My second day of college was when I met my classmates for the first time. My second day was also when I met Zoe and Victoria for the first time.
After my first day, I was extremely nervous for the second. It was like my anxiety was happening in reverse, like the universe had got it wrong somehow. I bit my lip and tugged at my sleeves. I constantly touched my hair and tried to fix the strands that didn’t need fixing. “Would I fit in with anyone?” “Would I fit in at all?”
I entered the small city once again, impossibly lost, for the second time. After a labyrinth of buildings, I finally found the one I was supposed to be at… 5 minutes ago. “Shit”. The last thing I needed was another 100 gawking stares as I entered the room. Thankfully after running up the stairs panting – (I was seriously unfit after summer) I arrived to find a queue still waiting outside the classroom. I stood in line trying to disguise my heavy breathing (How embarrassing seriously, it was only like a single flight of stairs). It was weird, I felt nervous to start conversation, something I have never felt nervous about before. I don’t know what propped the conversation but after a breathy “hello” there was no point in hiding it. “I am so out of breath” and with that I doubled over. “Seriously this is bad I’m so unfit” I complained hands on my knees. She was laughing- thank God, she had a sense of humour (and wasn’t a personal trainer).
I was happy to have someone to sit beside to endure another (presumably pointless) orientation class with. I was mid- ramble about my never-ending hunger after passing by a stand of chocolate muffins (hello freshers’ fifteen) when someone sat in the seat beside. That was when I met Victoria. Our mutual relentless appetite meant I knew we were going to get along. And walking out of the lecture that day on our way to buy three chocolate muffins affirmed the beginning of our friendship. In between orientation Victoria, Zoe and I sat and ate our muffins talking about our lives, our likes and dislikes, who we used to be (in secondary school/ high school) and our anticipations for the next four years.
At the end of the day we said goodbye to Victoria while Zoe waited with me for my bus. We talked for hours, literally, on the benches that surrounded campus. We both excitedly agreed with each other as we confessed mutual feelings of feeling like we didn’t fit in with anyone yesterday and worrying if we ever would. It was so reassuring to hear someone feeling the exact same way I did. I don’t think I had ever bonded with someone so quickly and when it came time to say goodbye, it felt as if we had known each other for years.
I was so relieved, I was fitting in and I had actually made a friend. I was finally starting to get it- this is what college was. I didn’t feel alone anymore, and I couldn’t wait. The best was yet to come, or so I thought.