Survivng College years: Part 2
Time to say goodbye
Saying goodbye is not easy. For a teenager, and I used to be one, leaving home after years of living in familiar territories can be both exhilarating and frightening. I still recall the excitement of receiving my first acceptance letter from a US undergraduate college. I jumped up in the air towards the African sky with an overflow of joy holding the acceptance letter with my right hand, and dropped down to the ground with a surge of worries. The reality of leaving my childhood home, mom, dad, siblings, and chicken with the ensuing worries, came alive soon after the emotional excitement began to fade away.
In what emotional state did you leave your home, mom, dad, siblings, and pets?
Some graduating high school students leave their childhood home with great gladness. Starting college represents to them the joy of freedom from some real or perceived form of mental, emotional, spiritual, or physical distress or abuse.
While others leave childhood homes where kindness and love have always been practiced in words and deeds. To them starting college signifies an exciting , albeit scary, new beginning and an adventure where they leave to begin a new life but yet always welcomed back home; a warm place to come back to.
How was your childhood home and experiences?
Was your home a it a warm abode, and your childhood/adolescent filled with experiences that are missed, and with cherished memories that you never want to forget?
Or was it filled with painful memories that you want to forget, bury, and leave behind?
Success in college and beyond requires one not to bury these unpleasant memories and their associated negative emotions, or to escape their painfulness with alcohol, drugs, or dependent relationships. Getting help from the readily available professional counseling and medical resources available at your campus of choice is one wise decision that you can courageously make of your own free will. A decision that you’ll never regret.
Do you have your new college’s psychological services or your medical provider’s phone number?
We all need caring people who will encourage us through our mess and misery with their words and deeds. You need good friends in college who will spiritually bless and enrich you.
Do you have such friends?
Have you checked your chosen college’s directory and posted ads for groups where such good and healthy friendships can be found?
Feelings come and go and the truth about our worth and value can’t be trusted to fleeting feelings that change like the seasons.
The salad of mixed feelings that I felt when I began my college life in America eventually dissipated like the sand storms of the Sahara desert.
With time and patience, help and a dose of love your mixed up feelings will sooner or later fizzle out, and fade away like a dark, thick cloud that eventually disappears.
Meanwhile, heed the way of wisdom and refrain from big, life altering, risky, or foolish decisions when you’ve no idea what’s going on, and which way is up or down.
Advice and recommendations offered here are not meant to replace your medical provider’s individual evaluation, diagnosis and treatment. Please see your medical provider for any physical or emotional concerns.
The views expressed here are only of the author and do not represent the views of any other organization or entity.
Adel G. Hanna, M.D.
Author: Soldier to Soldier, Heart to Heart
A Doctor’s Stories from a Military Camp
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