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Amanda Raymond column: Out-of-school blues

With schools celebrating homecomings and fall break coming up for many students, I can’t help but think about how weird it feels being out of school.

I never thought I’d say it, but I actually miss being in school.

During my senior year of college, all I wanted to do was be done with school. I was tired of studying and reading textbooks. I was over exams, papers and group projects — especially the group projects. I had been in school for all of my life; I was ready to find out what life was like away from the classroom. I was ready for the real world.

Although I don’t miss all of the different stresses of school, I have to admit that I do miss some things. I miss how close everything was. I could walk everywhere, and at Chapel Hill, the bus system was free. I didn’t bring a car to campus until my senior year, and that was only because I had to drive to get to my internship. If it were up to me, I wouldn’t have brought a car at all. Everything I needed was a short walk away.

Now it seems like I’m stuck in my car for half of my day. Having to drive everywhere isn’t fun, especially with I-85 traffic and having to fill up my gas tank every week.

I also miss the vacations and breaks. While I was at school, those breaks were my motivation to keep going. It was always a countdown. Only a couple more weeks until fall break. I only have three papers to finish, and then Christmas break. I have a bunch of assignments due, but it’s okay because spring break is next week. Now while everyone I know who is still in school is enjoying their breaks, I’ll still have to go to work. And yes, of course I get vacation time and holidays off, but the anticipation is just not the same. I never realized how much time off from school we got as students, and how much less time off we get as employees.

I miss all of the events and activities of a college campus. There was always something going on, whether that was a free movie at the Student Union or laser tag in the gym. I’m sure there are cool events going on in the Salisbury area, but I have to make more of an effort to go out and look for them. At college, everything was easy to find out about because I was so tuned in and immersed. Activities will probably be easier to find when I actually move to Salisbury, which will hopefully be happening soon.

It was a strange feeling seeing everyone getting ready to go back to school back in August. I felt like I should have been doing something to prepare for going back to school, too. Maybe going over my new schedule or reviewing syllabi. On one hand, it feels good not to have to worry about finding classrooms, dealing with difficult professors and having to go through the “getting to know you” first days of the semester. On the other hand, I kind of miss it. I’m sure I will eventually go back to school some time in the future, but for now, I guess it’s true what they say — you never know how much you love something until it’s gone.

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