How Sweethome became my home
I have a rare ability to say that I’ve lived in the same place for the three years I’ve spent in Buffalo.
The main reason this is interesting at all is because I am not from Buffalo – my home is eight hours away on Long Island.
Since fall of 2013, I’ve called Building 7 in the University Village at Sweethome my home. I have struggled with the room – initially, it put distance between my peers and me. It quickly became a scene in which my other friends were interested in participating in and they moved in with me.
Now, it’s a home I have to leave.
This is a room that has grown with me. A place where I was able to find solace away from home, to invite all of the new friends I had met to hang out, where I have a thousand memories with the roommates I’ve had.
Some of the decorations in my room have been there since the first day I moved in. My tapestry, which depicts the sun amongst the stars, has hung over my bed since that first week. The pictures of my baby brother have increased and changed as he has grown over time. My Albert Einstein poster has steadily hung above my desk.
The consistency is comforting and reminds me of just how much the apartment has become my home, at times more so than my home on Long Island.
The first few months I lived in the apartment, I hated it. I would actively try to make plans in dorms or on campus and I barely knew my roommates. Two of them were international students and one was a junior who I didn’t think I had anything in common with. I struggled to actively maintain friends, since I lived so far away from all the other freshmen.
Once I had developed friendships that transcended the borders of campus, I began to see the appeal of apartment living. The autonomy of my own kitchen and my own living room became an indulgence for the friends I had made and for myself. My apartment became the spot to hang out since it provided some sense of privacy. My roommates slowly but surely became my friends and I no longer hated the place.
By my second year in the apartment, everyone had moved in with me. I was living with three new girls and had my other friends on the floor below me. Sweethome became the spot – we threw parties on the weekends, would gather together for girl nights and made meals together. What was at first a desolate situation became the perfect situation: my friends surrounded me and I still had my same room that I always found comfort in.
Now in my third year, I have grown weary. The excitement of apartment living has faded as many of my friends move into houses on South Campus or to apartments downtown. The smaller inconveniences, like inconsistent WiFi or the lack of an open pool, have grown to be more bothersome than they used to be. I now feel more cramped in the apartment, as if the walls are closing in on me and I am forever indebted to the rooms.
Next year, I’ll be moving into a house near South Campus. The decision came from both the weariness of apartment living and the comparative prices between the two locations. I’m excited for the change – I’ll be living with some different people, in a different room, in a different location. This excitement is of course, speckled with apprehension. How could I leave my home of three years?
It’s a necessary evil. I have grown out of the apartment. I’m ready to start maintaining a house, creating a new home for myself. It’s not going to be easy tearing down all my posters and moving all of my things from one place to the next, but it’s time.
Sometimes, change is just what we need.
Tori Roseman is the senior features editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.