From the East to the West: What the Across-State Transition Is Really Like

Sometimes you don’t know there are better places for you other than the one you grew up in until you’re thrust into them.

I’d never lived anywhere but the suburbs of Detroit, whether it be Birmingham or Troy, MI. These places were comfortable to me. I’d been on vacations, but those places never felt like home to me. When I began living in a place other than my hometown, I was shocked at how well I fit into the culture and even more shocked at how I never realized that I didn’t fit into my hometown culture.

Here are a few similarities and differences that I noticed between my hometown and Holland.

Similar: There are malls, shopping centers, grocery stores, and small downtown areas.

Different: Once you get a little past Holland, all of that disappears and you’re left with farmland. At home, you won’t find a field for miles.

Similar: Both are very populated with families and people.

Different: In Holland, people tend to have younger families, with younger parents having kids earlier. In addition, people here seem to be more relaxed than on the East side. Road rage is definitely not as strong on the West.

Similar: Lots of churches can be seen in both cities.

Different: In Holland and at Hope, there’s a huge emphasis on faith. Yes, there are a lot of churches at home, but I just find that it filters into every aspect of life around here.

Similar: There are people that love you in both places.

Different: My family is back home and I’m here. Sometimes it’s a little rough seeing them all at home together and feeling like I’m missing out. However, I’m getting an experience they will never have here at Hope!

Similar: Certain trends and statements, ie. Music, Facebook memes, the Superbowl.

Different: Fashion statements. Chacos and socks? A sundress for every sunny day? An entire Patagonia (informally known as Patagucci here at Hope) wardrobe? Yes, those are actual trends for young people on the West side.

There are a lot of similarities and differences between my hometown and Hope. One thing I know for sure is that I’ve made Hope my Home, at least for the time being. I’ve come to realize that Holland’s laid back, easy-going and friendly attitude is one that suits me well.

Thanks for reading,
Brooke

Published by Brooke Wharton

Hey there, my name's Brooke and I'm a sophomore at Hope right now from the southeast side of the state! I'm majoring in secondary English education with a psychology minor, so that I can spread the love of literature everywhere and maybe even become a counselor to help kiddos out with their current and future school life. So far at Hope I've helped with Time to Serve, joined a bible study, am 1-8 song girl, and a member of Greek Life! The only TV show I watch is New Girl, and I love reading young adult lit! You can email me brookelyn.wharton@hope.edu or follow me on twitter @hopebrooke18! You can always find me on Facebook, too!

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