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I spent my first night at college crying in a communal shower stall. 

I was under this impression that I was going to be in college for 48 hours and immediately find my best friends and be overjoyed by the independence that I had gained.

But that didn’t happen. In fact, I felt more alone than possibly ever before.

Simply put: I’m not a fan of change. I’m very comfortable with forming habits and having a set schedule. When things are altered, I feel disoriented, constantly trying to bring myself back to that same place of solace. And college is the biggest example of disorientation if there ever was one. High school, along with the friendships and routines that accompanied it, were all that I had known. Leaving it, and my home town as a whole was a whirlwind of negative emotions. It was hard for me to stay optimistic and hopeful when everything that resonated as comfort for me was miles away. Not to mention the fact that I was sobbing in a shower far too small. 

Despite this frustration, I knew I had to persist. I began with the first thing I knew I had to do: try. 

Whether by simply writing down therapeutic notes to myself to help me get through each day, or going to student organization meetings that I know will ultimately benefit my social and academic life, I forced myself to try. 

I’m still struggling to find my footing,

but I realized the significance of trying–acknowledging my own hardships, but not allowing them to cloud the opportunities right in front of me.

The first days of college are the hardest–there are very few things in life that will compare to this adjustment. But sometimes, you just need to push yourself and try. And other times, you just need to let yourself cry in the shower.

Lauren Serge

Ohio U '23

Lauren Serge is currently a junior at Ohio University, majoring in Journalism: Strategic Communication and specializing in Marketing and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She is the current President and Co-Campus Correspondent for the Her Campus OU chapter. She enjoys writing, biking, spending time with her family, friends, and her dog, as well as catching up on her many favorite tv shows.
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