Leaving Your Comfort Zone Behind Isn’t Easy
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They say your college years are supposed to be the best years of your life. I’m not going to lie to you, but they were mine.
As April comes to an end, and I have a mere four weeks left here at Mercy, I now realize that the last four years have shaped me into someone I am proud to be. Sure, mistakes have been made, friends have been lost, but along the way, lifelong friends have been made, and memories remain.
As I prepare to graduate in May, I can’t help but sit here and think about all of the people I now call my family that I am leaving behind.
First of all, my Impact family. I entered the class because my friend Erminia made me, and let me tell you, I was scared, terrified actually. I never thought of myself as a writer, ever. I hated writing papers and the only thing I liked writing were feature stories after I took Feature I with Prof. Perrota the semester before. I joined the class and fell in love with it; and the people. I’ve developed friendships with some people that I never want to lose. I have developed a lifelong bond with someone who has inspired me to write my heart out, and to that I thank Perrota.
Staying with the theme of my field of study, along with The Impact, I got everyone in the Media Studies Department. Dr. Medoff makes me laugh with his movies, stories and awkward candies. Lauren Gualdino is the sister I never had. I tell her so much about what is happening with my life. I get to teach her about how Snapchat and read receipts work. We keep secrets for each other, and talk about boys.
To my Residential Life family, I couldn’t thank you enough. You are the reason I am where I am at this very second. When I moved on campus my second year, I became so close with everyone, and the office became the reason I wanted to stay at school. I came out of my shell. I had so much personal growth that I never thought I would have. My boss became my best friend, and the RAs became my family. Nicole became my right hand man, Erminia became the devil on my left shoulder, and sorry Jackie, you’re no angel on my right. It just so happened I had two devils that I loved so much. Nafisa gave me hugs when I was down, Gaby made me laugh with her corny jokes from twitter. Kiersten gave me unconditional love, while I kept her secrets about snowmen. Residential Life gave me friends I wouldn’t trade for the world. They gave me a home.
Aside from a place to live, Residential Life gave me another place to go when I thought I had nothing. As weird as it may sound, I would go to the mailroom, yea, you read that right, the mailroom. With the mailroom came a family I wouldn’t give up for anything. Sonia is my school mom. When I can’t talk to my mom, I turn to Sonia, who listens and tells me what is bad for me. She sees what I deal with on a daily basis and knows exactly what to say when to say it. With a school mom, I got some school brothers too. Joseph makes me laugh more than he makes me mad, and Rob helps me with my articles, I wouldn’t trade them for anyone else. The mailroom is my comfort spot. When my anxiety is crazy, that’s where I turn. It keeps me calm, but drives me insane, it’s a place where you can’t make up the scenarios, and can’t help but to have some laughs.
I can’t say I have a normal relationship with the people who work at my school. Normally people who work at schools, work at the school and go home. I got lucky. I go to a school that is small enough that everyone gets along and you can’t help but become close with the people you work with every day. Feeling safe is important when you live somewhere other than your house. I don’t trust just anyone with my life, and I can gladly say that there are people who work with our security company with whom, I would put my life in their hands. Osmar is like my school dad, but in a weird way. He is slightly different than Sonia, but I can rely on him for anything. Jay and I have a weird relationship, and we bicker back and forth like brother and sister but he is like one of my best friends. I know if I needed his help he would drop whatever he was doing and help me. Anthony is my big brother who would pick on me, but has a soft side. Three guys I would trust my life with, and I’m glad to be able to call them my friends.
Family is an important part of growing up. With the extended families I have developed, I grew up a lot in the last four years. With my last four weeks coming up fast, I can’t help but to think about these people I am about to leave. What is going to happen when I don’t see these people every day anymore? What is going to happen when I have to find a new comfort zone, when I have to find a new family?
Well, I’m going to tell you the truth.
I dont know and with that, I can say I’m terrified.
I don’t want to leave my friends, my families. I don’t want to have to get used to a new environment, but I know it’s going to have to happen. The only way to get through it is by keeping in contact with my families. Seeing them every so often. These are friendships I never want to lose. These are people who have brought me laughter until I cried and memories to last a lifetime. These are people who made my college years the best years of my life so far. To all of you, I love you more than you understand, you have all shaped me in someway, and for that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
When it comes to your time to move on, out of your comfort zone, be brave. Say “see you later” not “goodbye.” Goodbye is too permanent. Make efforts to see your friends, and keep your head up, you’ll find another place to belong.
Find your comfort zone. Then leave it.