I woke up on a Friday morning in a wave of panic and searched for my phone in a frenzy. I cursed at myself as I contemplated the possibility that I had maybe even lost or broken it the night before, which was very likely. After blindly searching in the dark and feeling the familiar weight of my phone touch my hand, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. But wait, how the fuck did I even get to my bed? The last thing I remember was taking headshots at a frat house.
I did what any reasonable person would do, and I began searching through my phone for any evidence of what went down after I guzzled cheap vodka from a plastic bottle (probably Banker’s). Apparently, some kind soul managed to get my drunk ass into an Uber, which is how I had actually ended up in my own bed. It was Friday morning, I had left my car on campus, and I had to pull myself together.
I don’t think this experience really strays far from what most of us did for the four (five, maybe even six) years that make up a typical college student’s experience. Here’s the thing though. I was
almost 23 22, graduated a year ago, and went to school across the country. How did I manage to get myself into this shitshow? In my attempts to fool myself that I was still young, I decided to explore student life in a way that HR hadn’t shown me. I work at a university, and I concluded that it was my job to go out and see if I could still get it at frat row. Apparently, momma still had it.
When I finally managed to convince myself to get out of bed at about 7:15, I realized that I was still very inebriated. In my drunken stupor, I managed to convince myself that this was a good thing, since I could now actively fight the impending hangover before it really hit me. I emptied the contents of my Camelbak, hopped in the shower, and put on some jeans with a university tee shirt. Thank God for casual Fridays. But how would I get to work if I didn’t have my car? Even if my car had been at my house, I would’ve still been too drunk to drive it.
My roommate happened to randomly have the day off, and gave me a ride to work. Even though I doused myself with a generous amount of perfume, I was still shitting bricks about my boss smelling the alcohol seeping through my pores during the hour-long meeting I had with her that morning. Through the power of coconut water, ibuprofen, and bullshit I powered through the meeting and made it out unscathed. However, when the meeting finally ended, the events from the past twelve hours really began to sink in.
I went out on my own, got blackout drunk, and ended up at frat row. I was at a party with a bunch of eighteen-year-olds, and I was 90% sure I had made out with at least one of them. Who the fuck am I? This is when it really hit me that graduating school and entering a completely new environment was really alienating and lonely. I promised myself that this would never happen again, and that I would find healthier ways to cope with the fact that I had lost the majority of my social circle and support system.
Except it has. Why?
I know I won’t befriend the chicks I meet at these frat parties, even if they happen to belong to the same sorority I once belonged to. I know that they judge me for being a loner/loser when they find out my real background. If I end up hooking up with someone younger than me, I know that I’ll probably end up being the butt of their friends’ jokes for weeks to come. I guess I find comfort in
hoping knowing that in a couple of years, they’ll probably feel a similar sense of loneliness and inadequacy.
Ultimately, it boils down to me wanting to escape real adulthood and the stresses of postgrad life. Working on a college campus really enables the part of me that wants to stay out of touch with reality. I hope that as I gain a better sense of what I’m doing with myself and the things I want to do in the near future, I won’t feel as scared about letting go of my glory days, when I could still say I didn’t get hangovers. Slowly but surely, I’m beginning to make new friends after starting my life again 2,000 miles from where I spent some of the most pivotal years of my life (read: I’ve been going on a lot of Tinder dates). Until then, I’ll continue to pride myself in earning number one Yak at my new campus, getting asked for a student ID to pay for my lunch meals, and keeping up with the youngins when I occasionally stray onto the row.
And in case you were wondering, yes, being a university employee and running into a student who you’ve hooked up with on the campus of a school you didn’t even go to is pretty fucking weird..
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