I started classes this week at a local university and it’s stirring up a lot of mixed feelings within me. On one hand, I’m happy to be doing something new and exciting; I’ve begun a new chapter in my life and this is proof. On the other hand, though, that very same change is causing me to flounder.
It’s weird attending such a huge school. My college in Vermont is 2,000 students – peanuts compared to the university’s 22,000 students – and I’m used to an environment where I more or less recognize everyone that I see, where I have personal relationships with my professors. Here, I feel as though I haven’t seen the same person twice, and the classes are so big that the professors hardly bother learning your name. I feel like a nobody; I don’t like becoming so anonymous so fast.
I don’t want to doubt my decision to stay in Baltimore, but I’m missing my old college. I miss Vermont in the fall, and I miss my classes and how I could see the Adirondacks from the library window. I miss some of the people, too: my friends, my professors, my classmates. I’m getting confused and distracted – I want to continue going strong on this new path, but my past keeps popping up again, waving its arms and shouting.
I won’t forget the good times I had in Vermont, the people I met and the things I learned, but I won’t ignore the fact that I was at my most self-destructive while I was there. I’m trying to keep my eyes focused on what’s ahead – recovery, sobriety, positive change – and remembering that I’ve resolved to take care of myself now. After all, there’s no point in looking back unless you’re planning to go that way.