The University of Texas at Austin wordmark
Small handwriting sample of C.J.'s First-Year Student Journals, link to journals home page

Traci's favorite camera lamp

mural detail

21 November 2005

First off, I’d like to apologize for my lack of an entry last time. It was one of those weeks where everything took my mind off of this. My thoughts were elsewhere. My feelings were overwhelmed. But this, this is a new entry.

Goodness. This semester is almost over. My first semester at college is almost over. I suppose time flies when you’re starting a new life. It’s been an interesting three months, I must say. I’ve met so many people, some only once that I will never see again. I’ve lost so many people, some I used to see everyday that I will never see again. These three months are filled with mixed emotions, mixed concerns. I wonder if I’m ready to go back home for Christmas break. I feel like this is my new home. I feel like I’ve changed so much, but who has changed with me? Will anyone have the same mindset anymore? Or are we all on different levels now?

Today I listened to a speaker describing the Semester in Los Angeles Program. It’s where you spend a semester (fall, spring or summer) in Los Angeles taking UT classes and partaking in internships. It made me realize how much I just want to grow up, how much I just want to get out there. I want to blink and have my life set for me. Yes, yes, I know I’d be missing a lot of great stuff in between, but I want to have that complete reliance on something, that knowledge that everything is how it should be. Part of growing up is not knowing what’s going to happen next, but I’m tired of the guesswork.

That’s why I’m apprehensive about going back home. Sure, I really miss my parents, my brothers, my old friends, but I’m afraid it will all remind me of how much growing up I have left to do. Or it may do the opposite. Compared to some people who are there, I may have changed so much that things aren’t the same. I’ve been in a new world. I’ve seen things in a new perspective. I’ve had experiences that will undoubtedly affect my life forever. How could they be the same?

I’m a different person. Maybe not in everyone else’s eyes. And maybe not for the best or worst. But I feel it and I know it. Even the subtle memories here make me realize that this, this is college. Some, for example:

  • Walking into the laundry room at 2 a.m. for a soda and finding about six people in there simply hanging out.
  • Looking at apartments with my new best friends.
  • Going to Wendy’s at 3 a.m. and never doubting that I’ll see people I know.
  • My roommate and me staying up until 4 a.m. because we can’t stop laughing at the most ridiculous things.
  • Walking everywhere. To class, to parties, to restaurants, to everything.
  • Bringing my new friend home to stay at my house for the Texas vs. University of Oklahoma football game weekend.

These seemingly insignificant memories are just a few that remind me of college. That will remind me of college when I’m 45 and at that reminiscing stage.

And then, I’m brought back home. I can’t even begin to imagine what to expect. Will everyone just put on fake smiles because they know they’re missing their new lives? Will friendships be rebuilt in a matter of a few weeks? Will I give old friendships one more chance? Will I start new friendships? Will I realize exactly how much I do or do not miss Allen, Texas? Will I count down the days until I’m back in Austin, Texas? Just six more tests and hopefully many more memories left to go and I’ll have my answer.

   Inside UT | UT Home | UT Directory | UT Offices A-Z | Campus & Parking Maps | UT Site Map | Calendars | UT Direct | Accessibility
   Send e-mail to Traci   |   For admissions information visit Be a Longhorn