I didn’t experience any homesickness during the first few weeks at Boston University.
I got swept up in the craziness of college life — meeting new people, going to classes, exploring the city — so there was no time to dwell on who and what I’d left behind.
That isn’t to say I didn’t miss my family and friends back home, but I was too overstimulated, running in circles, to sit with any of those feelings.
There was no time to stop and dwell on small annoyances or minor inconveniences. It’s healthy to brush certain issues off your back, but if you don’t mentally address the reoccurring ones, they could lead to a larger problem.
Midterms hit me like a train. I had two exams and a handful of my larger assignments were due the same week.
The smaller stressors began to grow. Minor inconveniences became major. I let projects and articles that I had to complete overwhelm me.
This stress caused me to reminisce. I began to miss aspects of my life back home, things that temporarily distracted me from the frustrations I faced in high school.
I missed driving alone, blasting my playlist, and belting out Billy Joel on my way to work. I missed being truly alone and able to be myself in the intimate space of a car.
I missed the Miller’s Ale House by my school, where my friends and I often found ourselves after our flag football games or on Friday nights. I missed the familiar faces and gossiping over some boneless wings.
I missed my family. I missed talking about the latest episodes of Big Brother with my brother. I missed my dad’s constant jokes and my mom’s constant inquiries about my future.
So of course, my most stressful week of college thus far also brought on my first feelings of homesickness.
I found myself slightly more on edge. Every mishap upset me more than it should.
During that stressful week, I had a laundry catastrophe in which one of my washing machines left my clothes soaking in a pool of dirty water. That set me over the edge. I called my parents to rant about it, wishing I could be doing it on our couch back home.
Luckily, my parents and brother came up for parent’s weekend a few days after this incident. I was so happy to see them.
While most of our days consisted of a few restaurant meals — a blessing for my predominantly dining hall diet — and shopping on Newbury Street and at the Prudential Center, they were just what I needed to come back from a rough week.
Now that the first bouts of homesickness are behind me, I’m starting to feel it more regularly.
It comes in waves, from wishing I could privately dance to a song that comes up on my playlist, to wanting to rant to my brother about a talkative person in a lecture who’s getting on my nerves.
I wish I could say that there is a cure for homesickness, but it will hit you at different times and in large or small ways. If you find that homesickness starts to get in the way of your responsibilities, it’s a good idea to address it in the short term so you can be more productive.
For example, if I’m feeling particularly homesick, I might call my parents before I do my work so that I can hear their voices and then focus completely on my assignments for the rest of the day.
As cliche as it may sound, homesickness is a natural feeling experienced by many college students. Make the effort to stay in touch with your family and friends back home, however near or far you are from them.