Eda Naz Gokdemir
Looking Back and Forward
Woah, I can't believe that my first college term is almost over already.
It's been over two months since I was back home packing for college, still not feeling like I was ready to leave my family or live and study in a foreign place. I remember waiting at Istanbul Airport with a mixture of anxiety and excitement and finally accepting that I would never feel fully ready for such a big transition. That acceptance brought a sense of peace as I decided to make the most of my first term. This decision made me more open to new experiences and allowed me to be more tolerant towards myself during stressful times. I was not always successful in keeping up with this promise of going easy on myself, but even that is part of learning how to adjust. Even though the fall term is almost over, I know that the adjustment period will continue, and I am excited for what it will teach me.
With that said, there's something about the end of the term that makes you homesick. Maybe it's the cold weather, the looming threat of the finals, or the tiredness accumulating over 10-weeks. I've found it interesting how homesickness would not always hit me when I was feeling low, but more often when I was joyful. I would be learning how to make bottle cap earrings in one of the student-led workshops at the Hopkins Center for the Arts and suddenly want to share that moment with one of my friends back home. Or the kindness and enthusiasm of my professors would remind me of one of my high school teachers, and I would feel the urge to visit my old school.
Now that I am about to go back home for the winter break, I've started to realize that I will certainly miss being on campus. Here's a few of the spots I'll miss!
The Tower Room and the 1913 Room in the library! I know for sure that I won't miss studying. I mean, who would? But I've realized that doing work can be much more enjoyable when I'm studying in a gorgeous, historical setting with friends to share my struggle with.
One of my favorite ways to recharge between classes is chilling on the Green while drinking smoothies from Collis. Though it has been getting colder the past few weeks, I know I will still miss being outdoors and destressing in Hanover's beautiful fall weather. I'll also miss getting some free coffee and tea at One Wheelock with other Turkish students, even though all of us are looking forward to drinking Turkish tea and coffee once we get back home.
Not to mention the BisCo (Bissell & Cohen Hall) common room. I love how there's almost always someone cooking in the kitchen or chatting about some random topic.
Last but not least, I'll miss hanging out with the international student community at Dartmouth. In short, I'll miss being around the amazing people I've met here. I am looking forward to catching up with friends and family back home and getting back for a winter term full of new experiences!