When I was a freshman in college I was a mixture of things. I was nervous, excited, and sometimes downright scared about how to handle certain situations. The most difficult situation for me to handle was parties. Anyone who knew me in high school can back me up on the fact that I was not a partier. I didn't drink, I didn't go out, and if I did, it was an anomaly. So when I got into college, parties, clubs, and bars were a fear of mine. But I felt obligated to go out, as I didn't want to miss out on the "college experience" everyone was going on and on about.

At some points it was fun, but most of the time I would wake up in the morning and be regretful and even guilty of my actions from the night before. I just felt like going out and partying, making out with strangers, and wearing high heels to dance was just, overkill. It didn't make me feel like me. Now some people, they love that experience, and no judgment from me, if it makes you happy then DO IT. But some of my favorite memories from freshman year were when my friends and I stayed in, drank a few bottles of wine, and just talked about everything. Life, science, politics, you name it. The older I get, I now realize that I find myself leaning towards those nights.

Now, I go out to bars and by 11:00, I'm ready to leave. I'm ready for the fun part of the night, where my friends and I go home, eat way too much food, talk till our heart's are content, and pass out. Even when it comes to house parties, I find myself only going to the houses where I know the hosts, mostly because for me, it's a better experience. There is no pressure to look perfect, no discomfort because you know if something happens, the people around you will take care of you, and not judge you. You know that the people around you have your back and you have theirs. They are not some strangers in bars, but people you can rely on.

That's why I sometimes wish I wouldn't have listened so much to the "college experience." This year, I've made some unbelievable college memories doing exactly what I love, even if it means I'm home earlier than everyone else. In my mind, I think there's nothing wrong with that because, in the end, it's my life and my memories. There's nothing wrong with making them exactly how I want them to be.