Every semester, people come in and out of my life. Friends study abroad, others graduate, and some just lose touch for no reason in particular. It used to make me really sad when good friends of mine left, whether it was just for a semester or forever. I selfishly wanted everyone I cared about to stay in Boston until I was ready to leave. I was also afraid that study abroad would change people and that when they came back they would be so different I would have nothing in common with them.
It’s taken me a long time to realize this, but part of the college experience is adapting to the ever changing groups of people that wander in and out of your life. It may be scary, but as people go away, it gives you the opportunity to become closer to those who are still here. You may develop unexpected friendships. I have also realized that study abroad isn’t this thing that takes away the people I love and replaces them with more mature replicas of themselves; the people who go abroad can come back just as wonderful as they were when they left. They just have more stories to share.
The reason this used to bug me is because of the super close knit group of friends I have at home. In high school we were all stuck in this tiny building with the same 100 kids for four years. We were able to keep each other sane and be there for each other. Nothing ever changed and no one ever went anywhere. I guess college doesn’t work that way. And neither does the real world. People are going to move away, reunite, leave again, and sometimes disappear forever. You can never know how long you have with someone. It’s important that you spend time with the people you love while they live just down Comm Ave.
As this semester comes to a close, I have friends who are graduating and moving to that scary place known as the real world. I haven’t spent as much time with them as I would have liked and that still makes me sad. But even once those people are gone, I’ve learned that life brings you back together in the strangest of ways. And even though some friends are leaving, many others are returning from study abroad. Next semester I will be hearing adventures from all over the world. While I will miss those who are leaving, I’m excited for next semester. I’ve learned that no amount of time or distance can break apart good friends.