Cherish the moments with family; they won’t last forever

This time three years ago, I was a senior in high school, and I was just itching to leave the town I grew up in and begin a new adventure. It felt like college couldn’t come fast enough. Now that I am on the other end of my college journey and graduation is drawing closer, I have realized how much harder it is to leave home.

I love adventure, and my college years have been filled with it. I studied abroad in Italy; I spent a semester in Washington, D.C., during the presidential election; I covered the inauguration in D.C. and recently took a trip to New York City. I don’t have any problems leaving home or trying new things. In fact, I thrive on it. But with only one semester left of college, I have realized that my few visits home will soon become even fewer, and my adventures away from my parents will last even longer.

When I graduate, I will be pursuing a career in broadcast journalism and will likely be moving around to different stations every few years. Right off the bat, I would love to leave Texas when I do get that first job. I have no idea where I will actually end up, but to me, the idea of exploring the world is extremely exciting and is something I have been looking forward to. But now it is becoming real. I have registered for classes for the last time, I have been working on the resume reel I will use to apply for jobs, and I have really begun thinking about where I might want to live.

While part of me is excited for this new chapter of my life to begin, there is another part of me that wishes I could be a little kid still living at home. Deep down, I am a homebody and I love spending time with my family. They are the most important people in my life, and I always cherish the time I get to spend with them. It hit me this past weekend when I went home to celebrate Easter with them because this time next year I won’t be able to just go home.

I have noticed that I have begun to appreciate my parents more and the little moments we share together. Whether it is getting a pedicure with my mom or just going on a long car ride with my dad, I have made sure to really enjoy each moment with them because I know those moments will soon become fewer and farther between.

I wish I could tell my high school self not to be in such of a big rush to leave the house, and to enjoy the time before college just a little bit more. I wish I could tell my college self that it was OK to go home a little more often. And I know I will be telling my future self to enjoy the moments I do get to spend at home, knowing just how much harder the goodbyes become. I have realized that no matter how excited I am to pursue a new adventure, I will always miss my parents and the moments we share together.