University: the path I'm glad I took - 3 months on.
When I first applied for university, so many thoughts dominated my mind. Where to go? Whether to live there? Will I need to change doctors? Will my relationship work if I move away? How will I earn money? All these questions distorted my initial ambition to become a Criminal Psychologist and I began to get cold feet about the whole process.
Adulthood was fast approaching. It was an intimidating prospect.
It wasn’t until I received my A-Level results that it suddenly hit me, full force.
I was labelled the “boring one” of the friendship group because I was ‘too mature for my age’, however, a transition that had been achieved by even the most immature teenagers seemed impossible for me.
With my physical health in the doctor’s undesirable hands and my mental health being ever destructible I made so many excuses to stay at home and study.
It wasn’t until my mum made me a cup of tea (a cuppa always helps) sat me down and allowed me to spill all my worries and fears about moving away from home, that it all became clear. Mum is my idol and my inspiration; although we fall out and need our head banging together most of the time, she truly is the most resilient person I have ever met. Mum plainly said to me “if this process didn’t frighten the crap out of you, it isn’t meant to be. If you run away every time you get scared, life wouldn’t be exciting, and you wouldn’t evolve into the person you wish to be”.
Deep down I knew Mum didn’t want me to move away, I was her first daughter and her best friend, she relies on me in many ways, as I do her. My Father isn’t around, Mums’ Mum has died, her father is no longer in the picture and her baby sister passed away 5 years ago.
It is just us.
The fact that she put her true wishes aside and looked me in the eyes and encouraged me to do something that she feared as well as I, made my decision final.
My University Placement was confirmed that night, my accommodation was set in stone and a move in time and date was assigned to me.
It was really happening…
Shopping for kitchen utensils and bedroom accessories became my new favourite hobby, who knew you could get so excited over a bathroom mat and a new tea towel.
The moving date was fast approaching and the dread and fear was soon replaced with excitement and anticipation.
The moving in process was easier for me, I managed to bag myself the first slot to move in. Liam and I drove down in his car, packed to the brim with all my memories and shit that I would probably never use.
We arrived in Bath and traffic was bloody awful, the Satnav was just as confused as we were with the ridiculous roundabouts and one-way roads.
When we finally arrived at my accommodation, the butterflies were kicking in. Not those nervous butterflies but those excited ones, the ones that make you want to wee yourself (or is that just me).
I was handed my keys and shown to my flat. None of the other girls had moved in at this point so I was lucky enough to bagsy the first shelf in the fridge, cupboards and draws. I was generous though and didn’t hog any of the ‘good’ draws and cupboards. How they are rated I don’t know…
Three days later once a began settling in fully and putting the last finishing touches on my room to make it more home like, the other girls began arriving. Liam and I decided to get out their hair and explore Bath together, allowing the girls to settle in without feeling anxious and overwhelmed.
The first night of all of us being in the flat together consisted on whip up meals, mac and cheese and a horror movie in my room. Although Sam hated horror movies and cried all the way through, she powered through like a solider.
The first week, before freshers, we explored the campus and began going to meetings to get to know the people in our seminars and lectures. This consisted of the most awkward ice breakers and emotional exposure, but I think I handled it well.
I was very honest about my conditions from the get-go and my flat mates have been the most understanding and the most approachable girls I have ever met in my life.
Our first night out was successful, and I debriefed them on Patricia specifically (read my first blog post to get to know my condition) and they didn’t bat an eyelid. I was so nervous about telling them, but I needed to as I would be living with them for a year, and Patricia wouldn’t hide away for that long.
After too many vodkas and hours of dancing, one flat expanded to three flats. A friendship of four now was a friendship of twelve.
That sounds impossible to deal with, but really it isn’t.
Meals out can be a challenge but meals in are no issue, we all bring food along and set a theme (like Mexican food) enjoyed by everyone. Nothing expensive but sociable and chilled.
Without these girls and two boys, I don’t think I could have survived my first couple of months at university. A lot of them are younger than I am, but I’m lucky to have my best friend at university who is my flat mate and the same age as I am.
It is surprising how many students have had a gap year, a girl in my Psychology Seminar is 25. Which is just amazing. It’s lovely to have a variety of friends and associates.
Of course, you get those people at university that you don’t really get on with, but for the sake of your friendship group you remain civil.
At college, that would be impossible to achieve with all the gossiping and arguments, but at University its so different. Everyone is there to achieve their dream and get the degree they came here to get.
There is a handful of people on my course that I have only met twice because they have treated their time at university so far as a vacation.
A very expensive vacation full of alcohol and sex.
I mean I wouldn’t want to pay £9,250 for a course I never go to and get myself into so much debt for the sake of a shag… would you?
What’s nice about the whole processing of moving away from home is that you surprise yourself. I never knew how independent I was until I moved away. Paying bills is a breeze to a certain extent and my routine works well for me. I haven’t changed who I am for anyone and I don’t plan on changing myself.
If you don’t go to the gym and decide to stuff your face with chocolate, the likelihood is your flatmates will join you rather than judge you. Want to watch the recent detective series, someone in your flat will watch it with you. Want to go to see a film or listen to a live band, you will never go alone.
I wasn’t a people person before University, but I’m more extroverted than I thought. The girls have given me so much confidence. Helping me go shopping, saying I can wear heels to my lecture if I wanted, eat that pasta, drink that wine.
Alcohol was my biggest fear before university. Back at home, I never went out because the atmosphere in my home town isn’t appealing at all, its FULL mainly druggies and you end up getting spiked.
When I go out with the girls I can wear what I want, drink what I want and go to clubs where I feel comfortable and secure.
Compromising isn’t an issue for these girls.
Going to University was the best decision of my life and that’s thanks to my mum and the amazing family members, credit also to Liam and his amazing family.
Its moulded me into a more aspirational person, a positive and driven lady.
If this is what three months has given me, four years seems like a dream.
Now I’m not saying University comes without any catches, there are bloody tonnes.
Stress and spots.
Lack of Sleep.
Moments of breakdowns and the occasional overwhelming sensation of drowning.
If you have that one friend that gives you breathing space, you’ll breeze through. Just remember to set achievable goals and not place immense pressure on yourself. Life is shit and there is no denying that, but the more positive you think, the more positive life will become in time. You just need to GIVE it time. Rushing happiness and positivity will soon come crashing down. It will come in dues time, and it will be so enjoyable you won’t realise your happy until you reflect like I have now.
Till next time darlings….
Be Happy and Healthy x