I was sweating and grinning like an idiot when I stepped away from the suffocating crowd of just-graduated and ran like a kid to hug my mom and dad after one of the most significant ceremonies of my life. I was done with a major chapter of my life and, frankly, apprehensive of what the next pages would bring. I would leave UCLA (one of the best places in the world, in my opinion), my roommates aka the best friends I would make in college, and the only idea of independence that I had created in my head.
Ten months later and I am incredibly proud of my decision to move back home with my parents to begin my life as a truly self-sufficient and secure young person.
I had a singular idea of what "Independence" meant before I graduated from college and even way before then when I was in high school. In my mind, independence was Friends. Yes, the show. Financial and personal independence resulted in the ability to somehow live in my own NYC apartment with other clueless young adults through my own means and struggle to make ends meet without help from family, in order to party as hard as I want without a curfew. Like I said, singular.
Living at home has proven to have shown to outweigh the few cons with the very plentiful amount of pros. Although I have to mind the fact that I am living with my parents, which means that I have to remember to account for others besides myself, I get to live almost as autonomously as I would've lived with roommates. Most of this is because my parents have seen that they can trust that I can be self-reliant ( I work full-time as a teacher and do work around the house) and don't feel as concerned about my decisions as they did in high school, understandably.
I, in return, have a built-in support system made up of people that have a vested interest in my future and happiness. This was amazing for starting off my professional life and learning to do things like a grown-up (still working on that, though). It helped that most of my friends, from my hometown and college, went back home to live with their parents, too. In fact, this has been noticed as a trend amongst millennials.
I know that I am privileged and fortunate to have the support system that I have. My parents have been there through every step of the way for academic and personal accomplishments, alike. They've, especially, held me up through the challenges of 2 am panics and the pre-enrollment stresses of class selection. I will always appreciate and remain thankful for their support without any condition of doing anything other than what I am most passionate about.