As lots of people I know headed back to classes last week, it hit me: I miss college. Big time. And it hit me again when I got an invite to my college friends’ Fantasy Football league. Because I wish so much that we could all pile into my dorm room in Maple Hall with our laptops to draft players for our teams and eat junk food.
I miss being able to walk across Freddy Court to my friends’ apartments. I miss Iowa State’s super pretty campus. I miss the convenience of CyRide. I miss pranks and night tennis and dining halls and Mafia and staying up way later than I do now. I miss going to Perkins and visiting Sam’s farm. I miss spending time with friends that had known me for longer than two years. I miss road trips to Chicago and Louisiana. I miss Pepper.
It really boils down to two things: I miss the physical community of my college and I miss the community of my friends.
As Dan and I scheme about possible places to live while he does a medical residency program, I’ve found my preferences slide from BIG CITY BIG CITY to wouldn’t-a-college-town-be-nice. There were many perks to living in little Ames, Iowa. And many perks to college towns/smaller communities. As just one example, I’ve lately been thinking a lot about safety, as a woman about my age was shot and killed in the middle of Saturday afternoon in our neighborhood. Ames was safer than here. But is safer better? I don’t know.
I miss the friends I got to spend so much time with at Iowa State. And I wish I had spent more time with them, too. We’ve been blessed with some really great friends in St. Louis, but it’s just not the same. And it really can’t be. The college dynamic is one I don’t think I’ll be able to recreate. It’s hard, because I dwell on it a lot. Maybe I’m a little scared of all this grown up, apartment living, full-time working, married, adoption stuff that going on. Eek. I’m loving it — really, really. But it’d be fun to go back to college life for just a bit.
But I remember: I’m here for a reason. I’m very happy with this stage of life. And I am determined to enjoy it and soak it up. College isn’t going to happen again, and I’ll just remember it fondly and thank God for what it was.