Calvin College: My Unexpected Twist

Calvin College was never in the plan.

For seventeen years I anticipated and researched and considered all the things I could do after graduating from high school.  Will I take a year off and try to figure things out before going to college?  Will I go out-of-state?  How about a public university in the Upper Peninsula?  I can major in English and become an editor at a publishing company.  That seems like a solid career for someone who excels in spelling and grammar.

Or maybe not.

If you can’t tell already, I am a planner.  I like to figure things out and make sure everything runs smoothly, that there aren’t any last-second decisions to be made… Everything must line up perfectly.

Last year, the plan was to attend a state school: Big campus. Low expectations. Plenty of room to blend in. And at a bargain price.

But last April, I made an out-of-character, quick decision.  I chose Calvin College: Tiny campus. High expectations. Plenty of involvement. And at twice the cost.

The craziest part is, I made the right decision.

I first visited the campus last January.  The traditional campus felt peaceful and calm, unlike the larger universities I had visited the past year.  My tour guide was more friendly, more welcoming, and more honest.  That day, I finally had my “aha” moment.  Things clicked.  This wasn’t the plan, but it was the next step for me.

After a whirlwind of financial aid, loan applications, advising appointments, and summer orientation, I only feel stronger about my decision to attend Calvin.

It’s not easy to leave the place I’ve always called “home.”  This two-story farmhouse with all of its charms – and nuisances – is where I spent my entire childhood.  It’s where I learned to walk and talk.  It’s where I spent hours writing silly stories that only a parent could understand.  It’s where I learned to love cats, coffee, and chocolate.  It is, and always will be, my home.

But as I pack up all my clothes, books, and knickknacks, and as I watch my existence slowly fade from this old house, it is comforting to know how precious my new home already is to me.  My family there will not be flesh and blood, but they will be family.  And I won’t have a world of memories surrounding me, but I will have memories.

It will never be the same.  After I move out, things will never go back to the way they were.  But I have found home at Calvin.

And that is worth more than seventeen years of planning.

“You can make many plans,But the LORD’s purpose will prevail.”

Proverbs 19:21


10 thoughts on “Calvin College: My Unexpected Twist

  1. You are such a good writer.


  2. The the Lord guide your soul and your mind, body and spirit will follow. G-d bless you in all you do.


  3. Your whole life, this has been our ultimate goal for you. We desire that our children will grow up to be strong, independent thinkers, who love the Lord and are respectful, loving, and make wise decisions. Now that you have arrived at this point in your life, I am proud of the young lady that you have, and are still becoming, but that conflict arrives with it; my heart breaks at the thought of losing you, of having you leave the safety and security of your lifelong home. For me, this is that long walk down the driveway, holding your hand, telling you that everything will be OK, and allowing you to walk up those steps of the bright, yellow bus, then waving back at you through the back window as your journey takes you to your next destination in life.

    The smile on my face is genuine, my love for you is real, but I will miss you more than you can ever know. From the day that you were born, you have truly lived up to your namesake.

    I love you, my precious daughter. Go out and make your new home. Become who God always intended you to be.



  4. Oh my goodness…tears of joy and remembrance.
    This is precious and honoring, Allie & Dave.

    May Adonai surround you with His love today and those to follow as you all enter His newest plan for you to grow and flourish on His paths.



  5. Beautiful Allie.What a lovely woman you have become and are still developing into to.We are praying for all of you.Love you so much.Grandpa and Grandma.


  6. Oh Allie. I still remember the first time I saw you and you looked like a fragile porcelain doll. You had rosy cheeks, and sweet little lips. I was just a kid myself then, but I thought you were the most beautiful baby in the world!

    I am so proud of you and the woman you have become. When I look at you, and your posts, pictures, and plans….I cannot help but feel the God-given potential within you. He has such amazing plans for your life. This is a big step into a new world, but it is only the first step among many more that you will take. Keep doing what you have been doing, and follow God to your destiny. He has big plans for you! I love you dearly and I am so pleased to see how wonderful you turned out. Your parents have done a phenomenal job raising you, but God has made you such a unique individual and you are who He created you to be. I am so excited for you!

    Love you always!

    Your “big” cousin,



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