I have learned more about myself, my family, friends, and acquaintances in these two years, than the prior 24 years of my life. Life is too short to take it too seriously. If I had any doubt in my abilities before this MSW program, I sure have eliminated them through this rigorous process. I balanced my family time, my friend time, my boyfriend time, and my “me” time. I learned to function with 6 hours of sleep and to be away from my best friend (my boyfriend) for long periods of time. I have grown extremely close with my best friend (Alex Figge), to the point where I feel I have learned the true meaning of unconditional friendship. I have learned that there is no point to tolerate rudeness, meanness, and/or selfishness from other people in my life; so much so, that I have learned to walk away and drop these relationships. I have learned how important honest and meaningful communication is to the maintaining of positive relationships. I have learned that “text messaging” is the poorest and most cowardly form of communication. I have learned that I have no control of others, and I have accepted this truth. I have learned that I am ultimately in control of my happiness, my relationships, and my life. I have learned that Semi-trucks are like the notorious “honey badger”—as I swear my life flashed before my eyes on numerous occasions. I have learned the importance of “self-care”, and not because I have written hundreds of pages about it. I have learned that family (my parents, my brother, my boyfriend, my best friend) are the apples of my eye. I have learned to say “I am sorry”. I have found other people in my graduating cohort who are just like me, and have the same goals, values, and ethics; this gives me hope for my/our future. I have successfully identified my priorities, and have successfully arranged them by importance. I have become a more “cup half full” type person because of the people I have met, the experiences I’ve seen, and the support/love/encouragement/empowerment I have been given. I have learned that life is not so bad, as long as you are learning along the way! And with all of this ‘learning’ going on, I am thrilled to be where I am at in my life : living in a BEAUTIFUL home with my supportive boyfriend, with a Master’s degree behind my name, and having a family that loves me every inch of the way.