I’ve never thought of myself as a “homebody.” As a child I never had trouble sleeping over friends’ houses or going on school field trips. Throughout high school I jumped at any opportunity to leave my house and hangout with friends, work, volunteer, and travel. As someone who loves new experiences, I thought leaving home for college would be a cakewalk. I assumed I would make friends easily and be having so much fun I wouldn’t even have time to be homesick. I was wrong.
The morning I left home for college in a car packed to the brim I didn’t cry. I was so enthralled to be embarking on a new experience. After my parents helped me unpack and left for home I didn’t cry. I had so much fun the first few days of college, but once classes and homework started, the feeling of nostalgia started to hit me. I couldn’t stop thinking about how from this point on life would never be the same as it had been before. I couldn’t help but get upset over the fact that I would only be living in the house I grew up in for 3 months out of the year from now on. I couldn’t believe that I would be living away from my mom, with whom I had grown extremely by the end of high school.
Adjusting to college was extremely difficult. The truth is, it is difficult for almost everyone. Don’t get me wrong, I love college, but even as a second-semester sophomore, I still get sad every time I leave home to return to school after a break. And although it is always hard, it does get easier. While I find that I often miss my home, my friends, and my family, college has truly brought me so many new friends, classes, and experiences — all of which help to fill the void.
So my advice to anyone out there who is feeling sad when they leave for college (the first time or after a break) is don’t be ashamed or feel like you are alone. It’s completely natural and normal to be homesick. However, if this feeling is taking over your life and making it hard to complete everyday tasks, go to class, or hangout with friends, PLEASE talk to someone! Talk to your parents, friends from home or school, or a school counselor.
On a positive note, being away from home for a while makes it even more exciting to return, see your friends and family, and sleep in your own bed!
“Distance gives us a reason to love harder” – Anonymous.