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therealljidol - week 9 - topic: unprepared.

break o' Dawn

random - kristin & maddie

therealljidol - week 9 - topic: unprepared.

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random - kristin & maddie
If you were to look back in my LJ, about... oh.... three years and a couple of months, you would find some VERY exciting entries. Almost all of them would be excited about one thing. See.. after twenty one years (and about three days, but hey, who was counting?) I would FINALLY be moving out of my parents house. Now, this is a big deal for EVERYONE, but for me.. see... I mean, things are better now, but for the first twenty one years of my life, my parents and I just DID NOT get along. Not, like, normal not get along.. I mean, like.. every single thing was a battle. It didn't NEED to be, but for some reason it was. My mom and I are very similar in some regards and so, we clashed on many things. And my dad.. well, it was my dads thing to just kinda.. step back and do what my mother told him. It's not really like that anymore, but at the time it was. So, suffice it to say that moving out was like... the angel chorus singing. The clouds opening up to find the beautiful sun peeking through. The - well, you get the idea.

So, moving day had come. I wasn't even fully packed yet. Go figure. But, I figured... whatever. I was only moving onto my schools campus about twenty minutes away. If I forgot something.. whatever. I wasn't that far away. So, me, my parents, and one of my best friends hopped into the car with my luggage and made our merry way towards freedom.

My thoughts were going a mile a minute. "I can't wait. Oh my god, this is going to be amazing. Oh my - oh my god, what in the hell...". We had arrived at the campus. It was a ZOO. And that was putting it mildly. It was raining and it took like half an hour to figure out which room I was in. But, then we got it. We walked in and saw... my roommate. Oh yeah. I had forgotten about her in all of the excitement. But, hey, that was okay. We had communicated over email for awhile and she seemed nice enough. Besides, we actually had separate bedrooms, we just shared a bathroom. No big deal. Except.. well, why was her stuff in both rooms? Refusing to be daunted, I asked her:

"Hey.. [insert roomates name here.. actually.. we'll call her B.]. Why is your, um.. stuff in both rooms?"

"Oh," was her reply. "I haven't figured out which one I want yet."

Uh huh. Okay. So, we sit there for a bit as she figures out which one is better. (I am not gonna lie to you guys. They were both exactly the same.) Then, her mom and her sister leave and it's just us and her. I get my stuff unpacked, and glance around. This doesn't look like home. This roommate of mine who has no been singing some Broadway musical song at the top of her lungs totally off key.. I have to live with her? (Don't get me wrong, I adore Broadway musicals. Just, not sung by her. I'm just sayin'." I glance at my best friend who is already inching towards the door. She's made her opinion clear from the beginning. What the HELL is this place? Something along those lines. Then I shift my glance to my parents. "Mom?" I say softly. I suddenly don't want them to leave. But, they do. A blur of hugs, and words like "We'll see you soon. Call us. Have fun!".

I blink a few times when they're gone and swiftly whipe that wet thing off my face. Come on, Steph. What's wrong with you? This is what you WANTED. FREEDOM! My roommate comes in and suggest we go hang out with some of the rest of the freshmen. Yes. This is good. I glance once more at my computer which would not have the internet for four more days (something I was UNAWARE of until I got there.) and then agree to go with her, holding onto my cell phone.

We meet some people. Two guys. One of them immediately starts hitting on me. I tell him I have a boyfriend. He spends the rest of the few minutes we stood with them (really, the rest of the year.) asking me how serious it was and if I was SURE that it was going to last forever. Because, if not... *sigh*. Then, we met some short-ish girl with pink hair. She seemed interesting at least. And she told me she was going to teach me how to play the guitar. Alright then. Cool. (Actually, that girls name is Faithe and she remains a very good friend of mine to this day. She might even be reading this. Hi Faithe!).

We mingle some more, turning each corner to find a group of people drinking (this was like 2:00 pm) or smoking up at each point. This was weird. Okay, no. This was NOT what I wanted.

My then boyfriend arrived. He was over it from the moment he stepped in, which is okay. I mean, he was eight years old than I was.. for him, this was "been there, done that." I pleaded with him to get me the fuck out of there. He obliged and we spent that day together. But, he eventually had to take me back.

The next few days was a whirlwind. It seemed at every turn things got weirder and weirder. One of the few friends I had made thus far, packed up her stuff and went home. My roommmate got weirder and weirder and found a boyfriend very quickly who was even weirder than she was. After only two days, I had her number - my money went missing, dishes in the sink piled up towards the ceiling, and their loud sexual encounters still haunt my dreams. Also, the fridge smelled from.. whatever they had put in there. (They took out my alcohol to make room for their funny smelling things. And drank it. Another lovely habit.) Thank god for Faithe and her roommate Michelle and my other friend Melly, or I would have LOST it. As it was I came pretty close. I broke down a few times and called my parents begging them to let me come home.

"This isn't what I wanted1" I cried out. "I'm not ready for this!"

They wouldn't budge. Understandably so, now. Then, I thought they were evil. EVIL.

