From Place to Place to, Finally, Home

Courtesy: spontaneouswhimsy.com

I’ve moved every year for the past four years during my time in college. I lived the freshman experience in a dorm room. Sophomore year, I moved to an off-campus apartment. My junior year, I transferred to a quaint townhouse where a few of my friends already lived and finally, this year, I’ve settled into a real house.

The dorm was fine. Tight quarters, no real privacy. Similar to that of a jail cell, but my roommate was friendly and fun so it could’ve been a lot worse—I’ve definitely heard of a lot worse. The commute wasn’t so bad since I didn’t have to drive anywhere, and my classes were relatively close. The worst part about it was being from a different state and not knowing anyone. Living in the cold confines of a dorm didn’t help and it didn’t feel like a real home.

Courtesy: shareably.net

My apartment was a bit of an upgrade. We had our own rooms, our own kitchen, a living room with an uncomfortable plastic couch, and didn’t have to pay every time we used our washer and dryer. It was more of a home than a dorm, but I wouldn’t say it was all that much better. Most of my friends lived in complexes closer to campus, so I was usually visiting them rather than the other way around.

It wasn’t until I moved into a townhouse my junior year that I felt more comfortable being in my living space. It had stairs and carpeting which I had missed so much from my real home back in New Jersey. I could walk downstairs in the morning and sit with my friends in our den, drink coffee, talk and watch TV. It was a warmer place, too. My apartment the previous year always felt cold and dark because my roommate was never home and neither was I for that matter. Being in the townhouse was welcoming. I loved coming home at the end of a long day to one of my roommates cooking pasta in the kitchen and another watching TV on the couch. The only downside was that I was still desperately far from campus and all of my roommates were graduating, so I’d ultimately have to move again.

Courtesy: Haley Harward

When I did move, later that summer, it was into the house just behind the stadium (not to brag). It has a backyard of flourishing greenery, twinkling lights strung from every grand oak and an already made pit for bonfires in the winter. I reside in the attic that had been converted into a room, and while it is an attic, it feels more like home than my childhood home sometimes. When it rains I lay in my bed and listen to each individual drop hit the roof with a soft, soothing thud. I can take naps on the plush couch in the afternoon, sit on my roof in the evening and watch the sunset, walk downstairs and have a spontaneous wine night with my roommates, throw a party or a tailgate in the backyard just because. It’s a cozy home tucked away from the busy street nestled among nature. It’s always warm when I walk inside, inviting and sweet. But the best part of it all is that I can come home at the end of my day to an actual stand-alone home that I can call my own even if it is just for a year.