What They Don't Tell You About Your Freshman Year of College

What They Don't Tell You About Your Freshman Year of College

Sometimes it'll hit you like a truck.

Rachel Schnelle

While the second semester of my freshman year is a lot less bumpy, the first one was really rough. For some reason, I just never felt like I had a grip on anything. When my social life flourished, my academic life declined and I couldn't find a healthy in between.

As I finished out the first semester of my college career, I realized that there were a lot of things that nobody told me would happen in this first semester.

1. You'd miss home during the most random times

Because of the nature of my move-in experience, there was no time for sad and teary eyed-goodbyes. If I'm honest, I really wasn't homesick for the first month of school. Everything was so fresh and new that I was too excited to miss my family. Homesickness didn't truly hit me until everything had slowed down and I began a normal routine.

2. The lows are really low and highs are really high

At times during last semester, the weeks were either really good or really bad. There would be weeks where I got a good grade on an assignment, I'd have one of my articles printed or I'd have someone say something kind to me. Those weeks felt like I was on top of the world. However, then there would be weeks where I'd get a bad grade on an assignment, wake up late for all of my classes and end the week alone in my dorm. Those weeks became lonely and desolate and caused me to get in this pit of sadness.

3. Find joy in the little things

Whether it be coffee with a family member, an early morning bible study or my roommate making me laugh after a long day. Joy came at me unexpectedly this semester. There were weeks where I felt like I couldn't figure out what I was doing and I needed a grip on my life. These little unexpected pieces of joy gave me a sense of peace when I needed it the most.

4. You'll fail a lot and make stupid mistakes

I made so many stupid mistakes during my first semester of college. I took super long naps when I could've been studying, slacked off in the class I was struggling the most in, stayed up late reading a large reading... the list goes on an on. I also failed a lot. This could mean anything from failing my first test, saying the wrong thing to a friend or not getting enough sleep. My first semester of college was one big learning experience, and that can mean a lot of failures. After all, the most valuable lessons I've learned have come from failure.

5. You'd spend WAY too much money

Starbucks being within walking distance from my dorm was both a blessing and a curse. I wasn't a coffee drinker in highschool, and I came to college and became dependent on it. I would get large coffees and feel shaky and sick throughout the rest of the day. I realized that I don't actually need coffee to make me feel less tired and that the only thing that'll fix that is more sleep.

6. At times, all you want is for it to be over

I remember calling my mom during the middle of last semester and saying 'I just want this semester to be over with'. I had hit rock-bottom at that point and didn't want to try anymore. This sounds really sad and depressing, but at that point, I was lonely and struggling in every aspect of my life.

7. You'd call your mom every time something minor happens to you

My mom is truly an angel sent from heaven, because I don't know what I would've done if she wasn;t able to pick up anytime I needed something. She's helped me with my troubels with school, friends and my life in general. I don't think I could've survived the sad days during last semester.

8. You'd get really close with random friends

I never would've guessed that I would get really close with people in my classes, my extracurricular activities and heck, even my roommate. Making friends was pretty hard at first, and I didn't realize that I was actually making friends until after it had happened. These were the best kind of friends because the only thing they know about you is how they've met you which allows so much room for growth.

9. Time management is precious

If you don't get anything out of this article-remember this. TIME MANAGEMENT IS KEY. I wasted so much time last semester looking at my phone in between classes instead of doing homework, which caused me to do it late at night. This in turn caused me to be tired the next day and then I just repeated the visicous cycle.

10. You wouldn't find your groove until halfway through the semester

I thought that I'd immediately know where all of my classes were, when they ended and the breaks I had everyday. As it turns out, I really didn't. People say that you don't find this until the fourth week of school, but I didn't find it until at least halfway through the semester. Everything was still so new and confusing that it took me a little longer than the average person (and that's ok).

11. It'll be a big learning lesson

From this semester, I learned so much about my academic life. I learned to buy a really nice planner, make to-do lists 24/7 and to not rely on coffee so much. I also learned so much about my mental and physical well-being. I learned that it's OK to cry when you need to and to seek help when you are struggling, and that those easy mac cups are only ok once in a while.

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