My boyfriend couldn't do much to help either. He was living with his parents again, trying to save up some money.

I didn't get it. With no one telling me what to do and how to do it, I was left to figure it out by myself. I didn't like that.

And the classes - oh the classes were nothing like high school. This was HARD.

I tried. I tried and I tried, but I could not adapt to this "grown up" life. I couldn't handle being on my own with all of this freedom. I couldn't handle the crazy roommate. I just wasn't ready for any of it. My first semester marks were dismal, to say the least. I didn't eat for awhile.. no, I mean, I COULDN'T eat, so high was my anxiety. I lost weight and then put it (and more) back on second semester when I started to use eating as a way of coping with the stress of it all.

For the first little while (okay, almost the whole year.), I wanted to be back at home. I recognized how odd it was, that I wanted to be back at home. After all, I was the one who pushed to be out in the first place. I was the one who couldn't WAIT to get out.

We eventually came to an agreement - I spent the week on campus and on Friday nights, I went home until Sunday. But, even with that agreement, I was unhappy. Totally unhappy.

I didn't get it then.. but I guess now I do. There is a difference between wanting something - and being READY for that same something.

After that year, I moved in with my boyfriend. We lived together for three years until we broke up this past April, and while I was living with him I was fine. Ironically, I now live with my dad and want to get out again. Go figure. But, it's not so bad anymore.. and now I know that when I do get out, I'll be fine. I just wasn't ready then. I was totally and completely unprepared for the life that I thought I wanted.

Live and learn...
  • Oh man, I've gone through that roommate experience. Only I was in a truly small dormroom, where he would whack me with towels and turn his music way up at will. Plus, he would start deliberately having sex while I was studying! I was so glad to get out of that madhouse and move in with my cousin once he began attending the university.
    • Oh, wow. Okay, no, mine definitely wasn't THAT bad, haha! She did smell up the entire suite usually though. But, by the end of the year, she was spending most nights at her boyfriends which was a welcome change. :)
  • I think my first time away from home was just as bad. LOL It's a learning experience, that's for sure!
  • Hey friend, I just wanted to let you know I am proud of you. I think you know why. :)
  • Freshmen year roommates are always full of drama! Mine was okay, thankfully, but sophomore year I had some crazy roommates. One of them would leave the thermostat at 98˚F all day!
  • I think our first time out on our own is never how we dream of it. :)
  • I loved this! The idea that what we want isn't always what we need, or what we can handle, eludes so many people.

    I'm glad you survived that experience. Honestly, it sounds kind of scary. (Smile) Undergrad was tame for me, compared to that.

    Nicely done!
  • Man, college roommates, huh? Mine was sweet as pie for a couple weeks, then turned on me unexpectedly. Sorry you had to deal with that!
  • We never know what's going to happen when we take chances and move on in life. I remember how hard it was to start college. I cried the whole first night, as I drifted off to sleep, wanting my Mommy!
  • I always say that I majored in drinking my first (and only) semester at S---. I went back home, worked for a year, and then put myself through school. I was far more prepared to go when it was my own life, then when it was an expectation of all the adults around me.

    psst: there are a few of typos, nothing major, if you want to take another pass.

    I like the entry.
  • Great entry and so easy to relate to. Moving out if something we want so bad and then the first experience is nothing like we really thought it would be.
    • Yeah... you know, until I read all these comments, I still didn't realize so many people felt the same way, lol.
  • I was an hour away and had a similar reaction. I went home every weekend and on school breaks (for the kids, not the college students) I even dragged my sister up to spend time with me so I wouldn't be alone.

    Well written!
  • A great read... glad you survived the ROOMMATE! ack!
  • This is very well written. I love that line at the end, the difference between wanting something vs being ready for that some something.

    I love the way you took the topic to do some self examination (though I'm sure you had already figured this out about yourself) and also include a life story that I think a lot of people can relate to. Well done! : )
  • I have three step daughters and I have seen the old two (now 28 and 23) off to college and no matter what I could try to teach them, they discovered that they were unprepared for life outside the house. I have another about to go off to college and I know that she is going to discover how much of life we have have been taking care of for her without her knowing about it.

    This is very well written and I could relate to it very well both as the parent and the student. And I think you raise some very good points about being unprepared for what you think you want when you get it.

    • Thanks so much - yeah, to be honest, I think my parents expected it too. But, they still seem to expect it - I went to New York for a couple weeks last summer and I think they were surprised that there was no wanting to come home then! ;)
  • My freshman year I shared a house with 5 evangelical Christians who decided to make me their project because I was a *GASP* heathen because I *GASP* didn't attend church and *GASP* everything I did or said was heathen because *GASP* I wasn't like them! It took me awhile to figure out how to separate the religious from they as people -- one of them eventually became one of my closest friends.

    Needless to say, I never had roommates after that year. I was too scared -- what if I got Zombie Roommate? Or someone like yours? EEEK!
    • Hahaha! That must have been difficult for awhile there. Yeah.. I don't think I could ever do the roommate thing again either.
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