1,100 Miles Later

Dear Freshman year me,

Wow, how the time does fly. It seems like only yesterday you were moving into your dorm in the Hill, sweating profusely and not realizing just how many trips to Target you would have to make in the next 48 hours (and four years). I bet you didn’t realize that when you said goodbye to your mom and watched her drive her rental car back to the Atlanta airport, that the best four years of your life were about to begin. I hope you didn’t spend too many of those first few nights staying awake and wondering if going to school 1,100 miles from home was the right decision. Would you make friends? Would you do well in school? Would the culture shock be too much?

The first few months will be the hardest; you’ll miss home, your family (especially your dog) and what has been familiar for the first 18 years of your life. It will get better and you’ll get used to being alone at times. You’ll meet so many new people, some that will be in your life for a week, a month or maybe just that Tuesday/Thursday class you hate so much. Eventually you’ll meet those amazing ones, the people that you’ve only heard stories about from your parents and family and the ones they still talk to today. They’ll be the ones that join you for midnight night ice cream runs, trips to Target just to wander around and will be there when you truly think you’ve hit rock bottom.

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You’ll learn that choosing your major when you’re 18 and all you cared about was horses will lead you to changing it two (maybe three) times. As annoying as it may seem, enjoy the times you walked from building to building with your folder to change majors because passing those campus buildings will soon be something you only do when you come back to visit for a weekend. Take an extra long time in front of Samford. You’ll see that building for years to come on postcards and posters, but how many times will you be there right at noon to hear the fight song ring through campus.

So as a much older and (hopefully) wiser you, please promise me a few things as you spend the next four years at Auburn. Promise me you’ll stay up way too late during the week to hang out with friends, even if you have a big project or test the next day. Stay up even later on the weekend because contrary to what others may say, the best memories can happen after 2 a.m. Fail a few classes, shed some tears and fear that you may not graduate on time, it builds character and strength and you will realize how small those events are in the grand scheme of things. Call your mom, she’ll worry about you and miss you more than she’ll let on. Finally, promise me you won’t regret a thing. The choices you will make will shape you into who you are and lead you to the best experiences and “family” you will ever meet.


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