Back in #OilerNation—Chapter Two!
Coming back to college as a second year is … weird. I didn’t have to stress out about if I got everything checked off of the “Perfect College Packing List” on my Pinterest board; I didn’t have to map out my class schedule and make sure I knew where each class I had was; and I didn’t have to worry about not knowing anyone at UF because I had been keeping in touch with my Findlay friends all summer! I mean, it’s only three weeks into my sophomore year here at the University of Findlay, but I can already tell there are lots of large differences between this year and last year.
I think the most obvious difference is that there were definitely many different emotions. The summer before my first year was very nostalgic and sad. My parents were going to be sending their oldest daughter/child off to a city an hour away, and my younger sister was not going to have me to drive her everywhere and stay up late watching movies. It all left a very present sadness throughout our house leading up to my move-in to Findlay. Moving in was fun (even if it was into a tiny dorm room), but leaving my family was not. I immediately missed home and my mom’s cooking. I knew a maximum of three people before moving in, and trying to talk to other people in my classes, even with awkward ice breakers, did not work. Classes started to overwhelm me, and I had to learn how to efficiently study for the first time ever. To be honest, I am still not sure that I have mastered it completely, but I continually work on it. I also had basically no idea where I was going, ever.
Moving in this year was monumentally different. My family only let a few tears slip, my roommate and I are best friends, who spent all of spring semester together, and I am just completely overjoyed to be back at UF. Even more, I got to move into the new Campus Ministry group house, which is not a dorm! And really, there was no overthinking or being nostalgic before moving back in. The course load is more intensive and I’m involved in more organizations than I was last year, but somehow I just fell right into a perfect routine when classes started again. It is kind of like I never left! It’s so crazy how much one year could affect me and the way I approach different situations!
The other huge difference I noticed was my overall confidence and the way I carry myself. As a frightened first-year student, I kept my head down and roamed from class to class, hoping not to attract attention. I was petrified to audition for the choir because I did not want to make a mistake or make a bad first impression. I was nervous to talk to professors or fellow classmates because what if they could tell I was a first year student?I wouldn’t even eat in Henderson by myself last year! Now, I laugh at the way I handled myself, and I gladly will enjoy some scrumptious breakfast after my piano lessons before anatomy, in Hendo (that’s what the cool kids call Henderson), all by myself! I also talk to others around me more, speak to professors, ask questions, and yes, even sing in front of Dr. Jung for my choir audition, even though it is still a little scary sometimes! I even keep my head up walking to class, looking around at our beautiful campus and thinking how lucky I am to be here for yet another awesome year back in #OilerNation!