Everyone knows that moving away on your own for the first time can be scary. It's one of the first things people tell you when you're preparing to move away from home and into college. When I think back on how I felt on move-in day, I realize it was pretty similar to how I was on the first day of kindergarten: confused, scared, and clinging to my mom. Back then it was cute, but now I probably looked a bit desperate. Most of all, though, I didn't know what was going to happen next. This makes sense looking at what situations I was in, but the uncertainty of it all topped everything. I had absolutely no idea what to expect, and with that it's even worse because I didn't know if I was going to be able to adapt well or not. That was a bit over a month ago, and this past weekend I finally got to see my parents again since I got here, and let me tell you, it was pretty relieving.
The first thing that I felt was like a weight being lifted off my shoulders. Over the small amount of time I'd been here, I found myself pressured to act different from who I am back home, seeing as Chicago and Pella are two very different cities. When I was around my family again, I felt the need to be different go away; I was finally 100% comfortable, even if it was only a short while.
I didn't really know how I'd feel that first moment I saw them again. I was excited for sure, but I wasn't sure if I'd feel an emotion excessive enough to cry. (I didn't—which is probably good because my mom would've cried and no one needs that). It was like an overwhelming sense of calm washed over me and it was just like how it was before. We acted the same, joked the same, did everything I expected but it was more. From having it every day to not having it all was a major shift, but to having it again for a while brought me back and kept me grounded. I missed having that normal atmosphere around me so much I didn't realize what I was actually missing. Of course, I missed my mom and dad, but how I could be myself around them and just having that sense of familiarity was what I needed.
Going to school out of state definitely makes the whole situation more difficult on both ends. It also means I don't get to see them that often, or get that home-y feeling as much as I'd like, but it is what it is. I'll always need my parents wherever I go in life, but I'm also proud of myself for being able to take care of myself and realize that it's okay to be on my own. They want to see me do well and I want to make them proud, so while I know it'll be hard at first, the success at the end will only be an even greater win for both sides.
Spending time with family was an everyday feeling for me. Now that I've experienced time away from home it makes me realize how little time we all actually have. Every moment we spend together should be appreciated since we get so few of them. Does it sometimes feel like they might be smothering you? Sure. May be hovering a little too much? Of course, but what else are parents going to do? (Love you!)