(written a year ago)

Here I am...sitting in Brigham Square just like I have so many times before. I've been here on multiple occasions...as a little girl, as a teenager, as a college freshman, as a girl falling in love, and, now, as a full-grown, pregnant twenty-one year old girl (I still can't call myself a woman...it sounds weird) graduating from the college of her dreams in just two short weeks. Sometimes if I think about it too much, tears well up in my eyes. Mostly because I'm happy. Happy about what this place has given me. But also sad...because I've had some of the best times of my life with some of the best people I've ever known, right here on this campus...and that is a chapter that soon will close.

You see, BYU is not just a school to me. It has been a huge part of my life. The experiences that my parents had here set our family up to be successful, spiritually and temporally. 

A few memories I never want to forget...

1. Sitting with my parents in the Heritage Halls courtyard as we said goodbye and thanking them for everything they had done to get me to that point.
2. Gaining the freshman 15 when I never thought it would happen to me. I guess goldfish, toast, and mint Hershey's kisses don't constitute a balance diet...who knew?
3. Having lunch with Jason and Matthew every Friday freshman year, some of the best friends a girl could ever have.
4. Dance parties with my roommates in the pint-sized kitchen of our first apartment. 
5. Watching cars get stuck in a particularly icy spot right outside our apartment window with Marissa, Micaela, and Lindsay. Hours of free entertainment.
6. Becoming friends with Rachel, who has taught me more about caring for others than she will ever know (and who also contributed immensely to my freshman 15 by feeding me Oreos every night as we watched Pretty Little Liars). 
7. The south campus flight of stairs that seemed higher than Mt. Everest.
8. The sporting events, where the fans are loud and the fight song is heard.
9. Taking the LDS Marriage & Family class on campus, which I took exactly one semester before I met my eternal companion.
10. Watching, out of the corner of my eye, my (then) future husband walk into BNSN W111, and sit right next to me.
11. The blocks surrounding campus where we held hands and talked about our future. 
12. The lawn outside my chemistry classroom where we met up and couldn't stop talking long enough to actually go to class. 
13. Celebrating with my hot fiancè the day he made the BYU football team.
14. Moving into our first apartment together in the fall right across the street from this beautiful campus.
 15. Making lifelong friendships with couples who have been so kind to us.

This time is so bittersweet. It is sad that I will never be a student again in my life, and that this experience, which I waited my whole life for, is coming to an end. On the other hand, I'm happy.  I've worked really hard to get to this point and am excited for what the future holds for me. I will never forget the feeling I have when I am here. I felt it as a child, and now as an adult. This sure is a special place, and there is no other campus in the world like it.

xo, Kiely