminar about relationships. One of the things that really stuck with me – other than that it’s really important that you speak to your partner with kindness, ha. We had a good giggle at that one before back to bickering – was that in order to have a completely fulfilling relationship or marriage, you need to be completely satisfied as a single person. I have never known what it is to be a single Christian, so within the past two years, the Lord has definitely used that time to allow me to flourish and become my own person and experience my own faith. I got involved with the Christian Union and I even co-led it last year, which was a big step in my faith. Being such a new and inexperienced Christian, I didn’t think I had much to offer or could cope with the responsibility but the Lord doesn’t give us more than we can handle.

Now, my faith is stronger than ever.

While my fiction writing is taking some time out, I have found a new creative outlet in blogging. I was encouraged to start a blog after I mentioned the idea but not really sure what I would do with it. As I’m sure a lot of writers can testify to, I often don’t know what I’m writing about until I sit down and write it. Sure, plans are great, but once I start writing, if I get a sudden train of thought, I have to run with it. For me, blogging has been an exciting new project and I have learnt so much already. My hobby compliments Joel’s photography and it’s so much to be able to work together on new projects. I hope that this year, however, I can find the time and motivation to pour some of my efforts into writing fiction again. To publish a novel has been one of my biggest dreams and I would like to make that a reality.

In March 2014, I was healed from PTSD during a counselling session. I’d struggled with symptoms of depression for about three years, and lived quite unhappily, not knowing what it was that I had. Now, I am happier, stronger and I have never felt that I couldn’t face the day, no matter what has been thrown at me.

This time, I’m going into my last second term ever. I have loved my university experience, but I can’t wait to start my life properly. I can’t wait to come back and throw myself into the next season that the Lord has for me. I am not the same person that arrived in Nottingham in 2013 as a person who had no idea how the next three would pan out. When I leave, I won’t even be the same person  I am now, writing this. I am changed.

We are ever-changing, ever-evolving.

Have you had any life-changing experiences in the past two years? How have you changed, personally? Chat with me below!

 

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  • Wow! What a powerful story, Emma! Love reading testimonies like this because they’re real and challenging. Even though I knew the Lord at this time – In high school, I had a group of friends (who I’m still friends with and love) and we would all get together and drink and occasionally go to a small party. I too, was the girl taking shots and shots of who knows what, and to be honest, I’m shocked I never got messed up by it. But it’s cool to see now, because I can get together with my friends and have a drink or two, but never anymore for drunkenness isn’t where I should be. It’s crazy to see a witnessing tool in the most unlikely of places.

    Anyway! But 2 years ago…gee I’m not sure. Definitely something I’ll have to think on.

    • Thank you so much, Summer. Unfortunately I have learned the hard way in a lot of situations, but in some ways I’m grateful because they’ve been real learning curves and I’ve begun to understand God’s grace in more intimate ways. Thank you for sharing that about yourself, I really appreciate it!

  • Awesome! God works in us constantly, even if we don’t see it at the time.
    I don’t really know who Joel is…did you two stay together? haha. Sorry if I am behind.

    Two years ago, I was preparing for my wedding to my husband. I lost my job on January 1st, but that was ok because I was able to move back home and work on wedding stuff with my mom, which was an AMAZING blessing!
    I honestly haven’t changed as much as I wish I had. I’ve learned A LOT about myself in the past two years, but I am still learning what to do with all that I’ve learned. haha.

    • Yes – Joel is my boyfriend and we are still together. Sorry, I realise now I didn’t make that overly clear. I was trying to demonstrate how I realised while being at university, that’s been my single season and the place where God has really grown me.

      That’s awesome. I love that He can take our pain and turn it for our good! But that’s so cool though because there’s so much growth material there!

      • No, I just wanted to make sure I had it right 🙂

        And thanks! Very true!

  • This is such a great post, Emma; it’s awesome to learn more about you through this. I was just thinking about how much has changed in my life in the past two years – I was just starting my last semester of college, was about to get engaged, and was going through the process of applying to graduate school. Now I’ve been married and in my career for a year and a half, and didn’t end up going to grad school! I feel like I’ve really grown up over that time and at the same time, have spent some time longing for the more simple days of being in school, haha. Enjoy it while you can!

    • It’s amazing how life can happen so fast! In all honesty, I can’t wait to really start life after university. It looks like you’ve come a long way in the past two years!

  • Just love this post, Emma! I see that you speak from the heart, and that is such a beautiful quality to have. So happy to hear things have worked so well for you over the last two years and that you are happier than ever! Glad to have stumbled upon your blog, I am a new blogger and I can totally relate to flow with the train of thoughts part 🙂 Hope all the success to you in 2016!
    xx, Kusum | http://www.sveeteskapes.com