Newest Fish in the Sea

Stories from a college freshman

Laynie Clark, Assistant Art & Life Editor

It has been a few weeks since the start of the Fall 2021 semester at UTSA, which means you have had time to settle into your home-away-from-home. Transitioning to life on your own can be challenging when you are faced with feelings of loneliness and you now have to take care of yourself, possibly, for the first time in your life. 

When you start living alone, you will experience feelings like never before, the most common being imposter syndrome. Thoughts like “I don’t deserve to be here,” and “I am not good enough” begin to emerge, it can be difficult to kick those thoughts out of your head. The most important thing to remember when these thoughts arise is that college is a big deal, and it is not an accident that you are here: you worked hard to get here, and, even though it can be overwhelming without the help of your parents, you will be able to do it. 

Hopefully, you had great parents who adequately prepared you for this new adventure: for those that did not, don’t worry. Coming into college after leading a rough home life can be scary, and you may feel like you are behind everyone else, but you are not. If anything, you are more prepared than the rest because you already know how to care for yourself. College is the time to separate yourself from your parents and finally test your own limits, which is arguably the most freeing part about being alone. 

Living on your own, however, is not without its challenges. You will have to learn new skills: including cooking. Learning how to cook can come naturally to some people, but tons of students struggle to cook for themselves. Cooking is just one of many obstacles that you will face. For example, you now have to grocery shop for yourself. Grocery shopping can be intimidating and frustrating for a number of reasons: you have to find parking, lines can be long, it can be too dangerous to go by yourself and the crowds are a nightmare. Luckily, after the first few grocery shopping trips, you will be able to maneuver through the crowd like a pro. 

Unfortunately, it will take time to adjust. No one expects you just to move away from your loved ones and immediately have your life together: it is okay to struggle. The best part about college is that everyone around you is struggling, even if they do not physically show it.