Anyone who knows me or knew me at Northeastern knows how much I struggled through the first four years of college. Always alternating between home and school, I had an extremely hard transition. My friends at home were the absolute most important thing in my life outside of my mother. My loyalty to them was paramount to a lot of my own success and I found myself riding back and forth on I-90 frequently to juggle the both worlds.
Most of my friends back home went to SUNY Oneonta, SUNY Albany or quickly entered the workforce. They all remained close to home and lived with each other while I separated and came "way" (not really that far) out here. Although they visited often, I always felt this sense of emptiness that my friends from Northeastern could never fill. Maybe I wouldn't let them.
It took me four long years to realize that not very much can happen at home that won't happen again and again and again over the next 50 years. My parents were born and raised there, and the same goes for all of my friends. It's the town no one ever leaves, or at least it feels that way. I always wanted to get out but once I did, I wanted to go back.
For the first time in five years, I actually don't want to go back. This is in part due to the girls I live with. For the first time since I started college, I have a sense of family here that I never even had to try and create. We've lived together for four months and during that time we've all shared something really special.
It is not to say that I didn't love my old roommates, who I lived with for the past four years, with all my heart. I truly love them and accept them completely. Still, I never felt the sense of family that I have now. It would totally figure that I go and meet all these great people and now everyone is graduating.
I always said that I would look back at Northeastern with no regrets because of everything I have gained professionally and intellectually, and my lack of personal ties here could be compensated because of the love and support I have from people back home. Finally, I really believe that I will look back at my time at Northeastern with no regrets because being here these past few months and having the time of my life made it all worth it.
Like I told Tahja last night, I am not sad to leave Northeastern because I love college and never want it to be over. I am sad to leave because I know in my heart there is a very good chance I will lose touch with my friends from here. They have provided me with the best gift that life can offer - experience through diversity of opinion, ethnicity, religion, outlook, economic background, professional opinion and so much more. With that gift, I have a more promising future. I am so thankful for that and for them.