I want to live here, I thought.
It was February of my senior year of high school, and I was sitting in the Prewitt Van Guilder movie room, being introduced to the wonderful thing that is "Mean Girls." I'd already known I wanted to go to Corban, but Corban Experience was just a good idea in general. It would solidify my decision and, plus, a scholarship!
But the most defining moment of that weekend was when I decided which dorm would be my home for the next two years.
PVG scooped up a scared girl who'd never been away from home more than a week in her life. The community took me in. I belonged there, in a way I'd never belonged anywhere else. The people of PVG were there for me when I was diagnosed with type one diabetes freshman year and had to take a semester off. They were there when I struggled sophomore year.
PVG had always been there. But, this year, I left them.
It wasn't a big decision at the time. I found three friends who wanted to live in a quad in Aagard, and I went with it. I didn't realize what a culture shock it would be until I moved in.
Don't get me wrong, I love Aagard. It's so chill, something I didn't often get in PVG. In fact, I was kind of tired of the lack of chill by the end of last year. I wanted to get away. But I don't feel the same sense of community that I used to. This isn't the dorm atmosphere in the least, it's just...
About a month ago, I began making plans to move back to PVG last year. I would tell people, "I'm going home!" And, as far as my college living experience goes, I'm quite convinced my heart will always belong to the halls of Prewitt.
But something didn't feel right.
I felt as though I were speaking too soon, that maybe I didn't necessarily need to go back to PVG. And finding someone to room with was proving quite difficult.
Then it hit me as I walked into rehearsal one day: Home is not a place. It's the people you're with. It's always been so, and I just haven't seen it.
I am coming home when I'm coming home to my family on Sunday afternoons. I'm coming home when I walk into my quad and my roommates. I'm coming home when I revisit my hall from last year. I'm coming home when I'm with the cast I've come to love over the past few months.
I didn't care where I was, as long as I loved who I was with.
So, I'm not moving back to PVG. Nor am I staying in Aagard. I'm moving to Balyo, friends! I have a great roommate for next year, whom I love. And I'm fulfilling my initial goal to live in all three dorm areas. Yes, I'm ready for a change of pace.
I went back to PVG this morning. I trailed my hands along the walls of my old stomping grounds, and I felt content. No, I will never live here again, but we had a good run, Prewitt and I. If I have to tell you where my home was at Corban, however, it won't be a dorm.
It'll be the people I shared my experience with.