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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at MSU chapter.

All too often, I find myself longing for a time that once was. I feel as if I have begun floating through this stage in my life; college itself is a transitional phase, but that does not slow the racing in my mind. I long for simplicity: my family together, my friends within my hometown lines, and high school being my biggest problem. 

I was not ready for my life to change so quickly. I live away from home every year for my summer job, which is nothing new, but coming home from college and then immediately leaving for the summer threw me into a downward spiral from which I have not yet recovered. 

Of course, every family and every individual has their own unique circumstances, but I suddenly felt like I was living someone else’s life. I was never in my house anymore. I grew up in this place and it is all I have ever known, but I was never there anymore. The more I pondered it, the deeper my longing became. Wasn’t it just last week that I graduated from middle school? Wasn’t it yesterday that I was going to my sophomore homecoming dance? I felt like a stranger in my own skin, in my own home, in my own life. My house was different, as my parents recently started remodeling, and my younger sister moved out at 18 years old. I was told of signing the lease, move-in dates, and when she left after the fact. I grew up with one person by my side at all times, and she left without telling me she was doing so. With my parents and my boyfriend working during the day, I found myself alone all the time. 

Don’t get me wrong, being alone is one of my favorite forms of self-care. However, I know that everything in life should come in moderation. I value my alone time, but the time between my summer job and college leaves me at a loss: no job, no people to see, and nothing to do. I merely exist in a sort of limbo. 

I can feel myself being shorter with my parents without meaning it. I find myself snapping at them easily and my chest drops when I realize what I have done. They don’t deserve that from me and I don’t know why I keep doing it. I no longer feel like myself – not that I knew who that was to begin with. 

In all honesty, I don’t feel ready to become an adult. I still feel like a scared 15-year-old trying to figure herself out, and turning 20 in a few months makes everything feel 100 pounds heavier. I’m nothing more than a kid faking her way through life, and I’m not entirely sure when she’ll feel the sense of comfort she once knew. She and I both long for when life was simple, even if that’s long gone.

Charlotte Bongratz is the Vice President and Co-Campus Correspondent for Her Campus at MSU. She oversees chapter operation and assists with internal as well as external affairs such as meeting planning, brand partnerships, and recruiting. Bongratz is a junior at Michigan State University studying journalism with a concentration in writing, reporting, and editing with a minor in business. Bongratz wrote for her high school's award winning journalism program for all four years she attended and has several stories published through the Spartan Newsroom. She won first place in the "personal essay feature" category of the 2023 Her Campus Chapter Awards for her story about the shooting on MSU's campus in February 2023. In her free time, Bongratz enjoys crocheting, listening to music, analyzing television shows, and spending too much time on FaceTime with her dog, Louis.