The World is Ending: Moving Up and Out


Photo by Catie Russ

Senior Lunah Schleret checks her housing portal for the University of California, San Diego. “I’m going to be in another state, and it’s honestly terrifying,” Schleret said.

At what point does a home become a ‘childhood home’?

For seniors, that time is almost here. As we move out of high school and into college, a new modifier is needed to clarify where we live. Are we ‘home’ in our dorms, or ‘home’ with our families, where we grew up? Somewhere amidst this confusion, we begin tacking a ‘childhood’ before ‘home’ to refer to the place where we grew up. This change happens stealthily, yet its effect is monstrous; when our home becomes a ‘childhood home,’ we end a chapter of our lives, with a finality that we can never undo.

As kids, our home was just ‘home’ because we had nothing to compare it to. To call it a ‘childhood’ home would be redundant because we were kids, living there. Maybe it was ‘mom’s house,’ ‘dad’s house’ or ‘the old house,’ but it was still home. There was never an indicator of age before it, never a need to clarify who we were when we lived in it. “I haven’t gone for such an extended period of time living without my family,” senior Trisha Sayal said. “But I do plan to maintain a pretty strong relationship with my family.”

Now, college looms on the horizon. For students, this usually means moving away from home, sometimes for the first time. Alone in a new environment, it’s easy to feel as if the world as we know it is ending. “It’s honestly terrifying. I don’t really like to think about it,” senior Lunah Schleret said.

Until we adjust to our new dorms we’ll live like guests in our own space, separated from our now-childhood homes by the knowledge that we’re no longer children, yet not comfortable enough in our new housing to call it a home. “Roommate or no roommate, I’m going to be homesick as hell. In addition to missing my mom, my dad, my sisters, I’m also going to miss, like, Maryland crabs,” Schleret said of attending the University of California, San Diego.

However, students have plans to combat this separation. “One of the reasons that I chose GW is because it’s somewhat close to home,” Sayal said. “So for important events like birthdays, weddings, large family gatherings, things that aren’t really everyday things, but are more important or meaningful to my family, I’m able to come back and attend.”

Although moving out can be scary, it’s also an opportunity for students to mature and grow as individuals. “There’s no way of knowing. I could also just be too busy to even miss them [my family],” Schleret said.

At least for now, our world isn’t ending; it’s only just beginning.