Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Living

As college students, summer often thrusts many of us into the throes of a difficult living situation. For some, it's a difficult re-adjustment with living back home with parents and siblings. For others, it's a chance to live independently with new friends in a new city, or a city you've grown to love. The past few years, I have been in the former situation. As the oldest, I was the first to 'come back' home for these brief months. While my mom outwardly seemed very happy to have me back, the constant struggle for control proved to be challenging for both of us.  (you get used to a certain amount of independence living 6 hours away from your family, but being aware that you are living with people who like to sleep at 3 am is also a novel concept) This often proved to be difficult and was ultimately eye-opening for both of us. While those past two summers were invaluable for myself and my family to grow and learn, I have got to say that I am embracing true independent living.

During the school year, the university provides a very strong support system for housing. As a recipient of the Trustees' Scholarship, I have to live in on-campus housing, and I enjoy that support system. With classes, work, extracurriculars, and a social life, it is near impossible to also find the time to consistently cook meals, deep clean spaces, and the like. However, this summer I've moved into my first place that I'm actually renting. Really it's the top half of a duplex with two other friend near campus. But I have enjoyed this new step into independence. 

I am especially loving making my own schedule. While I am at work from 8:30 to 5 pm at work every day, I've utilized a Groupon deal to then go to workout classes near my work after. This unique community of mostly young women who are interested in getting in shape, (but also slightly enjoying the exercise) has meant a chance to meet lots of new people- if not by name, atleast it's by their face. Then after getting home (sweaty and tired) its nice to settle in for a movie night with my roommates, a good book, some cleaning, or a long phone conversation back home. All of these small steps have helped me realize a few things. 
1) I will not do well living alone. I like talking too much, and that's all there is to it. 
2) I am obsessed with clean floors. I don't like shoes, so that must be why. 
3) Screened-in porches are fabulous
4) Who needs cable?
5) I sometimes need an intense workout after a long day of work. 

So as I continue my summer journey, I hope that others also have their chance to enjoy 3 months of company anywhere. In your hometown, in a new city, or simply with some good friends. I promise that every space is a learning opportunity in more ways than one. 

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