reflections from the first month of college

the first month of college has truly flown by and drug on at the same time. college is something you can prepare for all you want, but you can never prepare yourself to the whirlwind that’s about to hit you. this post is honestly more for me to put my feelings and thoughts in words than to give anyone advice, but hey, since i’m writing it, feel free to pick up some pointers or advice.

you will sometimes feel lonely

as some background to understand my situation, my roommate and suitemates either live in the city i attend college or have a sibling at college with them. they can all go home or over to a sibling’s apartment to be with people who truly know them and love them. i came to college without my best friends and family, who are two and a half hours away. that has truly been a struggle for me. you typically don’t make your lifelong best friends within the first month of college. you find people to hang out with and maybe even share your life with, but it will not be the same as talking to your best friend back at home. there is nothing i can do about my best friend being three and a half hours away from me, but what i can do is pray. i pray that God will, in His own time, place the lifelong friends in my life that i truly need. i pray that He will comfort me in my homesickness. i pray that i can take comfort in the fact that He is always there, always loving, always caring.

you realize what you took for granted

free laundry. going out to eat with your parents. your own room and bathroom. your high school teachers. your high school friends. i think the biggest thing i realized when i went to college is just because you don’t always get along with your friends and family, that doesn’t mean you’re not going to miss them all the time. i miss having familiar faces around me all the time. i miss not having to introduce myself every time i walk up to someone. i miss familiarity. so go out to eat with your parents. hang out with the friends you’re convinced you won’t be friends with anymore when you all go to college, because the reality is, you’re gonna miss them more than you would believe.

you realize what REALLY bugs you

i’m an only child. i’ve never had to share a room, bathroom, or anything for that matter. i am (almost obsessively) neat. i have a place for everything, and all my stuff goes in its place. i knew my wonderful roommate before we lived together, and i knew she was not the same way. if you walked into our room, you would be able to tell whose desk is whose and whose side of the closet is whose. i love her to death, but know that when you are tired and you get out of a draining test and just want to come back to a clean room, that won’t always happen, and you will not always be patient about it.

you quickly learn how to prioritize

school is important. sleep is important. social interaction is important. eating is important. IT IS ALL IMPORTANT. take your classes seriously. study for tests. i know some people that simply just did not study for their first college test, and they did poorly (duh). college is not high school. go to the library and put in effort outside of class. getting enough sleep is more vital than i realized. staying up late every night is awful for your health. you won’t feel good in your classes the next day. sometimes it is necessary, but try to plan out your workload to where you can go to bed at least before 1 am every night. and while you’re balancing everything else, find a good church, join some clubs, make some study groups, join a weekly Bible study. get plugged in. if you prioritize what you need you do and manage your time somewhat well, you will be relatively stress free, which is the BEST feeling in the world.

you learn to put your life in God’s hands

college has been incredibly fun, exciting, exhausting, draining, and so much more. it is so different than high school, and it is something you can’t adequately prepare for. i have had some hard moments and some great moments in the past month. i have found myself crying because i was laughing so hard and crying because i missed my friends. throughout this roller coaster, is is SO SO important to keep your focus on glorifying God. if you’re caught up in pleasing others, you will feel empty and dissatisfied. come into college with a solid relationship with God, our Lord and Savior. He is truly all you need. no matter what you’re first month of college is like, you need God. period.

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