Dear First Year Me,
I know you are scared. You’re in a big city, you don’t know anyone, and you are 53.8 miles from home (to be exact, because we both know you’ve looked it up over 100 times between sending in your deposit and now). I know you hate things sugar-coated, so I won’t do that: it is going to suck for a while. The transition is going to be rough, and you are going to feel homesick more than you think. This first week is going to be the worst, but then, it will start to get better.
Your roommate situation is going to be bonkers for a few days, but then you’ll swap and end up meeting the most generous, loving person you know. She’ll be one of your best friends, and you’ll end up living together sophomore year (in the same room—because I know you hate change and technology never works in your favor) and junior year (in the best freakin’ apartment) before she moves to LA (don’t worry though—you’ll still FaceTime frequently and eventually she’ll come back). I know sometimes you feel like you’re a bother to her, but she loves you and is always willing to help when you need it. She also has the best TV show recommendations, so get ready to binge. You have a lot of laughs ahead of you, and a lot of weird nights, but I promise, there is absolutely no one else you would want to spend them with.
Your first college class is going to be fine. I know it’s at 8 am, but the Shimster (yes, that is what he goes by) makes taking an 8 am worth it. I know you think you are going to hate psychology, but you actually really like it, and you are going to take another psychology class with your roommate junior year, even though you are currently convinced that there is no way in hell you’re going to enjoy it.
Oh, and that girl you sit next to in your Intro to College Writing Class (with Ashley Wells2—the 2 is an important distinction, you’ll get it soon enough)? She is going to be one of your best friends and your confidant. She loves bread, so that can definitely be a talking point at all times (You’ll never stop talking about bread). You’ll feel a lot less lonely after you meet her—I promise. She’ll also remind you that you need to stay true to yourself, because real friends don’t judge you (and she’s a real friend—I promise).
You are not going to really love your other classes, but you’ll make it through them. You have a lot more to look forward to in the spring semester, and particularly sophomore year (spoiler alert: You take American Literature with the best literature professor on the planet, and you love his class so much, that you also take Native American Literatures with him during your junior year. And even though that class destroys everything you thought you knew about Native Americans, it’s your favorite class you have ever taken and definitely made you a way better person). You’re going to take a lot of classes that will change your perspective and view of the world, and even though you might not like them, you’ll be better off having taken them. OH, and when you take Dress Codes (for some reason), know that it will be one of your favorite classes, and you’ll get to take it with your roommate (don’t ever let her live down the fact that she forgot what a crew cut was called. It is really important to me that “military haircut” be immortalized for being one of the funniest things).
You’re also going to join way too many organizations. I wish I could stop you from doing that, but I know I won’t be able to. Out of everything you do though, there are three that you’ll stick with until the end. You’re not going to want to say goodbye, but you know that they are in great hands, and that you did a kickass job leading them—yeah, that’s right. I didn’t want to spoil it, but we both know you would do anything to run things because you’re a Slytherin through and through. Remember to be flexible with your staff though—you come on a little strong sometimes because you’re too excited, and you really could tone it down. I know you think that no one loves your orgs as much as you do, but I promise, they do love them, you’re just a little insane (but they love you all the same).
You’re also going to meet a lot of your friends in both Her Campus and The Emerson Review. Don’t be afraid to talk to them, because they are really wonderful people. One of them is also going to be published by Pub Club—and you’ll get to work on the book too. You’ll also meet a fellow Swiftie, and you have a lot of classes with her accidently (she will also be your favorite person to talk to about Taylor’s every decision and she will feed into your easter egg obsession). They are some of the best people you’re going to meet and they will support you through everything.
So there you have it! Your first year of college definitely is not going to go as planned, but that’s okay (please, accept that this is okay. You can’t control everything). Don’t be discouraged by the thing that feels like it is going to derail your entire college plan (yes, your anxiety makes it feel this way, I should know), but I promise, everything will work out. I don’t want to spoil too much for you, since I know you have so much to look forward to, but I wanted you to know that despite everything that might happen, you are going to make it through.
You’re going to make some decisions over the next few years that are going to thoroughly surprise you, but I promise, when the time comes, you’ll be ready for them. I am so proud of you, and I know that you really need to hear that—especially from me. Thank you for being you, and staying true to yourself.
Your future self