Homesick for the Holidays

When choosing a college, one of the biggest factors I considered was the distance away from home. I wanted to go to a school that was far enough from my hometown, but no more than two hours away. I achieved a perfect one-hour drive when I committed to Monmouth University, and this meant I could still easily connect with high school friends. Or at least that’s what one would think.

I was the person in the graduating class who was over the moon when high school ended. I was sick and tired of my village in Bergen County New Jersey and wished to explore and grow as a person. The idea of a new environment and new people excited me so much, and I honestly never wanted to look back after I left.

Not too long after I went to college, however, did I find myself missing all my best friends from my hometown. The beauty of leaving the toxicity of my high school clouded the fact that I would also be leaving some of my favorite people. To go from seeing them nearly every single day for years, to now only getting to see them a few times a year, is a drastic change that I was not entirely prepared for.

Attending different universities, having conflicting schedules, and starting my brand-new life, all played crucial roles in what made the transition most difficult. My first two school years at Monmouth, I was awful when it came to keeping good communication with my friends from back at home. Now that I am a junior who has officially navigated her way through college life, I have found the proper balance in my schedule to dedicate time to those I miss most. I have become closer with them than ever because of this.

It is, often, difficult when you’re sitting in your off-campus college house and all you want to do is invite your best friend Ava over to watch movies on Netflix, but she lives an hour away and is working full time. It is hard to go to Playa Bowls without my typical companion, Claudia, because she goes to college in Washington D.C. At times, I wonder if Colleen and Rafaha would enjoy a tour through the Great Hall but must remember Colleen goes to college in New York and Rafaha goes to India majority of each year to see family. Mostly, I cannot begin to understand how I go so long without seeing Eli and Anthony, who I consider my brothers.

I find myself homesick very often recently, so I am especially excited for the upcoming holidays and winter break since I will get to see all these friends and more. Until then, I will continue to make phone calls to them out of the blue, send good morning texts, write letters in the mail, make bracelets for when I see them next, and continue to send pictures to update each of them on my life. No matter how hard it gets being apart from them, I always know they will be there waiting for me with open arms when I arrive back home.