You receive your acceptance letter in the mail, and for the first time, it all feels real to you now.
It's starting to sink in. Hard. The life you currently love and feel comfortable in is about to change in new and exciting ways that you may or may not be prepared for. You are so nervous but so ready. You've been ready. In just a couple of months, you'll be packing up your stuff, leaving the people you care about behind and moving away to begin your own personal college journey. All on your own. A journey that will mark a huge, important chapter in your life.
The months of waiting will turn into weeks, and suddenly, you'll be up at 6 a.m. with butterflies because it's move-in day. The day you've been waiting for. It's finally here.
Your parents and brother will help haul all your belongings to your new, 16x12 foot room that will now be your home. The best home. A home holding so many new and exciting memories to be made. You'll see a sea of unfamiliar faces just as overwhelmed as yours. You'll stare at your bed in awe, wondering how in the world your dorm-provided twin mattress will ever be comfortable enough for you. But trust me, it will. Along with everything else. Along with the newness and unfamiliar feelings that accompany your foreign surroundings. You'll start to wonder what it feels like to come home and lay here, after a fun night with friends, quietly staring at your ceiling until you fall asleep. Your new, unfamiliar ceiling. A ceiling that has covered so many other weary heads before yours, and will shelter you in the same way.
You'll wonder how you can possibly fit all your clothes in one small closet and three small dresser drawer drawers, but you will. You'll make it work. You always do. You'll get used to tip-toeing around your dorm room with your phone flashlight on before bed, because your roommate has an 8 a.m. and you can't wake her up. You'll get used to the long nights and early mornings. You'll get used to breathing the unfamiliar air. You'll adapt to the new and small space. Because it will be the best year of your life. Newness and all.
And you will never forget it.
You'll start to meet friends in your hall. You'll bond over the likeness of missing home, and sometimes missing that familiar structure it provides. You'll build trust. You'll borrow each other's belongings. You'll lean on one another and share difficulties. You'll adapt together. You'll work through the days that are harder than others. And those girls will not just become your new best friends, but your family. Laughing, crying, and confiding in one another will ground you. It will comfort you. You'll stay up until 2 in the morning talking about life, boys, and classes, and even though you have to wake up early for a 9 a.m. chem class, you won't care. You'll happily sit there and blink away the sleepiness because nights like those will be worth it. Sitting on your dorm room floor in pajamas with the girls who make it home will be worth it. Creating lasting memories will be worth it. Because they will become your sisters. You will share this whole experience together. You will go through things together. And you will love every second of it, together.
They'll walk in your room with tears and you won't even have to ask if they're OK, because you'll know. So you'll pat the edge of your bed and tell them to sit, letting them spill their bad day. That's how you'll get through the hard times. Together. Because helping each other through the hurt will be how you create such a special bond with one another. But then on other nights, you'll hear erupting laughter echoing throughout the halls. When you barge in to find the source of these giggles and all your friends are sprawled out together on the floor watching ridiculous videos, laughing until they cry, you'll remember just how lucky you are to have them.
Surrounded by people who somehow know how to your best days even better. And some nights, although you're trying to sleep, you won't even be irritated when you hear their loud voices booming through the hall late at night. Because you'll know they got home safe. And you'll remember that tomorrow will be another day.
You borrow clothes, borrow makeup, borrow straighteners, share advice, share love, but most importantly: share a bond. So when your suitemate is showering at 3 in the morning after finishing an all-night project, don't get annoyed. Because when you go in to talk to her, you'll realize just how fortunate you are to be living across from your best friend. There's no one else you'd rather be having 3 a.m. bathroom talks with, even if you do have an early class to attend. So you suck it up and enjoy it anyway.
That's the fun in appreciating all of life's simple moments.
So even when you're tired and can't go back to sleep, it's OK to make some pasta, sit on the bed, and just talk. Because it'll be 4 a.m., and you know you have to wake up at 9, and that's OK. Because the best feeling in the world is knowing that small memories like those are the ones that are priceless. So soak them all up. Appreciate them. Sleep will be made-up, but time together won't.
So collect it all. Cherish it. Make it memorable. Go above and beyond to get everything you can from this experience. Because you will remember it forever. And you will never forget the girls who helped make it so special.
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