The day before I moved into Duncan Hall on the Hill I felt sick to my stomach. It hit me all at once when I left my house in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. That was the first time I cried in a long time. I couldn’t help it though. I was going from living in one of the smallest towns in the smallest state in the country to 1,175 miles away, at a university where there are twice as many students as people living in my hometown.
To save you the question that I have gotten hundreds of times, “You’re from Rhode Island, what made you choose Auburn?”
To this, I always gave people the short answer of I was born in Alabama and only lived there for two years, so I always wanted to come back. But, to be honest, when I was looking at schools in high school my parents always told me, “This is your choice to go anywhere you want for four years. Take advantage of that. This decision is completely up to you but don’t waste our time or money.” After I saw the campus for the first time in February 2011 I kept on going back and forth between Auburn and another school. My parents put the decision in my court and two days before the deadline to send your deposit in, I had a gut feeling that if I didn’t pick Auburn University I would regret it the rest of my life. Long story short, I chose to attend Auburn and my parents supported that decision. I just went for it and I am beyond glad that I made the best decision of my life thus far by coming here.
My mom helped me move in and when I kept complaining that I felt sick the day before move-in day, she told me I was just nervous and homesick. Although she didn’t want to bring me (she feels bad about that now), we went to the medical clinic and it turned out I had a bad case of mononucleosis, so my first day here was going swimmingly. The doctor told me I couldn’t go out for the first few weeks, AKA the first few weeks where you meet most of your friends freshman year. The doctor even said that I should take the semester off if I wanted to. And I wanted to.
My Mom refused to let me leave because she told me this was a part of growing up and that I would regret it if I left because I would have never returned to Auburn. If I left that day I would have ended up going to a different school closer to home and I am beyond thankful that I stuck it out here on the Plains because I fell in love at and with Auburn University.
I will never be able to thank my Dad enough for working hard to make sure I could go to school here and spending more money than I will ever know to go to Pasadena and Tampa to see the Tigers play in the last BCS National Championship and Outback Bowl. Next bowl game we go to, Dad, I promise to not buy the game t-shirt before the game ends.
I am thankful for the professors I have had who truly pushed me and encouraged me to reach my full potential as a student and as a person, while ultimately preparing me for a career in public relations.
I want to thank my pledge brother Jeremy for driving us hooligans to all of those SEC road trip games that I will never forget (such as Knoxville 2013 pictured to the right). I want to thank The Auburn Plainsman for giving me invaluable experience for two years that I will always carry with me through every online story and print article that I cut out along the way.
Thank you Auburn University for accepting me and giving me the opportunity to expand my wings while also giving me a place that I know I can always come home to for the rest of my life. If only I could fit thank you notes into the word count for the hundreds of people at Auburn University who have made a positive impact on my life.
But most importantly, thank you Mom for not listening to the doctor that hectic day in August 2011 and making me stay at The Loveliest Village on the Plains. Here I am in May of 2015 one week before graduation wondering where the time went these past four years, but still ready for the next chapter of my life to begin. You know what they say, always listen to your mother, she’s always right. War Eagle.
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