This week homesickness has hit me pretty hard. It’s a strange feeling especially to be having now. I’ve been living on my own for a while. There have been times since moving, where I miss being at home. I didn’t just leave and not look back but this week I just cannot shift the feeling.
Mostly I think the reality of living away from home has finally hit me. When we first moved I spent 8 weeks travelling home every weekend for work so I didn’t have to adjust to not seeing family and friends. Once my job moved, things came up and we ended up home at least twice before Christmas. At Christmas we had planned to go home but with plans to spend a few days back at the flat before returning for New Year. However, we both got the flu and spent two full weeks at home.
Coming back to Dundee after those two weeks, the reality of not being able to head home as frequently began to sink in. With work and uni I haven’t been home since Christmas, which really isn’t that long but knowing I can’t just go home when I want to isn’t a nice feeling. We are lucky enough to have the ability to host friends & family over night as we have a second bedroom although so far family have just visited for the day. It’s hard getting a matching schedule when we are both students with part time jobs and our parents work Monday- Friday.
We’ve lived here for 6 months surely I should have felt like this at the beginning not now?
In the beginning I didn’t need to adjust to not seeing everyone every week because I still had to go home for work. I was so stressed travelling so much and not having a day off because of it that I shut down and went into auto-pilot. I had no time to think about anything apart from hitting deadlines and what city I was expected to be in at what time. Now that I’m in a routine it’s all hit me at once. Not going home so frequently is really hard to adjust to.
When I lived at home I visited my two Gran’s almost every week. I’ve always been close with my grandparents and when my Gran’s ended up on their own I made the point of visiting more often. I know I can phone as much as I like but it’s just not the same as actually spending time with them. Knowing they aren’t going to be around forever makes not seeing them as often really hard for me. It’s probably the reason I miss home the most.
Moving up here also meant changing jobs. I stayed with the same company but I have went from a shop with 20 members of staff to a shop with 250 members of staff. My old job I loved everyone I worked with, we had regular customers who I spoke to constantly and I spent 20 hours a week in the shop if not more. Yes, I moaned about things but I was so lucky to have been in that job. My new job is very lonely, I’m rarely on tills and I rarely work with another person in my department. Having gone from my old job to one that is so lonely was something I wasn’t anticipating when I moved.
University has been another big adjustment. In college I was always in a classroom setting with the same 20 people every day. Being in this setting you become friends with people whether it is genuine friendships for life or just friends because you see each other everyday you still have people to talk to on a daily basis. University is completely different. Maybe it’s because I’m a bit older than the majority of my year group or maybe it’s because I commute but university is lonely. No one prepares you for how lonely it can be.
Now why would being lonely at uni make me homesick?
The biggest aspect of this is not having people in my life that I can discuss things with. I do speak to people at uni but it’s normally just about coursework. Most people in my year live on campus and when I went to my first lecture I was so intimidated. There were 300+ people and it looked as if everyone was already friends. Many people were in groups talking to each other and it felt like everyone had became friends the weekend before classes started.
Not having people to talk to daily about anything is really strange and it’s definitely contributing to the homesickness. As much as I can text friends and phone family its not the same as having people physically there to talk to.
Another big aspect of university that I forgot about is the age gap between myself and the majority of the students in my year. Now I’m nearly 21, most of the people in my university year have just turned 18. Not a huge gap but the maturity difference is noticeable.
Think back to 3 years ago, how different were you?
It’s laughable as it really isn’t much of a gap but I have been called old! I’ve also been quizzed on why I would live with a boyfriend at such a young age (because why settle down when you can go out and get drunk all the time.) I still go out and get drunk usually with him and even if I didn’t does it really matter?
I know I’m not the oldest person to ever attend uni and there is definitely people in my year in their 30’s and possibly even 40’s so its hysterical that a 17 year old would call someone 20 old.
This post has made it out that moving has been all doom and gloom. It’s not, I am very happy in my decisions to move here and go to uni. Things will change, uni is nearly over which will allow friends to visit more often and it will allow me to go home more often. I am planning to join a society or club at uni next year but this year was to hectic to add another activity in.
Homesickness is something that everyone will experience in their life. Right now I am just looking forward to heading home today where I can visit everyone and just have a few chill days.
If anyone has any tips or advice on how to shift this feeling let me know in the comments!