BY Olivia DeRosa
I put my deposit in for Sacred Heart on April 24.
Exactly four months later it was move-in day. Coming to college was stressful. It was an experience full of what-ifs, and the possibility of the unknown and pure excitement. Going into move-in day I felt confident. I was in the building I wanted, with a roommate I knew beforehand. I knew exactly how I wanted to set up my room. I spent four months on Pinterest planning it so I was thrilled to put up all my pictures, set up my bed, and organize my clothes. Move-in day, overall, was an adrenaline rush. It felt neverending, and part of me liked that because I knew having to say goodbye to my parents and brother would be happening soon. Saying goodbye was hard. It was harder than I expected it to be.
After my parents left I did what every other freshmen did: go on the lookout for friends. Honestly, that was the aspect of coming to college that I was most scared about. Would I make friends? Would I meet my people? Would these people actually want to be friends with me? Well the answer is yes. I met three girls who I most likely could not survive without. It did take time though. The best advice I got from my mom coming into college was to not force friendships and let them start naturally. I am still making new friends everyday and that is one of the best parts of college. You get to see a new face practically everywhere you go.
Another learning experience during that first week was finding all my classes. Like a typical freshman, I decided to show up to all my classes 15 minutes early. I quickly realized that since I live in Merton, there was no need to leave so early, especially if my class is in the main academic building. I memorized the pattern of the building going H, S, and U wing. That helped a lot when it came to locating the classrooms.
I am not going to lie, anxiety was running high when I went into classes the first day. I did not know where to sit and did not know how to befriend people in that setting but it happened somehow. The lesson I learned is that the less you over-think, the better off you are. Just getting out of my comfort zone pushed me, and I have no regrets thus far.
College is about being uncomfortable at times and trying things you might not have before. For me that meant walking up to people I didn’t know and just talking. I won’t lie, this is scary to do. I have to hype myself up a lot before doing so and not every time is successful. Another lesson is that if someone doesn’t give you the same energy back that you are giving them, they aren’t the people you want in your corner.
The last part of my first week experience that took some adjustment was being an adult. Having to be in charge of getting my meals, doing my laundry, cleaning my space in my room and managing my workload. Starting with the meal plan, I have learned that dining dollars go fast. Meal swipes are the way to go and you have to use them at Linda’s when you can. I have been living off quesadillas and wraps. I highly recommend both of these items from Linda’s.
Next is laundry. Laundry can be a burden. There’s only two machines on each floor in Merton, so you have to grab a machine when it opens right away. Overall, doing laundry is simple and you feel accomplished after you do it.
Also, keeping your room clean helps ease stress and makes the tiny space seem larger. I soon learned that keeping my desk clear is the best thing I can do, as it provides me with a spot to do homework or my makeup or eat at.
Lastly, managing your time. It’s hard to manage your time when you are balancing classes, clubs, homework and trying to create a social life. It all is a balancing act that is possible to manage. You have to prioritize and be smart about how you spend your time.
Sacred Heart was the right choice for me and I have no doubts about that. I have met some amazing people in classes, club meetings and around campus. I have learned a lot about myself and how I thrive. Although moving in and transitioning to college was one of the scariest things I’ve done, it was one of the best changes at the same time. I am happy I chose to push myself to be the real me and outgoing the first week because it has carried me through the three weeks I have been here. Sacred Heart is my second home and I am looking forward to what else it has in store for me.