At eighteen years old I was still young and naive about leaving home. Athens, Ohio was going to be this wonderful place where I always had a good time and I would be unstoppable. Literally, unstoppable. How could anyone tell me what to do in my own dorm? That was my space... DUH. I have family in both Pennsylvania and Michigan so going to school seemed like no big deal to me. My mom and dad always packed us in the car to see family, to me three and a half hours didn't seem too far. Along with changes within myself, many personal relationships changed as well over the course of this year.
Mom, my number one fan and my gossip buddy was hours away from me! Of course, we talk on the phone, shoot each other texts and silly screenshots, but it's not the same. It can be difficult to maintain that "close as can be" relationship over the phone. I wouldn't consider myself to have gotten homesick until very far into the semester. There is nothing like your mom taking care of you when you're sick! Our time apart has only made our time spent together more special, our laughs a little louder, and our hugs a little tighter.
Ryan, leaving your BEST FRIEND behind made making new friends a little awkward. I felt like I was cheating on our friendship, we literally have tattoos for each other and now we have to make new best friends?!?! Our contact with each other would decrease and pick back up when one of us had something juicy to talk about. She was busy with school and soccer, and I with school and friends here. At the end of the day, we always knew we had each other back through thick and thin, that's how best friends are. We could understand that every minute we had couldn't be spent on the phone finding out what was going on hours away. I have to tell you though, there are always a few tears saying see you soon when we head back to school.
Tyler, going into college in a relationship was definitely a difficult road ahead for the two of us, but we cared enough for each other to take on that road together. The first ten months of our relationship were spent within 20 minutes of each other and most of those ten months we were by each other's side. By no means was it easy to not see you every day when had the freedom to do so over summer. As the months passed, times got easier and harder and we are still figuring out how to make the distance work. It's a whole different level of effort with a significant other. I hope for better and easier times, only the happiest future.
God, coming to school I wanted to reconnect with God and become more spiritual. I had looked at some options on campus but didn't make the time needed for the one person I should have. I regret this decision the most, which I rarely regret in life. College feels like I'm moving 100 miles an hour and I can't catch a break. There is a heavyweight I cannot lift on my own and the only guidance I can ask for at this moment is yours. I know that my change in relationship with you is the answer.
At the end of the day, I'm thankful for all this year has brought me. With summer coming I hope to spend quality time with those I love and let them know how much I appreciate them.