The summer before I started university was full of excitement at the prospect of leaving home, living on my own and starting afresh. Having always lived in the same, small city I was apprehensive but felt so ready to move out and start my life.
I had waited until after A-level results day before buying any stuff, just in case I didn’t get my results, but luckily all went well so the shopping for everything was very manic in such a short space of time!
Moving day felt like such a daze, it really didn’t feel real! I packed up all my belongings, filling two cars and looked back at my bedroom at home, thinking that it felt so empty, knowing that my life was now in the back of cars which would be travelling 100 miles to my new home.
When I got to university, I was in a five-bedroom house, sharing with one other midwife and three nurses as they tend to put nurses, midwives and paramedics all together. The nurses in my house were from the March intake so had already been there six months by the time I arrived. That was nice as it meant that they could show us new students the ropes a little bit, especially with things like working the oven and showing us around campus and where the local supermarkets are.
When I moved in, I unpacked all my main items, went out to lunch with the parents and then let them leave pretty quickly as I just didn’t know what to do! Uni rooms aren’t all that big after all and fitting three people into them whilst trying to unpack and move things around isn’t the easiest! After they left, being such a family-orientated person, I must admit I shed more than a few tears but that’s to be expected and my new housemates were so reassuring. They were really friendly and welcoming, but it was nice for me and the other new midwife to find our feet together. We spent the first couple of nights exploring campus, finding other midwives in our cohort and getting to know Chelmsford as a city. In hindsight though, I kind of wish I hadn’t kicked my parents out so quickly as it would have been helpful having a couple of extra pairs of hands to put all my life into that room. Instead, I was still putting pictures on the walls a week later…
We went to all the first events for Freshers’ Week, which I would definitely recommend as it is a great way to meet new people, from all year groups and all subjects. It was at these events that we met some people from all over the world who became great friends in 1st year. Don’t be afraid to talk to people at these events because everyone is in the same position of moving away and being in an unknown environment and situation.
I forgot so many things when I first moved, meaning that my parents actually came to see me the following weekend to give me back everything I had forgotten! The biggest thing being my phone charger, which they actually posted to me as soon as they got home. So when you think about packing for uni, make sure your phone charger is at the top of your stuff so that you don’t forget it; because let’s be honest no-one can live without their phone these days.
I hadn’t always wanted to move away to uni, and I found the thought of it very daunting at times, but looking back it is definitely one of the best decisions of my life: it has allowed to become so independent and really appreciate everything that my parents have done for me. It has also allowed me to grow as an individual and to live how I want to, knowing that there won’t be anyone to force me out of bed and into lectures at 9am but equally, no-one will tell me off for not getting in until 3am if that’s what I wanted every night!