Pitch black. Late night. Just the bright light of the screen on my laptop and a blinking cursor to keep me company. I’m currently sitting on the floor, thinking about the past week of my life and how eventful it has been. Tumultuous. Emotional. Exciting. Rewarding. It’s raining in Toronto tonight which usually isn’t something to be happy about, but I’ve always loved the rain. You would think I would be sick of it by now because I’m Irish, but tonight it reminds me of home.
Home is waking up to the sound of my mammy in the kitchen. It’s cold mornings wrapped under the duvet. It’s watching my favourite TV shows in the middle of the night. Home is green. Home is vibrant. Home is welcoming hugs and warm cups of tea. 2am chats with my best friend, sitting on my bedroom floor. It’s the sound of my dad coming home from a long day of work. My brother running down the stairs. What I’ve realised in the past week is that home is not a place, but the people that I love. And home is always with me.
Leaving is a difficult concept to grasp. My last week at home was spent with the people that have mattered the most to me in my life, and it didn’t hit me until I was saying goodbye to my friend that I’ve known for 8 years that this was actually happening. I was leaving everything I had ever known. That night I spent the majority of the time sitting on the bathroom floor, convincing myself I couldn’t go through with this and that university was a bad idea and that I was doomed and everything would be terrible. But then I decided to do something else. I decided to be brave. I packed up my life into a suitcase, kissed my parents goodbye at the airport, and got on a flight to Toronto.
And it has been amazing.
Seeing Ireland at 30,000ft in the air and seeing Toronto from the same view just a few hours later reminded me of how small the world is. When I land in Toronto, I usually feel a sense of unfamiliarity but this time it felt a lot more like a second home. My sister picked me up at the airport and it has been incredible to have her here because whether it’s family or friends, it’s people more than anything else that make you feel like you belong somewhere. I’ve spent the past week at her place and we’ve been shopping and exploring campus, buying necessities for my dorm room and having the best time in the city together.
One of the most exciting events this week has been receiving my brand new LGG3 phone on Tuesday, and meeting another ‘Road to Ryerson’ blogger Raven Lam who is beautiful and so funny. It was amazing meeting someone who is sharing the exact same experience which makes me so excited to meet even more awesome people at Orientation Week. I have also loved using my LGG3 phone and setting up my Instagram account where I will be documenting even more of my road to Ryerson including moving into residence!
Of course I am nervous to be moving into residence tomorrow, which I’m sure most new students are. What’s important to remember is that we’re all starting off just the same, just as nervous and excited and overwhelmed as each other. And spending the past week exploring the city, watching the sunrise and exploring Ryerson reminds me that I am here to start living my dream. To stay true to my goals, and to pursue them. To live out loud, and to embrace opportunity. To meet new people, and to develop new friendships. Like I mentioned before, this day last week I could have easily convinced myself that I’m unprepared for this. But instead, I decided to be fearless.
And that has made all the difference.