April 19, 2024

I cannot tell you how many times I have wanted to leave and never come back. It is the freedom and extra time a college student gains that drives them to procrastinate, forget, fall behind, become desperate, lost, full of regret and eventually be completely overwhelmed.

This was a whole new world for me with all its ups and downs. I have never been away from home as long as this and when it is time to go home for holidays, high school musical productions and concerts, it was hard to come back. The homesickness and separation from everything safe and calm was the hardest separation ever, but I realized things get easier with time.

During my first semester, I was out and about, being the friendliest and most spontaneous person I could possibly be. I joined extracurricular clubs that seemed adventurous, for I have trouble stepping outside of my comfort zone and trying new things. I didn’t hesitate and that helped me make new friends. I socialized with a huge diversity of people, but as Christmas loomed, I fell out of touch with most of those people and with myself.

The week of finals was a wreck not just because I overstressed, but also because a family member passed away. I could not concentrate on anything and barely slept. But I got through it because I continued pushing myself to keep studying and trying to move forward. My friends kept me steady and that is probably why I decided to return to Witt after Christmas break. I had made such strong connections with the people here and I always can find someone to talk to or say hi to while walking down Alumni Way or sitting in the library studying.

When I returned, I decided that I needed to slow down. I loaded myself up with way too much the first semester with clubs, theatre projects, work assignments and my studying schedule. I stuck with the clubs that mattered more to me and I took more breaks during my study sessions to give myself some breathing room. I sometimes still feel a little lost and stressed and sometimes anxiety gets the best of me, but over time, I have learned how to adapt.

The walk through the Hollow during springtime with all the flowers abloom is extremely soothing after a long test or presentation. Mozzarella sticks from Post 95 is an amazing comfort food. Having a professor’s door open for you to talk about anything is my life preserver. The kind, simple atmosphere of a small, close-knit college reminds me of my small-town home and it makes me smile.

I look into my future here at Witt and I first look at all the troubles and obstacles I will face. I imagine myself in a similar position as I was in during the first semester. I see the stress piling up. But then, all the wonderful things, the benefits, the end results present themselves. I see, at the end of the tunnel, what I want to work towards and I know that Wittenberg can get me there and out into the light.

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