Feeling Trapped in Your Hometown?
Are you feeling trapped in your hometown? This post is all about feeling trapped in your hometown and how to overcome this.
This post is all about feeling trapped in your hometown.
Feeling Trapped in Your Hometown:
Growing up in a small town, it is easy to feel trapped or stuck in a cycle of feeling like you will never get out and see more of the world than just that tiny town that no one has ever heard of. I struggled with this problem my entire life. I grew up in a town of 4,000 people, surrounded by farmland, with the closest Chik-fil-a being 30 minutes away. My whole life, I was told that I would grow up going to the public schools in my town, play softball, get a scholarship to the nearest college, graduate and then move on to work in the next town over. That was definitely not my plan, but my parents worked and were well off, but they could not pay for a bigger school without scholarships, and so I thought that softball would be my way out of my town.
Things did not turn out that way. I transferred to a private school for high school and everything was great until around my sophomore year. At this point, my guidance counselor really was pushing these tiny schools because that is what most people did; they go to a small school to be showcased. I never really wanted to do that. I decided that I was tired of going to a small school. I wanted to be somewhere that I could see new faces every day, and so I was trying to play softball at all of these big schools, but I was always just a little bit too short for all of the positions I liked, and so I knew I would really have to work for it. In my sophomore year of high school, my coach told me that I would never be good enough to play at a division 1 school, and it broke my heart. I never played the same after that, and a lot of people could tell. I ended up tearing my rotator cuff my junior year, and that was pretty much the end of my softball career, but I still wanted to go to a big school, so I knew I would have to do it with my academics. I learned that to get out of a small town, you need more than one plan because people that are stuck will pull you down and try to show you that all you have is that small town, but that’s not true. Softball was my plan A so now I had to start with plan B.
I have always been really good at school; I am pretty smart; I never really had to study until I got to high school because it was a college prep school, so the classes were challenging. I would have homework for four hours every night, but I knew that the only way I would get to where I wanted to be was by doing really well in academics. At my high school, I was not considered smart. I was around the middle of my class, I knew a lot of people were more intelligent than me, but I also knew that I wasn’t far behind them. Seeing those people really made me push even harder to get away from the same old things and work to break the vicious cycle, and though it was hard, I made it happen.
In my senior year, I made it clear that I wanted to go to a big school, and I looked at some in-state schools because that was what my parents could afford and really didn’t want me going far from home. For some reason, I really wanted to go to a school at the beach. I love the beach, I love the atmosphere of a beach town, I love everything that it has to offer, so I started looking at schools at the beach. The one in-state school at the beach was nice, but a lot of people from my town went there which my parents liked because I would have familiar people, but when we went to tour the school, it was a complete miss. Before we went to tour that school, I begged my parents to let me tour one out of state school, Coastal Carolina University. They didn’t think I would like it just because of how far away from home it was but as soon as I stepped out of the car, my parents knew they would be paying out of state tuition.
My parents told me that they could try to make it work, but I needed scholarships for me to go there. I applied to around fifty different scholarships and didn’t really get many. Still, when my acceptance letter from Coastal Carolina University came in, another letter told me that I had gotten a considerable scholarship. I would finally be able to leave that small town I grew up in. I was so excited and proud of myself that I had worked hard enough to go to school out of state, and I did it with my academics instead of my athletics, and that was what I was most proud of. Even though it wasn’t my original plan, I was proud. I was so happy that I did get out of that town even though I had to deal with people telling me I would never make it and countless obstacles, I finally made it.
Coastal isn’t even a huge school, but it’s a lot bigger than where I am from, and Coastal isn’t even the end. During my time here, I have watched my older sister transform and grow. She started out teaching athletic training at a high school near my hometown, but she wanted more. Now she lives in Charlotte, works for the college football team there, and is still getting amazing opportunities. Seeing her transformation has made me want even more for myself. I decided that I want to graduate and work for a professional sports team somewhere. I know, HUGE goals, but I know I can do it. 4 years ago, if you asked me where I would be, I probably would’ve told you that I’d be going to the nearby college, and planning on working in the next town, but now I know that the world is so much bigger than that. My sister really showed me how to not be stuck and how to really put myself out there and think outside of the box, which is exactly what you have to do for a change. Change takes work, effort, and a lot of perseverance.
Being in a small town can really feel like an endless cycle of the same people, same faces, same everything, but what you do with it can change everything. I found that I got out of that town because I had it in me; I worked hard, studied for hours on end, applied for scholarships left and right, put in the work to get out, and made it happen. Nothing changes without effort, there is no reward without risk, and nothing will happen unless you make it happen yourself.
This post was all about feeling trapped in your hometown.