I’ve literally been trying to write this for weeks. Well kind of. I’ve not physically tried but just because I know I have absolutely no idea what to actually type. Like what the heck do I want to say? These four years have been a whirlwind.
I rocked up as a naïve fresher with good intentions just yesterday and now I barely recognise her. But in a good way. I’m more myself now than I ever have been. You might be reading and thinking ‘oh christ, how many times do we have to hear this’. But I’d probably answer, well wouldn’t it be fucking way more boring if I’d entered uni four years ago and left now in 2016 the exact same person with the exact same experiences, opinions, wisdom, adventures?
Aside from being impractical, that’s just bloody boring.
I honestly don’t know how I feel right now but I still feel pretty boss. I’m ready for the next adventure, it doesn’t matter that I have no idea what that will be. I know myself, so I know it’ll be amazing. Life is short; people literally tell you so often that I sometimes think they’re wasting precious moments by telling me that life is short. But then again, it’s a beautiful reminder to not be your own worst enemy but to just be your biggest fear. As in, we only fear the unknown, so go and make it known.
Uni has been many things for me: horrific drunken mistake after mistake; procrastination at its finest since hilariously I have not done my best in my academic life and I never have; I became a bartender and met some of the best people I’ve ever known; I tried recreational drugs and loved it (don’t worry mum, I’m fine); I went to America for a year because why the fuck not; I’ve learnt who I am without those who mean the most to me but also how to keep them close whilst we’re apart.
I’m actually not sure there’s anything else I could have asked for from my uni experience.
Maybe I’d ask for my 18 year olds liver back but if it came at the cost of all the ridiculously special times I’ve had when intoxicated I’d say fuck off. This post may seem more about alcohol than academia but this is British uni so what else would it be about. No seriously, I came here to learn and I learnt a lot, about life, the Victorians, the Renaissance, American culture, my interests, what to mix with vodka and what to stay away from.
I didn’t come here to squeeze out a degree and a life-long career that I only half enjoy.
I came to have fun. To drink. To read. To make friends. And I did all that. So what the hell else could I ask for. I’m done with academia for a while but I hope to come back. What I’m sad about leaving is the uni experience and being minutes from your friends house when they want to hang out, or going for beers on a Tuesday because everyday is a weekend, or surprise visiting your parents and giving your mum that bear hug she has literally needed all semester. I’ll miss that. For sure.
I’ll miss a hell of a lot but I’m firmly not one of those people who believes that these days are the best I’ll have. I accept the challenge. And I’ll make the next adventure so epic that uni will appear a faint and distant memory. But a memory that will stay with me forever and make me smile when I need it most, or just whenever I think of black sambuca or o2 ice cream or the triangle or asia or just simply how fucking boss the past few years of my life have been.
University of Leicester, 2012-2016
Bon Iver – Skinny Love