(Caution: be aware that all of the feelings in my body have flowed into this text.)

  • Thank you for making me feel welcomed.
    Like everyone else in the world, I tend to be awkward around people I just meet and don’t know how to socialize correctly, due to my irrational brain constantly overthinking about if people like my first impression. College was no exception, of course, because I had just now left the security blanket that was my high school class. Now, there I was, in a room with hundreds of people, not knowing if I should make an attempt to say hello or try and shuffle out of the room unnoticed. But no, I didn’t need to do either, because I was approached quickly by numerous people and accepted into a group that I am still very close with today. Thus, thank you for that first meeting and making me feel welcomed into a place that felt so foreign to me.

  • Thank you for showing me how to live away from my parents.
    When I had my first roommate in college, she and I grew up together and knew each other very well (and still do), so it made it easier for the move to college. But even then, since I’m very much a home body, it was hard for me. She, along with my current roommates, showed me how to act like a proper human and be able to function on my own and with others in our own living environment. I thought of it more as a “growing up” than a “finally moving away from home transition” when college started.

  • Thank you for being there when my heart broke the first time.
    I’ll let you know that having my heart “broken” isn’t something that is constant, but it’s happened quite a few times while I’ve been in college. There was one moment that particularly comes to mind however, and in that moment, I had an army of people ready to be at my aid. If you’d like to know, it was my first breakup that spiraled one of the many emotional roller coasters of my life, and for a long time after that, my friends spent a long time rebuilding who they were used to seeing. I saw it as a blessing and because of that, I thank them. I always will. Because having that stability was something I needed.
  • Thank you for making me feel safe.
    If you know me at all, you know that I have a knack for being jumpy and skittish. Trust me when I say it isn’t put on and that if I heard something in the middle of the night, I’m sure it’s an attacker who has come in and tried to take me away. Safety is something huge for me, and I crave it like an anti-drug. A lot of that had to do with finally moving hours away from my family and relying heavily on my friends to protect me, should anything ever happen. They do that without knowing and I treasure that more than they know.
  • Thank you for helping me feel compassion for other people.
    I feel like a dork just mentioning this one, because I can be very overemotional at times, but this point is valid. Some of the instances and stories that have been shared with me are intense and heavy, but it helped me become close with many of the friends that I have today. I swear that I’m repeating myself with all of these points, but compassion is big for me. It truly is. And thank you for letting me express it towards you.
  • Thank you for being there when I was stressed.
    School gets the best of me, and it always has. The stress sometimes is almost unbearable, and for some reason, you have decided to lift me up and help me through the times where I’ve been crying so hard that I couldn’t see straight. Maybe it’s the way you guys come about things, or maybe it’s the words that are said. I don’t know how you do it and probably never will, but I truly enjoy and cherish how you are able to take out of the situations that I’ve created in my brain (mostly about failing school) and been able to calm me.
  • Thank you for letting me love you.
    With this last point, I’ve been staring at this computer for a few minutes, trying to figure out how to tell you how appreciative I am that you’ve not only accepted me into your life, but you’ve let me love you. You’ve not only seen my struggle and my failing, but you’ve allowed me to come in and lift you up and appreciate you and let me love you as much as my heart can take.
  • And just so you know,
    It was honestly so hard to try and write the right words for this article. It’s truly overwhelming for me, because how can I actually put into words all of the good that you’ve done for me? I’ve tried. I’ve written and rewritten this article time and time again, just trying to touch the surface of what you’ve done for my life.

    I cannot.

    I’ll say it again. I’ll say it many times. I love you. And I am so thankful for the people who have come into my life through college and let me stay there, even though I’ve made several mistakes.

    That’s what it comes down to. You guys have accepted me and made me into the person I am today, as corny as that sounds, and I really do love you all.