I know how you must feel now that you’ve handed in those applications and have to wait an interminable amount of time before decisions come out. You are annoyed, angsty, nervous, and anxious. Some of you probably feel relieved, happy, satisfied, and content. And all these are perfectly normal emotions to feel. So let me connect the way you may feel to an experience from my own book - a moment of wisdom I’ve only been able to realize through meeting some of the most amazing women here at Tufts.
Four years flies by. College is short. You will make your friends and they will become your family. Soon, they will know everything about you and your trials and tribulations - the good, the bad, the ugly and most importantly - the beautiful. In my house, we call ourselves The Commune. We share everything - food, clothes, secrets, stories, and adventures (well we share everything except boys and underwear!) All seven of us in The Commune have been together in some semblance of the current version since freshwoman year. It was only a matter of four shared years and plenty of raucous fun later that we’ve become best friends who help each other through college’s challenges. These girls are the friends you think about when you envision “college life” or that new TV show Girls. My girls are the friends who know everything there is to know about me and who would take a bullet or fly to the moon for me. And I know I said four years flies by - but plenty of memories have been shoved into my four years with the girls.
Over the years, we’ve all suffered heartbreak to some degree. From the high school boyfriends we ditched in November of 2009 to the boys who came to mean a great deal to us in college - we’ve had each other to get past each and every heartache and heartbreak. Each time one of us goes through something particularly heart wrenching, it’s a whole season of Downton Abbey, Grey’s Anatomy, or Sex and the City on the agenda. It’s the entire Country Strong playlist and hours of the Prime Country station on XM that becomes a household staple blasting on repeat. It’s bars of chocolate, tubs of ice cream, and the smiling faces of your best friends that makes those first days after a breakup all the more okay. I don’t mean to sound dramatic and like we break up with boys all the time - but it’s happened, it’s college after all. We’re all a bunch of feminists, too, so it’s hardly fair to give you the impression that we turn into couch potatoes. Instead of wallowing - we hang up pictures and throw darts in the living room (kidding!).
And through every serious trial we’ve been through together as The Commune, I make the same observation. Nothing but time will make it all better. I tell myself and the girls:
Time is the only thing you have left to give. You’ve got to know that you’ve done the right thing - you’ve made all the right choices, said all the right things, lived the best way you could, and given your all. And at the end of the day, you’ve got to be proud of what you did. And if you still aren’t proud, or you’re still thinking ‘what if’ - well then you just gotta give it more time.
And now I come back to the position you are in. You’re done. It’s over. You might be upset you didn’t apply to another school or didn’t ask the best teacher you could have for your recommendation. Maybe you are mad you didn’t write your best common app essay. But you know what? It happens to all of us. We are all thinking “what if” and “what now.” And after living four years of college and learning some of life’s best tricks from some of the most incredible women in the world, I’m here to tell you will be okay. Just give it time - it’s the only thing you really have left to give.
Enjoy the process, make it count, and embrace the people who make you happiest along the way.