How My “Random” Roommate Became My Forever Friend

One of the scariest things about starting college is finding out who your randomly assigned roommate is going to be. You wonder if the two of you will get along, or if they’ll be some kind of awful roommate that keeps you up all hours of the night or leaves their side of the room a mess. 

My experience with housing during college was unique because I lived on-campus during my first year and off-campus during my second year. After deciding to move back to the dorms for my third year, I had no idea what my experience was going to be like. 

I hadn’t made any long-lasting connections, so I knew I would just have to wait and see if I got paired with anyone after applying for housing. Part of me hoped I’d get a room all to myself, just so that I’d have my own space and would be able to focus on work.

 That summer, however, I noticed that a second name appeared beside mine when I was given my housing assignment. I felt a little disappointed at first and did the expected social media search for my new roommate, but to no avail. 

Not long after, I received a Facebook message request. I recognized the name, and opened the message that read, “What is up, my dude? I’m your roommate.” I appreciated that she had even reached out, and just through that simple greeting, something told me we might get along. We continued to talk about what year we’d be going into, our majors, and our interests. We were both pretty shocked to learn we had things in common, specifically pop-punk bands and broadway musicals. 

This was also at a period in my life where I felt unsure of what I wanted. I hadn’t had the best college experience so far and was thinking about transferring. I wanted to inform my roommate that I may not be coming back after all so that she would have time to find another roommate if it didn’t work out. After a lot of soul-searching and reflection, I decided that maybe the third time would be the charm, and I decided to stay in Montevallo. I informed her of this and we went right back to talking about getting ready for the new year. 

I remember that she asked me if I would be going through sorority recruitment, which part of me had always kind of wanted to do, but I never felt like I would fit in. She was an incoming freshman and told me that she would be signing up, and I explained to her that I was interested. I was so ready for positive change in my life, and I knew I wanted this year to be different than all the rest. I wanted to finally throw myself into things and get involved, and I don’t know if I would’ve decided to do that without her mentioning it to me first. It was also comforting to know that I would be going through the experience with someone, and I decided to sign up. 

On move-in day, I only saw her briefly as I was putting my side of the room together. We were naturally both a little awkward, and I didn’t see much of her for the rest of that day. I was a little disheartened because she had friends here that she’d gone to high school with. I didn’t think she’d be around to hang out with me. But that first week went by, and we saw more and more of each other, especially at night. It was weird for me to be back in the dorms, and it was nice to have someone to talk to from right across the room. We got along scarily well, and we quickly became actual friends. 

I found everything that I wanted not only out of a roommate but out of a friend, every day we lived together. We were always there to listen to each other, on the good and bad days. When one of us left town for the weekend, or when we were apart during the holiday break, it always felt so good to be back together, even though we kept each other updated on everything that was happening while we were away. It wasn’t often that you would see one of us without the other attached at the hip, and I felt so grateful when I realized that this was a friend for life. 

Fast-forward to the current day, and we are going on our third year of living together - this time, in a house off-campus. We went through sorority recruitment together (even though we ran home to different places), we’ve been to each other’s hometown, we’ve stayed up for hours crying, laughing, and just talking. She was with me when I found out I had gotten accepted into grad school, and it felt so good to know that our time together wasn’t up yet. I can honestly say that I don’t know what I would do without her, and she has made such a positive impact on my life. She has helped me learn and grow, and I know that she would be there for me at the exact second I needed her. 

We like to think that the universe threw us together for a reason. What were the odds that a freshman and junior would end up in the same room anyway? And what were the odds that we could be so similar, to the point where we can just look at each other and know what we’re both thinking? Sometimes it hits me just how happy I am to have met her, and I really can’t believe how lucky I got. I’m excited to see where life takes us because no matter how far apart we are, I know that she will always be in it in one way or another. 

So, for incoming freshmen who are worried about who their roommate will be, I promise you that miracles do happen, and there is definitely a possibility that you’ll end up living with your best friend for life.