Moving Back Home | Leaving University

June 14, 2016

Hey folks,

Wow really thought I'd clicked 'publish' a couple weeks back. Evidently not. Sorry pals, but here is my blog post from then.
So this week I bring you a post about my last week at University. Yes, okay, I still get to go back for a few days for graduation, but really, last week was my last. It was my last real week in Portsmouth and my last real week with my friends and housemates.

University has been an experience. I say that because I'm not sure whether I could deem it good or bad to be quite frank with you. It's been difficult. I think most people have the same idea about university when they apply. They think it'll be partying, great nights out, house parties, and a close group of friends that when you meet them you think 'Oh my goodness where have you been all my life, you complete me!'. And although I did have some moments like these, the truth of the matter is, University is not what everyone expects it to be, at least it wasn't for me.

I'm not much of a party animal, but I do love a house party and I'm even happy for an odd night out, if it's with great company. I think I assumed when I arrived I'd make friends with a small group of girls who would be just like me and weirdly I pictured the women from Call The Midwife. So really what I was looking for was a group of friends from the 1950s. Unrealistic I know. Instead, we forget that we'll be bunched together with 5 other people from completely different cities with completely different backgrounds. For me, we did all share one thing in common- we'd all taken gap years. But the similarities pretty much ended there.

Now, before you think I'm saying that that's a bad thing, let me stop you right there. It wasn't. In the long run, this probably helped me more than I could have known. Being in a diverse environment made me more confident and accepting. It helped me learn more about people and realise that everyone is different and everyone functions and reacts differently. This, personally, felt like a valuable lesson. And I actually did make friends (as dysfunctional as we were). I ended up living with two of them for my entire university life! Plus one new pal in the picture below!

Now that I think of it, having a gap year probably wasn't the best idea. I assumed it would give me an edge, an insight to real life and a maturity that would benefit me. However I think it actually hindered me. Going to University straight from college or 6th form means you are probably in the younger, carefree and partying mindset. Some of the friends I made at Uni had only just turned 18 when they arrived and so had never experienced clubbing and drinking much, whereas I'd been clubbing for almost two years. I'd also been working for a couple of years and so I think I'd matured. Maturing is great but in some ways I think I'd matured just a little too much to enjoy the stereotypical student lifestyle. All I really wanted to do was put the kettle on and get cosy and watch a boxset.

However as my last week approached, I was suddenly overwhelmed by the idea of leaving. Despite the fact it had been tricky and more often then not I'd found myself disappointed, annoyed, frustrated and angry, I realised that too often I'd focused on the negatives. In my last week I couldn't help but reflect on the positives.

Portsmouth was beautiful, we may not have realised it all the time due to the high winds and rain, but when it was sunny it was an astonishing place to live. I played many games of mini golf and spent many evenings in the arcades with my housemates, laughing about wasting a pound trying to win a cuddly toy. I went to the cinema a few times and out for nice meals up at Gunwharf Quays and enjoyed three lots of Christmas shopping there. I went out for coffee and cake and lunch in places such as Garage Lounge and Southsea Coffee. I went for lots of runs down by the seafront, both with Parkrun and solo. I spent many evenings in the gym getting fit and took part in a lot of fitness classes. I was part of Show Choir, The University Choir, Dance and RAG and was a Course Representative. I made some lovely course friends and throughout the the three years I kept the same group of friends. I completed my course and eventually my hard work paid off as I got the result I wanted. I got a part time job in my second year and made some amazing friends there. I became more independent, confident, and self-assured.

So University has been both good and bad, but that is just life. Sometimes we can't choose where our paths take us. My path took me to Portsmouth, and the lessons I learnt and the friends I made, will remain in my heart forever. Portsmouth has been my life for three years, and I am so sad to be leaving, but I won't forget it and I know I will return again.

Speak soon

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  1. lovely post. I've also just come back from my first year of university and I feel as if I've had a similar experience to you; definitely not how I pictured Uni life to be

    Beth xx



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