To the incoming college freshman,

You are filled with emotions right now. High school graduation is just around the corner, and you are so ready. You did all of your 'lasts.' Your last first day of high school. Your last football game. Your last winter break. Your last prom. The only 'last' that's left is your last last day of school. You are so excited.

You got accepted into college, and you're so ready for bigger and better things. You think that the next four years are going to drag, and honestly, the thought of sitting in a classroom for the next four (or more) years scares you a little bit. But it's college and it's freedom and you're ready to go. You are planning on making the most of the last summer at home with your high school friends and then you're gone to bigger and better things.

I know you're so ready to go, but take a moment and enjoy every single second.

Enjoy all of the scary 'firsts' that you are dreading. The first actual time you have to say goodbye to your family after an entire day of moving you in. The first class you have. The first time you have to sit in a room of strangers and try to desperately make a friend. Your first college exam. Everything that you're scared of for freshman year, try to enjoy it because it'll happen so fast and you'll look back and laugh.

Enjoy all of the memories you make. All of the football games and the late nights. The lazy days spent with your new best friends that you literally cannot comprehend how you spent the last 18 years without. The concerts and the shopping trips. Make all of the memories, go on all of the trips, and enjoy every second.

Enjoy all of the bad days, too. Freshman year is a whirlwind, and more than half of college students struggle with mental illness as a result of all of the changes of college. The bad days will come. You will fail tests. You will miss your family. You will struggle to adjust. You will want to quit. But you won't. Enjoy the journey of working through these. You learn so much about yourself and your personal strength during the hard times of college. Enjoy the hard times because they make the good so much better.

Enjoy everything and every moment of your college career. It might seem like the four years will drag, but I promise you that you will look back as you're entering your last year of college and miss all of those moments. If you're lucky, you're going to make some of the best friends and meet the most inspirational people these next four years, appreciate them because they won't be in the same town as you forever.

Enjoy every second because I promise you it goes by in the blink of an eye.


A college senior