Embracing Uncertainty

The quality of your life is in direct proportion to the amount of uncertainty you can comfortably deal with.

Tony Robbins

Hello, everyone! And welcome to this little corner of the internet that is my blog. To begin, I will give you all some information about myself. Though this list may not be very interesting to you, I think it will help you understand a little bit more about me and how I got to where I am now (which, btw, is cuddled in my bed at home, typing this post the night before I begin the greatest adventure of my life thus far). So, without further ado…

  • My name is Riley DeLavan and I am currently a junior at Wofford College.
  • When I am not at Wofford, I am at home in Sumter, SC with my parents, little brother, Landon, and two weenie dogs, Max and Jase. (Mom I know you’ll see this, so hi and I miss you already).
  • I just celebrated my 21st birthday on December 31st.
  • I absolutely love my friends and family with my whole heart.
  • You can often find me hunkered down in Milliken with a study room and LARGE cup of coffee.
  • I am severely addicted to caffeine, specifically ones of the Sweet Cream Coldbrew type at Starbucks hehe 🙂
  • I am an avid online shopper, Netflix binger, and book reader. I also love going to the movies.
  • I will admit that I am a nerd when it comes to Star Wars.
  • I am studying abroad this semester in London, England through IES’s Health Practice and Policy Program.
  • And lastly, I love the app Pinterest (a little 2013-ish I know).

In fact, that quote above is one I found when surfing through the app today. It stuck out to me immediately because it contains a word that encapsulates how I have been feeling for the past few weeks. Uncertain. Tomorrow, I leave to study in London for a little over three months. The funny thing is, though, I have NEVER been out of the country (except if you count a cruise that I went on with my family that made a brief stop in the Bahamas). I have never been on an airplane or even seen the inside of an airport. So, to say that I have been filled with a kind of uncertainty for the last few weeks is a grand understatement. So, why did I decide to embark on this crazy new journey?

Well, I always knew that I wanted to travel. I mean, who doesn’t? But this longing to see the world was actually one of the biggest reasons that I chose to attend Wofford. I knew at some point that Wofford would help me achieve this goal. And I thought I was going to achieve it when I signed up for an interim trip abroad to Belize during my sophomore year. However, life and Covid-19 had other plans for me. I was saddened that I couldn’t go, but I figured I could try again. I signed up for another interim trip that was supposed to travel to Israel this interim, and, sadly, that trip got cancelled. So, I set up a meeting with the International Programs office to see what other options I had, if any. After that meeting this past September, I knew that I’d soon be heading to London. After learning about the Health Practice and Policy Program, I was hooked. I am a Biology and English double-major and this meant that I could go abroad for the whole semester and still have all the credits necessary for graduation. I quickly called my parents to ask them what they thought, and, without hesitation, they both responded yes.

So, after that, I told all of my friends and began to prepare. Time moved by quickly and now I am sitting in my room, staring at the mess I have made while trying to fit my life into one big suitcase and two carry ons. This whole process has been uncertain – I was uncertain that I’d be accepted to the program, uncertain that my family and friends would support this last-minute decision, uncertain that I’d be capable of living life outside of my comfort bubble in the United States, and lastly, uncertain that I’d be prepared when the time came to leave. In less than 48 hours, I will officially be in London and to be honest with you, I do not quite feel ready or prepared. But somehow, I have learned to be at peace with this sort of uncertainty. I am excited to share all of my soon-to-come adventures with you and hope that you bear with me as I learn to embrace uncertainty and begin to find comfort in the uncomfortable.

Cheers, for now! (And please pray that I don’t get too lost in the airport)

Riley DeLavan