Read all of my musings of the world, unedited.
I miss you.
I know, I know. You’ve heard this from me before. You’ve seen my posts on Facebook, my Instagram collages – you know how much I miss everything that is Bryant University. I am that clingy ex-girlfriend who won’t stop calling, liking your pictures on social media, and showing up on campus. I even enrolled for a 5th year Master’s program so I wouldn’t have to leave.
It’s been hard to leave behind the place who made me the person I am today. But more importantly, it’s been heartbreaking to be away from the people who shaped me into the person typing this right now.
My favorite place on the entire planet is sitting beneath the willow trees next to the Bryant pond. Every night before I would move home for summer break, I would sit by the pond and just listen to the silence and the frogs beneath the surface of the water. The week of graduation, my best friends and I wandered up to campus from the townhouses in the middle of the night and just took it all in. We sat on the damp volleyball courts and just sat in silence. We looked around – we looked at Hall 17 and Ronzio’s, remembering the late nights we spent shoveling Mac&Cheese pizza into our mouths. We looked up into the dark windows of the lower village residence halls and remembered complaining how hot our dorm rooms were when we were younger. We looked around at each other – at the people who had become family somewhere in the last four years – people we were about to leave behind.
In my 22 years of living, Bryant University is the place that has always felt the most like home to me. Everyone warns you that these four years go by in a blink of an eye – but no one tells you how much you’re going to miss it once you leave.
I miss all of our mental picture moments. I miss SCREAMING the lyrics to Sweet Caroline, wherever we were, when it would come on. I miss going candle shopping (sorry ResLife) and coming home and baking cookies and watching true life crime documentaries with my housemates. I miss Friday night Asia Grille dinners before Sigma Chi mixers with my best friends. I miss trips to Emerald Square Mall with my sorority sisters to find the perfect mixer outfits, or formal dresses, or date night wardrobes. I miss Friday afternoon trips to Chipotle and crafting on dirty dorm room floors. I miss driving the back roads of campus blasting 7 Things by Miley Cyrus and screaming the words until our throats were sore.
I miss celebrating SuperBowl wins by the pond. I miss tailgates in the parking lot of Bulldog Stadium – not caring what the score was but caring that we were all together. I miss Around the World and the Catalina Wine Mixer and TNRs and WNRs and Rentes cheese fries and Piano Thursday Nights because it meant we were all together, even if it was for a short time.
I miss long chapter meetings and groaning about how hungry I was after hours of voting for leadership positions. I miss laughing over scorpion bowls and sushi rolls at Yamato when it was all over.
I miss the fights. The arguments that were so loud that they shook the walls of Hall 16. Throwing my shoes at crappy ex-boyfriends in the middle of sorority formals and all the slamming doors (lots of slamming doors if you lived with me and my friends). I miss all the tears that my friends and I have shed, because it meant we were growing – growing up and growing apart.
I miss awkwardly walking by your ex-boyfriend, ex-roommate, ex-best friend, ex-anything – it meant we had grown in our own ways and were off to do great things.
Salmo, I even miss you a little bit (mostly I miss oreo pies from freshman year and trying to sneak them out past Salmo Marge).
Most of all, I miss sharing walls and hallways and homes with my very best friends. Whether it was a heartbreak or a mental break down, my support system was just down the hallway. Now, we are car rides and highways and tanks of gas away. Everything is about 10x harder, and now we have to do it without each other by our sides.
For the last four years, I have always said that choosing to go to Bryant University was the best choice I have made in my entire life. When my parents encouraged me to graduate early to save a semester’s worth of tuition and room/board, I simply said I would pay for it myself – I wanted all the time I could get. I chose not to go abroad because I didn’t want to part ways with the people and the place that I had fallen so in love with.
So Bryant, I am sorry if I am that clingy ex-girlfriend you can’t get rid of. But I’m a Bulldog forever, as cliché as that sounds. And thanks to you, I met friends who became my sisters. I had moments that became memories and I have you to thank for all of that.
I miss the place that made me, me. And I can’t wait to keep coming back, year after year, to see the faces that I looked at that week of graduation.
Happy Homecoming Bulldogs.