I have always been the type of person who is shy at first around people. It’s mostly because I am too guarded to immediately open myself up around those I don’t know well. So coming in my freshman year not knowing anyone besides my friend Jasmine, I had my guard up even more than before. Freshman orientation is a weekend filled with activities centered around meeting new people from different places, cultures and backgrounds. You will be saying “Hi, my name is_____ and I am from ____ and I like _____, ______, and ____” more times than you will ever say in your life! It was a bit exhausting after a while, but eventually you will find a few people you will want to talk to more. I remember meeting my friend Coco who was in my Orientation group, and immediately took a liking to her because she was literally the nicest person I had met while there. She ended up being in my French I class and now every time I see her around campus, we say bonjour to each other even if we are all the way across the room!
Over the past 3 years, I have met lots of new people who have come in and out of my life, but I have found friends that were SO worth waiting for. It really is funny how people come into your life with you least expecting it. Take for example, my roommate Mikar. I met her through my friend Jasmine and thought, “This girl looks cool, she has bright red hair!” I would never think to pull off red hair, so I admired that she didn’t think to change her hair color to fit in when she came to Hope. Soon enough, we got to know each other so well and for the past two years we are still roomies! We even rushed the same sorority together which was so much fun to do with her.
Not only am I grateful for having a friend like Mikar, but also for my others friends I have met during my time here. College is hard sometimes and when you are far away from your family, you need people to talk to who care about you. I know it’s hard to put yourself out there, but don’t be afraid to be yourself. Don’t conform to who you think everyone else wants you to be. College is a time for experiencing new things, but always stay true to who you are. Find friends with the same quirky traits as you (trust me you will find them on campus somewhere!) and don’t be discouraged when you feel like giving up. I met my other good friend Diana second semester my freshman year. By then my friends were: Jasmine, Coco, and Mikar. Diana was only my third friend! Now, we live a few doors down from each other in Cook Hall:)
So what I want to end with is this: the size of your group of friends isn’t what is important. It is who is there for you when you are at your worst (not just your best), that matters. If it takes a semester, two semesters, even a year for you to find those people, that’s okay. Those friends are worth waiting for.
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