I was talking to a girl at work today who I’ve vaguely known since preschool. I was trying to make small talk because there was no one in the restaurant and we were bored, so I asked her what she was doing come fall.
Girl: Umm nothing. Working, I guess. What about you?
I named the city that I’m going to for university.
Girl: But that’s so far away! Aren’t you scared? Are you going to know anyone?
I didn’t really know what to say. It never occurred to me to be scared. Excited, yes. A little nervous? Maybe, but mostly about being able to pay for everything. Nothing scares me about going somewhere else.
The girl at work hasn’t been the only one to bring it up though. I’ve had people tell me I’m brave and “adventurous” for going to a school that I have to take a plane to get to. The thing is, I had never felt like I had any other choice. I can’t remember not wanting to go away for school. I love my dad and my house and my town, but I also love everything new and different. I think change is really exciting, so I know I’m going to love university. Besides “far” is all relative. If anything happens, I know I can hop on a plane and be home in a few hours. There’s Skype and the good ole fashioned telephone if I ever feel homesick, which I’m sure I will, at some point.
What scares me so much more than living in a strange city is doing the opposite; getting stuck. My worst nightmare would be living in the same town where I grew up, working at a monotonous minimum wage day after day, never learning or changing or experiencing anything new. Being stagnant; that is what terrifies me more than anything.