It was only 10 minutes total that my parents had stayed in my dorm once we had finished moving all of my boxes inside. 10 minutes, in theory, may seem like a short amount of time but that was not the case for me.
I wanted nothing more than to immediately feel the sense of freedom and independence that your typical newly moved-in college student would experience. I had no idea that within my first week, I would embark on more adventures than I would’ve during a year back home.
It’s strange- no, very strange to think that I, a complete introvert- would be finding myself talking to students at a local frozen yogurt spot off-campus until the manager kicked us all out. In all fairness, it was almost midnight, I believe. That poor manager had every right to be annoyed with us.
I (sadly) lived a rather sheltered life back in Tampa. It was difficult for me to experience these real-world situations such as parties or even meeting fellow LGBTQIA people my age that were just as (if not more) unapologetically open about it. I had always questioned myself even after my coming out as to whether I liked the idea of being queer instead of actually being queer, and to be around people in the same community as I clarified my views on my orientation.
I was a “bedroom artist”, as my friend Rachel calls it. I was just some kid that made art in the safety of my own room which served as my safe haven for several years of my life. To finally be free and to practically avoid the stereotypes that I had been expected to live up to was a moment of clarity.
I no longer have to hide my love for art and anything creative (YouTube, Blogging, makeup, etc.) from everyone. And I no longer have to be ashamed that I am a queer woman of color- a minority triple threat as I like to say. Instead, I’m free to break out and start over- to be the person who I have always wanted to be.
As for my actual academic career, it’s only been a week’s worth of classes so I feel any comment that I may make will be inadequate as well as unnecessary, But For the most part, I’m enjoying my classes but this could change in the matter of another week or two.
I’m excited, yet terrified of the changes that are coming my way, but seeing how change is inevitable: it’s quite ridiculous for me to feel this way. I’m thrilled to embark on new adventures and experiences that I would have otherwise been unable to had I stayed in Tampa.
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