I was a 19 year old girl, terrified to leave the only home I had ever known when my mother dropped me off for my first year of college. I had chosen SUNY Delhi because it was close to home, and had my major. I was nervous and excited to see what I gained from this new experience, however I was not prepared for what I was going to lose.
In March, my second semester, I was hospitalized for a week for my anxiety and depression. I had always struggled with it but it got really bad, and I was so scared. I was scared of what was going to happen- especially with school because it was SO important to me. When I was in the hospital, I wasn't allowed to use a computer, to e-mail my professors or anything. I communicated with my academic adviser (Who is an angel on this earth) through my mother who came to see me everyday. He made it very clean to mother to make sure to tell me to focus on getting myself better, and we'd talk more once i returned.
Upon my return i was greeted with a hug, and a plan to get me back on my feet. My adviser made it very clear that he would do ANYTHING in his power to help me. Whether it be talking to my other professors, and giving me extra time to finish work. I was blessed to come back to such a safe, and supportive environment, but it wasn't just him that as so kind.
My statistics professor greeted me with a hug, tears in her eyes, telling me she was glad to have me back. Assuring me we would work together to get me all caught up.
My creative writing professor was kind, and upon finding out that I had missed so many classes due to my struggles told me all my absences were now excused, because he didn't want my grades to suffer due to the unseen battle I was fighting.
My public speaking told me she was proud of me for getting the help I needed, and if there was anything she could do to please let her know.
I left each office in tears. All I felt was overwhelming amounts of gratitude for these incredible teachers- however I was not prepared for what happened next.
It was my second Monday back since I got out of the hospital and I got a phone call that changed everything. On April 25th I got the call that my mother had passed away. A giant whole was blasted into my reality, my life was never going to be the same again. I spent the week calling family and friends, sighing death certificates, and writing her obituary. I didn't know what I was going to do. I felt like a newborn suddenly reborn into a 20 year old body, and life.
The only thing I knew for certain is that i wanted to go back to school. I was going to finish my freshman year for my mom. She wouldn't have wanted me to stop chasing my dreams. There were a lot of factors taken into my consideration when I decided to go back to school. The support from my family, and friends I knew I had. And based on the history I knew my professors would understand.
However, I was utterly blown away by their responses. They cried with me, hugged me, and reassured that I wouldn't be alone on my journey to finish my first year of college. Some professors dropped exams, and assignments, as well give alternate assignments to replace exams. The amount of support, behind me was more than I would have ever hoped for.
With the kindness, and support of my professors, and a 20 day extension, I finished my freshman year with a 3.26 GPA. I wouldn't have been able to return to school without them, and the went a step further and helped me achieve greatness when I was barely whole.
They are some of the most incredible professors, role models, and human beings I have ever met, and there will always be a place in my heart for the professor who saved me when I couldn't save myself.