What Uma has learned since moving away from home

The idea of moving out is a feeling like no other. You think about the amount of freedom and independence you’ll finally have, all the bad decisions your parents stopped you from making are out of the window.

Pizza for breakfast, why not? Netflix until 5am? Sounds perfect. However, you gain so much more from moving out, valuable lifelong lessons that you can only learn once you go through this experience. Here are my top 5 lessons that I learned when I moved away from home.

1) You will get homesick, but that’s okay

Maybe not immediately, but there are times when you’re sick of pot noodles and you just want your mum’s cooking back. Whether you’re half an hour or hours away, you will still long for the warmth of your own bed and the nagging from your siblings. There are just some things that can’t be replaced, but you will learn that your new friends and your busy schedule can help with that feeling (and lots of phone calls and FaceTime).

2) Things get messy quickly

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Your parents are not there anymore to tell you what to do and clean up your mess. Your newfound independence includes knowing when to clean up after yourself, or you’ll quickly find yourself living in your own filth (which is cool if that’s what you want). Remember, a cleanroom is a clean mind, and you don’t want to find bugs on your desk.

3) Your friends become your new family As much as you miss your family, you realise the new friends that you’ve made are almost like your second family. Whenever you need someone to talk to or just go to spoons with, your friends are the ones who are there first!

"You learn quickly that moving away from home means that you have all the freedom in the world, which is exciting as much as it is scary. Finding the balance between letting go and being responsible is a battle however, it is incredibly important. Make sure you enjoy yourself, but not at the cost of your academic career."

4) Don’t hold back

The most important thing to remember is don’t be scared to live this experience to its fullest. Don’t hold yourself back because of nerves or embarrassment, explore this new city and what it has to offer. Embrace the change and you’ll grow into the person you want to be.

These are only a handful of things I learned once moving away from home, and there many more lessons I know I still have to learn.