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Leaving Campus for the First Time

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Brandeis chapter.

It was Saturday, September 14, and I had to leave campus to get my eyebrows done — for the first time ever. Now, I’m from Chicago and I’ve never been to Massachusetts, so the thought of leaving campus for the first time was terrifying. I decided to invite my roommate, Samantha, partly to ease the nerves and partly because neither of us had anything better to do on campus. The campus is my safety bubble: I know the buildings, and for the most part, I know the people and the culture of Brandeis. The same couldn’t be said when I left campus. I had never been to the salon I was going to and I didn’t know the streets of Boston. Back home in Chicago, I knew the streets, the vibe the city gave off, I knew which parts of the city were safer than others. Here, I didn’t know any of that. My mind raced with the possibilities of what could go wrong, and it didn’t help that our Uber driver was an eccentric old man who started talking about a guitar he restored and the time he saw Jimmy Hendrix at age 18. The fact that I now lived in Boston hadn’t fully settled in; I felt like a stranger in my new home and it left me unsettled since I didn’t know what the city could offer. Boston felt like an alien planet like I was simply a visitor rather than a resident. I felt comfortable and safe on campus, so going into the city felt like entering a house of horrors and even though Boston was like any major city, it wasn’t Chicago where I knew what to expect. Nevertheless, I did it, and I made it back to campus in one piece, so maybe Boston isn’t that bad after all? Well, only time can tell. Maybe I’ll grow to love Boston, or maybe I’ll still consider Chicago my home. Being able to verbalize my nervousness about leaving campus really helped me feel confident that I wasn’t the only one struggling to adjust to college life because now Samantha and I are able to laugh about the little unexpected situations that we haven’t had to handle in the past. For example, our window started leaking and we had to confront DCL about it and neither of us had ever had to deal with something like this on our own. So, I definitely think that leaving campus was a great idea and it was a chance for us to do something different. Now we’re ready ( more or less ) to deal with the good, the bad and the ugly parts of college.