Well I’m finally back at OU! I just finished up my second week of junior year, and I can tell it’s going to be an interesting 12 months.
While I was sad to leave Hatfield and I am definitely still missing my international friends, I am beyond ecstatic to be back! I missed my beautiful campus, my crazy friends and wonderful sorority sisters. I missed the library and all of the awesome tech we take for granted in there. I missed my fellow ChemE students and all of the crazy classes we have together. In fact, I didn’t realize how much I was missing OU until I got back. But I’m here now and that’s what matters.
Unfortunately the same can’t be said of all my friends. One of the problems with being friends with international or study abroad students is there’s always a little bit of uncertainty about when or where you’ll see each other again, even if you’re from the same university. For example, my friend Alexis studied abroad for fall 2015 and I left as she came back. Over the course of about nine months we saw each other once for lunch to exchange Christmas presents. Another example is my friend Patrick; he is going to Germany for the 2016-2017 academic year. With the exception of about two weeks during summer, by the time he comes back to OU it will have been about 21 months since we last saw each other. I know another girl who is spending the year in Ecuador who I haven’t seen in ages. Studying abroad is great and I wouldn’t trade it for anything, but it can create some absentee friendships. On the other hand, sometimes it works out! I know several people who studied abroad the same semester that I did, so we didn’t really miss each other.
I’m not trying to be a debbie-downer. I love traveling, meeting new people, seeing new places, and learning new things. I am so happy that I decided to study abroad and, now that I’m back, I’m happy to be here too! However much I miss my friends, in the end it’s worth it, but until everyone is back together, it’s just not quite the same.