1 down, 7 to go: Finishing my first semester while appreciating the little things in life

Things have gone smoothly since I first arrived on campus in August. Life is good and I can’t complain! I want to highlight some of my favorite little things about Geneseo because the little things are always the most important. Recently, I discovered the peach tea from Starbucks is my new beverage staple; the upstairs of the Union is my go-to study spot; and I just bought some Geneseo sweats that I could easily wear every day of my life. The sunsets still amaze me and so does the granola from Red Jacket. I even added a new favorite cereal to my collection: Chocolate Chex. If you haven’t tried it yet, I promise you’ll get hooked! Currently, I’m creating my schedule for next semester, and I’m eager to take some psychology and sociology courses which are right up my alley! In high school, these were the types of classes that engaged me the most, so I typically do well in them. Even though I feel like the fall semester flew right by, I’m excited for a change in my routine and to explore more of my interests both in and out of the classroom.

I’ve found that appreciating the little things allows you to gain perspective on the bigger things, those aspects of life that can be challenging or a major struggle. For example, people are not lying when they tell you college classes require more time and effort than high school. Your grades might start out a little lower than they were in high school, and some classes may have you staying up way past your normal bedtime, but that’s okay. Thanksgiving break is around the corner, and even though I love the people I’ve met here and cannot wait to spend the rest of the year with them, it feels like it’s been forever since I’ve seen family and friends. On the one hand, I’ve enjoyed the freedom of living on my own and being more of an independent adult, but I cannot wait to be with my parents again for the week. I miss them and small pleasures like being able to light a candle or driving my car. Going back to Rochester and the house I grew up in gives me a nostalgic feeling like no other. Being away at school has made me value these relationships because it’s easy to take people for granted when you see them every day. I’m also ready for a break because the amount of essays and tests I’ve had the last couple of weeks are wearing me down physically and mentally. I’m looking forward to the chance to relax and recharge at home.

Overall, I feel like the adjustment as a first-year has gone really well. College is the perfect combination of the autonomy and responsibilities of adulthood mixed with the fun of still being a kid!

Sunsets and Seuss Spruce: my first month at Genny

I decided I wanted to go to Geneseo as a little kid, so campus felt homey to me very early on. I watched my older cousin, Jen, who I idolized, go here and I had to follow in her footsteps. Jen was fourteen when I was born and she was the coolest person in the world to me. I loved Geneseo because I wanted to be like her, but as I got older, I realized this school actually is a perfect fit. Prior to going to college, I had no fear of being homesick—I was a sleepaway camp kid growing up, so I’m used to being away from home, and I just felt like I was ready to leave. It definitely took me by surprise when, a couple of days after moving in, it really sunk in that I was no longer in my own bed or with the same people I grew up with for the first 18 years of my life. Spoiler alert: homesickness fades, but the feeling came and went in waves until it eventually stopped. For me, the first two weeks were the biggest adjustment period. By the third week, however, I had gotten into more of a routine and the surface-level relationships I built early on started to be genuine friendships. I am on the track team here, too, so once I started working out with my teammates, Geneseo felt more like home.

Around week three—when I was really getting into the groove of things—I started to take notice of everything. For example, I enjoyed the food from the beginning, but it gets repetitive. The food tasted really good until I found myself eating the same stir fry for lunch and grilled chicken for dinner every night. The one thing that never gets old is the granola; I could eat that everyday of my life. Eventually, I learned where all the good study spots are around campus. My favorite places to work are Bailey Hall and the Union, and finding those places saved me because studying in the dorms is not always ideal. There is always something going on in my hall, so focusing can be impossible at times. I’m enjoying my classes and I have found a way of studying that works well for me. This was also around the time that I injured my hamstring, which was a huge bummer in the beginning, but it’s what introduced me to the athletic trainers. Going to the trainer is actually something I look forward to now, which is not something I ever thought I would say. Lastly, I love Main Street with all the little shops and restaurants. It’s the perfect little escape from campus and is so easy to walk to. The fact that we are so close to Rochester is also comforting and gives us another place to go on weekends. Geneseo seems like the middle of nowhere at times, but there are always fun things to do. I’m excited to see what the next four years will bring!