After being the senior in high school, the very top of the food chain, starting over as a lost freshman in college can be really difficult. Going to the right class on time, doing the laundry without filling the laundry room with suds, figuring out where the printers are in the library, and living with people you have never met before quickly become new challenges that you may not feel prepared for. To be honest, I don't think anyone is truly prepared. No matter how many boxes of Ramen you pack or how many maps you draw for yourself to get to class, there will always be moments where you feel completely lost. Of course, you will not feel this way forever, but if you have been facing a new challenge recently, hang in there and laugh when you make mistakes. It's going to be okay!
A complete lack of understanding of what is going on
Maybe I am exaggerating slightly, but I am a new freshmen in college and I can attest that I have no idea what is going on about 98% of the time. At this point college to me feels like a completely different world. Living with people you have never met before, walking across campus just to eat, and having classes at all different times of the day are all very new experiences. The result? Complete and utter confusion. The thing is that everyone is feeling the exact same way. So, stick with the people you click with right away and be confused together. It's better than being confused and alone too.
Be ready to be jealous for no reason
FOMO (fear of missing out) is a very real thing, especially when it is so easy to compare your new college experience to your friends' college experience back at home. College might not be so much fun for you right away. Don't put unnecessary pressure on yourself to be having a "good time" like all your friends at home who seem to be having a grand old time. The truth is social media can be really deceiving. Just because one of your friends took a selfie with some new people at college and posted it on snapchat does not mean that they are already having the time of their life. One of the mental health presentations I listened to at orientation used this meme to describe jealousy and social media, so of course I had to share.
At first it's going to be very overwhelming
I am not going to lie to you. The only thing I could think about during my first two days of orientation was how much I wanted to go home. So much new information is being thrown at you, and you probably do not retain anything that is said to you. Not to mention that you probably do not know anyone. Meeting new people, trying to remember countless new names, and keeping up small talk that can sometimes be a little awkward at first is exciting but also exhausting. These feeling will probably pass sooner than you think so don't stress too much about it. Everything is going to work out.
It's all fun and games until classes start
I don't know about you, but my freshmen orientation, despite the awkward getting-to-know-you phase, ended up being really fun. We played games outside, had dances, went in bouncy houses, and ate animal crackers. We essentially were experiencing summer camp but as eighteen year olds, and I loved it. Unfortunately, orientation couldn't last forever. All of a sudden it was Sunday night, and my roommates and I sat in our rooms staring at the campus map and trying to figure out how we were ever going to get to our classes on time. The first day of classes was definitely intimidating, but everyone is just as intimidated as you are if not more. So turn to the person next to you and say hello. It can't hurt.
Hopefully these memes made you feel a little better about being a new freshman in college or maybe you are starting a completely different phase in your life. We all feel lost when we start something new, but if you were able to walk into a big classroom with all new faces around you as a kindergartener than you can do the same when you are older, too! Don't forget to keep your sense of humor when you feel like you are failing, and good luck on your new adventure!