I moved out of my college dorm today and it was the hardest thing I've done all of the quarantine. College is rough- late nights, and a never-ending amount of homework you didn't realize you had. It's a lot of work, but it is life-changing.
If you have the ability to go away to school, I suggest you give it a try. Do everything you can and make the most of every dollar you spend to get there. In my mind, the more activities you're in, the more cords you get when you walk across the stage. Plus, free decorations for your office one day. No matter what you want to study, or think you want to study, it will change. You're going to add something to the list or take something off, or if you're anything like me and go to a liberal arts school, you'll major in two things and minor in another and change what you want three times before the first semester is over. None of that matters though, because you'll find your way eventually.
I graduated high school in 2017; I was so scared to leave home that I cried almost every day leading up to orientation. When my parents and I got to school, I thought I was going to throw up. They dropped me off and that was it- almost. I spent half the day doing paperwork and meeting my small group for the weekend, then when I got back to my dorm, my parents were there, waiting. Everything was all set up, my bed was made and my books were on my desk. It all felt so perfect, I knew this was going to be the best four years of my life.
I felt so safe and at home on campus, I was always an outgoing person, but it usually took me a few weeks to warm up to people. Here, I was already hot and ready to talk to anyone who would listen, I had found my home. But now it's time to say goodbye, already.
If you are confused, yes, I graduated in three years. It was hard, but saved me a boatload of money. I'll tell that story another day. It went in a flash, some amazing times and some not so amazing. A French class I was "advised" to drop, an honors English class where I didn't read, and an acting class where I realized that maybe I could put my empathy to some use! No matter how poorly I did, I loved every minute. I graduated with honors and got on the dean's list in the final stretch, who would have guessed.
It feels like I just got here, pulled up to the main part of campus, and had no idea where I was. Now I can walk the campus with my eyes closed. I can't believe I had to say goodbye the way we all did. It hurts that I had to empty my dorm with out a soul around, no goodbyes, and no hugs. I was in denial when it all started, and I was convinced we were all coming back to campus after a few weeks, so I packed NOTHING. I walked into my apartment and entered a mess, a dusty mess. I immediately was reminded of all the memories I had throughout the year, and all the memories I never got the chance to fulfill. When everything was in the car, and all the dust was pushed into a pill with an old Calvin Klein bag (never thought to bring a broom), I just sat in the living room and cried. My mom asked me what my favorite memory in the apartment was and what was my favorite thing overall.
My favorite memory in my apartment came to me instantly, the night before going on a trip with the cast of our fall show, almost everyone came to my apartment and slept over, we had a wonderful time together. Singing way too loud, eating, dancing, and in the morning, I made everyone waffles. I became the official mom, and they were my family. I was so proud to have a group of friends like them. My favorite memory overall was the vocal lessons I took for three semesters over the course of three years. My vocal coach was more than my professor; he was my friend and someone I knew I could tell the good, bad, and ugly too. There were disagreements at times, I've disappointed him a hand full of times and learned from them, and I've grown into a more confident and well-rounded person because of him.
I loved sitting in the caf drinking diet coke and reading; I loved sitting in the Center For Arts lobby and watching people pass, I loved so much from my college experience, that I wish I stayed another year.
But I didn't stay, I decided to go, and now it's time to say goodbye to being a student and hello to a lifetime of being an alumna. Even though it feels like I just got here, it's time for me to go and new fresh faces to experience hopefully all the same.