some honest updates.

Hello my friends.

Right now as a college student, writing is my therapy.

It’s the best way for me to purge myself of any depression or sadness weighing on my heart. When I’m not writing and there’s silence on my social media, it probably means I’m doing well.

However, that doesn’t make for the best blog.

To be fair to myself, I don’t think all my posts are as dramatic as I believe them to be. (That’s because most don’t make the cut to be published.)

But I’d rather be more consistent and upbeat with my posts, because the small readership I have of family friends and Facebook friends seem to enjoy knowing how my life is going.

Well here are some honest updates. I’ll start with the bad and end with the good.

~ ~ ~

My fall semester of college sucked. I was alone basically 24/7, and despite my introvert tendencies, that much isolation is not good for my soul. Toward the end of the semester I also learned that being in a relationship doesn’t necessarily relieve loneliness. In my case it actually made it worse.

Around November I began to miss a small school environment. (I reread this post way too much in reminiscence of my high school classmates.) I missed being able to talk to my teachers about real life. I missed learning from men and women who cared about me as a person. So I began considering transferring out of UF next year.

My boyfriend and I broke up over Christmas break. (The day before New Years Eve actually. yeah. because life is fabulous like that.) And while we hadn’t been dating that long, it was basically the worst possible ending to my semester.

After the breakup I had a week left before school to contemplate dropping out of UF entirely. I was devastated and not eager to return to a lonely campus.

Finally my mother, (my brilliant, brilliant mother), suggested taking online classes so that I could remain enrolled at UF but still spend the majority of my time in Orlando. When spring semester rolled around I had only one class, one hour a week, on campus.

(So for my Orlando friends, that’s why you’ve seen me around so much.)

I was prepared for an awful semester, but God had far better things planned for me.

My first week back I had some heart to heart conversations with roommates that I’d avoided having during the fall. Those conversations opened doors and cleared up so many misunderstandings. I haven’t felt lonely since.

My friendships with my roommates and with others I’ve connected with at UF have grown so much in the past two months. Road trips to concerts, shopping trips, and Sherlock marathons have made this semester wonderful.

A dear friend of mine invited me to the campus ministry Navigators and I’ve absolutely loved it! The organization is full of people who are totally committed to God and to growing as Christians.

Cru was nice during the fall, and I met lots of wonderful people, but Cru has a much heavier focus on evangelism than on growing the Christians it already has. So for someone who needed a solid foundation to rest in, being a part of Cru wore me out more than it filled me up.

Speaking of solid foundations, Greenhouse Church in Gainesville is one of my favorite places on Earth. It is filled with the most sincere, passionate Christians I have ever met. If you don’t feel welcomed at Greenhouse, you probably just haven’t spoken to someone yet.

For those in Gainesville who haven’t been to Greenhouse’s Breakthrough weekend, GO GO GO. Most of it is secret, but I can promise you that it is unlike any church or youth group retreat I have ever been on in. (In the best way possible.) It’s how I chose to spend this February 14th. I’ve never felt so loved on Valentine’s Day.

Imagine, a retreat where the entire focus is on seeking God and healing. No crazy games or silliness, but instead powerful teaching, genuine openness to the Holy Spirit, and prayer with volunteers who truly cared about those attending the retreat.

Things have been wonderful this semester, but I am still seriously considering transferring. I have a phone interview this Friday with the particular college I have my heart set on. I’ll keep you all updated when I hear back from them.

~ ~ ~

This post is already too long, so I’ll summarize by saying that God has come through for me again and again this semester when I least expected him too.

I do apologize for any impression I may have given that I’m depressed. I was depressed for a time, (pretty natural after a breakup), but for the most part it’s just that when I’ve been happy, I haven’t been blogging. Something I’m hoping to change very soon!

~ Jaime Lynn

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P.S. (Feel free to sign up for blog post updates via email by scrolling to the top and looking for my face!)

your friendly neighborhood scatter-brained artist, sweet tea enthusiast, and dedicated Publix shopper.

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