Being a freshman in college isn’t easy but living on campus is a whole different story. Although I’ve only been here two weeks, I’ve already experienced so much.
My whole summer consisted of looking up cute dorm rooms on Pinterest, watching “move-in day” vlogs on YouTube, and buying all the necessities I needed for a full year of college. Attending a college that was only 20 minutes away from my home, I thought it wouldn’t be that hard. Being able to go home for the weekend was an option, or so I thought. My mother told me I was stuck on campus, which was understandable since room and board is so gosh darn expensive. Even though I was close to home, talking about moving in and going to classes made me sick to my stomach every time. So, when move in day came, you bet I didn’t eat breakfast!
All freshmen who are enrolled at the University of Maine are highly encouraged to participate in the “Fall Welcome Weekend”. This is a weekend full of fun activities, eating lots of food, and creating new friendships. Having gone to the same school for my whole life and finding my close friends, I wasn’t ready to be thrown into a crowd full of strangers. Especially since making new friends is one of my weaknesses. Each day, I woke up being fearful of meeting new people. I didn’t know it at the time, but this had meant that I was allowing myself to close off and not be open with the opportunity of making new friends. This is what set me back from the rest of the people I saw at UMaine.
Hearing loud music on my floor at 11pm was extremely obnoxious, however, it tore at my heart strings a little bit. It meant that people were having fun without me. Even though I had no idea who anyone was on my floor, I still had the fear of missing out. Hearing people talking or yelling out on the sidewalk, meant that people were having fun without me. I couldn’t get over the fact that people had the ability to make friends and I didn’t. I was starting to lose hope. I was starting to think that UMaine wasn’t the fit for me, JUST because I didn’t put myself out there and make my own friends.
On top of that, getting used to the dorm lifestyle took some time (I’m still not used to it, even after 2 weeks of showering). Having a coed floor surprised me but it made me even more disappointed because I couldn’t wear my super cute bathrobe after taking showers. The bathrooms aren’t too far from my room but it’s such a pain to have to prepare myself and gather all my bathroom essentials in a backpack. But I’ve created a routine, making the whole process less stressful and less time consuming. Other than those small downfalls, dorm life isn’t so bad after all.
As I’m sitting here writing this two weeks later, I still haven’t met many people and I still haven’t gotten fully used to living in a dorm. I’ve felt lonelier than I ever have this past week and I’ve also shed a couple of tears here and there. But I need to keep reminding myself that everything will get better with time. Although it might really suck in the moment, I know in the end that I WILL make my forever friends. BUT they won’t come from me lounging in my dorm room 24/7, eating crunchy Cheetos, watching Mindhunters, and dreading over the fact that I haven’t met anyone yet.
Overall, my first impression of living on campus for a week could’ve been a lot better. However, it’s been quite the experience. Adjusting to dorm life has been hard, but I’ll continue to build my routine, making college life a little easier as I go. Building new friendships will continue to be a challenge for me, but I’m willing to face that challenge and make my forever friends. If there’s anything you get from this whether you’re starting a new school or a new job where you are faced with strangers, don’t be scared. Put yourself out there. Being uncomfortable in a situation like this is okay. You’re not going to get anywhere by shutting yourself out of the world. You can do it!