The major changes that are made a little easier by the things that stay the same.
On any given Saturday evening you might find me hanging with my homies, on Netflix, or eating exorbitant amounts of cheese popcorn.
On Saturday, August 24, on the other hand, I was doing none of these things as I was whirling around my house: a tornado of anxiety and sheer force leaving a path of folded clothes and empty shelves in my wake.
I was packing.
“Packing for what?” you might ask.
“A lovely tropical all-expense paid vacation to Fiji?”
“A skiing expedition in the Alps?”
“A cross-country tour opening for Katy Perry?”
Not for any of these things but for an adventure much more important by far: College.
The following Sunday morning, when the pickup truck that would become my mode of transportation and the crossover my parents were driving were both packed to the seams, we piled into our respective vehicles and set off for beautiful Concordia College in exotic Moorhead, Minnesota.
My new home.
It was a long four hours as the dusty light of the early morning sun broke through the fog of sleep deprivation and stress to bring me into a new frame of mind as we traversed the wild terrain of I-94.
Upon our arrival on campus, I felt no more doubt or fear or fretfulness. I felt only a tidal wave of excitement and giddiness wash over me as I hopped out of my truck to be greeted all at once by five very attractive young men.
I was guided around the awe-inspiring campus that I now call home to my dorm by one of those strapping lads, Josh. Josh wrangled up a friend of his, Peter, and the two of them set up the bunks for my roommate and me and swiftly departed to help other lost little freshman.
I was given my key and introduced to my Resident Assistant (RA), Jazzy. She explained where my resources would be here at Concordia and left me to my unpacking. Within a few hours, my room was decked out with a TV, a tower fan, a tiny little kitchenette and a lot of room for activities.
As I stood in the middle of my modest new home, a young lady and her parents walked in and plopped a few boxes down. This was my roommate, Courtney, a wonderful person who has proven to be the most understanding and marvelous living partner to ever walk the streets of Moorhead. After the niceties had been exchanged, the beds made, and the ethernet cables plugged in, my parents and I went off to Buffalo Wild Wings for a lovely meal of crispy barbeque chicken strips and Dr. Pepper.
After lunch, they drove me back to campus and we said our surprisingly tearless goodbyes.
My mom told me to make good choices.
My dad told me that these would be the best years of my life.
As they drove off, I turned and entered the auditorium where the next chapter in my life and, more importantly, my orientation week would begin.
Concordia does orientation like nobody else. It’s a nonstop barrage of pump up jams; high energy 20 year-olds; getting to know you games; heavy conversation about drugs, sex, and rock ‘n roll; pure exhaustion; and food.
There was a lot of food.
I think I gained my freshman fifteen in just those few days. That extra padding wasn’t all I gained in my first two weeks of my collegiate life. I’ve collected a few new friends, a few new habits, and a few new adventures in the past 14 days here at Concordia.
I’ve found that I am much more attentive to my classes and much more motivated to do my homework than I was in high school. I got into the fall musical, Les Misérables, and I’ve met some of the most extraordinary people with some of the most beautiful and the most horrific paths that have brought them into my life.
On any given Saturday evening, you might find me at a faculty concert, hanging with my new homies, doing my music theory homework, or eating exorbitant amounts of all you can eat cookie dough from the dining services here at Concordia.
Move-in day changed a lot about my day-to-day life. And I love it.