The crazy, fun things you do in college are memories you’ll have forever. One day when you have kids, you’ll say, “Back when I was a girl, my friends and I would get in the car and drive to the McDonald’s at one o’clock in the morning!” Since I started college a measly month and a half ago, I’ve done so many things that I never ever thought I’d do- and not in a bad way.
Our first weekend on campus, a hypnotist came to do a show. My roommate and I decided that it would be super cool to go watch, and until we got in that auditorium, I really didn’t have any intention of volunteering to be hypnotized. And then I decided, I’m going to do it! Why the heck not? I didn’t know when I’d get the opportunity to try this again, and I wanted to settle the hypnosis question once and for all: I was going to finally be able to form my own opinion of what hypnosis is and how it works. This posed an interesting dilemma for me, as I had to be conscious enough to know what I was doing but unconscious enough to “go under.” At any rate, it worked, and it was quite the interesting experience. What I can say of it is this: the hypnotist suggests something to you and you act on an impulse that fulfills that suggestion. Regardless, being hypnotized is something I thought that I’d never do, and yet, here I am.
Just a few weeks ago, my friends and I went on yet another late-night McDonald’s run, but after our “midnight snack,” we weren’t quite ready to head back to the dorm. Near our campus is Dunning’s Spring, and so despite the fact that it was dark out, we decided to go check it out that night as the weather was pretty nice. The stars were gorgeous! We spent some time just looking up at the beautiful stars, and of course, we couldn’t resist climbing next to the spring, even though we easily could have fallen into the water trying to climb in the dark. Then we sat and sang songs, harmonizing for at least half an hour! It was one of the most fun (and most memorable!) nights I’ve had on campus to date and is something I’m sure I won’t forget, something that I’ll tell my kids about when I tell them stories about back when I was in college.
I don’t mean to give the impression that all of the fun things you do in college that are worth considering “memory making” are things that you thought you’d never do. Because one of the best things about college is that you’re free to do what you want on a whim. To go where you please! It’s so liberating. And that’s what makes things all the more memorable because so often you just pick up and decide to do things and go places simply because you want to. My cousin, my roommate, and I spent our fall break at my parents’ house, and one of the things we decided to do was go to Build-a-Bear Workshop. Why? Because it’s fun! Because it lets us relive some piece of our childhood and connect with that part of ourselves that will always be young at heart, even when we’re worrying about paying for next semester and passing our finals.
And one of our favorite things to do together is drive through town, windows rolled down, belting out our favorite songs. It’s so simple, yet makes us feel so good. We don’t even care how ridiculous we look because we’re having such a good time. The little things like this- the beautiful days when you take a walk together, smell the fresh air, feel the breeze, and enjoy life-
But even through all this, the most important ingredient to making memories is the people you share them with. Cheesy, yes. True, absolutely. These stories that I have just told you would not be worth even half as much if they didn’t involve people that I care about and want to spend time with.
College has so many opportunities. You need to take them while they’re there because they certainly won’t be around forever. One day you’ll wake up, and the real world will stare back at you whenever you look in the mirror. You won’t have so much freedom as to go and sit beside a spring with your wonderfully crazy friends late at night. You’ll have bills to pay and babies to wake you up in the middle of the night (which is a whole different kind of wonderful but harsh reality). So for now, enjoy what you can. Make those memories that’ll last a lifetime. Make connections with people who are worth making memories with. So that one day, when those bills are paid and that baby asks you about what it was like when you went to college, you can look back on those days and smile, fondly saying, “Well, back when I was in college, my friends and I would get in the car and drive to McDonald’s at one o’clock in the morning…”