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There are few things more nerve-wracking or stressful than being a junior or senior in college. It took me a little longer than most to get here, but I finally am. I am a Professional Writing Major at Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania. I am 7 hours away from everything that I have ever known (friends, family, the house I grew up in, my 2 darling puppies) and am tackling the task of starting a new life along with finishing my degree. Add on top of that struggling with a mood disorder and keeping track of all my marbles has quickly become a full time job. And some days, it’s harder than others.


Recently (about 48 hours ago recently), I had my first real bout of homesickness. My days usually go pretty well, no real moments of doubt or intense sadness. And then nighttime rolls around and I am in my little studio apartment, sitting on my bed with my cat off being crazy somewhere and that’s when the thoughts startup and the marbles start to scatter a bit.

I am very lucky to have two extremely supportive parents that when I call a blubbering mess at midnight they pick up to talk. Either my mom or dad, depending on whose exhaustion level is less, field the phone call and talk me off the ledge. After this, I end my night with a headache and some snuggles from Luckie (my kitty) and pass out hard.

Morning comes and I feel fine. Refreshed even. And everything is right with the world. But it got me thinking. I struggle with keeping track of my marbles every day and thankfully I am able to do it now, but it’s not without the help and support of my parents and friends and other family, including my two sisters. I couldn’t imagine going through this alone, but so many do. Why? Why should anyone have to go through the tough times alone?


The truth is, no one is alone. If you are sitting in a crowded room by yourself, chances are the person right next to you, studying just at the other end of the table, is going through something, too. All it takes is one “Hello” and two more people in the world don’t have to be lonely. We all come from different backgrounds and experiences, have different likes and dislikes, varying home lives and personal situations, but we all have a common ground – we are all human. We all need a little companionship every now and then and guess what? That’s OK! That’s not a sign of weakness, but a show of strength and courage when you take the initiative to strike up a conversation with the girl who is always sitting alone or the boy that everyone thinks is a little strange.

Everyone has struggles and tough times and therefore we all have some form of common ground. If we keep this in mind before we think about all the differences between us, the whole world would be a lot less lonely with a lot fewer marbles rolling around.