I’m lucky enough to live only 3.5 hours away in New Jersey. A train ride is so worth it when we get a long weekend and you need some down time at home. All of fall semester before going on a long, I would lose focus that last block of classes and think only of the short train ride away that separated me from a weekend at home. Seeing my family, sleeping in my own bed, and having home cooked meals was just enough to leave me doodling in calculus and writing packing lists in my head while bussing to class (I suggest neither of the two, FYI!). The train rides home seem to take forever, but I am always so happy to be on my way to Jersey. My parents would pick me up and I would be nothing but smiles. As Sunday morning came, which it always did too fast, it would be time to board the train and head back to New London. This was never an easy task – it was always filled with tears and long hugs, never wanting to say goodbye. “I don’t want to go back!” always seemed to be my famous last words. Boy, have I sure changed from last semester. Just this past weekend (MLK weekend) I spent the first long of the spring semester at home.
I had the same emotions on the train ride down – who isn’t excited to go home? But instead of being tearful and upset getting ready to go back, I only found myself excited to get back “home.” The Academy has become my new home. Whoa, did I just write those words – yeah, I guess I really did. Never would I have dreamed that I would claim Chase Hall to be my new home, but it grows on you (for some, sooner than others). Of course it’s nice to leave, but as of late I find myself being okay with staying here. As I become better at managing time and the hectic schedule 4/c have, my friends and I are able to laugh and have some good times. I also look forward to track practices and meets and being with my team. I even look forward to classes (what?!) because, as I learned over break, I enjoy having lots of things to do. Too much free time can be poisonous! I guess what I’m trying to say is this place grows on you. At first, it seems like you will be stuck in the cadet twilight zone forever, never to graduate and become an Ensign. But semesters pass by faster than you think and before you know it you’re sliding on a new pair of shoulder boards. So here’s a little piece of advice for all the future swabs/fourth class out there: give this place its fair shot. It may seem rough at first, but it is SO worth it in the long run. It only gets better!
More about Allie.