Before coming to college, my friends and I made a promise: we would call each other at least once a week and text each other often. We kept up with it for the first couple of weeks and I even went so far as to schedule a time in my calendar to make the calls and catch up with the texts. But after classes started picking up, it wasn’t as easy to do so. I deleted the calendar slot so I could make room for things I needed to do on campus. Life got in the way of our routine and there wasn’t really anything we could do about it.
Added to the stress of classes and homesickness was the need to forge close relationships with the friends I made at Tufts. I didn’t know how I was supposed to be present for my friends all the way back at home and at the same time, also be present for my friends here. I was worried I would lose my best friends, both at school and at home – I thought that if I spent too much time maintaining my home friendships, my school friendships would suffer, and vice versa – if I spent all of my time with my school friends, I thought my home friendships would suffer.
When I went home for Thanksgiving break and then for winter break and reconnected with all of my friends, I realized something: it was like none of us ever left for college. Our relationships were the same, if not strengthened because we now knew how much we missed one another while away from home. After all, each of us understood the time commitment that is college life. Our vacation dates didn’t always align and not everyone made it home the weekends others did, but we all understood that.
Your home friends were, are, and will still be an important part of your life, even through college. Don’t forget that your friends are in college too – they’ll understand that you need to miss a call because you’re studying for a Calc exam, or didn’t respond for a couple of hours because you’re in between classes. Your home friends were there for you everyday at home so of course they’re going to be there for you while you’re away. It’s going to take a lot more than college to break up those friendships.