Since I Left For College, I've Learned That Distance Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

Since I Left For College, I've Learned That Distance Makes The Heart Grow Fonder

Instead of pulling me further from the ones I love, it makes my heart more full than ever before.

They say distance makes the heart grow fonder.

Since I was a little kid, I've been a true believer of this saying, as I live hours from all of my family members and growing up with that has made me overwhelmingly thankful for the times I did get to spend with them.

For my first college spring break, I decided to go home and be with my family. I don't regret this decision whatsoever. It may not be a week in the hot sun on a beautiful beach. It may not be a ski trip in the mountains.

It may just be folding laundry and running errands for Mom.

It may just be eating Rocky Road ice cream at 9pm while playing Sequence for an hour.

I've never been one to care about expensive trips to exotic places. I've never cared that my family doesn't take vacations.

What matters to me is spending time with them, whenever and wherever I get the chance to.

I love my hometown. I love driving through my beautiful town square, with the cute coffee shops and book stores.

I love the people I come home to—I love that I have people to come home to.

I love seeing old high school friends walking through town or running into them at restaurants.

I'd rather be in the wonderful place I call home than be in the mountains or on the beach.

I'd rather go see a movie with my best friends in our small and sticky theater than have sand in my toes.

I'd rather eat breakfast in my favorite one-of-a-kind hometown restaurant than in some fancy hotel.

I'd rather spend every day with my family members than spend an enormous wad of cash getting away from them.

I've always been a family girl, but since leaving for college last fall, I see myself counting the days until I get to come home.

I love Iowa State University and the home I have here, but nothing compares to coming home to the streets I know so well.

Nothing compares to taking the back roads with my best friends and blaring music.

Nothing compares to Mom's cooking and Dad's movie-picking abilities.

And nothing will ever compare to seeing my fur babies after months apart.

Nothing is as beautiful as seeing improvements in my town every time I come back.

Distance isn't always ideal, but I'm thankful that instead of pulling me further from the ones I love, it makes my heart more full than ever before.

Cover Image Credit: Larry Tseng on Unsplash

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it


Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

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A Poem: My Mother

In honor of Mother's Day, that was on the 12th, here is a poem dedicated to my mother.


To the only person who can be my mentor, friend, and leader at the same time

To someone who would make me read my own books before bedtime

And puts everything down to make sure there is a smile on my face

To the person that I find impossible to ever replace.

Somehow you are always right even when it seems wrong

And when the worst does happen, how do you still manage to stay so strong?

I'm not only impressed but inspired by you

Knowing that somehow you'll always know me better than I do.

When I'm frustrated and annoy you, you simply try to understand me

Because you have always told me that even when you can't understand, plain acceptance is the key

You have listened to all my laughs, heard me cry, and felt my emotions like they were your own

You are the only reason I am joyous and the security I need to know that I am never alone.

To the only person who has truly taught me how to live

And watched me grow and make mistakes yet still knows how to forgive

Because that's who she is, certainly not like any other

There are many women but none like my own mother.

Happy Mother's Day!

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